Friday, October 27, 2006

That about wraps it up

(Thanks to Strange Hobbies for this great picture of a man in a mummy cast!)

Am I jumping the gun a little here? :-) I mean seeing as how Halloween is soon approaching, I thought it only appropriate if we took a look at a unique type of cast, which some people adore endlessly and others wouldn't be caught dead in...(I know, don't quit my day job).

I don't feel the need to tell you what a true (Egyptian) mummy is, surely you all learned about them, just as I did, in elementary school. Instead let's delve into the realm of recreational mummy casting (no, this does not mean that you cast up your dear, sweet mother). Mummy casting means that you are put into - or alternatively you put someone else into - cast which is designed to mimic the look of a real, millenniums old mummy.

There are largely two routes that one can take to create this look; first off you can take the bandage road and wrap yourself in several rolls of white bandages (the type of bandages is really up to you, some people like heavy gauze others prefer heavier types like white colored tension bandages), thereby achieving something that might look quite entirely like a Halloween costume (not of course, that there is anything in the least wrong with that!). The second, and more labor intensive route is to have yourself cast (you'll need at least one willing helper here, if you're to cover your entire body) in either a plaster or fiberglass cast so that your limbs are "pinned" to your body (instead of being casted individually, such as in a full body cast) and you look as though you were just dug up during an archaeological expedition.

In reality, the mummies of ancient Egypt (or other societies who also practiced this "art form" for that matter) were not encased in fiberglass or plaster, instead (usually) linen bandages were swaddled around their bodies, after the removal of the corpses' internal organs, in order to preserve them for the afterlife (I realize that I've just simplified what is a very difficult and skilled task to an almost pre-school like level, my apologizes there). Today however - at least in terms of recreational casting - the idea is certainly not to gussy up a dead body for the great beyond, but instead to create a desired look and experience for the caster.

Mummification using casting materials, or any other stiff/hard/tight/restrictive material such as latex, rubber, leather, Saran (plastic) warp, vet wrap, duct tape, or pvc, is something that does not appeal to everyone. It has more than a slight overtone of bondage to it, because you (or the person in the mummy cast) is left essentially at the mercy of all who know about their current role. A person in a mummy cast is very similar to one in a full body cast, where in all four limbs, the torso and possibly the neck/head/face are entirely encased in one large, continuous cast. On the other hand, a fair number of people like mummification because it allows them to become a bondage victim.

Sometimes, though certainly not always, you'll come across images where a person is wrapped up (usually in some sort of bandage or vet wrap type material) much like a mummy, but in addition to that, some or all of their limbs, will have been tucked/pressed/contorted in order to create the look of an amputated limb. One common fact in the majority of mummy casts and bondage costumes that I've seen is that it's highly important to cover the person's mouth. This creates a look which is a bit like a ninja's face mask, but moreover it looks a lot like the way that ancient mummies' faces were wrapped up. I like this aspect a lot because I'm a bog fan of face, head and neck casts. There are even some mummification instances (again, usually with bandages not casts) where the wearer's entire face is coved so that no skin (or almost no skin, they still have to breath safely somehow) is showing, thusly they are wrapped from the bottom of their feet to the very top of their head (a breathing tube can be used in if the entire face is wrapped in order to ensure that the casted person can still get enough oxygen). Nice, really, really nice!

Though I do admittedly prefer "traditional" full body casts, as a lover of large casts I can instantly see the appealing and alluring aspects that a mummy cast offers. It's restrains, large, cumbersome, and sensual (the feeling of being "trapped" or "helpless" creates sensory deprivation for the wearer, plus getting to feel the bandages or casting material over your whole body at one time is thrilling and for most people who are into casting, highly erotic).

If the idea of wearing a non-cast (in other words not using plaster or fiberglass for your mummy outfit) appeals to you (and or/your partner[s]), than I highly recommend that you read this instructional article from the (med fetish lovers!) site,

For casters who want to embark on the pleasurable experience of wearing a mummy cast, you will need to get a hold of enough to casting material to cover your entire body (or as much of it as you want casted), this naturally varies depending on your overall body size and height. Usually it requires a little less casting material than a full body cast because the limbs are not individually wrapped, but instead the casted person is locked in place with a cast that hold all of their limbs against their body. Another thing to determine is the duration that you wish to wear your mummy cast for. If it's a few hours you might be able to get by with out a potty break, but if you're seriously considering the idea of an over-night - or longer - stint in a mummy cast than you are certainly going to require a helper, and means by which to relieve yourself (catheter, bed pan, etc). If your face is covered as well, you'll also begin to become hungry that longer that you go without food. For these two reason (and certainly others), mummification is usually a relatively short lived experience, because it renders you so totally immobilized and helpless to the world.

A mummy cast offers the rec caster a fascinating challenge and a very unique experience. Where as most of the non-casting public couldn't tell you what "LLC" or "SAC" stood for, they would instantly know what you meant if you said "mummy bandages", because over the years Hollywood and TV have continually used mummies in all manner of films, and therefore they've become a commonplace object of mystery and intrigue. Another interesting facet of this style of cast, is that it is something which has virtually no usage in terms of actually being used by doctors as a means of treating an injury. In other words it's a variety of cast which exists almost entirely amongst recreational casters and bondage fans.

You're the only person who knows if wearing a mummy cast is right for you. If you're not certain you want to be that heavily casted, consider being mummified in one of the other materials such as duct tape or vet wrap, which make for a restorative adventure even without the use of plaster! No matter what, remember that the whole point of recreational casting is to explore those areas of cast-play that most appeal to you, and if this means mummification that by all means explore that avenue. After all, mummification might just be the very source of modern day casting itself.