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Anna Undercover: Downside of Stripping

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This entry was written at the request of LJWorld.com user @sassypants.

Can you handle yourself at work when things get tough?

If your job includes a roaring crowd, free-flowing alcohol, and drunk people three times your size grabbing at you possessively when security is 20 yards away, I certainly hope you can.

Ever since it was a punk rock Mecca, the Outhouse has never been a place for the faint of heart. At a place like this, there is plenty that could qualify as a downside.

To start with, for a sales job, it is incredibly physical. I have to walk around half-naked in 6-inch platform heels. I deal with insensitive jerks every day. And I have to dance naked on a stage in front of those insensitive jerks. The same group thinks it's OK to throw crumpled up dollars at me, rather than tip me like I'm a human being. They treat me with disrespect.

Two Weeks Ago: Me: [flirting/trying to get a dance] "I got all pretty tonight just for you guys!" Mildly Drunk Guy: [with a look of disgust] "Oh, I'm sorry."

About a Month Ago: Me: [after giving a dance] "Thank you, sweetheart! That was really fun." Really Drunk Guy: [slurring his words] "You need a boob job."

Guys grab my arm too hard. They grip my thighs roughly when I'm giving them dances. You can see fingerprint-shaped bruises all over me the next day.

I've had near misses with cigarette burns when smokers try to tip me on stage. The drinkers sometimes spill beer on the stage. It makes me slip. They complain when I tell them to follow the rules. Then they try to get me to sleep with them.

I dance my ass off for these same people. Most Sundays, I wake up after all this work with muscles so sore I can't even move.

Don't you ever complain about your job again, you pansy.

How would you deal with all this abuse?

Do you know what to do when some Bubba grabs you and won't let go? What about when 20-somethings are nearly burning you with their cigarettes and sloshing beer on your stage while the bouncers are otherwise occupied?

Will you panic when a group of six guys closes in on you and starts tugging at your skimpy clothes like sharks playing with their dinner?

When I took this job, I would have said no to these questions. But the fact is, I was born to take charge of this crap. Staring these exact situations in the face, I learned fast that not only could I get out of these predicaments in one piece, I was passing these tests with flying colors.

I know how to let Bubba know who's boss, and I can make him like it, too. I can command those disrespectful 20-somethings when they've used up their chances. And when I stood in the middle of five or six guys who suddenly closed in on me, I applied the lesson of a small crab in a final scene of 'Finding Nemo.'

"Hwaaaa!" I struck an exaggerated martial arts pose, mock-threatening those very serious potential assaulters with my untrained fists. They backed off, laughed, and tipped me. Even the one who was really freaking me out gave me a dollar.

Luckily, there are more good guys out there than jerks, and the good experiences far outnumber the bad ones.

Bullet-proof self-esteem, confidence, humor, and a newly discovered ability to move quickly from a sweet, flirtatious girl to a commanding figure with authority have helped me thrive in this environment over the past 10 months. I never knew I had so much of this.

Outward Bound's Web site says they offer "programs [that] emphasize personal growth through experience and challenge in the wilderness."

I submit that I've discovered a more lucrative alternative.

What's it like when things get tough for you?

Comments

kiklu 5 years, 2 months ago

I'm so glad that you're taking some martial arts training. Also, I'm impressed with your poise in situations that would drive me batty.

P.S. I took a week or so off of work and the interwebs so I could recharge my batteries. I've finally caught up. :)

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@kiklu :) The Interwebz are very glad to have you back.

vuduchyld 5 years, 2 months ago

Excellent post, Anna. I think it gives a reader a slightly different perspective of yours that we seldom get.

I've certainly never had a job with the same physical challenges, nor have I been objectified and/or threatened physically. In my career, the most difficult days have been management stress...when, for example, you have to lay off 20-30 people (or more) not because they did anything wrong, but because economic conditions have changed the business.

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@vuduchyld Thank you. Writing it felt good--you guys need to know this stuff and I should try to get it out there more for you.

Oh my god. I can't imagine having to have that conversation once, let alone with 20-30 different people who suddenly realize, right in front of you, that their lives are about to change significantly whether they like it or not.

grammaddy 5 years, 2 months ago

It takes a strong woman to do what you do! Keep up the good work.

Christopher Gentleman 5 years, 2 months ago

Very well written. I still love to read your point of view. It's interesting and completely different from most others out there. The fact that you can take on such diverse subjects is amazing.

remember_username 5 years, 2 months ago

I'm curious, do male strippers experience similar conditions to those you describe? Do you know any that could be queried? In my youth I worked as a scab for a few weeks and the females on the picket lines were many times more aggressive than the males.

Do patrons who arrive in groups act more aggressively than those who are solo. If so is that a function of alcohol? As those in groups probably (hopefully) have a sober designated driver as opposed to solo patrons who must restrict alcohol consumption. Or is it a function of social aggression?

A feature of your job you haven't mentioned is that some of the best people watching can be done at a strip club. Some of the most basic behaviors are all there to be observed and you have a front row seat to the show. Keep the blogs going if you can as they're very insightful.

Mel Briscoe 5 years, 2 months ago

i'm so tired today i don't think i should comment on this blog. don't want to come across as a collosal grouch.

have a good day, anna.

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@remember_username It's far worse for men. Women act absolutely out of control at male strip clubs. I haven't been to one, but I've seen incriminating pictures of my own friends doing horrible things you'd be thrown out of our club for. (And probably arrested). They put up with incredible behavior, and they have to, to make their money.

They make far more than we do. I am a bit busy right now, but I can write it down that I need to find one for general questioning.

There is at least one interesting study on female aggression/leadership behavior that I really like. Was published by or through UMass Dartmouth. Authors are Mary Caprioli and Mark Boyer, if you're interested in checking it out.

Is the female aggression a function of alcohol? No. Not in my view. I think people are sometimes surprised that contrary to popular belief, we are not made of sugar and spice. I think we are frequently surprised to discover this ourselves.

About 30% of the groups I encounter do have a designated driver who declares him/herself.

Thank you for the compliment. :) I'm glad you like the blog.

acg 5 years, 2 months ago

I heard that women behave wayyyy worse than men in strip clubs. They basically abandon all sense of tact and decorum and paw at those poor guys like a fat chick going after a porkchop. I don't think I could do what you do, Anna. I would smack the holy s**t outta some slob and then they would fire me.

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@acg A lot of the time, you can smack the holy s**t outta the slob and you won't get fired because they deserved it. :) Unless you have a bad reputation, in which case it can get you fired pretty quickly. :P

But 'fired' has a whole different meaning in this world. I'll have to post on that some time.

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@bridg137 With apologies to the well-behaved gentlemen who do help make my job such a joy:

OSHA's powers are perhaps limited here. It cannot correct the way Kansas has trained and raised its boys into men who think it's OK to behave this way.

gatekeeper 5 years, 2 months ago

Why do you strip if the job sucks so bad? I hear so many people complain about their jobs, but they keep working in crappy environments because of the money. The one thing I've learned as I've gotten older is that money isn't everything and it truely doesn't buy happiness. I would rather scrub toilets for low pay and not be harassed on the job than do something that put me at risk, but paid well. Too many people put their work over their families too. No amount of money is worth missing time with your loved ones. I was offered a job a few years ago that would have almost doubled my pay, but required me to be in Asia 3-4 months of the year. I stuck with much lower pay so I could be here with my husband.

No amount of money is worth risking yourself or your happiness over. You should try to get out of your line of work and into something that you can be happier with and that doesn't put you at risk.

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@gatekeeper As I've said many times, I love my job! As I demonstrated above, it's empowering that I can handle these situations.

Winning---it's just so fun.

Re: spending time with loved ones: I promise I work less than you, dear.

If you're afraid of what I've described, maybe you should try it for yourself.

Lawrence Outward Bound!

Vic 5 years, 2 months ago

@gatekeeper

I think every job has an element of risk. Some more than others, obviously. Some risks are physical. Our dear Anna risks her physical well-being and has to put at least some element of trust in complete, and often drunken, strangers. Some are emotional. I have read on multiple occasions Anna coming home in an emotional wreck or in physical pain. But can you tell a construction worker, someone who possibly puts themselves in greater physical danger than Anna to hang up the hard hat just because the job is dangerous? How about the social worker who helps people but sometimes can't help but weep at the squalor that some of the people are forced to live in? Should she try something new to preserve her emotional well-being? Everyone must decide what amount of punishment they are willing to endure verses the amount of money they can make from doing it.

acg 5 years, 2 months ago

The only prob with that scenario gatekeeper is that happiness don't pay the rent! Ever tried to pay for housing, car, clothes, food, utilities, medical expenses, etc. on a salary made from scrubbing toilets? The average pay for a housekeeping position is $8.00 per hour. At a gross amount, full time, that's $16,640 a year. Can you pay all of your bills with that amount of money?

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@Vic and @ acg It's not that I enjoy being abused, but I would definitely say I get a huge rush out of handling it so well.

Huge source of my narcissism.

lindseydoyle 5 years, 2 months ago

"They treat me with disrespect. " LOL. If someone is forcing you to do this you should go to the police.

b_asinbeer 5 years, 2 months ago

Sorry to hear about the downsides of stripping. I try to act like a gentleman when I go to the Outhouse, even with a little alcohol in me. I know and can handle my alcohol. Most people that cannot are most likely the ones that grab and insult you.

One thing I cannot also stand is guys proposing for "something extra". I've never done it, but it just goes to show that a lot of people do see you as objects and this is unfair. What are your thoughts on this?

lindseydoyle 5 years, 2 months ago

"a lot of people do see you as objects and this is unfair. What are your thoughts on this?" They put themselves out there as objects and profit thereby. What's unfair about that, b-asinbrown-noser?

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@lindseydoyle LOL. If someone is forcing you to comment without reading this entry all the way through and then reviewing subsequent comments from other readers, you should hide from this part of the Internet.

;) I mean that in the nicest way.

@b_asinbeer :) I know you behaved well the other week, or I'm sure I'd have made it known that you didn't, lol.

The abuse doesn't bother me because I have the right personality for this job. I'm fascinated that I can handle it! I used to be so demure. I feel like I've come out of a shell or something.

Re: guys asking for things outside of my job description: It comes from them seeing us as objects to some extent, perhaps, (like when they try to force their girlfriends into liking the idea of a threesome while they try to pick me up) but I would say there's a stronger case that it comes from them just not understanding the kind of playtime that's at hand. I think that because when I turn these guys down, they act like spurned suitors.

I will never forget, though, when these two guys came over to me as the lights came on at the end of the night, and said: "How do you feel about... [they paused for effect] stepbrothers?"

I almost died laughing. I just couldn't help it. I called another girl and a bouncer over to witness what they were saying because it was just so unbelievably nuts.

Luckily, they just laughed with us.

b_asinbeer 5 years, 2 months ago

doyle-

Very mature response.

When I go to a strip club, I don't just go and get a dance from anybody. I like it when the person I'm about to get a dance from has a personality and talks. Many times I get asked if I want a dance and that's it. That's a big turn-off for me, and I shoo them off in a nice way. So, it's not all about looking at them as an "object". Asking Anna about her thoughts on it is wrong?

If you don't like it, stay off this thread. Yeah, it's that easy.

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@b_asinbeer A lot of guys prefer to talk and then get a dance. I'm sorry so many girls just ask you if you want a dance. I'm glad to hear you turn them down in a nice way. :) We always prefer that.

@lindseydoyle Please don't make personal attacks on other commenters.

gatekeeper 5 years, 2 months ago

acg (Anonymous) says…

The only prob with that scenario gatekeeper is that happiness don't pay the rent! Ever tried to pay for housing, car, clothes, food, utilities, medical expenses, etc. on a salary made from scrubbing toilets? The average pay for a housekeeping position is $8.00 per hour. At a gross amount, full time, that's $16,640 a year. Can you pay all of your bills with that amount of money?


It depends on how you want to live. Yes, I have lived off of the wages earned scrubbing toilets (which by the way usually pays about $12+ an hour now through the big cleaning service companies). I put myself through undergrad and grad school scrubbing toilets and doing other part time jobs. I could pay my rent, bills, etc.... I know a lot of people that live on lower pay so one parent can stay home with the kids. There are many things people can do without and get by on a low wage. My personal opinion (which many of you act like if you disagree with anna or your views we aren't allowed to voice our opinions) is that if you feel degraded in your job, why do it? Anna is young and could do many different things, but choses to do a job in which she states she is disrespected, they physically hurt her and abuse her. No amount of money is worth that. She has many opportunities out there (she's young, educated), but is chosing to do this job.

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@gatekeeper I don't feel degraded by my job at all. The list of abuse was definitely intended to be from what an outsider's perspective might be.

I did a poor job of conveying this, I see.

I also wanted to make the point that I have the right personality for an environment rife with these issues that might really injure the next person. I'm doing a great job. I don't need anyone to save me. I'm extremely happy with what I do. It's why I write about it ad nauseam.

monkey_c 5 years, 2 months ago

b-asinbeer says, "I try to act like a gentleman when I go to the Outhouse" Oxymoron Anna, I know you like to read the dictionary so you know I am not making a personal attack on b-asinbeer.
I personally think "b-asinbrown-noser" is funny. I'm sure he can handle it...nothing like the crud you apparently have to put up with.

monkey_c 5 years, 2 months ago

Ad nauseem - to the point of nausea I would agree

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@monkey_c Are you implying that you think it's OK to behave like a jerk toward the women who work at strip clubs?

monkey_c 5 years, 2 months ago

Absolutely not. These fellows should be on their very best behavior or get tossed out on their rears. What I am implying is that the mear act of going to the outhouse is not a very "gentlemanly" thing to do. I'm sure they can be a sweet and great as the next guy. And, to each his own. But the term gentlemanly has a specific meaning to me and it does not include going to the outhouse.

Vic 5 years, 2 months ago

I think this is returning to a point I made in one of your earlier blogs, Anna. Society's perception of a stripper and what to do in a strip club. Some may decide that they are going to be drunken fools, ask for or attempt to do things they are not allowed, disrespect the dancers, and cause just general mayhem. I would think much of this happens with or without alcohol, so I don't think that is necessarily a factor, just an amplifier.

jwsuber 5 years, 2 months ago

I loved this post. Someone once said the root of all humor is tragedy. At the ELB, tragedy is on display in everything from prat-falls to the seven deadlies, but with the right attitude it all becomes Outward Bound indeed! Genius.

KansasPerson 5 years, 2 months ago

I think it would be cool if they did a Retro Night at the ELB. I mean REALLY retro. The dancers could do fan dances and maybe Anna could do the famous Bubble Dance a la Sally Rand. Maybe someone else could copy one of Gypsy Rose Lee's famous stripteases. The clientele would probably be a bit surprised, but what's life without a few surprises?! Besides, I bet it's really difficult to do a fan dance (to do it well, I mean) and it's always fun to learn new things!

p.s. I had pad thai for lunch and it was really good.

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@rantor This information will come as a surprise to some of my more conservative customers. Please try to keep it under wraps.

@KansasPerson The girls would totally do that! We would get a kick out of it. And as long as our regulars eventually get to see us naked, they're thrilled.

Pad Thai = awesome.

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@Vic You're right.

@monkey_c I like your follow-up post.

KansasPerson 5 years, 2 months ago

Okay, then I guess you ought to start now with the feather-collecting, because it looks like it takes a LOT of feathers to make a couple of fans!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QTEIWK... (Wasn't she beautiful?!) (do you think the feathers would tickle and/or make you sneeze?)

I can't find a video of the bubble dance. Unless you count this. :)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ImorDqwQtjM (dance starts at 5:40)

lindseydoyle 5 years, 2 months ago

 The last time I went to one of these places the girl physically put my hands at my side and said, "No touching!" I had no intention of touching her. In fact, I didn't necessarily want a dance but was accomodating her. What's the point of getting worked up for nothing? I miss the old joints. The girls were not mercenary show poodles but had personality. They were ecdysiasts who danced for the love of it.
They made money on stage, waiting tables, collecting for the juke box or you could buy a girl a "drink" and talk to her. She would get the profit on the "drink" which was really just a coke. I miss places like the Golden Horseshoe, Trop 56 and Hazel's outside of Pomona. Hazels was more like the local pub with as many boys as girls.
Now we have someone who is totally self-obsessed and seemingly proud of her thick skin and hardness of heart. Must be a Leo. I had two strippers like her live with me for a while so I know what they're like.

beawolf 5 years, 2 months ago

Interesting blog. A nice perspective about a rather taboo subject (for newspapers). I've never been to the Outhouse, but have been to All Stars and the Flamingo (?). I can't say I really enjoyed either experience. It's kind of like being served a huge juicy steak and then being told you can only look at it. That said, you've given the whole scenario a nice "human" touch that's difficult to understand just by going to a strip club.

somedude20 5 years, 2 months ago

Back in my younger days when I was stationed at Camp Lejeune and Kaneohe Bay, my friends and I would go to strip clubs and it was fun as a kid. Being a bit older now, and I hope a bit wiser, stip bars seem like a waste of money. I can go to a "real" bar and drink cheaper with a much more realistic chance of "hooking up" than the strip club. I guess you could say that strip clubs are like a Burger King, hot,fast,ready, less work involved to get the girls naked but not as fulfilling as a four course meal

Vic 5 years, 2 months ago

@b_asinbeer

rantor & monkey's comments are all about the perception they have regarding the situation. The muslim comment may have to do with the commenter's perception of muslim men and how we have been told they treat women. The oxymoron comment refers to the commenter's perception of a gentlemen going to a strip club. Too many stereotypes out there marring our perceptions of people. I applaud those who break these stereotypes.

lindseydoyle 5 years, 2 months ago

"Well you're nothing but a party girl, like a million more all over the world." Elvis Costello

KansasPerson 5 years, 2 months ago

RETICENT_IRREVERENT (Anonymous) says…

"KP, your youtube fan dance link does not work. I Binged “youtube: fan dance” here is the link I got http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SmKCwe…"

Ewww, no, not that! I don't know why my link doesn't work. But if you go to youtube and search on "Sally Rand fan dance" it's probably the first one that comes up. Sorry for the confusion and lack of feathers.

denak 5 years, 2 months ago

Anna does not "risk" anything at her job.She is not a victim. She choses to work in an environment that degrades and abuses her. She choses this. She is not forced into it. And contrary to what some people think, "Anna" is not a young girl. She is a woman in her middle 20's with supposedly an Ivy League education.

If "Anna" really wanted a job that would empower her, put herself at risk physically and actually contribute to her self-esteem, she should join the military. Maybe then she would learn the difference between her false sense of empowerment and real empowerment.

KansasPerson 5 years, 2 months ago

Sorry to be picky denak, but she "chooses" -- not "choses."

Secondly, as on January 4, you are again claiming that Anna has an Ivy League education. She made it clear that she has never received a degree from an Ivy League institution.

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@denak If the military has a naked hand-to-hand combat unit that sleeps til 3pm and has as much freedom the Outhouse--no weekly schedule, I can just show up when I feel like working--and pays me just as much, I'm all about it!

@lindseydoyle Looks like your work here is done. :)

@somedude20 Plz. We are awesome. :)

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

In related news, I am sore from my awesome Krav Maga lesson today! Look out, world. :)

justoneopinion 5 years, 2 months ago

I've always loved the strippers.... I need to pay you a visit sometime Anna and be the good customer! :) God Bless The Outhouse! (That will get a rise out of the Bible thumpers for sure)

amesn 5 years, 2 months ago

I'm a nurse in a nursing home filled with dirty old senile men..feel your pain to a slight extent! Here's the deal..my brother in law has never been to a strip joint..my husband wants to take him but the word is on the street your place of employment offers several nightly specials other than the typical lap dance and is also a great source of mind altering substances...this being said I caution sending them out there!

beatrice 5 years, 2 months ago

They treat you with disrespect because taking your clothes off is too easy a thing to do to warrant respect. In life, you get back what you put forth. What you are doing isn't the end all of what you want to do. Until then, if you are going to take the money by doing what you thought would be the easy way out, don't expect others to respect your employment decision.

Sorry Anna, I've not responded to any of your blogs before because I knew I'd be critical. I find them sad, just a reminder that a bright young woman must resort to stripping in order to make a living. Perhaps it is a generational thing on my part (it sure isn't a conservative/religious thing). Maybe it is my life experiences rather than your situation.

However, your stories remind me of the old joke of the guy offering a woman a million dollars if she would sleep with him. "Hell yes," she responded. So then he says, "How about 50 bucks?" and she replies, "What do you think I am, a whore?" To this he says, "We have already determined that. Now we are just haggling over the price."

Would you strip if the money was the same as working the counter at Taco Bell? No. Then that means you are just haggling over the price.

I completely hope I am wrong and that you really are this super strong individual who will go places someday. I'm just not convinced. Best thing you could do, in my opinion, is prove me, and people like me, wrong.

deec 5 years, 2 months ago

Seriously. Those who are offended by this blog could, you know, NOT read it.

BMI 5 years, 2 months ago

amesn, I suggest you check out some reviews. You can google outhouse lawrence ks reviews. Here is a good list, they are not in date order however. They do include a couple from when it was a punk rock venue. I recommend the in depth one by SuzanneB, and some others for your answers. http://www.yelp.com/biz/outhouse-the-lawrence. Here's another, http://www.tuscl.net/d.php?DID=1515

tubs_of_love 5 years, 2 months ago

I remember when I used to be a door guy at a bar. When I started the job, I was pretty shy and unable to throw anyone out, not because I was physically unable to handle it, but because I was mentally unable to. After I had been there a while, I eventually turned into a professional thrower outer. I had learned to be assertive. I had learned what I consider to be a new skill. It was time for me to move on to the next skill.

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@beatrice I'm very happy with my job. If you think it's 'beneath' me, you may actually be failing to see what stripping is. It's a sales job, and I love it. I could sell a lot of different products. Chalupas are less fun for me. And I am very, very happy that I get to dance and work out and party all the time. Moreover, as I said above, the whole thing has been this awesome Outward Bound experience. Clearly I'm having a ball.

And please---please--do not join those clamoring for strippers to take fast food jobs because they are 'better.' They're certainly less stimulating, and us smart business women who like a big pile of cash, a good time, and some mental stimulation (yep) are much happier where we are.

Don't save fish from drowning.

@The_Original_Bob I realize you're not trying to bully me in this instance, but you are not an authority on the Outhouse, so don't pretend to be one. I don't care "what you've heard" and "this one time three years ago." You just don't know. Why don't you go there for once? Bring a witness or three, and call a bouncer over when you succeed in bullying someone into prostitution, like you seem to think is so easily done.

Don't be so lazy.

@amesn I would love to help your guy have a great time! You should come, too. :)

But please tell your brother-in-law that soliciting things that are outside the job description of an exotic dancer is a huge faux pas.

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@justoneopinion We would love to have you. :) I'm going to put a calendar up on my Web site so people know when I'm working.

citizenx 5 years, 2 months ago

Enjoy the exercise, the desire of men you would never desire back, and the $800 a night.

Don't expect respect.

TopJayhawk 5 years, 2 months ago

Agreeing with Beatrice is a scary thing for me, but I do. Anna. If you had any self-respect you would get respect. You can't if you take your clothes off for a living. Bea was right about the "old joke" Actually I think it was a conversation by Winston Churchill at some formal event during WWll. You really are a "visual whore." People pay you money to take off your clothes so they can look and have fantasies about having sex with you.

Katara 5 years, 2 months ago

Krav Maga, eh?

Looks LJW has discovered its newest Marion.

No wonder they disappeareded him. He didn't shake his moneymaker for them like Anna does and I doubt he could have competed when it came to the breasteses.

Anna's next ITG story should be more interesting. I wonder if it will cover hand to hand combat...

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@TopJayhawk Why can't I expect respect if I take my clothes off for a living?

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@TopJayhawk Didn't we just celebrate MLK Day and remind ourselves that we're all people in this world?

How am I lesser person than you are because I take off my clothes and like it?

Where on earth were you educated?

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@Katara "Looks LJW has discovered its newest Marion."

Katara, you have no idea how fantastic you are.

Vic 5 years, 2 months ago

I find it funny how people are so willing to jump on the line "stripping is a terrible job. Go work fast food, a more respectable job." If you want to say "she's just haggling over the price," I'd say she did a good job at getting the better one. We are all "whores" if you want to think of it that way. We all get paid to do something for someone else. Some of us answer phones or flip burgers. Some build houses and design buildings. Others take their clothes off. Anna just negotiated a better price than you by "taking the easy way out" and you are just jealous that she was able to do so and you are stuck at your work-a-day-9-to-5 not happy with what you are doing. I am one of those who, like Anna, is happy with what they have chosen to do with their life. Plus, if you think stripping is the final stop for her, you either haven't been reading her blogs or you have no faith she, or an one for that matter, can succeed in their dreams.

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@Vic It really is amazing that people object to my happiness and my money.

citizenx 5 years, 2 months ago

I think you might have meant me when I suggested that you not expect respect.

Here's the thing. Above all, you are being paid to NOT be respected. You're not a wife or girlfriend to your customers. You're there for entertainment. You're being paid to be a fantasy...a hands-on one. As such, not everyone wants to talk to you. Others want to see what they can get by saying, or how rudely they can touch you. For them, its a powertrip for indulging their creepy psychosexual problems.

Its also an addictive "profession" and by now you know that, and you also think you are having fun. You may notice that in a month or so none of the nasty parts of the job bother you as much. I'm telling you, it would be good to get out. But I'm sure you are honeymooning with the liberating side of it & you think I'm stupid.

And for Chrissakes...you embark on this illustrious career at the Outhouse? I guess we all now know you can swim with the worst of them. Someday you may not be as proud of that as you are now.

Vic 5 years, 2 months ago

@citizenx

Every job has it's hazards. Some are tougher to deal with than others. Anna has to deal with the overly hands-y, drunken slobs who want more than she's offering. The typical fry cook has to avoid getting burnt by the cooking oil. Worst I have to deal with on a semi-regular basis is some goober having spyware taking over his computer because he accessed porn on his work machine.

I'm not saying my job has more difficult than Anna's or even yours, but it's how we handle this adversity that makes us who we are.

citizenx 5 years, 2 months ago

@Vic And what I'm cautioning Anna is that this job not make her who she will be in 5 years. That's all. It's not even a job. Anna even admitted that one of the best parts about it is showing up when she needs money or feels up to it--no schedule.

@ Anna And what other job requires you to pay your employer? What a crock. I admit, it sounds like a win-win in a lot of ways. I'm just grasping here, for things that might bother you about the underlying social problem with stripping--clues that it's not as liberating as you think.

Anna, if you will answer, I am very curious about your deepest feeling on this...not your visceral reaction...I don't know if you are married or single or what...but would you really want your serious boyfriend or future husband or husband (whatever) to think it's great what you do? Would you want to be married, and keep doing this job (assuming you're open to marrying anyone at all...big assumption I guess)? I'm just curious to how you think a truly intimate relationship and this job ideally mesh. No disrespect intended.

Boston_Corbett 5 years, 2 months ago

fraublucher went out there one time and got disappeardeded. Just sayin'.

BorderRuffian 5 years, 2 months ago

Anna wrote, "It's not that I enjoy being abused, but I would definitely say I get a huge rush out of handling it so well."

My sense is that, despite how some of the posters here feel about her profession, Anna does indeed find quite a sense of satisfaction, self-worth, and enjoyment being a stripper. My guess is that much of what she does gives her a huge rush. Whatever the pious or impious motives of her clients, the fact is - they have gathered there because they desire her, or at least, desire what she represents. And to be desired is itself a huge rush. The same applies to the politicians who get up in front of huge crowds and prance around, dance around issues, and engage in compelling rhetoric that draws people to themselves. (Hmmm, does that statement tend to lift politicians up to the same level as strippers?) What Anna does in a less public forum is not so different.

Perhaps a little different, though - Anna is more in control of her clients and, perhaps, more honest about what she is doing than some of the politicians. And being in control and enjoying one's self is something most working persons seldom get to admit. And that should give one a bit of a rush.

I certainly do not see things the same ways as CitizenX who wrote, "Above all, you are being paid to NOT be respected." Perhaps it depends on what CitizenX deems to be worthy of respect. Cannot one be respected for their own person, for being a person of worth? IS there a difference between being respected and being desired? Should the two automatically be self-exclusive?

As far as respect goes, it should also be noted that respect is a two-way street. If the persons who come to be "entertained" can be said to have no respect for the strippers, what can be said of their own self-respect? Kinda asks the old adage, "I'd NEVER go out with a girl who'd go out with the likes of me,"

monkey_c 5 years, 2 months ago

"Why can't I expect respect if I take my clothes off for a living?" With all due respect, the answer is very simple. It is not a respectable line of work. It is a job which, if you have young children, they would be embarassed about what Mommy does for a living. i.e. not respectable. Citizenx the answer to your question - "And what other job requires you to pay your employer?" -- prostitutes

BMI 5 years, 2 months ago

Some hairdressers and barbers rent their booths, etc.

beatrice 5 years, 2 months ago

Did Anna really just bring up MLK in support of her profession? OMG! Reminds me of the boy-whore now working in Nevada who compared himself to Rosa Parks in a nationally televised interview. Funny.

Again, Anna, glad you are enjoying yourself. I did not suggest that you take a fast food job instead of your current line of work. I said you wouldn't be stripping if it paid the same as a fast foot job. Am I wrong? Are you really in your current line of work just because you are an exhibitionist, or is it about the money?

Either way, taking your clothes off isn't hard work. We all do it every day. As you point out, the hard part is the trying to pretend you are someone you are not by needing to act like you are interested in men simply because they have money to stuff into your g-string. That is the hard part of your job, the sales part, as you point out.

How long do you plan on doing this? What exactly will you be putting on that resume in ten or so years, once you have passed your prime and on any given night you really are earning as much as someone working at Taco Bell? If you don't plan on doing this "forever," why not?

The money might be there for now, but respect doesn't come with it. Respect isn't something you are just given, respect is something you earn. You won't earn most people's respect simply by being a stripper, even if you are really, really good at selling yourself while doing it.

Curious, ever lie to someone when asked what you do for a living? If so, why?

monkey_c 5 years, 2 months ago

WOW. I normally do not nit-pick on spelling and typos because I am not a good speller myself. But this I couldn't let pass. Beatrice - to a guy with a foot fetish I bet a "fast foot job" actually pays better than stripping! Hee, hee thank you for the unexpected chuckle of the day.

Vic 5 years, 2 months ago

@beatrice

Would you do what you do for a living if it paid the same as fast food, ie minimum wage? I know I wouldn't do what I am doing. Would a doctor be a doctor if he was only paid minimum wage? I would say most wouldn't. There might be a dedicated few who truly want be doctors despite the pay. One thing I know for sure, there would be fewer doctors in this world if this was the case. The reason we get these jobs is for the money. Sometimes, we really like what we do regardless of the money. You obviously haven't been following Anna's blogs or some of your questions you asked would have already been answered.

To catch you up... Anna worked for a non-profit organization as a day job for a while. She did what she enjoyed for no pay. To pay the bills, she took up stripping. Ultimately, she left her day job to solely dance for a living. I believe she intends to continue her education and get into law. As for lying about what she does, she has told her parents she waits tables. That's as far as I know.

beatrice 5 years, 2 months ago

Vic, very good point on the money issue. Fair enough.

No, I haven't followed the blogs, though I've seen some of them. I just felt like speaking up this time about the issue of respect. I'll stick to the argument that respect isn't something given, it is something earned. I believe what Anna is seeking is something closer to being polite. People shouldn't be rude to others just because of their chosen line of work (as long as it is legal), but we also shouldn't equate being courteous with respect.

monkey-c: um, no comment.

Vic 5 years, 2 months ago

beatrice, I hope I wasn't too angry with my tone. If I came off as angry, my apologies.

As for the matter of respect. It is all one's perception. There are plenty who think less of Anna for what she does for a living. Their perception is what society has told them about strippers. Anna is atypical. Stereotypes are there because most actually do fit into them. It is this same perception and these same stereotypes that bring out the worst in her clientele. However, from what I gather, I think Anna enjoys the challenge and is empowered by the control she actually has. Yeah, maybe there is a drunken slob that she can't control. That's what the bouncers are for.

But maybe you are right. She may not be respected by the general masses. Society has told us that because she does what she does for a living, she is not to be respected and what she does is not respectable. If we all can actually see an individual for who they are rather than judge them by our perceptions of what they do or the color of their skin (there's your MLK reference), we can live in a better world.

beatrice, I won't ask you to respect Anna. Respect must be earned. I just ask you to not judge so harshly so quickly.

KansasPerson 5 years, 2 months ago

It's an interesting question that's come up, that of respect. I believe we are dealing with two slightly different things here: a) Respect shown (or not) to Anna by her customers; and b) respect felt (or not) toward Anna by the readers of her blog and/or people in general.

Anna's customers must keep their treatment of her within certain boundaries or they get bounced from the ELB. From reading her blog, I surmise that some just barely stay within those boundaries, while others are even more polite than is required by the rules. Everyone is pretty much acting in accordance with agreed-upon rules that are specific to that environment

Of course, this may or may not equate with "real-world" respect. Anna is in sales. She has to be endearing to people that, if she were to meet them on her off-hours, she may not want to even talk to. Likewise, a customer might respect her personal space (or the rules of the club) without actually feeling respectful towards strippers.

Which leads to the second point -- the respect toward strippers by blog-readers and the world in general -- and that appears to vary by person. But that's true for a lot of jobs. I know some people who lie to their parents because they're stuck in a job they hate at a call center or something else that they're afraid won't be perceived as "worthy of respect."

I have more thoughts on this, but I keep getting interrupted, so I'll just go ahead and post for now.....

beatrice 5 years, 2 months ago

Thanks Vic. Not trying to judge, just respond. I don't respect Anna less for what she does (I don't know her), but I sure don't respect her more based on her career choice, either. I still feel it is sad that a bright young woman finds it necessary to strip off her clothing in front of groping, creepy guys in order to earn some money.

As far as being "empowered by the control she actually has," I must take issue. Exactly what "control" does she actually have? That is Camille Paglia, postmodern feminist babble if you ask me. I don't think of it as control as much as practicing survival skills out of necessity.

Comparing what one does for a living to ones skin color is also a difficult leap for me. One chooses a job, they don't choose their skin color (unless you are Sammy Sosa, of course). Further, if we don't judge people by their actions, the things they choose to do, then what do we make our judgments on? Are you really saying you wouldn't judge a guy who makes porn movies any differently than you would the guy who runs the local grocery store? Really? If not, then perhaps you are just a better person than I.

I'm sorry, but it is a fact of life that we all get judged for the decisions we make and actions we take. Just ask yourself, would you be fine with it if your daughter / niece / wife / girlfriend chose to be a stripper?

That gets to the point I am making here. I'm glad that Anna is happy with her career choice (remember, I didn't start this, just responding to it), but selling this myth that all is fine in stripper land goes against stories I have heard from other women who have taken their turn around the pole. Why, if I can keep one girl from following Anna's example, then ... (okay, I'm kidding on this part. Not trying to be that preachy, just not agreeing with the whole empowerment through stripping for cash bit.) Peace, bea

tubs_of_love 5 years, 2 months ago

@BorderRuffian - Did you just compare stripping to politics? I believe there is a process and also requirements to become a politician. I don't actually know how to become a politician, but I'm pretty sure you can't just waltz right in and say "I wanna be a politician." I'll ask this because I don't know: What are the requirements to becoming a stripper? Maybe Anna should answer that.

@Anna - I'm glad you're happy and I'm glad you don't work in fast food. But if I may, how old are you?

KansasPerson 5 years, 2 months ago

Someday I want to grab a friend and actually perform a waltz as we enter through the door of some building, and then have someone say, "Who do you think you are? You can't just waltz in here and....."

I don't know why, but that would make my day.

I was walking down Mass Street last week carrying a large clock that had just been repaired at Strong's Antiques, and I was DYING for someone to stop me and say, "Do you happen to have the time?"

I guess I never really grew up. :)

citizenx 5 years, 2 months ago

I, again, caution Anna to not imagine that she is the exception, that she is the bright young thing with a great future among all of the whores, single mothers, drug addicts, drunks, drama queens, lazy, substandardly literate community college students, battered girlfriends, etc. You're not kidding about stripping being great for your self-esteem. I mean, look at those lunatics around you. You're nothing like them!

Anna, you know what I'm talking about. No one in that business is really "ok". Except you, right? Yeah, I know.

You can't surround yourself with those people and not be like them. I'm sure you already have some friends who dance.

There are no exceptions in that business.

tvc 5 years, 2 months ago

If every job paid the same salary, would you still be a stripper?

I had a negative view of stripping before reading your blog, but it is lower now. It would be nice if it could be empowering, but it isn’t. The more you protest the sadder it all seems. Men abuse you physically and emotionally. You are not strong because you endure abuse; you will be strong when you say no more! I hope you understand I am saying this out of concern and not to hurt you.

redmorgan 5 years, 2 months ago

I'm glad to see you're back, Anna. I missed your posts :( You've inspired me to start bloggin about my job! It's fun and cheaper than therapy. You are a natural born entertainer, both on the stage AND on the keyboard lol!

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@beatrice There's nothing I can do for you if you don't read the blog you're "responding" to. You get an F.

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@redmorgan Thanks, sweetheart. :) Yes, blog blog blog. Everyone's perspective needs to get out there.

@beatrice You must understand that MLK's message is not--not--exclusively about skin color. It encompasses understanding and respecting other perspectives. And this is a major reason social media like blogs, commenting, Twitter, etc. is so important. Because I'm out here to show you my story.

@citizenx All I can do is show you my story. If you can't fathom it, there's nothing else I can do for you. Happy trails.

Katara 5 years, 2 months ago

AnnaUndercover (Anonymous) says… @redmorgan Thanks, sweetheart. :) Yes, blog blog blog. Everyone's perspective needs to get out there. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Unless you don't agree with Anna's opinions or express approval for her career decision. YMMV.

tubs_of_love 5 years, 2 months ago

In my opinion, this is nothing more than needing attention, the stripping and the blogging. I don't buy the "getting my story out there." I liked it a lot better when no one was reading you're blogs. "What's it like when things get tough for you?" Diva bs.

parrothead8 5 years, 2 months ago

When you say that you've discovered a more lucrative alternative, I would submit that you must consider how you're defining the term "lucrative." Not everyone considers money as the sole definition of lucrative.

And you know I'm not one to question what you do for a living. I think there's nothing finer than nakedness, especially when it's a woman who's doing the gettin' naked.

citizenx 5 years, 2 months ago

@ Anna.

What egotistical, narcissistic tripe. I can't fathom your story? I'm sitting here laughing. I'm sure I've talked to more dancers than you have. Everyone thinks they're the exception. I've met one who was truly an exception--in the 90's, she was able to rake down over $400 a night without ever giving one lap dance.

Good luck with your "outsider" perspective. No, really. The next time some jerk grabs for your crotch when you're grinding on the lump in his pants, doggy style, ask yourself then how much of an outsider to the whole thing you are. And take pause, please, and ask yourself if what you do is good for your self esteem. Ok? But only after you take his money. :)

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@tubs_of_love Sure, it takes a certain amount of egoism to participate so heavily in social media, but it sounds like you don't know the story of how this blog came into being. It was born not only how euphoric I feel when I'm just driving to work, but also because I posted something on CL asking people to come buy dances. I had just spent weeks on my back with a severe respiratory problem and owed Lawrence Memorial Hospital a lot of money. I knew some people wouldn't respond nicely, but I was surprised at their ignorance re: stripping. That was the original motivation.

@parrothead8 That's true. :)

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@tubs_of_love I am going to tell my girlfriends that someone called me a diva. I'm very excited. :)

@citizenx It definitely sounds like you can't believe it. I guess we all have our own Outward Bound experiences. :) I regret that I didn't communicate it better to you in this piece. Happy trails.

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@The_Original_Bob I've been thinking about your comments. The drugs aren't there in the abundance you suggest, and neither is the prostitution. However, there are sometimes problems with both of those issues, and I do think it's important to share with you guys.

The reason you haven't heard anything about it at all (so far) is that it just hasn't been a major feature of my experience. No matter what you think, it's just not the huge tyranny over our lives the way you seem to imagine.

I will find a way to post more about it within the rules at LJWorld.com, if I can. I know you find this hard to believe, but sometimes the truth seems pretty strange. And boring.

Let me talk to Jon Kealing about what I can post about, and I'll try to get something up on Friday. (Starting tonight, I have to work til 4am, so it will be hard. I will do my best).

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@The_Original_Bob

:( If it does work out, and I can post about stuff (because if I'm unable to post truthfully, um, I'd rather not post at all--JK was not entirely pleased with my post re: the one weekend my "good" customers were abusing me intentionally), you better like it because I wanted to post a couple things I've been asked to post about by other people.

beatrice 5 years, 2 months ago

Anna, I read "this" blog, just not all of your past blogs. Try again.

Also, if you wish to imagine racism and the lack of respect you experience for your choice to dance naked for money as being equal, then go for it. However, they aren't.

MLK's dream for equality was not about life choices. It was about allowing opportunities for people to reach their true potential, of there not being barriers to achivements that are based on things like race or gender, and of the opportunities to make life choices being equal for all. It simply wasn't that all opportunities and life choices are equal, nor that all life choices deserve equal respect. That is just silly talk.

KansasPerson 5 years, 2 months ago

I'm interested in finding out what the heck the J-W's philosophy behind all this is. I happened to be talking to a J-W person shortly after Anna's first blog entry, and I asked if there had been any public feedback (positive or negative), and we got into a bit of a talk about it. I was told that a newspaper equivalent of this blog would "never" appear in the "family" newspaper, but that anyone, anywhere in the world, can have a blog on this site, so that's different. What I took away from that conversation was that the website and the newspaper are two completely different things. But now, it sounds like the editors are often keeping their eye on the blogs, or on this blog at least, and telling Anna what she can and can't write. So which is it? Is the website separate, or isn't it?

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@beatrice I have one blog. This is one entry in that blog.

If you can't celebrate someone else's somebodiness and/or take part in the conversation in this corner of the social media that's out there, this might not be the blog for you.

You did seem to try in the above comments with other users though, and I appreciate that.

@KansasPerson Thank you for sharing that story. I'm about to call Jon about the prostitution and 'drugs.'

Am on my way to interview a dancer to write some stuff for black history month. :)

beatrice 5 years, 2 months ago

Anna, I'm supposed to read everything you've ever written to be able to respond? Um, no.

If you only want people to respond who wish to celebrate your career choice, then perhaps you shouldn't write blog "entries" for the world to see that tell of how wonderfully happy you are to be able to work the pole for a living. Send private messages instead. If you are posting things publicly on LJWorld, I'll respond when and if I choose. Sometimes my responses will be critical. If you don't like my responses regarding your life choices, you are free to ignore them. However, if you want me to "celebrate" those choices -- well, it ain't gonna happen.

citizenx 5 years, 2 months ago

@Anna...I am curious about how you think that experiencing problems with prostitution and hard drugs at your place of business, in the 10 months of your employ, at all, even one time, somehow does not qualify as "abundance" when it comes to those things, which generally you don't find in regular (highly educated, churchgoing, middle-class) society. Ok, it's there..but not like in strip clubs. I think your comment does show how very deadened your sensibilities are when it comes to your new toleration of the class of people you're now surrounded by for 40 hours a week (thereabouts).

However rare drugs and prostitution are (or are not), it sounds like, in the environment of the strip club, you just shrug your shoulders, laugh it off, and hope she doesn't get hired back the next week. Am I right?

5 years, 2 months ago

tubs says---- I liked it a lot better when no one was reading you're blogs. “What's it like when things get tough for you?”

When was it that people weren't reading Anna's blogs? Look back at all of the comments and obviously MANY are reading.

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@citizenx You'll find out if they let me post about it tomorrow.

I'm working on a site of my own, but it's not ready yet.

tubs_of_love 5 years, 2 months ago

@jajacut - Actually, for awhile there, AnnaUndercover's entry's were not getting any attention, I know this because LJ world is the first thing I see when getting on the internet. This one got lucky, probably with the title "Downside of stripping." But most of them get bumped off the main list a lot sooner.

Oh and why did you quote me quoting Anna? Probably could of done with out that.

@AnnaUndercover - Don't get ahead of yourself, I did say diva b.s.

parrothead8 5 years, 2 months ago

@citizenx

Wow. Just wow. How very presumptuous of you to define what "regular" society consists of: highly educated, churchgoing, middle-class

I'm sorry, but you're living in a dreamworld.

BigPrune 5 years, 2 months ago

Cry me a river....you get paid VERY well doing what you do, don't forget. It's all about the money, isn't it always with women? I know I paid for some blondie gal's Nebraska Furniture Mart living room group one night in there :)

I've never seen someone get out of line with the exception of a group of Mexicans with their senioritas in tow, but they were stealing my beer and taking our table while I used the roomy restroom with a trash bag over the other toilet and my buddies were somewhere else. Me not speak Engrish. Though it is an extremely rare occurence that I've gone there -bachelor party, divorce party or what not.

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

@BigPrune Who's crying? I love Upward Bound. :)

Ugh guys get out of line all the time. It's the girls who handle it, not the bouncers, unless they really cross the line. Fighting isn't the problem.

AnnaUndercover 5 years, 2 months ago

I'm beginning to wonder if people read this post all the way through.

I blame the people who sound like they stopped reading after the list of bad things that go down.

I also blame me. I obviously need to do a better job to make you want to keep reading.

Both parties are hereby sentenced to three minutes reflecting on what they've done.

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