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Thursday, September 28, 2017

Try this

Given the tone of some of the commentary I've seen, heard, read, etc. about the "anthem issue" .......not just here, but among people locally, in the news, gradually became very clear that there is a huge disconnect between those unsympathetic to the protesters and the protesters themselves. I have already stated my position that the NFL has every right to impose whatever rules it wants on their employees, but there is certainly more to this than patriotism or the lack thereof. To illustrate this disconnect, I am going to weave a short, fictional narrative. Picture this:

You work for X Company, which overall is a pretty decent place to work, and have produced good results for them, but for the past few months your boss, Mr. Y, has singled you out for very unfair treatment. He has even privately told you that, while your work is fine, he just doesn't like you or 'your kind' and while he can't legally fire you, he is going to do whatever he can to get you to leave. You have tried to inform HR, but your complaints haven't been taken seriously. Mr. Y has been very good about hiding his agenda and has a lot of backing from his peers. If you could, you would quit.... but you need this job.

One day, you find out that the office staff is having a party for Mr. Y to celebrate a promotion. Since it is at the office, you are sort of obliged to attend.....but when everyone starts to sing "For He's a Jolly Good Fellow",  you don't scream, or curse, or throw cake, but rather meander to the back of the room and remain silent. I mean after all, you KNOW Mr. Y is not the 'jolly good fellow' others may think he is.

Co-workers who have never been mistreated by Mr. Y and have prospered under his leadership, notice and berate you, "hey! Why aren't you singing? Mr. Y is our boss and he's been very good to us. You are an ungrateful employee and don't appreciate what you have!"

Mr. Y overhears your shaming and just smiles knowingly. Afterwards your co-workers continue to shun your company......even though you've done nothing wrong at your job, have been treated unfairly in turn, and just felt it would be hypocritical to sing along with everyone else. You must be a terrible person.

There. Now someone might say that had the victim in this case just sung the damned song, everything would have been fine........but would it? The issue in my story is not that the victim hates the song......and this current issue is NOT about hating the flag. It's fine to feel as a 'paying customer' that you'd rather not see political statements of any kind inserted into your entertainment.......but that is a different issue. 

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

My views

Yesterday I posted about the "anthem" controversy......but only in terms of my appreciation for its ability to get people (who might not otherwise do so) talking about various issues regarding "free speech". Today I am going to briefly give my own opinions on the issues this controversy (which doesn't seem to be going away) has raised. 

First there is the actual rationale for the whole kneeling thing; violent racism within law enforcement. Emotionally, one can look at this any way their personal beliefs point them....but a perusal of the statistics tend to support the assertion. The issue of racism in this country is complex and there is a lot of counter-productive rhetoric and behavior all around. But at the end of the day, if innocent people from one group in particular, tend to end up dead with any sort of frequency......there is a legitimate concern and cause for protest.

(Just as a related fact.....a while back I visited a historic prison. There was a lot of information there that surprised me about the history of criminal justice in America, but besides seeing a statistic that revealed that we incarcerate more people per capita than any other country, BY FAR, the other most startling statistic was the disproportionate frequency for which people of color are imprisoned for the exact same crimes as white people. This is not a matter of a total number of more crimes, this is looking at the same number of the same crimes and then looking at the incarceration rate. Odds are, if you do X and are black, you are exponentially more likely to be imprisoned than if you do X and are white. And that is not anecdotal. Race definitely plays a part in how our criminal justice system sees and treats you.)

-Should a paid athlete be allowed to use their own public sporting event to highlight a political issue? Honestly? It's up to the owners and leagues. Sports are essentially businesses that are privately owned. As such, the owner has the legal right to say, "my company, my rules". An awful lot of businesses restrict open displays of a political nature on the job. Sometimes they do this so that their customers are not confronted with political views that might deter their patronage, other times it is policy to maintain workplace harmony, and other times it is just the personal decision of the head of the company. And an owner could also permit political expressions.....particularly if they feel that curbing these expressions would be bad for business.

I worked for a company that restricted any expression of a political view that was not corporately endorsed. I'm sure others do or have as well. It's a legal fact of business. Athletes are no exception. As paid employees, they are subject to the same restrictions if their bosses impose them as anyone else. It is only the fact that they are so publicly 'high profile' that I believe the owners in this case feel it is smarter to just let them have these little moments rather than cause a controversy......the way Trump's remarks did.

-Are simpler political statements OK (like wearing a ribbon or emblem)......but not ones that revolve around flags/anthems? Or are flags and anthems the ideal place to focus attention on things that may be wrong in the country? To me it's all the same. Imbuing inanimate objects or rituals with too much power never leads to anything good. As many of you know, I am a huge fan of early American history.....with a living room that looks like an homage to the era of the Constitution and its authors.....but......I also grew up in a time when Vietnam protesters were burning the flag and Olympic medalists raised "Black Power" fists during the anthem and were stripped (initially) of their medals. So taking a knee seems trivial in comparison. 

And to Dan's point in his comment yesterday, these 'gestures' are somewhat useless. But people seem to love shit like this. Unless you are actually, physically storming the bastille with torches and pitchforks.....or at least contributing money towards the effort.....kneeling, raising a fist, or wearing a colored ribbon isn't going to do much.

-How free should "free speech" be? Very free. The trouble is just about everyone I know agrees with the sentiment......but not the practice. It reminds me of something I used to tell people about the schmaltzy platitude: "be yourself". I always insisted that when people say that, what they really mean is: "be long as it is what I expect you to be."

The same is true for 'free speech'. I have seen countless interviews with people who insist that they believe in free speech and then went on to explain why some group they were protesting should not be allowed to say what they were saying.

-Is 'patriotism' supporting one's country no matter what? or acknowledging the bad and trying to change it? Anyone who knows me at all will guess which sentiment I embrace......which is the same one our Founding Fathers believed in and legislated to protect.

-Should a president make the sort of commentary Trump has made about this issue?
Even the president is entitled to be an asshole law. So he can make remarks like this. But the question is: should he? And to that, my answer is "no". 

I read an article yesterday that quoted a Tweet from Trump dating back to the Obama era where Trump criticized him for a comment he made suggesting that the Washington Redskins change their name. In it Trump said that the president should be focused on more important things. Fast-forward to the present. Not only is he divisive, but he's a blatant hypocrite.

-From the 'Trump perspective' this really about the anthem and kneeling, or is this a tactic of diversion......or of division? Worse, is it merely about disrupting an organization he personally doesn't like? I can't say for sure, but this current vent seems no more or less suspicious than any other from him. Meaning there are plenty of clues to suggest this is a diversionary tactic, or one of pandering to a base, or even just an attack on an organization he personally dislikes. What I do NOT believe it genuine. And that belief is based on the lack of any similar precedent being genuine.

I say this because, despite past remarks having 'grains of truth' within them........they are never delivered in anything but an obvious antagonistic, bombastic fashion. Assume a similar opinion as Trump's on this 'kneeling issue' and imagine a president saying this: "While it troubles me that we continue to struggle with racism in our country, and while I fully support any safe and lawful demonstration designed to address injustice, I am also of the belief that there is a time and a place for everything. Public protests are sanctioned by our laws, but there are times people just want to enjoy some form of recreation and it is unnecessary to imbue these times with personal politics.....especially when those being confronted with these protests have paid their money for something else and the gestures being employed to make these points can appear disrespectful....even if that is not their intent. Businesses have always retained the right to protect their customers from unwanted controversy, and perhaps this would be a good time for the NFL to decide if their games are the proper venue for personal political expressions. In the end it is their choice, but sometimes people just want to relax so that once refreshed they can address the other important issues that face us in other venues." See? It can be done. But instead our Bully-in-Chief opted to deride, curse, and suggest extreme retribution.....and in the process, pander to a base that loves its symbols, and is not terribly sympathetic to the plight of people of color. If Trump said what I wrote, I might believe he was just about separating politics from entertainment......but he didn't. Instead he chose to be intentionally divisive.

-Are we a hopelessly divided country, separated by race, ideology, and wealth? I used to just believe 'divided' but not 'hopelessly divided'. Now, however, I am of the opinion that the extent and bases for this division are too vast and entrenched to ever change.

So those are my views on all of this. Comments are welcome as always.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Thinking is good

The stereotype of the jock has always accentuated brawn over brain. And yet, while teased over not knowing the most basic things about science, history, math, literature, art, or music, no one can deny that sports fans actually do possess sufficient intelligence to memorize the most obscure stats, facts, and game strategies. So it's not that jocks or sports fans are stupid.....they just choose to focus their minds on the minutia related to balls of various shapes, sizes, and colors rather than other things.

It is because of this that I actually appreciate the most recent "anthem" controversy. For me, it has made something of no interest (sports) interesting.....and it has forced people who rarely think beyond "who should be traded for whom" or "who ran for the most yards in 1973" or "pass me another Coors light" to ponder some important issues. And that is a good thing.

(I figured given the nature of this blog, I should at least toss in some visual that incorporates discipline. And this may well be the first time I've posted a M/m image. LOL)

It doesn't really matter where a person stands on this most recent issue... a protest against violent racism, particularly within law enforcement in a country that touts equality, because the controversy is no longer about that single issue. Now it encompasses several:

-Should a paid athlete be allowed to use their own public sporting event to highlight a political issue?

-Are simpler political statements OK (like wearing a ribbon or emblem)......but not ones that revolve around flags/anthems? Or are flags and anthems the ideal place to focus attention on things that may be wrong in the country?

-How free should "free speech" be?

-Is 'patriotism' supporting one's country no matter what? or acknowledging the bad and trying to change it?

-Should a president make the sort of commentary Trump has made about this issue?

-From the 'Trump perspective' this really about the anthem and kneeling, or is this a tactic of diversion......or of division? Worse, is it merely about disrupting an organization he personally doesn't like?

-Are we a hopelessly divided country, separated by race, ideology, and wealth?

Personally, I have a view on all of these, but expressing that view is not what this post is about. Instead, I am just happy to see the tailgate crowd finally thinking and talking about something important. Thinking is good. Thanks, Donald. 

Thursday, September 21, 2017


.......from a werewolf:

Wolfman Joe (before)

"Hello, I'm Wolfman Joe. I know it's not even October yet, but if you take Halloween seriously, you need to start getting ready now. Take me for example. I first became a werewolf just last year.....and it was a very last-minute transformation. And, as you can see from the picture above, I did not start out being the kind of werewolf I truly wished to be. I was just too new to the role.

"Some people think all you need to become a terrifying werewolf is to be born the seventh son of a seventh son.....with a pentagram emblazoned in your palm. Or maybe just get bit by another werewolf....if you can find one.  But I'm here to tell you becoming a truly scary werewolf in the era of Planned Parenthood is not as simple as just taking a stroll on the moors. I mean, hell, we don't even have moors in New Jersey. It takes effort.

"Just look at me. Yeah, I had the fangs and hair, but I still sort of looked like you could get me to leave you alone just by tossing me a dog biscuit and saying, 'here ya go, boy'. Pathetic. Where is the panty-wetting terror? Where is the sense of impending doom? 

"No, I knew I needed to up my I started by strengthening my core.

"Once I no longer had the spine of a bedroom valet, I knew I was on my way to becoming more than a furry coat rack. Next I needed some claws. Last year I was just a head peeking up over the back of a chair with nary a claw in sight. What kind of werewolf attacks with his hands in his pockets? No, I needed hands. So I got these....

"But even these paws needed some work. They were meant to be worn like gloves and I had no fingers. They also needed to be poseable and they needed something better than a cheesy spray paint job in China. And....... from all that time in my pockets, it only made sense that my palms be hairy too. I got ALL of that...... and more! And now? Now I'm nearly ready to do some serious eviscerating.

Wolfman Joe (after)

"Isn't that scarier?! I'm huge! I'm buff! Hell, I'm hulking out of my shirt! I have very little extra now to do for Halloween....just a few tweaks.....and a better location. Maybe I can practice my howling?

"So, if YOU want people to fear that you might tear out their innards for a moonlit dinner......take the necessary steps now! Halloween will be here before you know it!"

 ---------------sincerely, Wolfman Joe

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Pet peeve or just weird?

There are a lot of things in spanking photos that can drive me crazy........or at least prompt me to shake my head. I've covered some of them before, but today I'm gong to concentrate on one that I REALLY would love an answer to: what's up with those shoes on an otherwise naked spankee?

Look at these heels! Could the disciplinarian not just have waited the extra minute for these to be removed? But take a gander at the Top. She's not dressed in fetish or glam.....and yet check out those red pumps! Somebody on this shoot is into heels!

It's bad enough that standard porn shots do this all of the time, but spanking shots too? And it's not just the glam shots either. Even relatively average ladies in seemingly domestic settings engage in this:

I guess these boots are made for spanking?

And it's not just a youth-thing! Mature victims keep those shoes on as well.......

Sometimes I think the photographers use shoes as a sort of 'partial costume' to remind the viewer "who" the victim is. A good example of this is the punished "schoolgirl". And here's a whole line-up:
On one hand, everyone wants to see those nubile cuties all nice and naked.....BUT we also have to keep that 'schoolgirl' image going, so what better way than to let them keep their uniform socks and shoes on? ( Don't those shoes just utterly convince you that these are girls in a school? LOL)

But shoes are not always a uniform or clue. So why are they there after everything else has been stripped off? And it doesn't matter who the spanker is. They can be male......

He probably couldn't figure out how to get them off.

....or female:
"Owww, but black goes with everything!"

"I'll know you've had enough when those fall off."

...or more maternal:

"Those are my pumps, young lady...........and I'm going to keep spanking you until you 
give them back to me!"

Hell, sometimes the spanker can even be in full 'Domme regalia' and their victim's shoes are still staying put:

This shot is a bit silly on more levels than just shoe-wearing.....but if you are shooting for 'ridiculous', you may as well add shoes (and socks) to the list.

But the best is when both spanker and spankee are naked....or nearly naked.....and those damned shoes are still on!

Shots like this just make me laugh!

So what is up with this? OK, it's not 100%......but as you can see, it's frequent enough to have to be intentional. Do people find this sexy? Do the models have ugly feet that need to be hidden? Did the model initially remove her shoes only to have everyone on the shoot think someone opened a bag of Dorito's? What the hell is it? I realize this is not a new thing:
This trend goes back a bit for sure. (And don't you just love the rifle stock visible in the upper right corner? You don't see that anymore. I guess she's lucky she's just being hand-spanked!)

Maybe it's the shoes themselves. I've always heard that women love shoes. Perhaps even naked women still can't resist shoes?

It seems that this young lady can't. 

The ONLY time you don't see shoes on an otherwise naked spankee, seems to be when that victim is male! And here I thought it was women who were more prone to wanting to go around barefoot?

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Lady Marta: Disciplinarian

Two of my favorite ladies, Ladies Marta & Nickki, having some fun.

Various photos are still trickling in. I thought for sure someone snapped a shot of me getting swatted by "Lady Marta" in the stocks.....but Rosa told me that she doesn't think anyone caught that. However, yesterday I got this shot of Lady Marta giving Lady Nickki a nice swat! (I love both of their costumes too!)

Throughout the day, various guests always seem to find a way to get a few smacks from my neighbor. And when I plan out the Quest for the Holy Grail, the first "trial" is an archery task wherein a plastic apple must be shot off the head of William the Younger using up to 8 arrows. The team being tested must appoint both an archer and a "hostage" who is then imprisoned in the stocks. For every arrow that misses....Lady Marta delivers a swat to the hostage. If all 8 miss, she adds a penalty of an extra 4, a little harder than the first 8, for an even dozen. So at the very least, Marta gets to whack one member of each team a bit. 

There are other challenges and dares that sometimes result in a trip to Lady Marta's stocks as well. As for me? I announced at the beginning of the faire that since I had escaped Lady Marta last year, anyone could come up and ring a bell we have in the yard to give the go ahead for me to 'get it' from Lady Marta to make up for it. As soon as I said it, Rosa strode right up and rang the bell, and Lady Marta gleefully delivered several good swats......only she insisted on using the nasty wooden spoon with my name on it instead of the milder leather slapper!

I didn't get a lot of swats, but the ones she gave me definitely stung! Hopefully I'll get a shot from someone at some point showing Lady Marta dealing out her 'justice' to someone actually in the stocks. I know a lot of shots were taken of different guests at different times, but I don't know who has what. And in conclusion I wanted to add this year's shot of me and Lady Rosa:

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Outdoor discipline

As I await a few more RenFaire photos, I thought it was about time to get back to some more DD-themed posts. Besides being associated in my mind with RenFaires, September has always reminded me of camping. I don't camp anymore due to my back and the fact that Rosa seems willing but not enthusiastic. Recently we went on a NJ trek of waterfalls and spent some time in Stokes Forest State Park, one of my favorite campgrounds. 

Rosa found it better than she thought and we discussed possibly trying a simple overnight to see how things go. 

One of the things I am used to from past relationships that I have not done with Rosa, is the outdoor spanking. When I was in my late 20's I used to joke that I had been spanked or switched in just about every campground in the state......and one in NY! It was actually rare to go camping and NOT end up with a striped butt. Episodes of this nature inspired this old drawing of mine:

This was actually a position I found myself  in a number of times.

One very memorable episode in my past was supposed to take place on a camping trip, but due to EVERYTHING going awry, the actual 'spanking' took place indoors after the trip ended. (You can read about that episode here. Just click.)

My fond memories of Stokes Forest were also the impetus and setting for my story, "The Woman of the Well" and this illustration which I drew especially for it:

This picture might make it look like the poor boy is the terrorized captive of some sadistic park ranger......but nothing could be further from the truth. Read it and see. 

"The Woman of the Well" (you can read it by clicking here) is one of my favorite stories and is pretty long. And if any of you out there are familiar with Stokes Forest, it won't take a lot of effort to realize the similarities....other than the house with the well...between the campground in the story and Stokes.

So do any of you have a juicy 'outdoor spanking' story to tell?

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

More Faire-ness

I'm still waiting for some pictures to come in from other sources.....especially the one of me getting whacked in the stocks by Lady Marta! But in the meantime, here are a few with 'people' in them:

Faces obscured, this is my daughter and her friend sitting around the table of castle blocks later in the evening. That's my drinking vessel in the right foreground.

My usurper brother...the Black Knight....pretender to the crown.

Lady Ana face-painting my niece....

...and preparing to duel atop the balance beam.

It's good to be the king! That's me.....flail on the rug at the ready should any challenge my rule.

Monday, September 11, 2017


Well the 2017 RenFaire has ended and other than some minor (and I mean minor ) hitches, it was a rousing success! I even managed to participate much more this year, rather than spend all of my 'party time' coordinating events. And, as promised, I got pictures this year. For the sake of this post, I will just share the shots of the unpopulated shire.....before guests arrived and partook of the various offerings. Here are a few highlights:

One overview of the entrance to the "Villa Alava".

Beneath the shaded arbor, a crest depicting Rosa's actual family crest coupled with my invented family crest, based on my last name.

Another crest.....that of my daughter.....and her husband.

Our museum of 'artifacts' from the neighboring and perpetually feuding shires of  Ochershire and Azurton.

The gaming area, for dueling in various forms!

The Royal Throne, crown, and scepter. But before sitting upon it, you must prove yourself worthy.....

....and pull forth the sword from the stone and anvil.

And for those in need of chastisement.....Lady Marta's Stocks. You can see her leather slapper hanging from the one side. (the axe is for very serious offences and fortunately has never had to be used. Makes a nice warning though.)

The Arthurian-themed cups of Grail tasks.

Our tennis ball-firing mangonel.

And our Torvald Drumpf effigy that one could do battle with and or otherwise abuse. (He is shown here post-party with the broken fragments of his chest plate about his feet.)

Besides Torvald, the only other participant who probably did not have a good time was poor William Tell the Younger.

In my next post I will show some of the events as they unfolded with our guests......(with some of the faces obscured for polite anonymity). 

Monday, September 4, 2017

RenFaire Captions

While I can't invite my online readers to the upcoming RenFaire, I can let you in on some of the fun. One of the things we do is let guests write in captions for various 'period' images. One of the images I'm using this year is this:

It's too bad my ponds don't have any frogs around this year.

Anyway, even though I have a reputation for hating captions, that's not really true. (In fact I contribute to Hermione's weekly caption post almost every week) No, I just hate forced "everything has to be about kink" captions when a simpler and funnier one would be much more entertaining. So, if anyone would like to take a shot at our princess and frog, by all means show us what you got! Here's my contribution to start things off:

Princess: "You are cute and all...... but I just don't know."
Frog: "That's the trouble with being a frog. I can be 100% STD-free and you people still think they're going to get warts."

From Hands63:

Princess: "Kiss you, I don't think so"

Frog: "Come on babe, what have you got to lose. You know what they say, once you go frog, you'll read about it on everyone's blog

From Merry:

"PRINCESS: So thrilled to meeteth thou King Frog! What a large staff thou hast! How much dost 't groweth? 

FROG: Nearly as long and thick as a log, mine princess, and thou shalt squeal in delight at its strength! 

Who's next?

Saturday, September 2, 2017

One more week!

Speaking of older photo files.....I came across this old RenFaire photo from 2 years ago:

Me and "Lady Rosa" of the Villa Alava, in our backyard. (Last year I wore something different that I will be using again this year. And to any Python fans: yes that is a ceramic rendition of the Terry Gilliam 'Holy Grail'.)

So as of today, the RenFaire  is one week away and my only concern at this point is one 'uncontrollable'! This is not an event that can simply be moved indoors if it rains. But weather aside things have progressed nicely. The games have been concocted and the 2017 clues and dares printed and stashed away.

I will be setting up more of the yard as this week progresses.....and like I promised...THIS TIME I WILL TAKE PICTURES!