Oh my god – John Canton died last night – he had a heart attack – this is the end of the club – Shirley says they’ll keep it open but mark my words – in six months it’ll be closed down.
Oh what a wonderful man he was. Nothing will ever be the same.
John Canton’s funeral was yesterday. It was in this little Presbyterian Church in Lewiston – very plain & austere – Teddy & I dressed conservatively – since we know how to dress – but everyone else from the club was dressed like they were going to a Prince concert. They looked so terribly out of place in that sober church that I had trouble not laughing. There was a lunch afterward but none of us from The Canteen were invited. We went to Murphy’s & had a few drinks – I wanted to stay longer of course – but Teddy said we had to leave. We stopped at John Fleury’s & picked up an 8-ball. Jesse came over to split it with us & stayed half the night, partying.
Friday night – Valentine’s day – was Oralie’s birthday – I wasn’t working – none of us were – the week & two weeks before were busy with stags since Valentine’s Day is popular as a wedding date but it’s not as a stag party date. Oralie wanted all of us to go out partying with her – she wanted to hit that new nightclub The Inferno out on Walden Avenue – it used to be Uncle Sam’s – I’m not into large nightclubs but if that’s where she wanted to go, that’s where she wanted to go.
I didn’t want any snazzy clothes to wear but it really didn’t matter since it was brutally cold anyway. I wore my usual – tight jeans, my boots, a sheer embroidered gypsy top, all my jewelry & my heavy tweed old lady coat over it – this coat is ugly as fuck but it’s super warm & I don’t care particularly what I look like as long as I’m warm. I have a black wool babushka that I wear over my head & lots of times, when I arrive at stags, guys are like – what the fuck – until I take the scarf & the coat off & they see the sexy babe underneath.
Teddy gave me a hit of acid to do & an 8-ball of coke to divide & sell to the girls before we went out. That way, I would have a gram of my own to party with that wouldn’t cost me anything & plenty of cash for drinks. Jesse was over, buying coke for his weekend – as usual – & he gave me a ride to Murphy’s – where we were all meeting – on his way back to his place. I asked him in for a drink but he said no. “I know Doreen’s got a special Valentine’s meal for me,” he told me. “Isn’t that nice,” I replied. “She’s trying,” he said almost pleadingly. I shrugged. “I’m happy for you,” & I didn’t know if I was lying or not.
At the bar, I sold grams to Oralie, Gigi & Mo. I dropped acid with my drink – I was drinking vodka gimlets. Oralie & Gigi had LSD too – I don’t know where they got theirs or what kind it was. But they had already dropped & were getting off before we left Murphy’s. Laura Lee was with us but she was the designated driver. “One of us has got to stay sober!” she said. “Get us all back here in one piece!”
We were in Laura Lee’s Toyota Tercel Hatchback – I got to ride in the back – all scrunched up, lying on my back – & I got off back there – looking at the streetlights going by – it was really cool – probably the best part of the night, actually. I was tripping balls at the Inferno – honestly I don’t remember a whole lot about that place. Just that it was noisy & bright & there were balloons falling & ribbons & sparklers – it was too much – I had to turn inward – stop paying attention. It helped when Oralie asked me to dance & we were on the dance floor for a long long time – I love dancing when I’m tripping – totally part of the music & the scene & the beat & the lights.
We were on the second floor, looking down on the dance floor & Gigi showed up with some dude hanging all over her. She was wearing a shiny green dress that Nicola had made for her & it was tight & low-cut & the dude obviously couldn’t get enough of her enormous breasts. I sat there in my seat & looked at her & thought that she looked like a Rubins pin-up. Really surreal & beautiful.
Oralie was going on about a tattoo she had on her hip – a bleeding heart pierced by three swords – something to do with being born on Valentine’s day – I couldn’t follow it – but the dude wanted to see it so she pulled up her skirt – she was wearing her red leather mini skirt & a matching jacket & white boots – & showed it to the dude. So he turned to Gigi & said, “What do you have to show me?” Naturally she pulls open her dress – which it was designed to do, of course – & shows him her giant tits. Then he turned to me. “What do you have to show me?”
I laughed. I stood up & was ready to drop my drawers & bend over & moon him – just to be a good sport – but then his wife/girlfriend/whoever she was came up & he took off & I didn’t have to. We all laughed & went down to dance again.
It was getting late & the tunes were all slow numbers for all the happy Valentine couples so Oralie wanted to leave & hit some other bars & I was all for that. We collected Mo & Laura Lee but couldn’t find Gigi. Oralie started to giggle. “I bet she’s with that dude in his limo! She can’t resist making a few dollars!” We decided to go out to the car & wait for her. “She’ll figure out where we are.”
As we were leaving the club, the wife/girlfriend/whoever came up & accosted me for “dropping” my pants in front of her “husband” – so I guess she was his wife. I said, “I never dropped my pants” but she insisted, “Oh yes you did, he said you did, he said all of you showed him your best parts & you showed him your pussy!” So I told her, “Your husband is a liar.” She started screaming at me & went to pull my hair – really! – & I ducked but something about her clicked – & I looked at her again. & then it came to me. We used to work together – years ago – when I worked at Jenss. Her name is Remi & she was engaged at the time – this must be the guy she married – I remember it wasn’t a particularly happy engagement – she was always wondering where he was – he was that kind of dude.
I said, “Remi, don’t you remember me? I’m Cori, we used to work together at Jenss.”
“Cori – you slut – you whore! You showed your pussy to my husband!”
I laughed. “I’m a slut! I’m a whore! Well – you’re a fool! While you’re wasting your time screaming at me here, your ever-loving husband is getting a blowjob from my friend Gigi! So why don’t you go scream at her? Or better yet – scream at him?”
By then, there was a crowd around us. Oralie was pushing me out the door & Remi was screaming at both of us & then – here comes Gigi, all proud of herself – & Remi started in on her – so we all ran across the parking lot to the car & piled in – laughing as hard as we could. Gigi pulled out $100 – I’m sure she got more off the dude – & said “The next bar, the drinks are on me!”
We bar-hopped the rest of the night. At Club Utica, there must have been a water main break earlier in the day because the entire street & even the sidewalks were covered in ice – I slipped & fell & so did Oralie – we were laughing so hard that we couldn’t get back up – & I had to crawl to the curb where I finally was able to get to my feet. We ended up having breakfast at Perkins on Delaware Avenue – it was 5 in the morning & the place was packed. I was so wasted that I accidentally walked out the fire exit & set off the fire alarm – oops! I got home as Teddy was leaving for work. I slept all day Saturday & even most of Sunday. I can’t say I was hungover – I was beyond hungover – exhausted is more like it.
I’m so depressed I can’t stand it. I miss him & I want him & I love him & I can’t stop. I’m completely helpless – I don’t know what to do – I know it’s over but I can’t get the memory of him out of my mind – I cream my jeans when I think about our making love – I remember every second – I can’t forget – I can’t forget –
I’m dying. I’m sick of staying at home – I want to go out drinking – I want to go shopping – anything to get this off my mind! Teddy’s sleeping on the couch – I can’t stand it! I can’t sleep! I slept all night!
Later. Feeling better & almost ashamed of what I wrote before – my awful moods. & I – Cori, happy Cori! With the best husband in the world! I mean – he loves me so well & understands so much – I mean, so what if he doesn’t fuck me! He loves me!
I showed up at work at the Canteen today & it was padlocked shut. I’m not surprised – John Canton’s son – Jack – has been running the club & he doesn’t know any more about running a strip club than my Aunt Louise. He’s a real estate lawyer. Like all lawyers, he thinks he can do anything as long as he delegates properly. He didn’t take into consideration that nobody wanted to work with his arrogant ass. Shirley could have run that club single-handedly but she wouldn’t lift a finger for him. I’ve been watching the destruction of the club since almost the day John Canton died. Bottles of liquor disappearing from the back room & even from behind the bar. Glasses & plates gone. Even the flatwear.
& there were hardly any customers left – the raising of the drinking age didn’t really affect us, since you always had to be 21 to get into a strip club in New York – but being able to drink at age 19 in the Ontario bars & all the new exotic dancing clubs up there – where they dance completely nude – has really cut into our clientele. The Canteen isn’t the only club that has closed in the last few years. I can name at least five clubs that have closed in the last five years – at least that. But ya know – it’s not just strip clubs, it’s everything. The rock’n’roll clubs are closing – times are changing.
I’ve been thinking of going to Canada to work. Teddy doesn’t want me to.
Tish is engaged. She’s marrying her college sweetheart – he’s was ROTC all through college so now he’s off doing special training for the Army – he’s a computer specialist – “military intelligence” being a misnomer as George Carlin would say. They’re getting married after the New Year. I wonder if I’ll be one of the brides maids? Or matrons, since I’m married. I’ve never been in a wedding. Except my own, of course.
Mom & Bob kicked Randy out of the house because of “tough love” – he’s 18 now & was working with a landscaping crew & I guess partying all the time so the A.A. couple of the year kicked him out! He’s living with Jesse & Doreen right now. Jesse is trying to get him into the union but right now he’s managed to get a spot on a local landscaping crew. He’s as tall as Jesse but with fairer hair & a much darker tan. He’s incredibly beautiful.
Busy with stags at the end of the year. The usual Christmas show. Corny but everyone loves it. A little Santa dress & hat & my red shoes & all the best music. I miss The Canteen but now I have so much more time for the law office & for dancing work. I am making more money than ever. But of course I am always broke. Amazing how that works.
I have been reading The Mists of Avalon. I love the turn on the King Arthur tale. But I also love the idea of an old religion that was supplanted by Christianity – it explains to much & makes everything so clear – why during the Reformation, the Protestants called the Roman Catholic religion “pagan” – because in many cases, it just took over its stories wholesale – I really want to learn more & read more about the old religion. The idea of a Goddess – I always was devoted to the Mother Mary – but the idea of a Goddess really appeals to me.