1. Black leather pants are good. Black leather vests are good. And black leather shirts are even good. But do not wear them all at the same time.
2. If you're invited to a private party, don't out your host to his neighbors by walking up the sidewalk wearing nothing but a thong, a leash, and a leather hood. If you ever want to be invited back, cover your body appropriately and behave inconspicuously when you're entering and leaving the house.
3. BDSM can sometimes be therapeutic, but BDSM scenes and BDSM relationships are no substitute for therapy. PTSD? ADD? Bipolar? Get thee to a mental-health professional, not a dungeon.
4. Does your butch, silver-haired leather daddy have his ass in the air for you? Does that giggly little femme girl have her boot on your throat? Perhaps you shouldn't make assumptions about someone's kink proclivities based on gender, age, style of dress, or social affect.
5. On the subject of parties: Just because you've seen everyone else there grope, fondle, or spank a certain person doesn't automatically mean that you can too. Hands to yourself, unless you ask for and are granted permission.
6. Wearing a flogger on your belt that's so long it drags on the floor indicates a lack of understanding of basic hygiene.
7. Enigma's MCMXC A.D. album? It's perfectly dandy for BDSM background music—in 1993. But it's now 2006, and if you still have this CD in your disc changer, you must take it out. And then smash it with a hammer until you break it.
8. If you attend a BDSM technique class and you really feel that you know more about the topic than the presenter, then please, go forth and produce your own event. But don't attempt to hijack the one you're sitting in. No one there paid to hear you talk.
9. Corsets on voluptuous women are great. But if your breasts rise up high enough to meet your chin, you should consider loosening the laces a bit.
10. Sorry, "dominant" does not equal "license to be an asshole." All ordinary social conventions about good manners still apply to you.
11. Don't announce, loudly and often, that you'd never, ever do kinky activity X because it's so icky. The Higher Powers of BDSM have a sense of humor, and if they hear you, they will visit you with persistent erotic visions of that precise activity until you give in to it. Your merciless friends will take great pleasure in making you eat your words when you admit your new favorite kink. A gentle, "I don't think that's for me" is sufficient for most purposes.
12. Regardless of what they say, you don't have to call anyone with whom you're not in a D/s relationship Mistress This or Master That.
13. However, if the only name someone gives you is something like, "Zeus Lightning-Whip," then I hereby grant you permission to refer to them as "that pretentious twit with the mullet and the plastic riding crop."
14. Wearing sunglasses to an indoor, nighttime fetish event really doesn't make you look like Bono. It just makes you look like someone stole your white cane.
15. In conversation, be extremely careful applying a label to someone else based only on what you've seen of his/her activities. Getting flogged doesn't make someone a slave, getting one's feet kissed doesn't make someone a Mistress, and people can get offended by having assumptions made about them. If you feel you must know how they identify, ask.
16. Yes, cracking your single-tail whip is fun and makes you feel like Zorro. But doing it over and over again—especially in an enclosed, crowded space—makes it seem a bit like you're overcompensating for something.
17. The phrase "real and true" in personal ads—as in "a real and true master" or "a real and true slave"—is translatable as "I'm desperately seeking unearned credibility."
18. Final party etiquette tip: If your submissive takes a light smack on the butt as a cue to begin Primal Scream therapy, you should invest in gags. Lots of them. n
S.U.S.H.I.: SEXY URBAN SENSUAL HOT IMAGERY
Sexy visual art, belly dancers, burlesque cabaret, and erotic rope-bondage performance. Mnemonic Gallery, 619 Western Ave, fourth floor, 390-0430, http://sushiseattle.net, 6–10 pm.
JACK OFF PARTY
Rain City Jacks is a private, men's-only JO club. No drugs no alcohol, no attitude. Membership required. See www.raincityjacks.org, 6:30–9:30 pm, $5–$15.
Party at the friendly Eastside swing club. Single men must RSVP for the waiting list, couples and single women can just show up. Redmond Ranch, 425-868-8169, www.redmond-ranch.com, doors at 7 pm, new people must arrive by 8 pm, $45 for couples/$25 for single women.
WOMEN-ONLY NIGHT AT THE WET SPOT
Socialize, flirt, and do BDSM with the girls. All orientations welcome. Wet Spot, 1630 15th Ave W, building E, 270-9746, firstname.lastname@example.org, 9 pm–3 am, $15, members only, female ID required.
ROPE BONDAGE: BEYOND THE CUFF
Punzel teaches beautiful, understandable techniques for restraint. Bring partners and rope if you have them, singles also welcome, basic rope experience recommended. School of One, 523-5544 or www.schoolofone.com, 8–10 pm, $20 donation requested.
CLEAN SLATE IMPROV
Looking for kink with no limits? Head directly to the Green Lake Church of Seventh-Day Adventists, where tonight Clean Slate Improv dishes out a heaping helping of life-affirming, family-friendly improvisational comedy. Green Lake Church of Seventh-Day Adventists, 6350 E Green Lake Way N, 522-1330, 9 pm, $3 donation.
ACADEMY OF BURLESQUE: GRADUATION RECITAL
Miss Indigo Blue hosts as the latest crop of girly graduates shimmy, shake, and twirl. The Rendezvous, 2322 Second Ave, shows at 7 and 8:30 pm, $10, 21+.