Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Vexing Prize

Baby's come a long way.

Our current guest on Shaka Talk is stripper "Vixen Price". You may have seen her perform around Honolulu in the past, under different names as a singer/musician/puppet show proprietor, but in case her aunties or tutus accidentally catch the show, we'll stick to her current stage name, Vixen.

After travelling the Euro-continent, Vixen landed in San Francisco, where the sexual politics of the city fascinated her, (and her financial situation prompted her) to begin a career in erotic dancing. But she wasn't always so comfortable with her body.

A few years ago I was directing a shoot for Pendejo Magazine (R.I.P.), and Vixen agreed to model for us. Admittedly, it was for money, but she seemed to like the spontaneity of the request, and we were all rather excited at being semi-naked in public. However, at Zine Fest that year, when the magazine was finally released, Vixen's eyes welled-upp with tears, so publisher Ronnie Rucker & I started to worry.

We asked what was wrong, and she confessed that, she didn't realize how many lingering body issues she had, until seeing herself on the printed page. Not much else was said about the mag around her, and although we tried to blur out her face in the pics, when folks'd ask "is that your friend?" , Ronnie & I would laugh off the resemblance, and say it was someone who looked similar. Come to think of it, we should have said she'd styled the shoot, because that woulda been true.

When my co-hostess Edna Mc Man & I invited her to be our guest on Shaka Talk, Vixen already had some grand concepts in effect, that had to be reined in to fit onto one show. The Easter-inspired "piece" she'd planned to perform in our studio, wasn't a dance number, so we shot some B-roll of these bitches rolling around on the ground.

Vixen's Lesson for Edna pt 1

Part One of Vixen's Lesson for Edna was on my digital camera, and I think my camera work wasn't so bad. The segment we use on the air is from Part 1. While Part 2 was shot on my iPhone, and it hurts my eyes more than that first row seat at the opening night of Blair Witch Project did. Sorry.

In spite of my involvement, I think Vixen & Edna make upp for it with some sexy spectacles. There's even an unexpected character arc at the end of the second one that we allude to on our show. I'm most impressed by Vixen's energy and how she lets upp a little, but regains & maintains control & the direction of each clip.

Vixen's Lesson for Edna pt 2

Episode #10 of Shaka Talk opens with a clip from the Ms. Riot Pageant back from 2007 at Hula's. It's from the question & answer phase of the competition, hosted by Skeeter Mariah Crackseed, who does most of the talking. Vixen's reply to the question is actually a demonstration of the self-defense powers her accessories are imbibed with.

Shaka Talk #10 w/ Vixen Price part 1

During the interview, Vixen introduced us to a new term: faux queen, which I guess refers to a female who dresses extravagantly, or exaggeratedly feminine, as most male drag performers do. She also explains her interpretation of the term "queer". According to her definition, queer is someone who's come to terms with their sexuality & attractions, and the varying shades they're coloured with.

Shaka Talk #10 w/ Vixen Price part 2

Yes, Vixen is a stripper, but in the clip of a music video we show, it turns out D.R. removes both Vixen's & her own clothes. Though it's not discussed, this moment may have been a factor in Vixen's becoming a dancer. But she says it was the open sexual culture in San Francisco that led her work as a performer to take the erotic route.

While choreographing a number for a theatre performance, one of her accompanists told her she could get sponsors for her art, if she incorporated stripping into her work. That same friend happened to be a dancer, and took Vixen under her tutelage & taught her the ropes.

Vixen talks of the reverence and power of the vagina. Although the costuming and posturing are directed at titillating a man, she relishes the power a woman has over that man when she wields control of her body for the purpose of his enjoyment. She also dispels the myth that all club dancers perform sex acts while working. While Vixen has considered it, she doesn't have sex for money, nor does she frown upon it.

She says that dancing has made her the most honest that she's ever been. "It's the most raw social playground that I've ever been on. You have the whole spectrum of humanity as your customers & as your co-workers." While she acknowledges that for some, the sex industry is something they turn to when they're "down and out", "once you get in it, it's kind of a golden ticket, and then you realize that the taboo is really nothing at all."

Shaka Talk #10 w/Vixen Price part 3

I bring upp the question of breast size, and Vixen discusses the wide array of fetishes and facets of sexuality. Then we introduce the clip from part 2 of Vixen's Lesson for Edna, while Vixen runs back to the dressing room to change into her performance costume. Awkwardly for Edna, she didn't know which part of the clip we were showing, and I think she was a bit embarrassed at how enthusiastic she became during the lesson, and you can hear her reaction in the overlapping audio during the show.

Such is the charm of live television (live-to-tape, without edits), Vixen's costume change took longer than expected, thus Edna & I are forced to stall for time. We realize that the day we're shooting is Easter, so we go on an egg hunt to find Vixen. Diar decides to display her own stripping techniques, revealing some weird contours of her body. Which is more irritating: D.R.'s voice? or being exposed to her nearly nude body in motion?

Finally Vixen returns, with more eggs on and in her body, for us to search for and discover. These eggs hatch with jewelry, noisemakers, and even wads of cash. Vixen's crotch is a rainbow of Easter grass, with rabbit shaped pasties over her chichi's. She dedicates her performance to Jesus, and the show ends soon after Vixen's fake pubes fall off, as do Diar's panties.

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