Lolita’s Lap Dance – Part One
‘Lolita,’ I barely heard Pam calling over the throbbing bass that vibrated relentlessly through the ancient speaker system. ‘Lap dance!’ She pointed one hot pink talon at me and then beckoned me closer with it. I must have been making a face because hers broke into a smile, which hardly ever happened. Happiness didn’t suit Pam. With a physique like a Linebacker, a tight-curled perm that I imagined few had seen since 1895, and foundation, which was two shades too light, applied like spackle that sunk into the pores of her nose, Pam was terrifying to look at. Pam ran the club; Pam also knew I didn’t do lap dances.
I’d only been working at The Pacific Lounge for two days, but that was one of the conditions of my employment. I had specified absolutely no lap dances. I knew that’s how most of the girls made their money, but the idea of it freaked me out. The thought of grinding and shimmying in front of some pathetic specimen while he got a massive hard-on sickened me. I mean what did he do with it? I couldn’t think of any way that situation could resolve itself and I knew that I’d be tempted to slap it or swipe at it and probably end up getting arrested for assault, so it was safer if I just abstained.
I tried to play it cool as I approached the bar, perched on a stool and pushed my interlocked hands into my lap. I didn’t want to make a big deal about it, so I bit my tongue to stop myself from screaming.
Pam glowed under the black light like a radioactive toad, ‘You got a customer, Lola. Be real good to him. He asked for you special.’ She winked and then gave me the “thumbs-up.” I went to return the gesture, but I had knotted my hands so tightly together that they lost all feeling. I pulled them apart, shook them violently at my sides to revive them and tried my best to look pleased as I released my tongue from between my teeth.
‘Where ith he?’ It hurt to talk. I strained my eyes against the darkness and smoke, but couldn’t see past the reflective surface of Pam’s goulish face.
‘He’s in the back already.’ Pam jerked her head to the left which indicated he was in the Lap Dance Room. I winced slightly as I slid off the stool in a puddle, turned my back to her and inhaled until my lungs burned. I held that breath for as long as I could and then exhaled with my lips closed, making the fart-like sound my Dad and I called a “raspberry”. I learned in Drama School that exercise was good to relax my facial muscles. When I got nervous my mouth turned into a hard, straight line, and no one wants to get a lap dance from a stern fifteen-year-old.
Now, I wasn’t actually fifteen, but I danced under the name Lolita because I’d always looked really young for my age. I figured that adopting this persona may be the only time I’d be able to capitalize on that. Old guys loved it; it allowed them to be super-pervy in a public setting. I liked to think of it as doing community service.
Despite being a pole dancer, I tried to stay as covered up as possible, and, thanks to the state of Illinois being in the bible-belt, it meant it was illegal to dance in anything less than the equivalent of swimwear. The most flesh any of those sad cases ever saw was the same amount they could see for free if they headed to the local pool.
I started to take inventory of my current physical state from the top of my head and smoothed down the few stray hairs that had escaped from my pigtails while I was on stage. My white chiffon blouse was as luminous as Pam’s face and the black lace bra underneath peeked out just enough to allow a child-sized portion of cleavage to show. My midriff was bare and I took a moment to pick at the crust on the back of one of my navel piercings; my body was littered with shiny things, but that one just wouldn’t heal. I flicked the dried pus to the floor and adjusted the stockings that strained against my bright purple suspender belt, which showed just a touch under my comically short tartan skirt. As I ran my hands down the length of my leg I noticed a hole in the toe of my shocking and grimaced. I’d gone through three pairs of stockings in two days. I made a mental note to ask Pam if I could dance completely barefoot to save money on hosiery, knowing full-well she’d say ‘no.’
The Pacific had been extremely good to me in those first two days. Pam was always going on about how I had the nicest body there and she let me dance without wearing the sky-high heels that the other girls had to wear as uniform. My knees ached just looking at those shoes. They looked like something you’d use to wedge your door open or to kill your husband with. Those girls who balanced on them terrified me. I watched, paralaysed, as they scrambled up poles in them like sexy squirrels before dropping to the floor of the stage, legs akimbo, without making a sound.
Pam let me shuffle clumsily around the stage in an old pair of peep-toes that were only about two inches high. I told her it was due to a medical condition on account of wearing leg braces for most of my childhood to rectify my Hip Dysplasia. When I tried explaining this to Pam she wrinkled up her face and said ‘Dizpleesure? But that’s for dogs, aint it?’ I wasn’t really sure how to respond, so I just nodded real slow and tried to look somber.
‘Dogs and me, I guess.’ I didn’t care if Pam thought I was half-dog, as long as I didn’t have to teeter around on those crazy shoes, just one misstep away from breaking my neck.
photograph by Hurricane