The Power of Suggestion, Your Fandom, and Taste:
How We’re Prone to Doing it Wrong
There’s a couple of bands I really like that are/were new to me. They are, The Sword, and Witchcraft. Both bands have been around for over a decade, and what I mean by new-to-me is that I haven’t been listening to them for half my life or longer.
I like these bands because they make good, imaginative, acoustically pleasing butt-rock.
Butt-Rock for the uninformed (the urban dictionary definition is way fucking wrong) is essentially just metal, just regular old everyday Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, metal, but was called Butt-Rock as a derisive term for its fans who, from the late 70s on to this very day still look about the same style-wise.
They weren’t punk in the early 80s, they weren’t hair-metal-glamesqu in the late 80s, or ‘grunge’ in the early 90s though just about everyone in a ‘grunge’ band was a butt-rocker themselves, and the answer to why they weren’t any of those things is two fold:
One: That wasn’t the music they listened to primarily.
Two: They weren’t, as a result of not listening to it , a part of or chasing that fad, and/or not being cool enough for those scenes.
All of this will show up later in this article, I promise! And who knows, maybe you’ve already figured out where I’m going with all this.
Witchcraft’s last album Nucleus was basically un-listenable for me. It was too weird, too sonically exploratory, and too… I wanna say Swedish… for my tastes.
Of course, I found this out after I bought it, and not too long after spending a month or two listening to their first 3 albums while reading Joe Abercrombie’s Half a World trilogy.
(Not as enjoyable for me as the six books from his First Law world, but perhaps better written and easier to consume for other people.)
Meanwhile, The Sword have also gone in different directions, at least as far as their creative intentions goes.
While their last album High Country isn’t my favorite I can still listen to it, and I can understand who its made for.
That being other music nerds who are interested in music nerd stuff.
Music nerds, in this case, being the kind of people that are mad when you say the band Rush is shitty (because they are) because “you don’t understand their technical mastery.”
So where does that leave me, the fan who is seemingly left behind by these bands?
The answer doesn’t matter, because it’s a false question.
I still have hours of music from both bands that I enjoy with almost the same hormonal passion of a middle-schooler discovering “their” music for the first time, and most importantly:
Their job as artists isn’t to take me along with them, their job is to make their art. It isn’t to serve my emotional needs by constantly creating a stream of material, it isn’t to be beholden to one type of fan, it’s just to make and to create.
Of course, the other part of this is getting to say, “man they suck now,” while eating your AM/PM hotdog in a parking lot while drinking a beer in a paper bag and you know, really making something with you life…
No, that’s not it.
What I meant was, sometimes the other side of this is that artists can lose track of what makes them good in the first , or just plain get their heads up their own asses about their work, and generally that does lead to them starting to suck.
But in our world, the world of Erotic Hypnosis that doesn’t happen too often. Instead, you get content creators making different styles of material to better capitalize on the market, and also to explore their own interests.
One of the most interesting and important things to think about and understand when it comes to your favorite Domme making material is how much content they generate, and why.
This is, as I’ve said in probably every business-oriented article I’ve posted, a service industry.
That said, you’re probably thinking that all my talk about what is and isn’t an artist’s obligation doesn’t mesh with the old retail/sales adage that “The customer is always right.”
One, the customer isn’t. They’re wrong all the time, if you’ve worked retail you know what I mean.
Two, you are buying the art they are selling. They create a product line, you decide to buy it because you think it may fill your needs, and they sell it to you.
In this, the onus is on you to determine if this is actually what you want (it’s easier now than it used to be as people are better about being forthcoming with what’s in their content), and regardless of how much of a super-fan you are, it is always on you.
You see, regardless of that intimate connection you may feel to your favorite Domme and her work, you are not the only one who feels this way, and there are only so many of ‘you’ so many of ‘me’, etc.
To make a living in this world you have to work your ass off, and that’s part of the why of generating so much content. The other reason why so much content gets generated, and I don’t mean across the fetish I mean why so many people generate so much material, is because fetishes are progressive and compulsive.
(I think I have enough catchphrases now that you can do a my-blog-drinking-game.)
How often do you listen to the old files you have compared to how much you look forward to the next/newest one?
That’s what I mean by progressive and compulsive, and that’s what fuels our market. We need more, we want more, and we’ll pay for more, so they make more.
But, it’s slightly more complicated than that isn’t it?
Part of our world is overtly predicated on that compulsive notion mentioned above. It comes from the very idea of power exchange, that we’re taking part being controlled and being dominated, forced/coerced into submissive activities and behaviors, and that includes compulsive and mandatory fandom.
So, we’re living in a world of mixed messages aren’t we?
On one hand we’re supposed to be discerning and responsible shoppers, buying this stuff like we’d buy anything else.
On the other hand, well, our tastes and desires are subordinate to the control and influence we seek from our Dommes, and in that, combined with the power of suggestion which we so regularly embrace, there’s a discordant sensibility to it all isn’t there?
When we buy in (actually and metaphorically/emotionally) to a Domme’s control over us, we feel like we’re creating a relationship and a social contract, and when what we think we’re experiencing isn’t being held up on their end, it can feel like a kind of betrayal.
Of course, this is all built on a false and limited narrative that demands the other party, the functional stranger creating the content we consume actually being in our relationship with them, and not simply the one-sided one we have with their materials.
But, BUT… isn’t that what we’re being sold in the first place, the fantasy I just described?
Well, yes and no.
We’re buying discrete quantities of product per transaction, and we’re engaging in a complex series of social rituals and protocols in and around the driving connective points between them, and themes of those products.
A Domme’s time, her interest, and her insight/service are not beholden or obliged to us by means of buying product, and that’s why from a practical perspective it’s important to think of your purchases as being what they are.
Good business practices and a desire for success will inform content providers what to create, and part of that good business is seeing what else and where else there are business opportunities.
But, good business isn’t the sum total motivator for creation, so, while our money can have value and influence on the creative process, it does not require our favorite Dommes make content only for us, nor does it mean that all Dommes will make all content.
Personal tastes, interests, and motivations are what fuel art and creation more than profit and product (generally speaking…er…ideally speaking), and while we are also involved in a culture with its own inherent practices and values, that’s why it’s so important to not lose track of the realities of this being a service industry.
(The good news is, the culture and the economy of our corner of the fetish world does enable you to get precisely what you want, that’s what customs are.)
So, how does this help us reconcile the message, and the reality, and why do so many of us fall into the same patterns of behavior and expectation?
I’d like to think I answered the latter in the previous long-winded paragraphs, but basically it’s the actual system of our fetish that creates these patterns, so the only way to not fall into them is to be aware of the realities.
One might say, “To temper your fantasies with reality.”
But, is that what people are selling? Is that what people are buying? What is the real and actual reality of our situation here?
The answer is in how we reconcile our tastes, and how we understand suggestion.
About a month ago The Sword was in town.
I saw them the last two times they were here, and the thing was, they were okay live, and I kind of wanted to go see them again.
Just kind of though, because they weren’t really a “can’t miss” live act.
Why did I want to go then?
Because okay is fine and good of you have a good time, and because rock bands can only make money by touring constantly now and selling t-shirts, so I wanted to support one of my favorite bands.
Does that sound familiar?
We, in our fetish are obliged by the passions and influences of our Dommes to buy in wholly, as that is the fetish, that is power exchange fueled by suggestion, so the result is a conflict between submissive suggestion, and the grounds of taste, all under the broader conceptual umbrella of what it means to be a fan in general.
So, aside from the practicality we all essentially agree to leave behind by indulging in our fantasies, we need to understand the mechanism of our confusion, and the collision of suggestions we do want taking forms we don’t want.
Essentially, we all want to be good fans, and buy the t-shirt to support our favorite artists, but we want to do that by getting something we actually like.
We’re like this because inherently we understand that we’re in a service industry, we just don’t reconcile what are money is and isn’t buying.
It’s why paying tributes and findom are sort of alien to a lot of us.
Why just give money for nothing?
And if you’re buying something you don’t really like or want, isn’t that what you’re doing?
(But, you kind of want to do that, because that kind of encapsulates your desire to be controlled, but you as a customer also know what you enjoy and you don’t really enjoy that the same way you would buying a fantasy, in part because what you really want is a fantasy)
So, here’s the answer to you fan whose favorite Domme is also making gay butt stuff with clowns files, or stuff that isn’t your thing:
Your compulsions and your desire for more are greedy and all-consuming instincts that suggestion enhances. These feelings are purely internal, purely localized to you, and they are your relationship with the material, and not the creator.
Let your mind accept and process her ability to entice you and inspire you to crave, just remember that your cravings and desires are the ultimate end of what you are buying.
The suggestions to submit, to obey, to serve, they entice you into more, and if you let your mind rationalize these desires with conditions, you can teach yourself how not to feel betrayed by your Domme not making content that is just for you.
It’s important, it’s really important to understand that while there is a certain amount of obviousness to all of it, the complications that create this sort of behavioral selfishness come from the intimacy of the material itself and the way if tinkers with your thoughts and feelings.
You know, just like music does.
It’s a subtle emotional undercurrent that can inspire people, due to emotional and erotic confusion, to be more entitled and more generally shitty than they would be otherwise too.
And on that topic, you might also just suck a little, and be a complaining spoiled dick. If that’s all there is to it for you, don’t be that guy, be better than that.
Feel free to Contact Me here and…
If this was food for thought and you think it may have helped you at all, why not contribute a dollar to my coffee and comics fund… the things that keep me sane as I work.