Just about everyone who plays around with S&M ends up having at least one odd sounding hard limit.
Mine is tickling.
Whip me, spank me, pour hot wax on me, cane me, decorate my sensitive bits with clothespins -- but don't tickle me. Sounds crazy, right?
When I was a kid, my uncle convinced me a roller-coaster wasn't that big of a deal. He assured me I could handle it okay. I've always had a problem with getting sick on roller-coasters, but the parts I could see of it weren't too bad. Little did I know, it was designed so you didn't see the extreme parts from the viewing stations. My uncle lied.**
Not only that, but he began tickling me as we went up the hill, and didn't stop as the cars whooshed down the other side. I puked all over the place, with most of it blowing back on me. I suppose he thought I'd emptied my stomach, because he did it again a few hills later, and I puked again. I aimed it at him that time though - even as a small child I apparently understood the concept of taking your retribution where you can get it.
Even now, thirty-five or so years later, if you tickle me I'll puke. My cousins pretty much all know this from personal experience (I think they all had to find out for themselves if it were true or not while we were growing up), and I had them warn my husband of it right off the bat. Many of them were quite graphic in their descriptions. It's a hard limit he's never been interested in trying to push past, for some reason.
I know it's still there because my oldest daughter had to test it out last year, just to see if I'd really throw up. I made her clean up the mess.
So my hard limits include things like animals, scat, kids, gun play, bastinado, and tickling. It's like the Sesame Street song -- One of these things is not like the others, one of these things just doesn't belong.
If you play around with S&M, do you have an odd sounding hard limit? Have you ever read a book where someone had a crazy hard limit?
** For the record, my children have never been alone with said uncle. He lives out of town, and when he's in town I keep their exposure to him at a minimum. My mother never protected me from her brother's antics, but I will protect my kids.