Sunday, May 31, 2009

Saturday Afternoon

We were over at a friend's house, leaning against the stone wall that separated us from a 300 foot drop into the ocean. The sun was shining and the sky was clear of any clouds. If we'd been further inland the temperature would have been in the 80's, but as it was, the ocean breeze was brisk enough to make me shiver once in a while. He put an arm around me and I nuzzled his neck. His body warmth and the naturally spicy scent of him immediately enthralled me.

"When we get home..." I started.


"When we get home I want to tie you to my bed and ride you."

He made an interesting noise and pressed himself into me. I could feel his hardness against my belly. It was a tease and a promise.

A couple of hours later we headed home. I reached into the glove box for a toy and then reclined my seat. He didn't complain when I plugged the vibrator into the outlet, but he did shoot me an exasperated look that said can't you wait? My answer was to put my right foot on the dashboard and slide my left hand under my skirt. Waay up under my skirt.

Every guy fantasizes about having a girl who is always ready for sex, he told me once. Until he gets one and realizes what a nightmare keeping her satisfied can be. I chose not to take offense to this wry self-honesty on his part. I've found that my sex drive intimidates most of the men I date.

The drive home from Pacifica took seven or eight minutes. Enough time for me to have an orgasm and perfume the two-seater with the scent of pussy. When we pulled into the garage I leaned over and kissed him, teasing his mouth with my tongue. When he reached for me I opened the car door and dashed up the stairs.

He chased after me and caught me just inside the door. He pressed me up against the wall with his body and ground his cock against my mound, making me gasp when the seam on his jeans rolled over my clit.

I would have dropped to my knees right there if it wasn't for the fact that my mind was fixated on tying him to my bed. I wanted him that way. And so I grabbed his hand and pushed past him toward my bedroom, toward the scarf-draped hat stand that beckoned with promises of silken ties.

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Friday, May 29, 2009


In my dream, I was rocking. At first, I was just rocking in the darkness. I had no idea why I was rocking, just that I was. It was a nice rocking feeling, comfortable instead of scary.

And I thought about the last time I'd felt myself rocking like that, and the next thing I knew, I was sitting in a boat on a lake, cradling my sister, reading to her, knowing I had to do something soon, or she would die. We rocked there, tied up against the dock, and I tried to shine every ounce of love into her, and I spoke of hope and healing. She was shivering, wrapped up in that blanket, even though it was 90 degrees outside and the sun was shining. She leaned her head against me and sighed, and nodded off....

And then we were young girls, rocking in a hammock under the redwoods. She was asleep against me, her mouth slightly open, her little rosebud mouth, and her hair was tousled and damp with sweat. I dropped my foot down and pushed, and we rocked a little harder. The air smelled like oaks and cedar.

Then I woke up. I'd forgotten both memories, but they are fresh in my mind now. Bittersweet gifts from my subconscious.


Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Opening the gate to the land of pleasure

In many ways, one could say that a woman's sensual energy is boundless, and that when she readies herself for her lover she opens a gate to her sensual self. This gate is the barrier of restraint, and beyond it lies the Land of Pleasure. We know this land, and we do so love crossing over into it, and yet most women rarely enter. Why? Because we have a near-infinite capacity for pleasure, and men do not. Because arousal for us is not the flipping of a switch, but the unfolding of a flower following the rising sun. Because men aren't as intuitive as they could be. And because the habit of disappointment is difficult to break. How often do women open themselves to full arousal only to find that their lover has finished just as she was getting started? What woman doesn't half-expect her burgeoning arousal to become instant irritation because her boyfriend misread the signals and gave her nipples a hard tweak instead of a suck?

In their defense, men aren't mind-readers -- and neither are women. Each of us has a fair chance of getting our needs met if we communicate them clearly, provided that we understand what those needs are. And this is where it can get tricky for women. We need the long build-up. We need our minds aroused first, and then our bodies follow. We need to feel connected to our bodies, to be fully present to the pleasures of our own flesh before we are ready to grant a lover access. Only, sadly enough, many women don't even know this about themselves. This lack of coherency means we expect our partners to intuit our needs -- or expect them to fail miserably. Thus the habit of disappointment.

My recommendation to men is to begin the seduction of their lovers 5 or 6 hours before they hope for consummation. Send suggestive text messages to her cell phone. Leave an innocent voicemail in your sexiest voice. Tell her you can't get the scent of her off your mind. Remind her of an encounter that you know was pleasurable for you both. Depending on how she responds, build the tension up. Ask her to remove her panties. See if she will meet you at lunch to give them to you. Message her that you have to go into a meeting but your cock is hard from the memory of her taste / smell / skin / sounds. Ask her to take off from work an hour early so she can go for a massage / pedicure, or to find the surprise waiting for her at home. Be creative, appreciative, and if possible, both raunchy and respectful. Women have their raunchy sides and they'd show them more often if not for the fear of seeming 'less' in their lovers eyes.

And my advice to women? Take the time to open the gate to your sensual self -- prepare yourself for your lover. Take a long bath in scented water. Shave yourself slowly, letting your fingers trail over the smooth skin. Imagine your lover's enjoyment of that silken flesh. Rub oil into your skin -- everywhere. Touch yourself. Enjoy the weight of your breasts and the sensitivity of your nipples. Slide your hands down over your hips and dip them between your thighs. Caress your neck and shoulders. Put your hair up in a suggestive bedroom-do. Wear something soft, something that makes you feel sexy. Tease him with naughty messages. Tell him you're not wearing panties. Wear a garter belt and stockings under your skirt on a windy day, and enjoy the knowledge that you've made several men happy when you walked by. Flirt. Exercise. Glow with happiness and sensuality. Be feminine in a way that is natural to you. Tell your lover exactly what you want, in the most explicit language you can use. Do these things and you can walk through the gate to the Land of Pleasure without fear of disappointment. You will be ready for a banquet of sensuality, and he will be your devoted diner.

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Tuesday, May 26, 2009

One year ago

It was just a year ago, and yet it seems longer. A year ago my sister got up out of her hospice bed and did her first round of chemo. A year ago another sister had a heart attack on the heels of a traumatic experience. And a year ago, I almost died.

Of the 17 days I spent in the hospital, I only remember the last week. Which disturbs me. Clarity of mind is important to me. I rarely drink and I don't do drugs because I'd rather experience the world authentically, awake to the moment. And yet I lost 10 days. I remember bits and pieces. I've made a patchwork quilt of memories, trying to cover my hospital bed in a security blanket. Odd, how insecure I feel about that drug-induced fuzziness. Odder, still, to realize that there are people who would envy me the blissful void that comes with dilaudid-on-demand, people who seek out that oblivion every chance they get. And having experienced it, I am both glad to be alive and saddened by the awareness that there are people who would rather sleep through life than live it. Because after being trapped in a hospital bed for 17 days, I understand the escape that drugs can be.

Within a week, a small infection turned to cystitis turned to septicemia. I'd gotten the 'flu and was working long hours trying to get caught up before I took a few days to be with my sister for her first chemo treatment. I really wanted to be there with her. I felt like hell but I got on a plane, determined to be there. I'd spent hours sitting by her bedside telling her to get up and fight and I wanted to celebrate the victory that starting chemo was for us both. I had terrible chills that had me shivering for hours. I thought it was the flu bug, but it was the first signs of septicemia. Her immune system was compromised and I didn't want to make her sick. So when I arrived at the airport, I knew I couldn't see her, not right away, so I stayed with a friend.

In the morning I told him I was sick. I called my doc and her office called in a prescription for an antibiotic to a local pharmacy, with instructions to seek medical attention if the infection didn't improve in 48 hours. I should have gone to the hospital that day, but I didn't. I thought I was getting better because my temperature had dropped. I didn't know that meant I was going septic. I was in a lot of pain, so I spent the next two days in a haze. I just withdrew my consciousness. My friend did what he could to make me comfortable there on his couch, bringing me my antibiotics and my aspirin. By Friday morning, the pain was beyond level 10. I had to fight back the constant urge to vomit. It was 48 hours since I'd started the antibiotics and I was no better. I called my sister the nurse, the one who'd just had the heart attack two weeks earlier, and she told me, with a tone of voice that brooked no argument, to get to the emergency room for IV antibiotics. So I went.

I remember that the first dose of morphine didn't do anything for the pain. Neither did the second one. It took 4 doses of morphine to get me to lay still enough for them to do a CT Scan. I remember after the scan the doctor asked me how long I'd had kidney disease. I told him I'd had a full physical 6 months earlier and was in perfect health. Apparently that information, combined with my low blood pressure and falling body temperature, was what they needed to know for them to realize I was in septic shock--the infection had gone to my organs and in a few hours I'd be dead. 30 minutes later, I was in surgery.

I remember the anaesthesiologist was a woman with a compassionate demeanor. I remember her asking me questions, but I don't remember what they were. I remember them moving me to the surgery table, and the mask, and then nothing. The next thing was a moment of panic when they brought me up to consciousness while still attached to the respirator--they wanted to make sure I could breathe on my own. Then blackness again, and the next thing I remember is the anaesthesiologist saying, "I need you to remember one word. If you ever need surgery again, tell your anaesthesiologist 'anterior'. Remember. Anterior." Apparently, they'd had a hell of a time intubating me for the surgery.

From then on, it is a blur. There was a rhythm to the days in the hospital. They gave me antibiotics via IV twice a day at first. I remember it because the bag of vancomycin was cold and a disgusting greenish-yellow color. I remember endless blood draws. Change in antibiotics to three times a day. The CNAs putting the nasal cannula back in place because my oxygen levels were low.

And I remember the twice-daily ordeal known in my mind as The Cleaning Of The Wound. It was a 20 centimeter incision that they did not stitch closed -- it needed to heal from the inside-out the surgeon told me -- and it needed to be cleaned often. I don't remember the early days as they did it for me and they usually gave me a dose of dilaudid first. But at some point around my first week there they decided I was healing well enough that I could move around without damaging the wound on my thigh. And then the fun started. I got my first shower, and in my first shower, they cleaned it with a water wand. The pain was so sudden and so intense that I lost my breakfast. And after that, they were all too happy to let me clean it myself. I got two percoset an hour before my shower to take the edge off the pain without making me too drowsy. Then they wheeled me to the little tiled room and I would spend 30 minutes cleaning up. When I was done, I was shaking so badly they had to dry me off and help me shift from the stool in the shower room to the wheelchair. When I got back to my room the nurse was always waiting with a dose of dilaudid. I would slide into oblivion for a couple of hours and wake after the worst of the pain was gone.

I always had another person in my room with me, and the first one was very quiet. I only remember her as a face saying goodbye. The second one was a Filipino girl who watched Catholic services on TV, and whose family brought her food in the afternoons. The smell of the food often hit me like a wall and made me physically ill. I have a memory of vomiting with enough force to hit the privacy curtain 6 feet away. I remember that after that the CNAs started giving me the towels I begged for instead of the little basins. I remember my friend calling and asking permission to visit, which he did every day. And I remember talking to family and friends on my cell phone, though I don't remember what was said. Ten days passed like that.

And then Mrs C arrived Memorial Day Weekend. I could tell she was elderly by her voice, and her tendency to speak loudly. That is probably all I would remember about her, if it hadn't been for the fact that the battery in her hearing aid went out. Her deafness meant that one day I woke up in my own Personal Hell.

The nursing staff always thought there was something wrong with my TV because I didn't watch it. Apparently I was the only person on the floor who abhorred TV. And Mrs C not only watched TV, but needed the volume turned up VERY LOUD because of her hearing loss. I lost my mind. I kept my sense of humor during my ordeal, I made the staff laugh with my story of the ingrown hair turned killer hair, but the endless hours of unremitting babble emitting from Mrs C's TV reduced me to tears. My friend called to ask if he could come by and I told him only if he brought ear plugs and chocolate. Which he did, and thus saved my sanity.

I hated the dilaudid, and yet I started asking for it even when my pain-level wasn't high. I hated that feeling I got in my chest when they pushed it through my IV. It felt like anxiety hitting my heart. I begged the nurses to push it slowly, extra slowly, and they'd laugh and say I'd never make a drug-addict, and yet there I was, asking for dilaudid to escape the misery of my existence... an existence that had narrowed down to the agony of my twice-daily showers and 18 hours of too-loud TV that the plugs in my ears cut down to a just-bearable level. The staff, bless them, tried to find a replacement battery for her hearing aid, but could not, and with it being a holiday weekend, her family didn't bring one in for her until Tuesday afternoon. Three and a half days of hell.

It got better after that, but now I was awake to every moment and the agonizing rhythms of my days. I'd been getting a new IV every other day because the meds were so hard on my veins, and it got to the point that I cried whenever they started thumping my arms and hands looking for a new site. I was healing fast but I still had an open wound and as long as it was more than a few centimeters, I required IV antibiotics. My sister suggested a PICC line and I requested it, which made everything from the blood draws to the IV meds painless. And it turned out that the PICC line was my ticket out of the hospital. My step-mom was once a home health nurse supervisor and between us we convinced the hospital that I could go home with the PICC line and administer my own IV meds. I studied molecular biology, I told them. Running an IV is simpler than running PCR.

And so I went 'home' to my friend's house, and spent another 3 weeks on home health care, running my own IV three times a day.

All this was just a year ago. And perhaps it seems to have happened so long ago because so much has happened since, and perhaps because I still feel Tammy's loss so keenly. It has been 16 months since she died and sometimes I think of her and smile. And sometimes I think of her and ache. And for some reason, the memory of her pain hurts more than the memory of my own. Funny, how life works.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Who Would I Love

(a love poem in the style of Rumi)

When my sisters ask
Why him?
How do I tell them of the sweet satifaction
of laying in your arms?
They would only feel envious.

When an old lover says
Remember when?
How do I tell him that your scent has driven away
the memory of other men?
He would only feel forgotten.

When a friend sings
of broken hearts
How do I tell her that the lyrical sweep of your voice
healed me completely?
She would only feel injured.

And when the moon wonders
why my bed is empty
How do I tell you that the warmth of my flesh
is reserved for you alone?
You are not here to feel me.

Who would I love
if not you?
Who else can meet my soul when it leaves my body
at the eternal moment of ecstacy?
There is no one else for me.

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Saturday, May 02, 2009

Are intelligent women sexy, or just oxymorons?

A question rose in my mind today "Are intelligent women sexy, or just oxymorons?"

I've made the mistake of watching television recently, trying to stay abreast of the issues playing out these days: torture, swine flu, and the economy. I rarely watch television, but given that I was out of the country for three weeks, I figured I'd risk filling my brain with bullshit, trusting that my crap-filter would sort the golden nuggets from the brown ones.

A lot of what I've seen and heard appalls me. Especially from women. There are a lot of attractive women on TV and most of them are ninnies, apparently. Either they can't think or they aren't paid to think -- just read the teleprompter. Regardless of which political ideology a network subscribes to, the attractive women are mostly ditzes, and most of the talking heads they feature are either knowledgeable and unattractive, or brainless and beautiful. A notable exception is Rachel Maddow. She's intelligent, insightful, humorous, easy on the eyes, and obviously a lesbian. Which got me thinking that the only way a woman who was smart and sexy could be on TV (and speak her mind) was if she was a lesbian (enter Ellen).

As soon as that thought occurred to me, I remembered something my paternal great-grandmother told me. I was 10 or so, and I'd done some testing that showed I was not only gifted but a genius and my proud parents called everyone in the family. When Grandmother got the news she immediately drove over to see me. She took me aside and said, "Be careful not to let the boys know how smart you are. Boys don't like girls who are smarter than them, and if they find out, you'll never get married." To which I answered, "Then boys are stupid and I'll never get married." (And I haven't ;)

Of course, boys aren't stupid, but they are easily led--by the eyes. Flash a pretty girl in front of them and they start diverting blood-flow to a different head. I never considered myself a pretty girl, and I remember I used to look at people who said I was pretty and wonder why they were lying to me. But then, I did have four beautiful sisters, and what I know now that I didn't know then was that even if I am the least beautiful of the five of us, I'm far from ugly. My beautiful sisters (none of them idiots, mind you) focused on being beautiful and the benefits that could be reaped from it. I focused on being smart. I educated myself. In retrospect I know that I took the 'easy way' just like my sisters did--the only difference being in what came easily to each of us.

As a teenager I struggled with my brainy persona. Few boys asked me out, mainly because I either intimidated them or was completely uninterested in them, and when I did choose to date and be sexually active, I chose partners significantly older than myself. People I could relate to, people who appeared to enjoy my mind as much as my body. Away at my Ivy League college, I discovered that I found intelligent women sexy as hell, and that very often they were easy on the eyes, too. I also found that often as not, the sexiest ones were lesbians--or at least, bisexual. It was like having my cake and eating it, too.

When I left my Ivory Tower and rejoined the Real World, I was disappointed to find that most of the women I encountered were sheeple. I became rather misogynistic, not because I disliked women, but because I knew what women could be and was appalled by what they had become. Most of the vibrant and intelligent women I encountered were single, most of the sheeple were married. I wondered if marriage and baby-making turned women into sheeple, or if the intelligent women were unmarried because men considered them oxymorons.

In questioning them, I found the intelligent women often said that being unmarried was a conscious choice, or that they were very discerning about their partners and had difficulty finding men who met their criteria. Some reported knowing that they intimidated men and thus had few dates, others reported that they had to beat men off with a stick. It was the latter group, of course, that made me curious. Somewhere in the middle, I found that most of the men I had to tell to shove off were submissives--same with the ones who found me intimidating. For me, I knew it was a matter of being a Dominant, and I wondered if it was the same with them. I learned that, for the most part, it wasn't. Naturally dominant women are rare. So what was it? I asked myself what quality made these women so sexy that men not only hit on them but wanted to stick around even after discovering that the girls had brains.

I mulled the question over for a couple of years, and the answer came when I asked myself what I had in common with them, besides being smart and reasonably attractive. Sensuality. These women were all very sensual. They had the kind of sensuality that truly sexually liberated women have. "Aha!" I thought. "Guys will fuck smart women if they think they'll be great in bed."

Of course, its true in some cases, but not all of them. There are, I learned, men out there who are sapiosexual--who are attracted, first and foremost, to intelligence in others. There are men out there who, being naturally submissive, unwittingly seek out a woman who can dominate them, both inside and outside the bedroom. There are men who are turned off by women who react first instead of think first, and thus date thinking women. And of course there are men who hate women, hate intelligent women even more, and are attracted to them, consciously or not, so they can "put them in their places" as God intended.

The truth is, its complicated as all hell, but there are men (and women) who find intelligent women sexy. I don't think we are as rare as the mainstream media seems to indicate with its profusion of bubble-headed correspondents, and I hope we start getting better coverage--outside the bedroom.