Over the summer of 2010, Kendra (aka The Beautiful Kind), asked me for a brief email interview to make a profile for her column “You Are The Beautiful Kind.” Recently, however, it had vanished from her website and over email she told me she decided to take down the entry with the answers she solicited from me after I noted her strong and growing associations with EdenFantasys, the unethical sex toy company, would give me pause in associating my work with hers.
In light of this content being taking down, I’m publishing a copy of the profile I composed for her self-published column, below.
You Are The Beautiful Kind: maymay
I have others, too. Just google me for more details.
I self-identify as “bisexual” when asked by most people. Among closer friends, I choose to self-identity as a “kinky queer.” I have a distaste for labels but appreciate the power inherent in language. It takes more compassion than most people I’ve met of either “sex-positive” or “sex-negative” persuasions to understand the incredible value that exists in diversity and difference. Like “sex,” both “kink” and “queer” are hotly nebulous terms that no one seems able to pin down. I feel that the freedom such vagueness provides is necessary for making self-empowered choices about one’s sexuality and, by association, one’s sexual orientation.
I enjoy relating to anyone who shows themselves willing to relate to me as a whole person first, and a sexually submissive man second.
Favorite physical feature on yourself:
I like to think I have the eyes of a beholder, and that they are beautiful. In fact, I’m pretty sure that if you beheld your own eyes in this light, you’d think they were your most beautiful feature, too. :)
I have a barbell piercing through each nipple. Getting them didn’t hurt as much as I thought they would.
As for tattoos, I tend not to like the thought of them on myself or others. I typically find unadorned skin one of the most beautiful things about the human body, although there have been a few people with tattoos who I’ve felt were gorgeous.
Are you a tits, ass, pussy, etc. man?
I find curvy female bodies particularly attractive; legs and asses are often the curviest part of female-assigned people. I also find the hips of male-assigned people sexy. Perhaps I just like being near hips, legs, and asses. :)
Are you cut or uncut?
I’m circumcised. No one bothered to ask me if I’d mind being cut before they cut me, and I find such lack of consideration regrettable. However, what’s done is done. I am always willing to forgive, but I strive to never–ever–forget.
Charity you support:
There are plenty, but here are some I think are especially worth promoting:
What game did you like playing as a kid?
One of my favorite games was The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. It’s a classic Super Nintendo game about a young boy in a mystical land called Hyrule who possesses certain mental and physical abilities that he ultimately uses to save a kingdom from being overthrown by ideological extremists. Despite the heteronormative overtones, I found the mix of puzzle-solving and action/adventure a lot of fun. Also, Link is a hottie.
I also really enjoyed the various Sim games; SimCity, SimEarth, SimTower, and SimLife especially.
When was the last time you cried?
About a week and a half ago, I had a conversation with one of my heroes. Ze told me that while the work I was doing was “good for the world,” due to political pressure that had recently been focused on me, my principled stance could be “bad for me.” I cried because it was the first time someone I have incredible respect for told me that I wouldn’t live long enough to see my dream of a world without discrimination realized. I knew this already, of course, but hir words struck me in a time of particular vulnerability, and I simply broke down for a while.
We all need to cry sometimes. We need to cry and feel deflated once in a while so we remain grounded in reality. I’ve been manic and I have been depressed in my life, and I can say that my experience of depression is more firmly grounding than any mania, no matter how pleasurable. This is not to say that depression is “good,” merely that, with practice, the sadness and pain it elicits can be a rejuvenating force of life. Depression is like an emotional wildfire; it hurts and can be ruthlessly destructive, but it also has the potential to seed one’s soul with life-affirming soil and minerals.
I try hard not remain mired in sadness but when sadness is unavoidable I’ve found that it can be harnessed as fuel for my efforts to make Earth a better, more loving place for all its inhabitants.
What do you want to learn/add to what you already know?
I want to learn patience and calm. I’ve been described as “spirited,” “intense,” and “fiery,” as though I’m composed of elementary opposites (perhaps fire and water). I struggle with nothingness; doing “nothing” feels an imposition.
Special skill/talent, what are you really good at (non-sexual):
I’m an “information worker” in the classic sense, and I’ve been told I’m an exceptionally talented one. As an open source programmer (focusing on semantic web development) by profession, I deal with raw data of various kinds on a daily basis. Many of my beliefs are influenced by the ideals of the open source software movement, with transparency, accessibility, and accountability chief among them.
I live in the realm of ideas, concepts, and vision, but I also acknowledge that without means to translate these things to our shared reality, living there is useless. That’s why I write, whether in English or computer languages, and why I place so much emphasis on the importance of language. I’m also bilingual, speaking decent (but not quite fluent) Hebrew.
Also, I can solve a Rubik’s Cube in about a minute, juggle various things, and I crack whips for sport (and for play).
Special skill/talent, what are you really good at (sexual):
I think everyone is best at what they enjoy most. That’s why successfully communicating pleasure and enjoyment is part of what makes great sex great. One of the nicest compliments I received was from a partner who told me, “You taught me so much about my body.” But that compliment is misleading. I wasn’t the teacher, she just found herself more able to learn about her body when the sex she started having became pleasure-focused as opposed to goal-focused.
How old were you when you lost your virginity?
That depends on the “virginity” you’re asking about. If, as I presume you mean, you’re asking when the first time I had penis-in-vagina sexual intercourse with someone, I was 16. For the record, she spent a significant chunk of our relationship convincing me I was ready for sex before I felt comfortable doing it. After much discussion, she said, “A candle that burns brighter might not last as long, but I think the light is worth it.” The metaphor to our relationship seemed apt.
Sex, just like anything else in life, is only a “special” thing if you imbue it with specialness. Sex, like a bright candle, has no innate morality.
What are your masturbation habits? How often? Where? Props?
Masturbation is like an adventure game one can play with one’s own body and mind. :) If I spent as much time having sex or masturbating as my critics would have people believe, I wouldn’t actually have time to write and speak about the things they criticize. Make of that what you will.
What do you fantasize about? What’s your fetish? What turns you on?
I find dichotomies of power really fucking sexy. I have always loved, and still love, playing–but not being–powerless. (Photo credit: Male Submission Art)
The single biggest turn on anyone can tempt me with is intellectual collaboration. If I find value in your work, you suddenly become very attractive to me. The minds of motivated people who innovate in their fields are brilliantly sexy. I know this sounds corny, but it’s true. I’m an intellisexual, through-and-through.
What was one of the hottest moments of your life?
:) Those are memories best shared in person.
What would you do at an orgy?
Good question. I guess I’ll find out when I participate in an orgy for the first time.
You have one night to completely pleasure your lover. What do you do?
Pleasuring someone is an act deserving of thoughtful consideration and care. Although this is very hard for me to do, I think each and every time it is attempted, it must be approached with the childlike wonder that inexperience and uncertainty bring. I have never been able to pleasure a lover the same way twice, and I’ve found that I do better in bed when I stop trying to replicate past successes and simply relish the mutual enjoyment of the moment.
I find it shameful that we are so often indoctrinated with the fallacy that pleasure is some homogenizing force in society, that everyone does or should enjoy the same things in the same ways. The reality is that what one person may find pleasurable, another person may not. Treating different people identically and blinding oneself to the individual differences like body weight or genital sensitivity, or to group differences like race and socioeconomic class, is not a vision of heavenly equality but hellish discrimination.
Sex and pleasure is as diverse as food and nutrition. There is no single right way to enjoy food. Similarly, there is no single right way to enjoy sex.
As may have been clear from some of my answers, I bristled at the hetero-centrism in Kendra’s questions. For instance, questions like “Are you a tits, ass, pussy, etc. man?” presume a lack of male-male encounters. I found that (a little) off-putting.
What I didn’t know until after I submitted this profile was that the questions for female-assigned and male-assigned people are different. There are, in fact, two sets of questions in the YATBK column questionnaire (the counterpart to the “Are you a tits, ass, pussy, etc. man?” question seems to be “Beauty tip:”, reifying how the rules of flirting are sexist and wrong), and which set of questions you are prompted with depends on Kendra’s read of your gender. That’s more off-putting, but hey, it’s her website, and I appreciated the inclusion of a number of genderqueer profiles there.