It’s been months since an update, which makes it seem like I’ve quit dancing, moved in with the boy, and settled down. And I have.
I sit in my art studio most days, chatting with the painter who shares the space with me. I sew futon covers for office lounges and sensible skirts for private clients. I don’t see my beautiful ex-coworker any more, don’t wake up with hangovers and wads of cash stuffed into bags full of bras and platform stilletos. And I miss it.
But we’re happy, traveling, and planing on having a family. I miss not knowing what might happen tomorrow night, but I don’t miss the dread that it might be soul crushing. I brought a pole to Burning Man this year, and I’m planning on performing professionally as a dancer, not just a human titty operator.
There might still be updates here. I hope there are things salacious and exciting enough to share. Mostly, though, there will be private life; vegetable gardens and business licenses. Etsy shop management and homemade almond milk. I’d share it with you if I could, but my guess is that it would fall pretty flat on the page.
I’d like to start modeling again, now that I’ve left every proper agency I’ve ever worked with behind and let myself have that pink Mohawk I’ve always wanted. I’m working on getting back into ballet and shooting fetish and contortion work. Maybe when I figure out how to make this smart phone work for me I’ll be able to turn WordPress into my photo album. The id always needs an outlet.
There are a ton (about a short ton, not quite metric) of things I’ve been meaning to, wanting to, almost needing to write about. Fortunately, or unfortunately, or just plain cosmically, there’s been a lot going on between finishing the collection, running workshops, being back at work, nursing a new relationship, giving other ones hospice care, and keeping my cat from shitting on the rug in defiance of my absence.
Yesterday my friend Stephen said some really resonant things about sex work in his Daily Rumpus
email, so today I’m sharing it in lieu of a full-on post. It starts out of a description of the Q&A at the debut of Cherry
, the movie he just directed with James Franco (who I almost got to give a lap dance to!) and Heather Graham (who I met over dinner at my favorite restaurant one night before shooting began!). Cherry
debuted at the Berlin Film Festival, and will hopefully debut in the U.S. soon so I can be vain and go see it. I’m the stripper who plays a stripper in the strip club scene. (Breaking down stereotypes like the elastic seaming up an old pair of Body Zone booty shorts that you accidentally put in the dryer.) Continue reading
Uneventful work week. Finally made some money last night, so the house tacked on an extra $50 for no other reason than to take an extra 10%, which is really an extra 12% after the 15% they skim off the top for converting “club dollars” into cash. Suddenly, $500 becomes $375 before the 20% they take out of dances. Luckily most of that $500 was a tip, so I was still able to tip the DJ, Housemom, and my favorite floor host, although not as much as I had originally intended to. I’m thankful for the opportunity and ability to do what I do, but, still: what a racket!
I scheduled off next week to focus on the 8-12 looks that R___ and I need to finish for the fashion show. On top of all that, I have costumes to make for my camp’s V-Day gogo dancers, workshops to host at the shop, furniture to get rid of, a garden to tend to, and a motorcycle battery connector being held together by a key ring and a binder clip. I cut myself some slack Tuesday night after a long day sewing and a longer night at work and spent a lazy Wednesday morning in bed with J____ and her partner. We grabbed brunch at the diner and then I squirreled myself away in the shop for a couple of hours to work on a corset for the show. My original plan for tomorrow was a lazy Friday at The Baths with my roommate followed by the first proper mani/pedi in months before dinner and zombie flicks with Frenchie, but it looks like I’ll be hand-stitching Victorian lace and satin covered buttons to a capelet, scrambling for the right lengths of 1/4″ flat steel boning, and then running to the store for spaghetti makings.
Oddly enough, I couldn’t be happier.
Last night my favorite customer sent me a text: “How serious are you guys about starting a business?” I had seen him a couple weeks ago and introduced him to R___. It was the first time he’d danced with anyone else with me, and they got along swimmingly. We talked a lot about the business we’re starting, but I was still surprised and honored to hear last night’s business proposal out of the blue.
Having invested in another creative business in the past, which he is now seeing returns on, he wants to reinvest in another artistic endeavor. Unlike the Kickstarter route that we were going to (and probably still will) employ, this would be a proper business agreement, contracted and all. We’ve recently costed our products and now need to find a sellthrough rate and the distribution avenues that work best for us. What really pleases me is that there are strip club patrons who are able to see us as human beings, neither pigeon-holed sex workers or princesses to dote on (although I’m not opposed to the latter, it has no place in entrepreneurship). Likewise, I intend to see the people I meet at work as human beings of limitless potential, whether they become fond friends and business partners or are simply that guy who comes in for prime rib every week and tells me about his morning commute.
Yeah, we made that.
Sometimes I wonder what would have happened if I had studied creative writing instead of fashion. Elliott tells me that the key to writing is practice, and I haven’t written here in weeks. My last paid piece as Other Me has been finished since New Year’s Day and will be published (online) soon, which leaves me officially not-writing until I get my next approved pitch sorted out.
Thursdays I’m exhausted. Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays I try to sew at the shop from noon-ish until I have to high tail it to work. I stop at home to feed myself and my (new) cat. I’m usually at least mildly hungover the next morning, but I do it all over again anyway because sitting in the shop’s sunny window is so uplifting, because the dream of R___ and I having a line and small shop of our own someday is so motivating, and not as farfetched as I used to think. Continue reading
Sooo… I never got around to writing about the rest of the shibari party J____ and I went to. Or anything about work over the past few weeks. Even following the decision to wait a year to apply to grad school, there’s still been a lot to keep me busy between working three nights a week, filling design orders, starting a corsetry business, writing paid pieces, and divining the mysteries of my mid-twenties. I know — melodramatic whining, all of it. What I have been contemplating very seriously these days, though, is the nature of relationships, the spectrums of intimacy that they lie on, and the paradigms we tend to operate them within in an attempt to keep them coexisting peacefully.
In a sense, I’m not talking about the single partner/small group of close friends/larger group of acquaintances standard that most people’s social circles ascribe to, but in another sense that’s exactly what I’m talking about. Why is that the generally accepted structure of our relationships? How is that fulfilling enough to the majority of people for it to have become the norm?!
I’ve pondered this as I’ve examined my own relationships and the Venn diagram they superimpose on my life. I’m immeasurably happy within this moment, but concerned as ever for the sustainability of it. “We don’t ever have to break up!” J____ giggled as the three of us lay in bed the other morning. “I mean,” she explained, “This is good. It can keep working forever.” I hope she’s right, but it’s hard for my mind to be at peace with the possibility when so much of our culture says otherwise. Even if it is possible, it’s a delicate dance dependent on the right partners for true coexistence; But if it is possible, it’s worth all the fancy footwork in the world. Continue reading
Posted in dating, Photos, work
Tagged corsets, dating, exes, expectations, friends, love, older men, open relationships, platonic relationships, relationships, sewing, sustainability