Thursday, May 26, 2011

To Brat Or Not To Brat? That Is The Question...

I'd try to spankify more Hamlet, but I just don't have it in me today. Bratting. It is one of those terms that makes me roll my eyes. I'll tell you why. It seems to have become a catch-all term for anything a bottom does that is deemed "spankable behavior". Guess what folks? Having a personality doesn't make me a "brat". I wrote this post about labels a few weeks ago but brat and bratting aren't ones that I got into. Okay, I can understand how to some extent signals can be misconstrued. If one is at a spanking party, isn't anything someone does or says a sign that they want to play? Uh, no. I'm not even talking about over the top (pun not intended) pranks, tying someone's shoelaces together, hiding their paddle, throwing water balloons, or anything like that. That type of thing is what some people would more clearly define as "bratting" and overly irritating bratting, at that.

Lesson 1: Sarcasm Doesn't Always = Bratting

I'm talking about things that are part of my basic personality that in a spanko setting may be seen as signals. I'm really quite shy, really! But once I get to know someone better it all comes out. I have a very sarcastic sense of humor. I tease a LOT with friends, that is how we banter. In everyday life, I also curse like a sailor, but I do make a conscious effort to curb that around people who are bothered by it. Tops, I promise I'm not trying to confuse you with how I interact. That brings us to the second lesson.

Lesson 2: Know Your Audience

Knowing your audience is one of the most important things to remember in the scene. In life, really. My sarcasm doesn't really come out full force to someone I don't know well. So if you've had a run in with it, props to you for being a good friend. Lol. I know that if someone is a Positive Polly that they may not love this Sarcastic Sally. Generally I try to surround myself with those who I know will be a good audience, but if Positive Polly pokes her head into the conversation, I'm capable of reeling it in a bit. I definitely tone things down with people I'm not as familiar with because I don't know how they'll take my sense of humor and my intent is not to annoy. And if I did completely gauge someone wrong and they told me to cut it out, I would immediately do so. That takes us to the third lesson.

Lesson 3: Be Aware Of Your Surroundings

This is especially important if you are in a party setting. Be sure to only address the specific person you mean to. If you throw an attitude out to the whole room, don't be surprised if someone besides the one you intended approaches you about it. Don't go over the top with people you don't intend to play with, that's not polite. Especially men, they already have so much trouble interpreting signals. Lol. You don't need to confuse them further. If you are witnessing an interaction between two people though, don't butt in. You may think one is bratting the other but that just may be how they are with each other. Stay out of it. Being aware of those around you also applies to the Alice Attention-Grabbers. You don't have to have your On switch to full brat mode turned on all night. There are others at the party too and trying to make it all about you is just rude to everyone else in attendance.


Lesson 4: Use Common Sense

If you ask 10 tops how they feel about bratting, you are likely to get 10 different answers. If you know the person you want to play with finds it funny to have their paddle hidden, then go for it. Scene created. But if you don't know someone well, throwing that water balloon at them is not cool and probably just ruined their night. Don't be a jerk, use common sense. We're all adults here.

This is slightly off topic, but another phrase I can't stand is topping from the bottom. It is often used in a negative way to indicate that a bottom was taking over the scene. I've never bossed a top around to say "use this implement this many times and then do this", yada yada yada. That is what I think the true definition of it would be. Where I often see it used though is a top not liking the feedback they got from the bottom. My friend Zelle put it best- "I'm the bottom, I'm in control, but I choose to put you in charge." I totally agree with that. Honestly, the bottom does have control. But both parties, especially when playing for the first time, should have that discussion beforehand about likes/dislikes/wants/needs/limits. If I say no wood and you think that's "topping from the bottom", well that is ridiculous and I probably don't want to play with you anyway. I will add that I've played with many wonderful people who have been great about giving and getting feedback and I appreciate that. Don't want to come across as too much of a Negative Nancy. ;-)

Brat on. Or not.

7 comments:

joeyred51 said...

Lea: Another thoughtful blog post.

To me, you are witty and funny in conversations and in chat. Perhaps, a Witty Wilma or Hilarious Harriet describes you better. (Sorry, I could not resist making that comment.)

On the serious side, I do not like to brat to Tops. In fact, my nature is to be polite and respectful. I prefer to politely ask a female Top/switch if they want to play. Thanks to the wonderful friends we share and their desire to be helpful, this approach works well.

I prefer to give the Top control over the scene. However, this usually takes place after the Top has discussed the type of play I like and have reviewed the safe words with me. We are very fortunate to have so many caring female and male Tops within our group of friends. All of them want us to have a safe and fun experience.

Also, a lesson I have learned is to respect personal space. This is part of your Lesson 3. Observe body language and do not interrupt a conversation. And, keep ones distance from a public scene in progress.

Have a great Memorial Day weekend,
joey

Erica said...

Ah, the brat controversy. I'd say you covered it well, and if I wanted to condense it, I'd do so with your Lesson 4 -- Use some freaking common sense, folks. The concept of bratting gets a negative rap because some people abuse it. A creative and clever brat should provoke and pique, not annoy and anger.

I like your alliterations, too. :-)

Lea said...

@joey, I like "Hilarious Harriet", I'll accept that. Hehe. Hope you have a great weekend as well.

@Erica, "provoke and pique, not annoy and anger", that is a good way to put it.

Season said...

Well said, Lea! For me I sometimes engage in a little playful bratting with Michael when I know we are having a fun session. But when it comes to true discipline, we have an agreement that I will never brat to get a punishment spanking. That would feel somehow dishonest. For example, he knows I would never intentionally be late for work just to trigger a spanking.

I love Erica's summary! Great topic, Lea. :-)

Lea said...

@Season, I totally agree about not bratting to get a punishment spanking. That kind of defeats the purpose.

bree512 said...

Thank you Lea and all for another lesson. Yes, common sense seems the way to go, but some people do not have common sense I fear.

I know people call it bratting, but I just call it being a little silly.

I do not brat unless I am in the mood. I will do it sometimes if someone provokes me into doing it.

Over-the-top-bratting just does not seem right to me. Too many things can go wrong and feelings can be hurt even if you know the person you are doing this all too.

Being a good brat is an art form. Knowing when to do it is a science. Communication is key.

Directly asking whether a person likes that sort of thing should always be done first in my opinion. You have to learn to read the body language of the other person also. Just because they like it one day doesn't mean they will like it the next.

I stay on the verbal side of bratting rather than the physical side. I never get real personal with the verbal bratting or use bad language.

When I am in a bad mood I do not brat. It is more when I am in a good mood that I tend to do it. I have also noticed that I will do it as I am being spanked to get a harder and longer spanking. It usually works.

I always use bratting to make the other person laugh, not to make them anger.

Telling a Top to spank you harder or telling them they are doing something wrong when they are spanking you is not bratting to me. If I am not getting what I want out of the spanking, I am not going to keep the spanking going.

Yes you discuss things beforehand like implements, but sometimes the Tops forget. You have to remind them. I see nothing wrong with that.

I have to brat. It's in my blood. Before I know it my fingers have typed the words and hit send on my emails or it is spewing out of my mouth before I realize. I am in brat mode. Usually, it's because the consure-brat-o-meter is malfunctioning or its batteries have worn out and I have forgotten to bring my recharger.

I admit I sometimes do plot on getting my favorite spanking. That would be a discipline spanking for a real life issue. This happens only when I do not have a companion and/or I am not getting enough spankings that I need in a week’s time. Is that really bratting doing that? I think it is more of a survival instinct reaction.

Ummmm.....was there a question that I was supposed to answer here? I have lost track of what kind of post the moderator would like from me. sigh.

I guess that means I am rambling on again...

Hope my comments were enlightening in some way to someone about whether to brat or not.

It all depends on whether that is you cup of tea.

I take my tea with six lumps thank you. I have a sweet tooth for sugar cane.

Lea said...

@bree, lol no there was no particular question you were supposed to answer. It's always interesting to see various opinions on the subject.