Vagina Face

  

There’s this thing that men, women and everyone do where they like to make unsolicited comments on your personal appearance. I was prey to this at an early age. While my sister had nicknames like Pretzel and Sticks, my relatives thought to cleverly offset these with my nicknames of Pork Chop and Garfield. Then somehow they are genuinely surprised that I had a weird relationship with food and had a brief love, hate, vomit affair with an eating disorder in my mid 20s.

In much the same way, it’s common for men in the club to pass judgement on our appearance. “It’s just so nice to see a woman with real curves these days.” Note to such men, no matter how you phrase it, few Australian women like to be told they have put on weight, are curvy, or voluptuous. Down here on lonely island we run behind the booty loving times of the USA and UK. It’s hard to keep up with the rest of the world when you’re clutching onto a snack pack of celery sticks, sprinting on minimal calories with bow legs cause you’re trying to maintain your box gap at a pace.

Back in the day when I would allow the men to speak their minds, I’d have bets placed on what the status of my pubic hair would be. Bald like a prepubescent girl? Landing strip? Untrimmed? Some creative topiary perhaps? The latter would always be the witticism of the group imbecile with a laugh like the stupid hyena from The Lion King. Not knowing the term “topiary” it would usually be expressed more along the lines of, “Yeah! I bet fifty bucks she has her bush cut into the shape of a fucking rooster or something. Cock on ‘er box! LOL. Like on Edward Scissorhands. ROFL. Edward VAGINAhands. LOL. Why was that faggot crying if he got to trim bushes all the time?? (more LOLing and ROFLing)”  Yes, yes. We get it dickhead. Excellent use of a double entendre “bushes”. Clever. This is what we, as dancers deal with on a regular basis. Some girls are so professional that they can even make themselves giggle with conviction. I cannot.

To turn the tables, I’d like to address the not so recent trend of the fluffy beard. The beard so big, long, puffy and lustrous that it has the consistency of freshly spun fairy floss at a state fair. Untrimmed. Requiring the launch of beard oil products into the Anglo world. Caressing the space around it as it drifts in the breeze, seemingly with a body and mind of its own. Enjoying the tickling sensation of sweat gathering at the tip of the tuft, dripping to the ground below. Every time I see one, I can only think of a hairy armpit in my face at a festival, and a vagina on someone’s face. An untrimmed, 1980’s vagina coat.

Before I ever kissed someone with a big, bushy beard, I’d always imagined what that would feel like. Then I did kiss someone with a big, bushy beard and I found that I’d imagined with great accuracy, how gross it would be. The beard part. Not the mouth, lips, tongue part. Just the fluffy face pubes, like a million flies on my face, grazing their little wings just inside my nostrils. The man was beautiful, gentle charisma, funny as fuck, was my hero with a perfect nose, blue eyes bursting like sunbeams, sweetest soul and built like a tattoo covered giant in a cowboy hat…with a vagina face. I’d like to say that I’m patiently waiting for the trend to shrivel up and die, as patiently as a mother who hopes it’s just a craze as she observes her 13 year old son has just started smoking weed and listening to limp bizkit…. But I’m not. Patient that is. I’m so bloody over it. I am a single woman dealing with the stark reality that 95% of men fall into at least one of the following categories: boring, couldn’t handle a dinner party with me and my friends, can’t handle my job even though they say they have “no judgement”, have beards, have dad bods. Seeing a potentially cute face trying to claw it’s way to stardom through the obstructive curtains of a fluffy beard is such a waste. Makes me feel like a guy at a peep show who’s gold coins never up the game. In so many cases I can see the cute eyes poking out over the puff of vagina face, the suggestion of plump kissable lips, a cheeky smile (dimples perhaps???), but unlike many women considering a labiaplasty, the lips of the man never quite protrude from the bush with 100% transparency out into the open air.

Every time I notice myself having these hateful thoughts, maliciously imagining myself taking to this or that face with a can of shaving cream and a razor, I feel slightly ashamed. I’m embarrassed because years later, I have discovered common ground between myself and the hyena from the Lion King pissing his pants laughing over the Cock on a Box. Schlepping my way around judging this and that, minus laughter, add forlorn whimper. Fingers crossed it’s only a few months before you all look back at your beards in photographs and wonder “What was I thinking? My strong jawline is hidden. My perfect cheekbones…hidden. My eyes….look promising but overshadowed by the ramshackle garden of pubes on my face.”

This is my Christmas wish. That all beards be reduced to rough stubble or shaved entirely. It’s shallow and selfish I know. But I can’t help it.

 

Locker Room Series: #2

2009-08-07 17.45.26-1“Despite the Global Financial Crisis, Lolita, Tazo and Billie still know how to have a good time.” Circa 2008.

 

It’s not all 50 and 100 dollar bills cascading their way through the air and into our garter belts. It’s hard to keep your spirits up and make money when the club is dead. The men get swamped by girls, one after the other, after the other. The abundance of choice can turn a regular customer into an absolute cunstomer, adopting the distinctive smarmy arrogance of a man who can have anyone he likes. He can’t. Otherwise he wouldn’t be sitting in a strip club alone on a Tuesday being a basic dick.

Up against these odds it’s easy for us girls to become bitter, nasty, man hating, impatient, exasperated harpies. However, if you’re working at the right club, with the right people, non-profit organization nights don’t have to be a total drainer.

DRESS UPS IN THE LOCKER ROOM FIX EVERYTHING.

In an unfortunate turn of events over the last few years, the frequency of slow nights has increased and all the club’s costumes have been flogged by financially destitute strippers aka bitches who don’t know how to handle their money and/or love to steal stuff. Nowadays we prefer to pool our resources at the end of a night, make a run for someone’s house and raid the costume box to the sweet sounds of Hall and Oates. 

    

THE GRUDGE

I’m not a massive fan of horror films. Blood and guts effects me in a visceral way that I find hard to convey to people effectively when they’re trying to joyously recount their recent experience of having almost sliced their own arm to the bone, or even just ripped one of their hideous acrylics down to the nail bed. Basically I just want them to shut the fuck up before I lose control of my emissions and either shit or spew myself. Slasher movies terrify me not only for the imagery, but also because some fucker out there has actually conceptualized this extreme violence, and most likely some other fucker out there has carried it out in real life. The cogs in my brain continue to churn over and over this sickening probability well into the night, the next day, and the day after that. The trauma doesn’t end with the film credits.

Japanese supernatural horror on the other hand…. That shit is fucked up and I don’t know why but I love it. The Ring. The Grudge. My belief in the supernatural exists but is undefined so I can maintain my psychological distance. I have a hard time believing that evil spirits hang out in a video tape, waiting ever so patiently for SOMEONE to press play so that the spirit can emerge with the sole purpose of freezing the face of a random Japanese teenager into a hideous distortion they will be cursed with forever more. Although, in all honesty, it really would be my worst nightmare. To start watching a film with my looks in tact, not only to be horrifically robbed of the pleasure of a film which turns out to be nothing but static, but to also have my face twisted and frozen. In one foul swoop – shit movie, eternally fucked up ugly face. I guess it’s a good thing that nobody even has a VCR anymore so the evolution of technology has saved us all.

Knock on wood. I actually am superstitious.

There is a girl I have worked with in a couple of clubs here in Melbourne. We called her The Grudge. This sounds like I’m just being a snarky bitch but if you’d ever seen or worked with her you would understand. She really was just like The Grudge. Her demeanor, her glide, her face slightly downturned to one side so that when she spoke to men she would have to gaze upward through one half of the long straight black curtain of her hair. The effect was both incredibly eerie and mesmerizing. I’d watch her from across the room wondering what the hell she could possibly be saying to get guys into the rooms? Did she speak at all? She would literally seem to just appear next to a man and one hand would lightly move, with such fluidity and grace, to place itself on the edge of his shoulder or arm. She wasn’t a crotch grabber, or an ear licker when she hustled. She didn’t press herself up on, or drape herself all over the boys. She actively avoided contact with most of the girls she worked with, and as a result, who she was as a person just added to the mystery of The Grudge. The club lights never seemed to find her in full. She was luminescent and somehow the light seemed to refract as if passing through her, creating a hologram effect. It was weird. Or maybe my imagination is taking poetic license. Whatever. Hologram Grudge sounds good to me. She would breeze by cold and pale, receding into the dark pockets of the club. Lingering there, glowing as a ghost would. Existing. Watching. Then, spotting a man, she would get going for a glide. First she was here, and then, she was over there! As if by magic.

thegrudge

Once I was with a customer and I left him at the bar so I could check my podium times on the roster backstage. I was gone for no more than 2 minutes and when I came back The Grudge had one pale frosty hand on the shoulder of my guy. At my home club, us girls will just let each other know if a customer has been waiting for us so that the intercepting girl doesn’t waste her time. It’s accepted and appreciated for us to do things this way. As I was midway through extending this one liner courtesy to The Grudge, her downturned head sharply clicked upward by only a 22 degree angle, so for the first time ever, I saw her gaze lock straight forward, burning into my eyeballs. A strand or two of her perfectly straight Asian hair became dislodged. All of a sudden she looked distressed. Nay, psychotic, as she began screaming into my face. A blood curdling scream. Over reactive, hysterical, guttural, horrific…. I don’t know if I could use enough adjectives to describe how much over kill was laser beamed into this moment, searing a firey hole into the fabric of the universe directly in front of the male toilets.

“I’M SPEAKING TO HIM NOW YOU CAN’T COME OVER HERE UNTIL I’M FINIIIIIIIIIIIISHED!!!!! YOU SHOULD NOT DO THIIIIIIIIIS!!!!!”

The exclamation marks could continue indefinitely as well but I’m curbing them at five per sentence. It was as if she were seeing herself in the mirror for the first time…in a Japanese horror movie. Insert grudge terror pic here.

In this moment, I realized that I am not particularly good when it comes to confrontation with demons. My glib vocabulary and tinkling laughter evacuated the building and I was left with two raised eyebrows and an open gaping mouth, staring of its own accord at the spectacle. To be disgracefully honest, it was even worse than that as I’d only just had botox so my eyebrows were actually incapable of raising themselves. My brain was sending furious messages to my eyebrows to move skyward, and my paralyzed eyebrows were scrambling these messages to my nostrils, which, due to the scrambled directive and their own unique set of raising limitations, then flared out to their full capacity creating a generous circumference that had to be seen to be believed. Like a peacock fanning it’s tail, it was probably the most impressive nostril flare of my life. Her widened eyes and my widened nostrils were engaged in a face off. Literally. In the end my nostrils won by default as my customer finally regained his composure, lightly placed his hand on my shoulder and led me away, gliding across the floor in a state shock and triumph.

 

The Girl Had Wings

I was recently reminded of a glamorous stripper girl I worked with a couple of years ago. She was sweet as sugar and nice to talk to, until she started talking smack about my best mate. But that didn’t come to pass until a long time after her labiaplasty.

She had a voice like the gravel rubbing itself up and down the back of your throat after a hard night on the ciggies, and a dry sense of humor that suited her voice perfectly. She would arrive at work without makeup dressed in a hoody and pink velour tracksuit pants, looking like a day-to-day girl. Then the 2 hour transformation would take place….

Her falsies were in the top 5 biggest I’d ever seen. I’m talking about eyelashes…. She wore an excess of glitter and so many sequins and rhinoplasties, I mean rhinestones, that I felt absolute wonderment that such a stunning toothpick of a girl could manage all that extra weight without teetering over in the super tall sparkly platform stilettos that she wore around the club. She always wore white and shined bright like any diamonte being sold as a genuine Swarovski that I’ve ever seen. She was the sort of girl who’s favourite quote would be Marilyn Monroe’s “If he can’t handle me at my worst, then he doesn’t deserve me at my best.” Ugh. Pretty well suited to the kind of guy who would have “No woman no cry” as his life motto.

She did a little military drummer girl show that I actually really enjoyed. She was excellent at beating her own drum to the rhythm of somebody else’s song. There was something so sweetly aggressive about her performance in this particular Halloween outfit. As though she were really trying to bang it out there and show everyone that she didn’t give two fucks about anything except owning who she was and being a loud and proud stripper in a super hot fictitious civilian services costume. Here to fictitiously service you civilians and service you good. In a dancy way. I never saw that girl jump the gap between the two sex industries. And it is a HUGE gap for most girls to jump. But that’s a whole other chapter in itself.

Some girls dance like the devil in the pale spotlight so that they can travel. This girl liked to travel too. Thailand was her Number One, ichiban daisukidesu destination. Every time she returned she was loaded with goodies. One time at band camp, a plastic surgeon in Australia refused to perform the super size me, level up! augmentation she was craving so she was forced to take a tropical hospital vacay in trusty Thailand. She returned with tits so enormous that from behind she appeared to be a bronzed prepubescent girl dressed up in her mum’s heels holding basketballs close to her chest so that they bulged beyond her snowy egret frame, creating the silhouette of a fantasy cartoon of any Comicon attendee.

She told me in conversation that she had also had her labia trimmed and that it was the most painful thing she had ever experienced, and that the doctor gave her the option to keep the wings of her vagina in a little jar of solution. I was stunned. I wasn’t even offered my wisdom teeth when I got those fuckers hoisted out of my face. No one ever offered me the left over pieces of myself! Well, they offered them to her. And she graciously accepted her labia in a little plastic jar. Like the ones you pee into for a urine sample. The one with the yellow lid.

Forever more when I think of her, I will imagine her going home after the club closes at 7.30am and chucking her work bag on her bed with the frilly pink and white covers. I will imagine her peeling off her Top of the Charts lashes and beginning to ritualistically remove all signs of the night. Gently cleansing her body and face, soaking her white and tan-stained clothes in a bucket by the shower for the night. Going into her bedroom and getting down on her hands and knees to reach into the back left hand side of her wardrobe retrieving an old shoe box from the floor. Gently unfolding the tissue paper wrapped around her jar of vagina and holding the jar in her hands for just a few moments before she shakes it up a little. And as the glitter softly falls around the snow globe encasing the angel’s wings she used to have, she sits, counting her money.

The Big O

  
People often feel a little guilty about objectifying us girls when they visit a strip club. I guess that’s one thing to feel bad about if you’re an asshole about it. But it’s also condescending to think of strippers as victims of objectification. I mean really, no one seems to feel sorry for the 14 year old Kate Moss in that Calvin Klein campaign. It’s the very thought that turns it from an appreciation to an objectification.

It’s what a lot of women like to think so they can feel sorry for us and be safe because obviously we are all fucked in the head, which therefore makes us less appealing, and therefore less likely to steal the husbands or boyfriends of theirs that we have absolutely no interest in stealing. These concerned girlfriends and wives obviously haven’t heard that thing about how crazy girls are the best fucks in the forest because if they had they’d be increasing their benzodiazepine intake to allay their fears of members of orthodox or born again church groups; women living in isolation on self sustaining farms in bum-fuck-no-town-no-where bunking on mattresses stuffed with sustainably farmed organic straw in shipping crates collecting the hair shed from their bodies to reverently stuff the pillow of their long haired guru; and of course girls in mental hospitals who can be unpredictable and on all kinds of meds. And they certainly would not see the correlation between the benzo use of themselves and the latter. No need to worry so much about the strippers or the crazies. The kind of bitch who will go after your hapless man, powerless like a deer in tit lights, will not be contained to just one industry. That kind of bitch, is that kind of bitch, no matter how she makes her money.

It’s what a lot of men like to think so they can feel like nice guys when they ask you “What are you doing in a place like this? Doing a job like this? You’re such a nice girl. Funny. Smart. Beautiful. Sweet…” As though they are really, no I mean really seeing us as humans. As if you can’t be all of those things and take your clothes off for money. As if you can only be all those things if you star in Disney kids shows (ja cause Britney and Lindsay are such awesome idols for your children), or work with special needs kids, or work behind the counter at Baker’s Delight getting paid $12 an hour and stuffing your face with samples of sundried tomato pull apart bread all day long – I only say this because that’s what I’d be doing…. No offence intended for anyone who actually does work at Baker’s Delight. OMG and shit quality custard tarts!!! I would smash those all day every day til I was sweating sweet gooey custard that I could collect from my arm pits and scrape back into empty pie shells I bought from Woollies on a Saturday morning, refrigerate and then eat all over again in the afternoon.

On the nights that my humour is still in tact and guys ask me what I really do for a living, what income in a respectable trade I need to subsidise, I often tell them I work with people with special needs. People who dribble and sometimes even vomit on themselves, don’t understand social etiquette, have addiction issues, anger management problems, mental retardation coupled with sexual perversions, autistics from across the entire spectrum and people with Aspergers disease who don’t understand emotions and how their words and actions effect others.

“Wow! Really?? That’s so saaaaad. Those poor people. How long have you been doing that for?” Sometimes they get it. Sometimes they don’t. Sometimes I let them in on the joke. Sometimes I don’t.

“Yes, I really do work in community services…..in a way. Yes, sometimes it really does bring me down. It can be pretty intense. Yeaaaaaah.”

Sometimes nasty ladies of the 9-5 circuit come in and objectify us too. They sit at our podiums specifically to snarl and snigger at us and talk about our cellulite, or how their bff 4 eva sitting next to them is waaaaaay hotter than that girl on the stage, or how she has been going to Pole Divas for nearly 2 years now and is totally so much better at that descending angel inversion than that girl is…oh, and waaaaay hotter too. I imagine this last type of girl actually ends up demonstrating this inversion on a pole at 1 Oak in New York’s west side, or any which one of Melbourne CBD’s unsuspecting sign posts in the wee drunken hours of her “later that night” montage. Unashamedly displaying her g-banger and the half of her butt cheeks that drew the short straw and didn’t get to hang out the bottom of her skirt that night. This epidemic of pole rape is sweeping its way across many nations like wildfire. And it’s not due to globalization or climate change. I hope it never stops because it’s insanely entertaining and hopefully therapeutic cause these girls obviously have something they need to express that isn’t seeing the light of day or the dark of night frequently enough.

On the flip side of that female market there are also many feminists out there defending our rights as real people with real feelings and to them I’d like to say thanks for the sentiment of care but without delving into a muff that I don’t know that much about having never done that myself, us kids are alright! And if we aren’t, it’s not due to being objectified by strangers. If this were the case I’m pretty sure every girl who walks the street out there in pretty much every country, fat or thin, short or tall, would also be in a high risk category and worthy of an armed defence force and pamphlet literature containing A LOT OF UPPER CASE BOLD text.

To be honest, sometimes it’s a relief to be the object of my own heart’s desire. To just be a shell of a girl. Shiny and bright. Under lights that erase the imperfections of my body that I notice daily. Languid limbs dancing slowly to my own song on a pole in the middle of a snow globe. Suspended in time with glitter falling all around until the floor is covered in a life that seems brighter than the shit day you just had, the Aunty you visited in a hospice last week who’s skull is the most prominent feature of a face that once had a sparkle you’ll never forget. It can be your 20 minutes of peace that set, or your one accumulated one hour of happiness that day. Unless they play top 40 Katy Perry, Skrillex or any one of the empowering Pink ballads on the system. In which case your day is still fucked and the soundtrack to your nightmares has been decided for you by the DJ who is too busy getting a blowjob in the booth to care what kind of ear violation he is subjecting you to.

Objectification is in the eye of the beholder. Hold onto it, or let it go but please don’t spoof into my sparkle globe with your condescending cunt or cock confetti.

   

Ride on the Peace Train

I’m trying not to think about work too much at the moment, which is why I haven’t been writing much.

I moved back to my old club a few months ago cause my old injury just wasn’t coping very well with the 12 hour shifts and numerous trips up and down stairs in stupid heels to check podium rosters, not to mention actually doing the podiums through the night. My spirit wasn’t coping very well with bitchy, venomous girls talking trash about each other. And I really was just missing my ladies at my old club house. It took an anxiety attack and some serious pain in my old injury to actually push me back into the arms of my first club love.

But, unfortunately, as is often the case, I was in love with what once was. Not what now is. And when I say that, I just mean that the money isn’t as good there anymore. Thankfully the bikies and bottom feeder gangsta wannabes have moved on, but so too has the phenomenal money.

It seems inevitable that I will soon be back up the road. I have made my mind up that if I am to survive there, I will have to seriously adjust my behaviour. I can no longer afford to humour people by listening to them relay their drama with other girls. I need to keep my head in the clouds, high up above the whining tornado of cut throat narcissism. I need to keep my head phones in to block out the penetrating, high pitched sound of bitch.

Obviously I take no credit for the clip shown above.

I only ever had one beef up there, and it wasn’t even my beef. So inconsequential it’s not worth mentioning in detail. Suffice to say, the girl’s quarrel with me was laughable and her only accomplishment was to make herself look even more stupid, which was no mean feat.

I’m not the type to fight with my co-workers. In almost 7 years, I’ve had one proper fight. I am now friends with that lady. Fighting wasn’t really a significant part of the club culture where I was sprouted as a fresh little bean. Although there has always been a hierarchy, we had, and still do have, a sisterhood that many girls from any walk of life might envy. We watch each other’s backs and stand up for each other. I once had a couple of girls catch me crying backstage after an encounter with a particularly nasty Irishman. They asked me to point out who he was and then made their way over to casually spill a glass of red wine on his crisp, mean shirt. At my club house we don’t have any fear of other girls “stealing” our regulars, or cutting our grass, because it never really happens. And the girls who try to work that way are told to their face that their behaviour will not  be tolerated. They don’t last very long. It’s the girls who keep each other in line. Not management. And to be fair, it shouldn’t be the responsibility of management to tell their staff how to be good people.

Up the road things are different. I’ve never in my life seen and heard women treat each other so poorly. It was really awful to be around. Drama, drama, drama ALL the time. This girl is fighting with that girl, she meets up with customers after work to fuck them for money, she has diseases, she doesn’t have diseases that she says she has, they used to be friends but then that girl stole her regular, she was sleeping with the manager, she’s lying about this or that, she thinks she’s a fucking model, that girl has ‘stolen’ the moves from that other showgirl’s routine, blah blah blah who gives a shit blah blah blah.

But at the same time, there are a few girls that I really do miss. A couple of cheeky monkeys from behind the bar. Some locker room banter. And the money. It was ridiculous. The management are less inclined to treat you like a human being which has its pros and cons. Pros are that I worked really hard, I learnt not to be flaky cause I’m half Asian, therefore pretty stingy, and it would kill me to hand over a $120 penalty for cancelling my shift. Cons are, that when you really aren’t coping, and really and truly have a valid reason for cancelling a shift, they don’t care. And you know that you are just a number. Just another set of boobs and a vagina strapped into a pair of platform stilettos. That doesn’t feel very nice. It’s why I hated working in offices for big corporations. But at the end of the day, we might have off days, sad days, hormonal crazy lady days, our kids might be sick, our granny might die, but they are a business and their cogs keep turning. It’s not the way I hope to run my business, but it’s their way of doing business and I need to accept that and learn not to take it to heart.

If and when I do try again there, assuming I’m allowed back, I hope I don’t hear a bad word breathed about anyone, and I hope I can stay out of it all and don’t diminish myself myself as a person by partaking in any form of useless negative behaviour. I know I let myself get tangled up in nonsense. I want to be OUT of the loop. I want sunshine, lollipops and I want everyone to ride on the fucking peace train.

Not me. Not my photo. I was not alive in the 70s…