Tag Archives: lesbian travel

The Dinah 2015: Dinah turns 25!

I’m so excited! I’m going to be there again this year. Are you? I can’t wait to hear the line up! And, I note they’ve spelled all the celebrity names right (unlike me). I’ve so much to learn…

CLUB SKIRTS DINAH SHORE WEEKEND COMMENCES CELEBRATION OF ITS
2015 SILVER ANNIVERSARY:
CELEBRATING 25 EPIC YEARS OF WORLD-CLASS ENTERTAINMENT AS ONE OF PALM SPRINGS’ LEADING SIGNATURE EVENTS

IMG_0753.JPGPalm Springs, CA – The legendary Dinah Shore Weekend, founded and produced by Mariah Hanson under her Club Skirts marquee, has officially commenced the six-months long celebration of its Silver Anniversary.

April 1-5, 2015 Club Skirts Dinah Shore Weekend is turning twenty-five and taking the event to a new zenith.

Twenty-five years of excellence and unwavering commitment to deliver world-class entertainment and top notch customer service that continue as Mariah Hanson and her team commemorate the landmark by honoring the partnerships that have been part of the amazing journey and contributed to the event’s stratospheric success.

A quarter-century ago, Mariah Hanson did more than just kick-start her Dinah. She also and most importantly launched what would become her enduring legacy to both the city of Palm Springs and the LGBT community.

From a small, one-night event at a Palm Springs museum with 1,500 participants twenty-five years ago, to booking lavish locations at deluxe hotels over five days of epic pool parties and world-class entertainment with some 15,000-plus attendees and major corporate sponsors today, Club Skirts Dinah Shore Weekend has evolved into one of Palm Springs and the Coachella Valley’s largest tourism boosters and undisputed biggest lesbian event of its kind in the world.

The natural symbiosis shared by these two iconic LGBT Mecca has continuously been a match made in heaven. More than a tradition The Dinah Shore Weekend has over these past 25 years (and counting) become a Palm Springs institution and one of the city’s most popular spring attractions.

Once the party pied-a-terre of Frank Sinatra and his Rat Pack, who turned Palm Springs into America’s most glamorous destination for the glitterati in the 1950s, the famous sunny oasis has now gotten back in the swing of things to once again reclaim its status as one of Hollywood’s hippest playground and the world hub for major high-profile festivals and special events.

The envy of the world with its 360-days of sunshine, the swanky modern city of glitz and glamour has been attracting a new generation of visitors from young hipsters, international jet-setters to Hollywood A-listers and socialites, who vie for the ultra-chic weekend getaway of martini-sipping, cabana lounging and celebrity sightseeing.

As one of the early pioneers, the Dinah has become one of Palm Spring staple events sharing the spotlight with the likes of the Coachella Music Festival, Stagecoach, The Palm Springs International Film Festival, the BNP Paribas Open Trophy, and the PGA and LPGA golf tournaments –all intrinsically linked to the famous desert community.

In the span of twenty five years The Dinah has cemented its status as not only an event the entertainment industry’s most elite go to but also as a trendsetting event that music industry insiders watch and jockey to book their artists’ performances.

It is the only acknowledged all-girl party that features such a phenomenal line-up of talent to ever to perform at a lesbian event. Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, Colbie Caillat, India Arie, The Pussycat Dolls, Kesha and more recently Iggy Azalea, are just a few examples of major recording artists that headlined the epic event while still “unknown” and then systematically went on to hit international superstardom.

While The Dinah has been spearheading music careers, it has, most importantly, also been transforming lives and making a difference in and for the LGBT community. Offering an unparalleled one-of-a-kind experience for myriads of women who come every year from all over the world to enjoy the freedom to be who they truly are without fearing the judgment of others, and gain, as well, a tremendous amount of self worth.

The event has also been serving as a platform to mobilize the LGBT community around humanitarian projects and social issues, famously partnering in previous years with a variety of activist associations and charity organizations such as GLAAD, HRC, NOH8, Love is Louder, Equality California, and The Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center among others.

The Dinah has certifiably come to represent an ever-growing movement that has crossed over to mainstream bringing more and more visibility to the lesbian community – one that had never existed before.

Now ready to soar to new heights, the 25th installment of The Dinah is already expected to be one of the major highlights of the 2015 Palm Springs festival season.

Club Skirts Dinah Shore Weekend is not just breaking grounds; it is making history!

Club Skirts Dinah Shore Weekend 2015 will be held April 1 through the 5th in Palm Springs, CA. For More Information go to: http://www.TheDinah.com

Facebook: Facebook.com/ClubSkirtsDinahShoreWeekend

Twitter: @Dinahshore
Pinterest/Instagram: #DinahShore
#thedinah25

To learn more about The City of Palm Springs visit: http://www.visitgreaterpalmsprings.com

http://www.thedinah.com

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The Lesbian Mastermind behind The Dinah: An Interview with Mariah Hanson

This interview was published over at Huffington Post on October 13, 2014. I have shared it here for my WordPress friends.

I had the opportunity to sit down and talk with Mariah Hanson who runs The Dinah each year in Palm Springs. As confirmation of her lifetime of success, Mariah will be honored by The Center in Palm Springs with its first ever “Legacy Award” to recognize exceptional work on behalf of LGBT people living in the Coachella Valley. I met her this year at The Dinah and she was charming. I was lucky enough to get to ask her some questions well after the dust on the event settled.

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Tell me about yourself.
I am a very passionate woman interested in all aspects of really discovering all the ways we can grow and be the best person we can be. My event reflects that, working my weekend is like going through EST or a seminar. We really lay the groundwork for people to see how they can make a difference. How they can reach out to people who are on the edge, heartbroken, maybe in crisis, or in mourning. The vibe with my staff is really about making a very welcoming amazing first impression with people and then letting that experience flow throughout the weekend. Think about a fancy restaurant with a famous chef. The first course is fantastic. Then you have to go to the bathroom, excuse yourself, and you go in and it’s disgusting. How do you feel when you walk back to your food? Doesn’t matter how good the chef is now. I may be the face of Dinah, but everyone is important. Even the janitor.

I am definitely an event producer, who loves what I do and feels incredibly honored to do what I do. An individual who, as I grow older, is really enjoying the opportunity that we all have to grow and be kind and make a difference. Making a positive difference in our lives is really important. The journey that we have to take has a ripple effect. I love what I do. And then I ride horses. I am a cowgirl. I drive a Chevy. People wouldn’t recognize me.

How do you feel Dinah has developed?
I think it’s seen an incredible growth trajectory. It started out as a pretty wild three-day party focused around drinking and DJ driven. 24-25 years later it is an international lesbian music festival with film, comedy, live music, and charity. It just has become this amazing event. We gave feedback forms last year at the film festival and the feedback was more events like this – mostly from women in their 30s and 50s. As the event grows there is room to do different stuff during the Dinah.

How do you manage to top the year before?
Well I will tell you my goal isn’t to get bigger every year. The goal is just to throw the most amazing event for lesbians in the world. Other events are changing, more talent that is recognizable because gay events set the bar.

Do you see other event promoters as competition?
No. I see it as a win-win. You are in New Orleans and at that beignet shop – you know what I am talking about – there is a line around the block. [Cafe du Monde] Someone comes to NOLA and sees the line and thinks, wow they are making a lot of money; I want to open a beignet shop. But they aren’t as good at making beignets. So they revert to competitive tactics and send the health department over to the other shop. The other option is to see the line and think that this town loves pastries! Let’s open a bakery and make almond croissants. Second scenario: Everyone in NOLA is going to get really fat and be eating a lot of beignets and croissants. First: competitor will go out of business, not everyone is a beignet baker. Not everyone is nightclub promoter.

Favorite memory from the past 24 Dinah’s?
I’ve got a couple. One is listening to the Pussycat Dolls sing Don’t Cha. Another is talking to Katy Perry’s manager about Lady Gaga; I felt this presence behind me as I was talking to him. It was so strong and I turned around – it was Katy Perry, listening to everything I was saying to her manager. She is absolutely stunning and deserves her success. She has a good heart and is really funny. I was really blown away by her. Mary Lambert this year was spellbinding. I was so moved by her.

Me, too. Have you noticed a change in the crowd or any shifts?
I started producing independently in 2006 and that meant that I could make sure everyone was invited to the party and embrace the diversity of our community. If you go now it is incredibly diverse, people from all over the world, different pockets all over the US that are not as accepting as they could be, but at Dinah something different happens. It’s like walking through the door to Narnia and they just embrace the diversity. It is the most positive vibe over the weekend. It is amazing and thrills me. Look around. Look to your left and look to your right. This is amazing. We have 5 days of the most diverse and beautiful people. I’d like to invite the United Nations to come to Dinah and take notes. We can get along. Our differences are so small in the big scheme of things. It happens organically, but we are picking the seeds that we plant. I don’t allow my staff to be rude; if they are rude, they don’t come back. Customers aren’t allowed to be rude either. Positive seeds – treat every customer like gold. We are planting seeds that foster that kind of garden. So there is a stage that is set, and then it happens organically. Valuing and honoring people who attend the event. We appreciate that they are there and want them to have a wonderful weekend. I can’t take responsibility for the weekend, only for the stage.

I’m not so sure about that, Mariah. Who’s on your dream line up?
P!nk – been trying to get her forever. Bring Katy Perry back. Ok, here is my dream line up: P!nk, Katy Perry, Earth Wind & Fire, Chrissie Hynde, Justin Timberlake, and Dolly Parton. Challenge is that you have to stay relevant.

What is one thing people don’t know about you?
I am a bookworm. And, I do a Christmas poetry slam every year.

How fascinating! We talked about this for a few minutes. Mariah and her best friend recite poetry with each other to celebrate. With that, we moved on to the Lightning Round. Yes or no answers, no elaboration needed.

Favorite beer?
Stella, not a beer drinker. I prefer it on draft. I am a wine drinker – big reds.

Cars or motorcycles?
Cars, unless you say Vespa – in purple.

Rather be hot or cold?
Hot, hate to be cold.

Prefer to wear silver or gold?
Gold, I like silver more than I used to.

Books or movies?
Books. If you ask me fiction or nonfiction, then biographies. Why am I reading fiction when the lives of these people are so much more colorful than anything someone made up?

Straight ties or bow ties?
Bow ties, I have to go with eccentric. But, I am more into dresses and if she wore a tie.

And, with her last answer, I sat up a little taller, straightened my bow tie and thanked Mariah for her time. I have to say that I was expecting her to be different. I don’t know how exactly. Maybe less personal. A little more full of herself. After all, she runs the biggest lesbian event in the world. She gets huge talent to come to the desert to sing for several thousand women. Every year. She is a legend. But not as in old, just as in – it’s The Dinah! She has been running The Dinah since it was actually a golf tournament, with a party on the side (as opposed to the week-long party it is now). She wasn’t full of herself, though. She was funny and charming, and hot. I really enjoyed our talk. I can’t wait to go to The Dinah again next year.

It’s Butch to create something that gives so many lesbians joy, year in and year out. Thank you, Mariah. That’s very Butch. Be Butch.


Hunting for Valentines: Interview with Kiyomi

 

Kiyomi is talented... and hot.

Kiyomi is talented… and hot.

 

I broke my interviewing cherry with Kiyomi McCloskey from Hunter Valentine. Now, don’t worry. I already know that I am not a journalist (surprise!), nor do I write for Rolling Stone, so I decided to just talk to Kiyomi — and, of course, ask questions that I thought people who read my blog would be interested in: things about beer, fashion, travel, dating, and being butch. If you want more of the “who’s your musical influence”-type questions, go check out Hunter Valentine’s website. Oh, and Google them, as many journalists do. Read the rest of this interview on the Huffington Post:

Hunting for Valentines: Interview with Kiyomi.

Let the Huffington Post know you like ButchOnTap

Let the Huffington Post know you like ButchOnTap

While you are there, would you please hit the “like” button next to my name at the top of the page? This is to like me as an author, rather than liking the particular article. Of course, you can do that too. ;o) Thank you!


Nothing is Lost In Translation

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Look! Charcuterie to Go.

So, I’m here in Tokyo. I tell anyone who asks me that I have two favorite cities. One is Barcelona – for the weather, food (amazing charcuterie), people, architecture, you name it. It is a warm, inviting and beautiful city filled with gorgeous buildings, parks, and women. Plus, I speak the language – mostly. The other is Tokyo. Why? It’s not the weather. Each of the three times I have been there, it has been cold (late October, early December, and late February). I’ve yet to make it during the coveted Cherry Blossom season. Then, what? Food? Not as much as Barcelona, recall that I despise sushi. Two things. The people and just how foreign it is.

THE PEOPLE

To a one, the people in Tokyo are absolutely ridiculous. Indeed, the people I have met there, the strangers who have gone out of their way (repeatedly) to help me, make me dislike Americans. We aren’t so friendly in comparison. The people are just so kind, considerate, and interested in what you have to say. And service is king. The women are lovely, and the men all seem gay to me – the younger ones at least – and that makes me feel super comfortable. “Gay or European?” really should be “Gay or Japanese?” Oh, and I love the sense of style. Color! Patterns. A Scarf! Socks that are crazy patterns. Bring it. Love it. Plus, any country that is absolutely head over heels in love with Hello Kitty, or Kitty Chan, as she is affectionately called, is more than alright with me.

JUST HOW FOREIGN IT IS

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Signs everywhere, but what do they say?

This is kind of hard to explain. The thing about Tokyo is that it is so, so, so NOT America. I mean, it’s not the US, Canada, England, or Scotland. Duh, Butch. It’s in Asia. No, I get that. What I mean is that it is the one place that I have been where I felt totally and absolutely out of my element. What do I mean by that? You can’t read the signs. In Italy, France, Portugal, Mexico, and many other countries I can decrypt most words enough to figure out “police” versus “pub.” Not so here in Tokyo. If the picture next to the Hiragana word for Shinkansen didn’t let you know it was a train, you would be still searching – and you would miss your train that will absolutely be leaving on time without you.

Most people do not speak English (or they might not let on that they do). Money from an ATM? Good luck. Want to use your cell phone? I don’t think so. It is an entire city that is homogeneous. Everyone looks very similar – and no one looks like me. By this, I do not mean to discount the amazing differences between Japanese people. No, not at all. What I mean is that much more than in the US or England, the people have similar coloring.

Now, that is not to say that there aren’t similar minded people there. That there aren’t Butches, lesbians, mothers, democrats, atheists, English speaking people, bow-tie wearing lovers of musicals, operas and craft beers. Of course there are. But more than any other place I have been, the people look similar to each other and they don’t look like me. I am still taller than most, blonder, bigger, and let’s face it whiter, more awkward and more rude. Try as I might not to be any of those last three.

Want me to prove it? When I travel there, with two different companies, I have been given a “handler.” It is so different, so much harder to get around and find your way, that companies assign someone to help you get from point A to point B. And, thank goodness.

So, it is indeed foreign. It is like being in a sea of beautiful Koi – all of whom it seems understand me and are unbelievable kind – and I am a flounder. Also, I am pretty much in love with the culture of respect. There may be other countries, other cultures, that value each other and respect each other the way the Japanese do, but I haven’t found them yet. Evidence the bow. I love this. It is not subservient or menial. It is a strong, self-possessed person giving way by bowing to another. It says, thank you. It says, I am sorry. I says, hello. How about this? When you leave your office at night, you stand near the door and bow to your colleagues saying Osakini shitsureshimasu. Translation? “I am sorry that I am leaving before you.” How great is that? Even the ground crew for my plane leaving Tokyo bowed to the plane/pilot as we rolled away from the gate. It is a way to honor the other person. I freaking love the bow. How weird would it be if I just incorporated this into my everyday life back home in SoCal? I think I just might. Hello, bow. I am sorry that you had a bad day, bow. Thank you for serving me, bow. Sigh. The respect that this imparts is really ridiculous. I had a protracted conversation on my last evening with the younger colleagues about the bow, the significance, the depth of the bow. It was fascinating.

NOTHING IS LOST IN TRANSLATION

Even though I do not speak Japanese, I have learned enough to impress almost everyone I meet. I think this is more of a sign of how difficult (translation, foreign) the Japanese language is for Americans, rather than the strength of what I’ve learned. I would love to learn more. It is a beautiful language. When I listen to my colleagues and friends speak, I catch a word here and there (thank you, I’m sorry, we, I understand, no, yes, beer, please, woman), but it is nothing like when I hear any one speak a Romance language. I catch lots of those words. Again, foreign. Am I getting this across? And, yet, I feel welcome. Comfortable here.

Perhaps it is because I am at a point where I am trying to find difference. Searching for adventure. Seeking out places where I feel uncomfortable. I love it when English is the second language, or even better, not even on the sign. I think this is why I love Tokyo (and the other parts of Japan that I have visited). Maybe I just like being out of my own element. Way, way outside my comfort zone.

Whatever the reason, I don’t feel like anything is lost in the translation even when I do not understand a single word of what is being said. It’s butch to be out of your element. Be Butch.


What Did Butch Pack for Dinah Vegas 2013? Too Much, Probably.

20130429-201652.jpgI went to Dinah Vegas this past weekend. It’s the Vegas version of the more traditional Dinah Shore Weekend in Palm Springs (which I I wrote about a few weeks ago), but this one is sponsored by L.A.’s Girl Bar. It’s another lesbian spring break. Ironically, I am no longer young enough to act like a spring breaker, but I never did spring break when I was young enough, so why not go and have some fun?

I tend to overpack, always. Overpacking may be something that some people normally attribute to our fairer femmes, but I’d bet that plenty of butches overpack. Our hair products alone could fill one carry-on. Let me give you a quick and dirty list of my essentials…

Read the rest on the Huffington Post Gay Voices.


I Don’t Like Sushi

I don’t like sushi. There, I said it. I love veggie rolls, and anything that is cooked, but not raw fish. It’s a problem. For real. And something I will either have to hide while in Japan or be prepared to deal with.

My Japanese colleagues will want to take me to excellent sushi. After all, what do most Americans want to experience in Japan? Sushi. So, I will go and eat sushi and I will drink lots of sake and it will be fine. I also cannot stand shellfish. Any kind of shellfish. Lobster, crab, scallops, mussels, abalone, clams, oysters – disgusting. The lot of them. Again, I realize that this makes me a bit of a freak. Whenever I am at a high-end event and all of my friends and colleagues are freaking out about the “amazing crab legs” or the “ridiculous oyster bar” I just shake my head. It’s really a texture thing for me. The flavor is ok really, but I can’t stomach the texture of these sea creatures.

On top of that, they are sea creatures, very small animals. When served, they frequently are still the whole animal. I have trouble eating a life. A piece of pork under cellophane in the market, or a lovely piece of steak on my plate, totally distanced from its source, is one thing. And both pigs and cows are indeed delicious. But a lobster, in tact, sitting on my plate? No, it’s too much for me. A friend said it really well recently. She is a marine biologist and she shares my distaste for all of these sea creatures, which she explains are her friends. How can she eat her friends? I note that she is a very attractive femme, and I would try anything she asked me to, so it’s a good thing she doesn’t care for shellfish. To my friends reading this, if you didn’t know that about me, take note. It can easily be a new sport for you – a form of hazing Butch.

And, before you say, “Butch, you need to try it,” let me assure you that I have. My ex wife is a lobster freak (I assume this is still the case), and my ex GF loved all manner of sushi and shellfish. Each of them at various points in our relationships encouraged me to try all of these items over and over again in case my tastes had changed. And, of course, I always try things that I am asked to try. Each time, I would say, “Of course, honey” and try what I was offered. My tastes had not changed, much to their chagrin. Even last weekend at dinner with a bunch of friends at an amazing place, a friend was over the moon with her scallops – my least favorite of all shellfish – and she asked me to try them. She’s a pretty femme, and well, what can I say? Of course I did as she asked and tried a bite – washing it down with the Chimay I was drinking as politely as I could. Blech.

So, I am an American business woman in Japan (sounds like a tag line for a show) and a lesbian at that. And, I don’t like sushi. I refuse to make that joke – you know the one – because I think it’s gross and very, very far from the truth, but I’d be a fool if I didn’t acknowledge that at least some of you are thinkng it. For shame.

Dear Japanese people and sushi fans the world over: I am sorry.

Dear PETA and fish friends: you are welcome.

Well, what can I say? It’s butch (or at least good business) to eat things you don’t want to in order to not offend your hosts? Ok. Be Butch.


Lesbians Gone Wild: Dinah Shore Weekend

Lesbians Gone Wild: Dinah Shore Weekend

I am very excited to share that the Huffington Post Gay Voices is carrying my second piece. The first one that they carried was my piece on the TSA and it kind of changed my life as far as visibility and legitimacy. I was afraid that I would only get that one shot. Especially because most of my stuff is fun and fluffy, rather than serious like that painful piece.

Thankfully, I was wrong and they have a fun piece up today. Hooray! Would you please head over there and check it out?

Thank you all for your support!


The King Treatment

Yes, please.

Yes, please.

I’m enjoying my third trip to Japan. All have been for business. This means several things. First, it means that I have a carefully planned agenda, filled with meetings, occasional sight-seeing events, cool meals (with tons of people), and nice accommodations. I love to travel, but I don’t fly business class when I am traveling for pleasure.

There is a huge downside, of course. You do not control your itinerary. As it is with my current trip. I am traveling for a full 5 days, to get two and a half days in the office working. There will be no time for any side trips. If my energy allows, which I think it will, I will wander about after the long business dinners are over. But that will only allow some exploration in Tokyo. Perhaps Roppongi or Shinjuku, the gay area. Yes, I will make sure to head over there. I’ve been to both before and had fun in each place.

On my two previous trips, I travelled with colleagues; but on this trip, it is just me. No companions. I am really looking forward to it.

As I write this, I am flying. Sitting in business class. Ahhh. Deep sigh of relief. It is a wonderful experience. Over the course of the twelve-hour flight, there is all manner of goodies, beverages and snacks. It is so much fun. Kind of like a kid in a candy store. Unlike coach, business class has choices – lots of them. Shortly after take off, I was served orange juice or champagne (any guesses as to which I chose?). Then I was given a menu and asked to review it. There will be a main meal service, and then there are a variety of things you can order at anytime during the long flight. And, there is a long list of alcohol and other beverages you may enjoy.

The food is delicious. First an amuse bouche of blue cheese and fruit, and a Manchego, almond and smoked duck dip. Then, the hors d’oeuvres of marinated scallop, tuna pastrami, and foie gras mousse. The main dish that I chose was prime beef wellington, with a portabella mushroom pastry and mashed potatoes (lobster thermidor is the other choice). Dessert was Panna Cotta with mangoes. Yes, on the plane.

At varying points in the flight, I have had Jack, Champagne, and Japanese beer (almost always disappointing). Near the end of the flight, after I woke up, I enjoyed a cheese and fruit snack followed by a roast beef and horseradish mayonnaise sandwich (tiny) with a lovely salad of lettuce, asparagus and balsamic. Are you getting the picture that the food was good?

The flight attendants of JAL.

The flight attendants of JAL.

More than that, the service is amazing. I have had at least four different flight attendants help me, check on me, offer me items. All of them are young and lovely, too, by the way. I think the labor and employment laws in Japan are quite different from in the US (I know this, actually). Most of the time when I fly Southwest Airlines, I feel awkward about asking for anything. The last few times, I’ve either been helped by attendants who were older than my mom, or pregnant. How am I going to ask either of those women for anything? I can’t really expect someone my mom’s age or older to go get me more peanuts. How can I ask a pregnant woman to fetch me a Jack on the rocks? Isn’t that cruel? I mean, she can’t have one. So, JAL is a nice change. Here, there is literally a flock of super kind, super attentive, super deferential Japanese flight attendants. All have lovely smiles for me when I ask for something. All make me feel like it really is their pleasure to serve me – rather than an inconvenience because they really are just here for our safety (the message the US airlines disseminate more and more).

So I sit back with my slippers on, enjoying the warm towels each time they bring one, and order whatever I want. I feel like a king. And this is not just on the airplane. The Japanese people have an amazing ethic about service. They take pride in doing it well. If you are in their restaurant, they will make you feel like a king. Indeed, I’ve never been anywhere else in the world (yet), where you can literally yell out “Sumi mas sen!” whenever you want something, and someone will sprint to your side to get it for you. It’s how its done. It’s not rude. Like, say for example the one time last summer when I was in the Mediterranean and I actually whistled in a pub. My British companions almost fainted because what I did was so rude. And it was rude. I will never do that again. Ever. In Japan, though, that is not an issue.

It’s butch to let others take care of you when it is their job – especially when they make you feel like a king. Be Butch.


A Spotless Bowtie

Can you spot the bow tie?

Can you spot the bow tie?

When I was in Tokyo last month I had the privilege of visiting one of our factories. This is where my company makes some ridiculously sophisticated stuff. I mean, seriously. I could not possibly explain it. So, I was delighted to fly to a distant island in Japan and zip on into a special place where no lawyer has been able to go before. One small step for Butch Jaxon, One giant step for Butches everywhere.

This is one of those places where you cannot leave dirt, hair, sweat, or DNA. I had to wear a special suit to visit this “clean room” environment. This means that two women helped me into a hair net (which is bad for the hawk), face mask, special suit (with double cuffs at the arms and ankles), a ski mask like hood, and special booties. Oh so sexy. After getting into my E.T. or Monsters Inc. like outfit, I walked down a corridor filled with air hoses to blow off any remaining filth and into an air-locked chamber before entering the clean room. Wow. What a neat experience.

After the visit (I could tell you what I saw and learned but I’d have to kill you), as the same women were helping us out of our special sterile gear, our guide offered to take our picture. I knew I had to do it. I donned the gear again, and of course, added my special touch. Can you see it?

It’s butch to accessorize, even in the toughest environments, and with the ugliest outfits imaginable. Be Butch.


Three Lesbians Walk Into a Strip Club

Vegas' OG strip club

Vegas’ OG strip club

So, in my last post I left off with the statement, “Umm, how about a strip club?” Well…

Yes! We had a winner. Into a cab we piled and headed way off the strip to Olympic Gardens. I’ve never been here before, but it’s a bit of a Vegas institution. The bottom floor is women strippers, and the top is men. Something for everyone. As we got into cab, the bellman said, “OG.” I took it as a compliment. Yeah, we are original gangsters because – you know – we were rolling like that. LOL. I mean, really. Three white lesbians cocked and ready to go.  Oh yea.

No, Butch, you lame ass. That’s what they call the club. So, off to OG we “rolled.”

Now, I have been to plenty of strip clubs in my day. Enough to relax about it. But, being single. Being in Vegas. With good friends. I got excited. Like when you are about-to-board-a-roller-coaster excited. In we went, slightly (fairly?) intoxicated.

I imagine that a few of you reading this might never have been to a strip club – perish the thought! As I have written before, I am available to be your wingman or tour guide for such an outing. Or, better yet, take your girlfriend – that’s hot. In the meantime, allow me to set the stage – so to speak. I mean, you won’t find Butch dancing on any poles – at least not in public!

All the strip clubs I have been to are laid out the same. There is a long dark hallway leading up to the entrance. Some have a cover charge you’ll pay when you show your ID and others do not. If they do not, they might have a two drink minimum, or maybe not. OG has a cover. Once paid and our IDs were checked, we moved into the club proper, also dark, though lighter than the hallway. Usually near the door is a bar, and a cashier. Past that is the main body of the club. A stage in the center of the room, with a varying number of poles for dancers. Flanking the stage will be front row seats. Further back from the stage, you will find tables and chairs, and still further back in the shadows, you will find booths. Sometimes, there are also back rooms and curtained off areas. I would avoid those for sure – no matter how nice the club is. But of course, to each her own.

Our first stop was for singles from the cashier – I got a lot. Second, my friend has found the perfect spot by the stage. At OG, there are 4 poles on the stage, but it looks like at any given time on this evening, only one will be in use. I kid you not, that within one dancer (a set of three songs) of us being there, every stripper used the pole right in front of us. And, do you know why? Because we were a group of lesbians. Respectful, well-behaved lesbians. And we were all tipping. So politely, too. The strippers must have sent up a flare. “OVER HERE! Kind Lesbians who won’t grope you. Dance over here, Ladies!”

A lovely, hard-working woman on a pole. Do you know how hard this is to do?

A lovely, hard-working woman on a pole. Do you know how hard this is to do?

And they did. And we didn’t. Lesbians must be the most respectful audience at a strip club. Why? We love women, so we pay attention. We love women, so we are respectful and super appreciative of: 1) how hard it is to move like that, 2) how difficult it is to stay looking like that, and 3) how gross it must be to dance for straight men all day. Sorry, guys. You must admit that strip clubs are not your best environment. You kinda come here to let loose, right? And, drop those gentlemanly manners of yours. Well, I don’t think that’s true for lesbians. At least not for me, and not for my friends.

So, we had lots of dancers focused on us. Stopping by, dancing close, of course, to encourage us to tip. The first dancer who came up to me asks me if I am single, and I said yes. My friends aren’t, so guess who got the most attention? This lesbian right here. How much fun was this! Beautiful women dancing for me, expecting nothing other than I pay attention and keep slipping ones into the various strings that they are wearing solely for this purpose. I’m not leaving here with a stripper. I’m not heading into any back room. Right? So, all I have to do is enjoy the femme attention. Oh, and keep paying for it with that big stack of ones in front of me. Done.

Now, as butch as I am, and as much as I like to pretend that I am a player (did I say pretend?), I am quite embarrassed to actually deliver the ones. I want to tip because I appreciate their work, but I am afraid to touch them because that seems so disrespectful. Thus, I have to be told that it is indeed ok to slide the dollar bill into the dancers’ g-string, or even better, they explain, into the special snappy string that they are wearing underneath the g-string. Yikes. [“Umm, where should I put it?” “Wherever you like, honey!”] After a few tries, I got it down. One dancer actually said to me when I verbalized my hesitation, “Honey! We are strippers, grab away. If you’ve got a one for me, slide it wherever you like!” I’m pretty sure I blushed – because, you know, I am just (not) that cool.

IMG_0315

As long as I’ve got my suit and tie…

So, there I am. All dressed up (three piece navy blue suit, dress shirt, bow tie, cufflinks, etc.). With good friends. Drinking. And, having a procession of young, attractive women with lithe bodies doting on us and me. Sigh. Some of you will think me a pig, I realize, and that’s ok. I had fun and if you don’t like it, so be it.

I finally had the nerve to get a lap dance. First time in my life.  The dancer had come over almost as soon as we sat down and started chatting me up. As you do. Anyway, later in the evening, I decided to go for it. We headed over to one of those couches – remember the ones that are just past the tables and more in shadows?

There was a lot, a lot, of chatting at the start, something I’m sure is not normal with male patrons. The stripper told me all about her family and why she was dancing. Then she shifted to the main event and started to dance kind of around, in front, and over me. It lasted longer than I thought it would, even though I bought a second dance.

When I went back to my friends, they peppered me with questions. How was it? Was it worth it? How do you feel? Blushing, I am pretty sure, I answered that it was nice. Much more intimate than I expected, but not gross. I got roundly teased and then we all turned our attention back to the dancers on stage. Those ones won’t tip themselves!

As we left the club, that dancer ran up to me and gave me a hug. She was topless as she had just left the patron (male, natch) that she was with and came to say goodbye to us. I guess we left an impression on her and others. What with being polite, respectful, and good tippers. Plus, we stood out. A group of very tall lesbians, including a few Butches. Anyway, I was proud of our group, but I suspect that this would be the case with any posse of lesbos. We are just so different in this environment from our male counterparts, and these, dancers, erm, strippers (“Honey!”) appreciated us – or maybe just our ones. :o)

It’s very butch to hit a strip club, and even more butch to make sure you tip well and treat the dancers like angels (such a hard job…). Be Butch.


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