The time I made a stripper feel bad about herself


First off, I would like to say that if anyone in my family is reading, you may want to skip this post. I don’t do anything bad in it, but there’s nudity involved, and I feel squeamish even if we watch a movie together and it has nudity in it. I almost shriveled up and died when I had to sit through the sex scenes in A History of Violence with Mom. The violence was fine, though; you know how she likes blood and guts. The ending was a let-down, though, don’t you think? All the reviews promised a big twist, but everything was just what I expected it to be from the very start. You shouldn’t go in expecting a twist, though. It’s what’s ruined the oeuvre of M. Night Shylaman. You should probably just steer clear of reading reviews, I guess. And you should steer clear of reading this post, as I said.

Now then, let me continue. I’ve been to exactly five strip clubs in my life. The first was on a Golden Words road trip to Montréal, when five of us went to a place called Club Super Sexe. The next two clubs were attended in the same night as part of a friend’s bachelor party. The fourth was when a friend of mine got promoted at our old job, and his boss took him and me to the airport strip club on our lunch hour to celebrate. The airport strip club at noon is a depressing place to be, but I’ve never liked strip clubs at all. I don’t see the point. It’s like a restaurant where they bring the food out, parade it around, wave it under your nose and let you smell it, and then take it back to the kitchen without letting you eat it. Certainly, if you tip the maitre d’ enough, it’s possible to go back to the kitchen and sample the food, but you’ll only find that it’s already been pre-chewed by someone else. Needless to say, it’s also likely that the restaurant wouldn’t pass a health inspection. On principle, I prefer free home cooking anyway.

So, while I’m not crazy about strip clubs, I have a friend who is (the same friend whose bachelor party took us to two such establishments). This friend was visiting me a couple of years ago, and we found ourselves passing Zanzibar on Yonge St. that evening. He simply had to have a lap dance, he decided. I’m a good host, so I indulged him and we went in. He disappeared into the back room, and I sat at a table and had an expensive drink and waited. I waited for a long time. Eventually, a woman happened by and asked if I’d like a dance. “How much would it cost?” I inquired. It would cost twenty bucks. I had an extra twenty bucks that had no real business being in my pocket. What the hell, I figured. “Okay,” I said.

So, she led me to this back room, and the song began, and with it, three excruciating minutes. Tina Turner may have made “Private Dancer” sound smoky and erotic, but the lyrics reveal the female experience to be drudgery rather than romance. The male experience — or, at least, my experience — is mostly just awkwardness, wondering what to do with your hands that won’t get you pitched bodily out of the club by a bouncer while the stripper gyrates her naked body about two inches from yours, and maintaining a twitching, nervous grin and pretending to have fun. She was cute enough, though maybe not as toned as you’d expect a stripper to be. I was relieved when it ended.

“Would you like another dance?” she asked.

“No, thank you,” I said.


“I’m good, thanks.”

I was eager to get back out to the main room and see if my friend was back. As I would find out shortly, he wasn’t. I guess it’s unusual to stop at just one dance.

“Most people get more than one dance,” she said.

“Well, I should get going. That was great, though.”

She seemed to take this as a personal rejection. The conversation grew steadily more awkward. “You know, I’m more than just this,” she said at one point. “I’m also good to talk to. I have really good conversations.”

“I’m sure you do,” I said. “You seem really smart.” I was starting to wonder if she wanted to take our relationship to the next level. After I excused myself, met my friend, and left, I wondered if maybe she’d been hinting that I should give her my number and we could have a good conversation on the phone or something. But on second thought, maybe she just had deep-seated issues about her choice of vocation, and I was right to be glad about being the hell out of there.

9 Responses to “The time I made a stripper feel bad about herself”

  1. 1 Scott

    Your restaurant analogy supposes that the only way to appreciate a woman is to have sex with her.

  2. Maybe this is why most of the local waitresses now have me ejected from their establishments on sight.

  3. 3 Riley

    You should change that analogy to:

    Strip clubs are like those really
    expensive restaurants. You know, the
    ones where 97% of the bill is for the
    atmosphere, partly because it’s
    apparently such a great thing to be
    seen eating there, but mostly because
    the portions are almost non-existant.

    That way, if you ever find yourself in such a restaurant, you won’t be able to stop giggling.

  4. 4 Gloria

    Didn’t you realize, Peter Lynn? Zanzibar is where the girls never stop.

  5. It could’ve been worse, I suppose. What I hate are the strippers who get mad when you say you don’t want a dance. They give you this huffy tone, like “Well then why the hell are you here?” I actually told one who was harrassing me a little that I wanted a lapdance, just not from her. Which I would’ve felt bad about, except she was being so bitchy. Thanks for making me feel welcome, then…

  6. 6 MB

    how are you my old friend??
    : )

  7. Depends which MW is asking. Is it Matt Wilson? Mike Wallace? Mary Worth?

  8. 8 Scott

    I think it’s Milton Bradley or perhaps Monty Burns. With better luck, though, it could be Million Bucks.

  9. Yeah, they don’t like it when you stop at just one dance. Like the next dance is going to be different or better.

    And they really hate it when you throw change on stage. It’s almost as if they’re too good to accept Sacagawea dollars. Pfft.

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