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Nob Hill Theater and Steamworks Berkley - A trip to SFO


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Authors note: I am cross posting this on three different sites because I think it fits different threads on each, and I am too lazy to rewrite it each time. It's long so i am posting it over a couple of posts.




Cope with it.




Also, I realize this forum may not be as graphic as others. If the mods feel this is too inappropriate, please remove it. Though in all honesty I think a good description like this would be a good thing to have on this board.



Honestly, I am doing this to watch clouds, not to watch two porn stars screw each other on stage.




Right now I am sitting at FL390 (39,000 ft for the non initiated). I am on my way back home from San Francisco. I was there for three nights (which is a long trip for me – I usually do one or two night trips). It was certainly not my first time to the city, but this trip was different. After a while most o them blur together, but this was one of those trips where your whole mindset changes. Let me explain.




Seven or eight years ago, at least every other weekend, if not more, you could find me on a plane going somewhere. I love to fly. That is, when you can do it right. First Class. That used to be easy – I played the mileage game – I flew first class for what most people paid for coach. Unless you were weren’t a good shopper, then they probably paid more. But life got in the way, the flying game changed, and that life became just a memory. But the clouds – and the sun – still beckon, and every once in a while I still manage to take a nice trip.




A few weeks ago, I stumble upon some good deals to the west coast. I checked out what was going on, and naturally, I had to check out what was going on at the strip clubs. Lo and behold, the Nob Hill Theater was having their guest porn stars in to do a sex show – and they were featuring Jessie Colter. He is a power bottom and someone who I wanted to see perform. So I checked on flights to see what I could find. Lo and behold – American was flying the A332 between Philadelphia and San Francisco - and there were some great fares and upgrades available if I flew out of Boston and connected! I hadn’t been on a transcon in over two year, haven’t been in a lie flat seat in over a year. The flights were booked, hotel selected, and all was left to do was to find out how to entertain myself for a couple of days there.




To be honest most flights I will just sit therefor hours watching the clouds, staring by at the world passing down below. I think part of it has something to do with the fact that at 35,000 ft .the sun is always shining. It’s my happy place. Sometimes I will download an eBook, which will sit on my tablet for moths before even being opened. This time I downloaded something I found from one of these sites – All I Could Bare by Craig Seymour. It is the story of a guy who finds himself working as a stripper in D.C., first as a “research project”, and later as a chosen vocation.




I barely looked out the window the whole trip – one of the few books that I read straight through. Probably wouldn’t have if it was 2x2 seating, there was some more graphic descriptions in the book. But I had my own private cubby, and I was free to read – and to imagine. A brief synopsis of the book – Craig suddenly finds himself at a few strip clubs. He decides that he is going to take the chance to dancing, and finds an excuse in writing his thesis. Contrary to what you would expect, it turns out to be a rather positive experience. Instead of the drugs and booze and hopelessness, he finds dancers who strip because they it makes them feel good, he finds customers that become friends, and this whole, I guess you would call it a loose community of men who have managed to shake all their pretenses of the outside world and come to terms with who they are, both as dancers and as clientele. I won’t give the story away and let you read the book, but when I got off the plane and picked up Bart to my hotel downtown, my mind was racing. I wanted to head to the Nob Hill more than ever, but it was not just about seeing some guys cock. I wanted to see who these strippers really were.




The next morning I went to the MOMA. I guess I am just not an art person. There were a few things I liked, but most of it was just boring. There was this one painting which I swear had hidden image of Bill Clinton in it. But the painting was done in the sixties, so that made no sense. Probably just the uber-present pot smoke outside of Powell Street Station. Done with that in les than two hours, I headed up to Fisherman’s Warf, figuring I would grab an In-n-Out burger. But the line was out the door and down the street. Sorry, but their burgers are not THAT good. Time to find something else to do.




In my poking around on the Internet the night before, I saw that it was Bears at the Bath at Steamworks over in Berkeley. Now I am not a pretty guy. I am down a bit in weight – I am now under 300lbs, which may not be a big deal to you but for me that was a big accomplishment. But I still have man boobs the envy of any drag queen, a big belly and a paunch to match. Not to mention bad teeth and no hair. But I figured Bears afternoon would at least be a step in the right direction, I would be the only fat guy in a world of twinks. I decided at the last minute I would give it a try.

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This is not my first time at a bathhouse. I have gone a couple of times up in Toronto, and once at a place that no longer exists that may kinda sorta fit that description. All three times there where maybe a handful of people milling about;. I got an uber from the train station to Steamworks – when we arrived there was a line out the door. I started panicking. The driver (actually a really friendly young Nigerian guy) asked me what kind of place Steamworks was. I kind of sputtered out “it’s a club… for a certain clinetelle”. He looked at me oddly for second, until it dawned on him. He smiled, first in a kind of that’s funny way, and then in a kind of hey that’s cool kind of way. “Have a good time in there” he said and shook my hand. That gave me the confidence I needed to stand in line.




The guy in front of me in line was this skinny little kid. The couple behind me muttered something to the effect of “that is not what I thought a bear was”. As I walked up to the window and placed my wallet and hotel key in the safe deposit box, the attend noticed I was from the other side of the country and told me that I choose the right day and was really going to like it today. It made me feel better for a second, but I still had butterflies when he buzzed me in and gave me a towel. I headed to my locker half scared of who would be watching me, half excited about what kind of eye candy I was about to see.




At the time I didn’t think much of my adventures at the other bathhouse. I have hit that point in life where I have dropped a bit of my self-consciousness. That said I was still acutely aware that I was the biggest body there. But here, I rounded the corner to my locker, and there walking down the hall is a guy who had a good 25 pounds on me. He had a towel he was holding in his hands, completely comfortable with the idea of walking around nude. Now, when you get to be portly, one thing that happens is that your little friend down there tends to become something of a hermit. It gets dwarfed by the surround awesomeness that is a fat man’s stomach. This was always something I was ashamed of. In fact that was probably the one reason I never went to someplace like this before. I vividly remember a time a stripper I took back for a lapdance was trying to feel me up and asked “where is it?” when he didn’t find what he was looking for. He had failed to account for the paunch that got in the way and would have had to reach lower between my legs to find Krazy junior. The fact that he had failed ot make much impression on Krazy junior anyways didn’t help things.




But anyways, I just stood there looking. Which is in itself something totally liberating. I could look. I wasn’t going to get beat up for doing it. The worst that might happen was the guy would say something like no thanks. It was also just as possible that there would indeed be a beating, but of a totally different kind. And this was not the only guy there who wasn’t giving Adonis a run for his money. There was every sort of guy imaginable. Scrappy 80 year old guys who could barely walk, heavy twenty somethings, and yes there were the occasional very hot looking guys. Those were usually the guys who were the most self conscious, by the way. For once in my life, I was not the biggest guy in the room. I was floored - I was amazed - I was naked. I had forgotten to wrap my towel around my waist, and not a single person was disturbed by the idea. A few noticed, but only resulted in a quick smile. I wrapped my towel and went off to explore.




There is a section of private rooms. There was a waiting list of hours to get one. I wasn’t even considering one, but still walked through. Some would have open doors with naked guys laying there waiting for some other guy to come in and start, well, having sex. Sometimes they would close the door. Often times they would not. You would think that with all that sexual energy going on, with all that just plain sex going on, that you would get horny real fast. In fact I was kind of counting on that when I first dared to go, as I figure that would give junior a little boost in the being social department. Surprisingly, watching two guys have sex was not the biggest turn on I ever saw. That’s not to say it was dull or a turn off. Just that it seemed perfectly natural. And that is when I realized that what I read had changed how I felt about myself and about sex.

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The back part of the club is a maze. There are dark sections, lit sections, lots of half walls and lots of holes in those walls. There were a couple of slings hanging up in the corner. Ion one a guy was sitting there with his ass up in the air waiting for something to be put in it. One guy came over and gave it shot. For the most part he just sat there waiting as other guys milled about like they were smoking cigarettes. There are a lot of people, but there is not a lot of talk. What little there was seemed awkward. For being so crowded it felt quite lonely. I never did get up the courage to stick my dick through one of the holes for even just hang out in the open. I was too afraid of not being able to perform, or conversely getting off in 30 seconds. And yet I kept asking myself why everyone was so timid of doping anything. It is not like no one is not going to know what you are doing. And that was basically the point of everyone being there in the first place. So why does it have to be this secretive dance?




Sometimes something did start happening. Guys would eventually congregate around to watch what was going on. Sometimes something else would come of that, but often it was over and everyone started their little dance again around the maze. I suppose everyone was looking for that one person who turned them on. And as I made my way around the circuit, first down this way, then around this corner this time, something changed. Instead of being on the lookout for some hot naked otter, I suddenly started thinking about what that guy over there was thinking. What was he looking for? Did he come here to get off? Was he just as self conscious as I was my first time? Or was thins home to him? Did he want sex? Maybe he just wanted to watch. Or maybe even just remember when he was the hot guy all the others were looking for. As that happened, I started getting turned on by a different guy. An older guy. Well, I had ot keep reminding myself that yeah, I am now on the backside of my 40s, so they maybe aren’t any older than me. But someone who was real. Someone who was comfortable with the idea of just getting a blow job or shooting a load. Someone who wasn’t ashamed of themselves, and more importantly didn’t give a shit about who watched them doing it.




There is an area that has a raised platform. The walls have these big windows in them. The blowers stand on the lower level at the windows, The blowees stand on the platform. It is the right height and comfortable for all. Fortunately the area is better lit and it is much easier to see what is going on. And be seen. I was slowly building up my level of confidence. I was not ready to get a blowjob yet, I was worried I would just shoot my load before he even got his lips around my dick.


But I was ready to give. This wasn’t of course my first time giving or getting a blowjob. But it WAS my first time doing it out in the open, with a dozen other guys wandering around for everyone to see. Slowly I got closer to the windows, watching a couple of guys next to me get intimate. Well, no, it was pretty much just a bunch of moaning and face fucking. This guy of heavy but not too overweight build was standing there on the upper level watching as well. Slowly I end up getting closer. The decision time had come. I decided what the hell. I reached up, grabbed his dick, and started giving him a hand job.




So maybe that is another thing about a place like this. If you were to walk up to a guy at the super market and start playing with his man parts, you would likely get a good beating, if not arrested. In a place like this, if having someone play with your dick is not something you want, you simply politely say no thanks and move away. Would you like a creamer with your coffee? No, thanks. Would you like a pamphelet? No thanks. How about a blow job? No thanks. Of course that is the fashionista crowd, who seems to be there to try and show off their naked bodies to a bunch of other guys would couldn’t give two shits about them. With most of the guys there, you grab them by the balls, they let out a moan and start thrusting their dick at you too. How about free sample?

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And so I found myself giving this guy a blowjob right there, as half a dozen guys were standing next to me. Apparently I was doing a pretty good job with my hands, and the guy got hard real fast, and was obviously enjoying it. I discovered I could take a lot more of it than I thought I could. I discovered that, yup, I am pretty much a horny slut with few hang-ups. At first I was pretty aware of the people around me. And that only turned me on. Three guys next to us decided to take the idea and run with branching out in their own creative direction. Pretty soon I just focused on what was in front of, or maybe in, me. While the guy I was blowing was obviously enjoying themselves, a most surprising thing happened to me.




I started getting bored with it.




Now there is a mind blowing moment. How may times have a I paid a hundred bucks or more for a lapdance with the hope of a few minutes of oral play? How many jack-off sessions revolved around this very same situation I was now experiencing in real life. What is the proper social protocol to tell some guy you want to stop sucking them? So I slowly broke it off. The guy at first tried to keep it going, but he eventually turned his attention to someone else. I wandered off to find a place to relax.




The “wet” area of the club is where most people hang out. The centerpiece is this huge jaccuzi in the middle of the room. On one side are the showers, and next to those on either side is the dry and wet steam rooms. You are supposed to take a shower before you go into the jaccuzi. Most guys take showeres pretty much before, after, and even in the middle of going to the other places. I suppose for a first timer these would be intimidating. There are a couple of shower heads against the back wall, and then a glass wall that seperates more showers – half being in the “shower room” and the other half, with rainhead showers, next to the jaccuzi. There are towel racks on the side walls, but don’t get too attached ot your towel. Too many to keep track of whose is whose.




I just gave some guy head in the other room in front of a whole bunch of guys, so the idea of getting naked and standing in the shower didn’t seem to be any issue for me. Other than the fact that I just could not get the damn thing to work! I was there for a good minute or two struggling – how could I not figure out how to turn on a shower. Suddenly a hand reached out and pressed a button below the handle and the water came on. It was only then I notice the arm was attached to a nicely muscular and fairly well endowed guy in his late twenties. “You need to press this button here. First time here?” he asked. “Well, welcome. It’s a good place, nice and clean.” And he wandered off to the steam room.




Now fit guys, or even just slightly out of shape guys, aren’t really going to get this part. But when you are really out of the norm for body shape, situations like open showers are the source of endless nightmares. The thought of even being exposed like that is a huge hurdle to overcome. So when a good looking guy not only talks to you in the shower, but totally ignores the eyes straight ahead rule and completely fails to even register any shock it is a giddy feeling. And it was at that point that I finally understood what a bathhouse is really about. It has nothing to do with sex. Well, ok a little to do with sex. But mostly, it is about being completely open with who you are. Your body, your personality, your sexual interests and sexual identity. You don’t have to be scared of doing anything but stare straight ahead because someone will react badly. You can look. You can enjoy. Heck, you can even get a boner in plain sight and that is perfectly acceptable here.




Surprisingly though that never happened. Not o me, not pretty much to anyone else. I was expecting to be walking around with my towel poking out 5 inches in front of me, yet I hardly got excited. I expected to have to try and navigate around all these obstructions sticking out from the crowd. That is not to say I didn’t see any, but really they were rare. It turns out that for all your fantasies, nudity is pretty much mundane once you do it for more than a few minutes. So I spent my time moving between the Jacuzzi and the sauna. I would say a majority of the guys wore their towels in the sauna and steam room. Not an overwhelming majority, but a majority of them.




It was only towards the end of the night that I saw the usual porn scene actually kind of happen. I was in the sauna on one of the benches. There was a good mix of guys. A few were casually playing with themselves, but really that was about as interesting as a piece of lint on the floor, so no one noticed. On the upper level a pretty good-looking daddy type was sitting there without his towel. This younger twink sat down on the lower level, and after a few minutes began playing with the older guys foot.




It took a few minutes for more to happen. The older guy just didn’t seem terribly interested at first, so the young twink tried harder. It was like watching a soap opera – what was going to happen next? Well, eventually the younger guy won and slowly starting giving the older guy a blow job. The guy was a bit vocal about it, and then everyone else in the sauna started to watch. The one notable thing about this situation was that the younger twink was the only guy by this point with his towel still tightly wrapped around his waist. Pretty much everyone else started playing with themselves, either discretely, or more blatantly. This one younger guy decided to make a move to fell the young twink up, and he instantly tightened up his towel and pushed him away. The twink and his daddy kept going at it, but it sent a wave through the rest of the group. What kind of uptight prick was this with I perfect little body teasing everyone? We are real people here. We can enjoy ourselves thank you very much. So others started getting it on, too.




It was only at that point I noticed the young guy sitting next to me. In some ways it was like looking at myself. Well overweight , he looked nervous. But he was playing with himself, his penis like mine overwhelmed by the stomach around it. It wasn’t big, but was obviously getting hard. If you asked me a week ago if I would have ever been turned on by someone like this I would have said no. Probably would have said no even that morning. But for some reason I found this guy playing with himself was giving me this great feeling! I was somewhat turned on, but it was more this warm at ease feeling, like somehow I got to relive my past, and break out of that shy young fat kind I once was. I had changed. Sex was no longer some fantasy thing, I no longer was ashamed of being me. I was now comfortable with myself. Sex was no longer in control of my mind, making me feel ashamed. Yeah, I felt good about sex. But it didn’t dominate my interests any more. I could safely deal with it on an as needed basis.




I never did give that young guy a blowjob. I was really tempted. In fact kind of turned on by the thought. But the guy sitting on the level above him also found him interesting and started playing with him before I got there. The young guy blew his load nearly instantly. It wasn’t anything big, no launching projectiles. In fact it was just a little oozing coming out. You could tell the poor guy was shocked it happened. But I just looked up at him, and unconsciously smiled. I got a little smile back. Then the guy above him gave him a kiss on the cheek, and started massaging the guys back. I left the two (well, the 10 or so, but those 2 in particular) and went out to get into the hot tub. I glanced at the clock on the TV set. Oh SHIT! It was 6:45, and I needed to be at the Nob hill for 8 to see the show! I spent the whole afternoon there at the baths!

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I took Lyft back to San Francisco and my hotel. I didn’t have time to take the train, or even grab supper. Every other weekend the nob Hill theater has a pair of porn stars come in and give a couple of shows. This weekend it was Jessie Colter and Dylan Strokes. I find Jessie Colter intriguing. Not only is he a power bottom, he is also open about being gay and very personal. I knew they would be doing asex show, I was hoping that he might ven walk around a bit so that you could see his body up closer a bit. Heck, maybe even stand by the edge of the stage and watch.




Defining the Nob Hill is a bit difficult. There is no bar or food or drinks, so it doesn’t qualify as a strip bar or club. They explicitly say it is not a bathhouse (though they do supposedly have naked nights). Downstairs is your typical video booth arcade. Supposedly there is a lot of action down there, but I have never seen any myself. Lot of guys, but not a lot of action. Upstairs is more like a small narrow movie theater. There is a small stage up front. Along side is the access hall, and at the end behind the stage is another smaller little dance pole room, and a couple of booths (I think, I have never seen them used since they had shower shows years ago). It is not a steady stream of strippers, but a dancer every half hour. The routine, or how it is supposed to go anyways, is the twink dances for 15 minutes than spends 15 minutes wandering among the audience. Now the first mark against this place is that the dancers aren’t the best in the world. They are usually really young, bone thin, and somewhat awkward.




But what they lack in looks they make up for in energy. Like I said they are supposed to dance for 15 minutes. Few do. Most walk on stage, drop their shorts (unless they didn’t even bother with them), spend maybe 5 minutes at most trying out various sexy poses on the stage, and then bound into the audience. The Emcee is sure to announce that the dancers work for tips, and “the bigger the bill, the bigger the thrill”. Most guys I think tip a dollar, some do 5’s. You stuff in their sock, and I don’t think most of them have any idea what you tip them. Most wouldn’t care anyways.




What the dancers lack in looks, they more than make up for in eagerness. I said before the booths were rarely used. That is mostly because there is little reason to. The dancer walks up to you, you shove a bill in his sock, and then you play with him for like 30 seconds. Usually they will get into it with you, too. They then step to the guy sitting next to you and repeat. Oral is not a usual occurrence, but let’s just say that I have visually verified it does occasionally happen. Likewise, you do have to be a bit careful who you sit next to, as pants don’t always stay on the customers, either. Whether you need to be careful that you do not or do sit next to certain customers is up to you to decide. But I was here for the sex show. And right on time, the emcee introduces the guest stars, and they appear on stage.




I have to admit Jessie has a good-looking body. I was hoping that I would get a bit closer look that from the back of the theater where I was stuck. With music completely drowning out any vocalization from either guy, and the vocals are a big part of their show, they did a short sex scene. I have to say, it looked terribly contrived. Fortunately both got their dicks out pretty quickly, but they were posing more than doing anything erotic. This was getting off to a bad start. They did their routine for about 10 seconds, and then stood up.








What I didn’t realize is that even the pornstars walk around the audience. Dylan started at the front, while Jessie started from the back. I was third in his attention. Now these guys were pros. They completely make you feel welcome and at home. It is weird – here is this hot pornstar standing with an erection inches from your face, and you feel like you want to sit down and have a conversation with him! I was hoping to get a closer look at his manhood. I wasn’t expecting to have trouble focusing on it because it was too close.




I put the requisite $5 bill in his sock. I figured a headliner they should get something a little better, right? It was obvious I could touch his chest. I mean, he was pressing it up against me. Another thing I like about Jessie compared to most strippers I have seen – he had hair on his chest. Slowly, would I dare? I moved my hand down, and decided to risk it. I gently brushed the back of my hand against his cock. Would he react? Well, he didn’t really like this idea. But it was not a scolding moment. He took my hand, told me to turn it palm up, and began slapping it with his cock! He then started doing his moaning thing as I sat there, half in shock, giving a pornstar a hand job.




I’d like to think that I did a pretty good job at it. He certainly seemed like he enjoyed it and again made you feel like you were the expert. But I think in reality he pretty much did that with everyone. I have gone places and paid $100 for a lapdance where the guy only once pulled his shorts down for a brief glimpse. Here for $25 admission and a $5 tip I was manhandling a porn star.




Borth guys made their rounds. They spent another 10 minutes trying to get off on stage. It ended up with Jessie lying flat on his back with is head towards the audience while Dylan was lightly fisting him. Alas it never happened. This was obviously not planned - you could tell by their reactions. I was disappointed, yes, but in a strange way it was oddly comforting to know that even pornstars sometimes have trouble getting themselves off.




So that was it for the night. I sat through one more stripper, this young kid who I wasn’t sure got the idea yet that the customers were supposed to be tipping him, as he bounced around every 45 seconds grinding himself against the few guys remaining, some of which were sitting there pants around their knees. It was late; I wanted sleep more than anything else. As I walked to my hotel, I was surprised what my thoughts turned to. I was thinking about Jessie. But I was not thinking about his dick, or his body, or sex with hi. I really, really wanted to have a conversation with him. What was it like being a porn star? What kind of guys really turned him on? Or did they even? And, when he flew, did he get to fly first class, too?

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Thank you for sharing this. As a big guy myself (both height and weight), I had a similar experience at a sex party. I really went to watch but was surprised that not only was I not the biggest there, no one cared that I was naked and was actually fending off some hot guys. I was new to the city and didn't know anyone, and going to the party filled the need I had, to be around people and have a few human interactions (that weren't sex).


And I think I would be the same way with a porn star or escort. I would love to get to know them more than, well, get to KNOW them.


Thank you for sharing!

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I can't believe I read the WHOOOOOOLE Thing.


And, related to much of it. I live 15-20 minutes from Steamworks. Never been. Have no desire to go. But the self-consciousness, the description regarding body image, are very accurate. (I tried a bathhouse one time in the WeHo area... I think it had the name Melrose ..... I hated it. The floor was sticky and grimy. My towel was threadbare. I felt like I was in a petri dish. I yelled NO loudly when something unknown touched me in a blackout room, and bolted. It's when I recognized I'm not just conservative vanilla, I'm kind of a judgmental prude regarding sex.... and OK with it.)


In an odd way, the description of the bathhouse experience reminds me of experiences at the BiggerCity dances they used to hold at STUD in SF. It's pretty rewarding to see guys who are shy regarding their bodies, eventually get over it, remove their shirts, and shake their booties on the dance floor; places safe from judgment have wonderful effects on people!


The description of NobHill was very helpful. I have lengthy posts regarding the place in this forum - my experience is all at least a decade old. The dancers shown on their website, and now this post, convinced me that I'm in no hurry to return there.

I wonder what conclusions will be drawn by 22nd Century anthropologists and social scientists who study early 21st Century social media.

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Great read. Well done on overcoming nerves and having a memorable experience :)


Re: Bathhouses. Not all are created equal with the Steamworks chain likely being the best you can currently find in the States. The Chicago and Toronto locations in my experience are spotless, beautifully designed and a lot of fun. Always a great mix of guys.


Benjamin Nicholas

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