Larry’s View

Larry’s view on any and everything.

poolside protocols

poolside protocols
By Alvin Tan
 
Fridae’s pool princess, Alvin Tan, plunges into the wet, wet world of gay swimming pools and offers readers some poolside protocols on how to attract and reel-in that hunk-in-trunks.
 
 
“Look at this trove Treasures untold
How many wonders can one cavern hold?”
– “Part Of Your World”, The Little Mermaid

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It has always been my belief that every gay man will undergo a trial-by-water into homohood by dipping his toes into the chlorinated waters of the local gay swimming pool. Anyone who claims otherwise is either lying through his teeth, afflicted with hydrophobia or suffering from the last stages of Alzheimer’s.

And it has also always been my belief that at the back of their minds, gay men have always fantasised about emerging from the pool looking dazzling and dripping wet a la Halle Berry in James Bond: Die Another Day, or for the older generation, Ursula Andress in Dr. No.

So one hot afternoon while I was watching my Surf Surf Revolution collection, I was seized by an urge to put on my Speedos, slap on sun block and swan around a pool with more style than those America’s Next Top Model (Season 7) contestants when they had to do the catwalk on a runway suspended on water.

It was there and then that I decided to revisit my favourite gay swimming pool at Yio Chu Kang and reclaim my place in the buffed and baked crowd – where gay men complete or pretend to complete a couple of lackluster laps around the pool but are really more concerned with checking out the hunks-in-trunks.

As I was walking towards an empty deck chair, I was greeted by shouts of “Casper! Casper!” from a group of excited children frolicking in the pool. I returned their compliments with my Windsor wave and must confess to being pleasantly surprised that my resemblance to Casper Van Dien of Starship Troopers was so apparent even to Oompa-Loompas.

(Editor’s Note: Oh please. They were probably referring to your striking resemblance to Casper The Friendly Ghost because of your alabaster-white skin.)

Settling down in my signature Mermaid side-prone position, I quenched my thirst with a few sips from my Disney Princess canteen bottle before peering over my issue of Cosmopolitan to discreetly survey the swim scene around me. As a testament to my phenomenal powers of observation, I immediately detected two discernible trends.

Firstly, gay men appeared to have a preference for trunks in shades of red (how hot!), white (how revealing!) and other neon colours (how blinding!) – all in kids’ sizes. Secondly, gay men appeared to have bladders the size of birdseeds – I lost count of the number of times they would leave the pool or deck chairs and head for the shower room.

Equally obvious to my well-trained (and mascara-ed) eyes, was the cock-teasing courtship happening all around me which brought to my mind a documentary I once caught entitled “Sex Lives of Birds”. Like the mating rituals of peafowls, cruising at pools likewise involves puffing out one’s chest, strutting around “cockily” and showing off your wares – except that the recipients in this case are not peahens but fellow peacocks.

Having said that, cruising at gay swimming pools is really no different than cruising at your favourite homosexual haunt – except that you can easily suss out the sizes of the packages on display. The most basic technique is to use eye contact to indicate interest and transmit a jolt of sexual desire to the swim stud your gaydar has locked onto.

A direct and lingering look (the operative word here is “lingering”) into his eyes will convey your interest almost immediately. If he holds your gaze, you may reward him with a coy smile and if he returns your smile, proceed to introduce yourself or if you are well prepared like yours truly, you can whip out your laminated name card at this point.

(Disclaimer: The “look-hold-and-smile” technique will only work if you do not have your goggles on [when you’re in the pool] and your Jackie O shades on [when you’re sunbathing on the deck chairs].)

For the more daring dudes who prefer to cruise while doing the breaststroke (or whatever swim strokes you prefer), it is common courtesy to wait until your tan target has completed his laps and is taking a breather. Trust me, you do not want to scare him off by chasing after him like a heat-seeking torpedo.

Swim up next to him only when he is resting by the side of the pool. Wait for a few minutes before slowly inching your way sideways towards him. You may then wish to “accidentally” brush against his arm or leg to initiate some skin-on-skin contact and observe his reaction.

If he flinches away as if he had been scalded by an industrial steam iron, then it’s time to swallow your pride and swim away. If he pretends not to notice or turns to smile at you, then you may ascend to new levels of boldness and proceed with “accidental” brushes against his more private appendages (blush!).

Yet however sexciting the idea of underwater groping may be, always remember that swimming pools are still public spaces so do behave with discretion and decorum. Keep your homo-hormones in check unless you wish to scandalise other pool users and get thrown out of the pool by homophobic lifeguards.

Having said that, it is common knowledge that the most stellar swim sexperiences occur not in the pool or by the poolside but in the shower room where men and more men walk around either in trunks (drools!), with a short sports towel wrapped around their waists (swoons!) or in the buff showing off distinct tan-lines (faints!).

Cruising in the shower room usually takes place at the urinals and in the shower cubicles. For instance, if the guy at the urinal beside you finishes his golden stream but doesn’t pack up his hose and leave, or better still, keeps looking down at your dripping dick, you know he’s definitely interested in an amorous adventure.

When showering in cubicles, watch out for the universal “I’m-interested-in-you” sign which involves foot-tapping. If the sexy swimmer in the shower cubicle next to yours slides his foot under the cubicle divider and starts tapping away, you can be pretty sure he’s looking to join you for some “lather-release-and-rinse” shower action.

However, always bear in mind that sex in public places – gay swimming pools included – is against the law. If you choose to play in public, exercise common sense, know what you can and cannot get away with, and know what your legal rights are. And if you think “It won’t happen to me,” well, I have just two words for you: George Michael.

Finally, remember that cruising at pools is ultimately a game of chance: you try your best to attract someone or someone tries his best to catch your eye (and hopefully, your cock too) but that doesn’t mean you’ll always go home with a prized catch.

And if you don’t, try not to get your wet trunks into a twist and hang out at the poolside for hours until you resemble a dehydrated sunburnt prune. Rather, console yourself with the knowledge that at least you manage to get a tan and work on your swim strokes.

(Editor’s Note: Fridae would like to remind all readers to practice safe sex and to share their most memorable sexperiences at your local gay swimming pools below.) ae

September 26, 2007 - Posted by | Blogroll, Gay Issue & Rights-Overseas

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