Sunny Days in DC

Jack of All Trades, Master of 3-ish.

Is It Still Prostitution If We Don’t Screw?

When my guy and I moved to Ireland, one of the terms and conditions was that if he was going to restart his life, so would I. That meant writing and giving a shot at burlesque. Not like a, “sure, lemme take a class here and there,” but legit performance.

Have I written about this before? I can’t tell. It’s late and I’m trying to do a brain purge so I can finally go to sleep.

But it occurred to me: burlesque is dancing, a strip tease, for an audience. What’s really the difference between that and pornography? Or art, for that matter. I’m not slut shaming, I’m asking a legitimate question. When people go to see Dita von Teese, many go for the performance, for her costumes, for the excitement of seeing someone famous… but she GOT famous because of lust… how is performing on a stage by riding a giant pink mechanical bull any different than filming a porno? You’re not having sex with the audience in either case, and in either case you have no control what your audience takes from the show. Either way, the come back for the sexual high.

Part of me is asking this because if I DO really want to get serious about this, then eventually photos will be taken and they’ll find their way to the internet. So I have this dilemma: what do I say to my son when he gets old enough to see photos of mommy stripping? How do I tell him that sex isn’t a game, when there I am, playing by my own rules? How would I feel if he told me he wanted to be in porno, and what could I say to him as someone who would have done burlesque?

The flip side of this is, of course, you can’t live your life trying not to offend anyone, trying to be what you think others MIGHT want. Well, you can. Just ask me; I’ve done it for years. But eventually, you make a choice, even if you do so by NOT choosing one path. In school, I chose NOT to study writing because I was worried I wouldn’t make any money and be poor. Well kids, over the past three years, I’ve been about as close to that as I ever want to get… so what have I gained by following what I thought would be the easier path? Maybe the lesson *is* to leap, and hope that a net will appear. Maybe there is no net, and the illusion is that there ever was to begin with.

Eventually, I will have to justify my decisions to my son, whether that’s to say, “I chose security, stability, and to swim with the rest of the fish,” or, “I chose me. And it wasn’t a popular decision, and maybe I chose it later in life than some others, but I did it. So your lesson is that you can make a choice, realize it’s not what you want, and decide a new path.” Maybe that’s what I tell him, and hope that he understands. Who knows? Maybe one day, when he’s older, he’ll read this blog post and realize that one of the hardest decisions I ever had to make, was figuring out whether to take a shot at living my passion, or crush myself in hopes of stability.

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My very first Irish panic attack: tastes like ‘Merica!

Of the settlement money I received when my lawsuit ended, I was supposed to save HALF for taxes, just in case. That shouldn’t have been hard for a normal fucking person, but my husband and I had just decided to move to a country in recession because life hates when things go easily for me. This morning, the husband and I looked at our bank account, and realized we had 1/4 of the settlement left.

Gentle readers, this takes us back to where I was when I first started writing this blog. Jobless. At home. Watching our bank accounts dwindle. It’s all very Circle of Life.

So now we get to the crux of it. When I first moved over here with my husband, I said that I would stay as long as financially possible. It’s been a month. I don’t know whether I should stay on and continue to look for a job, or move back to the States and try from there. What I do know is that we can’t sustain my being unemployed much longer.

The other day, I told my friend that I was giving this whole deal until October. If I haven’t found a job by then, I told her, I’ll have to move back. She felt I should extend my search time frame and cut myself some slack. But for those of us who have been unemployed and struggled not for weeks, not for months, but struggled for YEARS to get back on our feet and put a roof over the heads of our children, it’s not about just being proud of the progress you’ve made on the SEARCH. I need a JOB. I need money. I need to be able to pay the bills and get out of the house and not feel like I’m circling the drain AGAIN.

I don’t know, you guys. Do I stay? Do I go? But how much longer can we keep this up? How many more posts are y’all willing to read about my being unemployed, again? But I can’t complain too much; I agreed to move here… let’s see what my next move will be.

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