Purveyor of Pleasure

Pleasure is my business, my life, my joy, my purpose.

Tag: fnord (Page 2 of 3)

Interaction


From someecards.

I tend to live in my head more than anywhere else, which can make it difficult to meet new people. I obsess over making good impressions so I often don’t say much when meeting someone for the first time and end up coming off either as shy or disinterested (and I think the latter more than the former). I generally prefer to observe others before engaging in conversation with them, as well, which doesn’t help.

The point being, I’m kind of terrible at meeting new people, and I’m kind of terrible at communication in general, I think. Writing is the way I communicate best, and I believe in communication with friends and lovers. I believe that it’s important, but sometimes it’s so damn difficult for me to get anything out.

This post was originally going to be about flirting, or my inability to flirt, but instead it’s evolved into interaction and communication in general, though also about flirting.

I think both my lack of flirting and communication abilities both stem from the same place: I’m afraid of my words being taken the wrong way, and sometimes I’m afraid of my words being taken the right way and my advances or assertions being unwanted or incorrect.

Everyone has these fears to an extent, but some have them more than others. I always admire the people who can speak their mind and who seem to have little disregard for what others think of them. I’m not that person, although I often wish I was. I care too much about what people think of me, and it pains me when someone dislikes me for whatever reason.

I came out as queer at a young age. I was the founder and president of my high school’s GSA and very out. I watched straight or even bi female friends of mine flirt with other girls, snuggle with them, kiss them, all the while wishing I could experience that but holding myself at arms length in fear of what they would think of me. I desired closeness in a friendly way, without any sexual overtones, just snuggling and exploration, but I was afraid if I attempted to join in they would think I was hitting on them.

It made me guarded, careful of what I said, worried at every turn that someone would take something I said the wrong way. I collapsed into myself and didn’t share that connection with anyone around me. I didn’t know many queer girls, and the ones I did had boyfriends or just generally weren’t interested, so that wasn’t something I could explore with them either.

The point of all this is I don’t think I know how to interact with others in a good way, and more and more I choose not to interact and to crawl deeper and deeper into my own fears and frustrations. The problem really is that I don’t know how to get out of it, and further that I’m afraid to try to get out of it because that could mean ruin.

Often, too, if I get close to someone I sabotage it by overanalyzing and becoming anxious about the interactions. I cherish some of the friendships I’ve made online, but they all seem temporary, and I know that’s mostly my fault.

I love Onyx but we are not enough for each other, we both need other friends and lovers to be in our lives. We’ve gone out and met people here, but nowhere near as much as we should have by now. Every time we go somewhere it’s a struggle because I push against it, even though I know that once we go out I will enjoy myself. I can’t seem to help my automatic aversion to the outside world.

It’s ironic, maybe, that the things I want the most–simple interaction, closeness, friends–are maybe the most difficult things for me to allow myself to get.

Settling In

I have many drafts in the works, but I can’t seem to publish them for one reason or another. Either I can’t bring myself to work on them to completion, or I just don’t think they’re okay enough to be posted, well, those are kind of the same thing. I’ve had many opportunities to write lately, but I’ve been choosing not to. Mostly I think I’m scared of saying the wrong thing. I haven’t really posed anything worthwhile since everything on TFG happened.

So, what? I don’t know.

Part of settling in to a new city and getting used to it is going out in it. This is a city I actually enjoy going out in, with or without money, unlike the previous one. It’s been nice to actually be somewhere there is somewhat of a nightlife.

Though we’ve been staying in a lot too, doing the usual things like applying for jobs and being generally addicted to ForumWarz. We’ve stayed in to the point of feeling cooped up, and we’ve spent almost entire days out of the house, just balances out.

I’m a bit of a mess right now, so I apologize.

Anyone know an awesome place to work in Seattle that’s hiring? I applied at The Love Zone which was much nicer than their website, and I’m hoping to get it.

My father and his girlfriend will be coming down and over this weekend, then we will be heading to a family gathering of sorts, so I’m hoping to write some things early that will post this weekend.

I have so much in the works, and I’ll get it out soon. I have quite a few reviews I need to get done, so I’m hoping that will motivate me to write other things, like this smut story I’ve been working on for weeks now…

Happy Christmas!

Like many families, my family doesn’t celebrate Christmas from a Christian standpoint, mostly from a cultural standpoint. None of us are really Christian, per se. Christmas music is huge in our house, however, mostly because of my mother, the rest of us like it for the most part (possibly because it’s one of those family things since mom plays it all the time around Christmas time) but we don’t do as much listening as she does.

Since Christmas music is so big in my family I thought I would share with you my favorite Christmas song. It’s not terribly well-known (read: not overplayed). I usually listen to The Carpenters version of it, but I found the Frank Sinatra version of it on YouTube and thought I’d share that.

It is The Christmas Waltz.

Happy Christmas to all you who celebrate it, religiously or culturally. Happy Hanukkah, Happy Solstice (a few days ago), Happy Holidays to all, and may New Years bring you all the happiness and gifts that you desire.

Socializing and Me

I’ve realized lately just how far the extent of my lack of desire to socialize goes. Of course, it’s highly dependent on my mood, and I’ve been rather down lately, mostly because of lacking a job and the inability to get one, having no one want me basically, which really gets my abandonment and rejection issues to the forefront. When I get in these modes I just want to curl up in bed and forget about the rest of the world, which for me usually includes either a book or the internet or some combination thereof.

Though I haven’t forgotten about the rest of the world exactly, either. We went to the local protest here yesterday, and I was happy to know that there were marches like ours going around all across the nation in every state. I was proud to be a part of it, but I did have to force myself to go, because the idea of being with so many people was a little daunting. Once we were there, though, it was fantastic, and it helped me remember why I need a community, but it also made me remember that I’m not a part of the community here.

I’ve been a highly active member of the queer community since I was in high school, but I’ve been absent from my community for a long time, and even now I’m debating getting into it because I know that we are going to leave soon. I don’t want to make friends with new people at this point because I know that we are going to go to (probably) Seattle in just a few months and I hate leaving friends behind. We’re already leaving behind too many friends when we move, I don’t want to add to that number.

At the same time, I crave friendship, which is part of why I’m online so much, I think, why I write in here so much, because I’m trying to create relationships with you, because they’re at least somewhat sustainable. However, the more I think about it, I’m still very guarded and I don’t reach out as much as I want to. This is common for me, but it’s also not a conscious choice, it’s just something that I do.

After my interview for a Sundance Film Festival box office position on Friday I wanted to call and talk with someone about it, so I called Onyx, who was busy taking a certification test and was unable to answer the phone. I went through the phonebook on my phone and realized that the only other person I was comfortable calling was my mom, and she would be busy at work at that time of day. So I didn’t call anyone.

I hope to expand that list of people I can just call whenever something is upsetting me or bothering me or I just want to talk once we move. I’m sure there are others I could have called, in fact I know there were. I could have called my sister, Kat, a couple friends in California, or a few others, but I rank people in my mind who I can and can’t just talk to and, more specifically, whine to.

I do it here too, I categorize what is and isn’t appropriate by how personal it is. Sex and sexuality is definitely personal, but it’s not the same as exposing my emotions and vulnerability. I can be emotionally detached from my gender and sexuality talk, even though it is very personal, because I can categorize it as an academic discussion rather than anything sensitive.

I have a strange sense of what is or isn’t appropriate to post here, and really I should be able to post just about everything here, and I am able to but I definitely censor myself sometimes, and it may just be time to stop.

Kinky vs. Queer vs. Straight Sex

Something I’ve been thinking of a lot lately has been the differences between “types” of sex and sexual intimacy and encounters. It’s something that both The Leather Daddy and the Femme and PoMoSexuals made me think about a lot, because they both talked about male-female sexual interaction in a non-straight or non-hetero way. They recognized that males and females can interact sexually with each other in a queer way.

One of the main purposes of queer theory is actually to highlight and embrace the fact that no sex is normal/vanilla/straight, or, really, the opposite is emphasized: that all sex is queer. Very little aside from heterosexual missionary for-procreation-only sex is considered acceptable by our fucked up society, while the majority of people have sex that could not be categorized within that extremely narrow social definition.

Granted, ideas of acceptable sexuality have been evolving lately, but I wouldn’t say other types of sex have become any more acceptable, they’re just recognized as “what everyone does” which isn’t exactly an endorsement, though I’ll admit that my vision on this may be skewed by the last two years living in Utah. However, I really don’t think it’s just Utah talking.

So what’s the big difference between queer sex and straight sex? Aside from the usual definition of the sex of the partners (but that also brings into question is it the sex or the gender that matters?) it’s subtle, and may have a lot to do with intention. Can queer hetero sex include missionary sex? I say of course! The wonderful thing about the orbit(/label) queer is that it is very open to interpretation.

Most often the participants of queer sex are queer people, but that brings into the question of what makes someone a queer person. I’d argue that anyone outside of the norm of society is queer in some way, although not everyone would see it that same way. Queer is an important label for same-sex/gender-loving people to embrace, definitely, but I also think queer moves beyond that label as well.

If we define queer as what it’s not, meaning not normal, just about everyone would be able to be labeled queer. I’m not sure if I’ve ever met a normal person in my life, society perpetuates this idea of normalcy, but that doesn’t mean it exists anywhere, and usually those who think they are normal would not be considered normal by others, so where does that leave us?

Personally I dislike the term ‘normal’ for a variety of reasons, including the fact I have a degree in Psychology, but also because I have never believed that normal exists. People are just too damn individualistic for anyone to fit into a stereotypically cookie cutter image of what we are told we should be. Granted, this is a very western concept.

Back to queer sex vs. straight sex: personally I believe there is a different feeling to queer sex than there is to straight sex (though I try not to have straight sex at all, but every once in a while my sex slips into the realm of less-queer). Queer sex just feels a little, well, queer. It feels subversive and non-normal, even if it is normal to us and our bodies and desires. That’s not to say that there is anything wrong with non-normal, quite the contrary, I think it’s necessary.

Queer sex, to me, can happen between people of any sex or gender. The times I feel my sex is slipping into less-queer territory are those instances when Onyx and I have had quickie sex in nearly missionary position (I say nearly because my legs are up and not flat) with little foreplay and sometimes little attention paid to me. This has only happened infrequently, and usually when we’re both tired but wanting sex. I consider it far from the queerer sex we have which includes toys, various positions, or me fucking him rather than him fucking me.

That’s not to say that just anyone who doesn’t have missionary sex is having queer sex, although that is one possible definition. As I mentioned above I believe there has to be some sort of queer intent, though that is a very broad topic and definition. Also, I think queer sex must also occur between queer people, though that definition is also very broad and open to interpretation.

Now to throw kinky sex into the mix. Kinky sex can be defined in a similar way to queer sex in that it can be defined by what it isn’t, and what it isn’t is vanilla, or normal, but see my dialogue about normalcy? Is there really any such thing? What do we consider to be not kinky?

Perhaps I should define kinky in a way other than exclusion, though I’m not sure how to do that because it is also subtle and it depends entirely on perspective and personal definition. I posit that just as most people could be deemed queer due to having anything other than narrowly-defined non-queer sex that most people could be deemed kinky for having anything other than narrowly-defined non-kinky sex.

That, or we just need to get rid of these labels all together, but that brings me to another theory on labels: that we must define them then broaden them in order to be able to abolish them, so perhaps that’s what I’m working on doing right now!

And what about the quote in the image above? Is anything you do really only kinky the first time, because after you do it that desensitizes you to it, making you think less of the kink factor of it and more of the enjoyment of it? That makes sense in some ways, and it’s been my experience that people tend to measure others against their own experiences rather than the so-called “normal” experience expectation.

However, what constitutes kinky sex? For some it would be using toys and props such as dildos, vibrators, restraints, or blindfolds; for others it would be engaging in “extreme” activities such as S&m, D/s, watersports, or enemas; for others threesomes, foursomes, and moresomes are kinky. Just like queer sex, there is a wide range of what could be considered kinky sex, and it all depends on the person putting that label on it. I do believe that kinky sex has an intention behind it, just like queer sex does, but it is also just as difficult to pin down.

What I’m trying to say is that there are definitely differences between these three “types” of sexual interaction, and none of them are better or worse than others as long as you are interacting the way you enjoy and desire to interact. I’m not saying that straight sex is bad, though I do wonder how many people actually have it. I am saying that more people have queer sex than most people may think, but I’m also saying that labels and definitions such as queer and kinky are difficult to pin-down, and perhaps shouldn’t be pinned down.

Semantics: In General

Hello merry readers, guest blogger Onyx back with a small piece I’ve been meaning to write for a while on the subject of semantics.

Those of you who’ve followed this blog for a while knows that Semantics is something that Scarlet often brings up, both through her Semantic Sunday posts, as well as her many posts about labels and identity and the difficulty she often faces trying to explain herself and her ideas to others.

In a couple recent posts Scarlet has done an excellent job discussing labels, their use, their limitations and why she’s a fan of them. I’m going to expand on this and offer some reasons why I feel that labels so often are misused or downright abused and some ways I feel we can remediate this.

I do not claim to be the originator of the ideas and concepts I will discuss. They were thought up by greater minds than mine and all I can hope to do is to communicate them in a clear and understandable manner. My main influence comes from the school of General Semantics, originally espoused by Count Alfred Korzybski and elaborated upon by writers I respect greatly such as Robert Anton Wilson, as well as ones I hold in much lower regard such as L. Ron Hubbard.

To go into depth about all aspects of General Semantics would require a book, or perhaps a number of books. Briefly speaking it can be said to be a discipline dedicated to increasing awareness of how our use of language informs our thoughts and ideas, especially what one might call “common sense assumptions.” Korzybski taught that words always seem to fail to fully describe any situation, object or action and sought to help us avoid the linguistic traps and manipulations we’re all too often subjected to.

Perhaps this can best be described by one of General Semantics’ key phrases “The map is not the territory. The word is not the thing defined.” Our language is unable to ever describe anything in a comprehensive way; instead we describe various aspects of something, small bits and pieces of the whole.

One of the most dangerous aspects of language Korzybski warned is any variation of the verb to be, to say that anything is anything makes us to grossly oversimplify reality and leads us into dangerous thinking. To illustrate let’s look at stereotypes and prejudices that most of us will have observed at one point or another.

“Black people are criminals”
“The Irish are hard drinkers”
“Queers are immoral perverts.”

Feel free to exchange these for your favorite stereotypes if you wish. The point is that these stereotypes gain their power from the verb to be. Statements such as these assign labels to groups in an absolute manner that grossly oversimplifies reality. Sure we can find partial truths in such statements; we can’t deny that some black people commit Illegal acts, or that some queers violate SOME people’s standards of morality, but the oversimplification forced upon us by the verb to begets in the way of a more detailed and accurate understanding

Any description of an object will vary based on circumstance and time, and if we can train ourselves to recognize this we can avoid the largely emotional responses often triggered by this particular linguistic trap. If we can translate the phrase “Blacks are criminals” into the more abstracted phrase “A portion of blacks have at some point in their lives committed an act considered illegal at that point at that point in time and space” we will almost certainly have a far less emotional response and have a better understanding of the nebulous group known as “blacks”.

Of course, these concepts do not only apply to groups, but to anything we choose to describe. Any time we use any form of to beto describe something we run the risk of oversimplifying our thought process and make potentially very flawed assumptions. (Hopefully I haven’t lost you at this point with my simplistic explanation of General semantics, I do have a point, and I’m getting to it, I promise!)

This brings me back to labels. Most people I know seem to have an aversion to labels and will say they avoid them or don’t want labels applied to them. In my experience this seem a result of the how people fall into the to be trap. We often feel that if we accept a label we have to be whatever we think that label describes, and that we can’t be anything else.

If one adopts the label of “submissive” by saying “I am submissive” we oversimplify and limit our ability to fully express ourselves. If instead we adopt the label by saying “I feel submissive” or even “At this point in time I choose to explore and express myself in a submissive manner” we are no longer bound by the label although we can still use it as a means to communicate and express ourselves. Thus the label itself is not the problem, but rather the verb we use to tie the label to ourselves and our identities.

The mental discipline Korzybski sought to instill can be hard to attain in full. Most languages that I’m aware of, English among them make heavy use of to bein various permutations. Likewise our culture seems very devoted to these oversimplifications, perhaps because it seems easier, more convenient. It takes less effort and mental agility to think of things in fairly rigid absolutes. One might ask whether our cultural attitudes were shaped by our language or if our language was shaped by cultural attitudes. Korzybski believed that language at the very least reinforces these unhealthy thought patterns and that they key to overcoming them was to change the way we use language.

Some students of General Semantics such as D. David Bourland have sought to do this by creating a brand new form of English known as English Prime or more commonly E-prime which seeks to do away with the verb to beentirely. Others have argued that we do not need to eliminate to beentirely, but rather simply become more aware of how we use the verb and more careful with its application.

An interesting experiment I propose you try is to go for a day or even longer trying to avoid using to bein any of its forms or at least marking down every time you do it, and then give some thought as to how it oversimplified or even misrepresented the thing you were seeking to describe. I have found it to bea fun and useful exercise that helps me view the world in new and fascinating ways.

14 Facts about Scarlet

This little meme has been going around the blogosphere for the last week or so, and although I usually pass on memes in this blog, there’s no way I can pass up an opportunity to talk about myself (do I ever? That’s what this blog is for, isn’t it?), plus I am susceptible to peer pressure. Anyway. I was actually tagged twice, once by Kyle of Butchtastic and the second time by The Butterfly Temptress (I think that’s all who tagged me… if you did and I missed it let me know?), so I’ll give you 14 instead of 7, just ’cause I can.

The Rules:
-Link to your tagger and list these rules on your blog.
-Share 7 facts about yourself on your blog – some random, some weird.
-Tag 7 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blog.
-Let them know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

  1. I currently have 31 piercings (eighteen in my ears, three in my nose, one in my tongue, two in my nipples, one VCH, and six inner labia), have retired four (two in my nipples–I had four at one time and LOVED them and miss them, a snug ear piercing, and a upper lobe ear piercing), and have plans for a few more.
  2. I have eight tattoos (a stylized heart on my left cleavage, a zodiac cancer symbol on the outer side of my right breast, a zodiac aries symbol behind my left ear, a heart-shaped padlock on my right wrist, a key with heart-shaped handle on my left wrist, a rendering of Bettie Page by Olivia on my right thigh, and Gil Elvgren’s pinup witch on my right calf) and plans for many many more.
  3. I always wear skirts or dresses, except when I go to the gym or am doing yoga. Part of this is because of my labia piercings, but also because I just don’t like pants very much.
  4. Similar to above, I never wear underwear unless I absolutely have to, and whenever I do wear underwear it’s always sexy-type underwear with lace or satin or ruffles and usually black, though sometimes red.
  5. I have only ever been on one roller coaster in my life, when I was in 5th grade or so(?), a blue one at Knotts Berry Farm that was basically just a loop that you went through both backwards and forwards. I used to hate roller coasters, but I think my opinion of them has changed and I would be down with going on them now.
  6. When I came out to my mother as bisexual she said “I thought you were a lesbian.”
  7. I have always been a cat person. The most amount of cats I’ve had at one time is nine, which is right now because our mama cat had kittens on the 24th of August, they will soon be leaving, though. The second highest number was seven (due to her last litter in April). Soon we will go down to just having two, maybe three if we keep a gray one from this litter.
  8. I used to dislike dogs for the most part and I absolutely did not want to have one, but lately I have been obsessed with the idea of having a Shiba Inu because they are amazingly adorable.
  9. I absolutely hate tomatoes and most tomato-based products including marinara sauce. When I get pizzas I prefer to get alfredo or pesto sauce or no sauce at all.
  10. I have not eaten red meat since I was 11. I have been a vegetarian since I was 15. I have never had pork, except for a bite of bacon at camp when I was very young, which I spit out because I thought it was gross. I did not become vegetarian for political reasons, but because I do not like meat. I do, however, love quorn chicken and insist it tastes like chicken, but not like murder.
  11. I have never broken any bone in my body, the closest I’ve come is I have sprained my ankle multiple times. I fell off the 15 feet high deck when I was younger and only had a minor concussion.
  12. Aside from annuals at Planned Parenthood I haven’t gone to a doctor since I was 5. My mother is a big fan of homeopathic remedies, and incidentally so am I.
  13. I have been trying to go to the gym every day since I got back from my vacation, I have been averaging about five times a week. I have been doing a half hour of cardio, a half hour of weights, and then an hour of cardio every day. I have gotten past the weight I was gaining and losing and am now just losing.
  14. I can balance things on my head, such as books, baskets, boxes, etc. and I can walk with them on, including up stairs, and sit with them without dropping them. Once I get back into belly dancing I want to work on balancing a sword on my head.

I’m tagging (people who I think haven’t been tagged yet):
Nadia West
Amber
Essin’ Em
And anyone else who hasn’t been tagged that wants to be!

The Undead are Cumming

“Braaaaaaaaains… I mean, peeeeniiiissssssssssss…”

How could I resist posting the clip from a gay zombie movie as found here on Queerty. When someone combines two of my favorite things and makes them just this hilarious, there’s no way I’m passing up posting about it.

This spoof trailer could easily be viewed in one of two ways: as social commentary on the idiocy of being scared of homosexuals as if we carry the plague or some other sort of disease (like zombie disease), poking fun at the stupidity of people who think that way; or it could be a reproduction of that fear. There is no real indication on their website that I can see, or on the YouTube info, but given that it’s comedy and obviously supposed to be a parody or spoof of a real zombie movie, which have been theorized to all be cautionary tales of becoming the “other” in society, I’d say it’s either meant to be a social commentary, or simply a happy accident.

I think it’s hilarious, and brilliant.

FetLife Encourages Great Snark

I just have to share this. I recently greeted someone on FetLife and got this email back:

Thank you for the message. We are close in states.
Do you have Big Tits and Big Ass?

So, I (of course) had to reply after reading his profile which simply reads:

I am new to lifestyle. Like Big Tits, Big Ass. I’m Rich.
I live in Farmington New Mexico.
I have a house, Horse and goat for milk.
I’m here to learn and get Big Tits and Big Ass. I like Dumb Blond but Red can be dumb too.

I replied, and he responded, back and forth. The last two were sent within the last 12 hours:

Me: “I do have big tits and a big ass, but I’m not dumb so I don’t quite fit your other criteria.”
Him: “You can act dumb if you are smart.”
Me: “True, but why would I want to?”
Him: “Cause I am so good.”

Now, I have yet to respond to his being “so good,” and I’m debating if I will. On the one hand, it needs to be addressed, on the other hand anything I say will just go in one ear and out the other at this point, I’m sure of it. Either he is joking with me (which is possible, but not too probable) or he is simply oblivious and naive, which is possible considering his profile. If I do reply it will have to be with something damn perfect.

I am seriously more than amused at this point. I love FetLife, I think there are many wonderful things that happen there, and I love being a greeter, but it’s times like these that I remember that places like FetLife in some way encourage this kind of behavior as well. That’s not to say that FetLife is going around saying “come join here so that you can make and ass out of yourself” or something like that, but it is easy to use, free to join, and attracts the undesirables as well as the desired.

This isn’t exactly bad, as it will help a lot of people figure out things about themselves, even (maybe) the idiots and asshats who think they can just send messages to anyone, including someone whose profile clearly states “owned and collared by Pantos” and although it says I am Polyamorous it says I’m looking for a Mistress or a sub specifically, does he fall into either of those categories? Hmm, let’s think…

Maybe I can use this opportunity to educate him on the finer points of profile diving so that he ends up messaging just those people who might actually be interested in him. Perhaps I could take this opportunity as a way for me to get rid of one of the HNGs out there, to help a poor misguided and delusional man, so that he may come out the other side of it somewhat knowledgeable and not so much hitting on anything he sees. However, I seriously doubt he would take what I said into consideration, which means I can use this opportunity for a much needed snark.

Labels: Useful but Often Problematic

I posted much of this (though not all of it) on my BDSM Theory group on FetLife last night. The post is here though I believe you have to be logged in to read it. On to the ideas.

I believe that labels are like nearly everything else: they have a purpose, but they are often used incorrectly. When thought of as finite and static they lose their purpose. The purpose of labels is to define someone at one particular moment in time.

We are ever-changing and ever-growing creatures. As is said: the only thing constant is change. Most contemporary psychological personality theory centers around the fact that personality changes over time and through different experiences and situations. There may or may not be some basic tenets to the personality and there may or may not be a biological component (as is debated often ad nauseam). However, just about everyone agrees that there are significant changes which happen over time in personality.

So, why would we want to think of ourselves in static finite terms? We wouldn’t! What fun would that be, to box ourselves in to one term or another, and yet we do it all the time. What are labels but nouns and adjectives? What are roles that we subscribe to but labels? The trap of labels is to believe that they are finite and never-changing, this is true of nearly any label.

The idea that we so often miss is that labels are a category, but not a be all and end all of what one person is or is not.

An example: you order a burger at a restaurant. While this is a burger, it could be made of beef, turkey, chicken, soy, vegetables, black beans, or something else entirely. It could come with: lettuce, tomato, onion, mushrooms, pickles, garlic, pastrami, bacon, swiss cheese, cheddar, pepper jack, provolone, smoked gouda, or any number of toppings. It could also have: mayo, mustard, ketchup, ranch, hummus, barbecue sauce, or any number of sauces. It could be served on: whole wheat, white, sesame seed, rosetta… I think you get my point. These combinations create an almost infinite number of variations under the common label of “burger.” So it is with any label.

Just because someone adopts the label of “queer,” for instance, or “slave” it does not mean that anyone else who inhabits these labels looks at all like this person. This queer slave could be male, female, transgendered, transsexual, masculine, feminine, genderqueer, etc. and may be a service slave, a sexual slave, both service and sexual, a brat, part-time, 24/7, a pro slave, live-in, or some combination thereof. This person could have various fetishes such as humiliation, force, objectification, boots, heels, non-sexual service, rope bondage, metal bondage, pain, or anything else. This person in other aspects of life could be a CEO, an artist, an auto mechanic, a teacher, a writer, a sys admin, a starship captain, or anything else.

I think you see my point with that as well. Labels are good for describing generic categories which someone is part of or embraces, but are not good for getting a specific idea of what the person is like, or even what they think, do, or feel. They give a general idea about one general area of a person, but everything else is up for grabs.

While I think we all know this to an extent, it is hard to get away from automatic categorization and stereotyping. I will be the first to admit that I often fall prey to stereotypes, though I have been working to train myself to ignore them, they are so ingrained in us that it is nearly impossible to get out of them. If we were to see someone was a 20 year old straight female slave, for example, I’m sure just from those four descriptors most everyone who read them formed an idea of the person. Even I did.

I think that labels are useful and necessary, and I definitely have a sort of OCD tendency to nitpick my own labels (so far as I have created my own label for myself as well) in order to best explain and express myself to the world, just as you said.

My point is that labels are often attached to other labels, when that may not always be the case, such as the thinking that if someone is x, y, and z, therefore they must also be a, b, and c.

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