Thursday, December 28, 2006

A quick one while he is away

Just a short update, dear reader, as today finds your humble narrator up to his eyeballs in work and running like mad to get it all done. What you ask makes this any different than most of my posts as of late? Well today also happens to be the day that I am reunited with my lover, Dancer. After more than a week (8 days, 12 hours and 36 minutes to be exact, but who is counting?) I’m more than a wee bit, shall we say, motivated to my to-do list completed and once again bask in her warm embrace.

So while I dash about and count the hours, I thought you might enjoy a great quote I heard yesterday from a friend. She was talking about poly, about doing the more difficult things involved with being poly. She said to me, “The thing about courage is that it is not about the absence of fear, rather it is about committing to something in spite of your fears”

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Couln't happen to a better person.

My friend (and fetish photographer extraodinare) Michele Serchuk has a piece about her in ErosZine. You should go check it out. I have worked with her in the past and loved the experince.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Rantus Inturuptus

Damn, I hate it when this happens. I had a great rant forming, a big old “Cleveland Steamer” of a bitch in the works. See this is “dead week”; the plan was to take this week off, but guess who is working today? Yup, me. The Abbey is cold, I’m behind in getting ready for Boston, my laptop is looking like it is going to need to back to the shop… again, I gotta start closing the books for ’06, I have nothing creative to blog about and I can’t seem to make this batch of violet turn of for the life of me.

Oh man, we are talking a full on foot-stomping whine fest here folks.

Then I get e-mail from a charming girl with whom I have been flirting with for, oh like 4 fucking years now. A wonderful, sexy butch girl with whom most of Seattle would love to get thier rope around. We have discussed doing something for ages, but schedules and such have kept this a "sometime we really should do something" sort of thing. Well as luck would have it, we will both be attending the same party next week and she would like to play. Not only does she want to get tied up by me, but so does her girlfriend… at the same time.

Yup, Sweaty Lesbian Fuck-Ball 2, Electric Bugaloo.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Done, done, city of done

Thank the gods the holiday season is done, today marks the close of the 4th Twisted Monk Christmas season. Its not that I dislike the idea of Christmas. Heck a day were you give presents to folks and generally be nice to strangers, the whole time enjoying a nice glass of eggnog seems like a right good idea. However after spending the better part of my college years chucking boxes for UPS and now running a retail company, Christmas is something I mildly dread. When you have several hundred customers counting on you to deliver their Christmas dreams on time, it does not give one much bandwidth to worry about what they want. My pat answer, when asked what I wanted for the holiday was to quote the Bard, “I’d trade all my fame for a pot of ale and safety”

Melodramatic I know, but then again I tend to have a flair for such things.

On the plus side, this has been an amazing Christmas. Grated, a long, hard uphill battle of one against giant robots with flamethrowers, but amazing none the less. Seems like the 4 weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas were some of the toughest I have ever experienced. Between snow storms, a first showing at a huge east coast event, flooding, me injuring my hand, windstorms ripping my little house up and the subsequent 4 day blackout (is it just me our you would not have been surprised if it started raining frogs next?) and though it all we soldered on and prevailed. In spite of all the things that should have crippled us, things that should have sent us packing our bags and calling it a day, we had a great Christmas season.

If the old adage is true, that which does not kill you only makes you stronger, then this year we are titans. Scared, soot stained in places, and sometimes sporting a “thousand yard stare” yet undaunted and unstoppable.

So it was an odd moment on Friday night, when we gathered for our little leather family Christmas. An evening together as a “family”, as odd as it is, before being scattered to the four winds. Alex, Nerdy, Tambo and I gathered around the table and feasted together, enjoying the spread laid out before us (and a few too many spiked glasses of eggnog) before decorating the little, Nerdy sized tree and exchanging gifts it had yet to gel in my brain. See I was too busy at the time enjoying my glass of whiskey and making “Christmas is all about butt sex, just look at the angel on the tree” jokes, for it to become crystal clear my brain. No it was not until later, when everyone, dressed in their pajamas, piled onto Tambo and I’s huge bed and listened as I indulged my readers theater fetish and read aloud to them.

I think Alex was just beginning to fall asleep, head on my thigh, when it finally hit me.

Everything, from the meal we enjoyed, the tree we just decorated, the gifts under it, even the bed we were all now snuggling up in were all bought and paid for by a little rope company that I started at the very kitchen table where we just ate. Thousands of happy perverts the world over had given us this, our Christmas. While I much prefer my whiskey to a “pot of ale”, this was, just what I had asked for.

A pot of ale and safety.

Dancer, Alex and Nerdy have all now returned to their bio families to enjoy the rest of the holiday, leaving Tambo and I to enjoy several glorious days of peace and “just us” time.

There is still much to do at the Abbey, more orders to fill and fun projects in the works, but I shant return for a few days. Choosing instead to bask in a few, well-earned, days off. I’m not sure what the New Year holds for us, save more orders that I will undoubtedly complain about here and lots of rope.

Lots and lots of rope.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Y2K Beer

Well it seems like life is finally starting to return to some state of normal after the whole storm/blackout/living in the Abbey ordeal. All things considered, this really sucked a major load of ass. While I am glad that I lost power at my home and not my workshop (trying to fill all those holiday orders in a dark shop would have been a worse nightmare than sleeping in my office for 4 days) the entire event was not as bad as it could have been. At least I did not have to tap into my secret stock of Y2K beer, the true marker of a disaster.

What is a Y2K beer you ask?

Back in the early 90’s when I was working on my undergrad (I have a degree in Rhetoric & Propaganda if you must know) I was attending a school that was the arch rival of the college my elder brother attended. Now being brothers meant that we were naturally competitive at just about everything. It was originally his idea, the bet, he loved football far more than I. The bet was simple, who’s ever team won that week the other owed them a 6pack of beer. If both teams won (or lost) it was a push so no beer was owed, but if one’s team won their week AND the other’s lost… well then that mean a 12 pack was owed.

Now this happened to be the year that my school, through some miracle or drug related scandal I’m not sure and don’t care, won every damn game they played. An entire season, undefeated. As if to add insult to injury, my brother’s school suffered their worst season in 60 years. These guys were loosing to the likes of St. Mary’s School for the Blind.

Needless to say my brother got tired of delivering a fresh half case of beer to me every week. Since we never bothered to put in a “no crappy beer” clause into the bet, my brother started going out of his way to pay off his weekly beer debt with the worst possible beer he could find. It started humorously enough with beer that featured wild life artwork and then quickly digressed into beer featuring cartoon wildlife. Till he found the ultimate beer, the beer that not even he would dare to drink. Generic beer. I have no idea where he found them, to my knowledge the whole “White label with black lettering” thing went out of fashion in the early 80’s, but somewhere he found a ½ case of generic beer.

To this day I have not dared open the cans for fear of what lay inside. Rather I stuck them on a shelf in my garage and during the whole “Y2K Disaster Hysteria” I branded them as part of my preparedness kit. My logic, if shit got so damn bad that I’m actually going to drink this stuff then it will comfort me as I lay dying or it will poison me and put me out of what ever misery is waiting for me.

Monday, December 18, 2006

"I would give all my fame for a pot of ale and safety."*
Tambo and I are finally home. Power was restored late Monday afternoon. Even with the heat cranked to 11, the house still feels as cold as a crypt. We are not even going to dare open the fridge till tomorrow, who knows what horrors await us after 4 days with no power. Our front room is littered with the debris of our uprooted lives. I love my shop, but lets face facts. The Abbey is an ancient industrial warehouse afterall and spending the better part of a week in your workshop can get pretty tiresome.

Damn am I glad to be home.

I can't be too relieved, there are still folks in the dark who are waiting to return home too. My heart goes out to ya.

*Shakespeare, Henry V

Sunday, December 17, 2006

We drove by the house again tonight in hopes that we might finally be able to return to our own bed. Again, we were met with only stony silence and a very cold house. Driving home we spotted a full crew of workers from City Light. They were but a block from our home and it looked like they were going to go up the pole and do something. What, we really did not care. After three days of living and sleeping in the Abbey, any sort of power related progress was a welcome sight. Lacking anything more entertaining to do, we parked a safe distance away and watched them work from inside the warmth of out car.

Trucks pulled up, workers milled about, supervisors supervised and eventually two brave (and very tired looking) souls climbed into the basket and rose up to the address the wayward power pole. Wires were twisted; items replaced and important looking things were checked and re-checked. The hope in our chest rose as the streetlights began to flicker on after so many days dormant. Homes began to come alight and we let out an involuntary cheer as it looked like soon our lives would also return to some relative state of normal.

Then in an instant the space where the top of the pole used to be was replaced by a huge, blinding flash of blue white light. Sparks exploded in every direction as bits of ceramics came screaming to earth like Fourth of July fireworks. Tambo says it was sparks, I say it was fire, but whatever it was it filled the night sky for an instant and was gone with a sudden KER-BLAM!

Then we heard the shouting.

“I’m cool, I’m cool. Damnit! I hate it when that happens!” Came from the men in the basket. Either by miracle or this happens more than one might think, nobody was hurt. The workers calmly un-did the wiry bits and then lowered themselves to the ground.

Perhaps we will not have power tonight. However in a stroke of karmic payback, those houses on my block with the Christmas lights? You know, the ones who left them on all weekend as if to mock those of us still in the dark? Yep, they are now in the dark as well.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Hopes were high as we drove back to check on our house. Most of West Seattle seemed to be retuning to a relative state of normal. Streetlights were on, businesses open, with each passing block our hopes rose… tonight we might get to sleep in our own beds.

Power has been restored to within ONE FUCKING BLOCK OF MY HOUSE. Yep. The houses across the back alley have power; the folks at the end of the block have it too. Us? Our block is still cold and as silent as a tomb. Now as if to add insult to injury, the houses at the end of the block all have their damn Christmas lights on too as if to mock us and our poor placement on the power grid.


Friday, December 15, 2006

Deep Black

If you are watching the news then you probably already have heard about the “great Seattle blackout”. City light is reporting that something like 50% of the city is currently with out power. My neighborhood is one of those. Driving home there were pockets of light, a convenience store here and a building there, but mostly just vast expanses of black. Funny how the city looks when there are no street lights.

Nerdy is also with out power. Most of the motels are booked up with families fleeing the dark and cold restaurants are standing room only as folks try to get in a decent meal. What of us you ask?

We are all bedding down in the Abbey tonight. Up in my loft office it is warm (mostly), we have power, and bandwidth. Funny, for all the complaining I do about how cold and damp the Abbey can be right now this is the warmest, most welcoming place in the world right now.

Send Lawyers Guns and Money

Everyone knows that I am a rampant fan of the zombie movie. Not just for the gore, but also for the social commentary as well. How does humanity respond when that thin veneer we call “Civilization” is peeled away and we are forced to fight for our survival. As with any good zombie film, the key is always location. Where do you stage your last stand? That deserted farmhouse on a hill or a suburban shopping mall? As they say in real estate, location, location, location. Needless to say I’m always looking at places going, “hmm I wonder if this place would make for a good zombie hold out?”

Part of the charm of the Abbey, for me, is that it would actually make for a damn good zombie survival bunker. Thick walls, high fences, redundant water and power feeds, blacksmiths (talk about the weapons you could make!) and even bio diesel fuel depot next door.

Last night there was a wind storm in Seattle. A killer of a storm that has knocked power out for most of the city. This is not good, today is the last big push day for Christmas orders! When I left Dancer’s home this morning and gingerly navigated the blacked streets and downed trees I put a call into Tambo. Yep, the power went out at our house too, same with Nerdy’s. However, they were all at the Abbey safe and warm. The power was on, coffee on to brew and she even brought in a crock pot so we could have some warm soup later.

So, when the zombie invasion comes, make for the Abbey… but bring coffee we are running low.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Its a sign! Monk must be stopped!

Hannah found this yesterday while out walking her dog. What, does someone in Texas have it out for me?

In other news, don't forget the last day to place Christmas orders is this Friday, December 15th! Stock is going fast so don't wait till the last minute.

OK, I need to get back to it. Cooking up a huge batch of violet while listening to the new Decemberists. (Nerdy loves this band and is working overtime to convert me, I'm not too sure. They sound sorta like a happier/better medicated Pouges)
Edit: On second thought, they sound more like Jethro Tull, with out that "I spent the weekend at a ren faire" funk about them. The jury is still out on this band.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Say a prayer for our postman. That poor beleaguered soul in a blue uniform. After 2 years he still is not quite sure what to make of the residents of #15. That shop, tucked away in the back of a huge old industrial building, every time he brings us a parcel, some package from Asia or a certified letter from Bulgaria, he looks around the abbey with a bewildered gaze. These days, when we are not piling him up with outgoing boxes he is also bringing us care packages from our wonderful customers.

Yes, the cookies have begun to arrive in earnest.

Now, I really should not complain. I know several kink entrepreneurs who would kill to have customers, let alone loyal, repeat customers who like you enough to send you tins of homemade cookies at Christmas. The thing is, at the risk of sounding so totally vain that I can’t believe I’m even typing this; I can finally fit into my 33-inch waist jeans. While I can resist most temptations, the siren’s call of fresh baked goods is my Achilles heel. Put a cup of fresh coffee in my hands and I’m powerless to resist the pull of a good baked goodie.

There I said it. I have a baked goods addiction.

Thing is, I’m always so touched that folks would go to the trouble to do something so nice as to actually send us goodies. That kind of generosity is rare and I’m quite blown away by it.

So, in lieu of baked goods what is a good way to wish Monk a happy holiday and generally say thank you? Good question.

Know what I really, really need this holiday? Time with my massage therapist.

This woman has amazing, magical powers. Remember the knuckle I messed up getting ready for Black Rose? She spent 30 minutes working on it last Saturday, thirty minutes working on a single finger and it now feels so much better-A far cry from last week when I could barely make a fist with out wincing.

This year, when folks ask me what I want for Christmas, I tell them with out pause, time with Leilani. So to those of you who are thinking about boxing up some goodies and sending them along to the Abbey, save your postage. Give those yummy cookies to your postman, I’m sure they would love them. Rather, send a buck or two to the “Keep Monk’s Hands Happy” fund and know that it will be the most welcome gift of the year.

My hands, my waist line and my postman thanks you.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Welcome to hell week boys and girls,
And so starts the last big push before Christmas. We will make and ship out more rope in the next 7 days than we do in a month. Lots and lots of happy perverts have been asking Santa for rope this year, god bless them all. Needless to say, I'm pretty much planning on living at the Abbey for the next 7 days.

At least I have good people here to keep me company. Not quite sure how frequent the updates will be, save the occasional, "elf needs coffee, badly", but who knows.

Now while I wait for this batch of black to cool, enjoy some random video goodness.
Mrs. Wozy, this one goes out to you. The Matrix, as done by Bollywood. Then there is the matter of Marry Poppins, re-cut as a horror film.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

This happens like clockwork
I ramp up for an event, travel cross country to said event, go like mad for X days at event, come home, re-unite with those I love and miss and then...
then I get sick.



Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Before I can start telling tales from Black Rose, we need to do some business first.

Christmas Orders and Delivery Times

High quality rope takes time to make, time to dry and time to ship to your door. If you want your order in time for the holiday. Domestic orders have until Wednesday December 15th. Don't wait till the last second to place your order.

If you are not sure or need extra help in order to get that perfect gift ready in time, call the Abbey and talk to us directly at 206.938.7527

Osada Steve Rope and DVD Bundle Sale

The response to our latest addition to the Twistedmonk line of rope, Osada Steve's Authentic Shibari Rope, has been so well received that we decided to take it a step farther and bundle this great new rope with Steve's amazing live performance DVDs into one great package. Get 6 lengths of the Natural 7M length rope and all 3 volumes of his live DVD for only $189.99. That is a savings of over 40 bucks! Or pick up the same kit in red or black for only 215.99 and save over 50 bucks!

Still on the fence? Why not try a 4-rope bundle? 4 lengths of 7MM Natural Osada Steve Authentic Shibari Rope value priced at just 99.99, that's a savings of $16.00. Or pick up a Red or Black bundle for only $119.99, a 20.00 savings.

Lastly, Gray has posted the results of the GLROMO contest on his site. Congratulations to all the winners. Congrats to everyone who entered and won. I met the grand prize winners this last weekend at BR, really wonderfully sweet folks. Congratulations again and a big shout out to Gray for all his hard work in organizing and running this contest.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Quick note,

The event is done, just about to catch a cab to the airport. Dead ass, fucking tired. Like worn to the bone tired. I have met some great new friends as well as reconnected with some old ones as well. However, as it the case with long shows away from home. I really can't wait to get home. Doing 4-6 major shows a year takes it toll. I have no idea how folks can manage to do 20-30 of these kind of shows a year.

The sheer homesickness would kill me.

Someone asked about photos. There won't be any photos of the 2-girl tie I did on Saturday. However there is a good story in the works. It involves using face bondage as a strap on harness. Now there should be a photo soon of the rigging I did last night. A puppet / living doll suspension I did as a sort of inmpromtu thing with my crazy friends at Big Head Studios. As soon as I have shots I will share them. I know there are several readers who were part of the BR staff, if you can hook me up with the event photographer that would be really helpfull.

Top things off, the nice folks at Fleshbot have taken a shine to those instructional videos we made. So traffic (and new customer orders) have shot up through the roof. Looks like as soon as I get home it will be right back to the grindstone for me.

If I am lucky and the snow in Chicago is not too bad, I should be home before dinner.

PS Dancer, I think I'm having email issues today. My last couple to you have bounced back. I miss you so much I can taste it and can't wait to see you. I'll call as soon as I am home.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

I’m so damn tired.
I just spent the last 3 hours tying up the cutest pair of baby dykes ever. There is nothing quite like taking two bodies that already are drawn to each other and add to that gravitational pull by wrapping them up in rope all the while twisting and turning their limbs into an intertwined mass of hemp and desire.

Once untied, they lay together in a pile and smile so bright that their eyes actually twinkled, yes I said twinkle, and they called out in unison, “Thank you Monk!”

I have the coolest job in the world.