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So I’m reading Memoirs of a Geisha and all of a sudden I start thinking, “Gee, if it wasn’t for the tea ceremonies, these chicks would all be…”

I mean, Geishas auction off their virginity to the highest bidder and their main goal is to become the kept woman or mistress of a wealthy danna-or male benefactor. And yet, Geishas are treated with the utmost respect (or so I’ve read) in Japan and they definitely get big props here in the United States.

So, like I said, I started thinking. I wondered what would be the equivalent of a Geisha here in America. Bypassing the obvious, I settled on “stripper”.

Now, I’ve noticed that the reaction on the mentioning of strippers varies from race to race. If you mention strippers around white people, there’s almost always a giddy excitement among the men and a borderline envy of the physical requirements among the women. But if you mention strippers around Black people, the reaction swings between the extremes of lurid enthusiasm and outright contempt-among both sexes.

I wonder why that is.

Chris Rock is one of the top two or three comedians of all-time and when he joked that his sole responsibility as the father of a daughter was to “keep her off the pole” there was so much I KNOW that’s right! laughter going on in the place that you would have sworn that the pole was the worst thing that could happen to a young woman. It was like “crackhead”, “convict” and “ho on a stroll” had never even occurred to the audience as alternatives.

And props to the young Black stripper that came up with the excuse (or explanation) that she was only stripping to pay for school-being in school is to most older Black people more important than the results of schooling. This suggestion had the same paradoxical effect on the Black psyche as the idea of a “holy war”.

Personally, I never liked strip clubs that much because the thought of going to one always struck me as being similar to starving and going to a restaurant with pockets full of cash, then paying just to smell the food.

But I could be wrong. What do you think?