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He took my Cyber Cherry.

I was on WordPress about a half hour when I started getting emails from complete strangers.

I suppose that’s to be expected, when you cruise around leaving comments that make you sound like Slut Bag McFucksticks  sassy.

 

Dear Samara:
I am currently incarcerated in the state of Kentucky for murders I did not commit. I would love to get to know you. Perhaps when I am released, I can take you to a White Supremacy meeting and then for a Starbucks Pumpkin Latte? In the meantime, I would appreciate it if you would masturbate and send me your panties.

Sincerely,
Guy Who Keeps Severed Heads in His Refrigerator

 

When an incredibly sweet, sincere man emailed me, politely asking if he could write me, I was thrilled.

Don’t roll your eyes. I was NEW here.

The politeness lasted about a day. It escalated quickly, into declarations of attraction and discussing the possibilities of what we would do if we actually were with one another.

It was my inauguration into the seamy and titillating underbelly of the online world. That’s what happened to a lot of us who got married before the Internet revolutionized communication and fundamentally changed the way we lead our lives.

We never sexted.

 

Did you know there are sexting acronyms?

GYPO – Get your pants off

GNRN – Get naked right now

FMH – Fuck me harder

 

And the lesser known:

MPICIMFP – My penis is caught in my flip phone

AMAMCF – Ask me about my cheese fetish

GERE – I have a thing for gerbils

BALL911 – Call 911, balls sliced badly while shaving

DANZA – I just had sex with Tony Danza

 

I was baffled by the logistics. What exactly is the objective? I only have two hands. Are we supposed to be masturbating? And then typing? And masturbating? And typing?

Even though women have been scientifically proven to be quite good at multi-tasking, I’m strongly right handed. I tend to rely a lot on that hand for both masturbating AND typing. So, simultaneously, neither of them are getting done efficiently.

 

My new online friend became my new best friend, emailing me all day, every day. Having someone who is that interested in you is a heady feeling.

Until they’re not.

With no warning, he suddenly dropped off the face of the earth. I was devastated, because I didn’t know back then how poorly people can treat one another in the cyber world.

 

I got over it. Obviously. And went on to form amazing friendships in the online world.

 

 

I actually healed my relationship with my very first online friend. We’ve moved past what happened between us; how insensitive he was, and how badly I acted towards him as a result. He was in the middle of a horrible time in his life, and disappearing like that was not something he meant personally towards me.

I love our online friendship now. It’s filled with genuine affection and admiration for one another. And I believe him to be, like many people, a good, though flawed, human being whose heart is in the right place.

 

Or…is it?

 

Recently, I’ve become close with a talented erotica writer. She’s had her share of online drama, and eventually, opened up to me about some of the specifics of her online dalliances.

 

At one point, she was very attracted to the same man who had pursued me online. And she sent him gorgeously written, very sexy erotica stories – via Facebook messenger. Stories about the two of them.

Basically, she was sexting the beejesus out of him, and he was loving it! Who wouldn’t?

The juicy part of this tale? She began pouring her sexual heart out to him exactly at the time when he abruptly withdrew from my life.

 

Oh, shit.

REALLY?

 

I’m sure his life did implode. But these dates are too exact to be coincidental.

Ugh. I suppose, on some level, I wanted to think I was “special” (Stop fucking rolling your eyes at me!)

 

He was one of the few honorable men I’ve met online. I know there are many; I just don’t attract them (jeez, I wonder why? Maybe it’s because I blog about blow jobs and dildos and sluts, oh my!)

And I guess, even the most honorable…are not so? I’m not certain. My bullshit radar doesn’t work well online.

 

The proliferation of technologies like social networks, instant and ephemeral messaging, and even basic stuff like e-mail, has made the online world a breeding ground for some unhealthy interactions. It’s a rogue’s paradise; a dystopian Mad-Max type of culture for which there are no repercussions for many kinds of sociopathic behavior.

Add to that the availability of sexual stimulation 24/7, and we have a major societal mess on our hands.

 

The sad thing for me is how unfazed I am by all this. A year ago, as a newbie, I would have been devastated to learn how easily someone can switch sexting partners. Now? It seems par for the course.

 

HOWEVER

I may have lost a bit of my sparkle, but I’m not tarnished.

I believe in the power of online friendships. I have been supported online in ways that I never have in real life. I have too many loving, loyal online friends, male and female, NOT to believe in them.

I will say, though, that the best of my online friends – we’ve moved past “online only” and have texted, spoken or Skyped. If I’ve known you online a long time, and I absolutely have to log into Facebook to interact with you,

are we really friends?

 

If there’s anyone left out there who is new to these kinds of exchanges, please consider this:

If someone is willing to get sexual with you online, male or female, this is probably what that person does. In general. It doesn’t mean they’re wrong, or you’re wrong, or sexting is wrong.

It’s just not unique to YOU.

 

Technology has completely changed the notion of space and time, breaking down barriers in ways we never thought possible. And online sexual relationships have never been easier, thanks to cellphones, text messaging, social networks – and shifting ethics.

What hasn’t changed is the need to feel special. Behind the words on your screen, right now, is ME.

A living breathing person, whose heart beats real blood.

Think about that before you hit “send.”

 

09

 

Have you had some strange online encounters?  Or do you tend to keep away from that world?
Talk to me.  I’m listening. 

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Do you hear that?

Come closer.

 

That’s the sound of my heart breaking.

 

My son has always loved the ocean. His eyes are the color of the sea, changing from blue to green with the swell of the tide.  And my love for him is an ocean, an overwhelming force which is sometimes calm and steady, and other times full of conflict.

 

A mother’s love is like the continuous miracle of the sea. It begins in the ocean of your womb – but there is something unsettling about the way your baby kicks. So fiercely you feel bruised on the inside.

There is something willful and stubborn about his refusal to come out. He arrives weeks late, and even then – after almost 40 hours of labor.

Your baby is overwhelming and mysterious and brutal, like the ocean. He screams uncontrollably for hours a day, every day. And you bring him to one specialist after another, to be told it’s “colic.” You are advised that only a “tincture of time” will help.

 

Your toddler doesn’t hit milestones, and the pediatrician advises you to seek help. And they unravel the mystery of why your little one tantrums constantly, tears at his clothes, screams because the sound of the blender alarms him so.

You are told he has “Sensory Processing Disorder” – and you begin your quest to understand the crossed wires of his central nervous system.

You spend your days helping him to make sense of, and feel safer in, his world.

Brushing his body every 2 hours with a soft brush.

Doing joint compression exercises on his arms and legs.

Assuaging his need to sink his teeth into everything by giving him chewy tubes, and crunchy foods.

Letting him roll on a huge ball, and crash into a mountain of supersized pillows, and jump endlessly on a small trampoline.

 

And at 3, he is now diagnosed with ADHD. And the doctors offer you their prescription pads.

But no real answers.

And you refuse. Because, how much of this is ADHD, and how much of this is him being a three-year old boy?

 

And so consumed are you with his sensory needs, his behavioral issues, so absolutely drained, that he is 4 years old by the time you even think about having another child. And your body betrays you, and says, “No.”

You live with that guilt forever.

 

 

A few years go by, and the ocean of his psyche ebbs and flows, in ways you can’t predict or explain.

Sometimes smooth and peaceful, but often tumultous, and never something you can contain or control.

Your child fidgets incessantly. Talks constantly, or simply makes loud, disturbing noises. He’s always seeking “extreme” sensations – climbing, jumping and crashing constantly.

Sucks on clothing, fingers, crayons, anything.

The sun “hurts his head.” If he gets any part of his clothing wet, even slightly, he cries until he can change them.

He seems to have no body awareness, no sense of spatial relations to other kids. Crashes into other children constantly.

And when playing, gets excited to the point of biting. Never out of aggression.

But biting makes him the pariah of playground. You mourn that this gorgeous human being is being sabotaged by some internal trigger switch.

 

 

You research and find the best pediatric neurological clinic on the East coast, and get on a year-long waiting list.

 

And at 5, after a week of evaluations, it is confirmed.

ADHD, Hyperactivity-Impulsive type. In addition to Sensory Processing Disorder.

And they offer up their prescription pads, and once again – you say, “No.”

So fearful are you of altering his brain chemistry.

 

Because he is, undeniably BRILLIANT. Creative. Funny. And you are afraid that medication will dull that brilliance. He is the ocean, untamed and magnificent, sometimes raging and destructive.

He is your fierce little warrior.

And you are determined to help him flourish, despite his lettered labels.

Another quest begins.

 

Martial arts. Supplements. A very structured schedule. Lots of sleep. Cognitive behavioral therapy. Classification at school with an IEP. Proper nutrition, including a hellishly difficult diet known as the “Feingold Diet,” which requires you to make everything he eats from scratch. It appears to help, so you follow it.

 

You buy $10 socks for your child. Because he needs special “sensitivity socks,” entirely seamless – and even then, an invisible piece of lint will send him into tears.

You spend each morning in an exhausting battle to dress him in the clothes he can tolerate – because he cannot wear jeans, or cargo pants, or shirts with buttons or zippers, or jackets with elastic around the sleeves. And no shoes ever feel right.

And he can still feel the ghost of the tag you cut off of his shirt, the way an amputee still feels the ghost of a severed limb.

By the time he is dressed and on his way to school, you feel totally defeated.

At 8 am in the morning.

 

You advocate for him tirelessly, through classification and declassification and IEPs and 504s. And marvel at his intellectual abilities, so far beyond those of his peers.

But emotionally and psychologically – he fights to keep his head above the rip tides.

 

The years pass, and some things improve. And others  – worsen. New challenges emerge.

 

And when your marriage crumbles, and you are left on your own to deal with this beautiful child, you realize,

YOU CANNOT.

You are so depleted just surviving, running your home and your business, you simply no longer have the energy to deal with his needs – which have grown so pronounced.

 

The hour of homework, which takes four. Sending him upstairs to shower, only to find him unshowered an hour later, lost in an imaginary world of half Harry Potter, half Percy Jackson.

The morning dressing battles. His lack of spatial awareness, the constant clumsiness that causes him to drop and break everything he holds, the constant touching and fidgeting and noises.

His lack of social cue awareness, his inflexibility, his fixations.

 

YOU GIVE UP.

You hear yourself tell your friend, “I can’t raise him. I just can’t.

Why can’t he just be normal?”

YES. YOU SAID IT.

Not caring if she or anyone else judges you.

For no one could possibly judge you as harshly as you judge yourself.

 

And now, his therapist tells you it’s time to consider putting him on medication. And your blood turns to ice at the thought of him losing the uniqueness that flows through his mind.

 

And when she says, “We must have him evaluated again. I’m fairly certain he has…”

You say it with her.

“ASPERGER’S.”

Because you knew.

 

And you’re drowning now, in an ocean of pain and despair.

Unable to face yet another quest to unlock the mystery of this latest diagnosis.

Wondering how you can afford thousands of dollars of tests your insurance doesn’t cover; how you both will survive the nightmare trial and error of endless drugs and endless side effects.

How can you possibly keep him afloat, when you are sinking fast to the bottom of the briny deep?

You look up furiously and demand that God explain why he did this, when all you’ve ever wanted for your child was for him to have a better childhood than yours.

 

And then, you spend the perfect Saturday together. And you are reminded of his brilliance. His dazzling humor. You laugh together, all day.

That evening, you both snuggle on the couch. While you write this, his story, he reads.

Every so often, and for no reason at all, he looks up over his enormous library hard copy of War And Peace, just to say,

“I love you, mom.”

 

You may be drowning, but he is not. With his beautiful spirit, endless compassion, soulful heart, keen wit – he is simply adrift.

And you will fight for him, as always. You will figure this out.

Yes. The turbulent waves of your uncertainty sometimes rock with indomitable fury, pushing away, only to crash and break, but he is the shore that grounds you. Your love for him is like the ocean; endless, chaotic, fickle, and profoundly deep.

And there is nothing more beautiful than the way the ocean always returns to embrace the shore.

 

Do you have a special needs child? Or know of one?
As a parent, do you sometimes feel like you just can’t go on?
Talk to me. I’m listening.

 

This version of Somewhere Over the Rainbow is sublime.
This is not the official video, but it’s our favorite. Filled with the images of beautiful children.

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In New York city in the 1990′s everyone was a lesbian.

The 1990′s was the birth of lesbian chic. Even if you weren’t lesbian, it was cool to look like one (bald Sinead O’Connor), dress like one (Darlene from Roseanne creating the  “Lesbian Lumberjack Look”) and have ambiguously lesbian “friendships” (the armor-wearing heroine of Xena: Warrior Princess and her “sidekick” Gabrielle).

The early 90s NYC was a powerful time and place to be gay. Lipstick lesbians were emerging as glamorous and sexy; breaking formerly inflexible definitions of lesbian identity.

I don’t know if that’s why I fell in love with Nicolette, my beautiful impossibly bitchy lesbian girlfriend.  As I young girl I remember being just a little too excited for Charlie’s Angels on Wednesday nights.

And never really following or caring about the plot.

While besotted with Nicolette I became a frequent patron of several lesbian bars in the village. Lesbian nightlife was thriving fiercely down in the Village, where I lived. We hung out at Crazy Nanny’s, Meow Mix, Clit Club.

 

And then there was Café Tabac.

Never before or since has there been such an elegant, renowned, celebrity studded lesbian hangout as Sunday nights at this “see and be seen” legendary salon. Café Tabac was always packed with semi-famous gay artists and musicians, as well as full throttle celebrities like Madonna. It was THAT kind of place.

And it was there that I met Sapphire.

Sapphire was a tiny smoldering inferno of lesbian sexuality. Not even quite 5 feet tall, she had waist length black hair, green eyes, and the kind of presence that makes everyone nervous. For no reason.

Or else maybe it was her huge rack.

Nicolette and I were winding down, but I still frequented all the lesby hangouts (because, why NOT?) One Sunday night at Café Tabac, I noticed Sapphire noticing me. Of course I knew who she was. Everyone knew her. She ran a downtown experimental lesbian theatre troupe that was fast becoming famous.

I went to the bar and ordered a drink, standing strategically next to her. She spoke.

“I know you. Have you ever auditioned for me?”

“No. “

She stared into my face, in a way that would make most normal people uncomfortable. Thank God I wasn’t normal.

“It’s your Divine Feminine Energy. We’re Sisters. We all know each other.”

At this point, she seemed like a crazy person, but one with magnificent breasts. When she fingered the pentacle around her neck, I knew EXACTLY what she was talking about.

Because I had an insatiable book habit, I had read “Drawing Down the Moon” and “Spiral Dance.” I said to her, “Happy Beltane!”

Game ON.

 

Sapphire was High Priestess of a Dianic Wiccan ‘Circle,’ or coven. Dianic Wicca is mostly, if not completely, made up of lesbians. They had 12 members, and Sapphire was looking for a 13th. Guess who that ended up being?

First, I had to be “initiated.”

Which meant I had to get naked (or “skyclad”) in front of all of them.

Shit just got real, right?

 

I was assigned several books to read. I had to choose a Craft name. That, I will not share with you. But Wiccans typically go by three names; the first being something appropriately witchy, the second something nature related but with a jacked up spelling, and then their own surname. So, you might get, “Bronwyn Forrest Goldberg.”

 

The initiation ritual took place in the woods. Where I was to get naked and into a bathtub.

Yes. They had a bathtub in the woods. One of the women owned a house in upstate New York. On her property, she had a “staging area” and the path leading to it had a motherfucking bathtub.

I had met the other women in the coven by now, but that did not make this any less bizarre.

I was told to dress in clothes that could be “cut away” easily, which I thought was metaphorical. I wore black tights and a black tank top.

Sapphire led me down the path, and one of the women, whose role that evening was that of ‘Challenger,’ approached me. She was carrying a sword and wearing a mask – a handpainted leather combination fairy/moth sorta thing.

I was wondering if I was having an acid flashback.

Next there was a whole lot of Monty Python-esque dialogue.

She asked, “Who comes to the gate?”

I had to say,

“It is I, (my Craft name), child of earth and starry heaven.”

Her: “You are about to enter a vortex of power, a place beyond imagining, where birth and death, dark and light, meet and make one. You are about to step between the worlds, outside the realm of your human life. Have you the courage?”

Why not? They were 12 extremely hot women.

 

Me: “I tread the path with perfect love and perfect trust.”

Her: “Prepare for death and rebirth.”

Woah, woah, wait a minute!

Then this bitch took her sword and cut my clothes off.  Not in a hot way. In a creepy, Rosemary’s Baby way.

 

Then, I had to get bathed in the outdoor tub. Afterwards, I dried off and knelt before Sapphire.

She asked, “Are you willing to swear the oath?”

“I am.”

She asked,  “Are you willing to suffer to learn?”

“Yes.”

She pricked her finger with a needle, squeezing out a few drops of blood.

“Repeat after me: ‘I, of my own free will most solemnly swear to protect, help and defend my sisters  of the Art and to keep the Coven’s Charge.

I will always keep secret all that must not be revealed.”

 

I guess I kinda blew that one with this blog post. Oopsie.

 

Sapphire:  “Arise and be anointed.”

She then made an X mark on my forehead. In BLOOD.

“May your mind be free. May your heart be free. May your body be free. I give you the Craft!”

The rest of the Coven members grabbed me,  lifted me, and carried me three times around the Circle, laughing and shrieking. Chanting my new name.

Freaky shit, right?

It was the 90′s. I was very young.

DON’T JUDGE.

 

We met every month, more frequently if there were holidays or specific urgent rituals that needed to be performed.

I would come home from work and play my answering machine.

“Hi, you’ve reached Samara. I’m not in, so please leave a message at the beep.”

BEEP!
And then Sapphire’s throaty voice:
“Take my hands and let us dance naked. Let’s unleash the stars from our chest and swim within the power of our souls.”

Since she was the High Priestess and I was a lowly Apprentice, I’d get the list:

“I need a double-action reversing candle and a statue of the Virgin Mary.”

“The stupid supermarket spice aisle doesn’t carry vervain! Can you go to Enchantments and get some?”

“I need something to clean a wine stain from a white robe.”

“Oh, and ask Byron at Enchantments how to get wax off the cat.”

 

Ugh. Jasper, her idiotic cat.

When the coven met in her apartment, it was non stop:

“Jasper, off the altar and away from the cauldron!”

“Jasper, stop attacking my feet while I am casting the circle!”

”Jasper, STOP DRINKING WEST!!!”

 

The coven was taking over my life, becoming my primary focus of attention. I  spent less and less time with my non Wiccan friends.

I now found myself constantly burning sage in my apartment. Spending all my money on Wiccan accoutrement.

I actually carried on conversations which included,

“Blessed be!”

“My third eye chakra is KILLING me.”

“Clearly she’s not a witch if she’s breaking the Reed.”

I even started a conversation with a woman one evening at Café Tabac with, “So. What’s your element?”

 

Sapphire, as High Priestess, became increasingly more controlling over my life. And finally, it just became Too Much.

Apparently, fluoride is bad for the brain-located pineal gland. Sapphire claimed this was harmful to our Third Eye Chakras. She demanded that we all purchase expense Reverse Osmosis Filtration systems, which she was conveniently selling to remove the fluoride from our drinking water.

I finally realized that she was, not to be punny, bat shit crazy.

And my Wiccan days were over. (Kind of. Don’t piss me off, unless you know how to banish a Magick spell…)

 

 

What do you think of Wicca?   Does this all just seem crazy to you?
Did you watch Charmed, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the movie Practical Magic, and most recently, American Horror Story: Coven?
Are you a witch?
Talk to me.  I’m listening.

 

For your Halloween listening pleasure…

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Okay, THAT’S just disgusting.

But I had to find the male version of the picture I posted for the female edition of “What’s Buggin You.”

Today, we have some of the funniest guys in Blog Land tell you about THEIR pet peeves. So get your Thursday off to a good start and head on over to the SisterWives blog to read about what gets the guys ticked off!

P.S. WTF is on his face?

What’s Bugging You??

October 28, 2014

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EVERYONE has them- those things that just bug the CRAP out of you. You know exactly what I’m talking about.

What is it for you?

Entitled suburban kids in baggy jeans who think they are gangstas?

Sick people who cough and spew phlegm at you?

The naming of celebrity couples, like ‘Kimye?’

 *loads gun*

 

Over at the Sisterwives blog, we wanted to show you our lighter side. So, we asked a lot of funny people what bugs THEM.

Today, the ladies have their say.

Thursday, the guys are on board.

So, come play with us over there!

And let us know – what bugs YOU?