Friday, March 26, 2010

The Rules And Etiquette Of Swinging

This post was totally going to be about one thing, but the more that I got sidetracked, the more that it totally became about something else. See, it was going to be about this story that I read over yonder in the Sacramento Bee about a correction officer who claimed that he..."was at a San Francisco restaurant with his wife when a parolee recognized him, then gunned him down with a shot that left him paralyzed from the waist down." He ended up filing a workers' compensation claim "...that could have paid him and his wife nearly $2.5 million." That's an awful lot of cheese. Too bad that his cheese plan fell apart when it turned out that he wasn't really shot after he had left a restaurant...unless "restaurant" is slang for "swingers club". But if that were the case, then "parolee" would have to be slang for "guy whose wife the officer was banging". I checked the Urban Dictionary and it didn't say anything about that, so I'm really doubting that's the correct vernacular to use there.

That's right. The guy was at a swingers club and got shot afterwards and tried to claim it was work related. Yeah, not so much. But here's the thing: While I was reading this article, it said that this club, known by the name of Twist, is located " Pacific Avenue and Kearny Street in San Francisco". Huh. I don't recall any sort of swingers club being down there. Oh, that's because "there is no sign out front to advertise its existence" (which seems reasonable) and "...admittance is allowed only after the owner approves an e-mail request". OK, so this is an establishment with some rules. That's where I started to become more interested in how a swingers club operated than I did about the dipwad that got himself shot after a "session".

I figured that I'd look for this place online since it said that you needed to have your email request approved by the owner. (The owner who, I learned from the article in the Bee, is a gentleman who expects us to believe that his real name is Ivan Stroganov. Seriously, dude? You're the owner of a swingers club and you're claiming your name is Stroganov? I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that I don't think that's really your name. Call it a hunch.) And I found it. And lucky me! There are sets of rules and etiquette for anyone who wants to visit Twist and participate with other folks in some sort of untoward sexual practices that likely involve many naked bodies and lots of writhing and sweating. Ick.

Maybe it's because I'm a chick and I don't possess a penile unit, but the thought of the whole "swinging" scene just does nothing for me. I'm sure it's different if you're the one doing all of the checking of all of the oil (so to speak) and not the one supplying the orifices (orifii??), but I just don't get the appeal of it all. But what does appeal to me are rules. I enjoy order in things. And I find it fascinating that in a place where the whole swapping of mates goes on, they have guidelines. (Me, personally? My first guideline is "No mate swapping". But then again, that's just me.)
And this is where I got distracted...with the rules of Twist. Let's look at the first couple of rules for this particular swingers club, shall we? Rule One: Twist is an invitation only private party! No one may attend any function or come in the property without being invited to Twist. Twist is not open to the general public. Now that seems perfectly reasonable. That whole invitation thing almost makes it sounds like a dinner party. Almost. Well, come on! You don't just want weirdos wandering in off of the street and disrupting all of the freelance fornication! Please.

Rule Number Two: STD (sexually transmitted diseases) -- As it is a very private matter, we do not inquire about your status nor request any medical proof. (Oooh! You know, I...I kinda wish you WOULD!) It is your responsibility to notify the couple you are about to play with if you have any STD. First of all, can I just call attention to the term "play with"? What is up with that? But really, how do you suppose that this whole rule is implemented? I'm having a hard time imagining something like "Um, I have chlamydia! And I would like to join you now!" I don't know that something like that is going to go over all that well. Rule Number Two goes on to state "We strongly suggest addressing the issue before moving on to the lounge, where the heat of the moment can cause you to forget about it." (I guess the lounge is where everything really gets going, but that's pure speculation on my part.)

Forget about it? Are you kidding me? "Oh, that's right! I forgot I had AIDS!" I'm not liking this policy very much. You can't have a blood test required with all of those applications that are submitted? Something? Other than their word, provided they haven't "forgot" about their "condition"? That seems silly. ("You know, the whole time I was banging your wife, there was something nagging me in the back of my mind. It just wouldn't come to me. But then I remembered and you know what it is? Gonorrhea!! And full blown AIDS! But anyway, that was great. See ya around!")

Now, given the lackadaisical nature of Rule Two, I was a bit surprised by Rule Number Four: "BYOB only for wine and beer. No hard liquor is allowed." What now? Let me get this straight. You're on the honor system for AIDS and syphilis, but you have very strict rules about hard liquor? None of that. AIDS, perhaps. Gin? Out of the question!!

Rule Number Six: Cell phones, cameras or video equipment is not permitted on the property. So, leave your tripod at home, folks!

Rule Number Seven: Any conduct requiring an apology is grounds for expulsion. Well, that's interesting. You know, there are some guys who just should automatically apologize after every time they have sex. But that aside, that's a rather broad requirement. Let me get this straight. The guy with AIDS can stay, but someone breaks wind and they're booted out? That guy has visible crabs, but because that guy brought whiskey, he has to go?! Seems like an odd way to do things, but what do I know about it? I'm not a swinger (nor will I ever be).

Rule Number Twelve (yes, there were twelve!): Last but certainly not least, have fun! Ohhh! I see! That's one of the rules! Have fun! How can you possibly go wrong when that's one of the rules! I get it now! They should have put that one first to avoid any confusion! Have fun!

Now, while you probably already know more than you wanted to, let's look at some of the etiquette guidelines as long as we're here. Number One: The most important thing to remember is consideration for the next person. That includes NO pressuring anyone, NO hassling, NO rude behavior and accepting "NO" politely. That's not a problem. I learned that growing up. That's just common decency (which makes it a little odd that it's the number one rule at a swingers club).

Number Two: Arrive and leave a party as a couple. Do not initiate activity with other couples unless both you and your partner are willing to join. It is expected that if one person swings, his or her partner is free and willing to do so as well. Clearly, that is in place to avoid what would seem like the most obvious scam that could be perpetrated on such an establishment. ("If you don't mind, I'll just start banging your wife here and, uh, my wife? Oh, yeah. Um, she should be along in about ten minutes or so. She had, uh, she had a thing. Oh, she's smoking hot. Here's her picture. No, that's really her! She should be here in about fifteen minutes. Did I say ten before? Yeah, I meant fifteen. Fifteen minutes or so. Sure.")
Number Three: Good health and hygiene is essential. Don't forget lingering alcohol or tobacco on your breath may be offensive to some. Again, I just want to remind you that technically, you can have AIDS and they're not going to say anything about that because that's private. But they're going to tell you not to have tobacco on your breath. AND they're going to include on their website, the very photo below of two girls squatting down and having a cigarette. It's the ol' Smoke N' Squat! Odd. Very odd indeed.

Number Four: A positive mental attitude and good emotional health will make for more successful encounters. Oh! So it's like a self-help thing. Having a positive mental attitude will make it a lot better for you whilst your wife is taking it from all angles by some other guy. Sure. That makes sense. I'm glad they included that one.

Number Six: Don't disturb the swinging enjoyment of others in a bedroom or other swing areas with loud or prolonged talk. What, exactly, would there be to talk about? Your day at work? Yeah, it's really hard for one dude to screw some other dude's wife when you're in the little sex cubicle next to them yammering on about your day at the office? It's an odd issue to have to address, that's for sure. It's not exactly a library.

Now, there are others, but I think I'm going to stop here. I found the whole thing a bit unsavory. I guess the whole part that I don't quite understand is why would you get married if you're just going to be boinking other people? I'm sure not all couples are married, but that is my question for those who are. I guess the reason that I don't get it is that I'm not the kind of person that would be comfortable in an environment like that. Maybe it would be the same for someplace that I'm comfortable with that they wouldn't be. I can't really think of what that would be, however. If you're comfortable being with your spouse in a room full of people whilst fornicating madly with other individuals, I'm guessing that you're going to be pretty comfortable in just about any environment that I put in front of you. Just a guess.

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Scott Jacobs said...

"but the thought of the whole "swinging" scene just does nothing for me."

I really wish you had told me this before I made those reservations...

Mare said...

Aww, dang it, Scott! I KNEW I kept forgetting to mention something! Hopefully, those reservations are refundable.

Could I interest you in myself in some sort of a Batgirl costume? (I don't really HAVE a Batgirl costume, but I'm trying to find some way to make it up to you for the whole "no swinging" oversight.)

~ Mary

Txscwgrl said...

To answer your question "Why get married if you're just gonna be bonking other people?" My husband and I are the loves of each other's lives, but.....we both have certain "likes" that the other doesn't! At a "nice" swingers club (no on scene play)you can meet with other couples that have similar likes and you get to indulge in said likes (at a nice hotel perhaps) and then go home and enjoy each other in the ways that you both enjoy! Most people that are against "swinging" are those whom can not seperate the act of sex with the emotions of love. ie: when we get with another couple to "play" (yes, this is the proper term, because that's all it is PLAY)I don't love this person and my husband doesn't love the other. It's kinda like someone you meet has a cool toy you'd like to play with but have no desire to own, you just wanna borrow it for a while then give it back and go back to enjoying your own toy! For those of us that CAN seperate sex and love, there is so much less stress in life, no jealousy. If YOUR toy doesn't do everything you want it to do and you can borrow another's toy that does do what you want, you get what you want and are satisfied rather than NOT getting what you want and resentin your toy for not providing it! I know that Swinging is not for everyone, but for those of us that do enjoy it, it makes perfect sense!

Mare said...

Hey, Txscwgrl.

I gotta say, your explanation of how the whole swinging thing works for you and your husband is actually the only explanation that I have ever heard that makes complete sense! And you're totally right about a lot of people not being able to separate emotions. That's where the whole thing stopped making sense for me. But your explanation does make sense and I appreciate you taking the time to write a comment that is actually informative and helpful, not to mention extremely insightful.

You're welcome here any time.

Thanks for reading!

~ Mare