I am not sure whether I think it is worthwhile to find out the ‘why’ of ‘dressing for pleasure’. It has genuinely worried me for the greater part of my life why we arc deviated from what is generally thought to be the normal way of life and sex. Why I should get a greater thrill while fornicating or making love play dressed in rubber, or bound helplessly in rubber, or leather, or whatever, than I would get merely romping naked beneath the sheets? I have come to realise that I would quite enjoy romping beneath the sheets, naked, with a woman who was completely aware of my ‘weaknesses’ rather than with one who was not aware. That is another way of saying, of course, that it is far better to make love to someone who understands every aspect of your being than merely with a tart. But in so many cases, one will find men who cannot seem to get down to the nitty-gritty in their communication with their wife. or loved one; perhaps it is the same vice versa too, (I wouldn’t know that).

It would be interesting to know ‘why rubber, why leather, why bondage’, but the answer will not be easy to find so it was a surprise to me to find Robert Henley’s ‘Fashion and Fetishism’ series in Atomage a little bit obtuse and difficult to follow – but I think I got the general sense in the end.

It is the small difficulties that one should concentrate on, not the root causes. What I mean is that the attraction that we men have to our ‘fetish’ (for want of a better word) goes further than its attraction to a woman. That is to say, we see more sensual attraction in our material than woman does, or is able to. That is a fact. But a woman, specially if she loves us, will be able to go along with nearly all the aspects of this fetish when it is concerned with a normal attraction between the man and the woman. But because of its fetishistic properties to the man, he is able to put up with, and actually enjoy its less comfortable aspects.

Some men positively enjoy the ‘wetness’ within the suit – or the fact that it sticks to the skin. Most women could only enjoy that feeling when it was directly connected with a sexual act. Men will enjoy the actual ‘dressing’ for pleasure, while women will only enjoy the dressed aspect.

All we have to do is to accept these things. We cannot fully understand why and the more we try to find the reason, the more elusive it seems to be. Although I would be the last to say that I have made a success of this philosophy, I think, nevertheless, that I can understand my (fetishism). The deeper the love and understanding between two people, the more the one will balance the other’s inhibitions, the more the true satisfaction will be reached, and the more spontaneous will be the actions to promote all the manifestations of this love.

Brave shows are put on, when colourful and attractive meetings are held as was reported in A32. Those who can afford it come in fabulous costumes, look gorgeous and probably thoroughly enjoy it as well. Many have probably lost any inhibitions that they may have had in the past; the nature of their lives probably affords them more time and there are less chores to interfere, but I honestly don’t think it has much to do with engineering, chemistry or physics. The equation might possibly be able to be expressed in these terms – but who wants to do that anyway?

I suppose that one thing that Robert Henley might be saying is that if the equation was understood in academic, terms, then perhaps the world would be better able to accept the wearing of our favourite materials in public, or that when a better understanding comes, then a more tolerant acceptance will come also. I wonder? Do you think that rubber, for example, is being worn more publicly than it was? It certainly is more acceptable than it was, surely, more people now recognise its sexual connotations, I think this will make it less acceptable publicly.

– D. C (Suffolk)