Cupping vs. Tweaking

Wednesday, April 30th, 2008

So as part of my research for an upcoming article, I needed find out the strip club regulations in various cities. I figured the best way do this would be contact the strip clubs themselves–who, after all, have to abide by the regs. That has led to several conversations like the one below, which I had with the general manager of a club in Baltimore this afternoon.

Me: So what’s the law on nudity in Baltimore?

Her: We’re all-nude in the city. Baltimore County is pasties and a g-string. But the dancers have to be on a platform that’s at least 18 inches off the ground.

Me: And can you serve alcohol?

Her: Yep.

Me: What about lap dances?

Her: Well, we call them “table dances.” There’s no touching.

Me: By customers or by dancers?

Her: Dancers can’t touch each other. They can touch customers, but the customers can’t touch back.

Me: But they’re nude?

Her: Oh, no. Dancers have to be in uniform when they give table dances. Of course, there’s also the Champagne Room. But we consider that private, so the rules are a little looser there.

Me: I see. Any other laws you think are worth noting?

Her: Hmm. Well, there’s no toy play. And a dancer isn’t allowed to touch herself on stage.

Me: At all?

Her: Well, no, not at all. But, you know. She can’t, like, pleasure herself.

Me: Ah. So she can’t touch her genitals.

Her: She can touch them, but she can’t masturbate. Or pretend to. No penetration.

Me: Gotcha. Can she touch other parts of her body?

Her: She can, but it can’t be stimulating. So she can cup or squeeze her breasts, but she isn’t allowed to tweak her nipples, for example.

Me: So the difference between cupping and tweaking is the difference between following the law or breaking it?

Her: Yep . . . You’re enjoying this, aren’t you?

Me: I do love my job.

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24 Responses to “Cupping vs. Tweaking”

  1. #1 |  Matthew | 

    “Radleeeeeeey! Radley to the main staaaaaaage!”

    Ya know, I can almost imagine hearing that on the loud speaker. I just hope it’s not actually you who comes out :D

  2. #2 |  bob | 

    Texas’ “titty-tax” has be declared unconstitutional but the blue nosed bible thumpers that run the state have decided to go ahead and collect it anyway, while they appeal.

  3. #3 |  skeppie | 

    I feel bad for the Baltimore Vice officers. Imagine all the hours of undercover work they must have to do, sitting in the local strip joints staring at the nakey dancers to make sure they’re only cupping, not tweaking…

    “You think that was a tweak?”
    “No, looked like a cup to me.”
    “You sure?”
    “Well, maybe not. We’ll just have to watch some more, I guess.”
    [sighs] “Yeah. You got any more Fivers on ya, I’m running low.”

  4. #4 |  Andrew | 

    Admit it. That was the most fun you’ve ever had doing an interview, isn’t it?

  5. #5 |  el serracho | 

    brilliant. seriously, the second best thing i’ve read all day. thank you.

  6. #6 |  Tim | 

    You know, this post is kind of useless without pictures… :)

  7. #7 |  Shon | 

    I wonder how mrs.Radley thinks?…….:)

  8. #8 |  b-psycho | 

    So completely nekked women can touch themselves, as long as they don’t, um “touch themselves”?

    I’d give anything to have been a fly on the wall during THAT policy session…

  9. #9 |  bob | 


  10. #10 |  Sithmonkey | 

    You know, this post is kind of useless without pictures…

    I agree…unless you post pictures, allowing us to verify your research, anything you post on this subject will be fiction…hot fiction, but fiction none the less…

  11. #11 |  Jonathan Hohensee | 

    “Her: We’re all-nude in the city. Baltimore County is pasties and a g-string. But the dancers have to be on a platform that’s at least 18 inches off the ground.”

    Stripers on stilts?

  12. #12 |  EdinTally | 

    Brooklyn and Sauget Illinois.

    Nuff said. :)

  13. #13 |  Danno49 | 

    I love your job, too. ;)

  14. #14 |  Vlad Drac | 

    I’m glad Radley can do his job without getting depressed or homicidal. Just reading his reports is a miserable, infuriating experience.

  15. #15 |  B | 

    Radley, have you read Candy Girl by Diablo Cody? You may find it useful.

    I’ve read sections, and it is very entertaining (and informative). My wife heartily recommends it (she’s read the whole thing).

  16. #16 |  Jrob | 

    Where do I send an application to be your research assistant?

  17. #17 |  The Bitch Girls | 

    […] put up this amusing post about his “research” that includes learning about the regulations facing strippers who […]

  18. #18 |  BloodyMaryBreakfast | 

    See, this is why journalists have such a lazy reputation any more. The proper way to research strip clubs is most definitely NOT over the phone. There are some things you just have to experience in person to get the whole story.

  19. #19 |  witless chum | 

    Grand Rapids, MI, has (not shockingly) some kind of antinudity law. I went to a buddy’s bachelor party up there and was surprised to find out the strip club was a non-strip club. Girls in skimpy attire, served booze, had lap dances.

    I think state law says you can have totally nude dancers, but no booze. But topless only if you serve booze.

    Down here in Kalamazoo, we’re apparently the sin bin of West Michi-gen.

  20. #20 |  Andrew Williams | 

    Remember reading Paul Krassner’s autobio where he talks about his brief period (pun intentional) as editor of HUSTLER while Larry was recuperating from not dying of gunshot wounds. The strictures on pictorial porn were equally weird. Probably still are.

  21. #21 |  b-psycho | 

    Eh, I actually prefer BYOB places anyway. You can bring better drinks than they’d ever sell you.

  22. #22 |  drobviousso | 

    Odd. I thought, based on the title, that this would be about coffee…

  23. #23 |  Knud | 

    I look forward to the article.

  24. #24 |  DelanyDecolleur | 

    I will have to stop by Baltimore on my way up the coast. I love the cupping vs. tweaking rule…hilarious. At least they don’t have to do bikini dances.