And so there follow several months where I dance at the same time every week in a tiny room (accessible from an even tinier dressing room, where I smoke roll-ups with the Bada Bing pole dancer and put a lot of make up on), wearing the same dress, which I do not take off and which is entirely unrevealing, to the same song, which does not exist but which can best be described as a cross between Standing In the Way of Control and No More The Fool. I do not use the pole on principle, I am no better a dancer in my dreams than I am in real life (well, maybe a bit), and I get paid in cash that the audience gives to the landlady because there is nowhere in my outfit to stick it.
And I never get busted. This is my secret life until there is a Christmas break, when the landlady is kind of vague about what day she's opening up again. But I pride myself on my reliability, so I am walking round town looking for the alleyway that the bar is down with my dress in a plastic bag, getting a bit panicky because I can't find it and I need to get my make up on before I am on at 9.30. Then I bump into Ex-Schoolmate R and Ex-Housemate S. We have a conversation about the ethics of dancing in bars for money, and then I say I have something to tell them and I'll be back in half an hour.
When I find the bar it has children in it, and I wonder about the ethics of this as well. Then I realise it is under new management, and has in fact turned into a subterranean Chinese children's party venue. It now echoes like a swimming pool and there is lots of screaming.
I feel that I should be pissed off with the landlady for not telling me, but I am secretly relieved that I have got out of the dancing in a bar for money game without letting anyone down. I knew it wasn't really for me.