Hello again…I know, I’m late.  But in my defense, I was late to stage too.  Waiting backstage for a song to end when you know you’re up next is probably similar to waiting, blindfolded, for the word “Fire!” at your execution.  I was that scared.  And then it did end.  And God said my name again.  I wasn’t quite sure where to go.  It was very dark and in their effort to make each dancers’ entrance more dramatic they put a black curtain up to separate the landing from the lights backstage.  I had to step up, and up again.  I didn’t step quite high enough.  No, I didn’t spill out onto the stage in a tangle of arms and legs.  (At this point, I wish I had because that would make this an even more dramatic read!)  But I did make a little bit of a ruckus stumbling my way up to the curtain in the dark.  And then…

There I was on the first landing.  Looking out at a long stage, two poles, loud customers and a naked sweaty girl directly ahead of me.  I didn’t realize I’d be sharing the stage and she was already in her little box.  (Please see 6ft rule in previous entry)  That meant I had to go out to the front.  I had planned on staying near the rear of the stage for most of the set, but that obviously was not going to be happening.  Alright, move.  I stepped down onto the actual stage.  I had to force my feet to walk out into the limelight.  For those of you who know me, that’s not usually such a hard feat.  I like attention.  Nope, love it.  But this was something else altogether.  I step forward…into thin air.  I land hard on one foot.  Another step down?  That just seemed like a waste.  Great.  Thank goodness for my professional training because it could have been much worse.  I instinctively reach up and touch the ultra-low ceiling, which I noticed other girls had been doing.  Actually, what I had noticed was a girl dangling from it and I thought how in the world did she do that?  Ohhh, graduated ceiling.  I get it now.  I walked forward trying to look like I knew what I was doing.  My naked dance partner smiled at me.  That was nice of her.  I made a mental note to thank her later.

I head toward the first pole in the front that is most visible to the room.  Guys are watching me, patiently waiting to see what I was going to do.  If I could’ve shared with them that this was probably a good time to take a bathroom break because I wasn’t going to do much, I would’ve.  But, as I feared, they were paying close attention.  Almost salivating like I was a piece of meat.  Then I remembered where I was, so yeah, that was about right.  With one hand on the ceiling, I reach for the pole.  I almost laughed because I thought, this won’t be so bad.  It’s just like a ballet barre, but vertical.  Just no plies.  Piece of cake.  Instantly, I realized that I still had that damn hanky in my hand.  Where does it go?  I decide to just set it down on the corner of the stage.  I’d get it later.  So I start to dance.  I pretended that I was at home goofing around and dancing for myself.  Everything was going fine.  I wasn’t hyperventilating, the floor was a little slippery but I had a good grip on the pole and I wasn’t planning on letting it go.  Until…

My next lesson: You can’t ignore money.  Guys were holding it up and waving it at me which meant I had to go over and get it.  Otherwise, it’d be rude, right?  Right.  So I bravely danced over and started taking my first tips.  Once a girl receives her first tip in her garter, she’s cursed.  It’s like a dam breaks and she realizes the sexual power she now possesses over men and their wallets.  I started to feel bold.  And, yes, this happens quite instantly.  Men are smiling, giving encouragement and I’m eating it up.  It’s awesome.  Soon there’s a fair amount of moolah in my garter.  I’m feeling fabulous.  Nowadays, I know it’s because they could tell I was brand spanking new.   I was shiny, like a new car and with a new car smell.  Actually, it was freesia.  But everything about me was new to them and they were very interested to see what was under my hood.  Yep, in all my dancing glory I forgot that all-important reason for even being on the stage.  Get naked.  And I needed to hurry with it because it was already the second song.

In planning my outfit I had only concentrated on getting it onto my body.  As an exotic dancer, one has to plan on how to take it off.  Only once in all my years has someone paid me to put my clothes on and before you start laughing at me, it wasn’t what you think.  He paid for two dances and he said strip down on the first and then slowly re-dress for the second.  Interesting, right?  I thought so too.  Anyway,  let’s start with my dress.  It was tight, I mean second skin.  It also had lacing up both sides.  I also had a matching tie bikini underneath.  I know it was a lot.  But I figured it’s supposed to be more of a stripTEASE, right?  The anticipation is what’s sexy, not just the nudity.  Right?  Wrong.  Fuck Demi Moore and her elongated stage routines.  These guys wanted skin.  I had to keep loosening the laces in order to slide the dress down.  This took a good, hm, minute.  In stage time, that’s a lot.  I know there were dancers laughing at me.  I saw one of my friends in the crowd.  She smiled and gave me  a thumbs up.  I just kept thinking why did I wear all of this?  I gave up on the dress halfway.  I had to give them something.  So I undid my bikini top and took it off.  Yay.  At least something was exposed.  At that point, the third song was starting and I was shifting to the back of the stage and another dancer joined me, taking over the front.  Thank goodness, a reprieve.  At least I wasn’t the complete focus anymore so I could whittle away at getting this dress off.  Which I did with my back to the crowd.  I had to really concentrate.

And so I danced.  Once I got naked I stayed in my box like I was supposed to and yes, money was thrown at me.  Which was probably the worst part of that whole ordeal.  And when my set was finally over, I was pretty proud of myself.  I gathered all my clothes, all 50,000 pieces and I remembered my hanky.  Going back to the dressing room, mindful of all the steps up and down, I was thrilled with myself.  I just danced naked for strangers and at that moment I had more money than I had walked in with.  This was so awesome.  I didn’t quite know about tipout yet, but I’ll let my past self enjoy this moment for at least two more entries…In the dressing room I had a decision to make.  Was I going to continue wearing all of this get-up or should I simplify?  I sat down to think about it.  Ew.  I soon realized that my bare hoo-hoo and booty were in direct contact with a chair that was not my own and I had no earthly idea who else had been sitting there or what may or may not have been crawling on them.  It was like a warmth settled over me as I realized what the handkerchief was for.  I unfolded it, placed it on the seat and sat.  Now, this may seem mundane to outsiders, but to me it was a sign that I was really one of them and these little nuances would only be understood by a rare few.  I had a renewed confidence about myself.  I had my first stage set unscathed (for now), I figured out the importance of my hanky which will be revisited frequently by the way and I had profited already.  I freshened up, got dressed, tied my $ to my garter, grabbed my hanky and hit the floor.  And blue lights came on…

My first thought: is this a raid?  No, not quite.  It’s their version of a blue light special.  Wonderful, we’re on sale.  I decided to enjoy my newfound glory and sit this one out.  I still had to do the stage prance, though.  All the girls line up, walk the stage and exit onto the floor to ask for dances.  I walked and tried to look confident but I really just wanted to find a seat.  And use my hanky.  It’s not just for naked hoo-hoo’s.  Thongs don’t cover much, either.  I hit the floor and found a seat.  A young gentleman motions for me to come talk to him.  Oh, maybe he just wanted to give me a tip.  Or a compliment.  Nope.  He wanted to know if I was available for a special.  I took a moment because I had to remember what the prices were and oh my goodness am I ready for this?  I said what every exotic entertainer is trained to say.  Sure, I’m available.  He smiles and we line up to go into the back room.  For my first lapdance.  Ever.

Up Next: Am I Supposed to be Doing it Like This?

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