Stripped down

The other day, while driving through Los Angeles, I passed one of the city’s 8 gazillion strip clubs. It was late at night, I was bored and lonely and—for the splittiest of split seconds—I thought to myself, “Hm, strip club.”

Then I returned to my hotel.

In my life, I’ve gone to a strip club three times. The first time came when I was an intern at The Tennessean in Nashville. I was 21, and a bunch of us were going. I felt awkward about it, then entered and felt even more awkward. I remember drinking (glub) two grape juices, which probably cost $8 a pop. I didn’t shove any $1 bills in g-strings or get a lap dance.

The second time was in Florida. I was driving from somewhere to somewhere, covering Spring Training, and I spotted the glowing sign of a place called, I believe, The Tool Shed. I immediately recognized the sign as one of the places that appeared in the Motley Crue video for “Girls, Girls, Girls.” I was 26 or 27, single, entered by myself. Looked around—probably five guys in the whole joint, the stench of cigarette everywhere, one sad-looking chick on a stage, dancing to a Motown tune.

I left.

The final visit came about a decade back. My friend Dan was getting married, and one of his cousins or friends was insistent the bachelor party take place (post-dinner) at a strip club. Dan clearly didn’t want to go, and neither did most of the rest of us. But this guy was somewhat older, somewhat louder and, best I recall, capable of killing us all. So we went … and it was mortifying. This tool was tossing dollars left and right, making inane comments about one stripper after another. Could I have hid under a stiletto, I would have. Alas, I just sat there.

Those are my strip club stories.

Thing is, I’ve got no real beef with strip clubs. I mean, I’m not a particularly big fan of exploiting women. But I understand sexual expression, and sexual relief, and sexual finances (ie: strippers can surely make shitloads of money). It’s just, well, I can’t really picture myself sitting there all alone, breasts wobbling in my face, my wife and kids home without me.

PS: One thing: Just realized—I actually went a fourth time. Was reporting the Cowboys book, and many players used to hit up the Men’s Club of Dallas. So I spent an hour there. Expensive drinks, gorgeous women, a relatively empty notepad.

2 thoughts on “Stripped down”

  1. I realize this is a minority opinion, but I sort of fail to see the distinction between strip clubs and prostitution. I don’t particularly judge those who partake – do your thing, folks – but I don’t feel comfortable participating myself.

  2. I was standing in a strip joint in western Wisconsin after taking a bus there for a stag party. Just standing, drinking a beer and looking around when I look over and spot a gal with her ass in some guys face. Just then she looks at me and it happens to be the only young, attractive lady at my workplace. Mortified, she runs over and says she knew eventually somebody she knew would see her there and begged me not to tell anybody at work about it. Being a gentleman I assured her her secret was safe with me and threw a five on the table in front of me and asked about a dance (just kidding, I was nervous and trying not to stare for some reason). Anyway, monday rolls around, I worked at 11am at the time and the lady in the cube next to hers runs up to me and says “if you give me five bucks I’ll give you a lap dance”. We had an uncomfortable laugh and moved on. The next weekend every guy in the warehouse was at that strip joint. She told everybody! I’m not sure if the lady blamed me or not, every time I drive by that place on the way to golf or whatever I think of that.

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