EAT, SLEEP, RAPE, REPEAT. 

After a particularly harrowing night last week I haven’t been able to quite shake the blues after witnessing the fucked up aggressive behavior toward women and the ignorant attitudes (the most alarming was from a fellow dancer) that continue to enable this current trend of violence against women and rape culture as “not ok but to be expected” in certain contexts, or the old “She was wearing this,” “She does that for a living,” or “She looks like a girl who would….” .

The excuses I hear from men behaving badly over and over again about the conniving sorcery of the vagina as it renders men helpless in a flash of gash, robbing them of their basic sense of human kindness. The definition of ‘violence’ has become one so extreme and obvious as to obliterate the subtleties and manipulations most often deployed in order to effectively be violent….and not get caught. Basically the general feeling is that if you don’t get punched in the face, or visibly bruised, or raped, you haven’t really been a victim of violence. It hasn’t been that bad. Could’ve been worse.

I’m still processing why the other night has effected me so deeply. Nothing that fucked up happened to me in particular but I was there. In the thick of it. The extreme nature of the people involved in the events has burnt something into me. Rolling hills of fear, discomfort, sadness, adrenalin, disgust, anger, tension, violation, humiliation, embarrassment, confusion, disbelief. I keep seeing the faces and hands…fingers, hearing the roars, profanities and cries, feeling over and over again the sensation of being numb in myself but hurting on behalf of everyone else and beyond. Maybe those girls have forgotten it by now. I haven’t. I want to be able to sweep it to the side, watch my sadness for human kind float away like particles of dust. I don’t actively watch the news anymore. I haven’t since 2008. But even still, ensconced in this little girl’s bubble of a world that I have constructed for myself, the stories of brutal rape and senseless victim blaming in India, of some fat Asian’s stupid rape culture t-shirt at Coachella, the girl in Melbourne being stabbed to death in the light of early evening, have all made it through my strawberry flavoured hubba bubba barrier.

Photo sniped from thump.com and please note that @JemayelK is the guy who posted the picture, not the dickhead wearing the shirt.  

No one was violently raped the other night. Not as such. Not with a dick anyway. I don’t know. Does a finger shoved up a vagina or asshole without consent count? Does a giant Maori man fucked off his face on drugs licking a girl’s vagina while she is facing the other way, or the same giant biting another girl hard on the shoulder, or his Sydney Lebanese friend digging both hands into her ass so hard that I could see the dints of his nails and fingertips, count as violence? I’m inclined to say yes but for some reason, the reactions of people who are told this story or who were actually there, seem to indicate no. This is what makes my heart hurt days later. This is why my eyes still sting with the threat of tears. This is why my throat constricts and my breathing pauses as I actively try NOT TO FEEL IT. I am trying not to feel the way I SHOULD feel when I was in the same room over a period when all of these things were happening. Some things I was aware of, some not. I was doing my best to manage my guy, to distract him from the fingering, the arse smacking and grabbing, ear licking, that was going on around us so that he wouldn’t expect the same. His octopus hands were doing their best to wander, his energy within our dynamic was threatening to fracture, to stray from me and become a part of the pack. My eyes were on him. So I did nothing. I said nothing.

My sister is a science writer. She says we are in a unique position as strippers to have insight into many elements of primal behaviour that have stood their ground through centuries of evolution. Now she has me reading scientific papers on aggressive fucked up chimpanzee behaviour and the hypothesis that these correlate with that of humans due to both biological AND cultural similarities. I’m learning that sexual coercion and collective violence are common in both. That it’s not just an imagined phenomena that men are more likely to fuck your shit up, and that women go for men who will fuck their shit up. And that one of the biggest differences between Great Apes and homosapiens is that the male homosapiens SHOULD be advanced enough to over ride their biological compulsions to be total fucking assholes, and that the females SHOULD be advanced enough to know that they have other choices than to take it like a bitch. And it’s up here on my high horse, where the air is brisk and fresh, and everything seems so clearly laid out before my eyes, that I have to marvel at myself. It was only 6 months ago that I allowed myself to be violated. I did not defend myself. I did not speak out. My brain over rid my instinct and I paid that milk eyed toad faced predator and left without a word of complaint. When I was 14 years old I was in the room as my best friend was molested. It was subtle, it wasn’t obviously violent. Even so, I thought I knew something was wrong. I did nothing. I said nothing. I did nothing because all my life I have been trained not to speak up. I was taught as a child not to question people in a position of authority or care. As adults women are told not to be hysterical, not to over react, not to be emotional. To handle things without ‘causing’ drama. It’s always on us to fix our reactions, to tolerate the behaviour of others and adjust ourselves to cope. It’s wrong. This needs to change.

After a night like that all I want is to be held. To have a man I care for show me what it’s supposed to be like. Contact. Intimacy. Care. Tenderness. The right way to be naked in front of someone. The right way to be touched and admired. To be desired for more than my instagrammable arse and my perky boobs. The right way to have someone inside me. To be really seen, and valued, instead of just looked at and chucked a hundred dollar bill. To be wanted for more than just 10 minutes of possession.  To have someone see me as I really am as their eyes move over me, trace their fingertips from my forehead to my toes, up the back of my legs all the way up again to cradle the crown of my head. Just to remind me that that kind of thing really exists.

Advertisements

The Rise And Fall of the Vertically Challenged – Hitting Below The Belt

Ouwwwwch! My fucking vagina!
I stay cool. I make my face light while inside I battle my reflex to fold over
myself.
What the fucking fuck just torpedoed MY VAGINA?
I take stock of the people. Scan for signs of a smug expression, someone
trying too hard to act natural…
Did I walk into the corner of the pool table? A bar stool?
I look down and what the hell am I looking at, but a midget, or do I say dwarf?
Dwarf.
I look down at the dwarf.
“Did you just punch me in the vagina?”
He looks up at me, shrugs his shoulders and raises one eyebrow,
“Meh.”
Fucker.
I take dignified strides to the elevated DJ booth and climb the steps to his eye
level,
“Andy!”
Thrusting my arm behind me in the direction of my assailant.
“That dwarf just punched me in the vagina!”
When I turn my head my rigid index finger points at an empty space. The
dwarf now stands at the foot of the steps taking a long swig of beer and a hard stare
directly up into my butt cheeks. A snort and a ripple of laughter from the DJ booth
override the music blaring in the club.
The dwarf shrugs his shoulders, his eyes drill a hole through the fabric of my
outfit and into the center of my ass-universe.
“Ew!” I say, “Gross.”
“Meh.”
He walks a few steps to discard his empty beer.
I turn toward him until I feel my ass rest upon the booth door. Smirking, his
gaze settles on my chest. My tits have fallen out of my playsuit.
Oh yes, here I stand, righteously perched on the highest platform in the club,
beaming my breasts to an audience of 300 or more.
“Andy,” I hiss at the DJ, “That man punched me INTHEVAGINA. Aren’t you
gonna get security?”
“Can I have security to the DJ booth? Securityyy.” He croons.
Minutes pass until a tall lurch with a Viking beard and a shaved head ambles
over to Andy. They lean in toward one another, covering their mouths in the
exchange. Security straightens up and while he walks toward my assailant I consider
what response would best prop up the remains of my dignity as the dwarf is
escorted from the venue? A flood of breathless relief; a triumphant fist pump; or,
shall I hold myself above it all with dignity and refuse to acknowledge him at all?
The Viking bends over the dwarf, pats him on the back and laughs.
“This is a fucking joke!” Even as I clamber down from my perch I’m annoyed
by my poor choice of words. I push my way through the backstage door,
A dwarf, a DJ, and a stripper walk into a bar….
I imagine the trio swaying with laughter as they finish the joke I started.

Two flights down, sixteen steps each, four landings, five doorways to reach a
safe place. In the filthy cubicle of almost privacy I flick the toilet lid down with my
stiletto, furiously pull reams of z-grade toilet paper to cover a space big enough for
my butt and sit. Alone, weeping in a toilet stall at a strip club on a Saturday night.

How is this my life?

At 4.45a.m, I have to move my car and get back to the club before the car park closes
in fifteen minutes. The sky is still black but the street is lit with headlights and neon
signs. The summer city air thickened further by layers of noise, cars, drunkards, and
the echo of bass from the clubs. A roll of hot wind stirs trash and a confetti of debris
falls from the trees. It is the busiest time of night as the streets overflow with
clammy revelers hailing taxis back out to the suburbs or on the 24 hour clubs
outside the city.
Please night, end.
I don’t look much better. A puffy after-cry face full of reapplied makeup, my
track pants sagging off my ass, and a wife beater singlet with no bra. On my way
back to the club there is a commotion outside the kebab shop. The area is roped off
by police tape and a paddy wagon parked by the curb with flashing lights but no
siren. People stumble by underwhelmed. I crane my neck and I see him…
The Vagina Dwarf.
His hands are in cuffs behind his back. The police are hoisting him from the
ground into the back of the wagon.
Across the wide expanse of the intersection I hear myself yelling,
“SUCK IIIIT MIDGEHHHHT!”
People turn their heads to me, to him, back to me. Scrunching their faces at
the nasty shrew screaming with such abandon. I don’t care.

 

 

 

If you are enjoying this blog and are free to say you read about strippers, please share the link. Something to read on down time in the office when the boss isn’t looking….