Ryann Reflections

A glimpse into the life of one anti-social stripper nerd.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008


I’m annoyed. I’ve been mildly annoyed at The American for a week or so. There have been tentative plans for him to come to Vancouver that keep getting pushed back or left unconfirmed and I really don’t have time for that. It’s not a big deal but it was annoying.

He called me last night to tell me they’re going to be in town—today! Sigh… my life doesn’t function with 24 hours notice. Sometimes flukes happen and I’m able to squeeze in an unexpected lunch with a friend, but with Stiletto Storm I’m swamped.

I rearranged a few things and let him know that I could be free between 2:00— 4:00pm this afternoon. We could do a late lunch or coffee, but I’m really busy and that’s the only time I can make on such short notice.

Reid texted me this morning asking if I was free for lunch. I haven’t seen him in weeks, and I miss him, but I turned down the lunch.

The American called shortly after and I missed the call. I checked my voicemail, “Hey, we’re on our way. We should be in town around noon then we want to go check out Gastown, then hop a seabus to North Vancouver, and then dinner around 5:00 and we’ll be out of town by 6:00.”


By my calculations that would put him in North Van during the window I gave him. I called him back, talked to his voicemail, and explained that I’m only free during the afternoon, and I can’t go to North Van.

Then I wait… and get more work done… and wait… and go to physio… and wait… and pick up my gloves from Justice, make a few phone calls, return a few emails… and wait… then I make myself lunch.

At 2:23 I receive a text. “We’re checking out N. Van. What do you think of the snow?”

WHAT THE FUCK!! Now I’m really annoyed.

I shook my head, ate my lunch, and texted back “I'm a little disappointed that I made time this afternoon and you didn't. It would have been nice to see you.

American: I was hoping we could meet up between 4:30 and 5:30. Does that not work for you?

Obviously this guy doesn’t listen at all. “No. I told you yesterday that I can be free between 2 and 4. I already have dinner plans.”

American: Oh that sucks. I don't remember hearing about your dinner plans. We had to squish a 2 day trip into 5 hours, so there is a lot that I wish we could have done.

At that point I ran out of things to say that wouldn’t include the words “presumptuous, self-absorbed, or inconsiderate” so I haven’t replied.

Why do so many guys expect my life to be free and available whenever it works for them? It feels disrespectful to assume that my plans are either non-existent or able to be rescheduled at the drop of a hat. I don’t live like that. I have a life, and a business, and friends, and stuff to do.

And right now I’m really annoyed. But I do have dinner plans with Carmine in a couple hours and that’s going to be a ton of fun.

Fuck dating.


Monday, January 21, 2008

What I need

It’s been an ongoing joke for weeks that I’m accepting applications for the position of “boyfriend” and with everything that’s been running through my head in the past couple of days I thought I should sit down and really revisit what I need.

I’m pretty sure when I say boyfriend people picture some cute accessory to my life. It’s probably because most of the time I think of boys as puppies. There are lots of things I want… like blue eyes and a hairy chest. But at the end of the day I’m actually looking for a partner—not a puppy, not a toy or an accessory, but someone who can compliment my life without getting in the way of it.

I actually caught myself saying to Rose in reference to The American, “He doesn’t live here. That’s awesome. He can’t interfere with my life. That might be a good distance.”

I wrote it out years ago. I just re-read it ten minutes ago. Most of it has remained the same, some of it I've updated. I think I’ve known for years what I really need.

So I’m throwing it out into the universe…

1. I want someone who can match me in every way. Who will not back down and who will challenge me. Someone who will help me realize my dreams and expand my mind.

2. I want to be with someone who is true in his opinion, will accept the challenge and communicate, and is stubborn and will argue rather than avoid, but will fight fair.

3. I want someone, whom I can learn from, in an equal partnership, who will ground me and who will create a sense of home.

4. I need a Man who is more powerful than I am. I need someone who I feel comfortable surrendering power and control to.

5. I want a man who adores how feminine and traditional I really am. I know my idea of traditional is different than most and juxtaposed with my ambition and independence it’s unique. I want to be his woman. I want to take care of my Man. I will honour and respect him and do everything I can to encourage and help him.

6. I want a partner with whom conversation will never be stale, who I can talk to about both the important things in life and about nothing

7. I need someone who appreciates my independence and will not feel threatened by it, or resentful of it. I need my space and my alone time. I’m a writer. It’s how I think, recharge, and refocus. I can’t handle clingy demands on my time and space.

8. I want a man who is ambitious, creative and intelligent, who is secure in his sense of self, and has his own life goals and dreams that do not come second to mine.

9. I want a partner who is educated and appreciates the dedication and commitment that it requires. He must love to learn, and love to think.

10. I want someone who I can be comfortable with in total silence

11. I need a man who I can snuggle up to and feel safe and protected

12. I deserve someone who understands unconditional love, and willingly offers to love me unconditionally and accept and return my level of commitment, dedication and loyalty. Someone who is emotionally available, will not take advantage of my love, nor hold back.

13. I deserve a man who respects and loves me enough to not deliberately disappoint or hurt me.

14. Trust. I need a man who I can trust with my life, my heart, and my soul. I will give him everything. I have to trust that he will take that responsibility seriously and protect me.

15. Honesty. It’s the foundation of every relationship I value. Even when it isn’t comfortable, I need a partner who will not lie to me. Lies of omission are still lies.

16. Appreciation of the beauty of life, and the simple pleasures.

17. I want a man who is physically active and takes care of his body and his health.

18. I want a man who is socially and environmentally responsible.

19. I will be with someone who respects my friends and family and my relationship with them, and who has a positive and healthy relationship with his own family.

20. I need a man who shares my values—especially of home, family, friendship, and loyalty. I’m looking for forever. I need a man who can understand and make that commitment.

21. I want a partner who wants children- who sees himself as a father and looks forward to being a part of a family.

22. I need someone who I can feel the energy between us, and the physical attraction cannot be ignored or rationalized, who is sexually compatible with me.

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Sunday, January 20, 2008

Mother Fucker!

The problem is that I like him. If I didn’t everything would be just fine. Even if it was a simple attraction or familiarity and comfort—like with the Musician—I’d be okay. But it’s not. I actually like him. It’s not just the sex. It’s how safe I feel with him. It’s how curious he is about my life and my goals. It’s how the conversation flows, and how the power flows. I honestly think he and I would be great together. I suspect we might be exactly what the other one needs.

Mother Fucker!

I have no willpower when it comes to Alexander. He calls and I reluctantly, but obediently, go see him. I can scream at him but it makes no difference. He knows I want him. He knows it with a secure arrogance that both infuriates and attracts me.

I’ve been so good at avoiding him. I made him go away for months. But last night that all changed. He said he’d be good. I had to find out what we are. Unfortunately I don’t think I’m any closer to knowing that than I was yesterday.

I don’t understand why he so easily does this to me. Back in the summer I told both Alexander and the Musician that I was ready for a relationship and I had to end the casual affairs before I did anything stupid like falling in love. I got out just in time.

I know I’m at risk of falling for Alexander. I know it. He should know it. I’ve said it. I’ve sworn at him “you can’t keep fucking me! If I sleep with you any longer I’m going to get attached. I’m going to fall in love with you. It’s been FIVE FUCKING YEARS! Just go away! Let me move on. I want a boyfriend. I want someone who loves me and wants to be with me. I’m available. I’m open. I want more than what you’re offering. Casual isn’t good for me anymore! I’m ending it.”

And what does he respond with… “Hey, I’m coming over.”

Mother Fucker!

But I could see it. I honestly and truly could see us together. After five years of quietly getting to know him, of watching him, I have a pretty good idea of who we are. And God Dammit! It think would work.

Not that I’ve told him that. I’ve kept silent about what I actually want, about what type of relationship I actually need. I think I might have to say it.

I think I might have to say, out loud, "Alexander I think you and I would be really good together. I need to know if you’re ever going to care about me or if I’ll always just be a fuck toy to you. I need to know. I need to know out loud, for real."

That sounds like a fun conversation.


Saturday, January 19, 2008

lazy and good

It’s 2:30 in the afternoon and I’m still in my care bear pajamas. Hmmm I just realized after hitting spell check that I have NO IDEA how to actually spell pajamas. That must be why I’ve been insisting on writing and texting PJs for my entire life. Pa-jam-as. Huh. Got it!

Here’s a secret confession for you: I’m a horrible speller. I failed every single spelling test in school. It wasn’t until I started writing everything on my computer that I began to notice when that squiggly red line appeared — glaring at me — daring me to smarten up and learn to spell. And I did! I’m pretty good now. Of course there’s always words like pajamas that have eluded me for over twenty years but now I can check that one off the list too.

Anyhow I’ve gotten totally off track. It’s Saturday afternoon and I feel like I’m being unbelievable lazy. It’s odd really because it's so far from reality. I’ve been in front of my computer working on Stiletto Storm for close to ten hours a day but because I haven’t had a shower or left the house today I feel unproductive. No worries though. I’m going to buy groceries later.

I’m fabulously happy and content. I’ve done my exercises this morning—so I don’t get fat. I ate leftover casserole I made last night and as soon as I post this and have a shower I’m going to meet a friend for coffee. Life is good.

OOoh and The American from New Years… yeah he called last night and he’s coming to visit me next week. (I might be a little giddy about it—shhhhhhh) I suppose we’ll have to go dancing. I think I can live with that. I also went on a lovely first date with a friend of Carmine’s from New Years-- Monkey. And if he calls me again then I can go on a delightful second date. That sounds like fun. See life is good and smart, creative, eligible men just keep appearing in my life. Selection is good ;-) but really I only need one.

It’s strange. I’m basically unemployed right now throwing all of my time and energy into Stiletto Storm. I’m doing occasional stags and birthday parties but no regular pay. And I’m okay with it. I have complete faith in everything to work out.

Now I’m going to go have a shower and get the hell out of the house for a bit.


Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Applications online!!!

Stiletto Storm Productions Ltd. is a brand new event production company created by women for women – focusing on highlighting the exotic and acrobatic aspects of dance, while empowering women in a positive atmosphere.

Over the week of July 14-20, 2008, at the Vancouver Playhouse, Stiletto Storm will be hosting a Showcase of Alternative Entertainment—the highlight of which will be the National Exotic Dance Championship.

The company was founded in 2007 by Canadian exotic dancer Ryann Rain. Her vision is to create a celebration and showcase of some of Canada s best exotic and alternative entertainers and bring their power and seduction to mainstream attention and markets. The growing interest in pole dance combined with the increasing demand for women-positive adult entertainment has created a unique opportunity. Stiletto Storm Productions was created to fill that void, by creating a world-class annual theatrical event.

Stiletto Storm’s premiere nationwide event, the 2008 National Exotic Dance Championship, will bring the sensuality, intrigue and art of exotic dance to the masses! The company was designed to showcase female talent, and empower women in an inclusive and positive atmosphere. It will be a week of intense competition and stunning live performances. The competitors of Stiletto Storm possess the appeal of Hollywood starlets. They are also gymnasts, acrobats, and contortionists - but above all, dancers.

The event falls in the midst of the 30th annual Pride celebration, and will incorporate Pride themes to draw from the 400,000 participants attending the festivities. Over the week the Showcase of Alternative Entertainment will bring various forms of erotic and exotic together under one roof for different shows. It will feature burlesque, drag shows, and boylesque just to name a few.

“Our mission is to protect the future of the art and heart of exotic dance,” affirms Rain. “We believe in the power of women and the strength of diversity.”

The event will be a fabulous extravaganza. Competitors will have the opportunity to perform in a full-size theatre, on a professional stage with rigging and a trained crew. Every effort will be made to accommodate special props, creative ideas, and unique skills.

Not only is Stiletto Storm accepting applications for the Canadian National Exotic Dance Championship, but they’re also looking for shows and performers for the Showcase of Alternative Entertainment. Applications are now available online at www.stilettostorm.com



My mind is full of random memories. In this rare occasion I’m wishing I had someone to curl up next to. It’s been too long since I had any physical companionship and I’m missing it right now. I’m churning with energy, vitality and purpose. Everything is snowballing in front of me and I believe I really truly believe that everything I’m working on will come together. I have faith.

I want to share it. I want someone to wrap their arms around me and know that I’m amazing. I want the release of passion and the strength of masculinity. I’m not lonely. It’s a different feeling. I’m feeling an urge to let myself be vulnerable. I want to fall in love. I want to feel safe in the arms of a man who will protect and adore me. It will come. I know it will… in time.

Yet I still miss both the Musician and Alexander. I miss the fragile intimacy of what The Musician was and I miss the unfinished idea of what Alexander could be.

I want to text one of them. It doesn’t matter which. In my mind they’ve become a united memory—something I desire only in secret. I won’t actually do it. I’ll go to bed with my care bear and snuggle warm under my covers, safe and determined to not be that foolish.
It’s the opposite of a void. I feel confined within myself. I want to break out of this protective shell and fall into something more powerful. It’s as though I’m splitting at the seams, restrained by time, waiting for the shell to crack open.

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Monday, January 14, 2008

Club was a safe haven

The Burnaby News Leader interviewed me for this story the other day...

Show lounge closure saddens women who worked there

It was her favourite club and she would dance at few others.

The staff was friendly, the customers supportive and most importantly, she felt safe when performing there.

Now that it’s closed, Ryann Rain (her stage name) says she may have performed her last exotic dance routine.

“I was in tears the final night, bawling my eyes out on stage—really, really sexy—because for me it was the end of my home and I can’t dance anymore,” she said. “Mugs and Jugs was my bread and butter and paid my rent.”

As reported in the NewsLeader on Thursday, the College Place Hotel—home to both Mugs and Jugs and the Chicago Tonight nightclub—has been sold to BC Housing, which plans to convert the building to provide an emergency shelter and transitional housing. The closure of the Mugs and Jugs is part of a trend in the region, and Rain wasn’t alone in her admiration for the exotic show lounge.

According to The Naked Truth (www.nakedtruth.ca), a website devoted to Lower Mainland exotic dancers, New Westminster’s Mugs and Jugs was voted the best place to work in an online poll.

“They were a great staff to work with. It was like a family,” said Rain, 27.

Mugs and Jugs isn’t the only exotic show lounge to recently close its doors. On Thursday it was announced the Cecil Hotel was sold to a developer who plans to tear down the building and put up condominiums.

The North Burnaby Inn, the Marble Arch, the Drake and the Fraser Arms are some other clubs closed over the last decade.

But the trend of strip clubs closing is about more than these establishments closing their doors, say dancers.

Trina Ricketts, a former exotic dancer who founded The Naked Truth, sees it as the loss of safe work options for many women—many who are mothers or support loved ones.

“In the sex industry, a strip club is considered a safe-sex work option. It’s safe because you have bouncers, staff and no contact options,” said Ricketts, a South Surrey resident and mother of two.

The feminist and advocate for women worked in the sex industry as a stripper for nine years before leaving. She became an exotic dancer for reasons similar to many women—to pay the bills.

Ricketts said she worked numerous minimum-wage jobs, often more than one at a time, and still couldn’t pay the rent and put food on her table. With exotic dancing she could finally make a livable wage.

But she always had her boundaries—she was comfortable performing naked but that’s where it ended.

“For me, exotic dancing saved me. It was about performing, it was about art, it was about power and money,” she said. “But it wasn’t about having strangers touch my body. In that way, I find it really scary that exotic dance clubs are closing.”

Both Ricketts and Rain sees changes ahead with clubs closing down. And neither like where things are going.

Many of the remaining clubs are pushing things like lap dances or private dances.

“With Mugs and Jugs closing, we’re near the end of no-contact options for women making a living in the sex industry,” said Rain.

“For women that have to support a family, it means a lot tougher decisions for them.”



Thursday, January 03, 2008

Happy New Year!!!

I’m impatient. “Let’s dance.” I shout as Rose shimmies over to Sierra and I. Clad all in scarlet red we’re the three Sirens out on the town tonight. I need tonight to embrace change. I can feel the excitement building and I know Sierra was right in dragging me here. She can’t resist the urge to say so “I told you it would be fun.”

“Uh huh. Now teach us.” I demand. Sierra has been doing ballroom and latin dancing for over a year but Rose and I are used to dancing solo on stage. We find an open corner and pay close attention to her instructions. “…right foot back, left, right foot up, pause. Now the other one. Left foot back…”

Rose and I high-five.

The lessons have barely ended when a stranger appears in front of me “care to dance?” He asks, holding out his hand. Of course I say yes and we dance, and dance… and dance.

I glimpse Rose being spun around the dance floor in one corner and Sierra in the middle of the room. “Break time.” I grin at my dance partner and beeline it to where I suspect Rose has dropped our purses. I’m correct. I grab the purses and their bottled water and hover near the edge of the dance floor talking to my dance partner. He’s American, just came up for New Years to dance and has blue eyes. (okay I noticed that last part)

Sierra joins us on the next song and reaches for her bottled water. ‘I may have drank it.” I smirk as she scolds me and proceeds to finish Rose’s. I spy Rose hurrying over to us looking panicked and I wave her purse in the air. “I have them.”

“Omigod! I was so worried. I put them down and then… hey who’s the hottie?” She interrupts herself having noticed the tall dark and handsome standing next to me.

I laugh and do the introductions, ignoring the look Rose is giving me. It’s shaping up to be an amazing evening. We giggle and wiggle as only Sirens can do, lost in girly fun.

A wave of relief washes through me as the countdown ensues (and not due to the new hottie beside me). With every number being shouted I feel my fear and anger melt away. Surrounded by new and old friends we cheer and giggle and yell “Happy New Year!” I grin as Rose and Sierra attempt to sip from each other’s champagne but instead spill the sticky liquid on their chests.

I blush as both girls coo while watching the American kiss me. And then we dance the night away. I dance and giggle and dance until I can feel my feet swollen against the leather of my shoes.

Still grinning I collapse on a bench in the hallway with my unexpected date. Rose joins us shortly, flinging herself onto the bench and kicking her heels off. “I’m done.”

“Me too.” I don’t move.

Sierra finds us slumped against the wall and shakes her head. “You lazy bums. Is that it?”

I raise my eye brows. “You wanna keep dancing?”

She shoves Rose over and plops down next to us. “Ha. I’m done too.”

It’s been a good night but it’s barely begun. I promised Carmine I’d show up at the house party she’s spinning at and meet her fabulous friends. Rose takes off first. She also has another engagement. Sierra collects our coats while I say goodnight.

It’s 2:30am by the time I arrive at the house party. Hank is sitting in the kitchen mixing something that looks like purple syrup. I grin and jump into his arms demanding a New Years hug. Carmine’s pretty boyfriend is the next to spot me. He grabs me in his arms, spins me off my feet and plants a sloppy kiss on me before I have a chance to escape.

Carmine shrieks when she sees me “You made it! Damn you look hot! Oh I have people you need to meet.” She grabs my wrist and drags me into the living room. “This is my amazing friend I’ve been telling you about.” She announces to random people.

I collapse on the couch and bury myself in conversation with Monkey while watching scantly clad bodies float in time to the music. There’s no way I’m dancing again tonight but Carmine was right there are interesting people here.

By the time I fall into my bed dawn is hovering on the horizon. It was good night- a really good way to start the New Year.

Ginger called me New Years day and we shared the exact same sentiment—Thank God 2007 is over! Bring it on! It’s going to be an amazing year. Change is good.

I’m ready now.

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