Like, I’m In A Band: Ray’s Guide To Dating Strippers

January 2010

You did the impossible. You got her real name and you convinced her that you weren’t like other guys. Now you’re going through a stack of Cosmopolitan magazines and Depeche Mode CDs while your newly-acquired stripper girlfriend sleeps quietly under a Powerpuff Girls bed sheet littered with cigarette butts and condom wrappers. You have two options here: put your pants on, change your number and head home or prepare for the toughest relationship you’ve ever had.

There are a few simple rules that anyone must follow when attempting to make a girlfriend (yes I’m writing this for heterosexual men and lesbian women—I, unfortunately, have very limited experience with male strippers and I’m not discussing that incident at the Viewpoint) out of a stripper. I used to think they were as simple as Gremlins (don’t feed them after midnight, don’t get them wet and don’t expose them to bright light), but it’s more complicated:

Do Not Play Captain Save-A-Ho.

If you met her in the club, don’t try to take her out of the club. Save time by looking at yourself in the mirror and repeating, "I was just another douchebag at the rack when she met me," until you get the point. First and foremost, you must never forget that a person’s self-worth is often defined by what they do for a living. If you try to convince your stripper girlfriend that what she does for a living is disgusting, demeaning and immoral, you’re basically saying that the same applies to her decision making process, personal goals and, most importantly, self-esteem. There are plenty of disgusting jobs, many of which are deemed normal by the masses (fast food worker, janitor, makeup artist for the cast of The View) but few of these are performanceoriented, and even fewer are performed while naked and vulnerable. Thus, by attacking your stripper girlfriend’s choice of occupation, you’re not only making yourself look like a hypocrite (remember when you were buying dances from her that first night, Romeo?), you’re insulting a vocation she might actually enjoy.

Secondly, if a pet store is a metaphorical singles’ bar, one in which you can bring home a cute low-maintenance companion for the right price, strip clubs are zoos. Make friends with the tiger, feed the tiger, gain trust from the tiger and eventually sneak in after hours and sleep with the tiger, if you must. But whatever you do, don’t try to take the tiger out of its cage or it will rip you to shreds, fuck all your friends and relapse on coke before taking a shift at an even worse zoo (one with a jukebox instead of a DJ). Not every stripper is dancing because she woke up sober one day and told herself, "I’d love to show my labia to gang members in Gresham for a few bucks an hour." On the rare chance that a stripper is hugging the pole as a result of, say, a history of severe psycho-sexual abuse, it may not be the best idea to convince her to quit dancing and babysit children for a living.

Do Not Hang Around The Club

If you were a cop dating a drug dealer, do you think it would help your girlfriend’s sales if you hung around quietly in the back of the crackhouse while she tried to slang rocks? Don’t try to be the downlow boyfriend in the club unless you plan on acting like a customer and not batting an eye when your woman ignores you to go sit with the fat, smelly and rich regular that pays her 20 bucks a song to smell her feet. The only type of people that fantasize about watching a girl strip naked in front of her boyfriend hang out at swinger’s clubs, places where it’s legal to get your fuck on. Not one dude in the strip club wants to deal with the pressure of getting a lapdance in front of baby daddy, and you’ll be costing your woman money by lurking around and watching (which will, in turn, cause her to work more shifts). Instead, introduce yourself (once) to the security guard, exchange numbers and offer him a hefty tip if he keeps an eye on your woman. Unless the security guard is trying to bang your girl (which he probably is), she’ll be safer than a job application at a Phish concert.

Do Not Mention Fight Club

What your woman does for a living is much like what anyone does for a living and she probably doesn’t want to talk about it when she’s off work. How would you feel if halfway through a pro-quality blowjob your woman pulled your dick and asked you about the customers at your workplace, telling you that it makes her nervous when cute chicks come in for a Big Mac or whatnot? Chances are, if you’re dating a stripper, you’re probably unemployed and involved in a really lame band and/or shitty art. Since neither your band nor your hand can draw worth a shit, you’re probably not a full-time artist, so what you do all day isn’t considered "working." Keep in mind that your stripper girlfriend is not as eager to discuss the intricacies of hiding a tampon during a private dance as you are to boast about the ten people that showed up to the Tonic for your concert. Further, don’t introduce your stripper girlfriend to your friends as your "stripper girlfriend." The Hello Kitty tattoo and home-altered Motorhead shirt give it away.

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