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Turnabout: It IS Better Than Fair Play

| Aug 24, 2015
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Part 1 Meeting an Old Friend in a New Way



As she climbed the stairs to the second floor Pyramid Club above Café Cleopatra in Montreal it occurred to Linda that it had been almost a decade since she had last made that trip but it seemed like only last weekend. She swore to herself that some of the posters and photos on the stair walls were there during her last visit.

Passing the now-closed cloakroom and the empty stool where for years Leanne had sat collecting the cover charge (t-girls admitted for free) and entering the large night club room everything looked some familiar and comfortable. There was the large raised stage where the shows — two a night, one at 11 p.m., the next at 1 a.m. — and dancing by the customers would take place. The rows of tables were the same; the club could seat some 300 people. Light streamed from the two restrooms; men to the right of the bar, ladies and t-girls to the left. Even in the dim light she could see and recognize Pierre, her favorite server and Leanne standing at the back bar. ‘They are STILL here!’ she mused to herself.

Everything looked the same except for one thing: where were the customers? Even at this relatively early hour around 9 p.m. there would formerly have been a number of patrons there to take advantage of the 2 for 1 happy hour, working girls there to find an early trick and their potential clients looking for an early treat. This time there was virtually no one.

This didn’t totally surprise Linda. Since the advent of Internet dating, tougher drinking/driving laws and perhaps even anti-smoking regulations she had seen a decline in nightclub business across North America. “Oh well,” she thought, “you have to move with the times.” She knew that if it wasn’t for a sense of nostalgia this evening she probably would have looked for companionship through Craig’s List. Lord knows there were enough choices in the Montreal M4T section.

“Well, I’m here now. I might as well make the best of it.” She made her way over to introduce herself to Pierre and Danielle.

Introductions were not necessary. “How are you? Long time no see,” said Pierre.

“You remember me?” asked the somewhat stunned Linda, “Yes it has been a long time.”

“Sure I do — back row seating, two rum and cokes just before the end of happy hour. You loved to dance and you were always nice to the men.”

“That’s right. Was I that predictable? I remember how men used to send over a drink when they wanted to make contact. I got the feeling that you actually screened the men for me,” she said to Pierre, “I once saw a customer talking to you and pointing my way. You shook your head. I always wondered what you two had said.”

“Sometimes if we knew a guy was bad news or wasn’t right for you we would refuse to send over a drink. We told them you wouldn’t be interested or that you didn’t speak French. But also we would warn guys off the girls we knew were trouble or had a disease. Most of the guys tipped us nicely for that ‘service’.”

“Maybe I should have paid you a commission,” replied Linda thinking back to the times men had assumed she was an escort and had paid her well for her companionship.

“Not necessary and besides that would have been illegal,” said Leanne with a wink.

The three chatted about the customers from the bygone era. Pierre and Leanne seemed to remember all of them. “What about that girl who used to come here and dance by herself, often alone on stage, then sit by herself during the first show, get up and dance during the intermission and leave right at the start of the second show? That was strange.”

“She will be here in about 10 minutes,” said Pierre. Ten minutes later there she was, alone on the stage, gyrating with the same awkward moves Linda remembered from a decade earlier. “Her name was Lola”: that song immediately came back to mind. “At the Copa, Copacabana, the hottest club north of Havana,” it continued.

“How appropriate,” Linda thought, “the Cleo was obviously no longer the hottest drag club north of the border.”

Linda continued to survey the room. A few customers had wandered in and Leanne had briefly left each time to take their drink orders. She was now the waitress and Pierre the bartender.

“What about that girl over there?” Linda gestured to a relatively tall, pretty t-girl who had taken a seat at one of the tables Linda would have chosen back in the day.

“I don’t think we’ve ever seen her before,” replied Pierre.

“She speaks English,” added Leanne who had just finished serving her a drink, “she must be from out of town.”

“Perhaps she’s here for the big Liberal Party leadership convention,” blurted out Linda, thinking of the reason an English Canadian newspaper had contracted her to come to Montreal to write about the biggest political news story in Canada in several years. Of course it wasn’t Linda they had contracted. ‘She’ had simply come along in an extra suitcase.

“Perhaps,” said Pierre, “why don’t you go over and ask her?” he continued with a wink. As Pierre got busy elsewhere Linda sat there for a while thinking about approaching the interesting stranger. Despite her background in journalism she had never been comfortable making the first approaches. “That’s why I’m a columnist and not a reporter,” she would tell others. Perhaps she should send over a drink, she thought.

Just then the stranger got up and headed to the lady’s room. That was her chance, Linda thought. Over the years she had met many a girl as they shared one of the two large mirrors while tinkering with their make-up. As Linda entered the room her friend was just getting her lipstick out of her purse. Linda chose to apply yet another layer of mascara.

“How are you,” she started.


“Do you come here often?” Linda cringed as the old and corny line passed from her mouth. Well it was either that or “what’s a nice girl like you doing in a place like this?”

“I used to back some time ago,” the girl replied, “but this is my first time in years and my first time like this.”

“Oh really?” Linda’s interest meter shot way up?

“Look, I’m feeling a bit uncomfortable sitting out there all alone. Would you care to join me? My name is Alexis, by the way,” the new girl said.

“I’m Linda and yes I would love to join you.” There has got to be a story here, Linda thought to herself. Soon she would find out she didn’t know the half of it.

As the two girls made their way to Alexis’ table Linda made a detour to the bar to pick up her drink and settle her tab. “No charge,” said Pierre with a wink, “that’s for old times’ sake. Have fun tonight.”

“Thanks, and this is also for old times’ sake,” said Linda as she pulled a $20 out of her purse and placed it in Pierre’s palm as they kissed each other on both cheeks, Quebec style.

As Linda settled in to a chair next to Alexis she asked, “If you came here years ago you must remember Pierre and Leanne. They’ve been here forever.”

“Yes, I do and I’m pretty sure I remember you, too.”

“Really, I’m sorry I didn’t make the connection. What makes you think we met?”

“Did you work in Ottawa? Were you an assistant to a cabinet minister or something like that? Are you married with a couple of kids?” Linda’s new friend asked.

“True, true, true,” Linda replied, “but I don’t live in Ottawa any more. What are you, the Long Island medium or something?”

“No, I remember meeting you here. In fact it was Pierre that helped set it up. You were sitting by yourself right about here. I got up the nerve to ask him if you were approachable and he suggested I should send you over a drink. He said you were really intelligent and spoke very good English. At the time a lot of the girls apparently didn’t like us ‘maudit anglais.’

“Well they didn’t mind the Americans and the British as they tended to be generous customers but they had no use for English Canadians who didn’t even try to speak French and besides the ‘anglos’ tended to be cheap,” Linda informed.

“So when I met you, you were a guy?” Linda continued, “No wonder I don’t recognize you. I hope we had a good time.”

“I’ll say we did. In fact I’d say it was pretty well a life-changing experience for me.”

“How so? Don’t tell me you went home and decided to become a crossdresser. I wouldn’t believe that.”

“No. I’ve always loved wearing women’s clothes. But I was very much in the closet about it. I had a stash of lingerie hidden at home. I would also sneak opportunities to wear my wife’s skirts and nighties. The only thing I would do with anyone else is occasionally I would put on some of my wife’s lingerie when she and I made love. She was okay with that as she could sense the intense feeling that created for me.”

“So she was the beneficiary of your dressing?” Linda interjected.

“Yes.” Alexis continued, “I was crossdressing in private at home but I was too chicken to ever go out in public. So when I would come to Montreal, to Cleo’s, I would desire to be with you girls and also desire to be one of you girls.”

“That is so like my first experiences in Toronto,” Linda interjected again.

“I remember. You told me about that. So when I went home I started to read up on more active crossdressing. I took a crash course on the Internet which was in its infancy in those days, all those text based news groups, computers that would lose their connection when someone phoned. It was a challenge.”

“Tell me about it kid. But that is nothing compared to when we had to get our information by mail at postal boxes.”

“Well eventually I had the big talk with my wife,” Alexis said, “it went very well. She knew that being feminine was important to me.”

“Being feminine or being female,” asked Linda.

“Oh, very good. You, of course, know the difference. I cherish the moments of dressing, appearing and acting as a female but in a strange way that is to help satisfy my male sexual urges.”

“What about those urges?” asked Linda, “do you still act them out en femme with your wife?”

“Rarely. However I have come to enjoy taking on the femme role when I go out clubbing as Alexis. I have been with a few men and enjoyed the sense of empowerment my feminine sexuality gives me. It is nice to experience a man’s arousal.”

“Stop. You are making me hot!” smiled Linda, “so what brings you to Montreal?”

Alexis paused for a bit and then with a smile said, “The leadership convention. When I heard it was going to be in Montreal I got myself selected as a delegate from our area so I could spend my evenings here at Cleo’s and perhaps at some other clubs. But I’ll tell you I never expected to see you here. What brings you to Montreal? I thought you were with another political party.”

“No, I’m here for the convention but I’m a working journalist at the moment.” Alexis looked a little concerned. “But don’t worry what happens at Cleo’s stays at Cleo’s and if it comes to that wasn’t it your Trudeau that said the state has no business in the bedrooms of the nation.'”

The two girls chatted for a while, danced a bit and watched the first show. They were disappointed that Lady Brenda, Frankie Knight, Vicki Lane and the other regular showgirls of the past were no longer around but as they say “time marches on.”

As they chatted, an idea came to Linda’s mind. Actually it was a fantasy that Linda had had for a long time. This, she thought, may be the time to move it to the top of the bucket list. “Alexis,” she said with a smile, “seeing as you are here for the whole weekend I’ve got an idea I’d like to run by you.”

“I’m all ears,” said Alexis, “but first I have to go tinkle. Let’s talk about it when I get back.”

“I’ll come with you.” The two friends stood up and headed to the ladies’ room. As they walked Linda couldn’t help but notice the glances from the few other customers in the club, two in particular. She also couldn’t help but notice the turn of the head and the smile the flirty Alexis gave back to the two men.

And that dear readers, seems like a good place to stop for now. Come back in four weeks to hear Linda’s idea and Alexis’ enthusiastic reaction.

[Part 2]

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Category: Transgender Fun & Entertainment

Linda Jensen

About the Author ()

Canadian writer Linda Jensen is a long time contributor to TGForum. Before the days of the Internet Linda started her writing with the Transvestian newspaper. Her writing ranges from factual accounts of her adventures to fiction although frankly sometimes her real life adventures are stranger than the fiction. Linda is married to a loving partner who upon learning about Linda said, "she was part of you before I met you. Although I didn't know it she was part of the package I fell in love with. I don't want to mess up that package." "Does it get any better than that?" asks Linda.

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