Dear Madame Matisse,

My dear Mistress sometimes stops in the middle of a scene because she's not sure if she's caning me too hard. How can I encourage her to press on, regardless of my squeals?

BDSM players often use "yellow" and "red" to mean "slow down" or "stop", but you can also establish a "green" word to mean "keep it up, baby, I'm loving it." You can make it something all submissive-sounding, if you want to preserve the mood—"Ow! Thank you for the gift of your discipline, Mistress!" Or you can be like one of my partners, who enjoys encouraging me by saying things like, "Oh, what's the matter, Mistress Wimpy, am I wearing you out already? I've had mosquito bites that hurt worse than this—what are you using, a feather duster?" If your mistress is anything like me, she'll instantly lay into you like one of Singapore's finest and keep it going until her shoulder is sore.

Mistress of All Things Kinky,

I've heard there's a code kinky people use with things hanging off their belts? What's up with that? Am I sending some unintentional message with my nerd-gear hang-downs?

Vanilla engineers everywhere can rest easy. What you're referring to is the hanky code, which was invented by gay men, and borrowed by the pansexual SM community. It's designed to subtly signal sexual availability and specific interests to others in public places. It's all about facilitating anonymous hookups in bars and restrooms and parks and so on. Tucking a hanky into your left back pocket means you're the dominant party in your fetish of choice, while wearing your hanky on the right indicates that you're the bottom. (By "hanky" we mean colored bandanas, by the way.)

There are web pages that list the different hanky colors and their meanings. However, some of the lists take the concept to a point of absurdity, listing upwards of 40 different fetishes and their subtly different shade of hankies. Can someone please tell me how I would know the difference between a hanky that's tan (cigar fetishist) and one that's beige (rimming)?

But there are some more common and easily recognizable ones. Black is for heavy SM, gray is for bondage, red is for fisting, yellow for piss-play. A variation of the hanky code is clipping your keys to your belt either on the left or on the right.

Now that I think about it, I'm sure some clever person has probably thought up a post-millennium sex code that does involve geek high-tech gadgets like iPods and cell phones and BlackBerries. You know, cell phone on the left means you want phone sex, cell phone on the right means you give good phone, like that. The colors of the hanky code could be transferred to the colors of iPod cases. Strap it to either your left arm or your right, and you're in business. I should Google it and see.

But the whole culture of sending sexual signals in public ways is less active than it used to be, now that people use the internet for finding specific-agenda sex with strangers. So I'd say you need not fear being leapt upon by a kinkster who's mistaken your snot rag for something more perverse. No one I know would hang their hat on seeing a particular color of hanky peeking out of the pocket of someone's Levi's in an otherwise vanilla setting, although it might provoke a closer look, and perhaps some leading questions.

Dear Mistress Matisse,

What in the world is "adult-baby play"?

Wearing diapers, mainly. June Allyson had no idea how kinky she was being with those Depends commercials she did in the '90s. Plus baby powder, pacifiers, bottles, and lots of cooing baby talk. Perhaps the doting mammas of adult-baby fanciers play them classical music and foreign-language tapes during the scenes, I don't know. No real children are involved, it's all pretend. So it's a gentle, harmless fetish, if one that's always struck me as rather boring. I've been approached to play by fans of infantilism, but when I mention giving the scene an edge by doing a SIDS role-play, they always decline. Pity.

Kink Calendar



Erotic dance and spoken-word entertainment. Little Red Studio, 328-4758, 6:30 pm, ticket prices vary, RSVP required.


Kinky Santas, scantily clad elves, and naughty photographers ready to snap nice or naughty pics of you on Santa's lap. Also on Sat Dec 10. The Cuff, 1533 13th Ave, 9 pm–1 am, $5 per photo, pictures delivered at the event, 21+.

SUNDAY 12/11


Sensual touch for couples and singles, facilitated by David Longmire. No experience required. Wet Spot, 270-9746 or, 5–9 pm (doors close at 6 pm), $10, members only.

MONDAY 12/12


Nudist night at Banya 5, a steam bath and spa. 217 Ninth Ave N, 5 pm–11 pm, open to members of nudist/naturist organizations only,


Monthly fetish-fashion photography event. Wanna shoot? Contact Wanna model? Dress up. Fenix Underground, 109 S Washington St, 405-4314, 9 pm, $5 in fetishwear/$15 in civvies.



If there's anything kinkier than placing yourself on a boat loaded with smooth-jazz musicians and aficionados, I'll saw off my face and feed it to a dog. Sponsored by 98.9 FM. Fisherman's Terminal, 3919 18th Ave W, 7 pm–9:45 pm. $31, 21+, for tickets see