What exactly was I doing spending an absurd amount of money on American Apparel lingerie? While it's true that I’ve always wanted a neon pink garter belt, the real reason I was outfitting myself in brightly colored mesh was that I was heading to Chemistry, my newest adventure on the Brooklyn Play party scene. And what else besides American Apparel can you wear to a hipster sex party in Williamsburg?
In order to get in the door at Chemistry you have to get approved or you won't get in. This requires filling out an application and sending in a picture. It is very expensive: $120 for single ladies, $130 for hetero couples, and $250 for single men—and there is also a warning that single men rarely get approved. Chemistry sends a list of rules beforehand—and, my god, once again so many rules! However, when going over this particular list of rules, I realized that it was pretty good everyday advice, as much as it was also sex party appropriate behavior.
Here are some of my favorite rules:
You are an adult and responsible for all of your actions. You should state your boundaries clearly and with conviction to everyone you play with. If you're a no, say “no”. Clearly. Conversely, people’s feelings should be handled with respect. Create and practice a nice, gentle way to tell someone you are not interested.
If you're a maybe...still say “no”. People will naturally take “maybe” to mean yes and will continue to ask. Plus, if you say “no” you can think that “maybe” over with no pressure.
Whether coming alone or with a partner, you should establish your boundaries before attending the party and stick to them until the end. It is not a good idea to re-negotiate your boundaries in the heat of the moment. Chemistry is not about the immediate end result.
Please do not bring negative energy into the party. If you (or you and your partner) happen to be in a bad place on the night of our event, come to the next one instead.
So this time, my gay best friend, Jonny, came with me to the sex party. Thankfully, I didn’t have to beg him the way I'd had to with my girlfriends. In fact, Jonny was thrilled, and even offered to buy all the booze and cabs. He came over to get ready before we left for the party. By "get ready" I mean drink half a bottle of spiced rum and role play pretending to be different people hitting on us and telling them “no.” I’m extremely glad we did this. Even playacting with Jonny, I discovered how hard it is to know and communicate where your boundaries are. We talked about how far we wanted to go. I said I would go to 3rd base, i.e. maybe some finger blasting and naked nipple play, but definitely no vag/penis fucking. Jonny said he would give or get a blow job but doubted anyone would be gay. We both agreed we would take off all our clothes for a sensual massage. Jonny told me if he started to freak out he would go into the corner and just start taking notes in his pocket notebook. I said I could take that hint.
At 11:30 pm we showed up at the largest loft I’ve ever seen, which contained the coolest bathroom ever—the sink was embedded in a tree. Chemistry has a different theme for each party and this one was “Let’s Play Doctor.” I hate costumes and I was worried it would look like an ER on Viagra. To my pleasant surprise, that wasn't the case. Plus, all the guests were incredibly attractive. I guess this is where sending in your headshot helps. There was not a single overweight person there. They were cool, fit, had beautiful shiny hair, and I wanted to see them all naked. For a brief second I thought, “Am I going to meet my husband here? Is that him—the silver fox with a stethoscope long enough to cover his junk?” I was very impressed, and much more ready to engage than I’d been expecting.
Chemistry really knows how to throw a party. It’s BYOB; you bring your bottle over to the bar and the bartender puts your name on it. This way you can invite people to have a drink with you. Clever. They didn’t open any of the playrooms until all the entertainment was over. This forces people to talk to each other first. For the first few hours it was simply a glamorous party at some cool person’s loft. Nothing to see here folks. Everyone was chatting and dancing. There was hilarious burlesque and food! There was even a vegetable buffet! We made salads and ate them with all our new beautiful best friends. Then I went to the bathroom and when I came back all my new best friends were naked and making out. It was a sight to behold.
This is what makes Chemistry so wonderful: while sex is the main agenda, how you get to sex is through conversation. Chemistry creates an atmosphere where folks spend a good couple of hours flirting. I am attracted to people for a variety of different reasons, their looks being only a tiny slice on the pie chart I love being able to have witty repartee with a partner, and I’ll pick that person over the hunk any day. I got to meet smart, funny people at Chemistry, and I got to see them naked.
Jonny and I decided to enter this new territory slowly. We would get massages first. There was a booth where you could get naked sensual massages. This is my dream come true. Just in case anyone reading this wants to know how best to seduce me, offer me a massage and I’m yours. Immediately, I took off all my clothes and let the half-naked, bear masseur do his best. This was well worth the $130 price of admission.
Jonny and I were both naked now. We were laughing and high off the pure craziness that everywhere around us people were now fucking. The sex had gone beyond the playrooms and people were screwing on the dance floor. A hot nurse was getting eaten out on a medical table rolled out to the middle of the party. Without even thinking about what I was doing, I went over and started sucking on her breasts. I know it might sound naïve, or maybe even shy, that this was all I did, but it was the perfect amount of action for me and I loved it. Chemistry was a helluva party and I would go back without a question.
It was definitely due to my great time that, upon leaving, this thought entered my head: “Chemistry is totally the type of place I would take a boyfriend.” Now, that’s purely hypothetical because I haven’t actually gotten past a third date in years. Yet it certainly ought to help my fear of monogamy if there was room for a place like Chemistry in my future relationship. I just feel that if I could go somewhere with my partner and mix it up with some really hot peeps, live out my fantasy a little and then let that fantasy heat up the bedroom at home. . .then why not? Especially because Chemistry isn’t the kind of place where anyone is going to make a long lasting connection. It’s only about sex, so you don't have to worry about your partner falling in love with someone else and leaving you.
So while in some ways Jonny was great to bring—he’s hilarious and obviously very chivalrous—I wish I’d brought someone I was dating to the party. Chemistry is the perfect instigator for the first fuck with someone you’ve newly started seeing. I might not want to hook up with strangers, but watching people screw live is a huge turn on for me. And so, once I got home that night, I couldn't help but think about how great it would have been to get it on with a date. Instead, Jonny and I stripped off all our clothes and fell into the platonic spoon position known all too well to close friends. Though lovely, it was the least sexy thing about the night.
Like I said before, taking a boyfriend to an orgy is purely a hypothetical for me. I have no real idea how I would feel about seeing my boyfriend fucking someone else in front of me. But the party was so hot I just wanted to share it with everyone I loved and, especially, someone I was having sex with. Maybe next time.
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