April 2009

One of the optional field trips for my graduate classes in Los Angeles includes a trip to the dungeon or the BDSM experience. Here is my report from the recent visit:

Picture this. We meet in the gray non-descript parking lot, in between old junkers and new sleek black Mercedes coupes. The sign out front is just an old American flag, waving in the breeze as if to signal in all the seekers and players into this facsimile of a forgotten VW Hall in the industrial part of town. So, there we are, hair blowing in the high winds of winter in So Cal, standing out front waiting for the crowd to fill in so we can enter the halls of pain and pleasure.

Passive Arts (www.passivearts.com) on Saturday night is a public play space, which intrigues while it entices the inhibited out of their delicate shells. This visit to the dungeon is no different from any of the rest: lots going on, lots of secrets to hold and stories to tell. This visit I escort about 20 of my graduate students, from a myriad of backgrounds, but all eager to embrace their understanding of this, the “darker” side of sexual expression. BDSM is one of the themes I want my students to grasp. At one time or another I predict that they will meet someone in “the scene” as a therapist and maybe, just maybe, being in the zone of a real club like this will alter their perception of the possibilities for erotic power exchange for their clients and themselves. Most of us are the “voyeurs” who derive great pleasure and education at leering at others, the “exhibitionists”, who play for their own and our extreme gratification.

Inside the building, there are several different ambiences. We walk into the trendy living room-esque main hall, with a full bar, nice-looking bartenders, and a performing stage with couches, tables and chairs, sleek mood-making lights, neon atmospheric pulsating shows on the blackened walls, with many sights to see – of dancers in 10” stilettos, of tightly fitted outfits made of leather or latex (black or red), and then this night there are the Wild Things (theme night) with naked bodies except for the strategically placed body paint over areolas and other sexual zones, yelling grrrs and growls and “Come get me’s” with crawl out all over the space. Around the viewing parameter are titties bobbing, dicks sticking out from leather-and-fur-costuming, and even blinking neck harnesses and cock torture cuffs, yes, everything you can imagine, including the standard fare one would expect of black leather chaps, black tight tops over 6-pack abs or full-figured bodices, and a rather unassuming cluster of geeks wearing tee-shirts that say something benign tucked over their chinos. Black, of course is the theme color, along with cheeky leopard and fuzzy fur all around.

Here are some of the scenes I watched:

A buff woman in her late 60s or early 70s is one tough domme. She swings and flicks her whips, floggers, and paddles like she is showing off a master class in arm ballet. I have seen her before, and her powerful presence is palpable. Her aura extends behind her (we watch her from behind as she administers punishment to her female slave) about ten feet of electricity’s worth. Pow-er-ful. And this time her slave, (last time it was a naked male agreeing to cock and ball torture by his mistress), is a 20-something, hefty yet curvy babe, clad only in a black leather bra and panties, with her arms in restraint facing us. She is tightly clamped into an extensive huge spider’s web made of heavy-weight stainless steel chain link. The lighting is half romantic, half industrial strength. And the mood is as electric as the movements of the domme controlling the ecstasy of her slave girl. Riveting is a mild term for this dance of power exchange. First a whipping, then a tender caress on a bobbing breast or under the tender folds of a neck; then another whoosh, whoosh, in calibrated strokes that send chills down my spine. This is BSDM mastery at its best.Another room is the medical playroom; in the center is a GYN table with stirrups for a complete internal exam, legs up style, and a dental chair. Think probing for torture. I’ve never seen anyone use these chairs, but……….you can imagine like me. I’m thinkin’ Dustin Hoffman in “Marathon Man” and my breathing gets anxious!

The school room has been converted into a sort of fetish gear showroom for sale items. Often this room is full of students in some phase of being disciplined by an angry school marm, complete with a full set of stocks for their arms and heads, leaving bare buttocks exposed to receive the caning of their naughty lives. Today the little wooden desks are cramped with whips, dress-up and gear of all varieties.

Another room sends me into whirlings of imagination of what it must feel like to be locked in a Paris-type Bastille dungeon prison cell and not be let out for hours, even days. It is dimly lighted, as gray and black paint bedecks the walls of this dark chamber. And the devices inside make me think that could be one dangerous way to pay back society for crimes against the people, which gets my adrenaline pumping.

Finally, there are two rooms left. One is filled with medieval seating, human-size cages and a rack. You can stand on the platform bottom of the rack, holding the bars above, and be hoisted up by a crank. The other table is splayed for all of your limbs to be spread apart for play, with the proper metals loops for affixing your shackles or other restraints. I’ve often seen tickling fetish play in this room and it always makes me giggle or writhe in agony of watching the players push the edge.

And finally the room at the back has the darkest lighting and energy. One man is suspended into air with harnesses; there is a full-size sort of bird cage with a chain for the neck; a box in which you could be tortured in restraints on all of your body parts; and lots of pulleys holding up an array of restraining lines; the sound of metal clicking open and closed and the sight of the slightly bizarre are hallmarks of this particular room. I listen to the power of the cracking of snapping bull whips echoing throughout this large chamber on this night. Whoosh, whoosh, bang. Like clashing thunder, the symphony of suggestive sounds and signaling alarm is loud and can be felt in your bones. We then observe the artistry of the tease, while the master with the bull whip makes love with his lady whose arms are in restraints above her and whose face appears to be in total surrender. His long snaky whip caresses her breasts in her tight black evening dress, then he pulls it sensuously along her neck, and then snaps it across her pubic mound, all covered in the cloth of her outfit. She writhes in excited joy. He smiles with conceit at his daft skills and her response. Another man sits for hours steadily knotting a skinny red rope. Eventually it becomes a small human-shaped doll which he then places in a neck harness suspended above the floor and whips it into a frenzy. But last of all, the naked wild things play on stage and in the back room, clawing at the air, whispering dares to their apparent lovers, and alluring their wild pursuers into what one might expect could be a long night of passion. So, next time, if you would like to join us, or if you would like a personal escort for indulging your own BDSM fantasies at Passive Arts, write to me at: askthesexcoach@aol.com and check our newsletter in the future for news about our Erotic Explorers Club about to be formed here in Los Angeles.

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