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I Feel Inspired Again (Finally)!

I woke up this morning feeling inspired af!


Lately, I've been in a mild creative rut. Nothing too serious, but it's been difficult for me to elevate my acts or come up with fun and original costuming ideas. I'm a little nervous because I'm about to perform in a few places that mean a lot to me -- Afrotease this weekend... Houston and Dallas next weekend, where my ENTIRE family is coming to support me, no big deal... New Orleans after that, a place synonymous with "sin" and "burlesque" in my opinion... and then go-go dancing at New York Burlesque Festival after that... and then Theatre fucking Bizarre, a gig I've been dreaming about since I debuted... not to mention BurlyCon, Philly, local D.C. gigs, etc. There's a lot on the horizon!

Photo by Atomic Cheesecake Studios

To clear my head, I've been trying to practice at least once everyday, cut down on unnecessary scrolling on social media, and focus on things at the library since we've been really busy. I've also been retreating into myself a bit, if that makes sense. I've been watching the performers around me more intentionally and nowadays I try to do much more listening than talking. My beloved House of Knyle family is a constant source of support. I could watch Egypt do her thing forever -- I always tell her she's my 24/7 teacher because I learn things just by watching her move through the burlesque world. Love that woman!! And it's been beautiful to watch everyone come together in support of next year's Noire Pageant! There's a lotta love going around right now.


Two things that really helped me this week in particular was watching Miss Gigi Holliday work her weekly La Boum Brunch party and watching the documentary League of Exotique Dancers - it's free right now on Tubi. I drank wine and watched that doc twice in a row. I fell in love with all the legends and hung on to their words... felt like there may have been some advice in there for me since I've been feeling a little off lately. I'm watching it again later on today so I can practice my calligraphy by writing out some of the more poignant quotes that stood out to me. I'll share on here after I practice. #accountability


The morning after watching League, I had the honor of performing at La Boum with Gigi. Gigi is the Entertainment Director, and I watched her the whole time (yes, I'm creepy). It was beautiful and eye-opening to see a black woman command a (often drunk, sometimes hostile) crowd, manage several employees, and throw a lit party all at the same time. The way she talked... it was distinctly authoritative and really very captivating. I was extremely proud while watching her work because that's not something I see everyday, unfortunately! In my muggle life, I've never had a black woman as a boss. I think it says something amazing about burlesque that Gigi is the first black woman boss I've ever seen in action. She pulled no fucking punches and commanded everything with ease.


As I watched her work, it dawned on me that I had never spoken with that much authority to anyone in my life, not even my son. I was taught that femininity meant soft, breathy voices and meek reserved demeanor. Society would have us believe that women don't make good bosses. And when we do make good bosses, we often get put in the bitch category.


I watched Gigi proudly own that bitch label as she worked. She even declared herself to the audience as the "HBBIC" - meaning "Head Brown Bitch In Charge". And everyone... and I mean everyone - gladly did everything she told them to do.


She'd make an excellent domme. My big picture goal for this September is to take control. I'm not sure what that means just yet, but I'm going to keep watching performers while they work, and I'm going to keep focusing on my craft and passion with zero apologies. If someone calls me a bitch, so be it. Watching "League" and watching Gigi this weekend rekindled a very beautiful, very ragey fire inside of me!!


Until next time,

Bebe

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