Undercover With The Adonian Society

As homosexual scandal returns to the Tories this week, we look back at The Tab’s investigation into the secretive society which dare not speak its name…

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Secret societies. Everyone’s heard the rumours, everyone knows they exist but no one knows quite what’s involved. That is, until one well-informed insider decides to spill the beans. Hello, my dear Adonians.

Based on a lovely Greek legend about a hot young fellow called Adonis courted by older men, this society becomes much less creepy when we find out that its based on a group of homosexual fellows and staff members taking gay undergraduates to elaborate dinner parties twice a term replete (according to my insider) with ‘thigh slapping, knee squeezing and innuendos’. So far, so sleazy.

The actual dinner itself is a grandiose five course affair based in Peterhouse. The excitable undergrads are taken first for a drinks reception at a suitably upmarket venue which changes per meal; my dear friend began his night at Hotel Du Vin but for drinks it all depends on how the wind takes the fellows in charge (oooh, bad pun). Dress is black tie, of course, with guests given a pink flower when they enter the venue so you can identify who else will be joining you for the later debauchery. After a suitable amount of networking you’ll be invited by a man dressed in full-on top and tails to go down to dinner. And this is where things get interesting.

Seated student-fellow-student-fellow, there is plenty of room for back scratching, contact making and shameless flirting. A smoking break between main and dessert provides the first opportunity for some ‘hands on’ experiences. Outside it’s pitch black so that only the tips of lighted cigarettes are visible, while some more adventurous members of the society disappear into the bushes for a little further education. There’s a seat rotation on return to the dining hall to save any red faces after those few, ahem, beautiful moments in the shrubbery. It’s when the coffee is served that those who had a less enjoyable smoking break get a second chance. Lights are turned off in favour of candles; you can still see, but should you wish for some privacy all you need to do is blow gently, and your corner of the room will be plunged into darkness. I’m told within minutes more candles were blown out than left on, and though no one mentioned it, it was beyond clear that a lot was going on in that room.

For some undergrads the whole experience is just too much; for example, one fresher who drank too much to cure his nerves was found at 7 am the following morning by cleaners, having collapsed in a toilet the night before. My friend, however, was much more competent, making his way back to a fellows’ apartment with four other dinner guests. There’s no happy ending however as a chance meeting in Sainsburys’ later that term led to awkward glances and shuffling off by both parties.

Aside from these twice termly dinners, the May Week champagne breakfast is supposedly the most risqué of the Adonian events. In the words of my insider, ‘scrambled eggs and blow jobs’. Interesting combination. Also interesting is the rumour of one former conservative MP and ex-Adonian, whose name I’ll spare for legal purposes. Legend has it he lost his virginity to a man at one of these dinners, a mere three doors down from a room in Peterhouse where he lost his virginity to a woman. And they say cabinet ministers are boring. Disclaimer: note the word RUMOUR there, heard purely on the grapevine, so no defamation actions please.

So if following this expose you’re keen to attend such an event, forget the stories of notes in your pidgeonhole. It really is all about knowing the right people, so Tuesday LBGT night at Revs- network, network, network. You’ll never know where you might end up. It costs £50 to attend an Adonian dinner but lets face it, it’s not something you’re likely to be able to experience anywhere else any time soon. But then maybe you wouldn’t want to. I’m not one to judge.