Thursday, December 22, 2011

Sex Toy Review: Rock Star Janis

Eden Fantasys sex toys provided the Rock Star Janis vibrator to me for free, in exchange for an unbiased review. 
I started off pretty skeptical about the Janis. As I've explained before, I find battery-operated toys to be a bit annoying. They're great for travel, yes. But around my house? Batteries are expensive, need to be constantly changed, and produce a lot of environmentally unfriendly waste. Plus, when the batteries run down, damn, the vibrations get weak. So I grumbled and groaned my way to the store to get the two AAA batteries required for this toy. 
Also, I have this mental block that battery-operated vibrators just don't have the same power. 

Was I wrong? Yes. 

The Janis packs a punch. It gives my Hitachi wand (on the lower setting) a run for its money. That says something. The vibrations are solely concentrated in the rounded tip (further from the silver band), so it works fantastically well for clitoral stimulation. Personally, I get off much easier from clitoral stimulation; I can give or take g-spot stimulation, depending on my mood. But the shape of this toy is perfect for g-spot stimulation. It's not designed to go deep; if you're looking for that sensation, try a much longer toy with a bit more girth. It's designed to get shallow and dirty, to put pressure right into the urethral sponge. If the g-spot exists, which is pretty hotly debated, this is where it is. If you're interesting in squirting (female ejaculation), using a toy like, once you are already very aroused, this can be a great entryway into squirting. But don't expect it to do all the work :) It's an aid, not an easy way out.

A review on the sale page says this vibrator is "a little too loud for everyday use." I'm going to beg to differ. I didn't find the sound to be a problem. It's not extremely quiet, but manageable.  

I love the shape of the Janis. It feels great in my hand, it's light, and it's a fantastic almost velvet texture. The center silver band unscrews to insert the batteries, and the bottom of the "ball" base is a dial for adjusting the strength of the vibrations. I definitely prefer the dial to the switches; it's easier to fine-tune your power. The Janis is made of silicone, which is non-porous and phlalate-free, making it a very safe toy. I'd recommend using a condom on it for partner play, just in case. You definitely can't boil this vibrator, so using a condom is the absolute safest you can make this toy. 

The packaging is a clear box with Ed Hardy-like designs. I don't know who dreams up this stuff, but damn, the marketing for sex toys can be a bit ridiculous. I'm not sure I would have grabbed it if I saw it on a wall. 

Moral of the story: 4 out of 5 stars. If you want a battery-operated clitoral or g-spot vibrator that isn't going to break the bank, go for the Janis. It might become my favorite travel vibe. 

On a side note, I was talking to a heterosexual, cisgender male at a party the other night, who was complaining that his girlfriend has trouble getting off during penis-in-vagina intercourse. She needs clitoral stimulation, and she isn't getting it, clearly. In addition to a vibrating cock ring, I would suggest trying the Janis. Holding a bullet in place when you're fucking is a pain; they slip and slide. But this has just enough of a handle, it might work well. I told him that one of my favorite solutions to this problem is doggie style. It's a great position for g-spot stimulation and deep penetration, and she (in this case, anyway) can hold the vibrator to her clitorus for that extra stimulation. Brings me to my knees every time, no pun intended. 

Sunday, December 18, 2011


I feel like I've been on a fucking mind-blowing streak since I came back from San Francisco. All I do is win. I'm waiting for the fall out, for the other shoe to drop, but I'm totally ok with the fact that it hasn't yet.

My fantasy football team did a 180 and ended a long losing streak to make through TWO rounds of playoffs. I'm going to the fantasy Super Bowl for my league this weekend!

Doors opened for me to both of my career dreams. Even though they are both vague possibilities and include take many, many baby steps, I still have a sense of hope I didn't before.

I'm realizing I prefer to go by masculine pronouns and a masculinized name (which was given to me by a friend on accident). This isn't possible at work, and the vast majority of people will continue to call me by my birthname. But when my friends call me by my masculinized name, I get this jolt of excitement. I don't know how else to describe it. I've started using that name to introduce myself, though only in queer settings. It's scary. But I'm taking little steps, and trying to enjoy the moments when I'm not holding back.

I used some of the money I had saved up from advertising revenue on this blog to buy a new harness, a cock I've been wanting, and a packer. I created this blog for my own sexual exploration and renaissance, so it seems appropriate that it is helping me achieve that -- and explore gender -- in very concrete ways.

I had an amazing tarot card reading with a friend from the Boxes workshop via Skype. It was... illuminating. A lot of what we discussed and felt is the need for more purposeful exploration in my life. I need to break down some boundaries, push myself into places that scare me, and take the time to process -- or sometimes, just to do. I'm setting that as a goal for 2012 -- self-awareness. The reading helped me collect my thoughts and feel more focused about heading into a new year and closing out this one.

The Saints are doing fantastically well this year. Playoffs, here we come! LSU is going for a National Championship, too, so you can imagine what football season in New Orleans has been like.

My school semester ended very well. Looking forward to one last semester of classes before my thesis; I'm so over giving up my nights and feeling exhausted constantly.

I started a new "tradition" with a friend. It's a bit of a story, but the end result is this: each Christmas, we'll buy each other some slightly bizarre or unusual sex toy. In return, I expect her to write a review for this blog. I received the famous (infamous?) bacon lube, and you can find out about hers when I post the review :) I'll review the bacon lube, too, if you're curious. Choosing her gift was probably the most fun I had this year buying presents. It was definitely a challenge... and I hope to get myself one, too.

I've had a really wonderful time catching up with friends, going to a massive number of Holiday parties, cooking crazy dishes for Thanksgiving, drinking until 3am, and causing trouble. Singing Madonna at the top of my lungs with friends. Big potluck meals. Leg wrestling. Deep conversations about gender and kink. Shutting down parties and practicing my pool playing. It's been... so much fun.

Getting geared up for traveling to Colorado in 9 days, after the Dirty Birds/Saints game. Trying to wrap up everything at work, finish gift giving, and try to enjoy what little "break" from school and work that I get. I love this time of year. I hope everyone is enjoying the holiday season!

Even if the Sky is Falling Down

I've walked by the shop a number of times. It's a small storefront in the French Quarter, sandwiched between on one of the less notable side streets. The sign proclaiming "Erotic Cakes and Toys" takes up the whole front window. The shop always looked closed for some funny reason. But on this gorgeous, sunny Saturday I feel compelled to pull open the door and walk in. I'm honestly surprised when the door does open. It's a tiny shope, and there's a huge man behind the counter. He must be over 6'3 and sporting a massive beard. I greet him and walk in a circle through the store, examining the many sex toys lining the walls. It's a cheap collection, packed from floor to ceiling, mostly jelly toys, cock rings, low quality vibrators, very little of note. I probably wouldn't be interested in most anything they had.

"Are you looking for anything in particular?" The man has a very pleasant expression, almost curious. I wonder what he thinks when he sees me.

"I'm ok. Just looking." I pause for a minute to focus away from the wall, back toward him. "Can I ask you a weird question?"

He laughs. "There are no weird questions."

I think he is expecting some sort of sexual question, but that's not on my mind. "How did you get around the permitting and zoning?"

He does look a bit surprised at this question, but answers me quickly. "Well, we're technically a bakery. So it's a non-issue." I know the city enacted a ban on adult novelty stores in the French Quarter years ago, grandfathering in one locally owned leather/toy shop that caters primarily to gay men. There's another store, owned by Hustler, but I assumed they just paid someone off. His answer twists my mind in a different direction. Hustler sells half toys, half lingerie and clothing; maybe they are listed as an apparel business for permitting reasons. That's the secret: there's always a way around the rules, if you think creatively.

"That's an unusual question. Are you looking to open a store?"

I swallow the fear rising in my throat. I find it impossibly hard to express some of my most private and deeply held secrets to anyone, especially a stranger. I waiver on the answer. "Well...possibly. But I had assumed it would have to be outside the French Quarter."

His response floors me. "My wife and I are looking to sell this place in two years, if you're interested." I'm left speechless for a second, stumbling.

"Can I ask why?"

"She's finishing school, and we're not from here. We'd like to move back home."

"I'm not sure I'm equipped to run a bakery."

"Well, that's not necessarily required. You could do something else. But our profits from toys have increased significantly, so if that's what you're interested in... it's there."

We continue talking about the zoning and permitting, rent, their landlord, and other aspects of the business. I get his card, and express my serious interest. As I'm about to turn and walk out, an object hanging from the wall catches my eye. I walk across the shop, to the far side of the counter, and reach out to touch a black and white braided leather whip, about three feet long, hanging from the wall. It looks incredibly out of place in this shop, and I can't help the smile spreading across my face.

"I have this exact same whip. Got it in San Antonio at the Mexican Market. Can't find hand-braided leather like that for so cheap anywhere else."

It's his turn to smile. "A friend of mine gave that to me. It's not for sale." He gives me a look of recognition -- I'd swear it was one kinkster to another.

I feel like it's a sign, from somewhere. "I'll be back." I leave the shop, practically skipping down the street, thoughts swirling in my head. I have few dreams, but one of them definitely involves owning a sex shop.