Sunday, February 2, 2020

Kink Mentoring Archives

Here are links to 700+ articles, instructional videos and audio recordings, concerning kink/leather/fetish history, advice, hard and soft skills, and so forth.  Many articles are by me, but I have also included juicy and valuable wisdom from others, who are clearly identified.

The goal of these links is to support others in becoming wiser, more skilled, and more accepting of themselves and others.  Ideally, I’d love to save folks several decades of guessing, and learning the hard way.


Papa Tony

Newest Postings Can Be Found Here.

The Kink Mentoring Archives, Explained


Submissives, Slaves & Littles - Looking for mentoring? Here are massive amounts of relatable advice. Scroll through the whole thing.

Doms, Daddies & Masters - Many, MANY mentoring, opinion and advice articles, meant to help dominants to reach their next level, and beyond. See also:  Fake, Ignorant or Abusive Dominants, and Superb, Thoughtful and Valuable Dominants.

Safewords, Defined - Both dominants and submissives deserve to feel safe, comfortable and get care and reassurance when they need it.

Playing with Disabilities - Hell on Wheels: Disabled Dominants; Kneeling In Spirit: Disabled Submissives; Power Exchange Books: Playing with Disabilities; Mastering the Mind, Doms with Disabilities

Consent - Consent is one of the biggest themes of BDSM—if you don’t know that, you really need to read up before you pick up a paddle. BDSM is built on a system of “safe, sane, and consensual.“

Dating and Relationships - Personal stories and advice, from those who have lived and learned.

Sub Drop, Dom Drop and Aftercare - Let’s understand the psychology and physiology of how Doms and subs may similarly experience a “drop” after a session!

Social Skills, Etiquette and Fitting In - How to succeed in the larger kinky community, and as a self-loving kinky person. You are NOT going to find this kind of information anywhere else.

Books for Kinky Folks - Recommended reading material, to help in gaining wisdom and personal growth.

Checklists, Communication and Negotiation - BDSM Play Partner Check List • Can I Get That In Writing: Basics of Negotiations • If I Ever See Another Checklist I Will Scream: An Extremely Thorough Play Checklist • What Are Negotiations Good For? 

Advice & Soft Skills - Learn solid interpersonal skills, and to overcome obstacles in healthy ways

Opinions - Sharing some ideas that might work well for others

How-To: Hard Skills - Covering technical skills that will last you a lifetime

Valuable Links & Lists - Providing access to many more resources

Mental Health, for Kinky Folks - MANY resources and useful life-experiences.

Reviews and Toys - How to save money, time and wasted energy when shopping for kinky gear

My Personal Stuff

New Traditions, History & Mentoring - Going deep into mentoring as a goal and a noble activity, and diving into our shared history.

Creating Community Via Leadership - Encouraging and educating folks who want to be effective community leaders

Memoirs of a Gay Leather Elder: Four Decades in the Tribe - My book’s first draft.  These are stories that nobody else can tell, from a lost part of pre-AIDS gay leathermen's history.

Papa Tony's Verbal History

Part 1: Coming Out As A Young Gay Leatherman in the 1970's. 

Giving the context for what follows.

That's me on the left, with my leather mentor David Dollahite.

Part 2: When Things Went Very Bad:  

Part One (telling the stories, and counting the cost for myself, and for our Tribe), and Part Two (feedback, and fun stories).

From Papa Tony:

I am the founder of FetishMenSanDiego (FMSD), and ran it for years. Now that I have stepped down as a community leader, I am embracing the role of Elder in our Tribe.  This means that my duties have changed.  I now:

- Celebrate when men in our community have reached their next level of achievement

- Mentor others when requested, and

- Preserve our cultural history. As part of this effort, I am starting a series of talks where I share what has happened in the realm of gay leathermen in the last 38 years, based upon my own experience.

These talks are meant to be real, explanatory and true, even if they are sometimes uncomfortable to hear.  As I shift into my older years, I feel a strong need to tell my story, rather than take it to my grave, like so many men in our Tribe are doing.

Monday, December 16, 2019

Saying An Affectionate Goodbye To Everyone

I haven't been posting new material, because I have been very ill for the last year and a half.  Now, I am VERY rapidly losing control of my muscles.  My ability to walk, type, grasp, speak, swallow, balance etc. are going away, almost by the day.
I have been scanned and inspected by a good sixty or so medical professionals, and they have no idea what is causing any of this.  There is no cure, or even a slowdown. I've come to acceptance of my fate, but it's never easy.
I am surrounded by my VERY supportive Family of Choice every day, and I have superb health insurance. The problem is that I MISS everybody. 
It's hard for a super extrovert like me to be housebound, away from my loved ones in the community. Having hosted over 3,000 social events, and being part of the Leather/Kink/Fetish community since 1977, my life has now shrunk to a pinpoint.

So, I am using this opportunity to bring everybody up to date, while I still can.  My legacy is contained in the Kink Mentoring Archives, which I hope will be around for a LONG time after I am gone.
This is my way of sending out weak, wobbly hugs to everyone!

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

I am dying, and that’s okay: an extraordinary life-history of love and accomplishment

That's me, seated in the front, with the bald head.

My full-body paralysis is accelerating.  I have come to acceptance of my eventual fate.  Here is why:

Dozens of doctors, nurses, specialists and other professionals have done their very best for me.  Whatever medical predicament that has shown up in my life has proven to be so rare that it can’t be identified, cured or slowed down.

So be it.  I can’t keep fighting it, because it just stresses everyone out, and doesn’t improve a damn thing.  The last year and a half have proved that.

We all die eventually.  If I were to be hit by a truck, I would die quickly.  I would hate to go away without hearing from my loved ones first, and without telling THEM how much pleasure it has brought me to know them.

Life stuck at home would be boring if I was alone and friendless.  I am as far from alone and friendless as any human could ever be. My loved ones (particularly my husband of nearly thirty years) have been vigilant, loyal and attentive.  Every day is an exercise in gratitude and blessings.

Now that so MANY fine folks know what is going on, I get love all day, every day.  It’s a little overwhelming, but I am coping.  I’m going out with a bang, but one that just keeps happening over a stretch of months.

I have never been motivated by awards - I have always been determined to achieve RESULTS, over and over, for my entire adult life.  Well, I can’t do that any more, so now it’s time to allow people to give me loving approval, blessings and awards, big and small.  I continuously get emails, phone calls and texts, with folks checking in, which thrills me, and fills my days with loved ones sharing kindness, and generosity of spirit.
We are completing our relationships with each other, while we have the chance.  What could be better than that?

If it was just the QUANTITY of friends that was showing up, that would be pretty darned nice.  However, the folks checking in are examples of QUALITY that have brought richness and deep, meaningful satisfaction to my entire life. Absolutely nothing else could bring so much joy to my existence.  We are loving each other for the very best reasons.

I am glad to say that my love for so many people has been returned at full measure, all along.  My natural, affectionate ways have made me show up with the personality of a big, sweet Saint Bernard puppy.

That was because I had made a conscious decision to be that way, all of the way back in 1976.

At that time, I was a desperate young leather punk who had survived a violently abusive childhood, and had attempted suicide twice already.  I was heading downward fast, until the day that I asked my oldest brother what I had been like as a small child.
He told me that I had been the sweetest child ever - Whenever there was something fun going on, I was right in the middle of it.  If someone was sad, I was the first one to comfort them.  If it was time to dance, or to sing loud and proud, I was the one who got the party started.

In the course of that long-ago, brief conversation, my life transformed instantly.  I made an adult decision: the only path out of my deep despair was to be true to my loving, open-hearted and generous nature.  I decided to treat everyone as my favorite sister or brother, and to always see the majesty and worth in everyone.  I have never regretted that decision.

Shortly after that, I found my Tribe - I was surrounded with love, respect and mentoring in the gay leathermen’s community.  While I was in my early twenties, I interviewed men who had been together since the 1920’s, 1930’s and 1940’s, asking them how they had managed to make their love last.  I questioned hundreds of older, wiser men, asking them about interpersonal dynamics, finances, sex, coping mechanisms and everything else that could help me to be a better man.
AIDS Arrives

Then, things got so very much worse, just a few short years later.  The men in my life started dying, and FAST.  The men who had meant so much to me were the first to go, and I felt so incomplete - I had never had a chance to tell them how much they had impacted my life for the better.

At that time, nobody knew how AIDS was spread.  Was it transmitted through saliva, or touch, or could it be breathed in through the air?  We were all terrified.  The tightly-bound community that had shared the 1970′s rocket-ship to the stars instantly crumbled as we ran away from each other in terror.

I showed up at the hospital to visit a young man who had changed from a thriving, lively 21-year-old into a dying man in only three weeks’ time.  Nobody would go near him or comfort him. The nurses and doctors wore those full-body Hazmat suits, IF they even dared to enter his hospital room.  Most didn’t.

My young friend was dying fast, and he knew it.  In his fear and despair, what he wanted more than anything else was to be HELD, but nobody would come within fifteen feet of him.  As I stood in the doorway, he cried and cried.  I made a fateful decision that I have never regretted.  I crawled into that cold, sterile hospital bed with him, and I gave up my fears.  I held him, loved him and comforted him.

This shocked the shit out of the medical professionals, but I didn’t care.  I was there in that same hospital bed, holding him on his final day, telling him “It’s okay to go now.”  After he died, I kept going back to the hospital again and again, and did the same loving service for around fifty men as they were dying.  I knew none of them before I came to them - they were all my brothers in need, and I had pledged whatever was left of my life to bringing them comfort when they needed it most.

While this was going on, I was attending two or three funerals a week, for years.  I stopped counting at 140 friends and loved ones who died in my life.  This left a terrible wound in my heart, and I suffered terribly from Survivor’s Guilt.  For years after, I stopped allowing myself to have friends, because I couldn’t bear the pain of investing in someone, just to watch them die.  AGAIN.  I had burned out.

Creating the Post-Holocaust Phase

Then, one day, I realized that I couldn’t hide out from life any more.  My life had led me to the point of taking on leadership in the kinky leather community.  Nobody loved us, wanted us or trusted AIDS-ridden, kinky scum like us.  So, _I_ would love us.

I started creating thousands of “Guaranteed Safe Spaces” - social events that were kindly, sweet and manifestly diverse.  I was determined that every man who showed up would KNOW that he was welcome, valued and would get what he needed most - affectionate brotherhood.  At that point in gay leathermen’s history, sex was easy to find, but true friendship and long-term love was difficult to find and maintain - We were too wounded from loss, and fear of intimacy.

My goal was to end the AIDS Holocaust phase, and to bring on the NEXT phase, which was kinder, contained more variety and was downright joyful.  I worked every day to make this happen, until I couldn’t any longer.

My physical limitations have caused me to hand away the next phase to those who have gladly taken on the job.  I am surrounded by those men and women who have brought their courage, heart and idealism to the challenge of uniting us all in the best expressions of ourselves.

In the old days, San Diego’s kinky community was a toxic stew of bitterness, competition and zero-sum philosophy.  Decades later, we are known worldwide for having the lowest level of cynicism of any city on earth.  I like to think that I had some small part in San Diego’s well-earned reputation for sweetness, diversity and cooperation.  It takes a village to make that happen.  We all have to agree that we will settle for nothing less, and we DO.

I can rest now, knowing that the bright, eager and idealistic faces among us are taking on new challenges for the new days ahead.  I know these folks, having intensively mentored and befriended many of them.  I trust their bountiful natures, their true hearts, and their admirable character. I’ve seen our worst days, and after so many years, I see that our best days have arrived.

At this end of my life, I am endlessly grateful for the true friends who have brought me the deepest satisfaction.  I never got around to making my first million dollars, but that was never the goal.  In my opinion, I am richer than I ever could have imagined.  Yes, I have had challenges and setbacks, but with so many folks standing shoulder-to-shoulder with me over the years, we are co-creating the possibility of younger generations standing upon our shoulders.

I can ask for nothing better.  My work here is done.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Florentine Flogging: Another Approach to Learning

From Nachtsoul:

I have been trying to get the hang of Florentine flogging after seeing it and not quite getting the hang of it, even though there have been several good visual demonstrations of it. I almost "got it" several times and then lost it again. 

I mentioned this to the teacher of a singletail class I took a couple months ago and he got me over the hump quickly and eeasily. I'm still not as smooth as I'd like to be, but I'm good enough to add it to a flogging session. 

Here ya go: I hope it helps you.

Instead of trying to grok it visually, the teacher showed me the moves and just said to remember the words "over, over, back, back" and that made it click for me. Assuming your right hand is the dominant one:

* For the first "over" you cross your right hand over the top of your left wrist
* For the second "over" you cross your left hand over the top of your right wrist
* For the first "back", you throw backwards with your extended right wrist
* For the second "back", you throw backwards with your extended left wrist

Do this slowly at first just to get the primary motions in muscle memory. Then when you speed it up, the figure eights occur naturally. I'm sure other methods of learning work great for other folks. This is what made it click for me.

Thursday, April 4, 2019

Am I a "Creepy Uncle," Too?

Hundreds more articles like this can be found
at the Kink Mentoring Archives… Spread the word!

If we want better-mannered brothers, we need to stop driving away elder male role-models.

By Papa Tony

I have no intention of becoming a political writer, so this is not that.

I am writing this from the perspective of a mentor, role-model, and former community leader.

At the time of this writing, former Vice President Joe Biden is being raked through the coals.  I'm not going to spend much time on the politics of personal takedown during a presidential election season.  This ain't a game of beanbag-toss, and everybody wants their candidates to win, sometimes at any cost.

I get more hugs than anyone else that I have ever met.  Go ahead.  Call me creepy.  It says more about you, than about me.

My History

I came out in 1975 as the first openly-gay person in my family's entire history, and it was rough.  I would do it again, because I opened up the conversation for the members of my family who followed.  They have had a much easier time being accepted.

I was raised in a large family, with a weak mother and a violently abusive father.  I should have turned out the same, but I made adult decisions early on, and chose a diametrically-opposite path.  I consciously chose to be kind, to treat everyone as my favorite sister or brother from the first time that I met them, and I chose to become wiser with every experience.

I stopped counting at 140 lost loved ones, when AIDS killed the men around me.  I was there in the middle of the worst of it.  This should have killed my soul, and the PTSD lives with me still.  It took me decades to recover, and I struggled to learn from what I saw in the wreckage of my community.

As I stepped into leadership, I set a goal of creating safe spaces where everyone present would be warmly, affectionately welcomed and included.  I specifically wanted joyful laughter and copious, authentic hugs everywhere. Those happy behaviors would be my tangible proof that I had succeeded in bringing some healing to a community that needed it badly.

When welcoming the new, the shy and the unsure to thousands of social events over the decades, I consciously used my privileged status as a tall white, extroverted, cisgender male to bring extra support to those who were NOT like me.  I was loathe to allow an "A-List" mentality to turn any event into a clique of the 'worthy" ones over there, and everybody else wondering why they bothered to show up.

I created spaces where everyone was celebrated for having worth and a kind heart.  I went up to every new arrival, and gave them a specific welcoming speech, paraphrased here as:

"You are wanted, and welcome here.  You are going to fit in just fine, and I am here to help you to do that as soon as possible.  Here is how to understand what makes this group so different."

Not everybody went along with the plan. Around five percent of new folks found me to be creepy, and left, never to return.  I am certain that they interpreted my Saint Bernard Puppy friendliness as inauthentic, or malignant, or whatever else my appearance and mannerisms triggered in them.

That's fine.  I wasn't interested in making EVERYONE happy.  That is a fool's game, and leaves nobody happy.  Instead, I wanted everyone present (myself included) to be joyful, playful, frisky, light-hearted, childlike (NOT childish) and free to be fully self-expressed.

My events were successful and numerous - I created and hosted over 3,000 of these wildly-diverse, relaxed gatherings, before I became too old to do it any more.

Hostility and Takedown Politics

I was NOT welcomed by others who were in leadership positions, who saw my life's work as a threat, and my influence as a problem.  When so many gay men died, there were women of color in my local community who saw this as a glorious opportunity to drive away white males, and to insert people of color into leadership positions.  They vigorously pursued this project for decades.

I get the underlying goal, and I wouldn't mind it at ALL, except that they saw the local community as a zero-sum game.  I was attacked relentlessly for years and years, using gossip and slander:
  • I was supposedly HIV-positive, and intentionally infecting innocent people.
  • There had been a murder at my house.
  • People had witnessed me breaking other people's limbs, and I was stalking others with a knife.
  • I was a bad man, and "No doesn't mean NO for him!"
  • The list goes on and on.
WHY were people slandering my good name?  Because I was well-respected, influential and The Wrong Type.  This made me a threat to the local hegemony.  Dozens of equally well-intentioned white males had risen up over the years, started to become effective, and were then driven away in tears, never to return.  They didn't deserve being discriminated against.



I like to joke that I had been "voted off of the island" hundreds of times, but never went away.  It took an enormous amount of stamina and guts to continue doing good works, to never retaliate (what would be the point?), and to keep going with a loving heart.

Life as a Community Elder

Now, at this end of my life, I get a lot of love from the thousands of folks who I warmly welcomed into the larger community.  I get hugged wherever I go, and I spend between twenty and thirty hours a week mentoring others.  Who do I help?  Anyone who reaches out.  If they are kind, perceptive and want to make a difference in the world, they read my writings, they sense a kindred spirit, and they reach out, from Bangkok, Edinburgh, Savannah, Winnipeg and many other locales.

I always reach back, and I am always glad that I did.

Getting Back to the Creepy Thing

My husband of almost 29 years was NOT raised in a culture of hugs.  I was shocked to find out that my in-laws didn't like to be hugged.  Ever.  From my perspective, I saw them as emotionally stunted, and felt sorry for them.  From their perspective, I was peculiar, and way too much of too much.  They have adapted, and so have I.

When somebody says "You need at least eight hugs a day, just for maintenance," they are talking about ME.

I don't force hugs upon anyone.  I offer hugs, but most of the time, I don't have to.  The hugs come to me.  I get immobilized for my birthday, every year.  I will show up to a large holiday annual event, and as soon as I arrive, a small crowd will gather around me and envelop me in a group embrace.  I will hold space with them, be present, treasure them, and after a time, I will bless them and move on, just to have it happen again and again.

In all of these years, I KNOW that some folks don't share my nature, and I have respected that to a stringent degree.  The last thing that I want is to force myself upon others.  A little bit of me goes a long way, and there is a LOT of me.  I use my big perceptions to gently approach others who don't know how harmless the huge, scary-looking man really is.  I sincerely doubt that I have been one hundred percent perfect in my approach, though that was always my goal.

The Need for Positive Male Role-Models

A couple of decades ago, there was a long, praising article in the local gay newspaper, talking about the local shelter for queer youth.  My angry retort was published shortly thereafter, and caused a big ruckus.

I was disgusted that their article had failed to mention that the new female director of the shelter had immediately fired every male staffer and volunteer, and replaced them with women.  How did I know this?  My gay foster-son had told me so, and it pissed him off.  He had lost positive role-models because it was considered perfectly fine to block young males from older males.  Only women can raise non-toxic males!

Great theory, but it doesn't work.  Yes, young men need Mommies, but they need Daddies, too.  If we treat all males with suspicion, then we teach fear to the new generations, and the toxicity just gets worse.  How are young men going to know what it takes to succeed in the world, when males in general are under a dark cloud from the get-go?

What is the Fix?

Yes, I know - My work as a conscious role-model isn't encountered very often, but if our culture is going to get better, we want to identify, praise and encourage good men as visible role-models.  It's counterproductive to only point at the bad ones and say "GET HIM, everybody!"  It is also a terrible idea to drive away any man because he is imperfect.

I have done a lot of work with the Mankind Project, which is a support-system for men so that we can be better human beings, and get the emotional support that we need.  More and more groups like this are forming.  If we are going to have a better, more functional future, we need to shift radically in a direction that is positive and supportive of the man who is respected because he is respectable, admired because he is admirable, honored because he is honorable, and loved because he is lovable.

We DO exist.  It's time to notice.

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Why Love Makes A Night Of Kink Even Better

Hundreds more articles like this can be found
at the Kink Mentoring Archives… Spread the word!


Kink can be practiced while being involved in different ‘relationships’. These may include playing together with a friend (or even acquittance), as a service (paying a Mistress for her services, for example), with a stranger (at a party or club) or with your loving partner. At Bedroom Bondage, we are all about exploring kink as a couple, so that is what I’ll be writing about.

Trust & Safety

There’s a good reason that I start out with this one. Nothing is more important than being able to put your full trust in your partner, and it is such a beautiful thing when you can. You know each other well, and should not have to worry about your play time turning into a bad experience because, for example, your partner does not respect your boundaries. 

A lot of people seem to think that it is all about being beaten up and tortured, but the ones that know better are very aware that there is a fine line between pleasure and pain. Domination and submission is always a matter of consent.Being able to completely give yourself to your lover is an incredibly sexy, freeing feeling! When your man has all the control over your body, you will be very aware of every little bit of it, enhancing all sensations.

Feeling Comfortable

Believe me, the more comfortable you feel with your partner, the sexier you’ll feel, and the hotter it’ll get! You’ll be way more relaxed about revealing your deepest, darkest desires… Who knows what kind of dirty wishes the two of you share without even realising it? 


Something that should never be missing. When the submissive is totally exhausted, loving care from her Master is the cherry on a already delicious cake. It simply makes the whole experience even better, when he drapes a soft blanket over you, brings you something to drink (I always seem to be up for a big glass of juice or water myself after such intense hours), gives you a nice massage… 

I honestly couldn’t say what would be better than to be softly kissed, ‘I love you’ being whispered in my ear, and sweetly fall asleep after this kinky, sexy intimate moment together.When you take good care of your submissive, she’ll take good care of you, too. That’s exactly what it’s all about. Not just for the submissive to take care of her Master, but to take care of each other.