No Excuses

I say this all the time but it bears repeating.. its the little things that are such a huge part of my satisfaction with my Master slave relation.

A gentleman hit my car recently, then proceeded to direct a lot of hostility towards me.  For me, this was an unwillingness to accept responsibility, a desire to blame someone or something else.

Serendipity happens. I often wonder why the people I come into contact with, were presented in that time and place. How will this weave into the fabric that will become the lessons of this life? ~ X Quote

When you screw up, sometimes you have to fall on your sword.  In other words, you have to be willing to accept your failure, and any pain and suffering that comes with owning up to it.  I become very unhappy with persons who present excuses and likewise, I am very forgiving for a person who shows they can own their actions.

So, X, you are probably wondering: Where are you going with this meandering? eh?

Well first, I could be upset about this mess my car is in.  It will be a major inconvenience, and a reduction in resale value and certainly cost me time and money I don’t want to spend on it.. but I would rather be happy.. so I choose to be.  Instead I am loving the simple interactions with my slave. Tonight, a simple thing is pleasing me immensely, especially after my run in with the afore mentioned hostility. Where we focus, plays a huge role in our happiness.

In public, my slave is very good with her protocols.  One protocol requires that as soon as I finish a plate of food, she take the plate away and put it under hers.   If you sit at a table with me, you will find I am always taking table real estate.. pushing salt, pepper and napkin holders back, to clear a larger area for myself.  It is just one more of my little Domination quirks.  And of course my protocols support that.  So tonight, after finishing a meal at home, a plate was not removed.  It was turkey tetrazzini by the way.. I do love that meal.  I would recommend you try the Stoffers brand and if you like it, then try a scratch made version.

So I asked Izrina:  Do you think that the protocols you do in public, you should also do at home?   She had finished sooner and now looked up from a suduko puzzle she was working on.  She looked around, trying to figure out what she had missed.  It took her only a second to realize where I was headed with this.  The empty plate quickly vanished.

No excuses made, just a quick acceptance of the way we are.  No anger at herself, that might be redirected at me.  Just Master and slave, doing their thing.  I love that she attends to me, and is fast to respond to my desires. Was I angry that a protocol had to be reminded?  Of course not.  I was enough that she sheeplishly, and submissively corrected the oversight.  She fell on her sword, and hoped for the best outcome.. and got it.

And she?  Does she love this?  Hmmm.  Yes.  It makes family uncomfortable when I order her, use her, but her eyes light up, and she fairly purrs afterward, when its time to curl up at Master’s feet.  Equity of exchange.  The trust she offers is exactly the right thing to exchange for my gift of Domination.  I wonder sometimes what jems I could offer to help others find this happiness?

Is it just finding the right person, or is it a philosophy and way of life that facilitates this, or maybe its a little of both?  Both I think.  Opportunity is nothing without the will and ability to capitalize, and visa-versa.   I wish more people could have this, feel this.   I understand that a TPE or CNC life is not for everyone, but it certainly is the key to MY happiness.. and to that of my slave.  Life is truly good my friends, Carpe Diem!

Weakness, Conflicted

Its been nearly two weeks since my last post.  Thanksgiving travel is behind me and the day-to-day routines have returned.  Thanksgiving was nice.  My daughter traveled some five hours from one direction, and I traveled five hours from another, and we met at my sister’s for our traditional family get together for the Holiday.  Except the whole family doesn’t participate.. in fighting..  I’ll leave it at that.  Blood does not a family make.

My daughter and all of her friends are at college now, save one, who is going to college locally.  She asked to join me this year.  When she was younger, she would often come with us, two young girls in the back seat as we made the long drive.  We would stop along the way, more interested in having adventures than making some self imposed deadline.

Now she is eighteen, and it was somewhat odd to have this young lady who is nearly a daughter to me, in the front seat chatting away.  Her views are quite liberal, and we had many a spirited discussion.  At one point we traveled through two states and I didn’t even notice it.  She tends to dress in black, and chains and never wears a dress.  She wants to be a Dominant some day.

Everyone dresses up for the Thanksgiving meal, but the next day when she came out in dress (again), I blurted out “what are you wearing?”.   “Fuck you”, she said and closed her door.  I thought about it.  She caught me off guard.  She has always been gender neutral,  so it never occurred to me that she might want to be “pretty”.  I apologized.  Its odd.. I think she talks more candidly with me than anyone (except maybe my daughter), and yet I still don’t know if she likes boys or girls or both or neither.  I don’t think she knows.  I do know she definitely wants a slave-male or female.  That idea makes her smile.

Anyway, the trip is behind us, I am caught up on work, and now a cold has set in.  I got the flu shot so I don’t expect it to last long.  You know when you feel like crap, and you can’t breath, and when you cough it feels like your head will explode, so you try not to cough but have to, so you go back and forth between weazing and feeling your head explode?  Yeah, that’s the one I have.  I just wanted to fall asleep until it was over.  I was not good company, and no use at work.  This is where the title for this blog comes in.

I hate feeling weak.  Normally I refuse to give into to any weakness.  But there are times when your body needs rest and you should indulge it.  Normally when I am sick, I work, until my day is done and go straight home and straight to bed to try to get twelve hours sleep.  I repeat as needed.  Not this time.  It was all I could do to focus.  I was OK with allowing this weakness, of not pushing through it.  Then Izrina came home and began to care for me.  I was a Happy Master.   I got past my guilt of allowing this weakness.

Izrina however has reoccurring pain from a few teeth that should be pulled and because of complicated reasons, can’t be.  So every six months or so, she has these fits of pain.  Well in the middle of my “weakness”, she had one of those episodes.  I had just made peace with the notion of not going to work and now my slave needs me.  But I need to sleep and I mean really, really, need to sleep.  Dammit!   This is a lose-lose situation.  If I do stay up to comfort, my own health degrades while doing little to really help the situation.  If I do not stay up to comfort, I am being a terrible Master and the guilt I feel is quite strong.  So I am conflicted.  Weakness and conflicted, not good.

The harsh reality is that the best I can do is make sure she has an appointment with a dentist, and is taking pain meds at regular intervals.  There is a trick when normal pain meds won’t do the job.  You switch between two kinds of over the counter pain meds.

Lets say you have acetaminophen and ibuprofen, each of which should be taken every four hours.  You take your acetaminophen and two hours later you take your ibuprofen.  After that you take acetaminophen four hours after the last dose as recommended, and the same for ibuprofen, but you are actually taking a pain med once every two hours.  When my daughter was just two, and had a sustained fever of 104 for quite some time, we took her to the hospital and that is when I learned that trick.  Obviously you reserve such measures for serious occasions, but it does work quite well for short bouts of extreme pain.

What was my choice, you not doubt are wondering?   Did I stay up or go to sleep?  It was to get the rest I needed.  Izrina was constantly up getting more pain meds and it was hard to sleep, but we made the best of it.  When both of us have issues at the same time it is not a good thing.  At one point, she was curled up under my arm, and she began to cry from the pain.   Softly, because she didn’t want to wake me.   You can imagine how much that tore me up inside.

It would have been a wonderful thing to write about, if I had needed her support and she had been there for me in my hour of need.  Instead, we leaned on each other, neither quite up to the task and yet still coming together, like to war-weary soldiers wounded but keeping each other going.  Actually, this is something to be proud of in its own way.  My first thought had been that at times the support goes the other way, but really, when two people work to make a life together they never stop supporting each other no matter the challenges.  That should be the take-away from this.  The Master and slave relation should not interfere with the basic need to have someone who loves and cares for you.  Rather is should amplify and improve on it.

Izrina is now and always will be a slave in her heart.  I am her Master.  Sometimes I am human, and my strength to overcome the weakness of this body defeats my desire to always be strong.  But my will does not change, nor does hers.  We will always seek to be a Master and a slave, and we will always seek to support each other within our sacred roles. If the lines get blurred sometimes, you can chalk that up to the fact that no truth is ever simple nor black and white.  Such views are for the lazy of mind, and sheep.

She is off to work, has an appointment, and has her meds.  If the dentist can’t pull those teeth, maybe a root canal can be done so there are no nerves left to cause these issues.  There has to be a solution.  I am getting involved in the next visit.

All of this aside, I am encouraged by the days events.  If you have your health, you have everything.  Believe it.  Carpe Diem my friends.  Go make a great day!

“This slave”

I got a text, it read:

“This slave needs a nap”

Because I tend to reflect on every aspect of my Master/slave relation, this short sentence is fodder for a blog.

At first, the nilla side of me noticed the third person speech, and flinched at the raw objectification.  But she IS an object, albeit a very valued one, but an object none-the-less that I possess for my use.  Izrina talks in third person, because she is property, because she is not allowed to say “my Master” or “my anything”.  She talks of herself as an object, because I am crafting a mindset that is not for some, uncomfortable for others.

Almost as quickly, the Dominant side countered with: “Of course she speaks in third person. That is how the mindset is created.”  It is through words and actions that we create the conditions where that which we desire is comfortable, and normal.  It is through our daily exchanges, that we sometimes forget that others do not share this love or mindset.  In fact, shifting between nilla and Ms thinking can be awkward at times.

And then the Master in me judged my accomplishments with this slave.   The things she did without thought now, the things that needed reminding.  I  thought of the many reflections, like this one I was undertaking now.  I thought of the dozens of adjustments to my style, to the manner in which I brought forth my canvas, my creation, she who would be my perfect slave.

And then my all too human side thought…. God, I don’t ever want to go through all that training again.  Not when I have right here the perfect slave for me.  I grinned at that, and was so amused, I shared it with her later.  Partly because I know it would reassure her to know she is perfect for me, and partly because she needs to know that it is no accident – that it takes work to get to this point, and partly because when she realizes the first two things, she could worry less about what it would take to lose me.

Some slaves may worry about being perfect.  I find that to be normal.  But it is the Master’s place, honor and privilege to decide if a slave is “worthy”.  No slave should presume to make such a decision for an owner.  It is enough to trust, so that the owner may shoulder the decisions and worry.  Getting to the point beyond worry, where you both are comfortable and happy, takes a lot of work, and that too is normal.  Izrina knows that she may not punish herself, that too is my privilege.  There is so much to learn and unlearn. Izrina knows all this but still needs reassurance from time to time.

We have so many protocols, rituals, and rules, but collectively they shape our lives… both our lives, and we are much happier to live this way.  It took me quite a while to find the right material from which I could create this slave.  It is not always an easy thing to do, to find someone who compliments you, but I wish you all, the very best of luck in that search.   I can say this.  It is worth the patience and effort.  Carpe Diem my friends,  Make a great day!

When being a Master is no fun

That’s right boys and girls, pull up a chair and let ol’Master X learn-a-tate you.  Some days its just no fun being a Master.

If you are young and full of cum, it seems like having a slave who will serve you dinner on bended knee and then suck your cock while you watch football is something you might have to slap yourself for, just to make sure you are not dreaming.

Yeah, having a slave is great.  You can fuck her in the shower, and over the kitchen counter,  test every bit of furniture in your house, leave a spot here, a spot there,  and maybe if you are feeling naughty, test your friends bathroom together, or maybe some other semi-public place that isn’t yours.  Sure, who can get enough of that great sex, whenever you want it, however you want it?  I love the feeling of something wet around my cock when we are both feeling a bit naughty.   Its exciting.

But here is the thing.  You should not be asking for sex for the first thirty days of having a slave.  I know, you are thinking, but X, have you lost your fucking noodle?  I have this sweet young tidbit here, all firm, wet and waiting, eager to go, and you want me to just hold my dick myself and fap off??? What the fuck X?

Lets look at this three years from now.  Do you plan to be with that same wench, or are you just going to dump her when she bores you?  Come on, be honest.  You know bitches are a pain in the ass, even ones that say they want to be a slave, so do you plan on just fucking it and forgetting it, or are you thinking of actually giving something back?  Truth is, you probably want to just fuck it as long as its easy.  Hell, who wouldn’t want that.

But I am here to tell you that every relation, and I mean every freaking one, even the Master slave ones, are work at some point.  Sorry bucko… there ain’t no Disney land of fairy fucks that slave until you are bored and then go poof and disappear.  You gotta be a prick to get rid of them and guess what?  Everyone eventually knows you are a prick.  You can ride that gravy train just so long and then everyone has your number.  Everyone knows you are Sir Master asshole prick numero uno.

Look, I’m not saying you gotta give up all that fine ass to be a great Master.  I am just saying that you have to put away your teenage thinking on this one and get ready to be real about it.  Being a Master means a lot more than just getting some ass.  An acquaintance of mine has had a slave for over decade and you think every time he walks into the bedroom looking to get some, his slave is eager and ready?  Fuck no.   But he’s in charge and if he wants sex, he’s going to have some.  Even ten years later.  How many husbands get to say that?

He might say, how about if I give you fifteen minutes to get in the mood, or he might say, if you aren’t going to enjoy this, what’s the best orgasm you can give me, and still be in the mood for it?   He’s going for options they can both be happy with.  His slave isn’t the young artisan well of wetness from ten years ago, but still, that is still some good ass, and both are living up to their sacred roles.  If control, given or taken is your kink, sex is always good, when you make a Master slave relation work.


Now slaves.  You are probably wondering:  Yes X!, that’s all fine and dandy but where is my tidbit in all this diatribe?  What sage advice have you for this wet and willing slut?  Well my eager little flogger bunnies, now that we have talked about it from a Dom perspective, let’s just look at it from the other shall we?  Hmm that would be the side that looks up through shy eyelashes, and a coy smile that betray a warm and willing submission, yes?

When you first meet Mr Sir Master, the Dommliest Dom of all creation, all fierce, intimidating and just fucking hot as hell, sure you want to jump him.  Who wouldn’t want Mr bad boy to get a firm hold on you and make you his breathless sex toy?  Its perfectly naturally to want to nurse that weak kneed, wondering what he’ll do with this slave, excitement of being taken and used again, and again and again.  It’s hot, hot, hot, to find the bad boy of your dreams standing over you, rough in some ways, gentle in others, that makes your heart race, and your blood pound.  Its good to get a good pounding.  Its good to discover you are wet and willing at the drop of a hat.  There is nothing wrong with begging to be used, taken, and having it leave you exhausted, dripping, and full; satisfied to the core.

But again, that is the heat of the new Master, the excitement of sex, the smell and the love of it.  Where is he going to be in three years?   What happens when he comes in, and just wants his dinner and to watch football?  Are you going to nag?  Does the dream turn into just another crappy boyfriend?   What assurances do you have that there is more meat on the bone, than just his dick?   Is there any substance to your Master-to-be?  Does he have the other staying power, the one that holds back a temper, and puts up with your shit when your slave side is hiding?  Will he love you right on through a crisis?  Is THAT guy inside the Master you want to fuck?

Those answers can’t be found under a man.  Looking up at him is great, but don’t do it naked.  At least not at first.  The answers you seek are found standing beside him, BEFORE you’ve given consent.  If you are going to be a slave, be one, all in, nothing held back.  Make your body a gift, but don’t do it on day one.  You need time to come to that decision. You know that trust takes time and you know trust is absolutely fucking key to a Master slave relation.  Do the math.  Add it up.  Time+Trust=Answers.  You need time to evaluate this person who says they are a Master.  You need to find out if you and they are compatible.  There are worse things than being alone.

Don’t be the slave with the Velcro collar either.  The slave who is serially monogamous.  The one who had and slept with five Masters this year, but never while wearing someone else’s collar.  Oh yeah, she was like, “totally true” to those Master she served.  She was always faithful to the collar, right up until the time she took a new one.  Don’t think that shit won’t stink after a while.  If that’s the way you roll, people will come to expect it, and the Masters who come looking for you, will probably just be looking for some ass.  If you want more, expect more.


Look.  I’m talking to Masters and slaves now.  Damn, I know its hard to not go straight for the hot fuck.  We all want that.  Hell, I’ve made more than my share of impulsive choices in the past, but its behind me now.  I know better.  I not be young, but I’m still full of cum, and I can control it.  If you want to build something that lasts and keeps on getting better, you gotta step up and demand better… or walk away.  You can do that, if you don’t give in to impulse.  And if your red flags are flying, you can realize that its not the right time and place for you to be with a particular person, and just walk away.. politely of course.

Why the title and blog tonight? My slave ticked me off again. Yesterday in fact.  I wasn’t happy, she wasn’t happy.  But I stayed a Dominant.  I  laid down new expectations and doubled down on things.  She had a very hard time with her evening ritual : Daily gratitude.  When you are having a bad day, finding things to be grateful for is hard.  But she came through.  (Good girl my pet, every day we get a little better).

This evening was nice.  Tomorrow, if my expectation are met, they will be better still.  Or they might be worse.  I expect better though.  At the time it was no fun.  Looking back though, this kind of control and adjustment and new control is EXACTLY what I am about, and in retrospect, it will have been fun.  Every relation has work to be done, and if you are not with a person who can do or will do the work, then move on.

Obscurity, revisited – shhh! The secret of happiness revealed.

I was re-reading my last post, finding and correcting the spelling mistakes that I always seem to find AFTER I click post, and this hit me:

Its been another great day as a Master and property owner.  As she left for work this morning, I said, see you tonight.  She said, I wish I had a remote that allowed me to fast forward to then.  It made me smile and be warmed.

You may not see anything wrong in that statement but Izrina would catch it right away.  If SHE said this, I’d be on her right away.  The part of this that would cause this is “It made me smile”.   I try to strike that kind of language from my world, and hers.

Nothing, and I mean absolutely nothing should “make me” anything.  I will “make me”.  I will choose what I attach focus to, and what I dismiss.  It is by this action that I create a happier me.  It can be an effort, but what I get in return is exactly what you want.. Its what anyone reading this wants.

Oh sure, you may be alone and want a Master, or a slave. You may want to be held, or have better sex.  You may want a sexier car or maybe just one that is more dependable.  You may want to own your house, or have a second one for rental income or a vacation spot.  I could guess forever at what you think you want, but here is the point: You want these things because you want happiness.  Really, all you want is happiness.   Does it matter where you find it, if you have it?

What I might have said was: I focused on those words, and felt warmed by them.  THIS would be more in keeping with what I teach.  “Made me” is so very hard to drive out of your language.  I’ve been at it for years and it still creeps in from time to time.

We embrace things or not. We give focus to things or not.  And when we embrace or focus on a thing, does it “make us” still?  To answer that question, I would point out that a Master may give oral service to a slave and still be in control.  A slave can give oral service to a Master and still be a consensual slave. Neither was ultimately “made” to give service.  Both chose to embrace it.

Through consent the slave chose to be Dominated.  The oral service was by extension, a choice.  The Master chose to exercise their Dominance in this manner and perhaps was a bit sadistic with the orgasm, to use that control further.  Both performed the same service, yet their head was in a completely different place.  When we consent, when we give focus to a thing, it no longer “makes us”.

When we say, this made me, or that made me, we are giving up control to every possible good and bad thing in our life.  But when we give focus to the good and dismiss the bad, we take control of our happiness, and our lives become more rich and full. Effort is rewarded.  You will find it easier to ignore the bad, and enjoy the good over time.  No doubt about it, the phoenix has risen.  Got to finish up a little house repair, and then its time for a motorcycle ride I think.  Life is good!

May the force be with you

I have often heard folks in the BDSM community offer a simple explanation for the difference between a sub and a slave: A slave makes one choice, who they will serve.   Well!  When you put it that way it seems pretty simple.

The problem is, when two people enter into an intense relationship, things are NEVER that simple.  If you knew my slave you’d understand!  Don’t get me wrong, I own my properties body and mind.  Her talent, intelligence, and time is a tool of my will.  But there is much more to a person than a body and mind.

In a workshop a few years back a person asked how they should intervene.  How they could help a friend in trouble.  A friend of theirs was a slave with a substantial amount of wealth and it was being recklessly spent and taken by their Mistress.  Money.  It’s not the mind or body of the slave but it is most certainly a means to self determination.  When a  Master controls the a slave’s access to money it influences almost everything they can do and say outside of the relationship.  Controlling access to money is a tool of abusers.

I don’t mean to imply that you shouldn’t discuss controlling your slave’s financial assets or that doing so makes you an abuser, I am just pointing out when you are entering into those initial discussion of a consensual power exchange that finances are an area worthy of treating as a discussion separate from the body and mind.  A second area if you will. Here is something interesting to consider.  Does your slave care more about turning over their body and mind, or a lifetime of financial progress?  What does that mean?  Shouldn’t your life be more important?  But then, if you give up a lifetime of financial gain, does that devalue the life?  Interesting stuff.  Discuss it.

I actually count four areas of discussion when entering into a CNC  (consensual non-consent) or TPE ( total power exchange).  The first was body and mind which is a simple, given understanding of total slavery.   The second was finances, the third is children.  When children come into the negotiations, and possibly a ex-significant-other who has a legal right to some of the children’s well being,  then this is an area of discussion too.  Not that a child is a possession of the slave and therefore by extension property of the property, but because a parent who is a slave is transferring all decision making authority to the Master or Mistress and this is therefore an area worthy of discussion.

And that brings us to the fourth area.  Maybe you are an atheist, or agnostic, Christian, spiritualist, wiccan, or are one with the force.  My point is that often our passion and beliefs are tied together in strong ways.  Being a Master or Mistress does not mean that you need to be the spiritual leader for your slave, or force being an atheist on them – though you could if consented to.  A persons soul is worthy of discussion.   If you desire to direct the soul of another to the truth as you believe, this is the fourth and final area worthy of discussion.

In one collaring ceremony I attended, the Master took possession of the slave – body, mind, and soul.  I cringed.  I do not believe in taking possession of souls, but I do believe myself extremely qualified to lead my slave and I towards enlightenment.  But that’s my person belief, and one my property entrusts into my care.  I don’t know if the Master in the collaring ceremony gave as much thought as I would give to a phrase like that.

So there you have it boys and girls.  Another shiny new blog in the can.  Hope you like it in the can!  Hmmm  porn humor!  Let’s end on a better note than that.  Here’s a little X quote to chew on.

I can not create a minute, even the minutes of my life belong to a higher force. The only thing I truly own, are my choices. ~Xtac quote

Uncommon Currency

If you are just looking for what uncommon currency is, skip to the second half of this piece.  Tonight, I start with a quote

“It takes more strength to be a slave than a Master. You may disagree but it is the slave who demonstrates strength and courage with their commitment to an uncommon currency; the currency of trust, honesty, and love” ~Xtac quote

I’ve been sucked into the debate, does the slave really have all the control.  Let’s not go there.  Its kind of a chicken or egg came first thing.  This quote is not about that debate, its about strength, not control.  Its about the uncommon currency that makes equitable, our peculiar lifestyle.

I’ll avoid saying lifestyle choice, because for some of us power exchange might as well be the air we breath.  I’ve sometimes referred to my lifestyle as an “orientation”.  For those of us that need this and are an empty vessel without it, “orientation” feels so much more correct than just a “choice”.  But I digress.

To those outside the window looking in, they see a person giving up all that are and have for another.  In a very real sense, a Master receives tangible benefits that those looking on can readily see.  It is the peculiar nature of some things, like love, that only those in it can see the value that exists between them.   But these things we exchange are very real to us, a palpable thing that touches us deep inside.

And how could it be any other way?  A slave will make of themselves a possession. Their body, mind and will becomes an extension of the will of the Master or Mistress they serve.  My slave may not even say “My Master” for she can not even own that.  There is no boundary, no privacy, no buffer, no space, in which to retreat.  It’s a raw, open connection so deep as to be scary.  Some slaves face a moment of fear, a sense that their identity is slipping away.  With management, it becomes a zen thing, living in the moment, alive with the joy of the interaction that is now.

This is why I say that being a slave takes more strength.  It is the commitment to pursue the incredibly big things in small moments that takes your breath away.  It is the faith that when we are human and those moments seem infinitely far away, that the person you trust and have entrusted with all that you are will find the way to bring you back to your happy place.

Absolutes are concepts for fools and I don’t believe that I am such a fool as to believe that one statement about the nature of a thing can capture all people or all things.  But in a general way though this quote is true and there are moments when you see and recognize that truth in beautiful epiphany.


Now..  let us dive deeper into uncommon currency itself.. what it means.  I think you can get a better sense of where I am headed with this term, in my My core values and beliefs piece, but in a nutshell.

What I am saying is that a Master and slave relationship is both unequal AND equitable.  A Master has all possessions and power and yet the relationship is equal in terms of what is exchanged because of our values..what we place value on.. our currency of exchange.  If we think of an exchange in nilla terms, the M/s relation is NOT equitable.  But because we crave either to dominate or be dominated, our personal values make it equitable.

And here is a thing..because uncommon currency is so very personal, you can’t judge another, even if you are kinky.  You need to understand that only two people in a relationship, can understand themselves if the currency of exchange, that which they desire most, is being met.  Yes, we are a breed apart, but I think a better breed because we have vast diversity, deep thinking about what that means, and respect for personal values that goes much farther in its way of looking at things.


So my friends, acquaintances, and playmates past and future, let us raise a toast and warm our hearts for those that go into that place with no road map, presenting all that they are as a canvas on which a Master may create a masterpiece.   It takes strength to place such trust in another and to hold fast to the uncommon currency that comes of it.