Several weeks ago, I went to the strip club. Not just any strip club, but maybe the nicest strip club in Detroit. I rode there in a limo, drank an entire bottle of champagne on the way there, and made it rain at the club. This is not really characteristic of me, and my behavior that night is not really indicative of what I’m usually like, but my brain is super fcked up right now and the shame system is not working at all. That’s great for me and terrible for me. Here’s the story:
My friend wanted to go to the strip club for her 23rd birthday. She has unusual inclinations, sexual and otherwise, so this was not surprising. I did not want to go. I really, really did not want to go to the strip club. This friend is a very good friend of mine. Her life has often been hard and bad for reasons that are not her fault. Refusing to go to the strip club would mean being a shitty friend and making my friend feel guilty about what she wanted. Understand, I had a moral obligation to go to the strip club.
I spent the two hours before we were picked up in an Excursion limo crying super hard about something stupid. Crying is really cathartic and I felt dangerously good afterwards. Inside the limo: my friend, a few of our mutual friends, her 18-year-old pal (!), two men in their 40s (!), and enough champagne for everyone to have their own bottle if they so chose. I chose. It’s an hour drive to Detroit and by minute 20 I was too drunk to pour champagne into my glass by myself. My friend and her bf had made a playlist which included “Beast of Burden” and “Fuck the Pain Away.” Vibes in the car were weird. It was one of those things in which people take part not because they think it will be fun necessarily, but because they think it’ll be so weird, so horrible even, that they will remember it forever. I will remember that car ride forever for how out of place and embarrassed I felt.
It was about 10pm when we got to the strip club. My friend had made reservations, but it didn’t matter because the strip club wasn’t busy at all. There were women there (our party was 90% women). I was expecting everybody to be super focussed on the strippers but it didn’t feel like they were. It was almost as if the strippers and the customers were there incidentally. When we got into the strip club, I was totally, totally wasted. I immediately started running up to random guys in the club and asking them if their wives knew they were there. I don’t remember what any of them said. I wasn’t asking because I wanted an answer. We settled at our tables near the strip club stage and started drinking glasses of water and chatting and watching strippers strip and I realized I was having fun. I was having so much fun. I sat about 10 feet back from the stage at first and talked to people in our party, and my friends sat right by the edge of the stage and started giving strippers dollar bills. Someone gave me dollars to give to strippers and I just put them in my coat. After watching my friends interact with the strippers for a few minutes I started to feel more brave so I went to the edge of the stage and fed a stripper a dollar bill from my mouth. It wasn’t sexy. If you know me you know that I look kind of childish or dopey or something, in general. It’s hard to explain, I think it was really funny though. One of my friends gave a stripper dollar bills and the stripper pulled her shirt down and sucked on her nipple. I think that might be illegal, but my friend was completely wild about it. I love to take pictures, I took a bunch of pictures on my phone, one of the bouncers ran over and told me that I had to delete all my pictures. There were like 40 or 50 and he watched me as I deleted them all. I didn’t feel weird, I felt kind of happy to be in trouble at the strip club. The bouncers told people in our party, “don’t let this girl take more pictures!! We will kick you out.” I took more pictures. They didn’t see though. I don’t remember everything that happened at the strip club let alone in any kind of chronological order but here are more things that happened:
At one point I went into the bathroom. It was really small, and there was an old woman tending it, and it was kind of like the bathroom at the club, there was gum, pads etc. I tried to take a piece of gum but the woman yelled at me that I needed to wash my hands first so I did. That old woman was the saddest person I have seen in a long time. She was despondent and I felt so bad for her. I wondered what the men’s bathroom was like.
The second best part of the strip club was that they were playing music videos (maybe MTV jams?) on TV, man, fucking love music videos. They played the song and video for “Instant Crush” by Julian Casablancas and Daft Punk and I freaked out because I love Julian and the mood of that song seemed wildly inappropriate for a strip club. I wonder(ed) if JC ever thought that his music would be played in strip clubs in Detroit. My heart really burns for Julian because he’s so sad and so beautiful.
The best part of the strip club was when someone in our party threw up on the floor of the strip club.
Shortly after the strip club vomiting, we left to go to a gay nightclub closer to home. I drank even more champagne and accidentally broke my champagne glass and thought it was so funny and made everyone look and take pictures. Very close to the nightclub, the person who threw up on the floor of the strip club threw up again on the floor of the limo, which is apparently a 300 dollar charge. My friend whose birthday it was felt that her vomiter pal was abusing her hospitality and started crying. It’s not surprising that she cried at her birthday party but it is absolutely shocking that she’s the only one who cried the entire night. There were so many good and bad things to cry about.
I’m never going to the strip club ever again.