I’ve been so bad about posting! I’m pretty active on Twitter, though, for those who need methadone-esque maintenance doses of ME!
So much to report. I might have to just post a CliffsNotes version for now.
I haven’t stripped in New Orleans since New Year’s Eve, when I made a paltry $500 compared with last year’s nearly 2K. The French Quarter scene has reached the point I can’t stand being around it anymore. I live two blocks off Bourbon and literally don’t set foot in the Quarter unless I need a Hustler store vibrator or alternative-to-Magnum stash of “large” sized condoms (spoiler, they often aren’t large enough, fucking vanity sizing.)
It got me down when I went to Planet Beach on Burgundy for my daily dose of Vitamin D tanning booth treatment and saw my shady coke dealer “friend” who has sold me $300 worth of cut, burns the fuck out of your nose, crap cocaine this week alone. You can’t set foot in the Quarter without running into one of those characters; they call them Quarter Rats pejoratively and I used to embrace the lifestyle, staying out at Alibi, Deja Vu, Three Legged Dog, Harrah’s Casino and every other stripper after work joint before heading home.
For the first time last January, I lost a friend to drug overdose. We were not terribly close, but it hit me somewhat hard because she and I shared the same birthday, only she was three years younger, to the day, the same birthday as a close family friend I associate with my youth and innocence. I knew she was a recovering junkie and she had a ton of meaningful tattoos. She used to not drink and I remember asking her how she managed, because every time I request “fake” drinks the waitress or bartender forgets and I get the real deal. Two summers ago, I migrated back North for the summer, as usual and when I returned to my home club, she was drinking. The managers would monitor her intake like hawks and even on our birthday (we worked until it struck midnight and took the following day off) they didn’t wanna let her take a birthday shot ’cause she notoriously couldn’t handle her shit.
What pissed me off when she died (at least I have that dealer friend on Facebook because I found out via his feed) is nobody stepped up to the plate with donating to the crowd-sourcing site created to cover her funeral costs. All these strippers, and granted, it was a very lean year in New Orleans this year, were donating $20, sometimes a little more. I felt sorry for her family that supposed friends who make consistent cash couldn’t pony up more; they almost had to simply cremate her following the toxicology report and skip a proper service. Sometimes people clam up when it comes to OD and suicide, for reasons of stigma, but strippers shouldn’t be that way. If I died, my family could afford to give me a dignified service AND pay off my negligible credit card/IRS debts. She was ultimately given a service, but I was out of town because, given the shitty climate in New Orleans, I’ve been traveling to Houston a ton, as well as Austin.
I adored Austin because you can walk through much of town, there are ample Zipcars and you can Kayak and do other sports right in the city. However, I’m probably moving to Houston for the simple reason it’s easy and cheap to go to New Orleans or Austin, as well as fly direct to Boston via Southwest. But mainly, of course, for the money and great local economy. I’m sorry to say I bagged the prerequisite program I was doing for a Psychology PhD and blew off my finals a couple weeks ago. I just decided it’s not my calling and I need to focus on writing for profit, while securing a part or full time dayjob and moonlighting as a stripper. I’m more than willing to ask my customers if they need secretaries, PR people, marketing writers etc at their respective companies. There’s a criminal defense attorney I especially enjoy who I’ve been meaning to ask. I keep joking with him that he wants to “turn me out” into his client and flip the situation, as he works with many strippers who are accused (falsely or not) of soliciting prostitution. (I also have to be careful not to be candid with “customers” (ie vice cops) asking where to find certain drugs, which would also get me arrested.)
So I went to Houston after an amazing time in Austin (albeit not as profitable as it should have been) and was planning to make at least 4-5K off the OTC convention crowd (oil men.) My voice was lost, my body was in a world of pain from working in Austin and my mental state was unraveling. I pretty much bagged working at all (just two nights out of a 7 day trip) so I could manage my mental health and unwind. I got some reading and writing done. I took a 36 hour Seroquel-induced nap that gave me dreams alternated with nightmares as trippy as a William Burroughs acid rant. I was out of Klonopin and Texas doesn’t fill controlled prescriptions from out of state docs, so I had to resort to the heavy sedative and the recharge felt nice. I was staying at an amazing Airbnb place (any traveling strippers who read this, hit me up for the listing, you’d love it and you get a fully stocked apartment with pool and hot tub for $60-$80 a night! Handy when hotels are $500/night.)
I’m not thrilled about my financial takeaway of the last fewl weeks, but ce la vie and nothing’s worth losing your mind and needing acute care like inpatient hospitalization. I made bank in Baton Rouge the other night and have gotten quite good at balancing time home in New Orleans with “paycation” strip trips to nearby cities. I used to resort to hitting up regular clients for bailout money. Now, I try my hardest to avoid it and constant travel, although overhead is high, keeps my cash flow consistent. I’m always a fresh face; I’m always someone who “if you don’t get VIP tonight I’m gone tomorrow!” I’m building regulars in several cities, namely Baton Rouge, Houston and a little bit of Austin. I should create lists for mass text messages when I visit each city. The travel is exhausting, but the cash flow is secure and I never run on empty anymore, even if I sit out an entire week I’d planned to make bank on.
I have a wonderful new therapist who does phone appointments, which is great given my lifestyle. I pay out of pocket. I can afford it. I didn’t haggle her when she told me her typical out of pocket rate; she just offered to charge $20 less for phone apps than face to face. She’s helping me do some soul searching and she’s non-judgmental. In fact, I’m able to make her crack up at least 1-2x per appointment, which makes me feel good, in addition to her sage advice and straightforward assessments.
I’m mainly working on relationships and trying to be IN ONE. I went nuts over a guy and got burned by being so impulsive it scared him off. I burned a guy myself. Now I’m flirting with not one, but three, guys who have girlfriends, one of which I’ve fucked three times, the others unconsummated/virtual. I’m too fond of playing with fire, though I know it burns. As my therapist put it, I’m ready not to revert to being the “other woman” and the “sidekick” anymore. As she put it, I want to play the leading role. Now it’s a matter of controlling this insatiable Id of mine (see I learned SOMETHING about Freudian psychology before dropping out!)
Watching a total hottie jerk off via Skype while his girlfriend sleeps so he can’t talk is hot, but he’s not leaving her ass. Fucking a retired male model in my steam room while his girlfriend sleeps sick with the flu is also hot, but am I going to win out in the end? No, it’ll run it’s course. I’ll move to Houston and never see him again. I’ve never had a psycho wife or girlfriend come after me verbally or physically, but I get off too much on the risk. I know I’m trying to fill a void, whether that void is my lonesomeness and black sheep status in the family, my lack of a healthy relationship with my sister, Dad and stepfamily, the loss of my mom, the desire for a more sustainable long-term relationship over the “quick fix” whatever…..I know I need to change to achieve the goal of a true relationship. I need to set my standards for myself and romantic partners higher. These things are so obvious; it’s doing them that’s the hard part.
I suppose that’s enough for now! I hope to be updating more regularly in the near future. There are plenty of small stories and anecdotes that I’ll have to save for later, but that’s the overview for now!