some girls-jillian lauren

“do you know the difference between males and females?”
“females have babies and can’t run very fast”
“um, ok-that’s interesting, what’s a more basic distinction?”
“males can fight and females can’t”

sigh. the 7-year-old prophet has revealed volumes. i’ve been hyperaware of men leering out of cars and hanging around verbally harassing women-i suppose this is where the socialization of gender works on many platforms to inform life outside the library, literally and literally. i’ve just noticed the rash of books that i’ve read as of late that involve dance, either literally or figuratively, to suggest a gateway or substitute for sex, or a lack thereof. a physical performance associated with sexuality because it is transmitted via the medium of human bodies, and the terrain delicate and vulnerable to betrayal due to its unruly nature. jillian lauren and cody diablo do not report stories of violence from clients, but that may be the nature of the settings of their work. a sub-theme of the lincoln lawyer (my choice for last night to accompany my homemade chicken soup post-art show and couch-sleeping dogsit), intended or otherwise, is the interlacing of money and power and sexwork.

“I left New York for San Francisco soon after I returned from Brunei, and I never did make it back. Leave New York and it leaves you behind so quickly. New York is like the lover you leave, the one who still someone retains the upper hand for the rest of your life. When you pass him on the street, you will recognize him before he recognizes you. You will have to decide whether or not to call out, It’s me. It’s Jill. You will read his name in the paper and your body will remember.
You will watch on television as thick pillars of black smoke rise into the air and you will remember New York, like someone just ran a plane into your heart. But New York, even at its moment of greatest pain, will not remember you. And though I like my view so much better since I left, it sometimes still smarts when I realize I’ve been forgotten.” (338)

when we make it to the otherside, that’s when we’ll settle up the score.

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3 thoughts on “some girls-jillian lauren

  1. tendu:

    “He didn’t need to complete the thought. Ballerinas were born swans. I could see as well as anyone that I was a duck. I would have to learn to take solace in the fact that water ran off my back.” (334)

    “I watched the ballerinas glow blue-white in the spotlights and ached to be where they were. I watched the ballerinas and imagined that I understood why my birth mother and given me up for adoption. You had to lose something to be that light. It was reason enough to give your baby away-you could always be that luminous, that free.” (8)

    “I had been a good stripper-a natural, everyone always told me. I was never the prettiest or the girl with the best body, but I had that something that made people want to look at me. More important, I had that something that makes people feel seen themselves. Lonely guys couldn’t get enough of it. I was easy for me; it was acting, which was my thing, after all. And I suspected that I was going to be the same way as a call girl. A natural.” (48)

  2. act too:

    “The thing I miss most now about doing theater isn’t the applause. It’s the experience I have onstage of being completely present. For me, something about the limited world, the adrenaline, and the lights banishes any sense of self-consciousness. My mind empties out, my body grows balanced, and my heart opens. I’ve never been a big method actor, thinking of starving children or bleeding baby seals or my dead grandmother in order to make myself cry. What I love about performing is that when I’m doing it well, I don’t think at all.” (291)

    “This is the Faustian bargain for many women who make their bodies their livelihood. Your body will be worshipped by others but hated by you. It will give others pleasure but it will give you only pain.” (231)

    “The pictures we carry, the frames we gladly add to the weight of our luggage, are of the people we trust to love us no matter what.” (131)

    “There was something real but not real about Leanne. I instinctively believed she loved him but I also knew an actress when I heard one. We actresses write terrible dialogue for ourselves.” (111)

    “I longed for a magic pill to soothe the restlessness that prickled constantly under my skin. I’m not sure what made me think I’d find it in Brunei, but I wouldn’t be the first person who hoped to step off a plane on the other side of the world and discover their true self standing there waiting for them.” (82)

  3. money.power.sex.magik:

    “Power tasted like an oyster, like I’d swallowed the sea, all its memories and calm and rot and brutality. It tasted like an oyster I ate once as a kid, an oyster still flinching with life.” (201)

    “I placed my bets on all the wrong horses. I loved only the ones who left me with a belly full of longing. At love, I was a jackass. But they say the ultimate tattoo is the one that changes the jackass into a zebra. I hoped for nothing less. My first tattoo is a big tattoo, a life-changing tattoo. It’s a purple snake spine that spirals out from my navel and across my whole stomach, blossoming into a garden of flowers that crawls down my left thigh and decorates my entire pussy with thorny monster teeth. You can now find photographs of my tattoo in a bunch of tattoo books.
    Before we started, Guy sagely tried to steer me away from the idea of a pussy tattoo.” (270)

    “Sex work has many pitfalls, and this is one of them. It’s the reason that the stripper putting herself through school so often turns out to be a myth. Sure, a lot of strippers start out putting themselves through school, but school starts to lose its appeal pretty quickly. Your sociology degree doesn’t qualify you for an entry-level job that can even come close to making you the kind of immediate cash with which you walk out of a club.” (298-9)

    “Andy generally complied with my wishes without protest. It was a good trick he had. He made people feel like they were in control, but actually he was getting them to take care of everything for him. Sure, I could decorate the place any way I wanted, but the catch was I had to do it all myself. That way when things went wrong, like with the couch, it was never Andy’s fault.” (255)

    “But Fiona was older than I was. I had no idea what a dollar meant, thought nothing of eating peanut butter straight from the jar for lunch and Pop-Tarts from the box for dinner. I hadn’t really cared that I was poor, so getting rich for doing nothing didn’t seem like a big deal.” (195)

    “Like many true great lovers of women, Robin looked at you a certain way and you were suddenly lovely. Women will overlook all manner of philandering and cruelty, will crush their logic under a glass heel, if a man can make them feel they belong on a pedestal in the Louvre.” (123)

    “That night Robin was eager to know if Martin had liked me. He seemed like a little boy looking for his father’s approval. Robin was always famished behind the eyes. It was the kind of hunger you could never really feed, the kind that keeps you up until five a.m. every night, the kind that drives you to fuck girl after girl, to buy Maserati after Maserati.” (206)

    “People who need everyone to love them are exponentially more dangerous than people who are content merely with power and money. You have to go way further to make them happy.” (216)

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