Shanell Verandez: The Creative Director of Drinks

Shanell Verandez at the bar Rittenhouse Grill Philadelphia wearing a KVaughn dress winter collection 2022
Shanell Verandez at the bar, Rittenhouse Grill, Philadelphia wearing  KVaughn, Winter collection 2022.

Text by Shanell Verandez, Copyright 2022

.

The Creative Director of Drinks

.

I proclaim myself the “Creative Director of Drinks, because not only do I consider myself as a mixologist, but more of an Artist. As a bartender a.k.a mixologist a.k.a “C.D.O.D”, I am directing people’s vibes with my creative elixirs I refer to as “liquid babies” that will be sure to delight your senses! I am that creative…I have stirring it up behind the bar since 1996. Now back to the present, ‘Tis the season to be Jolly! What a better way to introduce some of my holiday “liquid babies” edition? Here are three of my favs to pop up the holidays! Cheers!
 
Holidaze Pop
This is a nice, crisp, slightly sweet flavor to soothe the soul.
         Grand Mariner (2ozs.)
         Mango or Pineapple juice (1 oz.)
         Dry Brut Champagne 
          Orange slice
Build Grand Marnier, mango or pineapple juice in a flute glass, then balance champagne. Garnish with an orange slice and enjoy!
 
Black Kiss
This liquid baby is for the baby is for the bold daredevil. These are the people ready to start the new year now! It is a sweet, bold blackberry saturated cocktail with an orange sage bourbon finish.
                      Bourbon (2 ozs.)
                     Cointreau (1/2 oz)
                      Simple syrup (3/4 oz)
                      3 blackberries 
                      1 sage leaf
                      Orange peel
 
Silk Martini 
             Ciroc Coconut vodka (2ozs)
              Kahlua(3/4 oz)
             Frangelica(1/3oz)
              Half/ Half cream
             Chocolate syrup 
              Coconut flakes 
In a 16 oz glass mixer, fill with ice, than mix vodka, kahlua, frangelica and cream together, shake and pour into a frosted martini glass garnished with chocolate syrup inside and top with a sprinkle of coconut flakes… Enjoy!
          
  This liquid baby holds a special place in my heart, I have been shaking this cocktail since 2005, when I entered this one in an bartending competition and won first place. It is a sweet, creamy chocolate, coconut twist paradise that will make you forget that ol’ egg nog! Heck…
All three liquid babies will make you even forget that ol’ mistletoe too! ‘It’s the season from Yours Truly Behind the Bar💋
.
Shanell Verandez behind the bar at Rittenhouse Grill Philadelphia
Shanell’s wearing KVaughn Winter Collection. Photo: Tony Ward, Copyright 2022

.

To access additional articles by Shanell Verandez, click herehttps://tonywarderotica.com/shanell-verandez-the-sexibeast/

A.H. Scott: Night, Angel

Portrait of young woman with black long hair wearing sheer nightgown
Photo: Tony Ward, Copyright 2022

Poetry by A.H. Scott, Copyright 2022

.

Night, Angel

.

Call me Serenity

With charm to disarm, here I am for you

None of what we long for comes out of the air so thin

Casting a spell

You know me so well

I move through the night ever so sprite

Now, here I am with you

Something it was, something it is

Back when our eyes met for the first time, there was a delicious reason and parallel rhyme

Yeah, it’s the way she moves

Slick glide of mercury across the floor she is

Knock at her pad came after dark

Under his arm was a white box with a bow

Oh, I’m a curious woman who wants to know

What could it be that he brought for me?

A few suppers here and there is beyond a simple blind date that is ever so rare

Getting to know one another has amplified my horizons in such varied ways

Oh, a tender gentleman puts me in a haze

But, I’m not silly to think that it’s only my visual that puts a guy like him on the brink

I’ve got that magic inside of me that illuminates in special ways

Soft melody plays

Not a cover-up is this gift, as my body slowly shifts within it

Delicate lace bow I release in a sensual tease with thumb and index finger is a breeze

His hands cradle gossamer the color of night upon my flesh, as I offer a humble sigh

My bedroom is my sanctuary and we are here together

Fragrant aroma of cherry blossom fills the air

As you hold me in those strong arms that are so dear, I nibble and whisper gently in your ear

You know me

Yes, I know her

She is tranquility that I never thought I would find

I am the man who she treats ever so kind

Tender words from those lips and actions that are mutual fascination is the magic we share

Gossamer vanishes to the floor

I want her more and more

Hardening as I do, it is when I’m with her that there is that lustful follow through

Soft hands of mine touch along his expanded crotch

Oh God, I want him inside of me so much

I guess I am a woman of a blissful spell, cuz’ I can get such a sexy man to swell

Not tooting my own horn, but there’s going to be more than one grind between us from after midnight to the coming dawn

Hands make their moves with rapid speed

This night is going well, indeed

Blush upon my lips is like a siren song

I picked up on her signs, as on the bed we climbed

She below me and my flesh entering slowly at first

Deeper and deeper we are making our connection with such untamed thirst

Sensuality’s spring is about to burst

Back and forth, I take that ride upon him

Feelin’ good, feelin’ groovy

Damn, this man is really knowin’ me now

Her body flourishes with every point of contact we make, as I am about to make a fast break

We hold onto each other, as what comes about comes

Both of us are heady in our passion as the room seems to spin around our bodies in a mystical way

As if we are imbued with the essence of falling leaves, we listlessly lay upon the bed

Strands of my raven hair are slightly entangled through my fingers as I touch his chest and rest my head against it

I hear his heart beating like a snare drum

Wow, what a torrid duo we’ve become

Silently I wonder if he thinks I was just a bit too wild

Midnight holds magic in ways neither needed to voice

Being with her was a delightfully humbling choice

I lifted my head from off his chest, kissed him and was lost in a sweet caress

As I look at your softness, your feathers are invisible to most who gaze at the woman before my eyes

Yet, I see them as I look at you….

She tenderly smiles, “I know this is true”

He whispered, “Night, angel….”

.

About The Author: A.H. Scott is a poet based in New York City and senior contributor to Tony Ward’s blog.  For additional articles by A.H. Scott, click here: https://tonywarderotica.com/a-h-scott-wavelength/

A.H. Scott: A Second Look

white woman bound at the hands nude
Photo: Tony Ward, Copyright 2022

Poetry by A.H. Scott, Copyright 2022

.

A Second Look

.

A pinhole
A peephole
A spyglass fantasy unfolds
Vision widens as does the focus
Is it her fantasy of being kept and adored?
Is it his fantasy of being a source of security?
Bounds of trust
Trust of bounds
Am I being taken?
Am I being taught?
Am I the subject being sought?
Confiding in my captivation from the moment she and I first met
In her I see possibility
In her I see memory
Mutual trust is combined with lust
No one will know about what we explore
Well, maybe it might be one could be peeking through the peephole in that locked door
Caught in the moment
Upswept in the rush
Of this, that, and such
Consumed by enraptured titillation of unspoken thoughts
Self reflection is silence’s mistress, as I have learned in being with him
Relinquishing the reins of my own self control
He knows me now as my trepidation has vanished
She has graduated from cords of silk upon those wrists, to something more of my liking
Her skin so soft, I kiss her cheek ever so gently
Oh, his lips are like reassurance in wayward storm
Never would I have thought of this hideaway of hedonism would be located inside my dorm
Skin like white lily
Coolness of brass grommets from this leather chair are teasing my calves as I am situated here
All I am thinking about is what awaits me
Precision is that which I have come to know
Sandalwood scent fills the air
Cord of caution was snipped the moment this seductive suggestion passed his lips
I didn’t even think a wise man of letters would notice me
But, he did and our experiences together has been splendid
Blushing and bound
Here I am, found
Not like the original editions bound by leather on your shelf
I’m glad I have your attention only for myself
Whenever you call my name with that casual ease
I really perk up and want to please
Summer breeze replaced by autumn chill is nothing compared to my vulnerability’s thrill
Pleasing is pleasure
Pleasure is pleasing
I slip off the cord from around her wrists
She is eager to continue our tryst
Tape is slowly removed from those silent lips
Her smile exchanges the view from that dull grey with a pleasurable reddened hue
This swirl we share is beyond my desire’s hopes
Windmill of wonder is what I’ve been exposed to in learning the ropes
By the way, we can see you watching through that peephole
Was it good for you?
Because, it’s always good for us
Keep watching…..from afar
This is one door that is never left ajar
.
white woman having her mouth taped shut nude and bound
Photo: Tony Ward, Copyright 2022

.

About The Author: A.H. Scott is a poet based in New York City and senior contributor to Tony Ward’s blog. To access additional articles by Ms. Scott, click here: https://tonywarderotica.com/a-h-scott-nightcap/

Diana Desiderio: The Satanic Temple in Salem Mass

 

Text and Self Portraits by Diana Desiderio, Copyright 2022

.

The Satanic Temple in Salem Mass

.

Salem has always been a place I felt in my bones. A place that has the lore of young women bewitched and signing over their souls to the Dark Lord himself. September had approached so fast as it does every year. I got a wild hair and the availability to stay at the Satanic Temple had availability. I called one of my friends Roxy and recruited her for this amazing last minute get away. And why not; who wouldn’t want to live deliciously?

An 8 hour truck up to the New England area and just shy of the Spooky season tourists.

Once we had arrived at the satanic Temple, I instantly felt at home. Something no one will ever tell you about Satanist who belong to the Satanic Temple is; they don’t believe in the devil himself at all but that them using the symbol of Baphomet in all its glory is a symbol of triggering critical thinking. The mission of the Satanic Temple is to “encourage benevolence & empathy, reject tyrannical authority, advocate practical common sense, oppose injustice, and undertake noble pursuits.” 

The Satanic Temple has seven fundamental tenets:

  1. One should strive to act with compassion and empathy toward all creatures in accordance with reason.
  2. The struggle for justice is an ongoing and necessary pursuit that should prevail over laws and institutions.
  3. One’s body is inviolable, subject to one’s own will alone.
  4. The freedoms of others should be respected, including the freedom to offend. To willfully and unjustly encroach upon the freedoms of another is to forgo one’s own.
  5. Beliefs should conform to one’s best scientific understanding of the world. One should take care never to distort scientific facts to fit one’s beliefs.
  6. People are fallible. If one makes a mistake, one should do one’s best to rectify it and resolve any harm that might have been caused.
  7. Every tenet is a guiding principle designed to inspire nobility in action and thought. The spirit of compassion, wisdom, and justice should always prevail over the written or spoken word.

All of which I have always felt kindred too. Once we had checked in; we asked that if after the temple closed we were able to take photographs within the temple to use at our own discretion and they were more than happy to oblige. While we waited we waked around downtown Salem learning about the poor innocent women persecuted and accused of being witches to pacify the puritan settlers. Some hung by their necks from the hangman’s tree. Some were pressed with a heavy stone until they were crushed to death.

There was a very daunting feeling when walking around those areas especially after dark. We retreated back to the temple, and got to open the rooms and take full advantage of the interior of the throne room and the main hall where a 10’ statue of Baphomet sat in all its glory. In honor of the witches of Salem who sold their souls  while dancing nude in ceremony of the Dark Lord; we stripped down & I got to taking some amazing shots all on an iPhone no less. If you are ever interested in going, I would highly recommend it. Live deliciously and HAIL THYSELF.

About The Author: Diana Desiderio  is a motion picture production manager based in Philadelphia.

To access additional articles by Diana Desiderio, click here: https://tonyward.com/night-swim/

 

 

Kitchie Ohh: Beautifully Broken


Text by Kitchie Ohh, Copyright 2022

.

Photography by Tony Ward, Copyright 2022

.

Creative Director: KVaughn

.

Hair & Makeup: Michael Connor

.

Photography Assistant: Anthony Colagreco

.

BEAUTIFULLY BROKEN

.

Things happen all the time, life would sure be boring if that wasn’t the case. And because life isn’t always sunshine and rainbows, and is often completely unfair, sometimes those things that happen are awful. We get knocked down, made to feel worthless, hopeless. Beaten down by situations, other people’s cruelty, our own self-doubt and criticism. Cracked. Broken, irreparably shattered.

If you have never seen a piece of Japanese kintsugi pottery,  I urge you to stop reading and Google it; I’ll wait. Now that you’ve seen it, you’re probably wondering why I asked. Well, I find it beautiful, both as visual art and as a concept. The first time I ever saw it, I was awestruck.

The art of kintsugi takes bowls or other fine pottery pieces whose beauty was marred by chips, cracks, and breaks and uses precious metals to make them whole again. They become more valuable, more unique, in the mending than they were originally. Not viewed as less for the imperfection of being broken; but more because someone carefully and skillfully took the time to fix each and every crack. 

I can’t help but draw the parallel between this art form, myself, and the literally millions of other people who have faced down challenges and made it through, alive but not unscathed. We may not be alone in our experiences, but each of us is unique. The physical, mental and emotional pains we endure, as well as the scars those pains leave behind are ours. No two are exactly alike.  

What if we stopped hiding our scars and started to view them as what make us more? Not for simply having received them, but for the precious time, energy and effort we put into our healing. That is the art form. That is the gold, the silver, the platinum that brings all the shattered pieces back together and binds them together stronger than before. While the body may heal itself physically when injured without any conscious effort on our part, true healing and recovery is a choice. It is a process; an ongoing one. We have to care enough about ourselves to see and address all of our breaks, the old and the new. 

We have to let go of the old unbroken versions of ourselves and those who caused the damage. It is possible to forgive, but not forget. To move on, but remember. To be broken but not worthless. We are kintsugi; beautifully broken, remade stronger, perfect in our imperfection.  

.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Kitchie Ohh is a full-time professional fundraiser who has worked with a number of health and human services nonprofits for over the last 20 years, currently with a food-related Philadelphia nonprofit. She found her passion for modeling after a pinup-style photoshoot in 2013. Since then shes worked with many talented photographers, stylists, hair and makeup artists in a variety of styles.  She has been featured in -and on the covers of- multiple print and digital publications. Over the years she has branched out from pinup studio modeling to serve as a figure model for live sketching, walked a runway, and was part of two campaigns for local Philadelphia designer K. Vaughn. 

In addition to her food insecurity-related work, she has also volunteered with art, historical, and community organizations, and even on the events team of a local brewery, pre-pandemic.  

Youre just as likely to find her whipping up something deliciously plant-based in her kitchen or knitting a sweater as you are to find her on a photography set. Her motto is be both.” The model and the homemaker,  sultry and sweet, serious and silly. All the things, all at once.