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"BY SATURDAY WE'RE FUCKING IN SOHO HOUSE"

Our anonymous writer "Farah Haze" matched with a 50-year-old filmmaker and the rest is a juicy story.


Writer: "Farah Haze"

Illustration: Marta Braga


I didn’t know his age when we matched on tinder. My range was set to 28–45, so I’m not entirely sure how he snuck in, the 50-year-old filmmaker who super liked me on a Monday. But in a way it was a gift from the tinder gods, during that early winter period in Berlin where isolation creeps in and the apps turn into frenzied hunting grounds for a winter lover. You know, someone to keep you warm, distract you from existential dread and go down on you while you watch Netflix.


We’re a cliche. Me: a lost late 20-something searching for adventure, success and self actualisation, and getting suitably side-tracked in this city. Tired of dating my usual cocktail of malnourished club boys and guys who weaponise polyamory as an excuse to be a shitty person. Him: successful, whiplash smart, the son of a literal billionaire. A total daddy, basically. He seems to gravitate toward women half his age, and doesn’t pretend not to be insanely horny for me for one minute. Which, given the mass insouciance of the city’s dating population, is strangely refreshing.


We meet late Friday and have what you could call a whirlwind weekend. We stay up talking until the bars close that morning and make out in the street. By Saturday we’re fucking in Soho House (did I mention we’re a cliche?). It isn’t purely carnal. Fueled by wine and a shared neediness for connection, we talk a lot. We indulge in each other’s messy breakup stories and conceive a half-baked plot to assassinate the 1%. I speak of feeling lost and he slips in the success of his films, which he does mostly with an admirable restraint. (Other than revealing he’s on first name terms with a certain ‘Brad’; “Well, there is only one Brad,” he offers when I laugh at the absurdity.) He tells me he recently started taking ecstasy. So I hatch another plan: get guestlist for Berghain, and prepare for a great story.


“Anyone with a vague knowledge of the city’s nightlife and its pleasure-seeking corners will be familiar with the ways we like to gain or lose control.”

Anyone with a vague knowledge of the city’s nightlife and its pleasure-seeking corners will be familiar with the ways we like to gain or lose control. Moving away from the classic sub/dom set-up, we bestowed new roles on ourselves for the night: the ‘driver’ and the ‘passenger’. The dynamic isn’t necessarily sexual you see, and it’s a fun game, you should try it. One person is the general decision maker of the evening and the other is free to coast along for the ride. The driving seat suits those with a specific vision for how things unfold or a nervous disposition for things to be just right. They can do whatever they please without the nuisance of having to negotiate. The passenger on the other hand gets the gift of not having to make decisions.


“...scheduling toilet breaks, drinks, drug ingestion, snogs, etc. amidst the sea of sweaty bodies in the peak hours of a busy Klubnacht. ”

It can be a rare luxury to feel truly mindless, free from the daily tyranny of having to know what you want. Seeing it that way, I’m not exactly thrilled to be anointed driver, but I bravely take it on. Or at least, give it my best shot. I secure entry for Sunday, instruct him to meet by the doors at 9pm and intend to continue calling the shots inside – when and where we dance, scheduling toilet breaks, drinks, drug ingestion, snogs, etc. amidst the sea of sweaty bodies in the peak hours of a busy Klubnacht.


I feel momentarily smug when my guestlist slips us in with ease. It’s closing night, pre-chaos. The pit of tweaked party people is heaving. But not too packed; buying a drink or peeing is a fucking ordeal, but it’s not busy enough yet to feel airless and overwhelming at every turn. At the cloakroom I strip down to a mesh bra and collar (the most BDSM-adjacent outfit I could muster, on his request). He’s left with a grey tee and jeans, from which he pulls a rope he brought, unsolicited, to tie me up. At this point I realise we might have had different visions for the night.


Dr. Rubinstein plays throbbing techno on the main floor. The walls drip and the reliably toned muscles of the Sunday night crowd glisten. He takes his top off, shimmies towards me with impeccable dad-dancing and keeps reaching for my pussy over my trousers. I’m just not a natural exhibitionist, so I’m tense, and I need a drink. How was I already losing my grip? I try and take it back, order us Campari sodas and initiate a pill. I come up in the purgatory of the neverending toilet queue, complaining softly to strangers about how I’m coming up in the toilet queue, as the doors melt in my vision.


“Just as I’m settling into it, stroking daddy’s chest against a pillar, a familiar hand finds my shoulder.”

But it’s the perfect dose, making us dreamy and mildly euphoric. He ties the rope around his own neck in a symbolic gesture of surrender, but continues to subtly take the lead. My self consciousness briefly slips away when I’m pressed up against the edge of the dance floor, and he insists on peeling down my bra and grazing his teeth on my nipples. I wonder how much of the game is letting me think I have control. Then, a car crash. I spot another lover swarming around with a jaw flexing like it’s been here for some time, and I’m desperate to avoid his gaze. I haul us up to Panorama Bar, where bodies spring on the blue-lit dance floor and you can feel cocaine in the air. We bump into friends of mine who gracefully skip over the question of how the pair of us met. Just as I’m settling into it, stroking daddy’s chest against a pillar, a familiar hand finds my shoulder. The other lover. Broken out of my lull, my heart drops. After a painfully awkward exchange I pull the breaks, drag daddy to a booth by the bar, and decide to assess the damage another time.


“I think about how clubbing lets us chase the illusion of control, just like drugs, like tinder, like my date tonight"

I’ve been a bad driver. Disappearing in toilet queues, meekly hustling for drinks at the bar, second-guessing where to park us on the dancefloor. Attempts to summon a certain experience can have a way of backfiring on you, and it was one of those nights where you find unexpected friction between you and the untempered hedonism at your feet. Now I’d completely lost control of the wheel. And the passenger’s getting angsty. So I let him direct the scene, which mainly involves seducing me in front of onlookers. So far, so predictable, but I relax into our performance, some playful grinding and slapping and kissing. Then he starts moving his mouth from my nipples to my armpits, giving them long wet licks. It’s all hilariously surreal. This time I don’t freeze up, but laugh and admit to myself I had lost the war of wills. I failed to be the architect of my initial Berghain fantasy, and submitted to the whims of his. Head back, I think about how clubbing lets us chase the illusion of control, just like drugs, like tinder, like my date tonight – all delirious games that can offer a momentary distraction from existential dread, or enhance the power struggles of the outside world.


We leave around 4am, back to Soho House. We restart the engine and hope we can keep our hands on – or off – the wheel long enough to reach our desired destination. OK, now that’s enough cliche.

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