Category: Technical

Upgrading the playspace

Reading Time: 5 minutes

I’ve been using a section of my basement for a play space for the past 20 years. Before that, we lived in another house and there too I utilized part of the basement area for BDSM play. There are other portions of this house that could be used for that purpose, but as it happens so infrequently (hopefully something that will be changing in the near future) dedicating a certain area and decorating, as well as outfitting it for that eventual/expected activity always seemed to be a waste of funds, time and effort.

A couple of months ago I had a new playmate over to the house for a session, and we used the basement. Seeing as it was November and getting colder outside, in the area it was about 62-63°F (16-17°C) which for clothed people was all well and good, but for someone with limited clothing, it wasn’t exactly ideal. Having considered that issue in years past, I had purchased a space heater that works off of 1 lb propane bottles and is rated for indoor use. Unfortunately, it hadn’t been used in probably 6 years or more, so when I went to light the pilot, nothing happened. I fiddled around with it for a few minutes, determining that the bottles of propane that I had were still viable, it was just there wasn’t anything for the pilot to light. So, for the time being, we made do best that we could, but the play session was somewhat abbreviated due to the chilliness of the basement. Moving the whole shebang upstairs wasn’t going to work as there wasn’t any space set aside for that purpose, so I made a note that I was going to have to do something before another session occurred. As it happened, that may not be for at least a few more weeks, due to the new playmate’s schedule, and mine not meeting up in an acceptable fashion. If anything, it gives me time to make things better for the next occurrence.

This morning, having the day off from work, and armed with information that I’d gleaned from YouTube about cleaning the space heater, I set to work with Q-tips, rubbing alcohol and a can of compressed air. After using a paper towel and water to clean the accumulated dust and cobwebs off the heater, I used the compressed air canister to blow air into the vents, and give it a bit of a going over trying to get it as clean as possible on the outside. Once that was accomplished, I set to work with the Q-tips and alcohol, using one to clean out the tube where the propane is supposed to come out and be lit by the ignitor. Again using the compressed air canister, I cleaned out the tube a bit more with a few well-spaced air blasts and re-attached the propane canister, checking to be sure the connection was ok before turning on the unit and pressing the ignitor. Voila! Success! The pilot lit on the first try. It did take me a few minutes to get the hang of when to switch the heater over to get the ceramic heating tile lit and beginning to warm. Once that had been accomplished, I was able to repeat the process a few times committing it to memory so I didn’t have to consult the instructions over and over. According to the instruction booklet, this heater should be able to adequately warm an area of approximately 200 sq ft (18.5 sq m) without too much trouble. Not being sure exactly how big that was, I eventually determined it was approximately the area of a one-car garage. So the heater should do the trick for the area I was going to be using. In theory.

Another issue I want to address is the floor. Seeing as it is a basement and has a rudimentary poured concrete floor, (probably created sometime in the 1950s or 60s) and the walls are made out of fieldstone with 19th-century mortar; it’s naturally rather chilly there most of the time. Too, it’s not necessarily the most accommodating of spaces when it comes to throwing whips and storing toys. More than once I’ve lamented over the fact that I store my spanking bench there, with its leather padding. I’ve been fortunate so far in that it hasn’t mildewed over the years but adding more toys of the same vein I can’t guarantee one of them might suffer that fate. Certainly one can get furniture re-padded and so on, but if you can keep it from happening in the first place, that’s actually a better idea. In my travels on Amazon, I happened to stumble upon a semi-solution for the floor issue. There’s interlocking padding one can purchase that isn’t too expensive and it can insulate the floor a bit, as well as make it hospitable for bare feet, or even stockinged feet. Certainly, I don’t wish to spend too much in that area if in time I move the play area upstairs, but for the time being, it’s not a bad idea to make it a bit more hospitable for those that are going to be gracing me with their presence.

Besides, don’t get me started on the iron maiden.

Used Cars

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Since 2000 my wife and I have been leasing vehicles.  Before that, we each had our own respective vehicle that we brought into the marriage.  She had a 1987 white Chrysler LeBaron convertible and I had a 1987 brown Ford Bronco II that I had purchased used.  I practically drove it into the ground, even though it had better than 87,000 miles on it when I bought it in 1990.  Somewhere around 1999 I sold it as a junker, someone had seen it parked by the side of the road and offered me (as I recall) about $1200 for the hulk.  Since it had been sitting for the better part of 4-5 months I figured ‘what the hell’  and accepted the offer.  The guy showed up the next day with a trailer, hauled it up, paid the money, I gave him the signed registration card and the deal was done.  At that point we went from 2 vehicles to 1.  And it’s been that way for the last 20 years.

Over the last year or so, I’ve been pondering getting a used car for travel to see my girl.  As it stands right now, in order to get down to where she lives, I have to either drive the family vehicle or rent one for the time needed to see her.  The last time I rented, it cost me close to $800 for the 4 days I needed the car.  The last time I saw her in 2018, I drove the Edge that we had.  Of course, if I have the vehicle, then the wife is left stranded without one, and in case of emergency, that’s not a good thing in a semi-rural area.  Sure there are taxis and other forms of transportation available in extreme circumstances (Uber and Lyft don’t exist in my area for the time being) but I’d feel better if she needed a vehicle, she’d have one at her disposal.

The other thing that has gotten me thinking about used cars is the fact that the vehicle my girl has right now is a hole in the road.  It seems every week there’s something else wrong with it that’s going to take $$ to fix, and she just doesn’t have the available, necessary funds to keep pouring into it.  She got the vehicle from her sister, who sold it to her on a payment plan, and now the vehicle is paid for.  Too, it has four almost new tires, the suspension in the front has almost been entirely replaced, as well as new shocks and other items that have been related to me over the many months.  I’m beginning to wonder if by the time I see her again it will be an updated version of the Johnny Cash song ‘One Piece At A Time‘.  But in this case, it will have cost way more “than a dime”.

This is going to be an ongoing thing, but right now, I’m looking at used cars.

Collar 2.0

Reading Time: 2 minutes

I remember talking to myself about this when the first one was lost so soon after it was presented.  I remember at the time promising myself the next one (though there should never have beennext one) was going to be more permanent, or at the very least harder to get off, so it wouldn’t be laid aside, and possibly be lost.  But after a year and a half, here we go again.  However, unlike the last one, the clasp is a bit more sturdy and less likely to come loose at a moment’s notice.  Still, the links are made out of aluminum, not steel, so it’s not impermeable either.  It’s going to have to be cared for, to be sure it’s around for the long haul.

Unfortunately, I won’t be able to present it to her personally, I’m forced into mailing it to her, which admittedly is a bit impersonal, and I’d rather not have to do it this way.  Our next meeting isn’t going to be until the spring however, so this is going to be the best that we can accomplish.

We’ll see how it goes.  If this one gets lost or broken, I’m going with Ring of Steel, or Eternity.

What a nice surprise!

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Came home from work today and was feeling a little blah. To perk me up a bit, I made some mac & cheese from a box, and while the macaroni was cooking, I came into the addition here and figured ‘what the heck’ and turned on my desktop. It’s been sitting for several weeks silent and unused since for some strange reason it wouldn’t boot way back when. In the interim, I’ve been using my old Thinkpad laptop, but have been missing the large 27″ monitor as well as my preferred Dell keyboard and the other peripherals that I’ve become accustomed to. After a little black screen, it booted. Holy crap, it booted!

Of course, I was fully expecting it to shut down after a few minutes, but even so, I grabbed a thumb drive intending to at least try to get a few files that I’ve been needing off the main drive before it powered off. At that point, I wasn’t even interested in getting into my email program to download three weeks of mail that has been sitting on various servers. First things first. Damage control. Triage. Jumping into the password program, I determined where the password file was located and went to the corresponding subdirectory. Of course, it wasn’t so simple, the thumb drive I chose was write-protected. Bugger! Thinking fast, I switched gears and uploaded the file to my Dropbox, so I could access it even if/when the computer were to fail. Once that was completed, I breathed a bit of relief.

On to other things, while my luck was holding out. My Jetpack had gone squirrely on this blog about a month ago, and I’ve been unable to access the server to remove the subdirectory in order to re-install it. Firing up my FTP program, I went to download the files in order to delete them later. Only, I ran into a snag. A couple of months ago, I added a level of security to the FTP connection and forgot the password. And naturally, stupid me, I didn’t add it into my password vault program to be reminded. I had to circumvent that oversight but was able to accomplish my goal with a minimum of angst or hair-pulling.

Finally, I started my email program and crossed my fingers. Several of the email accounts haven’t been cleared in about a month, so I was fully expecting there to be at least two to three thousand emails on at least one of them that needed to be moved off the server and deleted. With fingers crossed, I set Thunderbird to work and I can report that everything was successfully pulled from ALL of my accounts. During the largest pull, my backup program started. And was able to do a successful backup, even though the computer has not been used for over a month. I bought a 6 TB drive several months ago with the intention that it be my storage bay for computer backups, and it has been. Though I’ve been rather remiss as well as hesitant to junk the computer and get a new motherboard, chipset and all, due to the cost and pain in the arse that building a new computer entails. I figured at minimum a new system was going to cost me in the neighborhood of $600-700, and that’s without buying any storage. Just a case, memory, new chipset and a motherboard, as well as a new copy of Windows 10. If you have a new motherboard and chip, you have to get a new copy of the operating system. I’ve tried going the route of Linux before, but caveman that I am, I just prefer how Windows does things. And Apples are just too expensive. And next to impossible to repair.

Now that I have it running, I’m hesitant to shut it down. But I know I have to, if for not other reason than it has to update the software in several ways. Before I do though, there are some housekeeping things I need to accomplish in case it all goes down in flames. But at least for now, it works!

Another stint in FB Jail

Reading Time: < 1 minute

Honestly, the closest I can equate what I feel this to be is in kindergarten.  Posting something on what’s basically an adult forum, (since the group I’m in doesn’t allow anyone under 18) and getting dinged by an algorithm.  I’ll leave it to you to decide if what you’re seeing is offensive.  Because me, personally?  I don’t.  And neither does anyone in the group that I’m in because the post has been liked and shared over a hundred times in the last couple of hours.

Ecch.  So pissed right now.  Have a headache and I’m going to bed.

 

FB Jail

Reading Time: 2 minutes

After having trouble with the group on Facebook, I thought I would post some pictures to get the party going again.  Well, apparently that was a bad move.  At least with one of the pictures.  I wasn’t even considering implications, but I just landed in Facebook Jail.  Here’s Why:

FB-Jail I have to admit this is the first time I’ve ever been censored like this on Facebook. When I was posting this picture in concert with the other ones, it didn’t even occur to me that there was going to be a problem. Now that this happened it makes sense considering that A) It’s a public group, and B) Facebook has gotten a lot more restrictive over the years. Definitely not the Wild West it used to be.

I’ve made references about how bad its gotten over the months with making everyone adhere to specific requirements as well as making sure that any content is nearly G-rated before anyone else can see it.  Have to protect the kids, I suppose.  To the point that kids aren’t going to be able to fend for themselves when they grow up.  Between Tumblr and Instagram censoring and eliminating people’s accounts for what they term to be ‘questionable content’, and many people who have kink inclined interests being relegated away from ‘free’ sites, I just wonder at the end what the whole world is going to look like online and be like.  The Internet was supposed to be a place where anyone was welcome, and could share themselves.  Now I understand of course there are certain aspects of people’s lives that probably shouldn’t be shared, but sometimes self-policing is better than allowing the ‘thought police’ to have their way.

Anyway, I’m banned from posting or comment on FB for the next 24 hours.  Believe me, it’s not going be too much of a hardship.

Changing things around

Reading Time: 3 minutes

If you happen to be a follower of this blog, you’ll note already that I’ve changed a couple of things about how the blog works.  First and foremost, I relegated the ‘landing page’ to just another page in the header and made the blog posts the ‘star’ of the blog.  I tried it the other way for about 6 months, but it’s always sort of stuck in the back of my head as probably not the best way to present the blog.  So back to the default method of the posts up front.

I’m also mulling around changing the theme of the blog, in two distinct ways.  When I started the blog, it was mainly a ‘kink first’ blog, with a plan of having a ‘less kink’ blog elsewhere somewhere down the line.  At the time, I was expecting, nigh planning on being able to meet with my slave many times over the course of the year, and being able to chronicle about our adventures.  But, unfortunately, that didn’t happen.  So this blog became more of an amalgam of vanilla things that are happening in my life, with the occasional rant or mention of kink in passing.

Then, unexpectedly about a month ago my web host suddenly had a major issue with websites being available.  All too often over the last three weeks, it was unavailable because the web host wasn’t able to keep it online.  Getting server errors and a slow loading blog was very frustrating to my subscribers, and certainly it was no picnic for me either.  Watching my web traffic/bandwidth dwindle day after day was really beginning to piss me off, so much so that I took one of my domains and moved it to another server host.  Within the last couple of days the situation on the original web server has improved somewhat, and I’ve gotten assurances from them that they’ve not only identified the main problem, but they believe it’s been corrected.  So I’ve shelved the blog on the alternate server for the time being.  I’m still hedging my bets and leaving the other domain at it for now however.

I dusted off the blog I spoke about above and am posting to it as regularly as my brain can think of things to post to it.  Without much in the way of ‘kink’ to post here, I’m not completely certain I’m going to keep this blog active.  But I thought I’d make an update and let anyone that cared to know, what was going on.

We’ll see how it all goes.