(She is sitting backstage on a stool, chewing on a fingernail with one hand. In the other hand is a cigarette. She is dressed in a black leather miniskirt and bustier. There are splashes of color in her jewelry. Her hair is in a bouffant do, plastered with hairspray. She wears black lace tights and high heeled boots. Her makeup is heavy, but skillfully done, yet her eyes are panicked. She stands up and paces, then sits again.)
Maury! Maury! I need a glass of water! Where the Hell are you, Asshole? MAURY! Shit!
(She stands up and paces, then sits again. She tosses the cigarette on the stage and stomps it out.)
Don’t look at me like that. (pause) Like I’m some kind of a freak show for you...I’m not. Fuck! They get it. The men get it and they like it. (pause) I don’t know why they like it but they do and so do I! Look at me. I’m strong! I kick ass! Nobody messes with me.
I don’t know. Sixteen, I think...why? (pause) Some guy from school...Al. Albert. It was O.K. What do you care? You some kind of perv? (laughs) It was no big deal. I didn’t even know what was happening and then it was over. Right! Wham! Bam! Thank you, Ma’am. It got better after that. I mean, the first one’s like a...you got to get that out of the way and then you can start to learn with nothing in the way. It’s not like I was handing it out on the street or nothing. I thought I was in love. Right! A dozen times...I thought I loved the dumb bastard! Thought it was all sunshine and roses and I was going to end up with a fucking shanty in the suburbs. Petunias in the Garden, right?
(She lights another cigarette.)
There was one...Bobby Vittola. We thought we was going to make it. I sort of got pregnant...and that sort of fucked it up. But, we was going to try...and then, I lost it. That fucked it up even more. Bye, Bye Bobby. (pause) This is my first job dancing, you know? With the pole. The pole! They wish they were! Fucking economy, it’s the only way left to earn a paycheck...a good paycheck.
(She begins to pace and sing.)
She works hard for de money...so hard for de money... (spoken) When they start whooping and applauding, it gets easier...almost natural. Bonnie Rae taught me, she said don’t get vulgar...surprise them with a little move...a sudden pop! And don’t let any of them come backstage. Don’t fuck anybody you meet in the bar. It’ll just break your heart...or worse, get you killed.
Anyway, I got a man now. (pause) No, not a young guy...he’s a little older...been around the block a couple of times. Sometimes, he just wants to watch me walk across the room wearing nothing but a necklace or my boots. Christ! The smile he gets on his face right then, you’d think I’d given him a b.j., just from looking at me. (pause) You’re kidding? What kind of a College do you go to...b.j. is a blow job... fellatio...seriously, Honey! You need to try it sometime. Just to see the smile on his face. You know, I’ll bet you came up with this idea about writing a paper on pole dancers to make some man happy...some professor...yeah, yeah, yeah, you may not admit it but that’s what I think it is! What’s his name? (pause) Jackson, right! Yeah, I know...you just want to write it...sure! You’re just like me. You like them with a little salt and pepper in the beard. (pause) No! Not if I don’t want to...nobody gives me orders. My man knows to ask nice. He doesn’t have to ask at all, I can just tell from the look in his eyes. (pause) Of course, I’m his equal...I’m the equal of every one of those guys out there...probably moreso. More equal because they’re paying to look at me. They crawl to put a dollar in my waistband. They crawl to me. O.K. College Girl...it’s show time! Take notes. (to herself) Deep breath, Kid. Be their Queen!
(A pole descends from the ceiling. The lights change to blue and purple as she throws her leg around the pole and tosses back her hair. She looks beautiful and magical. End of scene.)