Feb 142016

I have always been a big fan of Valentine’s Day. It is strange I hate chocolate (yes I know that is weird lol ) and I am not big on flowers. I tell Sir every year that I do not need a showy act of love in the middle of February. I feel his love for me every day. The thing I really love about it is that Valentine’s Day is one to celebrate love in many different ways. Most of us know that Valentine’s Day is a mash up between both Christian and ancient Roman traditions. Now I am all for a good fertility festival, and a cool priest who gives it to the Emperor by marring people who have been outlawed to do so. This year however I found about a cool new version of this holiday.

In Japan there’ll be millions of men hoping to receive chocolate from girlfriends, wives, daughters, and the other women in their lives. Yep just the men you read that correctly. Valentine’s Day has a really neat twist there, women are expected to give chocolates to each of the men in her life, even the ones she doesn’t care for. There are two types of chocolates that girls give. First is Giri-Choco which roughly translates to obligation or duty chocolate. It is given to bosses, teachers, colleagues, and male friends. There is no romance with Giri-choco.

Next you have Honmei-choco, Honmei means favorite or best candidate. This is given to boyfriends, lovers, and husbands. It is considered to be true love chocolate. In Japanese culture effort is greatly valued. Many women in Japan prepare the Honmei-choco from scratch as too many it is not thought of as an act of true love to just buy them. Others will spend in the several hundred yen range on store bought Honmei-choco.

Pretty cool tradition and some fun trivia knowledge, hope you enjoy!

omedetou (Happy) Valentine’s Day!

Feb 012016

This Month we turn our member spotlight on Charles who is the current NLA Membership director.

What first brought you to NLA?
Beyond Vanilla 18 in 2008.

What is it about NLA that makes it feel like home to you?

A diverse community thanks to the inclusiveness of the group.

If pressed, I’d identify myself as…
A long time handcuff collector inspired by rope bondage.

Define what “Leather” is to you?
Kink with honor, respect and pride.

What are your top 3 Leather/kink passions?
Whips, chains, and last but not least handcuffs!

What are your top 3 Vanilla passions?
Trains, bicycles, and photography

What was your first experience with Leather?
Beyond Vanilla 18 in 2008.

What is your most memorable Leather moment?
The sense of discovery enjoyed at Beyond Vanilla 18 in 2008.

What do you feel NLA is doing well?
Building and educating a strong and respectable community.

What changes would you like to see in NLA?
Greater visibility and recruiting efforts.