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Two VICE Writers Walk Into A Bar

I try not to let the positions of the sun, moon, and other planetary objects dictate how I go about my daily life. That being said, there are two things I really try to avoid when there is a full moon: using public transportation and working at the strip club. People get weird. Hipster girls on lesbianic friend dates find their way into the club, act like assholes, and then blog about it.

I’ve never been to Pumps myself, but I can visualize a strip club with the lights on and the music off, the bartender counting out the till, the bouncer placing stools on the bar, and the dancers getting dressed. On a busy Friday night, this might be the first time they’ve all been in the same place at the same time. They can finally ask each other “what was up with those really drunk bitches?” and “did you see when they got kicked out and one of them screamed that she left her scarf and that we’re mean? It was amazing.” And then someone will note that maybe the supermoon brought out such bad behavior from a pair of women who didn’t look like they would be jerks. Some of them would give the two the benefit of the doubt and agree that they are probably nicer people when they’re not doing shots underneath a 14% bigger, 30% brighter moon.

This Week In Tourist Reports

One of these tourist reports typically pops up in my Google alerts every week. Someone ventures inside a strip club for the first time and shares his/her tale with the world as if he/she is Neil Armstrong. Last week it was an insecure lesbian who felt threatened when a stripper at Jumbo’s talked to her date. Even cool writers are guilty of lame tourist reports where they sound grateful to have made it out alive.

This week’s gem is featured on dating advice website, YourTango, and it’s a doozy. (YourTango was never even on my radar until the founder/CEO embarrassed herself last summer with that bizarre Indian fetishist piece in the Huffington Post.) The author starts off by letting us know that she’s boldly going where no woman has gone before: a bachelor party weekend in Atlantic City with 27 dudes.

Hookers Stand Up

Last Sunday, BDSM community site FetLife did what a lot of popular sites do every once in a while—it crashed. And the person running FetLife’s Twitter account made a poorly chosen joke: “Whoops… FetLife just went down like a drunk hooker…”, later saying that they “Couldn’t think of anything better to say!” and “I make equal fun of everyone.”

People (most of them polite) called FetLife out on both the comment and what sounded like a justification wrapped in apology packaging. All in all, they were pretty gentle reactions for a tweet that encouraged the stereotype of the incapacitated hooker:

You’re Not Funny: SNL Can’t Parody Porn Stars

swarovski.jpgI spent the better part of last June gluing rhinestones to this one wall in my apartment. At some point during the second week I started wearing a toolbelt full of E6000 glue, wadded up paper towels, sparkly bits and the syringes I use to control where the glue goes. I should mention that the toolbelt was being worn instead of pants as opposed to on top of pants. I should also mention that my apartment has horrible ventilation and I was probably kind of high on glue fumes. The glue fumes may have contributed to my decision to climb the radiator instead of using a ladder.

On the night of the 14th there was a knock on my door. The only person who knocks on the inside door is my superintendent. His name is Jorge. I yelled “Come in” and then realized that he might be upset about the fact that I was sticking things to the wall with heavy-duty glue. Fortunately, Jorge is a very special creature. He took in the whole spectacle, exclaimed “Oh my god!” and proceeded to gush in his Puerto Rican-Brooklynite accent about how much he loved where I was going with the concept. Then he ran upstairs and came back with a giant box of “Sarchovskys? Warsovskys? Whatevah. I thought you might be able to use them for your project.” See, at some point in the past decade someone had left a giant box of Swarovski crystals at his apartment. Happy Birthday to me. No, seriously. The next day was my birthday.

You’ve Got Problems: Sex Worker Childhoods

By RedSofa on Flickr

It’s supposed to be common knowledge that I ended up in my job as an escort because, as a child, I suffered some serious emotional damage. But from the inside looking out, it’s clear to me that non-sex workers have plenty of issues all their own. Last week, one of them kept jumping out at me: civilian women’s cavalier clichés about sex workers’ pasts.

I know plenty of men believe that every sex worker has had a screwed up childhood. For me, though, accusations of familial damage cut a lot deeper when they’re thrown around by women, particularly women with otherwise feminist chops (*coughcough* Tina Fey.) We all suffer from slut/whore/man-hater sexism—meaning we’re all vulnerable to the stigma against a woman expressing sexuality in any “deviant” way—so shouldn’t we all reject that misogyny? It’s obvious that the abused sex worker myth is a symptom of our culture’s need to pathologize sexual women, and it should be obvious why the “some adult must have screwed you up when you were little” jab is a mean-spirited, ignorant, and completely trite accusation—but apparently it isn’t. For women like Mary Elizabeth Williams, let me break down the myriad ways it sucks.