Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Just Your Average Swingers

Barbara: I had to work in a stranger’s house the other day. A whole slew of us were hosted by this gorgeous, maybe late 60s woman (age guessed at not by looks—which were FABULOUS—but by age of grown children) and her husband. Well, their place was heavenly, set in a garden-oasis, beautifully manicured, eclectic taste, photos and paintings covering every square inch of wall. The whole place just had a kind of cozy charm. To top that off, the host and hostess watched our work-related shenanigans with elegant grace, only occasionally sidling over to chit-chat and answer our myriad questions about the up-keep of such a magical property as well as proffering photo albums that showed the garden in its various beautiful states and garden-parties filled with happy revelers. It was all so, I don’t know … idyllically normal?? 

But then! Near the end of the day, I had a quiet moment to really look at some of the photos that lined the MAIN hallway—through which, remember, dozens of strangers had already trod––and, yes, there were several of the requisite photos with children and grand-kids and black-and-whites of yesteryear—but smack in the middle of all these, with a true “place of honour” so to speak, was a very large framed photo-collage filled with several images of our gentle host and hostess and their friends in what I can only describe as full swinger-mode! She in hot pants and bikini top, thigh-high suede boots, he (and several of the men) wearing their ladies’ bras. Lots of dancing in the photos, but the grinding kind, you know with (clothed) crotches in people’s faces. Two-on-one kind of action. You get the picture. 

It was one of those stop-you-in-your-tracks moments—where the superficial idea you had of someone suddenly shifts dramatically. Not just because of the swinging, mind, but thanks to the unadulterated (no pun intended) joy in sharing their private fun with all who enter their home—even complete strangers! It kinda made me jealous. Not the swinging part—that’s not my scene—but their freedom from the constraints of “normal” (“normal” in this dictionary meaning that most people wouldn’t necessarily collage and frame their excesses, then hang them in the entrance hall for all to see). And yet these two were all the best parts of “normal”: gracious, kind, and benevolent. As you can see, the whole “affair” really fascinated me! Oh, the many faces of regular life! 

Deb: I love it––photo of the great-great-grandparents, a christening, a grad, some swingers, a baby photo ...”One of these things is not like the others!” Boys and girls, can you find the one that doesn’t fit?


  1. This is hysterical.

    I like being outside the constraints of normal, though I don't roll the way of the swinger, I have been known to throw strange and extravagant parties. (been awhile though)

    And I love sharing my pics with others.

    I think this experience that you had shows us, pardon the cliche, how you really can't judge a book by its cover. Inside us all may lurk a "swinger" of some sort. LOL

  2. Be proud of who you are, I guess... lol. :P I wish I had some really crazy pictures of myself to put on my walls.

    (Oh btw, I went and got myself a blog. XD)

  3. I love to see how different people were back them and how they are now. I know people that have pictures up and they are just look so wild but then when you meet them it's just amazing how much they have changed. I think that this is where the saying "Don't judge a book by it's cover" comes into place. Cause you never really know what kind of person they really are, and older photos expecially old photos like you talk about in the review can really tell you something about a person or story. It really is inestering if you give it a chance and really look at it.

  4. At this point in my life (age 37), one of my greatest regrets is that I did NOT have a misspent youth.

    Swinging's not my thing, but I like the comfortable, no regrets perspective of the people in that home! They were who they were and are who they are and do not try to "keep face." Good for them!

    Hmmmmmm, I'll be 44 when my son graduates from high school and I get to begin Life 2.0. Y'all know the old saying, "If I knew then what I know now..."? Well, at that point, I WILL know and can do things in a far more alive and adventurous way (as opposed to being a rigid, uptight, perfectionistic "good girl"). Just gotta figure out how to jive this with the whole Christian thing. Hmmmm....

    I do wonder, though, if the lovely people in that house would be comfortable seeing photographic evidence of that sort of behavior out of their children or grandchildren. Maybe, maybe not. I find myself being very curious about their parenting styles. It would be cool to get their perspectives on things.

  5. Hey all! Yeah, I really think the book/cover sense hit home for me in this experience. And that book proved to me there are so many vagaries in telling a good, honest story!

    For Lyndsie and Rigel -- just an fyi: the swinging pics were taken when this couple seemed to be in their mid-fifties. So good on them. And from the other pics we saw, they had 2 spectacular-looking daughters in their 30s with the most incandescent smiles I've ever seen who had young children -- all of whom would have spent much time in this house admiring these tell-tale photos. I'm tellin' ya, from my (very far off) vantage point, they seemed like an amazing, loving, warm family.

    Rigel: life 2.0! Let the party begin!!

  6. Let's have a party like that. Oh, come on! :)


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