I first heard the phrase "Dark Room" around 2005. A heinous Greek talk show host had invited a gay couple living abroad to talk about the wicked lifestyle of being gay.
Amazingly, the pair kept the conversation light and safe for an afternoon program despite being incredibly transparent and honest by the standards of Greek television.
The host asked all the horrible questions, including if their parents were proud of them, and then interrogated about dark rooms and their significance among the gays. The lovely pair acknowledged that anonymity is vital for many members of the community, and one of them recalled his "one" experience in a dark room.
"I couldn't see anything; some individuals were on slings. I decided to go back to my pals and dance."
In Greek, they used the word "swing" (κούνια) instead of "sling" so for years, I thought that in a dark room, the gays enjoyed swinging up and down, and if I was to ever be in one, I should take care not to be accidentally hit. Little did I know...
About 20 cocktails and ten years later, in a gay paradise called Sitges, my boyfriend asked if I'd ever been in a dark room. A couple of seconds later, I followed him into my first poorly lighted extravaganza.
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