At first, I could not master the art of pole dancing, but things there have been progressively getting better. You know what they say: One does not give up just because of a little Indian brush burn to the crotch.
So I tried and tried and tried again until finally one of the seasoned pole charmers, Snapper, came to my aid and clasped her hands around my waist to add support while I gyrated and spiraled down the pole. Her fingers were yellowed from years of smoking Pall Malls’ that reminded me of my grandmama, who was also in the business back in the day. That gave me hope and a sense of familiarity.
We are not allowed to go topless because one night there was a suited man seated in the corner and the sight of topless women triggered something innately homicidal that he never knew he had in him, and he sliced a dancer open with a broken beer bottle. Ernie, the manager, made a new rule that requires us to wear pasties. I use pepperoni to cover up. It’s all part of my routine: I saunter onto stage with a piping hot pizza from Geno’s and seductively pull off two discs of pepperoni and slap them over my nipples, letting the attached cheese ooze down my chest like draping ornamental chains. It makes me feel like a Vegas showgirl. The guys seem to really like it because the scalding of my flesh makes me yell out in pain. Plus, it distracts them from my club foot. And the fact that it is hard to hoist my thick body up off the floor when I do my pole routine.
The other night when I was writhing around the peanut-shelled floor, shimmying in the direction of a rotund man in overalls and hoping for a tip greater than a can of sardines, I kept catching the scent of Dorito’s and seaweed salad. The biting tang seemed to get stronger every time I would do one of my signature leg lifts. The room cleared out rather quickly, except for one gangly old man who tipped me two dollars, a Chuck E. Cheese token and a recipe from the back of a Campbell’s Soup label, reasoning that my odor reminded him of his mama’s cookin’.
It wasn’t until after my show that I realized the scent was emanating from the sanitary napkin that I had left adhered to my underwear for over a week.