Okay, so, yeah, I started this draft during the holiday season and then got pretty wrapped up in other things, like having to purge my dismay at my experience with Deluded, but I do apologize. With that said, I still really love the title – so it stays…
Call me crazy, but Vegas wasn’t shaping up to be what every little stripper dreams of. Not in the slightest. With all of the high hopes placed on this magical land of neon lights, desert air and extreme cash flow, Vegas is a stripper’s Christmas. The ramped up anticipation of packing the perfect outfits, the perfect stilettos, making sure you packed your makeup, hair, stockings, garters, teeth whitener…but this trip was turning out to be about as merry as a stripper stocking full of nickels. And it hurt just as much. There were many flaws in our plan, but something had to give. I mean, this was Vegas!
So we tucked ourselves in after a miserably uneventful night: sad, rejected, broke. We truly wanted to wake unto a beautiful morning filled with hope and a more positive outlook on an electric Vegas morning. And it almost worked until my tripmate’s phone rang bright and early – her fabulously bitchy boyfriend informing her that he was out of money and when was she going to send him some? Ugh. So we set out in search of the nearest Western Union so he could shut the hell up. While we trudged along, I got to thinking…who was this guy? And why did he have such power over her – and apparently over us because we were right along beside her, trouncing up and down ‘The Strip’. Aptly named, not for us, but for its seemingly endless stretch of pavement filled with casinos, clubs, chapels and more casinos – and minus anything remotely green. I’m talking about trees. Bushes. Plants. Anything to provide oxygen in such a dry heat. Ugh, that place was like a desert! Heehee…but seriously, it was exhausting. We were supposed to be resting for crying out loud.
Four hours later…
I’m in the shower, washing the grit, sun and sweat out of my eyes (among other things), mentally preparing for the evening ahead. Through the trickle of water I hear my friend arguing with her boyfriend on the phone. This was crazy. Why did she put up with that? She always came across so tough and here she was dealing with this when she should be focusing on this trip. What an inconsiderate ass this guy was! He must be really domineering with a strong physical presence, like Dolph Lundgren or maybe a quiet, angry calm like the Godfather. Or maybe he’s one of those angry black men who just fuck like maniacs and control their women with their penis – we all know white strippers love black men…yeah, he must be something along those lines. And so we didn’t say much in response to her defensiveness after every phone call – he’s taking care of the kids, he’s tired, he’s frustrated because of his job situation (lack of) – why is it that strippers seem to be the main women who not only find the brokest, dumbest, unemployed men on the Earth, but then procreate? Men who have the nerve to have an attitude when it comes to taking care of their children, their home, their bills? What the hell?
And then she dropped a bombshell: she was going to buy a ticket for him to come out to Vegas. Pardon? You’ve got to be kidding me. She wasn’t. What could we say? Arguing didn’t work because her fear of him was greater than her fear of us. I was worried about how this guy was going to behave once he arrived. Was he going to berate us as well? Act like our pimp and demand money? I was worried. Oh yeah, and where the hell was he going to sleep? With us, was her answer. Sigh.
We arrived at the Cheetah that night, already defeated. This was not the Vegas trip I had imagined. There was still some hope though: the night manager. He had to want to hire us. And to our delight: he did! But he couldn’t. (insert awwwww here) Why not? Again with the “you were hired by the other manager and it’s up to him if he wants to let you work my shift (crap). I’d love to have you, but my hands are tied.” His hands are tied. Like he’d ever be that lucky. We got ready for our shift, all the while watching the actual night shift girls get ready to leave: counting their money, giggling, cackling…I felt like an outcast stepsister watching her older sister make out with the cutest boy in school. A throwaway, tossed aside left begging for scraps. And we were hotter than them! Especially me, dammit. Breathe. Focus. I went on the floor to sift through the debris, hoping that a few gentlemen were still eager for some dances. Eh, it was a little bit better than the night before, but not by much. There wasn’t anyone giving hand jobs this time around, so that was a bonus. Hmmmm, let’s see. Let’s talk to this guy.
This guy took me to the Room With No Name, where the dances cost a bit more. Cool. I kept dancing and he kept buying. Perfect. And he was really nice. But just as I was getting into my groove and he was relaxed, the money killer barks: keep your hands to yourself. I turn around to see the bouncer (muscle-bound, thick neck, steroid-freak) looming over me. He finishes up with, ‘you know better’ to me. What his mind couldn’t comprehend was that those were my hands on my breasts, not his. I could offer the extremely low lighting as an excuse on behalf of the bouncer, but given that I have a caramel complexion and the customer was very white, it’s hard to believe he couldn’t distinguish between the two. So I said, ‘these are my hands.’ He said, ‘no they’re not.’ And walked away. And thank you very much, total mood killer! That was my last dance. As we left the room, I approached the bouncer, only to admonish that he had been mistaken. I was personally offended that he thought I was that kind of girl. Again, he disagreed, stating that he knew what he saw and that was that. I was highly irritated. He may have been a bit of a bigot, but that’d be just a guess.
So on to the next guy. We’ll call him Reggie. Reggie was a tall, outspoken, big tough black guy from somewhere other than Vegas. Can’t remember. What I do remember is that he was extremely jovial, generous (always a plus), and incredibly forthcoming with Vegas knowledge. Like -
- drink plenty of water
- it’s a great place to make money
- this shift is horrible; how’d you get stuck with it?
But the best, absolute best thing he could have ever said: this is the club you should be at – ___________. Oddly enough, some other customers had mentioned that club as well. We were a bit intimidated, though. It sounded like a place where you had to have fake boobies, a deep tan and drive a $50,000 car BEFORE you get hired. A professional exotic entertainment place. I had to face facts: my tripmates were both incredibly skinny, not slim, skinny. They were members of the itty bitty titty committee - who am I kidding, they were the President and Vice President. Love ‘em to death, but they had nipples and that was it. And they were both ghostly pale; the Vegas sun glinted just as much off of them as it did off of the chrome wheels. They were pale! Our biggest fear was that we wouldn’t all get hired. Looking around the Cheetah, dead as hell with no glimmer of hope, we decided to take our chances elsewhere. We didn’t want our new ‘pimp’, who was arriving the next day, to show up and us not have anything to show for our 3 days in Vegas.