List List 2015: Lux ATL: Exotic dancer, Pink Pony/Professional pole instructor, Lux ATL Pole Dance
Relationship Status: Married
If a feminist stripper with a PhD sounds like an oxymoron, you haven't met this badass unicorn. Known as Lux ATL, Virginia-native Lindsay graduated from exotic dancer to published scholar within 15 years, before deciding to desert the academy for a different classroom. Today, her Pink Pony side hustle funds a growing creative practice as pole-dance instructor and performer. An articulate potty-mouth with a fierce cheek isolation technique — what's not to love?
In the field that I'm in you would think that I'm all about pleasing men, but in fact I'm not. I know how to do that, and it's a job. But what I really care about is women. That's my first priority.
My life's greatest ambition is to reach as many women as I can and instill them with the following ideas: reject the dominant narrative, love yourself, select from off the menu, live radically. Most importantly, be gentle with yourself and really take the time to know who you are. Think of all the things that haven't been done and go for those. It's women that I want to talk to because we've got enough examples of male greatness.
I felt gender-victimized for much of my life. Not that I simply felt that way, I absolutely was. I was the high school slut. I was absolutely brutalized for that socially. I had it written on my locker. By the way, the dude that I fucked became a hero. We all know this story. Then I got with a dude when I was 17 who was much older than me. He beat me very badly, and I was hospitalized. When I came back to school I was humiliated for it. A fucking male teacher made fun of me for being on crutches, OK, for my taste in men. For a decade, I didn't speak out about this because I didn't want to make anybody else uncomfortable. But then I started to talk about it. I performed at 7 Stages last year for a piece called Exposed: Humanity in Motion. It was a pole performance, but it was about domestic violence and I essentially reenacted stuff. Every time I did this performance, I had a different woman come up to me fucking weeping and being like, "Thank you for doing that. You spoke to me, and I feel you."
That means everything to me. Reaching women with my art in ways that allow them to feel the truth that they haven't been able to speak, that's what it's about for me. And now that I've spoken it, they have the license to speak their truth as well.
What band were you obsessed with when you were 14?
Tori Amos. That woman read the diary of my heart and made it into albums. She inspired me so deeply.
Who was your first crush?
I shit you not. I remember being about 8 years old and fantasizing about Axl Rose being my babysitter.
What's your guiltiest pleasure?
When I'm driving on road trips in the South, I like to listen to evangelical radio. It's just so absurd that it's not even worth getting mad at. It's always a sobering, yet entertaining, yet horrifying reminder that many people really believe and think this way. It's racist. It's sexist. It's just ugly shit. Florida has got some great evangelical radio.
Do you have a favorite quote or a mantra?
"I am in rebellion against those ... who make the laws, who edit the newspapers, who, without once inquiring into the personal elements which distinguish every situation, condemn in advance all to a conformity which has no individual significance." It's by Evelyn Scott. She was a very famous writer in her time but fell into obscurity.
What's your own character flaw you'd most like to fix?
I don't know that I want to fix this thing. I know very well what my character flaw is ... I'm a hedonist. My impulse control is rather shit. I love to do what's going to be fun and pleasurable, frequently at the cost of doing things I ain't supposed to be doing, or things that are naughty, or things that are going to cost me money. It's also one of my best qualities, and it's given me so many wonderful things in life. But it also causes me to be reckless.
What's your favorite curse word?
Fuck, obviously. I use that one a lot. I have a real reputation for being foulmouthed.
What's your best move on the dance floor?
Oh, man, I have got some fucking good ones. I think what I'm famous for is booty isolations. I do have an instructional YouTube video with over 12,000 views. And I think it's very helpful. Believe it or not my Facebook inbox is often filled with women sending me videos of them making their butt cheeks pop. And they're not coming on to me, they're, like, looking for pointers. It's wonderful.
What happens when you die?
Remember that void you occupied for like eons before you came into existence? Remember that? That.
What's your favorite candy?
Nerds, man. I'm addicted.
If you were convicted of a crime, what would it be?
Laughs Possession of marijuana.
What's the one thing you most hope to accomplish this year?
To be able to parlay all of my stripping skills into fully instructional pole dancing and no longer depend on strip club money. I'd love for my art to support itself.
What's the best place to see live music?
I suck at this because I never go see live music anymore. I think the hip thing to say would be the Earl. But let me level with you, I've never been laughs.
Name one thing you've stolen.
What haven't I stolen? How about the time I stole a rhinestone belt to wear as a stripper from fucking Claire's Boutique. I still have it.
What's in your nightstand?
Lube and sex toys. And maybe, like, a Kindle.
What's your weirdest recurring dream?
I've had a very long-standing recurring nightmare where I awake and look in the mirror to discover that I have gotten breast implants. Hey, listen, nothing but love for y'all out there with your fake boobs. That being said, in the dream I wake up, I look down, I have these big fake boobs. I have no boobs in reality, and that I'm more than happy with. But in the dream, I wake up to these big fake boobs and I'm like, "Oh, god!" Because I no longer have real boobs, it's like I don't have boobs anymore. I'm like: "I'll just get 'em taken out. But no, because the skin's gonna be loose, and it can never be fixed. I can never have my natural boobs again!" It's a stress dream. I have this dream in periods of my life when I'm going through shit. I was dreaming about fake tits when I was about to defend my dissertation, for example. Perhaps it comes from years of working around fake boobs and very regularly being told, 'You need to get some implants.' Not getting implants. Everything on me is real. OK, the lashes are fake. Everything else is real.
What's the lamest pickup line someone tried to use on you?
I really love the in-boxes that play out thusly: "Hi." "Hey." "Hi." "Hello there." "Hey" "Hey beautiful." "Hello?" "Oh, fuck you then bitch." Dude will say hi for seven weeks unanswered. And then he'll get pissed off. Or there's always the "Surprise, here's my dick!" pic. Like, so fuckin' glad you sent me that dick pic. Sometimes they're wonderful. But usually they're not. I generally don't respond to dicks. I do occasionally respond when condescending men who know nothing about me write me letters about what I should be doing with my life. "You know, you should think about going to college." Bitch, I have a fucking PhD. You're telling me to go to college? Take a seat. Where do you get the idea that you have license to tell me how to live? See, that's that sexism. So, that's the kind of shit that I will occasionally respond to. Dick pics? No, I ignore them. My friend said that you should send a picture of a prettier dick. Like, just have a bomb-ass dick pic on-hand and reply with it laughs.
Is there a drawback to being attractive?
No, absolutely not. It's complete privilege.
Not counting rent or bills, where does most of your disposable income go?
Me and my best friend have Drunk Sunday every Sunday afternoon. We go to Mr. C's. This is our dive bar, our haunt. And we sit around and we fucking drink. And we bitch. We go off for hours. It's really beautiful. You can smoke in there. It's small. There's, like, the same five drunks. If I started naming people, people are going to recognize them — like that drunk high-school teacher for example. Or how about the old dude who's always asleep there, like, fucking repeatedly.
Name the last movie you cried during.
I don't know about the last, but Brokeback Mountain threw me into a deep depression for about two weeks. I was sobbing at my desk, like, what the fuck. I don't even know. It moved me deeply. I'll never watch it again. I loved it. It was so beautiful. But I cannot do that to myself again. It hurts too bad.
Have you ever stolen a friend's boyfriend?
Oh, absolutely. I have no compunction over doing that. I stole my husband from his girlfriend — who, by the way, works for the CIA. She was a very nice, reasonable person; I knew she wouldn't do anything crazy. I knew that she loved him, but I loved him, too. I cared more about me than I did about her.
What's the best way for a customer to hit on you?
That's a tough one. It is very, very difficult to get my attention romantically, especially if I'm working in a strip club. Because I'm absolutely on. I'm going to be as charming and engaging as I possibly can with you, regardless of my actual level of interest. The best way for you to make me really like you is for you to genuinely show me that you're interested in learning who I am. Ask me, 'What was your dad like?' Ask me, 'Where did you go to high school?' Ask me, 'What did you eat for breakfast this morning?' Ask me questions that show you give a shit, rather than complimenting my ass. 'Cause we both know that's fabulous.
Why do you think you're on the Lust List?
This is hard to answer without sounding like a douche bag, right? I think I'm on the Lust List because I make it my business and my social duty to be loud and proud about loving who I am, and I don't give a fuck what you think I'm supposed to look like or how I'm supposed to behave. I am going to do exactly as I like, and you're going to love it. I think that is probably what attracts people to me. I think there's a million people in the world every bit as pretty as me. That's all artifice anyways, right?