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Sex & Sexuality Mon Jun 14 2010

Exploring Chicago's All-Bi Swingers Club

This article was submitted by freelance writer Rachel Rabbit White.

I'm sitting on the edge of the bed. The room is dark, filled with the sound of flesh smacking flesh and throaty "ahhhhhs." Next to me are huddles of middle aged men, standing, pants-off, half-hard. I'm sitting upright, purse in lap feeling a bit overdressed.

In front of me is a triple set of couples, all in the doggy-style position, fucking in front of a mirror. Guy on girl, guy on guy, guy on girl. The earthy smell of anal sex filters the air.

It's a swinger party. Or "lifestyle party" if you prefer. But something here is different. This party, Private Encounters, is Chicago's first and only all bisexual lifestyle party. Usually, guy on guy sex is sort of not allowed.

"The lifestyle is pretty homophobic" said Kevin, the bottom half of the guy-on-guy scene. "On our online profiles if we said I was bi, we'd not get play," he explained. "But, at the same time if we didn't put that Teri (his petite, blonde wife) is bi, that would get us less play." It's hard to imagine Kevin getting "less play." Though his face is slightly weathered from what I can only imagine to be too many hours in a tanning bed, he is one of the few men here whose body is sculpted and muscular.

Tim and Karen, the hosts of the party, agreed with Kevin. "When we put bi-curious on my side, our profile hits dropped to zero," said Tim, in his Chicago-heavy accent. Looking for down guys became something of a sexual scavenger hunt. "I know what words to look for on the profile. It will be 'open minded,' 'up for anything,' alternative interests' — those are generally the tip-off."

Tim and Karen realized that although male bisexuality was erased in the lifestyle, there was an underground market for it. This is what led them to start Private Encounters in Country Club Hills, a south Chicago suburb. There are all-bisexual clubs in other cities, including Prescott, AZ and Pittsburgh, which leaves the question, is Chicago more bi-phobic? "I know it is a stereotype that Midwesterners are sexually repressed, but it is kind of true. There are less people out. And that is not the same in New York or LA," Kevin said, plastic cup in hand.

As I entered the party, the DJ was spinning "Cowboy" by Kid Rock. A quick scan of the room found few young people among naked potbellied men and menopause-aged women in lacy negligees. I also noticed that, being in the south suburbs, the party was a mix of race and socio-economics. On this night, the younger people tended to be black and almost anyone over 35, white.

privateencounters.jpgAbove me, a wooden spiral staircase revealed a floor of more naked men. Someone's legs were in the air, and a man stood, humping between them in time to Kid Rock's backup singers. "Ridin' at night 'cause I sleep all day. I can smell a pig from a mile away."

I was whisked away for the tour. First, I was shown the kitchen area where the naked people congregated over the food table, grazing on bits of cheese.

There, I met Ivana, a woman with an Anna Wintour haircut and heavy Polish accent. As we chatted, a droopy blonde in lingerie sauntered by. "I don't like fat," Ivana said, shaking her head. "But sometimes you are in the midst of it, and you just don't know someone is there, or you don't care. But you must always remember to say no if you don't like it," she added, nodding at her advice.

Ivana's husband came over to join the conversation. He was tall with black hair, streaked silver. He also had an accent. "People become more attractive in this setting," he explained. "And the exciting thing here is that everyone is bi, everyone is a possibility!"

I am also bi. And so is my male partner, who accompanied me. Like many drunk bi girls, I have found myself both desperate and delighted in downtown night clubs, where otherwise straight girls become bi-for-a-night. I get the "everyone is a possibility" excitement.

Tim grabbed my arm to show me one of the play-rooms. "This is the glory hole," he said proudly. It was a double booth with a red curtain and a hole, leveling from thighs to belly button. Inside each booth, a mini TVs played a constant stream of porn.

Later, as I took a breather on the couch, a middle-aged woman wearing a black teddy and smeared eye makeup came over. She sat, staring, biting her nails. I asked how she was enjoying the evening. "I don't know. I just, I just, can't get into it tonight," she said, jumpy. "I just took a shower," she added, pointing at her wet hair and smudged lashes. She is on the verge of having an anxiety attack, I thought.

The room began to fill and minutes later I saw that a naked man was standing in front of her and she was now politely performing fellatio. Ivana's advice about taking care of yourself and knowing when and how to say no began to seem key.

Teri said she thought what set the bisexual party apart from other lifestyle parties was that it's a bit more aggressive. At most parties,women have control and men are less active in initiating. But in this space where men hit on other men, testosterone festers. I didn't feel unsafe, but I did feel this vibe. The guys were there to play, and it almost felt like a celebration of male sexuality. Is that why we are so scared of their bisexuality? I wondered Is it because we condemn and dismiss male sexuality as a whole?

Being bisexual and male is a difficult identity and one that is important on the landscape of sexuality. In the mainstream male sexuality is often left unexplored or over-simplified. Bi guys are doing good not only for themselves but for everyone's understanding of male sexuality.

Teri took my hand and led me up the spiral staircase. The second floor was a traffic jam of naked men, cranking their dicks like laffy taffy. In the upstairs playroom, naked bodies had fallen all over one and other. There were probably 15 people in a mess of moaning, sucking and fucking. There were a few threesomes. The centerpiece was a queen-size black woman with her face buried in a bed, belting whale-like sounds, while a white boy jumped about, doing her from behind.

"Surreal" is all I could come up with. I didn't drink anything at the party and didn't need to. I felt like I was on some porno acid trip.

Everyone was so natural about the whole thing, the sex was nonchalant. One older woman, wearing what appeared to be a metallic swimsuit cover-up, even nodded off — sleeping through a double penetration scene.

I questioned people about why male bisexuality was taboo. "I just think it is conditioning, when we are kids it is OK for girls to hug and hold hands even. But two young guys, no," Tim said. Kevin had a different idea. "Honestly, I think it is leftover from AIDS and the big scare that caused in the '80s. I think since then we've had this fear of male bisexuality, not female bisexuality."

Instantly, I think of David Bowie and Mick Jagger's alleged and somewhat accepted affair in the '70s. When AIDS became a national crisis in the '80s, many swinger clubs banned guy-on-guy sex. The infamous Plato's in New York, which already did not allow homosexual attendees, banned all anal and fellatio before they were shut down.

But being at the party, it was hard to imagine clubs banning something that seemed to happen so organically among these men. Being bisexual myself, I'm prone to think everyone is bisexual. So I'm not exactly unbiased when I wonder, as homosexuality becomes more accepted, will hetero-flexibility take over? I admire bisexual men. It takes a lot of self-awareness and courage to probe the fact that you might be bisexual. And a lot more to come out and play.

This feature is supported in part by a Community News Matters grant from The Chicago Community Trust and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. More information.

 

Mark Cole / June 21, 2010 4:03 AM

I think a lot of the fear of bi men by straight guys is that we are too much like them. We are not perceived as the "other" as gay men are. This makes us even more of a threat to their masculinity. In the gay community, bi men don't seem to fair much better for reasons (after 35 years) I'm still trying to fathom. As for bi gals... rock on... You"re HOT!

Br. Michael Oboza / January 25, 2011 5:27 PM

I am founder of Bisexual Queer Alliance Chicago. As a Bisexual man, I owe it to myself, first and far most, to embrace my birthright, being born bisexual in my own respectful way. It is my birthright that no one can take from me, not even me. Rock on!

Gee Bigsexyfreaks / June 7, 2011 6:35 PM

I host bisexual swinger parties myself and I must say the facility at Private encounters is very nice. They have a decent spread with food and beverages, nice people and plenty of space for sexual encounters. Plus the house has glory holes so thats cool and u don't have to fuck which is cool too. At my party "EVERYONE IS FUCKING"

veronica / November 23, 2011 11:30 AM

Plez let me kno if any Thanksgiving Party's are happen this weekend..I'm Bisexual Wow I said it that's a first!! I fill so free And like McDonald's Say's "I'm Loving It!!! lol My man is not Bisexual but he is very supportive of my sexuality we are a little nerves but very Intersted in what is to come..Living My Life like it's Golden!!!! Gobble Gobble..

Abdul Knight / January 10, 2012 1:02 PM

Chicagoland Jan 14th Swingers Meet & Greet / Freaknit party call or text 4 more details & invite [number deleted]

apollo69 / February 6, 2012 5:12 PM

Let me know if u guys have am event i would love to cum....

Douglas Lyons / February 11, 2012 5:40 PM

Let me know if you are having an event would love to come

lakieda blakely / November 7, 2012 5:33 PM

I want informaion on any upcoming events

Jasper B. Jones / December 20, 2012 8:20 PM

if you guys would like to send me more information on the up comming event i would very much appreciate it.

Dave / July 31, 2013 11:11 AM

I will be in Chicago the second and third weeks of August. Where can I get information on b-sexual clubs or parties?Thanks!

greg / October 13, 2013 11:03 PM

Is it (private encounters) open 15, 16th of oct. Ill be there with my wife then ? If not where should we go. Were both good looking 40 yrs old.

Lat / October 14, 2013 12:13 AM

Just arrived, in Chicago Monday night. Looking for bi event

James / October 22, 2013 11:51 PM

I just arrived in Chicago and am here until Friday morning. Are there any events for a tall athletic bi male? Thanks for being accepting Chicago.

James / November 4, 2013 1:43 PM

I am dating a very attractive bisexual TS - we both like both... would this be a good place for us to go and 'play'?

Dante / November 13, 2013 7:59 PM

James, reach out to me. My fiance and I like TS and we may want to meet you

larry / November 29, 2013 8:14 PM

We are lloking for a party this Mon or Tues ight in Chicago. Any ideas?

larry / November 29, 2013 8:15 PM

We are lloking for a party this Mon or Tues ight in Chicago. Any ideas?

Mz.wet / January 2, 2014 10:11 PM

I would like to start a small group in Naperville and surrounding locations. If interested please call [deleted], serious only

Tom / May 1, 2014 8:21 PM

Plese this posting; DAVE / JULY 31, 2013 11:11 AM

Then phone number now belongs to a different person (ME!). Thanks.

Andrew Huff / May 4, 2014 11:55 PM

@Tom: Done.

I'm also removing all other phone numbers in the thread and closing the comments on this post.

Culture Tue Nov 04 2014

7,550 Miles from Home, Chicago's Ethiopians Build a Cultural Museum

By Danielle Elliott

Some 7,550 miles separate Chicago from Ethiopia's capital, Addis Ababa. For the 10,000 Ethiopians living in Chicago, that distance seems a lot smaller due to the Ethiopian Community Association of Chicago.
Read this feature »

Steve at the Movies Wed Nov 26 2014

Horrible Bosses 2, The Penguins of Madagascar & Happy Valley

By Steve Prokopy

Read this column »

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Events

Thu Nov 27 2014
The Warriors @ Logan Theatre

Thu Nov 27 2014
Second City's Holidazed & Confused Revue @ UP Comedy

Thu Nov 27 2014
Chicago Italian Film Festival

Fri Nov 28 2014
Pixar In Concert @ CSO

Fri Nov 28 2014
You, Me, Them, Everybody Live @ Hungry Brain

Fri Nov 28 2014
Sing-Along Sound of Music @ Music Box

Fri Nov 28 2014
Michael Milano Solo Exhibition for Trunk Show

Fri Nov 28 2014
23rd Annual Wreathing of the Lions @ Art Institute

Sat Nov 29 2014
Pixar In Concert @ CSO

Sun Nov 30 2014
Pixar In Concert @ CSO

Tue Dec 2 2014
David Schalliol @ International Museum of Surgical Science

Wed Dec 3 2014
Chicago Filmmakers @ The Comfort Station Film Screening


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