Devolution of an image

what? “Why not break out of the bondage mould?” I thought to myself. Instead of heading to the dungeon in the three-piece Risa ensemble by Violent Seduction, I would create a fun, colourful character. Whom I promptly photographed in a serious environment—the lovely .anc. staircase with its lone window, where ethereal avs go to look otherworldly. It’s a rare gacha and takes pride of place on many an upscale sim. This one is It All Starts with a Smile. [We get kinky sexy under the cut.] Continue reading

Whistler’s other mother

reflectinginthepool In the wake of the breakup, I’ve gone back to being a lonely person who stays home, wonders how it is he could refuse to speak with me for more than a month, and kills time and pain by computing. I shoot in SL all the time, acting bizarrely like some kind of third-rate Penelope. I undo my day’s work every night so that I can postpone finishing it, hoping that I will figure out whether I want anything from life. (Anything other than old what’s-his-epic-name.) On a typical morning I’m logged in. I assemble an outfit, find a location and shoot and shoot and shoot and shoot, trying pose after pose after pose after pose, light after light after light after light. But I don’t like the results. So I return at night, but I can’t get the Windlight I finally chose to work any more—here for instance, I couldn’t get a longshot of my av’s hip-waderesque boots because my puter refused to render the reflections I’d enjoyed playing with in the morning. Penelope would have loved SL, especially in the good old days when one was lucky to get a handful of pictures in a long shoot that ran something like this: dress av/relog to make prims rez/choose between AnaLu Studio 5 and CalWL/pose/rebake textures/shoot/rebake/shoot/crash/relog/reset pose and Windlight/rebake/crash/make hysterical outburst/consume cola/relog like a champ. (One couldn’t be like a boss back then.)whistler'sothermotherfromanotherplanet I’m not satisfied and I have too much time on my hands. So the next day I do another shoot to capture the magnificent boot. That’s how I ended up with this picture, which I call Whistler’s Other Mother. (I was in my thirties before I could look past Whistler’s aged parent and enjoy the elegantly dour palette and not-so-awkward blocky composition of the painting. I urge you to relish that crazily extended lap while civilization still remembers paintings.) Of course, this is actually a picture of a mother from another planet: Portia wears the Natsuki butt-exposing cyber-suit and skyscrapingly tall boots by r2 A/D/E for this month’s Collabor88. The outfit is available in a variety of colours, including a shiny pearl shade that almost beat out black.
portia becoming pony I teleported down memory lane to find a setting for my second and third photos, which I snapped at NODE’s minimalist demo, House 03a at Slow. My favourite feature of the house is the relatively large pool that fronts the tiny single-story home. I always enjoyed the arrival of the fluffy dark cloud that circulates judiciously just above the Slow houses. It’s still there, and its momentarily hard rain still disturbs the smooth surface of the koi pool. But the pair of orange- and black-spotted koi are no longer in residence. Perhaps digital goldfish die at the same rate as the analog versions.

Credits
Throughout:
NEW r2 A/D/E natsuki boots[sheer]maitreya (this month’s Collabor88)
NEW r2 A/D/E natsuki[black1]maitreya (this month’s Collabor88)
NEW + Lamb. Bobbi – Eccentric pack (this month’s Collabor88)
Cheeky, Cuffed Belly Chain! Gold (resize)
[CX] Arm Piercing (Maitreya)(Gold)
Maitreya Mesh Body – Lara V3.5
.LeLutka.Mesh Head-STELLA v1.6
[:[Plastik]:- Varyne Skin:// FEM (past 50L Friday: this was a preview of the just-released line of skins that are really freckley and work with a variety of mesh heads)
Yasum*Nose Piercing *Black* (past gift at We <3 RP)
.DirtyStories. Heart Nose Piercing (past gg)
Pic 2: r2 A/D/E visor black (group gift in store)
Pic 3: Goth1c0: Leather Blindfold
hooves from a free pony play set, the origin of which I cannot recall (creator under Properties says Drachena Haefnir)
CHANTKARE, PONY NECKLACE (not available)
Pic 1 was shot at Prime 3D, which is a cyberpunk mall
Pics 2 and 3 at Slow

BDSM isn’t sex, but it is

thisistheendTwo posts ago I wrote about being dumped by my top. I said I would try to write about the problem of sexual reciprocity. Follow me under the cut.  Continue reading

We pictured me in rope

portia says relax My former top and I did a photo shoot. It was one of three bad experiences that contributed to the break up I detailed two posts ago. He wanted photos of a bottom in agony but he didn’t tell me that going into the shoot. He put me into an awkward pose, combining a gunslinger tie for the arms and a futo momo. He blindfolded me as we’d agreed to protect my identity, and gave me a rope gag when I said I was craving one. So far so good. He then occasionally thumped and shot me while I grew increasingly upset, but not because I was scene-time suffering. We were suspended some place between everyday interaction and scening, and that was not a place in which I felt safe. I should have stopped it. The larger problem turned out to be the photos themselves. I looked like limbs attached to a belly fattened to feed a cannibal army. The rodent-like contours of my face were not hidden by the blindfold or rope gag. The single-source stark light made everything worse. The good bits were shadowed: my breasts looked like collapsed lungs. The bad bits were lit like a prison yard during an escape attempt. I panicked at the thought of these photos going online. When I called to ask my rigger not to post them, he was disappointed, and I apologized for letting him down. I couldn’t have anticipated the way I would react. Then I asked him to try to Photoshop one of the pics, and he instantly refused: his style is to capture real people having real experiences and Photoshop is fakery. The visible distortions of my face and body were the point for him. The sight of a suffering bottom is “hot” to him; I am “hot” to him; hence the photos are beautiful. I never find rope photos hot. They can be exquisite, but the suffering bottom has to be glorious enough to transcend abjection. I transcended nothing. Continue reading

Sensei cliché

bendysensei Portia is always bodacious. That can be exhausting. I needed to do demure tonight, so I pulled skinny Anorak out of the sandbox. I liked the school uniform by Me Sew Sexy at Sanarae: the big shoulder ruffles are as function-free as tailfins on a Cadillac. I stumbled across Kibitz’s gorgeous bondage leathers gacha and departed from tried and true black for red (which I bought up on Marketplace). Then I decided that there aren’t enough female senseis in the world. At this point Anorak had turned into an ersatz Japanese wise-old-young-schoolgirl in bondage bliss, so I decided to adorn her hair with more random signifiers of Nipponeseness. (Of course that’s not a word.) If you venture beyond the cut you will find another shot of Lava’s Resort, which is hung with lovely drawings and photographs of roped women. And I’ll throw in a brief account of my odd adventures in subspace. Continue reading

Why I didn’t fight for us

rezdaylightTomorrow it will be three weeks since he ended our relationship in a snit of anger. My first top, my first rigger, gone. We were on the phone. I let him end it, didn’t protest it. “Why not?” I am asking myself now. Would things be different if I had told him we should talk it through when he was calmer? Prior to the phone call, we had had a number of extremely difficult conversations about play. In some of them I was alarmed, and one night I panicked, but I put the difficulty down to growing pains. His primary relationship (he’s poly) was falling apart, they agreed to take a break. He started to examine his life and decided he wanted to spend more time with me. As difficult as they were, our conversations were welcome because his self-examination was insightful, his self-expression so eloquent. I thought he was finally showing himself to me. I thought we were becoming more intimate. We were, and I couldn’t deal with what I found out.
I can’t speak for him. I can’t because he won’t talk to me, won’t text with me, won’t email me. I contact him every other day: I break down in a different way and try to convey to him how I feel and my need to talk to him. On Friday I sobbed into the phone, telling him that I feel abandoned and that I feel he wants me to think I’m a bad person. Today, the one-week anniversary of begging for exchange, I asked him if he would answer just one question: Did you really mean to end it when you ended it or were you just lashing out? I believe that we could have admitted that we aren’t compatible and split amicably. I also kind of believe that he made a fatal error and we should get back together. Which is an error of another colour.
scholarsn ightmareI’d been dissatisfied with the (handful of) scenes we’d done over the past four months, but it wasn’t until we had a sustained, seemingly affectionate and inspired, but ultimately fruitless, exchange of emails about future play possibilities that I realized the problem was not the scene itself. It was his need to control our interaction outside of the scene as well as inside it. This hadn’t been clear before now because our negotiations had been vague. When he opened up, I responded by asking that we negotiate fully. I started to tell him explicitly what I wanted. We emailed about what turned us on in non-sexual play. The exchange had wonderful positive moments, but in retrospect I realize that those were primarily affirmations of abstract principles of relationships rather than elements of our relationship.
I imagine that for some tops control means giving orders. For my top, control means saying no or withholding things. I discovered that he has four ways of saying no to my requests for scene activities. “I don’t play that way.” “That makes me a service top.” “I can’t pull [admired rigger] out of a hat.” “Don’t tell me to make you feel submissive.” That last one was hardest of all because, as I told him, he had done things in prior scenes that had made me feel submissive. “Put me in a submissive headspace” proved to be a more successful locution, but I could not see why it was necessary, and I could not understand why he refused to do what he had done before (hair pulling, leading me around the dungeon on a rope leash, pushing me into a squat or onto my knees at unexpected moments, nothing WEIRD). Although he said no to my requests in the emails, he did think about it and come through with some new possibilities for our next scene. Sadly, it was too late. By the time he brought them up, we had gone through an agonizing conversation. He freaked out before we could get to the dungeon: he believed I was planning to violate a new hard limit he had set. He trusted me so little that he would barely listen to me explain why I’d chosen one vibrator over another when packing toys for the scene. He was so upset that I couldn’t tell him that he had changed the limit since we’d agreed upon it the previous week, that he was now using a more expansive term, and that I sensed trouble ahead. Under the new term, I couldn’t use a bullet vibe, could only take pleasure when he offered it with the Hitachi, because that was a vibe that he would control. “What if I accidentally have an orgasm?” I asked. I can’t have an orgasm when anyone else is present in the room, so my impulse to ask that question demonstrates just how much the new limit threatened, in my mind at least, to lessen and eventually prohibit my sexual pleasure.
The conversation wound down and we left my place to go to the dungeon. But by the time we got to the curb he had set some kind of speed record in rejecting three more things I said I’d like to do. The certainty that had been building during the evening snapped into place. In a flood of tears and an avalanche of sobs, I told him I could not play with him that night. He was shocked and said nothing more than “okay,” and then, once I’d turned to enter my building, “I’ll wait for you to find your key.” I wanted him to embrace me, to help me sort out what was going wrong. But that doesn’t happen in real life. I tried to hug him goodnight but he returned my squeeze weakly. I will never forgive myself for freaking out. I should have stayed calm and suggested we go for a drink. I told him this when I realized it a week later. I don’t think he forgave me for walking away. I will never forget the shocked look on his ghost-white face, the look of a kid who has just been betrayed by his best friend. I wish I could tell him that I regret how much I hurt him that night. Even if he was being an asshole.
shuffle sad Things had been so fraught that when he got angry at me a couple of weeks later on the phone, it made no sense to ask him to think twice about ending it. And yet here I am today kicking myself for wanting too much too soon. I wanted our negotiation and play to change dramatically right away, just because I requested it. That was unrealistic. I myself had balked at the implications of the new wording of the limit, had resisted saying yes to it, because it compromised my sexual autonomy. This is something which a bottom typically surrenders during a scene. In theory I am willing to do it. But it’s clear to me that that is contingent on my top being willing to keep me aroused. I shouldn’t have waited so long to suggest we play differently, shouldn’t have stayed silent out of fear of offending him. I was new at this. He took pride in bringing me along slowly. I trusted him because of that. But my reluctance to spell out what I would like to do must have played into his need to control our relationship outside of play.
I also said a knee jerk NO when I rejected the submissive rituals he suggested because they were acts of service, and service is not what I mean by submission. (No one knows what anyone means by submission….) I told myself that I didn’t want to serve him by getting him water because I liked getting him water as a spontaneous act of care that I performed as my quotidian self, in my regular headspace, for his ordinary self, before scening. Truthfully, I didn’t like the idea of service because I associate it with those choking blow jobs I see in porn. Even a non-choking blow job is a hard limit for me, as is any kind of typical sexual activity. I believed that there is a difference between BDSM and sex and asserted that the former is erotic rather than sexual. It seems to me now that that was bullshit. And at this moment, in a new theory, my hundredth, I suspect that what wrecked us was an unwitting battle over sexual reciprocity. And that has always been a battle that I can’t win. Because I can’t come the way a man does. {More about that in BDSM isn’t sex, but it is.}

Credits
These photos were originally meant to complement my contribution to Strawberry Singh’s Yearbook Rez day challenge. See the collection of photos. See the challenge.
NEW All the Moon Elixir items are from Fantasy Gacha Carnival till June 7:
Moon Elixir – Coven – 10 – Maitreya – Bustier – Dusty Rose
Moon Elixir – Coven – 13 – Maitreya – Shorts – Dusty Rose
Moon Elixir – Coven – 20 – Maitreya – Boots – Dusty Rose
Moon Elixir – Coven – 7 – Maitreya – Arm Wraps – Dusty Rose
Maitreya Mesh Body – Lara V3.5
!dM MataHari – jewelPastie (add) **LOTUS** (past gacha)
*BOOM* The Illustrious Sproket Strand Rose Gold (not available)
MONS / MESH – Septum Rings (style23) rosegold
NEW Moon. Hair. // Tin Foiled II Hysteria pack
-Glam Affair – Sasha skin – India 01 NB (past gacha)
Nox. Beauty Marks [Four]
[KOOQLA] Nico – beauty marks tattoo
.random.Matter. – Misery Brows (tintable)
{S0NG} :: Chibi~ Abyss Eye
pose prop: Glitterati, Schooled (on Marketplace)

This ain’t really alive

plaguedoctorandnurse Portia plays a retro very very bad bad nurse, as in naughty but also complicit, an allegory for the Reagan era. (Fashion details: Moon has done a Bettie Page tribute hairdo. Mad’s medical pasties are perfect, and most of them aren’t as over-the-top sexy as these. The pasties are your go-to replacement for that rare dress that you can’t win when you play Zenith’s medic gacha, which is brilliant.)
training day21st-century harried, and horrified nurse, a debtor pressed into service in one of the “caring professions” that attracts fewer and fewer people. Possibly because the job pays nothing to burn people out. By people I mean women, who do 80% of the care work in the west. (I never thought I’d get a chance to use Katatonik’s Plague Doctor gacha buddy. This critter waited patiently for a High Concept post. As you know, a clipboard is the universal sign of Thoughtful Insightful SL blog posts.)
killnotcure Donald Trump’s Neoliberalist fascisim triumphant. This is straight-up dystopian-future sci fi in lingerie, which is really about the now, people, not about the later. (I love Naminaeko’s Windlights. These are the first set of crazy colour lights I’ve been able to use on my retro MacBook. The peep-toes are an N Core group gift.)

Gil Scott Heron’s B Movie, 1981. This shit’s been going on for ages.

 
Credits
NEW Moon. Hair. // Tin Foiled II Hysteria pack (at No. 21)
NEW N-core KAREN “Black” for Maitreya High Feet (group gift)
Maitreya Mesh Body – Lara V3.5
=Zenith=Medic Poison Belt (Black)(Maitreya) (pic 2)
=Zenith=Medic first aid Belt (Black)(Maitreya) (pic 3)
=Zenith=Medic gloves (Black)(Maitreya)
=Zenith=Patient Record board (pic 2)
+Spellbound+ Magical Pony Bit // Silver/Pitch
+Spellbound+ Magical Pony Harness – Heart // Silver/Pitch
Cheeky Amour, Valentines Necklace and lingerie (past Valentine’s gift)
Glitzz, Lovely Stocking (gorgeous open gift, LGBTQ pride rainbow on the back!)
Meva, Mask 2 (past Xmas gift; United Colors has something similar) (pic 3)
*S.E.* (creator Draconias Timeless), Vera Spiked Bat Bloody (pic 3)

Head
NEW Yasum*Nose Piercing *Black* (gift at We <3 roleplay)
[CX] Tongue Trap Pierced (Onyx) (just yum)
.ARISE. Lip Drool (with resizer) [I edited this, moving it from the lips to the tip of the tongue] (last seen at Fi*Friday)
-[aka SU!] Suicidal Unborn!- Silent Eyes Haze (old gift)
-Glam Affair – Skye II – Jamaica 01 NB (not new)
[RUBY] – DOOMED PRINCESS BLOOD ROSES FACE TATTOO (n/a)
NOX. Smut Lip [Red]
Nox. Beauty Marks [Four]
antielle. Smeared Makeup (Black Mascara)
.random.Matter. – Misery Brows

Buddy
Katatonik, Plague Doctor (past gacha)

Poses
pose 1: ZZANG, Pin up Doll pack
pose 2: estetica, Pinup Pack
pose 3: Olive Juice, Gamer con pack (not available)

Settings
pic 3 Adorkable Poses, My Padded Room (n/a)
Doomed Ship Medical Bay

Well suited

frugging No, Anorak is not doing the frug. She’s skating, thanks to the magic of Alyx Aerallo’s Street Skater poses for Grafica. She’s wearing an adorable new leisure ensemble from R2 A/D/E for Collabor88. This month you can choose from three, rather than two, ways of flashing, or not flashing, or kindof flashing, your av’s nipples. There’s also a choice of shorts, transparent or opaque. Don’t think I’ve let you down by covering everything up… Continue reading

Tentacular powers

new cene “I also insist that we need a name for the dynamic ongoing sym-chthonic forces and powers of which people are a part, within which ongoingness is at stake. Maybe, but only maybe, and only with intense commitment and collaborative work and play with other terrans, flourishing for rich multispecies assemblages that include people will be possible. I am calling all this the Chthulucene—past, present, and to come. These real and possible timespaces are not named after SF writer H.P. Lovecraft’s misogynist racial-nightmare monster Cthulhu (note spelling difference), but rather after the diverse earth-wide tentacular powers and forces and collected things with names like Naga, Gaia, Tangaroa (burst from water-full Papa), Terra, Haniyasu-hime, Spider Woman, Pachamama, Oya, Gorgo, Raven, A’akuluujjusi, and many many more. ‘My’ Chthulucene, even burdened with its problematic Greek-ish tendrils, entangles myriad temporalities and spatialities and myriad intra-active entities-in-assemblages—including the more-than-human, other-than-human, inhuman, and human-as-humus. Even rendered in an American English-language text like this one, Naga, Gaia, Tangaroa, Medusa, Spider Woman, and all their kin are some of the many thousand names proper to a vein of SF that Lovecraft could not have imagined or embraced—namely, the webs of speculative fabulation, speculative feminism, science fiction, and scientific fact.”
Donna Haraway, “Anthropocene, Capitalocene, Plantationocene, Chthulucene: Making Kin,” 2015

Credits
Storybook – Chasm – Huntar – Mait/SlinkPhys/Isis/Venus (former Fantasy Faire donation item)
/Wasabi Pills/ Thyra Mesh Hair (former Fantasy Faire donation item)
-Glam Affair – Sasha skin – India 01 (past gacha)
antielle. appetizer / bites and blood
antielle. Dissolved Tears (past gacha)
[theSkinnery] Huntress Markings – Eye Wound and Tired of Fighting
Maitreya Mesh Body – Lara V3.5
Izzie’s – Body & Face Waterdrops
Luas, Amor Cuff Anklet Golden
[theSkinnery] Sona eyes – 8
pose: Olive Juice, Defying Gravity pack n/a
shot at Innsmouth