Photos by Melissa Groth, Words by Jenn Tisdale
This show uses color coded rubber bands to separate the “I didn’t pay that much but I need to see some semi-nude men,” from the “I did pay a lot but I mostly got an area to myself,” gals. It makes sense. The show caters to folks who have money. The more money you have, the more perks (weird lap dance in front of everyone) you get. Because we were press so had our own passes and our own area but did not come prepared. How do you even prepare for a night like this? If your suggestion is a fistful of dollars, well Clint Eastwood, you’d be wrong. The average acceptable underwear tip is $5 and above. Do you know how much laundry I can do for $5? A lot. I can launder a fairly decent amount with $5. When you’re on a budget you’re always aware of laundry and quarters. Quarters are your God now.
Malmaison is not a strip club. Chairs were squeezed into every possible area. I felt sorry for some of the spots/chairs. They almost seemed like an afterthought, “Yeah, just put one right there, no one will notice.” Of course the chair layout was based entirely on selling seats, and whew boy did they sell seats. Actual seats, as in if you brought a friend it will still look like you came alone. You keep turning around to your friend to prove you’re not by yourself, but you are alone.
I wore my best Target dress and paired it with my favorite Forever 21 purse. I even brought out the big guns and put on my most comfortable Payless high heeled shoes (that’s right, tonight this little lady was going to be 5’9″ not 5’7″).
From the moment we entered we were treated like royalty. I don’t mean we were forced to marry our own cousins, we were asked how we are, if we needed anything, etc…
This is their job. Before you write this off as some cheesy stripper show, heed these words. The guys are constantly working, chatting it up with every lady. They make sure they establish a connection before gyrating in your face. It makes sense. It’s pretty difficult to introduce yourself mid lap dance. Since we were sitting in the VIP section (a single couch roped off from the rest of the seats, as if we had Ebola and we were being quarantined), performers would wander over to us. It was clear this was their job. There really is no organic way to strike up a conversation in this scenario so we dove right in.
We began with the man who co-ran the whole shebang, Joseph J. Nunn (real name), aka J.J. McGraw (not real name). He was friendly, comfortable with sharing things about himself, and of course was wearing a cowboy hat…inside…at night.
BYT: For the record I skipped watching the Republican Presidential debate tonight to come here, though I did DVR it.
J.J. McGraw: I know Donald Trump.
How do you know Donald Trump?
My mothers name is Elizabeth Ann Bryant and my name is Joseph Jennings Nunn and my mother was married to Joseph Kline who was in the presidential category way way way back in the day, and long story short, my mother has kept in contact with all the people that, for the past 25-30 years, that have ran for presidency and everything else, and just so happens to be that my mothers best friend is friends with Donald Trump’s people. My mother has spoken to Donald Trump at least ten times in the last year, not that big a deal to some people, but it’s a big deal to me. She tells him, “My son owns a Chippendale male revue show in Las Vegas called Buns & Bowties, the number one male revue show in the world, what do you think about that?”
Did he ask if any of you were immigrants?
Never asked if any of us were immigrants, I cannot lie. Never asked if we were immigrants because we’re all Americans, but anyways, Donald J. Trump is friends with my mamma when it comes to eight to ten times a year speaking. So if she emails him, he’ll email her back. Or call her up on the phone a few times in the last year. And that’s that. My mother supports him and I support him, not for what he says, or for what he says he’s gonna do, but the whole simple fact that he pays for his whole campaign, and honestly, Donald Trump if you’re listening, I know what you’re doing! You’re causing animosity and craziness around the whole world for one reason.
He’s a racist prick?
I can’t say that. I did not say that by the way. Whatever she’s saying, I did not say that. So anyways, my mother and him speak a few times a year and that is true and I must say that because I am who I am.
Do you know his favorite color?
I don’t care what his favorite color is. His favorite color is….
Well, it certainly isn’t black.
I think any man that has enough money to run, just like Bill Gates, could run. Just like Steve Jobs, could have ran. Just like any man who has that much money could run, I wish I could run because I would be fair. I’m the man that makes $200 – 500,000 a year and I’ve seen it, I’ve done it, I’ve walked the walk, talked the talk. Done it all world wide with Chippendale’s, so I would be fair. I love women. I love equality.
If you were running for president what would be your platform?
If I was running for presidency, Joseph Jennings Nunn, from Chippendale’s Buns & Bowties the male revue from Las Vegas…
We got it.
I know you do. Honestly, what I would focus on would be, I was raised in a trailer, not that that matters, I wasn’t raised in a rich family with a platinum spoon in my mouth, like some of my friends in the Hamptons, or Vegas, or South Beach, Miami. So, it’s kind of like one of those answers where you’re in the Miss America pageant, “What would you do to change the world?” A. I cannot change the world. B. I cannot change the world. C. I cannot change the world. But, I believe in peoples rights. I believe in what women do and what women… the exact words I’m looking for here, now this is being recorded, of course…
It is pro-choice, but what I’m saying is this, I believe that Suzy and Kelly [gesturing towards us] are equal to Joseph and I believe that every man, woman, and child is equal to each other. So here’s what I’m saying, we should all have the same rights as each other. It doesn’t matter if you’re from Guatemala or Japan or China. It matters if we’re all human beings. We’re all raised on this planet as one or another individual, male or female. So anyways, all I’m saying is that everybody is equal and we should all be looked at the same.
Who would you pick for your Vice President? Who would be your running mate?
You and you.
Don’t say that. Would it be Donald Trump?
No. It would not be Donald Trump… Somebody that has experience. I would say an ex-presidents wife.
And I really would… No.
Good ol’ Hillary?
Hillary Clinton. Now watch this, P.S. for the record I have not voted in 15 years.
Have you paid your taxes?
Yes, I have paid my taxes. I’m in the upper echelon of paying taxes. I’m in the 33 and up percentage… I don’t make a point of it because I don’t think my vote counts. I know it sounds wrong, it does sound wrong, but I believe in one thing, if you can make it happen, and you can make it happen, and I can make it happen there’s three of us right here in this conversation, whoever’s listening, we can’t make it happen. Us three. Now if we had 3,000 others of us, we could make it happen right?
Guess, what, I don’t believe in that either.
Last question, what would be your first bill as president?
My first bill would be a million dollar bill.
Oh, I’m sorry. Because of the Chippendale’s show, we take ones, fives, tens, twenties, fifties, and hundreds, but if there was a bill, it would be a million dollar bill and I would like one tonight.