überlin

Berlintercourse: My first sex party

by Guest Blogger

You all know by now that my quest for new experiences knows no bounds, so you’ll probably only be half surprised to learn that I recently attended my very first sex party.

It all started during one of my Sundays spent dancing the day away at Berghain. I met a fairly good-looking guy, and our conversation turned quickly and naturally towards sex. Before I knew it we were comparing our number of Tinder matches and sexual partners. I mentioned this upscale sex party I’d heard of, and my new companion told me about a secret one happening regularly in Berlin. He suggested we go together and, without hesitation, I said I’d love to.

Fast-forward a few weeks, and this guy is telling me that he’s arranged for us to attend the next edition of this secret sex party. But as this is Germany, I still had to submit an official application full of disappointingly pedestrian getting-to-know-you type questions, and include a photo of myself. I nervously waited for a reply, and felt like I had won the lottery when I finally received an email welcoming me to this very special club.

It was a fancy dress party, so I spent a few days carefully planning my perfect outfit. I tried to look my ultimate sexy self, in my most slimming high-waisted thong and a transparent mesh crop top. But when I entered the venue, I found that most people seemed more interested in looking fun and artsy than hot. Just as I was wondering, “how come everyone is wearing more clothes than I am?” a girl walked past wearing nothing but a pearl thong, immediately making me feel better about my revealing outfit.

We grabbed our first drinks and scanned the main room, a vast space that nonetheless fostered an intimate atmosphere. I remember anticipating the moment that it would start being all about sex. Was there going to be some kind of signal? Right now, it looked like a large group of old friends catching up and having a regular night out.

Well, except for the guy proudly displaying a drill with a dildo attached to it. He was a non-threatening old bear, but I couldn’t help feeling a little violated when we pointed that thing at me. I sought refuge in the smoking area, always a good place to meet new people. Little did I know I was about to make my first almost faux pas.

I had brought fortune cookies to share and decided to hand them out to the smokers sat next to me on a worn-out couch. After everyone had read out loud what was written on their strip of paper, someone asked, “So, what did you get?”

“Mine says ‘You will have good health’, which I’m happy to hear considering my flatmate just told me that he has chlamydia!” Everyone went silent for a minute, and that’s when I recognised that this might not be the best place to joke about STDs. Then everyone started laughing, and I realised that I might have stumbled on the perfect ice-breaker. Phew!

After a few more drinks, I was approached by a young man who told me: “The first thing I noticed upon entering the room is your butt.” Given what I was wearing, this came as no surprise. He offered me wine and told me he wanted me to meet somebody, before walking off towards a girl who was chatting with somebody else.

He interrupted her to point at me and whisper something into her ear. Then they both walked my way and stood around me. She was his girlfriend and they attended this party with the sole purpose of finding girls to have threesomes with. I actually even got to meet the girl they had hooked up with at a previous party, which I guess was weird – but it takes a lot more than that to make me feel uncomfortable these days.

We flirted for a little while before they made it clear it was time to go to the other room – the darker one filled with mattresses placed on top of piles of euro-pallets. I couldn’t believe I was actually going to have my first threesome, after several missed opportunities, and I had no idea what to expect. Was it going to be awkward? Were they going to get busy with each other while leaving me out? How was my second time with a girl going to be? I had no idea, but we got undressed after making out for a little while. What happened next ended up being one of my best sexual experiences so far.

There I was, lying on my back, while a hot guy and a hot girl were making sure I had the time of my life. I never felt left out and I’m pretty sure neither of them did either. And the other people getting busy on the nearby beds hardly even registered with us. A very natural synergy arose and I kept on thinking, “I can’t believe this is finally was happening.”

Once we were done, we got dressed and I retrieved my shoes from a tangle of arms and legs on the opposite side of the room. I had one more drink with the couple and decided to finally hit the dance floor. The DJ had started playing ridiculous pop songs and the party was approaching its end. Unlike the “regular” music-oriented parties that Berlin is known for, this one was indeed set to finish promptly at 4 am.

I spent the rest of the night talking to other guests, save for a single detour back into the second room on the invitation of a friend. I was seriously impressed with how uncomplicated and easy-going the vibe was. It felt like a hippie, free love-inspired gathering – think more Burning Man than the Shortbus sex club scene.

I never would have predicted that this night would meet – let alone exceed – my expectations. After reading about Slutever and Chelsea Summer’s experiences, I wasn’t sure I’d do anything sexual even if I found myself in a similar situation. But I guess that after all this time I shouldn’t have been surprised to find out that, out of all the cities in the world, Berlin is the perfect place for these kind of liberal, experimental, mutually rewarding parties.

Can’t wait to read more? Follow Dating Disaster on Twitter for regular updates.

Radio überlin vol. 1

by James Glazebrook

 Untitled1

Welcome to episode 1 of Radio überlin! For our first ever radio show, Zoë and I sat down to shoot the shit about Felix da Housecat being turned away from Berghain and taking it no so well, as well as the line-up of the first ever Lollapalooza Berlin. We also answered a reader’s question about making the big move from California to Berlin, and played tracks by Iggy Pop, Beam Up, Losers, Phia, Jamaica Suk and Alec Empire. Tune into Berlin Radio International every Thursday evening from 8:30pm to hear more!

BRI – Radio überlin EP 1 – 05/03/2015 by Berlinri on Mixcloud

Berlintercourse: The ins and outs of dating in Berlin

by Guest Blogger

Dating in Berlin can be weird. I’d been warned before I moved here: “In Berlin findet man mehr Sex als Liebe”; “Everyone is single in Berlin”, etc. But I still had hopes that I would work it out – I even decided to make a challenge out of it. I mean, how could a young, fairly attractive and relatively intelligent girl like me stay single in a city full of hot, interesting and like-minded people? Unfortunately, it didn’t take me long to realise that things weren’t going to go as smoothly as I had expected.

I turned to my smartphone as soon as I arrived in Berlin, to make sure I wouldn’t lose too much time out of the game. I figured Tinder would be my best bet, as I didn’t have enough acquaintances or work colleagues to allow me to meet boys through friends. Little did I know that I was entering a world made almost exclusively of dates serving as both first and last encounter, plenty of shattered hopes and – here comes the silver lining – pretty awesome sex. It’s been over six months now and I still haven’t won the game. I have, however, learned some of the rules. And here’s tip number 1: don’t get indignant if you hear that the Berlin dating scene is insane. Just thank whoever was kind enough to warn you.

If you haven’t been greeted by a guy opening his apartment door with his balls hanging out, and a cock ring dangling between them, then how can you be sure that you’ve really lived?

Before you ask, yes, that did happen to me. But I’ll save that story for another time! Anyway, I’ve learned a lot over the past few months. I’ve gone from almost falling in love upon first meeting a guy to having blind sex dates with people I met through OkCupid and knew nothing about. Not necessarily because of Berlin, but because I had just got out of a four year relationship which had repressed what I would describe as mild nymphomaniac tendencies. And what’s wrong with that? I always make the guys wear condoms, I haven’t got pregnant yet and I’ve experienced my fair share of crazy stories.

My dating spree has introduced me to the good, the bad and the ugly of the Berlin dating scene. And no man that I’ve encountered has behaved in a way that could be described as remotely normal. I blamed online dating for this, until I stopped using dating apps for a month. To my horror, I realised that the men I met in the standard, pre-21st century fashion ended up behaving in an even more absurd way.

To give you an idea – I got dumped by this one guy I wasn’t even dating, by receiving a Whatsapp message at 7am on a Monday, as I lay in bed with a boy I’d met at Berghain.

We’d been to KitKatClub the Saturday before, and, after telling me we were absolutely going home together and convincing me to leave some of my clothes at his place, he got off his face on ecstasy and suddenly decided he wanted nothing more to do with me. In the meantime, he had actually introduced me as his girlfriend and asked what our rules were for the evening. We agreed that kissing strangers was fine, and that we would ask first if we wanted to actually sleep with anyone else. I guess it took him 24 hours to decide that the sensible thing to do would be to break up with me and dare to include the words “let’s stay friends” in his message – because why not, right?

Anyway, I’m looking forward to sharing all these fabulous encounters in even more excruciating detail. Stay tuned for a journey in the life of a desperately single Berliner trying to figure out the in and outs of this sex-obsessed city, one or two insane boys at a time.

Can’t wait to hear more? Follow Dating Disaster on Twitter for regular updates.

Berlin Stag Dos and Don’ts

by James Glazebrook

You may know them as stag dos, bucks nights or bachelor parties. We know them as a scourge on Berlin. Every time we fly back from the UK, we share an easyjet with at least one group of “lads” in t-shirts with a crudely drawn cock and balls on the front and a nickname (“TIGHTARSE”) on the back. As with most tourists, true Berliners like ourselves 😉 would prefer they stay away altogether. But if you are planning to invade our city to drown yourselves in beer and regret, please make sure to follow our Berlin Stag Dos and Don’ts.

DO stay out of our way

Rumour has it that the city is considering plans for an easystagvillage somewhere in Brandenburg, accessible by that international airport we might one day have. Of course, this is Berlin, so we expect those 100 acres of brothels and beer flumes to be completed some time in the 22nd Century. Until then, please restrict your movements to between Kreuzberg’s Schlesisches Strasse and the RAW complex in Friedrichshain. Oh, and get the fuck out of the bike lane, Arschloch!

DON’T try too hard

Forget the mankinis and matching slogan shirts in lurid colours. Here’s what you need to wear to stand out in Berlin: not black. In fact, you could be dressed in head-to-toe monochrome and we’d still be able to spot you a mile off, with your banter, your shit-eating grins and your sloppy drinking habits.

DO pace yourself

In Germany, beer is cheaper than water, and it’s a perfectly acceptable breakfast drink. Your only hope of making it to the queue for a club that you probably won’t get into is to pace yourself. Take our word for it: drinking a shandy (Radler) doesn’t make you “queer” – at least, no more than the enforced nudity and piss-drinking you’ll engage in after Beer 15.

DON’T book go-karting

Your taxi rides to and from the airport should provide plenty of high octane thrills and near misses. And, depending on the value you place on human life, they’ll work out cheaper too.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DO try to get into clubs

Go on, give us a laugh. The queue for Berghain is a big one, so we need some entertainment to pass the time. You lot will do, practising your shitty German and getting off with each other to appear acceptably gay. Who knows – maybe splitting up will work, and the bouncer won’t connect the 11 pink polo shirts dotted throughout the line? As long as you’re going to spend your nights stood outside of our clubs, we’ll be happy to see you try. Go on my son!

DON’T go to a strip club

The old excuse about your fiancée being the last woman you’ll ever see naked just doesn’t fly in this age of ubiquitous porn and Nicki Minaj videos. Besides, there’s precious little point in seeking out a strip club in a country whose mainstream media is smothered in naked breasts. If you want to see some tits, just turn on your hotel TV.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DO experiment

If this is your last night of freedom, why not go really wild? If, by some miracle, you make it into Berghain, you’ll be surrounded by gay guys in various stages of undress, who’ll be happy to show you more than that painting of an arsehole. Think of it like prison – whatever you get up to won’t leave these concrete walls, and it certainly doesn’t make you homosexual.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DON’T

Just don’t. The beer is cheap here, but this isn’t a piss-up paradise like Prague. The clubs are amazing, but that’s mainly because they don’t let people like you in. And Berliners won’t even attempt to conceal their contempt for you and everything you represent. If you’re looking for somewhere to remind yourself how shallow and depressing your single life has been, we can recommend our hometown, Newcastle upon Tyne. The locals will welcome you, speak (something close to) your language, and can’t wait to join in as you spill vomit, blood and no small amount of piss all over its streets. Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Music Montag: Redshape

by James Glazebrook

Redshape

Redshape by Passetti, under Creative Commons licence Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Here’s what I wrote on Bang Bang Berlin when I first encountered this masked man behind the decks in Berghain:

We’re fans of theatrics, and masks are a surefire way to get yourself seen and your music heard. Leaving our closeted love of Slipknot to one side, we’d like to shine a spotlight on Redshape. The Berlin-based techno head’s blood-coloured Michael Myers mask paradoxically marks him out against the city’s faceless producers and DJs, while maintaining an unsettling air of mystery.

Redshape (AKA Sebastian Kramer) recently revealed a little of the man behind his mask, with an XLR8R podcast that largely eschews his trademark tough techno in favour of some less-obvious influences. Alongside Carl Craig classic “Sandstorms” and tracks from the artist himself and fellow Berliner Plastikman, are Brian Eno and DJ Shadow – whose cinematic works bookend the mix – and leftfield inclusions like a cheesy lounge take on Jean Michel Jarre from Señor Coconut and the RZA‘s “Samurai Showdown”, from the Ghost Dog soundtrack. In fact, one of the few things Kramer gives away is that he’s a film nut: both Eno tracks come from Music for Films and the Shadow numbers include samples from Heat and Network. We’re glad he could tear himself away from his Beamer long enough to lay down such an unexpected and delightful mix.

Check out XLR8R Podcast 273: Redshape after the jump.

Music Montag: Brunchhain!

by James Glazebrook

Brunchhain
noun [brənʧ heɪn]
1. a big, boozy brunch followed by a trip to Berghain
2. the most fun you can have on a summery Sunday in Berlin

Yesterday was Big Fun for a couple of reasons. It was our first Brunchhain, and our friends Mike and Casey’s first ever trip to Berghain – and it certainly didn’t disappoint. To them, it looked just like the descriptions in our Inside Berghain post (club scene from Blade, techno Crystal Maze…) and sounded suitably apocalyptic:

Outside, it was a different wibe. We spent most of our first Brunchhain in the club’s summer garden, soaking up some rays, some sights (oh, the people watching!) and some warm house grooves, courtesy of Red D. The afternoon’s highlights were disco anthem “Don’t Leave Me This Way”, and the kind of Chicago classics that pepper D’s awesome Ron Hardy tribute mix:

I was a little disappointed that we missed Dinky, whose set was moved from Sunday to Saturday night at the last minute. Here’s the kind of mix I was hoping for from her, back-to-back soul and disco sweetness:

So let me add to the obvious things people say about Berghain: you have to go, and you have to go on a summery Sunday after a big, boozy brunch. In conclusion: BRUNCHHAIN!!!

Construction Noise – The Real Sound of Gentrifying Berlin?

by James Glazebrook

We’re always asking, what does Berlin sound like? Well, Slow Travel Berlin‘s recent interview with the intriguing Schneider TM provides one answer: Construction Sounds. The title of the electronic artist’s new album describes the field recordings that provide its backbone, the noise from the construction sites surrounding his home studio:

For around 8 or 9 years I’ve lived and worked in my former apartment, which was located in one of the most vibrant renovation areas in East Berlin. The noise of the construction sites literally took over my music and I just surrendered at some point. I started to record and play around with the sounds.

Sometimes abstract and haunting…

…and sometimes, noisy and oppressive…

Construction Sounds reminds me of Ostgun Ton’s Fünf compilation, a diverse set of tracks formed from Emika’s field recordings from inside Berghain. Emika’s one contribution as producer, “Cooling Room” turns the sounds and space of the cavernous club into a clanking, chiming musical sketch:

…all of which makes me wonder what a musician could do with our Berlin Sounds, the field recordings from around the city that you are contributing to our SoundCloud group. We have some ideas of our own, but why not listen to the clips below and let your imagination run wild – could you make music out of this?

Read the complete interview with Schneider TM over on Slow Travel Berlin.