Saturday, April 10, 2021

Cirque du Earth 2021: A Virtual Convention Weekend Fundraiser June 4-6th

 


Ladies, Gentlemen, Enbies, and everything in between or out, come one, come all to the marvelous, spectacular, phenomenal Cirque du Earth! A first of its kind multi-platform virtual conference you can experience right in your very own living room! Hosted on AirMeet via Dating Kinky and Second Life. 

Join us for a three ring circus of education where you choose what you want to learn! 

Anomaly of Arkansas and House of Yue Present:


Cirque du Earth: A Virtual Weekend Convention Extravaganza!


Sponsored by Dating Kinky and Devyn Stone


Experience mind-blowing classes!


  • Magic of Queerness, Queerness of Magic
  • Unlearning Toxic Masculinity
  • Within a Stone’s Throw: Short Distance and Authority-Transfer Dynamic
  • Evil Queens are Just Princesses who Never Got Saved
  • But I Can't! Communicating Obstacles in Power Dynamic Relationships
  • Fire Play Safety
  • Sexual Narratives: Role Play for Perverts
  • Blocks to Listening - Communication 103
  • Kink and DND
  • Marketing and Business Consulting for Kink/Adult Themed Businesses
  • Gender Reveal: An Exploratory Introduction to Gender and Sexuality
And many many more!

Don’t miss these terrific panels!


  • LGBTQIA+ POC Panel
  • Poly Dynamic Communications Panel
  • Trans Allyship Panel
  • Practical Application Roundtable - Accessible Kink
  • Podcast Roundtable - feat. LadyDaddy, KinkyCast, Nookie Notes, Rain De Grey

Fabulous social events!


  • Cigar Socials
  • Trans/Queer Social Space
  • Craft Time
  • Dark and Rainbow Littles Social Spaces
  • Aftercare Social
  • Speed Networking

And mesmerizing performances!


  • Belly Dance
  • Fire Flow
  • Music
  • Dramatic Performances
and more!

JUNE 4TH - 6TH 2021

All times listed are in CST


Ticket info in text format located in event listing linked above.


Check out the event listing for a list of all the speakers, performers, vendors, and classes. Follow @AnomalyKink on Instagram and Twitter,  @Anomaly_Arkansas on Fetlife, or Anomaly of Arkansas on Facebook for updates and upcoming events. 


Tuesday, April 6, 2021

Jawari: Researching Female Slavery in Islamic History

Apologies to all of my faithful readers for the delays in posting new segments of Star Talker. I have been messing around with a follow up called Star Fighter revolving around a lesbian couple. I have also jumped headfirst down a very expensive research rabbit hole. 

As many of you are likely aware, I am a student of Egyptian dance. This interest has also led to an interest in studying Egyptian culture, which pairs nicely with my Anthropology minor from university. 

The results of my late night nerd shopping.

One of the key figures in the history of Egyptian female performative dance is the Almeh (pl. Awalim). The Awalim were female performers, highly educated in the arts, who performed for rich and upper class households. They were well-versed in poetry, the playing of musical instruments, singing, dancing, and the etiquette of femininity. 

The origin of the Awalim isn’t known for certain, which makes sense, as free women are not often the subject of historical writers within Islamic history. However, during a workshop I took this past month with Nada El Masriya, it was suggested that the Awalim potentially evolved from the jawari (s. jariya), slave courtesans known for their poetry and singing who figure prominently within important historical works such as the Kitab Al-Aghani (كتاب الأغاني) (The Book of Songs) by Abu al-Faraj al-Isfahani. 

Well, you can bet I latched onto that little tidbit with a ferocity. I mean, my interest in slavery is what sparked my interest in belly dance to begin with, and I have often combined the two in the classes I have presented for my local community. Previously, I had only been aware of the concept of the odalisque, which I have talked about on here numerous times. But, it can be hard to find research on odalisques that isn’t colored by orientalism. As well as the fact that the writers of the time were majority men, who were not allowed within the spaces in which odalisques existed. 

This thing cost over $100. :(

I am finding, however, that the jawari figure more prominently in Islamic history due to their presence within the male arena.

I. Am. Excited.

It took a bit of digging to find the sources, but I have thus far spent an absurd amount of money for a broke girl such as myself on academic works to do more research into this subject.

Why are scholarly publications so fucking expensive? Aaggghhh. I need a sugar daddy just to fund research, I swear. And if anyone can find an English translation of the Kitab Al-Aghani, please hit me up. 

The goal of this, besides being an abject nerd, is to develop a class to present at FROST 2021 this December. What form will that class take? I don’t know yet. I’m going to be doing research for a while, but it will have lots of delicious history and nerdy goodness. 

I believe the conference will be virtual, so if you are at all interested in potentially attending, follow @AnomalyKink on twitter and instagram, @Anomaly_Arkansas on Fetlife, or Anomaly of Arkansas on Facebook for updates on upcoming events. 

And if you’re interested in funding my research? I mean, I won’t stop you. 



Wicked Wednesday

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Star Talker: Part 37: Dance with Me



Selima

The dums and taks of a darbukka drum filled the air, accentuating the sweeping melodies of the violin and the nay flute. I began to sway with the music, adding little accents as the staccato plucking of oud strings joined the ensemble. I could feel Rha’han’s eyes on me as I let the music move me. I kept my eyes closed for a few moments, just taking in the music, the first I’d heard since being taken. The music began to swell, and I opened my eyes just as the dancer emerged from a curtained doorway.  

She swept elegantly into the room, a sheer silver silk veil clutched delicately between her fingers. The belt and bra she wore were so encrusted with jewels, her hips and chest seemed to emanate their own light as she moved. Her skirt was a series of red and silver silk scarves, which seemed to also have tiny glittering stones decorating the hems. A gem sparkled in her navel, stark against her chestnut skin. Her ankles and wrists were covered in shimmering bells and bangles that jingled with each step she took. She spun and swayed, the veil and her auburn curls flying out behind her as she did so. 

I watched in silent fascination, continuing to sway with the music, entranced by her movements. It had been so very long since I danced last, even longer since I’d seen a dancer perform in person. I found myself softly singing the words to the familiar songs of my childhood, although the music playing was purely instrumental. The familiar melodies of Um Kulsoum, Warda, and Dr. Samy Farag filled the air. Ancient melodies by now, but still beautiful and timeless. I soon forgot about the dancer entirely, losing myself in my own little dance in my seat. I was still undulating through a baladi taqsim when a hand appeared in front of me. 

I looked up into the strangely feline eyes of the dancer, beaming down at me with a fanged smile. 

Arqus maei,” she said, the words sounding a bit strange around her fangs. 

Dance with me.

I took the hand of the dancer and rose to my feet. It took a moment to shake off the awe of seeing one of my mother’s people for the first time in over fifteen years. The Basti were not permitted to leave New Giza, yet here one was, pulling me into the dance floor, a knowing look in her brilliant eyes. She kept her eyes on me as her hips began to move again, sliding back into the baladi with little effort. Her hips began to circle and sweep into luscious figure eights, her belly rolling with the rise and fall of the accordion. I settled back into the melody myself. My movements were both bigger yet more subtle than hers. I had to compensate for my thicker body, but I lacked the dramatic flare of a dancer trained for the stage. I fell into the accents of the sekkat, little chest lifts and hip bumps to match the drum.

It was in the maqsoum that we found our synchronicity. We began to move together, taking almost imperceptible cues from each other. It was as if we’d been dancing together for years, this moment but one in a thousand of perfectly choreographed segments. The music swelled into the rapid ingerara and we sped up to match it. Turns and spins and shimmies, one after the other, until thought disappeared into rhythm and movement. Then we were spinning in the crescendo, round and round, until the world changed in a swirl of silk, and I found myself in a dim hallway, alone with the dancer.

She pulled me down the narrow hallway, pushing through a door in the back. We spilled into a smallish room, filled with costumes and vanity covered in makeup. She sat me down on the little stool in front of the vanity and smiled at me. She began to speak, and for the first time in years, I did not understand. I blinked at her, wide-eyed, frustrated at my lack of comprehension. She realized quickly, a sad, almost bitter expression crossing her face.

“Of course,” she said, switching back to Arabic. “You would not know our tongue. They never do teach the halflings out of fear.” She leaned against a dresser and looked down. “I am sorry for dragging you back here without warning, but I have not seen one of my kind since I left Tarwal with the Sayida.”

“Tarwal?”

The dancer pursed her lips. “Your father’s people call it New Giza, but it is Tarwal. It has always been Tarwal and will always be Tarwal. We are the Tarwalakh, not the Basti. My name is Damak.”

“I thought the Bas--Tarwalakh--were not allowed to leave the planet?”

Damak got up and went to the door, peering outside it for anyone listening. She shut it quietly, and moved deeper into the room between racks of costumes and sat in the floor. She beckoned me to come sit near her. She kept her voice low when she answered.

“It is true. We are not allowed to leave, but,” she glanced nervously at the door again, “Zeinab and I are...close.” She gave a pointed look. “When her father sold her to the Sayid, she fought very hard to have me go with her. They forbade it, of course, but with the help of the Sayid, they smuggled me out.”

Damak fiddled absently with one of the scarves making up her skirt. “They tried to free me, you know. To allow me to marry them. But it was not possible. I saw you out there with one of them. I saw your ears and your eyes, and I knew you were Tarwalakh, even if they do not. I had to tell you. Warn you.”  

She grabbed my shoulders, shaking her head sadly. “Our kind cannot breed with them.” 




Wicked Wednesday

Thursday, February 4, 2021

Star Talker Character Models!

So, I'm a nerd and I've been watching Critical Role a lot lately, and thus found Hero Forge. Which has allowed me to make mockups of characters from the story. They're not exact depictions, but it was fun making them. I hope you enjoy! 

 



Here is an estimation of Rha'han. The horns aren't quite right and I can't add the gold shimmer to the skin, but I think he looks pretty cool for a D&D miniature. 




I'm not too fond of this one, plus the arms on the models are too big, but here's a sort of version of her. The character designer doesn't have the right eye color, so I chose blue feline to give the sort of effect her eyes have. Here ears are slightly pointed because of her mixed species. 



I present to you, the Shara of the Klotharan Empire, Amrach Malikar of the Horned Crown! I really like the way this one looks. He doesn't have the salt and pepper hair, or the horn jewelry, but I really like the way this one looks.


Now I'm going to throw some characters at you that have only been mentioned but have not yet shown up. 



His Highness, the Ambassador, Fahim Ashrad Malikar, father of Rha'han, brother of Amrach, and benefactor of Selima. I really like the way this one looks too. 


This character will appear in the next segment of Star Talker. She is of the same species as Selima's mother.



Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Star Talker: Part 36: Demon Spawn






The server returned carrying a platter of kofta, ful medames, couscous, and more pita bread. I piled a bit of each onto my plate, feeling a bit more settled after listening to Rha’han’s history.

“How did you end up on Lo’Rah, then?” I said, taking a bite of kofta. It was both familiar and not. I had had kofta before, but this was likely made from the meat of a native animal rather than any animal I knew.

Rha’han filled his own plate before continuing. “When I was born, I was hailed as an incarnation of a god called Vishnu because of my four arms and gold dusted skin.” 

I nodded. “I’m familiar with Vishnu.”

He took a bite of food. “Right. Well, Lo’Rahni babies don’t look much different from human ones at birth, aside from the extra arms. Lo’Rahni also aren’t well known outside of the diplomatic summits, or weren’t, anyway. My mother was hailed as the bearer of a god.” He gestured broadly with his hands, affecting an imperious tone. 

“We were given a nice house and all the material goods we might need. Much of my early childhood was spent being taught by priests and listening to my mother tell stories about my father, the great Raja from beyond the stars who gifted her with a child. I think she believed my father was an avatar of Vishnu.” He took a bite of his food, a slight frown creasing his brow. 

“When I was about seven, I suppose, my horns started growing in. It concerned the priests. They began to think I was a demon’s spawn instead of a godchild. They wanted to kill me.” A sadness creeped into his eyes then, as if it were something he had not thought about in a long time. “So she left to find a way to contact her old employer. By the time she found him, my horns had grown in enough that it was obvious enough who had fathered me. The diplomat knew I was neither god nor demon, just the simple byblow of a careless prince who gave little thought for the women he used.”

He snorted. “It’s a wonder really, that I’m the only one. I assume I’m the only one, anyway. I think he usually dallies with women he can’t actually breed with.” He stabbed at the kofta with a fork. “The diplomat got in contact with the embassy here, trying to get a hold of my father to, you know, let him know I existed. He...did not want to have anything to do with me, his marriage being somewhat strained as it was. But Amrach was there when he received the news...and the photos. Hard to deny me when I looked identical to Amrach as a child.”

He looked up at me with a sad smile. “I am here by the grace of my uncle and whatever god you believe is watching. Ta’riima has never quite gotten over the fact that I’m Ashrad’s first born, even if I am illegitimate. She has never wanted to so much as look at me. I was basically kept out of sight with the servants and slaves until I was old enough to put in the barracks for military schooling.”

“And your name?”

“Oh, that. It was changed when I was registered as a Klotharan citizen to be more...well...Klotharan. It wasn’t too hard to get used to. They aren’t that different.” 

He seemed not to care about it, but I wondered if that was true. I had also been ripped away from everything I knew at a young age, by the same man, even. But he hadn’t taken my name from me. I had the faintest memory of him trying, but a boy named Ka’iir, my only real friend on the ship, had said he liked my name, and Ashrad had dropped the subject. 

“Do you know anyone named Ka’iir?” I asked, wondering what had become of the boy I’d once known. 

Rha’han stiffened, the cup of tea freezing halfway to his lips. “I do,” he said carefully. “Why do you ask?”

“You talking about your name change just made me remember my time on the ship. Ka’iir and I used to play together when we managed to hide from the tutors.” I noticed his jaw tense up, as if he were grinding his teeth.

He carefully set his cup down, licking his lips with seeming reluctance. “Ka’iir is my eldest younger brother.” 

“Oh! That’s good. I can see how he’s doing then. I’ve never had brothers before. Perhaps I can steal yours.” I flashed him a benign smile. He relaxed noticeably, but I could still see a bit of tension in his jaw. 

I took a bite of the kofta, watching him carefully as I chewed. “So, your mother tongue is Hindi?”

He blinked, seemingly surprised by the change of subject. “Um, no. Bengali, actually.”

“Really? I don’t speak that one. Can you teach me?”

His eyebrows rose. “Uh, I really haven’t had much reason to speak it for the last few decades, so I’m sure I’m a bit rusty. I do have a few books in my study written in it though, so I suppose I could attempt to walk you through them.”

“Wonderful!” I said, genuinely excited. “It’s been a couple years since I’ve had the opportunity to play with a new language.”

Rha’han opened his mouth to speak, but his words were cut off by the sudden sound of music filling the restaurant.




Wicked Wednesday