"I don't like girls in the daytime," he said shortly, and then, thinking
this a bit abrupt, he added: "But I like you." He cleared his throat. "I
like you first and second and third."
-- F. Scott Fitzgerald, "This Side of Paradise"
My horsie bag and stripper gear...
Today the "What the hell are you doing in a place like this?!" factor reached critical mass. Everyone thinks I'm 18 and just fell off the milk-truck, including the manager, who photo-copied my ID three times already. Then I start talking and the heads start to shake.
Finance Guy: "Were you an English Lit major?"
Me: "Uh, haha, no I'm just an avid reader, sometimes, when I'm not here taking my clothes off. You want a dance?"
But eventually it always comes down to:
"Seriously, you're too good to be true. Would you ever date a guy you met here?".
God bless all of us. It's so weird.
I know I set myself up for this, and that I have, by the deftest subconscious maneuvers, put myself in yet another fish-out-of-water scenario to garner attention. Nobody is special, though. I am not. We are all equally deserving of love and attention, and the day I can walk in the strip club and fit in will be the day my ego really is shed like the outmoded lizard skin it truly is.
A guy came in, for the second time ever, apparently, after meeting me on Monday and bought a few dances from me with my clothes on (this is how you know a guy REALLY likes you). He wants to date me. I don't think it's going to happen, because he met me naked in a STRIP CLUB and I have serious doubts about the odds of that sort of meeting panning out into an awesome relationship. He knew how lame it was, he mentioned it, yet he couldn't seem to help himself.
I talked about Camus and Vonnegut with some customers when it was slow (chatting with the tightwads who don't buy dances is something I do when only I'm bored of talking to the Ukranian cocktail waitresses) and got some tips from Lexi, the Bronx hustler who often makes me cringe even though she's got the hang of the money-making part of this business. Behaviorally, she's a totally different human animal than I. I observe her keenly. Her nose looks as though it's been broken at least once.
"Don't talk with them for more than one song, and if they don't buy a dance, bounce to the next guy," she told me.
Then she volunteered some personal information:
"I don't have no boyfriend or parents, so I have to take care of myself. I used to have a guy who supported me, but that ended, and now I just have to do everything. I don't got no one, so I just do it."
She doesn't have to be nice to me, or tell me anything. I appreciate it.
PS The other day I went on a date with a thoughtful lawyer who gave me some vegan cupcakes and a book of Marilyn Hacker poetry. It's so nice to have a man do all the simple things like pay for a cab home, email the same night to say he had a great time, etc., which I haven't put myself out there to experience in awhile. I forget the positive aspects of dating sometimes. Funny to be on yet another date at Wild Ginger with the latest in the series of conservative men interested in me and well-off enough to take me off the meat grinder circuit yet still balk at the prospect of being kept by someone who doesn't electrify me attraction-wise from the get-go. NEWSFLASH TO SELF: Apparently Mr. Right with a career in the arts doesn't marry strippers/ ex-dominatrixes!
PS2 It's so slow at this club. I'm not making very much money at all, though I'm doing as well as most of the other women. Being new doesn't help. Neither does the economy, but my living expenses are VERY low, so I'll be ok by next week, money-wise.