February 2007


La Demence in Brussels

By random chance, my surprise meeting in Brussels was the same weekend as La Demence, a monthly themed gay party. This month’s theme was “thugs” – so I decided to let my beard grow out for a day (I looked like a member of the mafia), wear a fake diamond (magnetic) ear-ring, and a black t-shirt.

For all of my effort, I might as well not have bothered.

Everybody else wore what they would probably wear to any one of La Demence’s monthly gay dance parties—ranging from nothing (except a cock cage) to fabulous drag (not too much of that). I imagine that next month at the “Country Boy” event, men will show up wearing exactly what they wore this time. I would too—I wouldn’t bother buying overalls and finding a piece of grass to stick in the pocket.

I got there a few minutes before 11p and the cover charge increase—so for 10€ I was in; 1,50€ later my coat was checked; and 3€ later I had a non-descript beer in my hand whilst watching the empty dance floor. It wasn’t long before the dance floor was crowded (I joined) and then packed.

For some reason, I identified a few people who stood out for whatever reason—cute, funny clothing, whatever—and then I kept seeing them throughout the whole night. One of the first people I identified as being cute—what I called the “hot guy on the dance floor”—was tall, with a bit of stubble, and wearing a fabulous white shirt that looked good on him. He seemed to have a few friends and, in the time I was watching him did not once light a cigarette. All of which made me think warm fuzzy thoughts—until, well….

Over the last few years my opinion about marijuana has changed. Certainly it is not for me—I have no interest in smoking pot myself, but if people I respect seem to be able to smoke it and not turn into driveling idiots then maybe it’s ok. However, I have had no such shift in my thoughts about harder drugs like cocaine, and I certainly do not want somebody who uses coke to be involved with me.

It was a downer—and I sought refuge in the about to open second dance floor, whose DJ was spinning tunes that were more mellow and relaxing—in a space that was not boiling hot. I shifted between the two dance floors—depending upon how (physically) hot I was feeling for the next couple of hours.

At some point I found the darkroom area and a smaller bar.

Clearly, this was the place to be. Everybody was crammed into these rooms. How anybody found room to unzip their pants, never mind pulling them down and bending over, is beyond me—but either they managed or there were a lot of fake sex sounds going on around me and a moist humid spot on my blue jeans was the result of a mini-rain storm set off by the sauna-like conditions of the room. I kid you not—stepping in the door I started sweating like a pig. The temperature had to be at least 100°F (37°C), with matching humidity.

One couldn’t move forward or backward without stepping on toes and rubbing up against four or five other people.

Amusingly, as I was analyzing the situation, somebody was checking me out and wanted to hook up with me in the less-dim dark room. (Not that any of the spaces I got into were really dark, I did see some spaces that were genuinely dark, but I couldn’t get near them and because the high temperatures were making me feel uncomfortable, I opted against trying to make my way into those spaces.) Unfortunately, this was about the time I was interested in find anywhere where the temperature was lower—so I departed for one of the dance floors and a 3€ bottle of water.

Overall La Demence is the most diverse, in terms of gay-male types, event I’ve ever attended. Whilst I suppose the severe sanctimonious morally upright faggots were under-represented, I did see leather, flamboyant, Asians, Blacks, Jews (Star of David, on a chain), nudes, older, younger, etc… enjoying themselves. The crowd, overall, was fun and moving. There were even a few cute men in there—although the type of men I am attracted to were under-represented.

Maybe I’ll try to land in Brussels for a La Demence event in the future—however, Brussels is hard to get to from Weimar, and, overall, while it is not as expensive as London, it is an expensive city. Also, and unfortunately, once you get beyond food, Brussels is not really an interesting city.

5 comments to La Demence in Brussels

  • Ed

    I never heard of this Dark Room concept but it sounds interesting while being dangerous and exciting and crowded all at once.
    I think you made a very wise choice to avoid the Cocaine crowd. I believe it is a downward spiral from which there is no escape.

  • Ed, Dark Rooms are fairly common in gay clubs — although in some parts they might be illegal for health reasons. Dark Rooms are seen by many as encouraging unsafe sex — although I saw “graffiti” in La Demence’s dark room that encouraged using condoms–and in some spots the only available light was from condom dispensers that were lit-up.

    I’ve seen dark room in Prague, London, and Brussels — in gay dance clubs.

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