Friday, September 10, 2010

Gross Old People Sex Party.

So in the near future I'm invited to a swingers' party, which I have taken to referring to as a "gross old people sex party" just to be annoying. Because ain't no one gonna accuse me of being too mature. For the most part I'm looking forward too it--in a worst case scenario it'll be an interesting observational experience, and in a "99.9% probability" scenario I'll have sex with 500 people.

But the one thing that sorta weirds me out (well, the second thing, after "the possibility of encountering greasy gold-chainy chest-hairy swinger types and having one of them touch me") is that these things have a "no single men" policy. Now, I understand the necessity, on one level, of not letting in a pack of ravening wolves whose only knowledge of the lifestyle is that this is where the totally slutty easy chicks are at. I do see the potential there for turning a clusterfuck into a metaphorical clusterfuck. But allowing no single men is kind of creepy, because I feel like I'm being stocked. Like a sport fish. The woman supply is being artificially inflated, and even though I'm sure I'll have plenty of selection if I want it, it still sort of weirds me out to be used as a supply.

Although, to be fair to the ravening wolves, all I really know about swingers is that they fuck around a lot and stuff. It's a different culture and mindset than the sex communities I've been involved in before, and I have learning to do at this party.

It's been like a year since I had sex with no hitting, too. I wonder what that's even like.

EDIT: I forgot to mention that I'm going with a group of pervert friends, so I won't be entirely adrift in the sea of gross old people. That makes a big difference in these kinds of adventures.


  1. I agree that's creepy. If they want to be fair and still filter the ravening wolves, assuming it's a straight-oriented setup, seems like they could just have a no showing up alone policy; bring someone of the opposite gender even if they're not really "with you". Seems unlikely that would keep out any of the single women who wanted to attend, without the pond stocking.

  2. It's partly based on the simple assumption that someone who has no social investment in his reputation with the group and no one vouching for him, and no potential outlet other than "scoring" within the group has no real incentive to respect norms of boundaries, consent, etc. If you've ever seen how couples making love on the beach at Cap d'Agde in France (the anything-goes swinger nude beach) are quickly surrounded by crowds of men watching and masturbating at a distance, you understand how quickly "ravenous wolves" gather. It's a "Dance With the One who Brought You" safety valve and it's intended as such, which is why the suggestion that you show up with someone you're "not with" is somewhat awkward. The whole point is that men need some woman to take care of them, sexually, dammit, so you'd better already have a woman to play that role, buddy, or you don't get in. TM Miller had a good post "Tracking Shit on the Carpet" at the Yes Means Yes Blog about the dynamics of consent in fairly-public play parties. I don't think many men are good enough at responding to an entire evening's rejection by every woman they ask, or considering the party a curiosity or social opportunity, to warrant open admission. And, well, yes, you ARE being stocked.

  3. Yep, you have some learning to do; it's a totally different vibe from BDSM parties. Except for 'no one has to do anything that they don't want to' part, that is pretty much the same.

    I think you might be surprised at how warm and friendly of a crowd they are.

  4. I look forward to the full report! I've heard tell of a lot of it, but your perspective would be really interesting! I doubt I'll get to see it in this lifetime, unless my husband gets dropped on his head and rewired. :P

  5. @ Mousie --

    Doing that is known as bringing 'a ticket" (as in, the woman is a ticket to get you in the door -- you don't get a lot of problem single women showing up, although it happens) and is considered really classless in swinger circles. It pretty much guarantees that there'll be a single guy prowling around doing everything single guys do at swinger parties that the hosts/guests DON'T want happening, AND that there'll be a 'spare' woman there -- who's most likely bored, or financially profitting from being the "ticket" to get the guy in. Either way, it's bad for the dynamic of the party.

    @ Holly: stop bitching, you're looking forward to the discounted admission. :)

  6. Eurosabra and Jack: I think I see. So the basic problem isn't so much that they don't want to be overwhelmed with men; it's that it is relatively common for single men at swinger parties to be a pain in the ass, but relatively uncommon for single women. So they let in the single women because there's no reason to exclude them, but that results in a gender imbalance. Much less creepy.

    Or it would have been if not for the discounted admission, which seems to go right back to pond stocking. Unless that was a joke?

  7. No, not a joke, most parties deep-discount single woman (the biggest party in New England, fr'instance, charges $40 a couple, $10 for single women). Single women are not common in the swinger scene, and pretty valued, so they're 'recruited' with cheaper or free entrance, etc. They end up (at your typical swinger party) serving as the universal connectors in the Erector-set (pun most definitely intended) threesomes, foursomes, fivesomes and sixteensomes that mushroom out at the parties. You'll rarely see openly bi men at the parties (the swinger scene is overall pretty discriminatory that way; being a bisexual guy keeps you out, while you almost have to be bisexual as a woman to get in [at a minimum it's like five column shifts to the right in the Swinging Superheroes RPG]), and most of the guys are semi-paranoid about coming in contact (pun not intended that time) with each other. Extra women as sexual padding is fun and makes them feel more secure. :)

  8. @Eurosabra: From what I've heard, Cap d'Agde was never intended as a swingers environment. It was an experiment in creating an entire clothing-optional mini-city. It was meant to cater to nudists. During the summer, it still mostly functions as such. During the spring and fall, it becomes a family-unfriendly swingers environment. (It's mostly dead in the winter.) Nudists or swingers who show up during the "wrong season" tend to find themselves in a hostile environment.

    (Disclaimer: I have not personally been there, and this description is what the place was supposedly like during the 1990s, so it may not be an accurate reflection of its current state.)

  9. Jack, they offer a deep discount to single women, but they do something to select against straight women? I'm especially curious about this dynamic, since straight is so much more common in the general population.

    I'm getting the impression that the whole thing is pretty much designed for the few men who can get in, but then you'd expect them to want single straight women too. Or I guess not; since it's mainly couples, there should be a reasonable sufficiency of women; limiting the number of single women by selecting for bisexuality still leaves the men with a lot of choices, and bi women can function as the universal connectors like you said.

  10. Mousie - I don't think bisexual women aren't selected for, so much as straight women engage in bisexual acts. It's actually a really stcky situation (i.e., one entirely defined by male desire, and yet in practice frequently plenty fun for the women anyway) and it deserves pontificating and God I wish I had a real keyboard.

  11. Luck out. I wanna go to a swingers' party! Have fun.

    But yeah, do you ever think they're trying to weed out the guys to get the women to turn to each other for sexual comfort? Just like Women's Colleges.

    There may be only one way to catch a unicorn, but there are lots of ways people try to make them.

  12. Mousie, I think you've got the idea. Most parties don't discriminate against straight women (there are a few that require the women to be bisexual, but also a few[er in number] that require the men to be bisexual as well, specific themed parties, etc.), but bisexual women will end up on average getting more action (with women AND guys) as most swinger guys seem to enjoy watching women together, so the guys indidivually select, on a play-by-play basis, bisexual women slightly more often (I myself always bring at least two bisexual women to the parties I go to, it's like bringing the aforementioned spare universal connectors :) ).

    Given that single women are uncommon in the scene, the typical party make-up is perhaps 51% women, 49% men (i.e., almost all couples with a handful of single women), so I don't think it can be accurately characterized as "the whole thing is pretty much designed for the few men who can get in." More "for whoever can get in and likes to make fuck-fuck."

    Of the women I have observed in the swinger scene who engage in bisexual acts, the majority are 'socially bi' -- they enjoy bisexual sex play, but don't experience romantic attraction to other women.

    Holly -- I also wouldn't characterize the swinger scene as "one entirely defined by male desire" -- the women at the parties tend to play with as much ravenous, joyous abandon as the guys do, so it's more "entirely defined by people's desire," as opposed to women occasionally, accidentally enjoying the things they're doing for the satisfaction of The Patriarchy. Not everything is about the oppression of womyn, you silly little girl.

    (Bet you wish you had the real keyboard even more now, dontcha? :) )

  13. Why you... Just let me shave my pussy and put on the schoolgirl outfit and I'll come down there and tell you what I think of you, buddy.

  14. Why Holly, I didn't think you were the schoolgirl-outfit type. ;)

    Though it's one of the most universal tropes in our society. I wonder why that is? Not that I'm disagreeing with it; I'll happily admit to thinking schoolgirl outfits are damn sexy.

  15. Holly--

    About wishing for a real keyboard again...look into a netbook. Many are cheaper than most computers. I paid around $250 for mine.

    Have loads of fun at the "gross old people sex party." I can't wait to read about it.

  16. "Gross Old People Sex Party" would be a fucking awesome band name. DIBS.

  17. @Not Me: Yeah, it's pretty remarkable how the social-utopian experiments of the 68ers foundered on the rock of the Sexual Revolution really being the Expanded Domain of Seduction. (Houellebecque, "Elementary Particles" and "Whatever" are particularly good on this topic.) I was there in '93-'95 and it was just blah forced open sexuality, in '03-'05 it was just scary, as in "hide your children" scary. Perhaps I need to keep an ear closer to the ground there, but I am loathe to do so. seems to handle similar communication/consent issues on the Playa @ Burning Man and their PDFs seem to show the kind of humanized (English ?fail?) communication that doesn't exist at C d'A. Or maybe I just read too much Houellebecque.

    The cynic in me wants to play the "Fortune Cookie" game (where you add a stock phrase Y to the end of a fortune cookie aphorism X) where Y="for the men who can get in" and X=any given positive statement about swinging. But I'm being a grump.