To Choke a Hamster

An unexpected side effect of being an exotic dancer is that it is ruining places of business for me all over town. For instance, there’s this one little restaurant in the heart of downtown Round Rock that I can no longer patronize because the owner severely violated my boundaries during a lap dance a few months ago.

Now there’s about 15 bars in downtown Austin I can no longer frequent.*

I’m tempted to name drop. Who wants to know the names of local businessmen who treat strippers poorly? Raise your hands!

It was 8 pm at Palazio on Saturday night, and I’d only made forty bucks dancing onstage. The female manager, whom I suspect took an instant disliking to me for some reason, pulled me offstage mid-song demanding to know why I wasn’t wearing regulation t-backs.

Because I don’t have any that went with my outfit? Obvs. Did this club cop not respect color coordination?

She did not. Ugh. I had just emerged from the dressing wearing *two* frickin’ pairs of underwear when *he* beckoned me over.

“It’s about time,” he said when I arrived. “I’ve been waiting for you all evening.”

I smelled money. My night was perking up.

He had blue eyes made all the more striking by his blue fleece hoodie. He waved me onto his lap but refused to uncross his legs. That should have been a red flag, but it wasn’t. In my 20 months of dancing, no man has ever refused to uncross his legs for me.

“You are the hottest thing in this club right now,” he said.

“Just wait a few hours,” I told him. “It’ll pick up.”

Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha. This dude would spend the next hour complaining about my lack of authenticity. For a sharp-eyed businessman, he certainly wasn’t paying attention.

They never do, though. I am just a museum collection of very nice tits and ass, an odd but beautiful specimen lacking brains and heart and a voice.

Also, who the fuck comes to a strip club seeking authenticity? You may as well go to a Catholic church seeking a moral compass, or this blog, seeking wholesome content.

He slid a practiced finger into my bra and pushed it aside. “You have perfect tits. I like perfect. And you’re tiny, too. It’s so hot.”

I tried to hide my annoyance. You want to see my tits close up? Either find me flashing tripping hippies at a rave after midnight or buy a lap dance, asshole! I’m not your free admission to the museum.

“I own 15 bars in Austin,” he said, giving me his name. I recognized his last name immediately. “And now I want to own you. How much would that take? Forty thousand a year?”

“Um . . . *only* you?” I’m not averse to wearing a very expensive collar, but I need it to be really loose.

“Well, yes, but you can lie to me. Or look, how about a free apartment, and you blow me once a day?”

“A free apartment where?”

“Look, what’s it gonna take to get you to go to breakfast with me? Money is no object. I don’t give a fuck about money.”

He mumbled something to his friend next to him about charging five times more for sandwiches in areas hit by the coronavirus, which he seemed very pleased about.

His friend wore a “Crows Before Hoes” GOT-shirt, which made me like him a lot better. He shot me a sympathetic look.

“Three grand,” I informed Mr. Moneybags. I had been thinking two, but my price increases inversely to my calculation of what a stellar human being you are.

“Alright,” he said, “But I get to fuck you five times.”

Too bad for this guy I only fuck broke musicians. Usually only *after* buying them dinner and driving them home, though. I mean, I try to be a lady about it.

“I don’t fuck men for money,” I protested. “That includes an evening in VIP, and then I’ll go to breakfast with you.”

“Fine. Three times, then.”

“We’re done here.”I pushed myself up to leave, but he put his hand over mine on the side of the chair and tightened it.

“Look,” he said, his eyes glinting. “I really do have a lot of money, and if you walk away, I promise you’re, at some point, gonna think ‘Tsk, maybe I shouldn’t have done that.'”

I must’ve looked really pissed at this point because he softened his tone. “Look, I really do just want to get to know you better, that’s all.”

“Then come spend an hour with me in VIP,” I said. “Yes?”

“Alright,” he said reluctantly, allowing me up. I took his hand and led him to VIP, a cute waitress dutifully following us.

I led him to the most expensive cabana in the back while the waitress explained how the transaction would work.

Somehow in VIP, the confident, cocky businessman turned into a scared child. “Wait, this booth is $600 for two hours?” he asked incredulously.

“Plus a thousand an hour for me!” I rolled my eyes on the inside. I thought he said he didn’t give a fuck about money.

He looked at me, wide-eyed. “Six hundred dollars is a lot of money! I’d rather just spend that on you outside the club.”

If I could have rolled my eyes harder, they’d be knocking down strippers like pins at a bowling alley. I cannot even begin to count how many times I’ve heard that particular phrase. Whenever you hear it, that’s a good sign that it’s time to pivot on your heels and stalk away, your clenched backside communicating your contempt.

“Look,” I said as kindly as possible, making one last attempt to salvage the past hour in which I’d received exactly zero dollars. “If you want to spend time with me outside the club, the best way to do that is to take really good care of me inside the club.”

This is 100% true, but they never get it.

The waitress shifted her feet, and I decided he had wasted enough of our time. I stood up. “I’ve gotta get back to work.”

“There are women in here who will fuck me for free!”

“Go talk to them, then!” I retorted, striding away, my backside clenched tight enough to choke a hamster.

The only thing good he had done for me was convince one of the managers to let me stay for the full night shift. While I danced for frat boys and blue collars, all of whom showed me greater decency and kindness than Mr. Moneybags, I caught glimpses of him across the club. Dancer after dancer cycled through his lap, but he didn’t buy dances from any of them.

I checked on him once when I found him curled up in a chair in VIP, bowed in almost a fetal position. He looked up when I approached.

“I really did just want to get to know you better,” he said, looking at me with eyes that were both petulant and pleading.

“You can for three grand!” I exclaimed brightly.

He groaned and slumped back over.

I’m not sure Mr. Moneybags had done me a huge favor, allowing me to stay for the entire shift. It had not been a lucrative evening. When I tipped out the deejay, he picked up the stack of ones and peered at it suspiciously. “Are there twenty bones in here for your skip?” he asked.

“What?” I asked. Then I realized what the deejay meant: While I was in VIP trying to wrangle three grand from Mr. Moneybags, the deejay had skipped my turn in the dance rotation, which costs twenty dollars.

Which meant that my hour with Mr. Moneybags had actually *cost* me money. MOTHERFUCKER. I hope they cure coronavirus real soon just to spite him.

I mean, for the obvious reasons too, but I am hella petty.

In the meantime, if you don’t see me out at my usual haunts around town, it’s because I realized I know the owner. UGH.

—————————-

*On the other hand, Bar 1919 in San Antonio is owned by a fantastic human being, and you should definitely go drink his delicious cocktails and smoke his humongous cigars.

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