Tears Of Joy

There are certain conversations that trigger nostalgic feelings within a person.  I’m talking about a little bell going off in your head shooting you far away into memory-land where you keep your most treasured or entertaining moments.  It’s nice to visit once in a while, even if it’s usually an impromptu drop in.

This is exactly what happen to me a couple weeks ago while I was making, what I thought was, light conversation with a girl I had began to see casually.

She had recently moved to Montreal from Europe to study. Being new to the city, I told her about the local arts and entertainment scene, the restaurants and eventually, the nightlife.

The conversation suddenly took a turn onto Awkward Avenue when I nonchalantly mentioned my deep fondness for strip clubs.  Apparently that was a NO for her.

There is one thing that is 100% guaranteed to plaster a huge smile across my face anytime. And if not, check my pulse because something is definitely wrong with me.  Strip clubs. I love’em.

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As I struggled to explain to this girl why titty bars made me so happy, a cascade of memories began to flood my mind. Suddenly, I’m at Miami International Airport and I have six hours to kill before my connecting flight. I’m with my best friend, Liv, we decide to jump into a cab, heading straight to South Beach.

I’m standing in front of the ATM pulling out yet another wad of cash that will end up in some strippers’ little lace pink thongs.  Worth it.  The machine is done producing a neat pile of crisp bills that I’m about to trade in for some ones so I can make it rain on these babes.  I turn around, Liv is sitting front and center of what is appropriately called the “perv row” of the strip club.  The host did not seat us there, but that’s ok because she’s tanked and I just slipped him an extra 20 – we’re good to go.  I make my way to her and find some Jameson shots waiting for me. We slam them back.

“Girl, I think we should slowdown, are flight is in 3 hours…” I don’t actually wanna slowdown, I just felt like that was the responsible thing to say, and I like to act responsible in strip clubs.

“Are you kidding me?? I’m just getting started… This one just said she liked my hair. That deserves a dollar right?” As she points ever-so-discretely to the pole dancer.

I didn’t get the chance to answer, Liv is already shoving a bill down the strippers bra.  What have I created? I remember the first time I took her out to a strip join. She was so clueless. Classic story.

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Years before Miami, I took her to this raunchy neighborhood dive strip club. I don’t know if it was open stage night, but we found ourselves surrounded by a bunch of Geri Halliwell lookalikes on meth.  Just to be clear, OG Spicegirls, not that reunion tour clean cut version, the old Ginger Spice with the clear platforms, the tacky pleather ensembles and the atrocious chola lipliner. You remember, don’t front.

The place was dead, and I’m pretty sure it had nothing to do with the three dollar cover charge.  I gave the host a ten and told him to “keep the change doll”. He did not laugh. Come to think of it, I don’t think I would of laughed either if I was wearing a cheap Moores three piece tux that clearly was not my size.

We headed to the bar and were quickly followed by a couple cash-hungry half naked girls.  Liv had no idea what to expect so I told her to follow my lead.  The strippers approached us and we bought them a round of drinks I would never dare to order for myself. I am not fourteen anymore nor on spring break, I’m good on the raspberry Sour Puss, thanks.

I was casually asking the stripper if she could bend over and touch the floor with her forehead, when the dancer who was talking to Liv tapped me on the shoulder.

“Do you mind if I dance for your girlfriend?”  She asked me.

Confused I responded, “who?”, then I realized she was referring to my friend, who had used me as her alibi in an attempt to dodge a grimy private twerk session.

“That’s NOT my girlfriend!” I blurred out laughing as I watched Liv’s eyes crucify me.

I had ruined her perfect little story, she would now have to sit through her very first lap dance.  She looked terrified. So I paid the girl to accelerate the process, and mostly to entertain myself at her expense, which ironically was at mine.

She returned from the back room with a huge smile on her face.  She had popped her lap dance cherry or witnessed the apparition of the Virgin Mary.  Either way, I was a slightly terrified of her grin – it looked like she had just had her first taste of blood.

Skip back to us in the random titty bar, killing time in Miami till we grab our flight home.

“I like that one, she’s hot.  I’m gonna get her to dance for me. You wanna watch?” Liv says to me incredibly distracted by the T&A around us, and she’s the straight one here.

Of course I wanted to watch, she was out of control and for once it wasn’t me.

We headed to a backstage private booth and I sat comfortably, while Liv asked the girl what she could touch.

“Everything” said the little brunette with the slamming body and high ponytail.

“Perfect” Liv responded enthusiastically, rubbing her hands together as if she was planning world domination.

“Elle you should go recruit a couple more girls, your lap is empty…” I disregarded the comment.  This was far more entertaining.

As I’m watching all of this, I couldn’t help but feel like my best friend has borrowed my personality for the night without asking my permission. This leads me to realize I’m a total perv, but also an awesome person to hit the strips with.

I pulled my head out of the clouds, realizing I could save this increasingly awkward conversation. This glimpses into my past experiences suddenly made me feel extra confident that I could show the European girl a good time at the club.

And that’s when I stopped talking, it was more of a monologue at that point, and decided to try and read into the fact that she had absolutely NO expression on her face.

I was confused.  How could the idea of drinking surrounded by beautiful girls undressing provocatively not generate the slightest reaction in her?  Was she a robot? Possibly.  I was gonna get to the bottom of this.

“So… Have you ever been to a strip club?”  I struggled to turn this into a bidirectional conversation.

“Yes. Once, in Spain.”  She said this stone coldly.

I smiled.  She did not.  Tough crowd.

“Spain, nice.  How was it?”  I asked enthusiastically, because I had finally gotten her to talk.

“After I left the club, I cried.”  She said with the straightest of poker faces.

Tears of joy?”  I asked with a playful smile.

Apparently, they were not tears of joy.  And I was now the number one insensitive asshole in the coffee shop.

At that specific moment, I knew we weren’t gonna make it much further.  And I’m pretty sure she felt the same way.

It can be hard to gauge how much information is too much information when you start seeing someone.  I am thankful I didn’t tell her about my “Stripper’s Eve” holiday tradition, however I don’t regret showing her my true colors regarding adult entertainment.  I don’t believe in serving up a polish little version of yourself on dates.  When keeping it real goes wrong, and you find yourself in an uncomfortable situation, try humor.  Clearly this is not the most successful example, well I laughed.

Peace, I’m out.

-Elle