"i got caught being a real person."

so i'm sitting at the library bar with ruby, having a bite to eat and a drink at the beginning of our shift. this is customary behavior for my friends and me--it's nice to take a moment to transition out of "real person" mode and into our stripper personae. at this point, we've undergone most of our transition already--we've showered, driven to work, fixed our hair and makeup, donned our costumes--but beyond those physical transformations, there are psychological steps to be taken, and sitting at the bar for a while can help ease that process. on this particular evening we're talking about our tendencies within romantic relationships: are we pursuers or pursuees? what aspects of those roles are turn-ons or turn-offs? what makes us lose interest quickly, what keeps us coming back for more?

suddenly, a (somewhat former) regular customer of mine, jim, walks up. i stopped sitting with him a while ago because he got too pushy, and it just stopped being worth the money he paid me. he interrupts our conversation about boyfriends to blurt out, "haven't seen you in a while, how are you and your boyfriend doing?" sigh. we've been through this before, and for some reason i'm not feeling very open to having this discussion, again--most likely due to the nature of the conversation he's interrupted. "we broke up four months ago, jim, and that's the first thing you said to me the last time i saw you, and i'd really appreciate it if you'd stop asking me about that." he goes, "well okay fine, i'll go away." i say, "you don't have to go away, i just don't want to talk about my ex boyfriend anymore. i'm trying really hard to get over it, and having you ask me about it doesn't help."

either he's drunk, or he's just not getting the hint, or both, because he presses me further--"well, what happened?" ugh. in what universe is this appropriate small talk? i snap at him, "look, i don't really want to talk about it. it was really awful, and it'd be great if i didn't have to explain that to you every time i saw you." (seriously, this is the first thing he's said to me, every time he's seen me, in the last several months. either it's the first thing he can think of to talk to me about, or he doesn't remember previous conversations. either way, it's got to stop, because i wasn't lying when i said it was awful, and i REALLY don't to be reminded of my newly-acquired emotional baggage while i'm trying to undergo a smooth transition into stripper mode). dejected, he sulks off. i don't try and stop him. i turn to ruby and say, "oops. i got caught being a real person. my bad."

the next time i see jim, a month later, he asks me the same thing. he just doesn't remember previous conversations. i guess he's just a drunk, and i'm going to have to keep that in mind while pretending to not be a real person around him in the future. i suppose that's what i deserve for thinking i had a candid enough relationship with a regular to talk about aspects of my "real" life.

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