Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Not All Fun and Games

Don't get me wrong. I love having my balloon fetish. It's given me untold pleasure throughout my life. Even the emotional attachment to balloons that I feel is mostly positive; they can give me joy just by being in my line of sight, as they are now while I am writing this, hanging from the ceiling above me.

But there are downsides. I won't talk about the sexual downsides; I have before, to some degree, and they really aren't a problem for me now. Sometimes, though, the emotional baggage gets in the way.

I was in a hotel lobby recently, and in one of the function rooms off the lobby there was a baby shower going on. I wouldn't have even been aware that there were any balloons at the shower, were it not for a little girl running around near the doorway with a pink helium balloon tied to her hand. At that point, my only thought was that I'd be just as happy if the little girl stayed in the function room and out of the lobby.

Fortunately for me, she did. But I was still in the lobby when the guests from the shower were coming out. None of them was holding any balloons. I knew what was coming, and I was dreading it. And it's hard to explain why.

What was coming, of course, was the popping of all the balloons. Not for fun, not as a game, but just to get rid of them. This is something that bothers me emotionally. I want to rush in wherever it's happening and call out, "If you're going to pop those anyway, can I have them?" Of course, it's not usually appropriate to do that (though I did manage to a few times when I was young and single).

And so I had to bear the sound of balloons being popped. It didn't scare me because I wasn't close enough to it, but each pop pained me more than a little. Each explosion gave me the urge to go make it stop, to rescue the balloons from such casual destruction.

Why it affects me this way is hard to say, though it's something that's happened to me since I was a young boy. But then, when I was a young boy, any popping of balloons was painful, horrifying in fact. There was nothing, absolutely nothing, good about popping balloons.

But I've changed. I pop balloons myself for sexual pleasure. Why does the sound and sight of someone jabbing balloons with pins or scissors merely to get them out of the way bother me so much? I don't know for certain; it's just a gut feeling, something I don't think about when it happens.

But I do know that, for me, popping balloons is a meaningful experience. I don't pop balloon casually. I don't like to pop balloons without sexually playing with them, or at least fantasizing about such play when I pop them. And I think that what bothers me is that when balloons are being "cleaned up," there's no emotion at all attached. No one is having fun, nor is the person wielding the sharp instrument, as far as I can tell, sad about what they are doing.

And certainly no one is getting sexually excited by it. At least, not in most cases; I know that some of my fellow fetishists actually do get off on just this kind of popping, and that's great for them. For me, though, it's very upsetting.

I am fortunate, as I have mentioned, to have a very understanding wife. After the incident at the hotel, I asked her if I could blow up a balloon in bed that night. Not for any sexual purposes (though I would have been fine with that), but just to cuddle. I needed to have a balloon on my own terms, under my own control, to fight back the demons of uncaring balloon-poppers that have haunted me since my youth. I needed it just to sleep that night. And it worked.

The irony is, of course, that to some non-poppers, I have become the demon. Not an uncaring popper, but a balloon destroyer nevertheless. I'm unlikely to change in that regard; popping balloon holds too much sexual power for me now, and has since I was a teen.

But I get it. I get it much more than I think the non-poppers realize. I may destroy the objects that they love, but I do feel their pain. And truth be told, when I pop balloons for sexual pleasure, it is not without some trepidation. I just comfort myself knowing that the balloon, which wouldn't have lasted forever anyway, was much appreciated before and in the act of its destruction.

Nothing is simple. Certainly not a balloon fetish.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Shaping Up

It's been a long time coming, I know. I released my last book in October of 2015. I started writing a new collection of stories almost immediately. But 2016 brought a lot of family health issues, and (on the happier side) a lot of other, non-balloon-related writing assignments, and so the stories came in bits and pieces.

But recently I've been able to pick up the pace. I could say that I have enough material for another collection. But I'm not ready to publish yet. Why?

Because, as I said when I started the new stories, I'm actually assembling two different books. And now that I've been doing it, off and on, for more than a year, I can tell you that they are, indeed, two very different books.

One collection, I had originally said, was much like the first. But I no longer think that's true. Yes, I have realistic people whose characters I'm exploring. Yes, the situations are plausible. But I haven't limited myself to chasing after erotic satisfaction in these stories. I find myself exploring more about the emotions and tribulations involved with having an unusual fetish, and some of the emotional issues that aren't even really fetish-related; some of the stories don't even have happy endings.

Some readers might not feel comfortable with these stories. Some may be looking for a quick thrill, stroke material, to be quite honest.

And that's where the other book comes in. It's pure "I wish this had happened to me in real life" fiction, without much character development, without necessarily spending a lot of effort at being realistic, without a lot of set-up or denouement. This is a book for someone who just wants to get his rocks off.

Yes, his, because these fantasies are most likely to appeal to a male balloon fetishist, since that's what I am, and that's what I most like to write. And I have to warn you that there are no non-popping stories in the book. My apologies to the non-poppers. I know how you feel, honestly, but my mind just didn't go there this time.

When I had collected enough stories for each of the two collections, I will publish them, but after that I think I may be taking a break from the anthologies for awhile. For other non-balloon-related projects, of course. But, just maybe, to also concentrate some attention on the sequel to Blowing It!

No promises on that one, but some ideas have finally been coming to me, after a recent re-reading of the original, and so I'm certainly considering it. Meanwhile, I hope you enjoy my new stories when they come up, sometime this year, likely before summer is done.