Now Hiring (Jobs For Former Strip Club DJs)

Published September 2020 in Exotic

Years ago, after working as a dance commander for over a decade, I decided to hang up the mic and apply myself in other areas (and states), to see if the skills I learned in the strip club DJ booth would be applicable elsewhere. As it turns out, they kind of are—weddings share more in common with nude bars than they do any other ceremony (weird father-daughter elements, drunk chicks taking their clothes off to '80s music, strangers giving money to a hot lady before she leaves with some other dude, tons of alcohol, etc.), and night clubs are finally adopting the "bitches, money, swag, repeat" format that has been popular in our neck of the poles for years. Thus, it was quick and easy to pick up shifts outside of the "urban dance studios for marginalized, at-risk and tattooed youth" (always play up your old gig on job applications).

But, like any other almost-midlife crisis, it's important to remember one's roots and realize that you won't ever technically stop being a strip club DJ (or, a stripper, if that's applicable). You can take the club out of the DJ, but you can't get him a job interview with anyone who does background checks, so to speak. In late 2019, I made a quiet return to one of the only Portland-area clubs I would consider working at again, and was awesome. Steaks, ladies, music of any genre, great pay and cool co-workers. "What could go wrong?" I thought, as I decided to once again dedicate my life to the art of talking over music to draw attention to the closest nude co-worker.

Well, COVID-19 happened. Even as the last night of work approached, after Kate Brown gave her final back-and-forths regarding new rules to the newspapers (seriously, it was like the chorus of "Gravel Pit," trying to figure out early stage lockdown guidelines), I was handing out rolls of toilet paper to any customer who got a private dance and our dancers were doing "sanitizer shows" that were oddly sexy (and now I have another weird fetish, so thanks for that). But, alas, as the 'Rona caught up to Oregon, our childless leaders decided to ground everyone out of spite and the clubs closed.

Flash forward a few months later and I'm here with some good news (at least for other out-of-work DJs). It is really, really easy to start a business right now—there are more free handouts being given away by the government right now than the dumpsters behind the prosthetic limb factory. And, if you default on a loan or just invest in a bad idea ( for your custom with NO MINIMUM ORDER), your future lenders and/or employers will see that it happened during the height of the 2020 election cyc...excuse me, "pandemic," which is a better excuse than, "Oh, I defaulted that summer because I spent most of my time smoking pot." Even better, you can still spend most of your summer smoking pot!

But, not everyone wants to go into the plague fashion industry, so here are some suggestions that I have for you, the out-of-work strip club DJ:

Dutch Bros Coffee Barista

Can you say things at fifteen-words-per-second? Are you comfortable being less than an inch from barely legal and even-less-clothed women, without popping a chubby? Can you sell a stranger on extra whipped cream shots? Well, congratulations—you are beyond qualified to work for Macklemore's coffee company (I'm not joking—he recently bought the chain). In order to apply, you just have to be "white in style," meaning that you can have dark skin, but you must resemble a stock photo from a PacSun advertisement, with the attitude of a first-time homebuyer, whose wife thinks missionary position and Miracle Whip are both spicy. Of course, this only applies to dudes—if you're a female, you literally just have to be able to fit into the cart (so, like a size seven or eight, tops). But, if you're an out-of-work female strip club DJ, you're probably not using your niche or leveraging identity politics in the first place (seriously, there are maybe four or five female strip club DJs in the world and they're all really, really good at what they do...maybe I should stop typing, before I cost every other male DJ in town their shifts, too).

Not only is "the best little coffeehouse from Grants Pass" a constant source of loud rap and/or techno music and verbal commands, but in addition to resembling all the fun of a strip club, Dutch baristas make a gang of tips. And, this has actually increased since the lockdown. Although Dutch Bros has been a well-established source of cash gratuity for years, their new "digital only because COVID or something" credit and debit card policy means that, now, baristas directly ask customers whether or not they want to tip. Do you have any idea how fucked up it is to tell a teenage girl "no," when she asks for a measly dollar? In fact, one of them asked me, "Tip it or forget it?" and it took me a sec to realize she was talking about gratuity. Dutch Bros is basically a strip club without the pole. A former strip club DJ would fit in without missing a beat.

Drug & Alcohol Counselor

For some dumb reason, regular drug and alcohol counselors require a ton of schooling, training and...get this...they fucking drug test for the job. Look, I get it—you might not want your counselors smoking crack in the parking lot before work (they're not schoolteachers, after all), but the "takes one to know one" mentality works wonders in certain areas—rehab being one of them. And, don't try to sell me on that "I used to be hooked on blah blah blah, back in the '80s" talk—the only thing worse than a junkie is a former junkie. We get it—you found God after Tammy took the kids. But, does that make you a good counselor? Probably not—otherwise, you'd still have the kids.

What does make a good rehab roster, is one full of people who are surrounded by people on drugs...but don't really do anything other than alcohol, weed and caffeine. This is where strip club DJs come in—I can tell what drug a dancer is on by talking to her for a few seconds, and sometimes, even looking at her playlist. Downtempo techno, Radiohead and Slayer? Cocaine. 2000s hip hop, country, nu metal and Hot Topic goth rock? Meth. Current pop music and two random songs by Tech N9ne? Molly. It's that simple—strip club DJs have an observational skill set that real drug and alcohol counselors can only dream of having—even after spending half a decade studying "signs of drug use." Please. As if "jittery speech and dilated pupils" has anything on "Slipknot shirt and chewed-up nails," when it comes to profiling.

But, what about the whole "help people recover" thing? Well, we may not be good at that. But, we are great at keeping people safe and spotting potential relapse situations, by applying our profiling skills to not just dancers, but the company kept by dancers, as well. For instance, if an "I'm pretending to be her driver" boyfriend sits politely with the bouncer while his stripper girlfriend cashes in her ones the end of a shift, he's probably not a bad influence. However, if the guy shows up late, fumbles with his wallet around the bouncer, acts nervous around the DJ, knows the cocktail waitress for some reason, hands her a wadded-up baggie and then says "These are Crystal's keys...tell her I'll be at Roger's place after work," well, that's a drug deal, kids.

Point is, you can either hire some Zoomer straight outta Rip Me Off University to use "social work tactics" and "group treatment" to assist in drug and alcohol recovery, or if you're smart, you can hire a former strip club DJ who can tell you what different types of pills are, just by their shape, or what substances a particular dancer is on, simply by judging which era(s) of Aerosmith she is comfortable dancing to.

Car Salesman

You can lie to desperate, cash-wielding people who shouldn't be on 82nd Avenue this time of night, right? Cool—you can sell cars. Being a former strip club DJ, however, will put you up there with the best of 'em (I have no idea who any famous car salesmen are, but I'm guessing one's name is "Earl," so consider yourself up there with Earl).

Trust me, out-of-work strip club DJ, you've done this job before. A couple from Seattle walks in, looking a little lost. You address them in your best voice and sleazy swagger.

"You looking for something a little new? Maybe with some trunk room? Or, perhaps you're in the market for something a little cheaper...this one in the pink trim is cute. Smells a bit like cigarettes, but she's easy to turn on. Now, this one, on the other hand, this is right off of the lot. Hasn't even been around the establishment—the owner barely even looked her over when she came in. A few miles, sure, but you can't tell with the body work that's been done. But, if you want to look around, we got 'em all...Porches, a few Mercedes and even an old Gremlin that usually just sits there, but I think the asking price is bottom dollar. The lady up front can even help you out with financing, if you need to break things down into smaller payments. Let me know if you have any questions, I'll be behind that dusty desk over there, dicking around on the internet and looking at between playing shitty nü metal and inappropriate-for-work rap music."

It's a pretty basic skill set, right? Well, so is selling cars.

And, if this column is received as well in the dressing room as I anticipate it being, you may just see me at your next vehicle trade-in, after you realize that Ford, Subaru and VW are all extremely racist companies with direct ties to Adolf Hitler (it's true) and that you better swap yours in for something a little more "Portland friendly," like a Bugatti. Or even a car.

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