I’m a dom. When I go to meet a bunch of people who also do bdsm, I’m likely to wear black: black boots with metal rings, black jeans with zips all over the place, black t-shirt, black jacket.
That’s traditional. It’s probably only thirty to forty years old, as traditions go, but I tend to go with traditions where they’re harmless. But in general I’m not an enormous fan of black or darkness.
Dr Frederick Wertham was quite right to say there was a strong fetishistic streak in comic book characters. (That’s Superman and Power Girl, by the way.)
For example I always preferred Superman to Batman; Superman’s story is about optimism and ethical issues, while Batman’s story is about poor Bruce Wayne being psychologically messed up because he saw his parents murdered in front of him.
Superman’s problem is essentially that he’s a god, and he has to work out ways of using his powers to help humanity without getting in their way too much. To me that’s more interesting and actually far more relatable that Batman’s dead-parents-bitterness problem.
Because we all have some power, and we all need to work out how to use our allocation of power to make things better.
(Don’t get me wrong. I like the Batman mythos and I ain’t dissing Bruce Wayne. I just prefer Superman’s world. And worldview.)
Wertham’s mistake was in thinking there’s anything wrong with that. (Batman with Catwoman.)
Similarly, I’m not really interested in the problems of the traditional powers of darkness. I could never take vampires, werewolves, ghosts, demons and devils seriously. I don’t just mean that I don’t think they’re real. It’s that as story elements they seem kind of silly, rather than sexy or stylish or chilling or whatever. I can’t be scared by a vampire story or movie, because they just don’t feel real.
Darkness, when I’m writing, tends to come in the shape of a corrupt or authoritarian politician, a racist cop, a violent husband.
Or just malign chance, like disease or car accident.
Most of the people in stories I write, including the erotica, are well-meaning. They may get ratty, and thoughtless, but that’s because they’re under stress. Given time to relax and think, they behave better. I write that kind of interaction not because it’s a fantasy world I want to live in: it’s actually the way that most real people actually do behave. I also think it’s more interesting: the struggle people have, in trying to find and make themselves do the right thing. And conflict between people who both think they’re doing the right thing, and are well-meaning, is more interesting that struggles between “good” and “evil”.
Once we’ve got our black gears on, all male doms think we look like this. In our dreams…
As a dom, I give control, restraint and certain kinds of pain to women who want that, to be controlled, held tight, bound, given carefully measured touches of pain, while knowing that they are loved and looked after.
That doesn’t seem to me to be “dark”, or enhanced by pretending that it is. It’s colourful, the colours of blush and arousal, which vary with different skin colours, but are seldom really “black”. Sex, and especially bdsm, is not at all monochrome.
It’s an exchange, for love, or at least affection, and pleasure on both sides. We give each other things that the other fiercely needs, while receiving the equivalent from them.
So I don’t deal much in darkness, or in black. Except for the clothes.
I’ll be back to Maddie’s saga next week.