Over the past decade, strip clubs have gone from being regarded as lascivious, shameful breeding grounds for adultery to houses of socially-acceptable mainstream entertainment. Spend just five minutes on Instagram, and it’s clear that “strip club culture” is alive and well, with stripper aesthetics (lucite heels, string bikinis, tattoos) and stripper mantras (“hustle or die,” “no money no honey,” “make it rain”) being thrown around like singles on a stage. Sex worker fetishization and appropriation aside, it’s clear that our collective views around strip clubs have dramatically evolved, and I’m glad for it.
However, as someone who has been both working within and patronizing strip clubs since college, I’ve also gained a slightly different — yet significantly gayer — perspective on them.
Strip clubs are FULL of queers. And girl, do we have some STORIES to tell.
I’ve fallen victim to all kinds of stripper mishaps since first stepping on a stage at eighteen years old. It’s pretty common of the trade; when you combine scantily-clad bodies, alcohol, cash, and raging hormones, you’re bound to walk out with some shit to write home about.
I’ve had my wig fly off into the audience as I executed a pole trick and then had to chase a customer around the floor after he refused to give it back. I’ve fallen down an entire flight of stairs in 7” heels, sold private rooms to celebrities, and gotten paid to lick whipped cream and champagne off of beautiful women’s bodies while the customer played voyeur. I’ve held mangled outfits together with a rubber band and a prayer, negotiated rates with deaf customers in ASL, and given a lapdance where I realized halfway through that the person had a small dog concealed in their jacket.
All of this to say that I love hearing queer strippers dazzle me with tales from the club, and I recently asked a dozen of them to share their weirdest, funniest, most memorable lapdance experiences with you all. Enjoy!
1. The Butthole Burp
“I was giving this drunk dude a lap dance in the champagne room and it came with a bottle of champers. We had finished the bottle and he wanted to me dance again. When I stood up on the booth and started to “backward motorboat” him — jiggling my butt with his face between my cheeks — he burped really hard straight into my butthole. We both died laughing.”
– J, 26, San Francisco
2. The Runaway Prosthetic
“Years ago I was giving a lapdance to this older gentleman, and during one of my enthusiastic ‘bounce and wiggle’ moves, his leg fell off. I didn’t know he had a prosthetic! I helped him reattach himself and was terribly embarrassed, but he was super nice about it.”
– Morgan, 31, Connecticut
3. The Case Of The Missing Stripper Heels
“When I was forty years old I returned to my college town strip club that I worked at when I was twenty. I got a lap dance and told the girl that I used to work there, too. She name drops a woman who actually worked there when I did, says she’s her Aunt, and shows me her stripper heels. The heels had been a hand-me-down from her Aunt, but they were actually MY heels that went missing back then!”
– Candy, 31, Illinois
4. The Dead Deer Boner-Killer
“I used to work in a strip club that had giant TV screens positioned around the private dance area. I was working a pretty slow day shift and had just started a slow, sensual lapdance with a customer. At some point I caught a glimpse of his face and was confused by his terrified expression. I looked behind me to see the television screens all projecting graphic hunting scenes of deer getting shot in the head from some reality show. There wasn’t really any way to recover after that!”
– Mary, 32, Portland OR
5. The Cowboy Drag King
“My most ridiculous lapdance was in San Francisco. The guy was super stoned and got a VIP room, and what started off as me wearing his cowboy hat to be sexy and playful turned into me wearing his vest, leather jacket, bolo, and him drawing a mustache on me with my eyeliner. My new persona was “Wylin’ Willie” and he was my deputy. We stayed in VIP for two and a half hours talking entirely in cowboy accents.”
– June, 27, Southern California
6. The Donald
“I accidentally stuck my hand under a dude’s toupee while he was trying to pry my mouth open with his tongue. He didn’t even notice, so I flapped it a couple times for good measure.”
– Cyan, 32, Oakland
7. The Spitball
“I had a customer who had been sent to the club by his domme, with lingerie underneath his clothes, to find a stripper to use him. He was telling me various degradation stories during the dance, and mid-sentence I spat right at his crotch. He bought a whole lot more dances and tipped me VERY well!”
– Arabella Allure, 38, Alberta Canada
8. The Parents
“One of my more memorable couples dances was in the spring of last year. I initially connected with the woman, and then she asked me to dance for her partner. She watched as I danced for him, clearly enjoying it. But suddenly they ended the dance early because they needed to pick up their daughter from prom!”
– Reina, 25, San Francisco
9. The Menstrual Cycle
“One time after I’d been grinding on this guy, I dropped to my knees in front of him to slide up his body and immediately noticed that there were bloodstains on the crotch of his jeans. I initially panicked and almost brought it up to him — thinking he had injured himself in some way — until I realized that I had gotten my period during the dance and had bled ALL OVER HIM. I was mortified and had to keep my cool, relying on the dim lighting and the fact that he was pretty drunk to protect my secret. I spent the rest of the dance hovering over him without making contact and shoving my tits in his face so he wouldn’t look down!”
– Brooklyn, 35, Philadelphia
10. The Titanic
“I once had to give a lapdance to Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On” on repeat. The DJ thought he was being funny, but my customer couldn’t wait to get out of there!”
– Chelsea, 22, New Mexico
11. Luke, I Am Your Father
“I was working at my club and had spent most of my evening with this sweet preppy college kid who was popping his “strip club cherry” for the first time. As we were exiting a private room, I heard someone call out “Daniel?” and watched my guy’s head whip around. Turns out that his father was being led past us into the very same private room that we had just left! The girls and I didn’t know what to do, but father and son played it cool, awkwardly laughing it off and going their separate ways. I’m just glad it didn’t turn into a brawl!”
– Breanna, 25, New Orleans