Tonight came at the right time. I needed a boost in self confidence and positivity, and wow did I get both. The two “StripXpertease erotic dance classes done at Ripley-Grier Studios in Manhattan not only picked me up, it put me on Pluto.
I walked to my car as if on a Segway, quickly, effortlessly, and even with my coat open in the cold December air, I felt warm. I was so up, so exhilarated, that during the ride home I was singing along with Marv Johnson’s 1959 hit “You’ve Got What It Takes For Me.”
I was smiling so much as my car crawled along in traffic that several people gave me the thumbs up. Can you hear the song in your head with these opening lyrics. I still hear the song in my head as I am at home typing this essay:
“You don't drive a big fast car
You don't look like a movie star
And on your money we won't get far
But baby, you got what it takes (yeah, yeah)
To satisfy (yeah, yeah)
You got what it takes to set my soul on fire
You got what it takes for me
Now, you don't live in a beautiful place
And you don't dress in the best of taste
And nature didn't give you such a beautiful face
But baby, you got what it takes (yeah, yeah) . . . . “
During the drive home I was imagining some guy singing the song to me, uplifted by me, turned on by me, wanting to be with me. To enjoy me and all my attributes. And much more than just the physical. The emotional and even the spiritual me. I usually think of myself as preferring women to be intimate with, but over the last few months I’ve been fantasizing about being with men more.
Would I be better appreciated? Who knows.
The dance lessons were definitely stimulated from some of these thoughts. Dancing erotically looking at myself in the mirror put me in the mood of being pursued, of being exalted by a man. Maybe several.
Sitting behind the wheel with the radio off, I flashed back to the scene in Studio Room 16-0 -- when the amazing instructor, Jillian, turned on the red string floor lights and turned off the brighter overhead lights.
Five students (including me) began gyrating to the lush music, doing our recap of the moves we had just learned. I think the song playing was a female version (Luna?) of Nirvana’s “Come As You Are” and it was seductive. I love the song and its message and now hearing it sung by a woman made it even more meaningful to me.
Jillian called out “lotion” and we caressed ourselves -- as if applying lotion -- and then “predator” and we put on the sexy face we had practiced in the mirror., chin a little down, big eyes, sly come-hither smile. When we did a full run-through with the dimmed lighting, I was enthralled by himself in the wall mirror eight feet in front of me. It felt good that the other girls appeared as if they were also turning themselves on also.
I was so impressed that I took the next class on ‘floor work’ that same night, instructed also by Jillian, doing walking and wall work too. I envisioned
myself dancing as a paid erotic dancer in a club somewhere with several men, close up, watching me pulsate and enjoying seeing me touch myself, doing the “Robert” move, turning my rear and thighs in a type of figure eight imagined to be drawn as if paint was dripping from my hips.
Jillian and Kimberly, the founder who was in the room, are enthusiastic and the courses are well constructed and varied to accommodate different levels and how students can progress in their skills. Some want to use the skills to turn on their partners, or to build their own self esteem. Others may want to use the dance skills professionally. I was so swept up into the feeling that I may actually pursue the possibility of becoming a dancer in a club. I realize I’m twice the age of the current dancers, and for sure I don’t have the slender tight body or pretty face, but I do feel attractive and sexy and I think I exude an inviting karma, quite frankly, when I am in flow, when performing high-octane.
I’ve experienced this exhilarating feeling on only a few occasions. One time in the Bahamas I kicked my fear of heights by parasailing. Another time was when I completed a music-related invention and watched the prototype work, later to skip down Madison Avenue kicking my heels. Another, when at a toy store I saw a fresh stack of a board game my friend Larry and I developed that won an award. Or when I danced on the Edelweiss bar 30 years ago and hung by the chain attached to the ceiling. Or performing my song Baby Boomer Blues at Pennys Open Mic on St. Marks Place, with the house band, and Gary Fierer backing me and improving the song to an exciting new height. Or as a go-go dancer, weekend after weekend, in an underground club someplace in Manhattan, for which the name surprisingly escapes me. Or running drinks at the Numero Uno club, another of Dino’s tranny places. Or the first runway fashion show I did and people applauding my cute skirt. Or singing my song “I Want To Be A Cute Girl” at a major event in Long Island, getting applause from over 300 people. Or modeling in a T Project, with photos and videos trained on me, with the results being shown at a celebratory culminating event. Or when my daughter Kelly was born on Easter morning thirty years ago, or watching her play her own song “Moonlight Lullaby” to an audience of over 100 at the age of 10. Or earning a $40,000 commission on one sale to pay off accumulated debt. Or being with my whole family together on Christmas, laughing with each other. I realize there are way more than ten super moments. Yeah, life’s been good. But this night of erotic dance lessons ranks right up there.
Funny thing that I was caressing myself in a mirror within one hour of meeting with my parish priest and preparing for prayer healings, and I did not feel any incongruity of the two activities. In fact, I felt that this night was an answer to a prayer for a breakthrough in a new path on making extra money to get through a difficult cash crunch until I sell my parents’ home. (My mother passed away two months ago, my father three years ago, and I need to sell the house and pay off debts.)
I’m so glad I started living full-time as a female on 1/1/11. It’s still is paying dividends, and tonight's dance classes got me thinking of going further. Next week I start my hormone therapy through Callen-Lorde, the organization that helps transgender women progress in their transition.
The erotic dance classes could be a fitting complement to my enhanced transition. I’m feeling younger, outside and inside, almost like a brand new life, picking up the loose ends of 30 years ago and now taking them forward as my more-feminized me. The photo in this essay isn’t the clearest, but it shows you my smile at a recent transgender party a friend of mine Elizabeth hosted.
After I wrote this essay, and I was lying in bed thinking, I also reflected on how new activities, as minor and unplanned as two dance classes, could cause such an inspiring feeling and perhaps augment a new direction, even helping to pay a few bills as a bonus.
And it was pretty cool that when I told my spouse about it and gave her a sample of my moves; she even said she was happy for me. Wow. Now with the help of Jillian and Kimberly, I’m going to become an awesome part-time sexy dancer and hopefully work a few nights per week in a club somewhere with pulsating music and gyrating bodies, mine included. Then perhaps I can advance to stripping, especially after my body becomes more feminine through hormones and tighter from dancing. Is burlesque or musicals in my future?. Who knows. Maybe this dance path is one of the solutions, although temporary, it’s just been a catalyst to raise my spirits up and keep me moving forward; in the process also furthering my talents and entertainment skills, paths, enjoying people and new paths, having fun, and smiling as I go.