Because a strip club need not be a mystery
If you Wikipedia “strip club,” the popular-yet-not-hundred-percent-legit search site describes it as a venue “where strippers provide adult entertainment, predominantly in the form of a striptease or other erotic dances.” Let’s try to ignore the fact that this definition seems to be missing a word (or has one too many).
Anyway, who hasn’t seen a strip club as glorified (or dishonored) in movies and television shows, anyway? But if you haven’t and/or you’re a youngling, then please stop reading.
Ever since I learned that some of my guy friends had gone to strip clubs, I instantly became curious. What was it like? Did girls dance and strip like they did in movies? Was lingerie a standard or were costumes involved, too? What was the setup like?
I bugged my friends every other weekend to take me, but they never agreed. They reasoned they only went because their titos and older cousins brought them, and that girls weren’t allowed inside. Well, it quite obviously became apparent that they were just making excuses. I mean, what guy would want their girl friend sitting next to them while they ogled at half naked chicks, right?
Well, I of female body, mind and soul, went anyway.
It’s really awkward at first
What do you do? Where do you sit? Do you wait for a girl to come to you or do you come up to them? Do you buy them a drink? Is it acceptable to just sit down at a table and how creepy is it if you do? How close can you get to the girls without being… that person?
My choice of a solution was a mixture of alcohol and a deep breath. It worked. I took my seat and two girls came up to me.
The girls are nice AF
Right off the bat, I told them I’m not interested in a dance or anything; I was just curious in checking the place out—they were cool with it and sat down with me anyway. After they gave me what I assume are fake names, I ask them to point me to the direction of the comfort room and they immediately volunteer to bring me there.
Honesty system: I wasn’t sober anymore and they could tell, so the help was very much appreciated.
They get comfortable a little too quickly
When I opened the cubicle door, there were three girls instead of two (and no, it wasn’t the alcohol that made me think so). Upon seeing me, the third quickly pulled her top down. I told her she didn’t have to do that because I wasn’t interested and she told me it was too bad, because she liked girls.
#OnTheJob #AlwaysOn #BolaLangNgBola
I sat back down at the booth and there were more girls around. Apparently, the club was having a slow night and there weren’t a lot of people to give their attention to. The girls, after being constantly told I didn’t swing that way every time one of them showed me their boobs, invited me to dance with them. I obliged.
Why did I oblige?
Ten seconds on the dance floor and one of the girls tried removing my jacket. I told her no and she respected that. No one else tried. For a while it seemed like I was with new friends who dressed in strategically cut clothing.
You feel bad; it’s inevitable
As confident as they seemed with their bodies and as content as they seemed with their lives, there was a part of me that still wondered why anyone would choose this career. Why opt to remove clothing as people watched with hungry eyes and thirsty mouths? Why work at a strip club (or as they call it, a dance club) at a tender age of 21 (if that was even the truth)?
Some women probably enjoy it. Other women probably feel empowered. But the girls around me that night could only say they had no other choice; it was the only thing they could do that would make them money. And hey, when you live in the Philippines, there are always hungry bellies to help fill or educations to help pay for.
So I understood. I couldn’t question it further and I didn’t.
I can’t say it wasn’t a good time because it was. Strip clubs are fun; otherwise they wouldn’t survive. It makes you feel like you can do whatever you want to do, because (unless you’re there with someone you know), nothing ever comes out of those four walls.
A little piece of advice
Keep track of the time; it’s like a time warp in there. You go in at 12 midnight and the next thing you know, it’s five in the morning.
Another thing: Leave your judgement at the damn door.
Art Alexandra Lara.