I’ve been going on and on about my boot fetish for almost a year now, and some of you non-fetish readers (if there are any) might be wondering how this severe fetish came about. I’m wondering, too. I like my fetish. I like to think about it and explore its background. I’m fascinated by the psychology of fetishism, and not just because I am a fetishist.

There are, of course, lots of theories about the genesis of fetishism: a displacement of the penis to the woman, imprinting or positive reinforcement from one intense childhood experience, flight from intimacy. Interestingly, most fetishes either cover the salient parts of a woman’s body (panties) or are as far away from the cradle of Venus as is possible (shoes, feet, boots; with hair at the other end).

I am not a Freudian, nor do I think that one intense behavioral experience can freeze one’s whole sexuality (if so, one could have a fetish for chocolate, napkins, any thousand of things that one happened to be looking at or thinking about while having an orgasm). And I happen to think that far from being a flight from intimacy, a fetish allows a complicated, neurotic, frightened, repressed person (such as myself) to have intimacy of a sort, anyway. Sexuality must be expressed. In that amiable war-zone we call the mind, a fetish is one avenue of circumventing the border patrol of repression.

In my case, I was an aficionado of bondage and handcuffs from kidhood. I used to get a charge out of seeing handcuffs in movies, like to tie myself up for hours and fantasize various humiliations and defeats at the hands of girls. (I still like handcuffs, and nowadays even think a woman looks quite beautiful with the steel bracelets slapped on her wrists.) When I was a sophomore in high school, I was having a masturbation session and reading an article in Playboy about tabloid magazines, which were much more sexual and violent in those days than the gossip tabs of today. My memory is skimpy about this (haven’t been able to dig up the issue or article, though I’m still looking), but among the many passages from tabs quoted in the article was a letter published in a sex oriented Canadian paper. It was signed "Happy Boot Slave" and recounted the writer’s experiences in a concentration camp.

"For many the camps were a terrible experience," it began ridiculously (I am quoting from memory), "but for me it was heavenly." The writer explains how he had to tend to his Nazi mistresses' boots at all times, polishing and licking, and keeping his eyes down and his body below the level of their boots. This little passage got me so hot that I had the best orgasm of my fledgling masturbatory career. From that moment on, I was a boot fetishist, noting all the boots at school, in the media, in magazines.

Curious how it could erupt so suddenly, I spent much time reflecting on the roots of this boot fetish, and remembered such precursors as a book in my family library (The Squaw Man) that had a picture of a booted woman that I used to stare at, with unfathomable fascination, for hours. I remembered boots owned by little girls in the neighborhood. I remember loving The Avengers (which also featured big watches, another fetish), and Catwoman in Batman.

Its appearance may have been sudden, but the groundwork for this eruption of passion for boots had been laid over years, through family and friends, and most importantly, the media. And for that, I am grateful.

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