I was pushing a year as the stripper when I walked in to Scores, The Mansion on Bourbon Street. I had danced at small strip joints like Pussy Cat Cabaret and Pumps a transient place for spoiled rebellious trust fund kids and hipster chicks from Bushwick, dressed in American Apparel sexyonesies, educated, articulate, well-read. And a month in Flashdancers, Private Eye and New York Dolls, inundated with uneducated but friendly Latino women and Russian bitches, hungry and angry, ready to be abused and treated like slaves by rigid watch-dogs managers, supervising the floor every minute, hired by A Father and A Son, theGodfather and the Godfather Junior. But it was rarely exciting or interesting.
Walking into Scores was like traveling to Columbia during Pablo Escobar Times. Walking into Scores was like discovering Wild West. Walking into Scores was like opening a new chapter of Huckleberry Finn.
“Hey, I am new to the city and new to the club. How’s it working out for you here? I ask a tall white girl with marble color skin tone and aristocratic features.
Not bad. Up and down of course. But not bad. I work mid shifts, from 4 till 11, after midnite it gets too intense here. I am Carey, by the way. Victoria in the club. She smiles and kisses me on the cheek. “You are pretty. I love your accent”.
We sit together by the bar. It’s still early. Unlike neurotic East Coast, NOLA gals must have at least a couple martinis or tequilas or 5 glasses of champagne before they can utter a word, hit the podium and approach a customer. “Alright, Alex, I actually think I might quit this and go back to my other job, real estate job. And I will do sex cams from my home when I move into my new place with my boyfriend. I am getting tired of this – drinking, waiting for customers. And once I move in to my new place, I want you to come over. There’s an outdoor swimming pool, we also have a balcony, we’ll chill, have a glass of wine, chat about nothing.
I get excited about the idea of making friends with Victoria. I already imagine a chill Louisiana day in a tastefully decorated apartment.
The Club gets busier and I focus on hustling and approaching customers and making benjamins. The busty woman who has been around since the Declaration of Independence is working on 2 men. I approach ’em and start a conversation with a nicely dressed man in his forties, wearing a crispy white shirt, nice fit jeans, shoes and a rolex on his wrist. He doesn’t see me, his eyes are fixed on her bust/vintage bosom. I can see I am not his type. Until I open my mouth.
“Excuse me, Sir, You look familiar. You look like a younger and handsomer version of Bill Murray from the Groundhog Day.”
He turns to me and smiles. He likes the comparison. He does looks like a young Bill Murray. A forty something, rosy checks, looking all suave. After treating my winter blues with Groundhog Day, watching it just over two hundred times I developed a crush for all men slightly resembling Bill Murray. Bill Murray is a God. After a small talk we go for a few lap dances.
“Look honey, you will be the perfect woman for me if we add her boobs to yours, he said, jerking a thumb at the Declaration of Inependence Woman. “I can even pay for your boob job.”
I cringe but produce a staged laugh. “No thank you, I support everything organic and natural.”
” It’s fine. Look honey with a perfect hiney, I need a gal like you. I’ve been married a few times. I’m getting separated. My last one is beautiful but cuckoo. I need a break. Let’s go to Miami! I’ll treat you nicely, whatever you want, shopping, things…”
I flush. I’ve heard stories like dat. Maybe it can be me too. I toy with the idea of getting laid by a wealthy Bill Murray Man.
I pout, “Dunno, maybe. But we should go out first.”
” Of course, let’s go out tonite. Now? “.
“I am getting off from the club at 9pm.” I say.
“No, worries, we’ll do it another day, soon.” He hugs me, and kisses me on the lips.
He leaves and I get a little sad. I give a few more lap dances, make $300 towards the end of my shift. The club gets empty at 10pm on Sunday and I am ready to live. My eyes are looking for Victoria. I spot her sitting in the corner with a shady customer. Her eyes are hazy, her head is nodding. Her speech is blurry. “Alex, dear, how did ya do gal? I made $400 with this customer upstairs. I’ve had too many drinks. I shouldn’t drink more. You see, I take medication, anti-depressants so I shouldn’t drink but I drink anyway…”
I leave the club turn right on Roayal street, throw a few bucks to a musician and a performer doing a real stunt – a bold ugly monk defying gravity. I never see things like that in New York. It’s better than a freak show on Coney Island. I go back to my Decatur studio, soak myself under hot shower, go to the kitchen and get cold crawdaddies, which taste even better than the day before. I suck their salty spicy juices and think about a Bill Murray.