Thanks to “Fifty Shades of Gray,” my 59-year old mother Asian mother is calling me up and openly musing on “what would be a good safe word that your father won’t forget?”

DC’s Secret History of Orgies



Thanks to “Fifty Shades of Gray,” my 59-year old mother Asian mother is calling me up and openly musing on “what would be a good safe word that your father won’t forget?” (I suggested “Obamacare.”) So in light of this unprecedented atmosphere of sexual openness (and, yes, Valentine’s Day this weekend), let’s delve into the seedy group-sex underside of the District. “What seedy group-sex underside,” you probably just muttered to yourself. Well, it seems that while the rest of us were brunching, falling asleep on the metro, and buying four-dollar oranges at Whole Foods, a whole other segment of DC citizens were silently and sweatily orgyin’! What?



You are probably not following the trial, in France, of Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who was the French version of a combination Bill Clinton/Alan Greenspan, a charismatic politician and economist who was repeatedly tripped up by his own pants, because they were often down around his ankles. (You may remember him as the guy accused of sexually assaulting a maid in NYC; the case was settled out of court.) DSK (as he’s known in France) is now on trial for being involved (allegedly) in a prostitution ring and a related series of orgies. The proceedings have seen some incredibly lurid details come to light – but lost in all this is one detail of particular interest to us; some of the orgies took place right here in DC! But where? All the news reports say is “a luxury hotel.”

DSK was head of the IMF, and a foreigner; as any longtime DC resident knows, all these foreign functionaries have their go-to hotels. There’s a Texas oilmen hotel, a Nigerian businessmen hotel, a Japanese diplomat hotel, et cetera. These hotels usually have a symbiotic relationship with whatever agency they cater to; the agency steers their guests to these hotels, and the hotels often discreetly advertise their amenability to certain personnel. Point is, when you Google “IMF luxury hotel,” a specific hotel comes right up. There’s even a French flag on the homepage, along with a picture of a distinctly Euro-y concierge, grinning half-lidded and unjudgmentally, as if to say, “another 36-pack of condoms? I’ll have them sent right up, sir.” On the other hand, these rooms don’t exactly scream “orgy atmosphere.” Too much light, not enough red velvet. Though maybe I’m not up on the latest orgy aesthetics. (I should ask my mom.) I mean – kitchenettes? I feel like looking up during a sex act and seeing a Foreman grill would sort of kill the vibe. Then again, orgyin’ is probably exhausting work. Maybe a little break for tomato soup and saltines at the two-hour mark is the way to go.

I called this hotel up and said to the fellow who answered, “I’m investigating a report that your hotel was the site of Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s DC orgy?” He gently hung up the phone. I’m not saying that proves anything, but let’s say you were at dinner with your significant other, and you were like, “hey, so are you having an affair with that blonde in Marketing?” And they just stood up and walked away. I think we all know what that means. Orgy hotel.



Yes, you read that correctly. A pig sex orgy. It’s not what it sounds like though. At first, I thought, like you, that this was an orgy with actual pigs, which is disgusting, yes, but also the sort of thing that makes for supreme dinner party anecdotes. (“Have I ever told you all about the time I fornicated with a sow?”) But no, according to Urban Dictionary, it’s just, like, disgusting sex. (As if there’s any other kind!)  The “pig sex orgy” was a debauched adult party planned to coincide with Obama’s inauguration was derailed by Christian activists. It’s actually a sad and quintessentially American story; when activist groups such as “Americans for the Truth About Homosexuality” caught wind of the impending pig sex orgy (via leaked emails), they bombarded the Hilton (where the pig sex orgy was scheduled to be held) with angry emails until the Hilton canceled the event. Why did the activists care so much? Good question. But no pig sex was had that inauguration weekend, at least not at the Doubletree Hilton in Washington DC. Sad.

Of course, the organizers’ biggest mistake was trying to have it at the Doubletree Hilton conference room. Did none of the participants have a basement they could’ve hosted in? A spare bedroom? Jesus, just throw down some tarps. I don’t think I could participate in an orgy in a conference room where there’ve been so many PowerPoint presentations. It’d be like sleeping in a hotel room where someone was brutally murdered. That kind of thing lingers. Then again, DSK allegedly had sex in his office at the IMF, which, you know, probably has fluorescent lighting.



A Google search for “DC orgy” brings up old Eventbrite pages for a series of orgies during Howard homecoming in 2012, put on by “” Three orgies in three days! That’s a lot of orgyin’. I feel like chafing would be an issue. These might not have been the best planned orgies; the first clue is that they started at 1pm. Really? Right after lunch? Even if I go to, like, Sweetgreen, I don’t stop belching until 4PM. On the other hand, skipping lunch the day of an orgy seems unwise. If anything, seems like you’d want to carb-load before an orgy, like marathoners. I dunno, who has daytime orgies? I feel like kicking things off before sunset is the orgy faux pas equivalent of keeping your socks on. Maybe that’s why they only sold two tickets. (Yes, two.)

Who were the organizers? Unclear. I went to the website and all there is on the front page is a poorly-edited video of a scantily-clad paint-covered model exhaling smoke in slow motion, accompanied by a generic hip-hop instrumental. This could mean literally anything. Is “Pusherz” a clothing line? A rap collective? A marketing company? A video production service? I’m stumped. I’m trying to think of some kind of business model where throwing orgies during Howard homecoming would be a viable marketing plan. Maybe the CEO of Pusherz is Dominique Strauss-Kahn? (Would you be surprised?)



I once attended a sex party here in DC, with a voyeuristic ex-girlfriend, but there is literally no detail I can share with you that’s less than x-rated. You’ll have to ask me about it next time you see me in public (and buy me a drink).

By Franklin Schneider


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