Of strippers and snow
Not the most obvious pairing in the world, but today has included both.
Tim's friend Seth -- met through Friday night Magic -- turns 20 on Sunday. Kyle, another Magic player friend, turned 18 on Thursday. And Tim turned 30 on Friday. Quite a motley crew.
Once I found out Kyle was turning 18, I pointed out to Tim that it was his duty to take the kiddo to a strip club. Which is when we discovered that Seth had also never been. Later, Seth's friend Chad was also added to the strip-club-virgin roster.
Unfortunately, we've had quite the bad (for Seattle) weather around here lately. It snowed a little bit earlier in the week. The temperatures stayed below freezing, though, so the ice stuck around.
Then, Thursday, it snowed for a few hours. Tim and I were out celebrating his birthday a day early (so he could be down in Sumner with his family Friday). And the mall had decided to close at 5 p.m. (4 hours early) because of the snow. Some of the stores didn't even open that day! Mind-boggling.
The movie theater was staying open, after which we planned to go to Cheesecake Factory, but I was worn down. Tim was a little bummed but insisted I not push myself. Luckily, Tim was basically getting a 3-part birthday: Thursday in Seattle, Friday with family, Saturday with the boys.
As someone who grew up in Anchorage, I spent most of Thursday marveling at the city's annual reaction (read: panic) to snow. People get snowed in (I guess shovels don't exist down here), businesses close, accidents pile up. And most years we only get a couple of inches.
But every so often, we get a nice long cold snap (cold, here, being a relative term) and the snow comes several times, along with lots of ice. That's what this last week has been: snow or ice. So I avoided driving around as much as possible. I also spent the week before that feeling exhausted and worn down, which kept us off the roads.
As a result, Tim and I have saved a surprising amount of money. Rather than go grab some groceries to make dinner, we scrounged around in cupboards Granted, we didn't eat terribly healthy food -- but, then, we never do. A couple nights with nachos or some canned soup. Anything to avoid being out and about. It was a good reminder that we don't always have to spend money for food. We have odds and ends throughout the house.
Another way we saved was my energy. Based on the weather and random drivers' behavior, Mom decided she didn't want us driving down to Sumner. She was sure we'd get rear-ended and leave her without a car and with higher insurance rates.
Instead, Tim's mom sent his brother to pick us up. This meant that I didn't have the stress or fatigue that comes with driving 50 miles. We came down yesterday evening and mostly just chilled out. Tim spent some time chatting with his parents, I didn't feel so hot, so I lay down with a book.
Today at noon, Seth, Kyle and Chad showed up. I had been on the fence about going to the strip club with them. But I had a good night's sleep, and I decided it was worth it just to be a spectator at this event.
The real tipping point, though, was that they were going earlier rather than later. My energy tends to flag in the evenings. And we all agreed to start out mid-afternoon, since a big storm was predicted somewhere around 8 to midnight.
So at 3 p.m. we piled into the car and headed on over to the club in Tacoma. I spent a lot of the time laughing, as I watched the boys watch the girls. I swear, they were hypnotized.
I should actually stop and say that the girls were surprisingly good. I had heard enough about these joints so that I didn't expect much. But these girls were good dancers and definitely knew their stuff. And I have to say that a few of them impressed me with some gravity-defying pole work.
The deal was that, as a birthday present, Tim would pay for Kyle and Seth to get in, plus get each one a lap dance. But when they found out Kyle was newly 18 and at his first strip club, some guy bought him a dance. (Men seem to get awfully generous around naked women. I bet we could balance the national debt if more of us were willing to strip down now and again.)
Overall, I have to say that it was a hilarious and vaguely educational experience. I can't say I was nearly as into the entertainment as the men were. But they, themselves, were quite entertaining in their own right.
By the time the boys were ready to go -- none of us were exactly wealthy, so the money ran out quickly and several of the dancers left early, worried about the weather -- it was snowing pretty steadily.
In getting back to Tim's parents, Seth's little car was slipping around quite a bit. And the windshield refused to fully defrost. So we insisted the guys stay here, rather than have Seth risk life and limb to get to his parents' (normally a 5-minute drive, but only via a very steep hill).
So, as I type this, the boys are playing Magic the Gathering, the snow is falling pretty steadily outside, and I am still awestruck by the fact that men will pay so much money for women to sexually frustrate them. (Okay, and still slightly impressed by their moves, I'll admit it.)
Seriously, I know it's a right of passage and all, but I have never understood men that regularly go to strip clubs. I think most women can affirm this: There are lots of women out there who will sexually frustrate you for dinner and perhaps a movie.
Granted, man is a visual creature. So there is something to be said for spending money simply to look and not touch (as far as the law is concerned anyway). But it's just another way in which men and women are pretty darn divided. Most women just don't get it.
Whether you think it's degrading and another way to keep women down, or whether you're the jealous type who can't stand your man wanting to see other women naked (in which case, you better have a Power Bar because you have a long road ahead of you), or whether you're like me and just simply don't care and figure these girls gotta make a living too... Women just generally don't see the appeal of strip clubs.
That said, it's an excellent reminder that, no matter what you do well, chances are you can market it. Just a thought -- however sleazy -- for all you would-be entrepreneurs out there.