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HURTS SO FINE: EROTIC ABRASION — David Stein

  • Mr. S Leather 385 8th St San Francisco, CA, 94103 United States

The skin is by far the largest organ in the human body, but most SM techniques evoke only a small fraction of its potential for painful pleasure. Even a thorough flogging stimulates the nerves in just a few square feet of flesh. Wake up as much of his skin as you want, and leave him crying, moaning, and begging for mercy — or for more! — with cheap, disposable abrasion gear, from sandpaper and emery boards to an endless variety of brushes. Abrasion can be exquisitely calibrated from sensuous to excruciating, and sometimes the effect is all out of proportion to its immediate cause. A long, patient brushing can leave your bottom's skin so sensitive that simply breathing on it will make him shriek! Most abrasion play is very low risk, but even in a heavy scene you can minimize the risk of transmitting blood-borne diseases by taking simple precautions.

DAVID STEIN knew he was twisted very early, before puberty, but he didn't get into the gay leather/SM scene until his late 20s, first in Pittsburgh and then, from 1977 on, in New York City. (See details here.) He's always been a big ol' bottom except for a period of about a year in the early 1980s when he explored the other side. Although he got laid a lot more, he enjoyed it much less, so he switched back for good, with one exception — demos of erotic abrasion.

He learned about abrasion in 1981 from the man who more or less invented it as an SM technique, Chuck Barrow, a full member of the Chicago Hellfire Club. It was Chuck, in fact, who showed David that he had a strong masochistic streak and wasn't only a bondage bottom and slave wannabe. Their SM sessions were both the heaviest David had ever had and also among the most satisfying. After Chuck died of AIDS a few years later, David sought to pass on his abrasion "gospel" in an essay, "Oh, the Pleasure of the Pain! An Ode to Abrasion." This was widely reprinted and came to the attention of an Australian leatherman, Bob Buckley (also now gone), who developed his own spin on abrasion and popularized it through his scenes at Inferno.

Meanwhile, over the years David gave programs and demos on abrasion both for his own group, New York's GMSMA (Gay Male SM Activists, which disbanded in 2009), and numerous others. In 1980, David had co-founded GMSMA — which became at one time the largest gay s/m organization in the world — and he helped lead it through 1991.  In 1983 he coined the phrase “safe, sane, and consensual s/m” for the group’s Statement of Purpose. (Go here for his essay about the origin, use, and misuse of the “SSC” slogan.)

In 1999 he co-founded the NYC gay chapter of MAsT (Masters And slaves Together), which he also led for a number of years. He's a widely published author on SM and M/s topics, and for six years he was the safety columnist for Bound&Gagged magazine. He has presented at numerous leather events, including the Leather Leadership Conference, the Master/slave Conference, South Plains Leatherfest, Southeast Leatherfest, and the Northwest Leather Celebration — where he'll be speaking this year about BDSM Ethics, just a few days before his LDG appearance. His M/s novel, Carried Away, was published in 2002 by Daedalus and is still available. In 2009 he published Ask the Man Who Owns Him, a nonfiction book based on interviews with gay Masters and slaves in long-term relationships, and Boots, Bondage, and Beatings, a collection of his shorter fiction, under his own  imprint, Perfectbound Press.  Since then he's published kinky gay story collections by Thom Magister and Christopher Pierce, and more titles are in the works.


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Update: David is kindly allowing us to post the handout he brought as an aid to his program. Its a short, excellent read. Please enjoy your erotic abrasion play :)