Sep 252014
 

Sweet and RoughBook: Sweet & Rough:Sixteen Stories of Queer Smut
Editor: Sinclair Sexsmith
Publisher: Maverick Press
$7.99 digital book; epub, pdf, mobi (available now!)
$24.95 hardcover book (Nov 2014)

Sinclair Sexsmith is one of my favorite erotic writers, whose stories combine all of the things that are important to me: power and gender dynamics, intimacy, consent, kink, multidimensional characters, and believable plots. If anything, Sweet & Rough: Sixteen Stories of Queer Smut takes erotica to a new level for me, because it’s easier for me to identify with than most smut that I read.

As much as I enjoyed reading the book, it was even more of a pleasure to get to ask Mr. Sexsmith a few questions about the book…

All of your stories are written in first person and you are almost always packing. How important is having a cock to your masculinity?

Sinclair Sexsmith“It’s not that having a cock is important to my masculinity so much as it is important to my sexuality and sexual expression. For whatever reason, I’m very cock-centric, and much of my erotic play centers around penetration and reception. You might even say I have a penetration or a cock fetish. Interesting, coming from a dyke, huh? It’s a curious contradiction, to me, and one that has taken me a lot of deconstructing and reconstructing to make sense of.

Of course, masculinity is also important to my sexuality and sexual expression, so it isn’t that the masculinity doesn’t go hand-in-hand. But my cock isn’t so much about my masculine presentation as it is about playing with a lover’s body in ways that incorporate power, penetration, and energy. Since those are some of my most significant fetishes and kinks, and since strap-on cocks are a really excellent tool to play with all three of those, I tend to have an incredibly cock-centric sex life. Probably 9 times out of 10 that I have sex, I’m strapped on.”

I noticed that in pretty much all of these stories you integrate reading non-verbal cues as part of receiving consent. As a writer, how difficult is it to balance fantasy and enthusiastic consent?

“It’s so complicated! I am often in conflict with my role as a sexuality and BDSM educator and my role as someone who crafts dirty fantasy stories with the purpose of turning someone on and exploring erotic realms. Non-verbal cues are incredibly hard to teach about and talk about, because they are so easily misinterpreted. But what I love about writing is that you can show a character’s inner story and inner world really clearly, so you can show the conflict they feel about whether or not they got consent, or the very clear consent they are thinking even if their body language is the only cue.

The issue of consent and whether consent and ethics are clearly depicted in erotica is something I think about a lot, and try to play with consciously in my work. As I’ve been evolving as a writer and creator, I don’t think it’s as black and white as I previously thought it was, and I’m interested in exploring more of the nuance. (I refuse to add anything about “shades of grey.”)”

I can see many aspects of these stories that reflect what I know of you as a sexual person: gender play, power dynamics, sacred intimacy, and kink. What does it mean to you to write queer smut?

“Yes, absolutely—this book is really revealing, the closest thing to a diary that I’ve released. It’s been interesting how much vulnerability has come up, now that it is making the rounds and people are talking about the content! What does it mean to write queer smut … hmmm. I started because I have always been a writer, and because I was obsessing over reading “lesbian erotica” but most of it didn’t have the bite, the edge, that I was seeking. And, I started because I wanted to write as a way to explore my own fantasies and my own inner erotic world, in order to write myself into a better sex life. I gotta say: That worked. Incredibly well. Articulating my own fantasies and erotics made me more bold, more daring, and more able to go after what I wanted. So for me, writing queer smut means staying in touch with my erotic self, cultivating my own erotic desires, and prioritizing them in a variety of ways. When my erotic self dries up, there are so many consequences, and when I am deeply in touch, I am more creative and capable, and better able to act from places of love, strength, abundance, and vulnerability, rather than fear or scarcity. Writing erotica has been such an important way for me to come into my own power, kink, sexuality, desires, and deeper fuller self.”

Sinclair is right, this book is very intimate and revealing. This collection of stories is certainly extremely hot, but what I like best is the raw honesty at the heart of each story. It was easy for me to imagine myself in each character, to use each story as a starting point for my own fantasies. Perhaps the biggest compliment I can give this book is that, after reading, I am imagining where I would let Mr. Sexsmith take me!

Mar 012014
 
Vixen Creations Ride On and Colossus

Colossus (top) and Ride On (bottom)

I’m going to start this review of penis prostheses by saying that I think that once a guy stops worrying about his erection and when he is going to come, sex is a much more enjoyable experience for both of us.

Don’t get me wrong, I really like fucking. A hard man is good to find and all that, but I prefer to focus on pleasure rather than penetration. I didn’t even realize how much more pleasure there is to explore until I started having sex with Harold. He was 58 at the time. As is normal for men his age, his cock doesn’t always work the way he wants it to, yet we have so much fun together.

Harold and I are very adventurous sexually. I suspect that Harold has always been a considerate and playful lover, but I appreciate that he is interested in taking his time and exploring every possibility with me. Ironically, we started wondering what it would be like if he could have more erections. What if he could stay harder longer? What if he could fuck again right after coming? These questions led us to investigate some fascinating products…

Vixen Creations makes two PPA (Prosthetic Penis Attachment)/Extenders – Ride On and Colossus – that seem to be miles ahead of the competition. I contacted them and they happily sent us one of each to review. I asked for two different colors so we could compare. We have Ride On in Vanilla and Colossus in Caramel (the third option is chocolate), but neither shade is close to Harold’s skin color.

Trying to get into Ride On

Scrotum should go through first

These are made of soft silicone. Vixen is famous for their VixSkin, a proprietary realistic feeling skin-like material. These PPAs are supposedly a bit softer than their standard formula. They feel and look more realistic than any dildoes I’ve ever owned. Sadly, my cunt did not react well to this silicone. I am pretty delicate and fucking with these the first time made my vagina burn. After that we used condoms and that worked fine. This material does pick up lint and things fairly easily, but washes up with warm water and mild soap.

I think a sense of humor is mandatory for PPAs. Even when it works well, there is still something kind of ridiculous about a prosthetic penis. For us, the laughter started when we eagerly attempted to put the device on. Of course we hadn’t bothered to read the instructions. How hard can it be? You stick the penis in the tube part and pull the balls through the hole. Right.

Here’s the quick guide from Vixen’s website:

  • Roll the sleeve one third of the way down.
  • Apply lubricant to the inside of the Ride On and your penis.
  • Squeeze out the air.
  • Place your penis into the opening and gradually release the pressure.
  • Unroll the Ride On to the base.
  • Pull the scrotum through the hole.
  • Pull to one side and push through one testicle.
  • Repeat with the other.
  • Have fun!
Vixen Creations Ride On

What an impressive hard on!

Even following these instructions, it was not easy to secure the extenders. You are supposed to be able to use Ride On with or without an erection, simply create a vacuum around your penis and push your balls through the hole at the base. Harold and I are used to handling his balls, but this was a chore – not exactly spontaneous, but funny as hell trying to capture each testicle and send it through the hole. We had better luck tying off the base of his scrotum, but I don’t really recommend this method. I think there is a learning curve and it gets easier each time, so definitely practice a bunch before you find yourself in a “fuck me now” moment.

Ride On was a great fit for Harold (when not fully hard) at 4″ x 1″. It added some interesting length for me with outer dimensions of 6.25″ x 1.75″. I think it makes Harold look like a porn star. Colossus, however, never really fit well. The first time we tried it was right after he had orgasmed, so he wasn’t at all hard and couldn’t create any vacuum to keep his penis inside. It kept buckling when he tried to fuck me. We were almost hysterical with laughter. I finally asked for one of his socks, stuffed it inside, and we were able to proceed.

When I asked Joel to try out these PPAs, his experience was opposite Harold’s. With an erection, Joel was unable to fit in Ride On, no matter what he tried. Joel’s scrotum is not dangly or very stretchy, so he found the application of the device painful, however, Colossus fit his cock well with inner dimensions of 5.5″ x 1.375″. The outside is 6.75″ x 2.25″, which doesn’t seem that large, but looks and feels impressive.

Vixen Creations Colossus

Stuffing a sock inside Colossus

Lube is a necessity with these extenders. Lots of lube inside seems to improve fit as well as pleasure. Our experience was that the PPA served kind of as a masturbation sleeve. More lube outside made fucking more comfortable for me as well, but nothing replaces fabulous foreplay. (I like to be begging to be fucked before anything goes inside my cunt.) One note: I would recommend warming the PPA before use if at all possible. Otherwise it feels very cold and weird!

I prefer Ride On to Colossus in terms of my comfort, but both are amazing in concept. I love that these PPAs allow sex to happen in all of the ways I might want it to. For example, getting fucked in the ass is not possible without a firm hard-on. I’m a person who likes options. At first the $124 – $130 price tag seemed a little steep, but then I realized that we are currently paying $30 a pill for Viagra, so it seems like a good investment, as well as being more flexible and reliable.

I make love to feel connected to my partner. Vixen Creation’s PPAs do not feel like the real thing, but they can help me to feel more connected. If nothing else, we have the shared experience of laughing over introducing something called Colossus to my privates.

These are my thoughts, but it seems wrong to review what is a product designed to fit over penises without getting some opinions from people who have penises…

Harold says, “I’ve always thought this kind of product would be cool, because it would give me the option to keep fucking right after coming if that was what my partner wanted. Also, now that I’ve gotten older and don’t always get a good erection (or sometimes even any erection at all), it could make penetrative sex possible if that was something we wanted.

“The funny thing is, although Ride-on works pretty well just as I thought it might, it seems much less interesting than I’d anticipated. We love to fuck, but having a prosthesis involved clarified for me again something I’ve known for a long time, namely that what you do is really not nearly as important as what you feel emotionally. It was fun to try out the Ride-on and Collossus, but using them had little relationship to what we experience when we’re normally fucking.”

Vixen Ride On in action

Ride On in action

Joel says, “I don’t suffer from a small cock and generally don’t have a problem with erectile dysfunction so the stunt cock is not normally something that I would be interested in.  That said, when my sexy wife showed me a giant hollow cock and asked for my help with an experiment how could I possibly say no.

“There is something amazing about wielding a giant cock that never gets soft.  Seeing and feeling that massive appendage swinging between my legs was certainly a rush.

“I needed lots of lubrication to slide my cock into the hollow inside, even partially flaccid, and the strap that went around my testicles was a bit snug for my tastes, but the overall experience was certainly worth it.”

Bottom line: Make love with everything you’ve got, and then if you still want to improve your ability to penetrate, buy a Ride On or a Colossus.

Grade: B+

Oct 062013
 

Adv Couple's Guide to Sex Toys 2eBook: “The Adventurous Couple’s Guide to Sex Toys”
Written by: Violet Blue
Foreword by: Dr. Charlie Glickman
Published by: Cleis Press

We dare you to read this book.

Are you scared to ask your partner to try the kinky things you fantasize about? Or maybe you are at the other end of the spectrum – you think that together you’ve tried all of the sex toys? Then we double dare you to read Violet Blue’s new book, “The Adventurous Couple’s Guide to Sex Toys.” Whether you’ve never even broached the subject of sex toys or you’re getting bored in the bedroom, we think you can use this guide to find some inspiration.

We’re pretty adventurous. Collectively, we have over 60 years of experience making, buying, and using sex toys. While we try to be as safe as possible, there have been some misadventures, so the first thing that we noticed about “The Adventurous Couple’s Guide to Sex Toys” was Blue’s well informed safety tips. Important information is covered clearly and often highlighted in a boxout, making it easy to access. We wish that there had been a book like this when we were first looking at sex toys!

Countless people have told us stories of shame that made it impossible to ask their partner for what they really want. It drives us crazy because we believe that everyone deserves to have a fulfilling sex life. Well! We now have a resource to recommend to those people. “The Adventurous Couple’s Guide to Sex Toys” doesn’t have all of the answers, but it focuses on good communication and offers some concrete suggestions for starting the sex toy conversation or surprising your lover with a toy (hint: surprise is not always a good idea). Blue’s personality shines through her writing, putting you at ease like you were having coffee with your sex smart best friend. There is no shame here, only fascinating data meant to empower you.

Our biggest criticism of the book is that it’s fairly heteronormative. While Blue has been very inclusive of all people, the book largely addresses straight couples. The chapter on strap-on sex has some great information about introducing men to anal play, but nothing about women playing together. Most of the material is presented in an unbiased fashion, but we found the overall assumption tended toward heterosexual couples. A minor thing of note: we found some of the language a bit forced or awkward from time to time, but it doesn’t interfere too much.

We loved pretty much everything else: the brightly colored cover, the highly accurate illustrations by Zanne DeJanvier, the foreword written by Charlie Glickman, PhD, and a whole chapter on resources for acquiring good sex toys. We appreciate Blue’s candor in naming names when talking about products she believes in. “The Adventurous Couple’s Guide” bravely covers the gamut of sex toys: vibrators, butt plugs and other anal toys, dildos, strap-on harnesses, bondage, and nipple clamps. We were most excited to read about teledildonics (including webcam), sex machines, and sex furniture.

We found a lot of stuff in “The Adventurous Couple’s Guide to Sex Toys” that we have tried. What surprised us was how much new information there was. Well, maybe not new, but things we haven’t ever talked to each other about. We read the book separately, but when we compared notes we discovered that we shared a whole new realm of fantasy we have not yet explored. Just reading this book was a huge turn on – thinking about everything we’ve done and things we’d still love to do inspired some heavy sexting and at least one masturbation session. Without this book, we might never have shared with each other a mutual and intense interest in trying out a Monkey Rocker!

So, we dare you. We dare you to share this book with your lover.

~Evoë  & Harold

Sep 232013
 

EvoëI have a confession to make: I don’t know very much about condoms. I always have a few in case I need them, but I’m in fluid bonded relationships and the need for condoms doesn’t come up very often. I’m even more at a loss when trying to buy condoms. I know I need latex-free because I’m sensitive and my experience is that the lube on condoms can be irritating. That’s it. Does size matter? Evidently, since some condoms are too small for Joel. Everyone is different, so how do you know what to buy?

Several months ago I was contacted by an awesome new company, Lucky Bloke, offering to let me try out a couple of their sampler packs. I can’t tell you enough how impressed I am. Lucky Bloke is amazing. They have a  global condom review system so you can read about other people’s experience with each product. The CEO is a woman, and every interaction I’ve had with Lucky Bloke has been extremely helpful and positive. They really went out of their way to try to send me just the right condoms and lubes.

I’m pretty picky about my lubes. I’m a delicate flower and most lubes really irritate me. Lucky Bloke sent me 12 lube samples (exciting!) and of those, 9 were good options for me. I think this is astonishing. I can’t believe that there is a company dedicated to providing high quality lubricant sample packs. I love little packets of lube. It’s like a birthday  – sex and presents! Sometimes you need to know that your lube is sterile (like for sounding) so little packets are perfect. You can’t go wrong with portable and fun – unless you need buckets of lube. Lucky Bloke has their lube sampler on sale now, in either 6 or 12 packet packs. If you are looking for the best lube for you, I recommend the larger selection so you can try out a bunch of products. One of them is sure to suit.

As I mentioned before, I don’t use condoms very often. It took us months to work through the samples Lucky Bloke sent me. This was good, because I actually had to rethink some of the ways I have sex to see where condom use would be good – like putting a condom over my strap-on dildo in order to make clean up after pegging super simple. Female condoms are another learning experience. That’s right, condoms are not just for blokes!

condomNo matter who you are, if you are looking for the quality condoms from around the world, check this company out. As far as I can tell, the customer service is phenomenal, they have a 100% satisfaction guarantee, and they will help you figure out your size. Shipping is very reasonable, no matter where you live. Plus they donate 10% of their proceeds to charities and causes their customers select. And there is so much valuable information on their website!

Generally I like to outline the positives and negatives for a review like this, but I pretty much only have good things to say about Lucky Bloke. I might complain that they need a search function on their website and I wish that they sold my favorite lube so I could buy from them, but overall I am so happy that they found me!

Bottom line: Could you be improving your pleasure with a better condom?

Grade: A

May 222013
 

Best Sex Writing 2013Book: “Best Sex Writing 2013
Edited by: Rachel Kramer Bussel
Foreword by: Dr. Carol Queen
Published by: Cleis Press
More information: Amazon or Goodreads

 

Cleis Press and Rachel Kramer Bussel always deliver quality writing on the topic of sex, and this year’s Best Sex Writing is no exception. This collection of 20 essays span a broad range of topics, writing styles, and voices that are all provocative. While a few stirred me sexually, largely this book challenged me to think more.

The point of Best Sex Writing is to bring together all of the most fascinating essays published in the past year. Since I read a lot about sex, some of these pieces were a reread for me, but most of them were fresh. I was surprised to see a brief reference to Harold in an essay about polyamory. Weird!

I enjoyed reading through this book, but I have to say the overall tenor was discouraging. Best Sex Life’s tagline is, “The state of today’s sexual culture.” I suppose that’s true, but I found the collection to be strangely flat and depressing, almost as though a fog obscured nearly every piece. You can’t write interesting things about sexuality without engaging the emotions, and I’m afraid that very few of these grabbed me. Several made me feel very negative about sexuality. I’m afraid that our culture is still far from pleasure positive.

Still, I had to share my favorites with Harold and we’ve engaged in a little He said/She said for you enjoyment…

Very Legal: Sex and Love in Retirement, by Alex Morris: A report on love and sex in an assisted living facility.

He said: I am getting old myself… wait, can that be? Yes, I’m coming up on 65. What strikes me about aging so far is how little the core of my sex life has changed in 50 years. Well, it’s true I can’t get a good hard-on any more without Viagra, and I don’t jerk off four or five times a week like I used to, but the overwhelming joy of reaching ecstasy and sharing intimacy is still there, just the way it always has been, at the center of my life.  Alex Morris writes about people in their 80’s and 90’s, people coming up on death who are living with the inevitable failing of their bodies, who seem to be finding the same thing… sex may get more difficult physically, but still has that vibrant emotional kick to it. The story makes me happy.

She said: How delightfully refreshing to be talking about ninety-year-olds’ relationships! These are all things that I’m not thinking about yet, so I really enjoy seeing that romantic interests and libido doesn’t die as one ages. In a way, the people discussed in this essay have more freedom to be honest with themselves and each other about what they want. I’ll totally be sneaking into Harold’s bed 30 years from now.

Baby Talk, by Rachel Kramer Bussel: A personal memoir about the author’s first experience with age play and being a “Mommy.”

He said: What happens when your lover asks you to treat him/her as a child in bed?  I’m a father, I adore my children, and I’ve always felt very protective of their personal boundaries. I’ve known too many people whose fathers let sexual desire leak onto their children explicitly or subliminally, causing lasting damage. I would never want to impose adult sexuality on any child. But then… my lover asks me to make love to her as if she’s 13 years old. Oh no, I couldn’t. But she shows me that it’s healing because of her past, it’s a kind of acceptance that would be precious to her. I understand, but… does this make me a pedophile? How real is it? Are there boundaries within our imagination? It’s not an easy place, truly. I’ve gone there though, and it was possible, and healing, and good. That’s what Bussel is writing about too.

She said: Having myself been confronted with a lover’s odd kinks spontaneously in the middle of sex play, I really commend Rachel for going with it and immediately seeing the potential. Age play can be such a minefield. My heart just opened up reading this account and her willingness to push her own boundaries. This is a very sweet essay, and a bit wistful over the outcome.

Ghosts: All My Men Are Dead, by Carol Queen: A love note to the men the author is mourning, as well as a coming of age story.

He said: While sudden death can tear a hole in the fabric of reality, lingering death eats away your heart. Carol Queen writes simply and beautifully about her friends and lovers who have fallen over the years to the plague of AIDS and related syndromes. It’s so hard to know what to do with death in our culture. As she says, “I think we are ashamed to die.” By celebrating their memory and honoring her own grief, Queen makes it easier to face the losses we have to deal with and the end we all come to.

She said: This is hands down, the best essay in this book. I read it with tears silently streaming down my face. Carol is so honest, so authentic. Talking about death could easily become manipulative or maudlin, but she doesn’t go there. It’s so easy to see myself in her writing. I was incredibly moved by her account of self discovery and personal evolution entwined with dying lovers and the character of the city she loves. Hauntingly beautiful.

Lost Boys, by Kristen Hinman: An exposé on the inflated numbers of underaged girls being sex trafficked, the numbers more likely to be real because they’re based on science, and how many boys in sex work fail to get aid at all.

He said: Sex work is like recreational drugs: criminalization and demonization blur all distinctions in a fog of myth, and create the very horrors people say they want to prevent. Hinman reports on the best studies of underage prostitution in the U.S., and makes clear that nearly half the young sex workers are boys, and only around 10% work through pimps. The kids don’t particularly like doing sex for money, but they like the money. What is clear is that their main exploitation is economic: no one will offer them any other work. And the worst of this is that horrendous trafficking by adults, often parents, in very young children is put in the same bucket as teenagers choosing to make money the only way they can find, by selling sexual services. The former is a devastating crime of violence, while the latter is a symptom of our society’s economic failure.

She said: I’ve been hearing some outrageous “statistics” lately about the 3 million underage girls being pimped out and it makes me angry. Don’t get me wrong, I know that sex trafficking happens and I want it stop, but this essay made it clear that many of the organizations set up to help rescue trafficked girls exist mostly to make money for themselves. It’s a lot of politics. They aren’t even trying to understand their demographic. I really appreciated this article because it was understated and let me come to my anger on my own.

 

As always, Best Sex Writing is a must read, if only to get a snapshot of the year in sexuality. This year, I came away with two main points, one personal and one a universal truth. Personally, I discovered that I really dislike the term “open marriage” to describe polyamory. It’s kinda like asking a pair of lesbians which one gets to be the man. It is using the rules of the cultural norm to define something totally outside of the rules. But, whatever. The most important thing I learned was that sexuality changes all the time throughout life. I find that very reassuring.

Apr 042013
 

Clone-A-WillyThe applications of Clone-A-Willy are endless – what couldn’t you do with an exact replica of your (or your guy’s) penis, a vibrating portable model? I asked Clone-A-Willy to send me a kit to review because I was entranced with the possibilities. I could masturbate with his cock when we were apart. He could literally fuck himself(!?!) Problem was, I had two guys and one kit, but after some checking around, we determined that everyone would be okay if I fucked Harold with Joel’s cock. We would clone Joel’s willy. I love my crazy life.

Clone-A-Willy sent me a DVD along with the kit that demonstrated how the process works. It is unintentionally funny. I believe that the stars of this little video are porn stars. While I did get a good idea of what to do, the absurdity of the situation had me laughing. I would absolutely recommend reading the written instructions thoroughly before you start.

Supplies for Clone-A-WillyJoel and I sent to work while we had the house to ourselves. This is not a process that you want to interrupt in the middle. Cloning your willy is pretty simple, but there are several steps: mix up the molding powder, insert penis into molding tube, pour rubber into the prepared mold, insert vibrating unit, wait 24 hours and remove new vibrator.

The tricky parts are getting the water just the right temperature to mix with the molding powder and the fact that you have a very short amount of time to mix it up and get your dick into it. And cloning a willy is also very messy. I don’t think we were prepared for how much of the molding material would be displaced. We did trim his pubic hair, but shaving might have been better. I was also glad that we were in the kitchen over the tile floor, because it cleaned up pretty easily.

Clone-A-Willy in ProcessThis is a partners sport. I think you could do this by yourself, but having someone there helping you to maintain an erection is easier and more fun. We certainly enjoyed the process, but it wasn’t inherently sexy. A cock ring helps some, however our resulting dong sadly did not capture Joel in his full glory.

This instant gratification grrrl had a hard time waiting a whole day for the rubber to set. I was excited to pull away the molding material and reveal the hot pink cock model. It’s eerie how much detail is transferred. There is a slight imperfection where the vibrator shows through. I think it’s where Joel was somewhat diagonal in the molding tube.

I was so excited about Clove-A-Willy that it wasn’t until we were partway through the process that the fact we were dealing with rubber penetrated my brain. I’m allergic to rubber. I welt up massively when rubber touches my skin, a fact I learned after applying liquid latex to my breasts. Even underwear with exposed elastic raises large welts. I can’t use this vibrator.

Clone-A-Willy rubber in the moldActually, I’m not sure that anyone should use a willy clone without a condom. Rubber toys should not be shared without a condom and they are quite porous so they should be washed carefully and gently after each use. Mild antibacterial soap and water is appropriate.

Since I love the concept of Clone-A-Willy and enjoyed the molding process, I brainstormed a few ideas. First of all, Clone-A-Willy makes kits for soap, candles, and milk chocolate. Pretty romantic, right? But then we came up with a few other ideas…

What if you inserted sticks instead of vibrators? Then you would have a penis on a stick and you could have “cock fights” with your friends. Clone-A-Willy comes in a variety of colors. I’m envisioning color coordinated cocks and helmets, with full out, SCA style battles. It would be AWESOME!

Clone-A-Willy flawMy favorite idea is to take impressions of all of your conquests and mount them on plaques like hunting trophies. There’s even Clone-A-Pussy. Imagine sitting in your den in a smoking jacket explaining your sexual successes to some young thing, “Sure, he doesn’t look like much, but let me tell you…” and “Yes, I bagged that one on holiday in Spain…” and “Oh, that Romeo, hung like a stallion, but he snored like a bull…” I can totally see it. It makes me happy.

 

Bottom line: Everyone should try Clone-A-Willy at least once. Think out side the box.

Grade: B

Mar 142013
 

Fun Factory Stronic ZweiStronic Zwei is a jackhammer of pleasure. Seriously. I’ve just taken to calling it The Jackhammer, as in, “Honey, grab The Jackhammer and let’s have some fun!” In fact, it’s made by Fun Factory (one of my favorite sex toy companies) and they sent us one to try out ahead of their official release in July. We are extremely impressed. This is a high-end, well designed, very effective sex toy.

Zwei is so innovative and different that I don’t know how to describe it. The Stronic line uses new technology to create thrust. Stronic Zwei literally rocks back and forth in your hand. It creates amazing sensations on the prostate and g-spot, although not at the same time. It uses more of a natural fucking motion than a buzz. This is not a vibrator it’s a pulsator, and it’s here to rock your world.

I’m pleased with Zwei’s construction. It’s very solid and can definitely stand up to the repeated thrusting. Counter pressure did not seem to slow the toy down. The one I received is blue, but I suspect that it will also be available in black. Soft medical grade silicone covers the insertable part, with the handle being firmer.

There are three control buttons on the handle, one for power (press FUN) and two to navigate the 10 different pulse cycles (press + or  -). While the buttons are located in a place where you can easily operate them yourself, it can sometimes be difficult to find the right button during use. All of the rhythm pattern options are useful and pleasurable at different times. We had a hard time finding exactly the one we wanted at any given time, but I assume that gets easier with practice. Our favorite is the slowest of the thrusting patterns. An added feature is the ability to key lock the Zwei so it doesn’t go off at an inopportune moment, like during a TSA search.

Fun Factory Stronic Zwei controls and magnetic chargerAlso on the handle are two little magnetic buttons – this is where the charging cord docks. It’s totally easy to use, but be prepared to have to charge your new device overnight (they say not more than 16 hours), as ours needed to be fully charged. That’s always disappointing for me when I want to try something out right away! It has held the charge well so far. We’ve, ahem, tested this product extensively without having to recharge it yet.

And guess what?!? Zwei is fully immersible!  Although I am a little nervous to risk losing such a fantastic toy, I can’t wait to use it in the bath or shower. It just can’t go in the dishwasher. Cleaning has not been a problem though. I simply wash Zwei with soap and water. It would be possible to use it with a condom, use spray on toy cleaner, or cleansing wipes.

One of the brilliant things about the way Stronic Zwei is constructed is the lip at the bottom of the insertable part. It looks kind of like the hilt of a knife, or the protective bit under a torch. Not only does this lip keep Zwei from getting lost in your bottom, it also works to contain any potential mess. Yes, you are probably going to need a fair amount of water-based lube to get this toy into your ass.

Stronic Zwei is fairly girthy. Harold and I enjoy prostate play, but this was bigger than anything we’ve put in his bum so far. We worked up to it without any difficulty, though, once the toy was turned on. The thrusting motion made it slip in easily. In each of us it seemed to be just big enough to have a sexy feeling of fullness without ever becoming uncomfortable. Zwei also has that bend at the tip to deliver pressure to just the right spot. It feels good in my hand. Harold says it’s way the best prostate toy he’s ever experienced (and he’s done some experimenting). As he put it, “Whoever designed this toy really knew what they were doing!”

This toy is perfectly usable by yourself, but I recommend it for partner play. I think it’s easier to operate if you are not in the throes of pleasure, but really, don’t you want to share the intensity of this pleasure with someone you love? I got a huge rush knowing that I was part of the experience when Harold just lay there with his mouth open, moaning. I got to help by playing with his balls and cock. I like to ramp things up. I enjoy watching him writhe.

Fun Factory Stronic Zwei in useFun Factory is marketing Zwei as an anal toy, but generally anything that works on the prostate also is effective at g-spot stimulation. After watching Harold bliss out with the Zwei in his bum a couple of times, I had to try it on myself! I wasn’t disappointed. It feels fantastic. It doesn’t give me the same sensations as Harold’s fingers, but it’s good in a different way. I did use a vibrator on my clit and the combination was perfect. I especially liked coming with the Zwei in, my orgasm contracting against the continuing pulses and bringing me to orgasm again. Awesome!

I don’t know how much Fun Factory is going to retail Stronic Zwei for, but I think we would find a way to buy one, knowing how good it is.

Bottom line: Yes, yes, please yes!

Grade: A

Jul 292012
 

I Rub My DuckieA vibrating sound is occurring somewhere in my room and I can’t pinpoint the culprit. It’s not coming from my bag of sex toys. It’s not my computer. It’s not the lights humming. It’s not coming from outside. It seems to be emanating from a diorama constructed of my pre-schooler’s toys, but she’s not anywhere around. I look around the room some more. Nothing. I go back to the toys and realize that the centerpiece is in fact a vibrator – a vibrator that looks like an adorable giant rubber duck.

I Rub My Duckie is the most cheerful sex toy I’ve ever seen. Babeland was nice enough to send it to me and make me laugh. (There are so many obvious jokes!) Don’t think that this is just a novelty item, however. This tub toy packs some serious vibration! If you are willing to fuck a duck, this baby will rock your world.

My biggest complaint is that it looks too much like a child’s toy. It blends in well. My kids are all drawn to it. The minute I had it out of the package my children were instantly present, as though my Duckie had summoned them. My eight year old took it out of my hands and examined it. “We need a screwdriver to put batteries in it,” he informed me. “It doesn’t look watertight. I bet you can’t really take it in the bath.” Where did this kid come from?

Harold agreed with him, but the two of the worked together to get batteries (2 AA’s) into it. It’s serious business. Powered up, the Duckie loudly vibrated across the kitchen floor, to the 3 year old’s delight. You have to squeeze the duck’s tummy pretty hard to turn it on.(Yes, I know.) It cycles through 3 speeds before it shuts off, which is kind of a pain if you want to shut it off quick. It’s very loud no matter what. I’m not sure how they justify calling it quiet. This is not a subtle vibe, but it is strong.

Surprisingly, I Rub My Duckie is totally waterproof and can indeed go in the bath. We had a lot of fun in the bathtub, me and Duckie! I love how the vibrations create ripples across the water. I also like how my duck can just sit on the edge of the tub looking cute, unlike my vibrator, which really just looks like a vibrator and isn’t something I want to explain to children or guests. Like I mentioned before though, it makes a lot of noise and makes all the kids come running to see what is happening – not conducive to Momma getting off.

One of the most interesting features of I Rub My Duckie is the variety of surfaces. For example, the tail feels more intense than the head. Or you can use both ends at once! Or tickle yourself with the beak! It can be fun to explore the different sensations, although I also felt kind of silly. I mean, I’ve never had a duck eat me out before.

I Rub My Duckie in the bathI Rub My Duckie is unbearably cute, but ultimately, I don’t think I’ll be using it as a vibrator. On the plus side, it’s strong enough to get me off, made of body safe materials, and I can use it in the bathtub. On the minus, it’s loud, difficult to turn on and off, and a bit awkward to use. In my world it looks too much like a toy for me to keep it to myself.

Bottom line: this duckie is hardworking, but too cute for his own good.

Grade: B

 

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Jun 172012
 

Passionate UAre there things about sex that you would like to know, but are too afraid to ask someone? When you google your sex questions do you get a million porn hits or highly questionable responses? Do you long for simple, straightforward demonstrations and explanations on a broad range of sexual topics? I can fix you up.

I recently spent some time exploring Passionate U, a website dedicated to helping adults answer any question about sexuality. (More advanced BDSM type questions are addressed on the sister site, Kink Academy.)  Each site features a multitude of short video clips (average 3-5 minutes) from well known sex educators and other sex professionals. The faculty is currently over 50 people and constantly expanding. They add new videos each week!

The website is well organized and easy to use. You have to agree to their waiver every time you enter the site, which only makes sense. You can then select one of the options available on the main page: sensual, sexy, kinky, relationships, health, or academic. If that doesn’t work, you can try a search term or sort by skill level, toy, topic, or faculty member. I was able to easily find the videos that interested me. And the brilliant thing is that if a specific video wasn’t working for me, I could just stop it and find another.

I should make a confession. I’m not a very patient person. I don’t watch a lot of online videos because I can’t stand to wait while they are loading. I occasionally had this problem with Passionate U. When everyone in my house was on the internet, I was unable to successfully watch videos and it drove me wild with frustration. Passionate U does have a very good help section for troubleshooting viewing problems, but ultimately I had to wait until I was home alone.

Passionate U has many videos available for free, so you can get an idea of what to expect. Check them out and seriously consider paying for a membership in order to have full access. They offer several options, starting at $24.95USD/month.

I learned so much in the 2 weeks I was trialing the site. I took in information about squirting, pegging, senior sex, consent, negotiating awkward social situations, oral sex, legal ramifications, sex positions, and much, much more. I especially appreciated the segment on intact cocks because it was an up close guided tour of an uncircumcised penis. Where else could I get this kind of visual? I haven’t seen an up-close and personal example since I was a teen living in Europe and not many men would just drop their pants for me so I could explore. Well, maybe they would, but that’s not the point!

Go look at Passionate U. These people have a lot to offer and they are serious about adult sex education. I promise  you’ll learn something.

 

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Jun 142012
 

When Babeland sent me the most epic vibrator of all time to review, a Hitachi Magic Wand, I immediately thought of the epic woman who introduced me to the Magic Wand, my metamour, Melanie. Here are her own words, explaining why you need to have a Hitachi:

Melanie with the Hitachi Magic WandIf You Don’t Have a Hitachi Magic Wand, Go Get One!
guest review by Melanie

The Hitachi Magic Wand is the best vibrator ever. To say I recommend it highly is an understatement. If I were stuck on a desert island with ten things, and one of them was a generator, another would be a Magic Wand.

It’s not just me who thinks this. It really is the gold standard of vibrators. On the Internet, people say things like, “The Hitachi Magic Wand Massager is the best thing I ever bought my girlfriend for Christmas” and “Now I know why it’s called the OMG machine.” Betty Dodson, sex expert of sex experts, recommends it for women trying for their first orgasm. A few people complain about it, but don’t listen to the complaining. It’s like people who go to fish restaurants wanting steak. The Hitachi delivers on the thing it’s supposed to do: Give you a great clitoral orgasm.

The person who introduced me to the Magic Wand was my first girlfriend. She was amazed I’d never tried it, and she insisted I get one right away, jumping up and down and squeaking in her passion. She was right. Later on, my raves and our experience with it led a boyfriend of mine to buy an extra for me and also one for his wife. She raved too. Every woman I know, once she’s had a chance to use it a while, has given her thumbs-up.

Why is it the best? It’s intense. For some people it’s too intense, and for them I’d recommend what my girlfriend did, which was to put some layers of cloth between you and it. A pillowcase, a sheet, your jeans, whatever works. The point is, it’s intense enough that for me the orgasm is pretty much a sure thing, unless I’m exhausted. It is the promise of the sure orgasm that makes the Magic Wand magic.

It’s also the right shape for clitoral application. I know it has an attachment for G-spot play, but to me that’s just window-dressing—G-spot play is not what I use the Magic Wand for. It’s for that day-to-day, “I just want to come” thing, the bread and butter of vibrator use. For that, it’s perfect. Though it’s heavy and big, it’s maneuverable for something its size. And it’s made like a real appliance: It’s not some gacky purple or fluorescent green, it feels solid in your hand, and it holds up to intensive use.

For anyone who really likes intense sensation, it’s the only vibe I know that has such strength. It has two settings, but I rarely use the faster one. The strong vibration means strong orgasms. Like I say, it can take getting used to, but I’d recommend making the effort. It will reward you.

The only downside is that it’s a bit noisy. So put a pillow over it.

Buy one. Buy two, one for home and one for travel. (Though don’t do what I did and burn it out in a French hotel because you forgot the adapter. Quelle tragédie! It only works on 120-volt AC current.)

The Magic Wand is magic.