The Annual Sausage-Fest

Last night, a friend and a few of the girls from work and I headed to a strip club for the annual sausage-fest. One night a year, this club shuts down, kicks the female strippers out, and brings out the male strippers. Pudgy Midwestern housewives and eighteen-year-old sassy cumbuckets pour into this place, begging to see thong-draped dicks and the men with their beefy bodies. So much so, that after the release of Magic Mike this past year, the very large multi-level club had to start taking advance reservations just to get in the door.

My group had such reservation, and on stripper-time we were early. By early, I mean, a half-hour late. Parking was spilling out into the road, and with my bum foot and my friend’s heels, we walked to the door. Approaching the door, several people told us to turn around and go home: they were only letting reservations in. Ahead, we heard chants of “LET US IN, LET US IN,” from over two hundred angry, horny, disrespectful women. I’d seen male strippers before, and I knew women were generally poorly behaved in strip clubs…but this?

We made it through the crowd of hornballs, and were escorted to the cashier. Twelve bucks to get in, and we were told there was no available seating remaining. Excellent. The first dancer started, a completely decked-out Fireman, and coworker AI* and I knew what we were in for. We’d seen this guy before. He tried to jackhammer AI* to death at the last male revue.

I guess male strippers are in short supply in the Midwest.

Around us, women were creating a cacophony of  chanting, screaming, squealing, shouting, cheering, yelling, clapping — insanity. I believe the first words out of my mouth after my wristband was slapped on and I turned around were wide-eyed, “Men would never be allowed to act like this. Never.” It was something I found myself repeating over and over throughout the night, in utter disbelief of the things I was seeing. So much so, that my friend must have been quite annoyed with those words in just a few hours.

The building was at total capacity, maybe a few more. I’d worked in this club before, a few years back, and had never seen it that busy on its best nights. Women were stacked two in chairs, women were piled in around railings, women were leaning over the stage, women were pressed against walls three deep. Women sitting on trash cans and blocking exits, women everywhere.

As the show went on, I watched in horror as camera phones lit up like strobes. I made mention of it to one girl, who told me that the manager had told her she could take pictures. I told her she should really have the performers’ permissions before taking any photos, and she gave me hell, as though I was asking her to crawl on broken glass. I held my ground, and she finally asked. He granted her permission, but his face said, “I can’t stop any of this, and I’m just trying to get out of here with as much money in hand as I can.”

Her response to getting permission was to whip around and tell me that she should shove my face to his dick and take a picture. You’d be so proud; I walked away from that one. My foot wasn’t feeling so great, anyway, and there was simply nothing more that I could do.

The bitches didn’t tip him, and a few of the girls mentioned that they’d been pests to the bouncers on duty. They were climbing all over a satellite pole in a corner, and one, we laughed and laughed and pointed at. She couldn’t get her feet off the ground with her weight and lack of fitness, and settled for posing next to it with some terrible tongue-out-of-her-mouth face. You wanna be a stripper, huh?

If that wasn’t bad enough, one girl on a main stage took her paid turn on stage with a Policeman Dancer, reared back and slapped him across the face with a snap, and used the other hand to shove a dollar into his open mouth and down his throat when he opened his mouth reflexively in surprise and pain. When he exclaimed that she couldn’t slap him, she reared back, and snapped him across the face again in the other direction, harder, hard enough to turn his head on top of his bulbous 20″ neck. She was asked to get off stage, and she sat by the steps, refusing and pouting like a child.

Others grabbed and touched and peeked and pulled and licked. Some leaned over the stage or sat on top of the rail, grabbing at ankles and knees and dicks and hands and arms and faces. Some held on for dear life when the performers picked them up, grabbing anything available to clench. Some tried to steal the show. Some of the women tried the pole in their jeans and winter clothes, and I wished aloud that they’d fall and crack their skulls open. To show them that it’s not easy. To punish them for being terrible to these men. To punish them for their beliefs that led them to believe that they could treat human beings this way.

The performers were making $5-10 for each eight-song set in tips, and collecting shortened dance fees was their only savior. There was no shortage of women trying to get these dances, and the lines just grew longer and longer as the sweat poured.

The club was trashed. The seven or so regular staff bouncers were doing their best just to pick up empty bottles and watch the entrances and dressing room for trouble from the crowd. The club simply couldn’t handle the spectacle that male strippers in this town had become. It was nothing short of a stripper’s nightmare.

I ran into the male stripper, K*, that I’d met at the annual company party (that I contract my bachelor/etc parties through), and we chatted off and on, yelling over the music. He said, disappointed, that I’d never texted him back after the holiday party, and I replied that I had. He said he’d never gotten it, and I said that he’d never returned mine.

It was during my stint of a month of serial dead-end dates with the Astrophysicist, the Politician, and the Minister, and I was delighted to meet a male stripper. He works for the same company, but coed private parties aren’t in high demand, which are usually majority gender-specific. Our holiday-party conversation was a bit of learning about the challenges that the other faces, and relating on a totally different level than either of us usually enjoys with the opposite sex. There was no need to explain the ins-and-outs of the industry, or leave a disclaimer that I wasn’t a coke-addled high-mileage prostitute with four kids and a pimp. There was no need for all of the invasive initial questions, the “I-love-my-job-so-fuck-you” sermon. It was pleasant. Finally, a man who understood. We made out a little when others disappeared.

I was disappointed when he didn’t return my text. After our run-in at the club, I’ll shoot him another later today. Why not?

After a couple of hours of stripper-nightmare torture, my friend and I decide to leave. I couldn’t take it. I’d been without nicotine gum for hours, and being stuffed into a wall-to-wall crowd of shrieking asshole whales was hitting the point of sensory overload and patience fail.

I don’t think I’ll be seeing male strippers again. It wasn’t the men. It was that women are simply unprepared entirely for male strippers, cast into that world once a year, and expected to act appropriately. They think rules are bullshit and only apply to savage men-beasts, and they don’t think that the performers deserve respect and the chance to consent — they simply take whatever they want. I can’t be a part of that; I don’t want to be there.

What the fuck is wrong with people?

I think tonight is the first time it’s made sense to me when men apologize for their entire gender when they hear that a women has been assaulted or mistreated. I’m completely ashamed of being a chick in that crowd at all.

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~ by The Stiletto-Shod One on February 4, 2013.

3 Responses to “The Annual Sausage-Fest”

  1. Wow.

    Seriously.

    That sounds terrifying, and I am literally speechless.

  2. […] A version of this piece originally appeared on https://whatsyourrealname.wordpress.com/ […]

  3. I enjoy reading it. Good reflection and soul searching touched me.

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