Life at TJ's Place
Saturday, April 03, 2004
One of our dancers, Logan, loves to dance to Bob Seger. She’s 21 years old and she gets it. She walks to the stage slowly as the opening to Night Moves is playing. The guys, who average 40 years old, go insane. They know the song. They remember what it means. And she is their black-haired beauty with big, dark eyes. While the song plays, I just sit back and watch like everyone else. She owns the room. Some of the girls are afraid of rock songs like this, with long pauses and no bass and drums. They don’t know what to do when there is nothing telling them to move. Logan loves to move in the long silences, and the men at the stage love it too. The focus is all on her. She has long black hair and dark eyes. If you saw her dance, you would never forget it.
Thursday, April 01, 2004
Towards the end of the night three of the dancers and a waitress watched Extreme Makeover Home Edition on television. There was another girl (me) watching with them. I have seen every episode so far, and this was actually the second time I saw this one. This is dialogue from The Big Lebowski:

Big Lebowski: Are you surprised at my tears, sir?
Dude: (taking a pull from a joint) Oh, fuckin’ A.
Big Lebowski: Strong men also cry. Strong men…also…cry.

Strong men also cry. Wimpy strip joint managers also cry.

My previous post was disgusting, by the way. He's disgusting. I hope he dies soon. I hope he doesn't have grandchildren.
Wednesday, March 31, 2004
Dom is a guy who comes into the club. I think he’s what us Midwesterners call a “snowbird” who goes south for the winter. We don’t know his real name. Dom stands for Dirty Old Man (one of the dancers made that up, which I thought was fairly clever). He is in his late 60s or early 70s, your typical old pervert: Bermuda shorts (in the summer), dark socks, sneakers, and usually some sort of Hawaiian shirt. His legs are frail and hairless. He has an old military-style flattop haircut and he always seems to need a shave. He smells like dirty scalp.

His routine is this: he comes into the bar in the afternoon, purchases a glass of iced tea and sits down by himself far from the stage (you would be surprised to know that many of your creepiest, borderline dangerous customers are guys who come in and drink iced tea or orange juice and no alcohol). After a couple dancers have been on stage, he begins getting fidgety. He squirms around in his chair and is very busy with his hands, wringing them together and acting shaky. If you worship college basketball and your team is behind by one point for the national championship, imagine yourself watching the last ten seconds of the game. This is the way Dom looks. Eventually he starts touching his thigh with his right hand and playing with the hem on his shorts. He never has actually masturbated out on the stage area, but he comes awfully close. At this point, I send a bouncer over to ask him to calm down. He very enthusiastically complies, nodding his head, “Oh, you bet, son, you bet. Will do…will do, thanks.” (This is what Big John told me once; I won’t go near the guy.) I have told the dancers never to approach him. My bartender Mitch has asked me 20 times if he can dump a glass of ice water on Dom, but I say no. I don’t want to have to explain to the police why the dead man with the erection on the floor is soaking wet. Mitch says we’ll tell them he had a heart attack and we tried to revive him. I tell Mitch that the cops would then arrest us just for being a couple of fucking morons.

Eventually, Dom gets up and walks to the bathroom with a visible hard-on. He comes out two or three minutes later without one. He walks through the dance area and doesn’t so much as offer the girl on stage a glimpse. I pray that he is at least rubbing it out in the toilet.

Monday, March 29, 2004
We had our team meeting with the dancers yesterday to inform them that used condoms were being found in the VIP booth and that one of them was doing a little more than dancing (after a week of speculation, I’ve concluded that the dancer is either giving a handjob or allowing the guy to masturbate while she dances for him). Two of the girls were not at the meeting, which was a major disadvantage for them because they both moved quickly to the front of the pack as suspects. By not being there, the other girls were allowed to talk freely about them. The suspicion will be hard to undo.

As I expected, our veteran dancers (all three of them no older than 25) were outraged. They are honest dancers, two of them are single mothers, and I know at least one of them saves and invests her money. They view jerking-off customers like honest baseball players react to steroids: it’s an unfair advantage and it gives their profession a black eye. The dressing room will not be a pleasant place for the next week or so, especially for the young ones. I feel bad for a couple of the newer girls that I know aren't doing it. I'm going to remind myself to talk to them.

Illinois lost to Duke Friday night. It sucked. Next year, the Fighting Illini will be stacked. We will be back.

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