Tuesday, March 26, 2013
***When The Blues Is Dues- When A Girl Has Got To Have It- Bessie Smith’s Put A Little Sugar In My Bowl-The X-Rated Version (Well PG Anyway)
… she admitted it, had admitted to herself earlier that evening, she needed, no, she wanted a man, a good man, hell, an average man, that night. She was tired of turning herself on her stomach in bed, her lonesome bed, and manipulating her tongue- wetted fingers deep down between her thighs rapidly for some thrills (rapidly, unlike some women, according to her girl talk friends, was the best way that she could get her thrills, slow just got her frustrated and a vibrator seemed silly the one time she had used it). That afternoon she had done the finger routine, had rolled on her stomach one more time but found that it did not satisfy her, did not satisfy her need for a man inside her, for that friction, for that flood wetness that a man gave her, for his jimson all sticky and wet that got her going again sometimes.
After a streak of bad breaks , bad karma, and bad, almost evil men she had, what did Bessie Smith call it in that gin house, barrelhouse song, oh yah, she had her wanting habits on. No question. She, before she got her current job working as a pool secretary, had been a waitress, a cocktail waitress, in a joint where every guy, married, single, a fag or two even, thought he could hit on her, and the management had expected her to take the cue, which she did for a while until she felt that she was nothing but low-priced whore and left. She had gone out with a few guys, a few big tippers, that management had said would help her out of her financial woes but she felt strange asking for money, although they gave it, gave it out of hand. And funny, she felt worse, when they did not offer her money, or she had to ask twice. Maybe there was a little whore in her, a little in every woman maybe every woman without a man, a steady man. Hell one guy did call her a whore, called her a whore one night when she was having her “friend” and just wanted to give him some skull. Apparently his wife didn’t like to give him head and so he thought every woman who did was a whore. Jesus. That guy though she made him pay, pay plenty for that remark. And he didn’t say a peep when he passed her the dough. Guys.
So fortified with a few shots of home scotch, high shelf-stuff some long ago guy, some guy with dough and maybe his own wanting habits on had brought along to seal the deal when she was on an earlier prowl, she went out, hailed the nearest cab, and went up to the Kit Kat Club all by her lonesome. If the sight of a good-looking dame with alabaster white skin, blue eyes, blond, real blonde, well, blonde with brownish highlights as she told the girls at the water cooler at work when they noticed, as they would, her new “color,” long legs and bedroom-begging hips ready to play house didn’t wake up some good, hell again, average guy, she swore she would go into a nunnery, well, maybe not a nunnery but do something like that to cure her itch and get back at those bastards, those evil guys, who took her for a ride and then left her flat.
The point was to be a little subtle when she got there, since a single woman looking like she looked, all long legs slinky dress, and looking like she was on the prowl, at that club meant only one thing and she would not have to draw the right guy a diagram to know what that thing was, if he was a right guy. She got out of the cab, paid off the cab driver and added a good tip for good luck and entered the club. No stranger she to the wilds of the Kit Kat Club, but previously she had been somebody’s“exclusive” (that “exclusive” was a story unto itself and the last damn time she would be somebody’s hands-off mistress while he was sitting at home most nights with wifey and she with just her wetted fingers for comfort), and so was a little hesitant as she headed to the bar, sat down at a corner stool, opened up her purse and pulled out a cigarette just like in the movies. No bites. No guy coming up out of nowhere to light the damn thing and make some small talk. She stood up for a moment to arrange her drink to give the boys a good look. Still no bite. A guy, a good-looking guy, looked in her direction, looked like a taker but then along came his honey from the Ladies’ Room and that dream flickered out.
Then from behind her came a soft male voice, not feminine, but soft, like the guy was a little unsure of himself. She turned in his direction and saw a fairly good-looking guy, maybe a professor over at Columbia or something like that from his airy look. He had asked if he could buy her a drink, she automatically said no, her womanly first response no, and then on some kind of cosmic whim, said hell, this guy is maybe it tonight. As she said, “yes scotch and water please” she thought how it was funny that guys always thought it was only them that were sex hunger and wouldn’t this professor be surprised at that if he knew his chances of getting laid tonight were looking better than when he, single man, came into the notorious Kit Kat Club.
As it turned out this guy wasn’t a professor but another one of those dime- a- dozen writers from down in the Village who are always trying to find themselves, and glad to tell you about the voyage. Although this guy turned out to have a big knowledge of blues stuff, stuff that she was interested in, stuff that if things worked out she might be able to get out from under that steno pool she was now imprisoned in and get a job in some club, maybe not the Kit Kat Club, but a club, as a torch singer. So they spent a lot of the talking about blues and jazz stuff, having some more loose scotches, and having a dance or two if the song was right. She noticed that when she danced with him he held her firmly but not tightly, the right way, and she also noticed that when they danced she was getting a little steamy, a little steamy in that old love puddle way. About two o’clock she asked him if he wanted to go home with her and before he said yes, she fairly drunk at that point, but also filled with hopeful desire that this guy would be alright, she asked him point blank as they entered a waiting cab if he “would put a little sugar in her bowl.” And knowing the exact meaning of that reference when they hit her place he did…