There are rules to every game, and learning about kink starts with identifying some basic BDSM definitions -- and reading this week's cover story, "Kink of the Jungle," of course. Below is an abbreviated selection of terms that may be unknown to non-kinksters, or as they are known, vanillas. Read them with caution, because if a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, then a little more might inspire a permanent vacation to the dark side.
Anal training: Inserting progressively long and/or girthy objects like butt plugs into an anus to stretch the sphincter for sexual activity. Author's note: Lube is your friend.
Black sheet party: Slang term for an orgy involving people into BDSM. Author's note: Not to be confused with a blanket party -- that is the bad kind of bad.
Cell popping: A form of body modification, also referred to as micro-branding, which involves using a red-hot needle or poker to make a series of dots on the skin. Author's note: Of course it hurts, but so does love.
Dragon's tail: A type of whip with a broad, triangular piece of suede or leather that tapers down to a point. Author's note: So much ouch.
Emotional play: A type of psychological BDSM play involving humiliation, fear, shame or other elements that cause the recipient to have an emotional response. Author's note: It's like watching Fox News, only more fun.
Figging: Inserting a piece of ginger or a hot chili pepper into the anus to produce a burning sensation. Author's note: Make sure you can remove it. That trip to the E.R. is not one you want to explain to your HMO.
Golden shower: The act of urinating on someone. Author's note: It's the bio-filtered drink of champions.
Hard limit: A non-negotiable boundary that is discussed and agreed upon as part of safe BDSM play. Author's note: "No" really means "no" here.
Informed consent: The principle of consent being given with full knowledge of events, circumstances and participants -- and the ability to give consent, i.e. not being coerced or under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Author's note: This is why screwing dogs is a bad idea -- also because screwing a dog is gross.
Jerkoff: The vanilla idiot who shows up uninvited at a kink play party and tries to screw everything that moves until he is either asked to vacate or is removed from the premises. Author's note: Seriously, nobody likes this guy.
Knife play: BDSM play that involved the use of knives to psychologically torment and/or draw blood from a player. Author's note: Jeweled daggers work well here.
Lactation: A fetish for human female breast milk, sometimes involving the actual expression of milk. Author's note: Mothers need love, too.
Mindfuck: The act of manipulating someone's perception of reality. Author's note: The Tea Party does this every day. Negotiation: The act of discussing rules and expectations within a scene, or in a BDSM relationship. Author's note: Scenes can go sour without communication, so talk.
Objectification: The act of dehumanizing a person for pleasure. Author's note: Human footstools could be the new cool furniture.
Pansexual: A person who engages in erotic or sexual play with persons of any gender or sexual orientation. Author's note: Yep -- it's time you all learned that it goes beyond bisexual these days.
Queening: Also known as "face-sitting," this act involves a person who consensually "forces" another person into mouth-to-genital or mouth-to-anal contact. Author's note: Going ass-to-mouth is optional.
Roman showers: The act of vomiting on another person. Author's note: Don't judge. Maybe it's hot to get someone's tummy goo on your face.
Soft limit: A boundary that is more flexible, one which can be "pushed" to a comfortable degree. Author's note: "You wanna wedge what up my ass, exactly? Okay, fine."
Twue dominant: A "twue" dominant is a pejorative term for a dominant who expresses that his/her way of interacting is the only true way. Such a dominant can also be nicknamed "Count/Countess Domula" or "Sir/Lady LordyBalls." Author's note: Internet sites are loaded with these people. Use caution, because they won't.
Unicorn: A single, bisexual female, often a submissive, who enjoys playing with couples. They are called this because they are hard to find, and even harder to capture, like a mythical creature. Author's note: Good luck finding one of these.
Vampire gloves: These are leather gloves with small metal spikes embedded in the palm areas, used to produce a stinging effect on skin. Author's note: These are perfect for beginners to experiment with.
White Knight: A sometimes derisive nickname for dominant men who "rescue" female submissives from other unsuitable dominants, situations, or from themselves. Author's note: These guys are called Captain-Save-a-Ho in the vanilla world.
X: Also known as ecstasy, this is a street drug that you should not use during scene play, because getting wasted and sceneing is not a good idea for reasons of safety and consent. Author's note: Trust me, the sensations you experience in sober BDSM play will be enough.
Your mother: The woman who gave birth to you may be into kink. Ask her sometime over tea. Author's note: She told me all about her kinks yesterday while I was spanking her goodnight.
Zipper: A series of clothespins along a length of string or yarn, then placed on parts of the body and removed either one by one or all at once to produce various sensations. Author's note: And you thought all they could do was hold underpants onto a clothesline.
More from our Follow That Story archive: "The underage sex trafficking panic was fueled by anything but science."
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.