‘The Iron Master Brotherhood’, which met for the first time earlier this year at Aldershot, is a support group for sufferers of Egocentrica Dominosis, or to laymen, ‘Old Masters Talking Shite Syndrome’.
The Group’s founder, Master Kurt Arroganz explains: “They’re
a fantastic bunch of guys and the Brotherhood has done a massive amount for
Masters all over
Published by Methuen, and now available in paperback, DVD, CD, VHS, Betamax, 33, 45 and 78, and wax cylinder, THE JOURNEY TO EGO, details the symptoms of Egocentica Dominosis, starting with the inability on the master’s part to unclench the buttocks. The sufferer starts to feel a compulsion to use welding equipment, cut down great trees, dynamite rock, and dig out the cellar. He develops a little cleft in his chin, and finds he can strike matches down it. He often finds he can only feel comfortable in tough hard-wearing shirts, made from sailcloth, and horsehair underpants.
Incapacity to hold a sensible conversation is an added complication. In most cases, the sufferer ignores all but the most testosterone-charged topics, and pursues them without wit or insight for hours at a time, even if nobody else is listening. They become incapable of talking about anything apart from how many slave girls they’ve found on the internet, their job testing explosives for ICI, and how many knives they own. Quite often they will explain extended treatises on how they have been disenfranchised by feminism, that Dworkin and Greer were paid to say all that Wimmins Rights stuff by the same masters as Philby, Blunt, Burgess, and McLean, and that most women are, after all, gagging for it.
Master Arroganz, himself a victim of ED, tells his own story, “I had a job in the post room at the Inland Revenue, everything was ahead of me, promotion, mortgage and my own set of collating thimbles.
Then I read this thing in a lad mag about there being all these fit birds gagging for it, who wanted blokes to tie ‘em up and slap ‘em around a bit; like in the Gor books. I took my girlfriend to Torture Garden, but she was more interested in being one of them dominat… er no, domanit… fuck me, one of them mistresses, which was bollocks, cause they’re all basically submissive, so I binned her because I had so many women wanting me to dominate them. I spent hundreds of pounds travelling all over the country. Fucking fantastic. One time I had a session with this fat bird in Leeds, and I had to drive all the way to Redditch in two hours to beat this skinny bird. But there was road works on the A628, so I swung off onto the B6105 towards Glossop and then got stuck in a tailback on the A54 where a low loader with an aircraft nosecone on the back had all the drivers rubbernecking. I’ll never forget that. Anyway that was why I only had ten minutes with the thin bird, so I whipped her over the dining room table (present from her mum, I gathered), fucked her up the arse, and wiped my nob on the curtains. Her husband went mental apparently; I think he’s still looking for me. After that I got the BMW, several semi-automatic weapons, and a massive number of military uniforms. I found that I could finance my collection by beating fat, old gay skinheads for money. One of them even said that I was a mercenary bastard once, so I incorporated it into my 24/7 persona; I told people I’d served in the SAS, the SBS, Two Para, and the Hard Bastard Squad, before going freelance and spending a couple of years killing and torturing people for BOSS in South Africa; I’d read about that in a book I read once.
I packed the job in, and pretended I worked for Lonhrow. I went down to the nearest quarry and dug out my own iron ore, smelted it myself, and cast all my own dungeon equipment. My slaves had to learn how to make chain in the back yard: If I decided an SM session included me going to the boozer, two hours in the bookies or a look at Razzle, then that was the session and that was SM. Birds, at the end of the day, respect one thing: Authority. I often had other stuff to do; Saturday afternoon is for going to football, and every weeknight from eleven pm until four in the morning is for pursuing endless, pointless, nitpicking arguments on the internet. You don’t have to understand it; it’s a bloke thing, just the same as making sure that you buy all the drinks when you’re really trying to impress another bloke, and then telling him all the uncomfortable personal details about your childhood and your hard man father who used to slash gays in public toilets in the 1970s; even if you ain’t got those kinds of skeletons in the closet, you can always make some up; I made up loads.
Then I took over the whole business of SM rights campaigning for a while, and started a massive war of personalities with every other master I knew. Whenever people objected to this, I used to go round to their houses and put abusive letters through their front door letterbox by hand. My slaves said that showed how brave I was. When there was no campaigning to do, I even went as far as shopping SMers to the News of the World, just to keep it in the public eye. Then one night, I overheard two slaves talking over a drink at my club. “He’s a fucking wanker,” one was saying. The other rejoined with, “What kind of silly bitch would submit to him? I mean look at that mullet, and that fucking stupid hat!”
I’d told them who I was, and about how long I’d been on The Scene, and about the time I told Tuppy Owens how to run the Sex Maniacs Ball, and how I’d had to change a fanbelt on the hard shoulder of the M6 before I realised that neither of them were slaves but a woman who’d come in to get 50p for a cup of tea, and Tracey the Bouncer and she kicked me in the groin and proceeded to crack three of my ribs, fracture my skull and rupture my pancreas. I sacked her once I’d got out of hospital, but what she’d said had got under my skin. So I got into an interminable treatise on the nature of Nitro-Glycerine, cos that felt good. Then my mother brought me the Professor’s book as a gift. I thought, “At last! Someone who really understands!” but as I read through it, I kept saying to myself, “That’s not me. I’m not that guy. I tell things like they are.”
Now, you’ll laugh when I tell you this, but I didn’t know, and I don’t like long books generally, but there was this one bit that said if you were, like, ill, people had to look after you, and give you preferential treatment, and do all the things you wanted done, and that was real Road to Damascus stuff: That’s the first time the book really spoke to me as a person for myself. I’d devoted all my time and energy to doing whatever I fancied to loads of inexplicably available women, and now I’d got myself laid up: I was, quite literally, a martyr to it.
For a fortnight I had to lie in bed being ill, moaning and drinking Lucozade; I couldn’t get anything solid down except soft boiled eggs with little toast soldiers, like my mum used to make, spread with Marmite; I do like my Marmite. And a bit of salmon for lunch, with a few creamed potatoes, and maybe a little orange mousse afterwards; Dinner, a scrap of rare steak, some fava beans, a few crinkle-cut chips. Supper, well, perhaps a few biscuits, a little cheese, some grapes. So many people from The Scene came to see me, bringing little gifts, saying I’d soon be on the mend, but I felt as weak as a kitten; I don’t know how I ever got well again.
Meanwhile my slave kept my business ticking over, cooked the meals, cleaned the house, looked after the kids, mended the car, unblocked six metres of sewer pipe, re-routed the three-phase cable in the workshop and answered the phone, but that was just her usual routine. Yes, I had written a column for FHM - ‘Masterwork’ -describing such high stats that nobody but me could match them. Sure, I had plans of buying an armoured personnel carrier. OK, I was planning to shave all my hair off to hide my alopecia and look hard, and affect a New Zealand accent. One day she brought in this funny guy in an old suit with egg on his tie. I didn’t know him then, but that was the Prof. Fucking great guy. Told me he knew what was up with me – I was not, definitely not, going to die. He is the best fucking medico in the world. My best friend, and I don’t say that lightly. He told me not to be scared; I had got a dose, like the clap or genital warts and there WAS a cure.
In order to meet Professor Strangetrousers, we had first to contact his agent at the London firm of Berk, Berk and Plackett. After a three hour wait in her answerphone system, we were subjected to an interrogation worthy of Enver Hoja’s Albania, before being told that her client was on a five week holiday in Monte Casino, but on his return she would ask if he would consider granting an interview.
It was three weeks before the professor himself phoned us in person, saying that he would be delighted to talk to us over lunch at his club, Fraud’s: We would be paying.
Frauds stands at the junction of Drury Lane and Longacre, and boasts the like of Victorian virtuoso, philanderer, burglar and eventually murderer Charles Peace among its former members, along with William Joyce, Robert Maxwell, and John Stonehouse. Today, Strangetrousers’ fellow members include Jeffery Archer, David Litvinoff, and Lord Lucan. The professor recommended us to the Lobster Thermidore followed by Monkfish, but ordered Jerusalem Artichoke and Jugged Hare himself.
“Liked the thing you did about Sad Sub Syndrome”, he remarked as the waiter tucked our napkins into place. “Very pat from the telly piece. D’you know, I had to sue the BBC before they’d stump up. Skinflints, the lot of them.”
We steered the conversation toward the plight of Kurt Arroganz.
“Ill?” he exclaimed, between artichokes. “Kurt’s no madder than me! Saner probably, but he’s not very clever. He’s just a bloke on the SM Scene who gets off on being stupidly masculine, and needs some excuse for the complete twattery that he expects the rest of us to put up with. I provide the excuse – obviously for a monstrous fee, which I’m prepared to say accommodates my opinion as a consultant, but as you’re probably guessing, has more to do with my ability to tell him what he wants to hear, and the sheer enormity of the sum makes the diagnosis sound convincing.”
But what about The Iron Master Brotherhood? The professor gave an eloquent shrug.
“It keeps ‘em off the street”, he said. “There’s really no harm in getting them to build sweat lodges deep in the forest, go on long, dangerous night hikes in the Brecon Beacons, or take up philately in semi-darkened rooms under nameless office blocks in Walworth, but it really doesn’t stop them talking about themselves long after everyone has stopped listening, it just separates them from innocent bystanders. I can’t stop Kurt telling anyone who will stand still for long enough – and that, I can tell you, is not long – about how he single-handedly saved The Firms Boat Party from the police by telling them he was in the CIA, but at least I can make it so the only people he tells are deluded egomaniacs like himself, who aren’t interested.
“That’s the problem, you see; whatever you tell him, anything that disagrees with his own quite bizarre view of the world, has got to be wrong, otherwise he is. In order to get better, he’d have to accept that I’m right and he’s wrong, and one way or another he manages to tell me that he always right every time I see him. He can’t do wrong, and he is, as he also always says, paying the money.
Quite a hefty sum, it seems. Is that how the professor affords such expensive excursions, a professional agent, and the membership of Fraud’s Club?
“It helps certainly, but I get far more in private donations from women; slave-girls, barmaids, table-dancers, wives, passers-by. I’m doing a social service, just giving these men something else to do. One man’s been with Kurt in The Brotherhood for six months solid, learning to put ships in bottles; I got a letter from his wife yesterday, she’s so glad that he’s got a fulfilling hobby at last, instead of marching round the house in jodhpurs, doing a bad impersonation of James Mason in The Prisoner of Zenda. It warmed my heart, I must confess. I’m not a bad man.”
We asked if he wasn’t worried about the possible affect on his lifestyle that our article might bring.
“Not remotely”, he said blithely. “Kurt doesn’t read anything written about SM; he firmly believes that he knows everything there is to know, and that reading is generally unmanly. Even if he did read it, he wouldn’t believe it was really about him – not the uncomplimentary bits anyway – and reading in detail, to him, is on a par with bending over for the soap in the barrack shower and shouting ‘Take me, take me, Sergeant ‘Nosher’ Harris’. No, write what you like. It won’t make a blind bit of difference.”
He was still chortling as he swayed off down Covent Garden, waving a bottle of champagne in the air.
From SM, Europe and Everything by Ishmael Skyes