1. Air Dance: A lap or table dance where there’s very little contact between the dancer and customer—that is, a lot of air between them. The term is often used derogatorily by customers expecting or hoping for more physical contact.
2. American-style: A topless pool that caters primarily to men who want to see topless women, as opposed to catering to women who want to be topless. An American-style topless pool is characterized by loud modern music, a young crowd, and a party atmosphere. [See Overviews, re: Topless Pools.]
3. ANEI: Adjusted nipple entertainment index. [See Overviews, re: Topless Pools.]
4. Blind Lap: A lap dance from a dancer whom you haven’t seen perform on stage and whose body you haven’t gotten a good look at, because she approaches you from behind. Blind laps are generally considered a bad idea.
5. Chum the Waters: To drop lots of dollar bills onto a stage when first arriving at a strip club in order to get extra attention from dancers throughout the night.
6. CPN: Cost Per Nip, a statistical measure derived by dividing the Stripper-Grade Nipple Count (SGNC) by a topless pool’s admission fee. [See Overviews, re: Topless Pools.]
7. Discreet Billing: You may hear this term in a strip club that takes credit cards. It means that when your credit-card statement comes, whatever charges you incurred in that club don’t show up as having been billed by the strip club, but by some other business. For example, a club that serves food has a restaurant license, so it may have a DBA and bank account under a restaurant name—even though the restaurant name appears nowhere on the club’s marquee or in any of the advertising. Not all strip clubs have discreet billing, so don’t assume they do unless they tell you so. And, of course, you may still have some explaining to do when your wife wants to know how you managed to run up an $800 Visa charge at “Poncho’s Taco Villa.” That’s a lot of tacos.
8. Dork Detector: A person who works at the door of a popular entertainment facility (nightclub, pool, etc.), whose job it is to disallow entrance to customers who don’t fit the image of the type of customers the facility wants to attract.
9. European-style: A topless pool that caters primarily to women who want to swim and/or sunbathe topless. European-style pools are characterized by soft music and a relaxing atmosphere. [See Overviews, re: Topless Pools.]
10. Floor Work: A form of dance consisting of moves carried out while lying on a stage floor. Floor work is generally the sexiest part of a dancer’s routine, because the postures mimic erotic poses and movements in bed.
11. George: A generous tipper. Strippers see a good tipper walking into the club and say, “Here comes George.” It refers to Washington on the dollar bills they expect to soon be littering the stage.
12. GFE: A “girlfriend experience” — a term used by dancers to describe the service they offer guys who will pay to just sit and talk. [In the escort/call-girl biz, GFE also stands for girlfriend experience, but the meaning is quite different–it means she’s available for unprotected (no condom) sex and will engage in French kissing. Don’t expect that in a strip club!]
13. Go-Go: This term isn’t used much in Vegas. It’s fairly common on the East coast, especially in New Jersey in clubs where dancers cannot remove tops or bottoms. A go-go club features bikini dancing only. I use the term in this book for the few clubs that feature dancers in bikinis or lingerie.
14. G-string: A dancer’s string thong with nary more than a triangle of cloth for covering the genitalia.
15. House Fee: Same as “stage fee.”
16. K-Mart Crowd: Stripper slang for a roomful of customers who tip very little.
17. Lap Dance: A dance in which the dancer sits down on the customer’s lap and moves erotically. A lap dance lasts for one song (generally three minutes).
18. Line Fishing: A practice of some doormen at popular nightclubs in which they offer “cuts” to the front to customers willing to pay a fee.
19. Line Sliding: A practice of some customers at popular nightclubs in which they offer a tip to the doorman to cut in front of others.
20. Making it Rain: Throwing lots of dollars onto a stage for a dancer.
21. Mercy Tip: A tip for a dancer on stage simply because no one else has been tipping, usually due to a small crowd.
22. Mileage: A term used by lap-dance and VIP-room aficionados. High mileage means lots of physical contact with the dancer. Low mileage means very little or no physical contact.
23. NIM: Nipples in Motion. [See Overviews, re: Topless Pools.]
24. Nude: As the term implies, a dancer in a nude club takes off everything (or more often everything but her platform heels). In Las Vegas, only clubs that don’t serve alcohol allow nude dancing. (One club in North Las Vegas, the Palomino, is an exception to this rule.)
25. Off-Stage Fee: Dancers aren’t employees of a strip club. They’re independent contractors who pay a fee in order to work at the club. This fee is sometimes called the “stage fee.” Dancers who don’t want to dance on the stage (typically because they prefer to spend all their time doing lap dances and VIP-room shows that pay more) can pay the clubs an “off-stage fee,” so that they’re not called upon to dance on stage. The off-stage fee is higher than the stage fee. For example, at the former Penthouse Club, a dancer who didn’t want to dance on stage had to pay the club $50 more to work in the club than dancers who agreed to dance on stage. At Spearmint Rhino, a more popular club the off-stage fee was $75 more than the stage fee at that time.
26. Pole Work: A gymnastic routine performed on a brass or stainless steel pole mounted on the stage. Some dancers have developed pole work to an art form.
27. Private Show: Some clubs have private rooms where customers can have a one-on-one dance, usually at a higher price than a lap dance out on the main floor or in the regular VIP room. Like VIP-room dances, private shows are sold for specific time periods, such as 30 minutes for $300, and often require that a customer pay a specified bar tab or purchase a bottle of champagne or other high-end liquor in addition to the room charge. Sometimes this term is used interchangeably with VIP-room dances in clubs where no rooms are more private than the VIP room.
28. Rail: A seat “on the rail” is a seat at the edge of the stage where you can see the stage dancers close up and tip them for extra attention. The term comes from the low brass railing that many strip clubs have around the stage perimeter. (Many older strip clubs around the U.S. are named “The Brass Rail.”) Quite a few Las Vegas strip clubs still have the traditional brass rail around the stage. But whether or not the stage has a rail, if you sit directly adjacent to the stage, you’re “on the rail.” It’s a breach of strip-club etiquette to occupy a rail seat without tipping the dancers.
29. RC: Raincoater. A derogatory term used by strippers for any customer who strikes them as deviant or weird.
30. RNC: Raw Nipple Count. [See Overviews, re: Topless Pools.]
31. SGNC: Stripper-Grade Nipple Count. [See Overviews, re: Topless Pools.]
32. Shower Show: A few clubs in Vegas have showers where a customer can pay to watch a dancer get wet. Shower shows became popular in Canadian strip clubs about 20 years ago and have since entered many U.S. clubs.
33. Silicone: I generally use the term silicone to denote breast enhancement, though silicone was prohibited by law for more than 10 years. During this period, a saline solution was used for boob jobs, as it was considered safer. A couple years ago, however, the FDA removed the prohibition against silicone inserts for breast augmentation, so silicone has become the standard again. There’s an argument that silicone inserts create a more natural looking (and moving) breast. A boob job generally costs $1,500 to $5,000. Most dancers insist that a boob job not only increases their tips, but gets them work in many of the higher-end clubs where big breasts reign supreme.
34. Spiff: A “commission” a cabbie receives from a club for delivering customers. A spiff is the reason cabbies in Vegas might not recommend the “best” clubs to tourists, in favor of recommending the clubs that pay them the most.
35. SPW: Statistical Probability of Wood. A measure for comparing the sexiness of the stage shows in strip clubs. [See full explanation in my Strip Club Ratings Guide.]
36. Stage Fee: In most U.S. strip clubs, including all the clubs in Las Vegas, dancers pay a stage fee to work in the club. Dancers are considered private contractors, rather than employees of the strip clubs. Stage fees vary from club to club, and often vary within the same club based on the shift and day of week. Between stage fees and “tipouts” (see below), a dancer may have to earn $100 or more in tips and lap-dance charges per shift just to cover her required payments to the club. (See also “Off-Stage Fee.”)
37. Starter: The first woman to take her top off at a topless pool, which encourages other women to do so. [See Overviews, re: Topless Pools.]
38. Sympathy Tip: Same as “mercy tip.”
39. Table Dance: In Las Vegas, this is the same thing as a lap dance, though the term isn’t much in use anymore. In some cities, where physical contact between customers and dancers isn’t allowed, a table dance is an air dance on or near a customer’s table.
40. Theme Room: Some clubs provide small rooms for private shows decorated according to special themes. For example, a club may have a room decorated like a hospital room (where a dancer will dress like a nurse), or a schoolroom (where a dancer will dress like a schoolgirl). Theme-room dances are often more expensive than regular VIP-room dances.
41. Tipout: Most strip clubs require dancers to “tip” other strip-club employees, typically including the bartenders, bouncers, and doormen, and sometimes even the managers. In some clubs, the tipout is a set percentage of a dancer’s collections from lap dances, private dances, etc. In other clubs, the tipout isn’t mandatory, but is often considered essential by the dancers nevertheless, as it affects the shifts and days of the week they’re allowed to work, introductions to high rollers, etc. The tipouts and stage fees generally range from about $25 per shift to more than $100 in the high-end clubs.
42. Titty Ball: An informal game played by men in a topless pool to see who can get the topless women to jump for a beach ball.
43. Titty Test: A method used by men during a lap dance in a strip club to determine if a dancer will allow high-mileage physical contact in the VIP room. The method involves evaluating a dancer’s reaction when you reach for her tits.
44. Topless: A topless show is a show where the dancers show their breasts, including nipples. In Las Vegas, all topless clubs serve alcohol.
45. Vulture: A dancer in a strip club, usually well past her prime, who waits near the entry to pounce on new arrivals and hard-sell them dances before the customer has a chance to choose another dancer. If you respond to a vulture, she usually won’t leave you alone as long as she suspects you still have money in your wallet.
46. VIP Room: This is a room away from the regular stage dance area where dancers can entertain customers who pay extra for a more comfortable and private setting. VIP rooms often require that a customer pay a specified bar tab or purchase a bottle of champagne or other high-end liquor in addition to paying the room charge. In most VIP rooms, you’re not one-on-one with the dancer; a half-dozen or more customers may be in there with dancers at the same time.