Joelle asked me if I would write a post on Figging and so here I am, happily approaching a topic which is fairly new to me but intriguing all the same. I'm actually not even sure how we got to talking about figging anymore - I mean, how does it come up in conversation, right? Oh, I was also going to research the use of nettles in BDSM play but haven't had a chance yet so if any of you know about that, please share with me, will you?
First the disclaimer - I am not an expert, nor do I pretend to be, but I will happily share what I've learned. That said, I'll start with a little history. We'll get the boring bit out of the way fast J
This comes right out of Wikipedia (look up gingering) and you know that's always accurate. An 1811 dictionary states: "to feague a horse is to put ginger up a horse’s fundament, and formerly, as it is said, a live eel, to make him lively and carry his tail well. It is said, a forfeit is incurred by any horse-dealer’s servant, who shall show a horse without first feaguing him." Ginger is an irritant, and when administered to a horse, the horse will carry its tail high and generally act somewhat restless and more lively. In the past, the purpose was often to make an older horse behave like one that was younger, or to temporarily liven up a sick or weakened animal.
But I’m not going to talk about horses here.
There was some discussion that in Victorian days, girls that were to be caned sometimes had a ginger root inserted into the anus to keep them from clenching their buttocks during punishment. The ginger root, when inserted, causes a stinging sensation that lasts about twenty minutes. When the buttocks are squeezed, it releases more of its juices, causing even greater discomfort and thus forcing the recipient of the cane strokes to relax her bottom and take her punishment. Not sure how true it is, but definitely an interesting visual.
I've experienced it once or twice myself but I have a fairly high pain tolerance and have to say I find it somewhat pleasurable. And it's not just the physical aspect for me: it's the psychological.
In "Taught to Kneel" (Kindle edition), as a part of Gabrielle's punishment, Julian has Gabrielle bend over and present her bottom to him. He then inserts the ginger root into her bottom - safely of course - carved so it won't disappear in there. That would kind of take the sexy right out of things. Anyhow, to present yourself in so vulnerable a position and have someone insert the root (or anything else for that matter) inside your bottom is humiliating. It gives someone power over you and for me, this is what's sexy about figging. I feel like I want to talk about this part of things, about why the idea of submitting like this to someone makes my belly feel all funny, and other things feel all warm, but I think that's another post.
So how do you prepare the ginger? Well, first go buy some at the local supermarket. The fresher the better and the more solid and bigger the piece the better. Keep it in the fridge until you're ready to use it. To prepare it, peel the root and carve it in the shape of a butt plug where the sphincter will lock around the tapered portion of the plug. Very important - truly. Rinse the ginger to get all the peel off and make sure the tip is nicely rounded. You can keep it in the fridge if you're not going to use it right away, but really, who's that organized?
Once you're ready to use it, have the recipient take the position (very nice all by itself for both parties). Don't use any lubricant as it will create a barrier so that the juices of the ginger won't be able to work their stingy magic. Insert carefully and watch for a few moments. When the wiggling begins, well, it's working. Have fun.
You can also use a small round of ginger (peeled again) at the clitoris or a similarly carved one inside the vagina, but for me, figging is something reserved for when a little humiliation is called for.
I'm pretty sure this isn't new to most of you, but if it is, I hope I've intrigued you to try it. I'd love to hear comments and thoughts on figging both regarding the physical sensations and the mental aspects of this practice. The BDSM Group over at Goodreads has an active discussion going on about this which is interesting to have a peek at. And like I said above, if you know anything about nettles, I'd love to learn myself.
And from Joelle- while I'm sure the pictures might be interesting, please no pictures of pretty female asses with ginger stuck up them- at not in the comments section :D. I'm not entirely sure if that's within the rules for blogspot lol.