Every time I passed the sleazy strip club with the neon “Girls Girls Girls” sign, I wanted to go in. I don’t really know why. I’m heterosexual (other than my small thing for Megan Fox). And I know it’s not politically correct to go to the strip club (I was raised with that “Free to be You and Me” album just like you were). And yet? Something was compelling me.
I guess I just wanted to see me some titties, OK?
This place wasn’t one of those huge ironically named gentleman’s clubs you always see off the freeway. This one was local, right near the arts district of a fairly cool Southern town. Frankly, I've never be tempted by those chain strip clubs. They strike me as formulaic and uninteresting. It was like I was choosing a neighborhood restaurant over Applebee’s. I’m like a strip club hipster who likes her lap dances artisanal.
Image: George M Groutas
Convincing my boyfriend to go was not that tough, as you can imagine. We chose the night after his 49th birthday, and I perused my wardrobe carefully. What does a late-40s woman wear to see women wearing nothing at all? I finally chose a black blousy top that showed a lot of cleavage, because who wouldn’t want to see my old lady décolletage when dozens of 21-year-old fully exposed bosoms are in the room?
The first time we attempted to go in, the place was completely empty. It was 10 o’clock. “I think strip clubs start kind of late,” my boyfriend, the strip club-ologist, told me. So in my silver high heels, I minced off with him to the nearest bar, because who doesn't want to see a 48-year-old in her silver heels when there are dozens of 21-year-olds wearing Lucite heels and nothing else?
We tried again closer to midnight, and finally people were there. As we headed in, a stranger on the sidewalk said, “You don’t wanna go in there. That’s not what you two are looking for.”
I turned to see a middle-aged man in a baseball cap and polo shirt, the kind of guy who probably has a beach house and an affinity for aged scotch. I actually have no idea if “aged scotch” is really a thing, but you know what I’m saying. This man and I, on the surface, had little in common.
“How come I don’t wanna go in there?” I asked, my aged bosoms heaving from the mincing in my heels.
“It’s pretty sleazy, ma’am,” he said. “If you two are looking for … that sort of thing, you should try the gentleman’s clubs on Highway 42.”
“Sleazy is exactly what I’m looking for,” I told the poor guy, who was just trying to help us out. He was like a talking marital aid. He looked me up and down at that point, and I felt thrillingly daring. I felt like when that one woman from the Go-Gos came out as a dominatrix. Doris Day (if Doris Day wore silver heels) clean-cut package on the outside, bad to the bone on the inside. (Full disclosure: The only thing I’m really bad about is returning library books, and sometimes I leave my yogurt on my desk for two hours and eat it anyway.)
After that Wizard of Oz-ish, I’d-turn-back-if-I-were-you warning, we were more determined than ever. So we paid our $12 apiece, and walked inside.
Man, was that place sleazy! That polo-shirted stranger was right. It turns out women don’t even wear Lucite heels anymore (I am not up on my stripper garb). They wear sparkly ankle boots that are also sandals, which seems like a contradiction in terms, but who am I to judge.
There was also a lot less pole activity than I thought there’d be, and a lot more lying down and wiggling one’s legs in the air. It was an all-nude club, so we saw everyone’s kit and caboodle. There was also very aggressive lap dancing going on.
“Did you ever see women at male strip clubs?” asked my boyfriend. “They’re always yelling and woo-hooing and having a great time. Look at all the men in here.”
I looked around. They were either staring intently at kit and caboodles, or sitting straight-faced getting lap dances. There wasn’t even anything close to a "woo-hoo." It looked less like fun and more like something they had to get done, like picking up a shower curtain rod on the way home or having your oil changed.
Women and men and our sexuality — we be different.
The evening ended when we decided we were rude to not tip the ladies, so I watched as my boyfriend approached the stage and gave some singles to a particularly lovely young woman. In appreciation, she took off her thong and showed him the caboodle. I can honestly say that’s the only time I’ve watched anyone show her business to my man, and I kind of hope it’s the last. Then I saw him say, “Thank you. You have a good night, now” to her as he left.
“You have a good night, now.” How cute was that? I held his hand as we left the place, which he had turned into a gentleman’s club, after all.
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