There used to be a most hilarious strip club* just two blocks from the bail window of the Manhattan Detention Center. And while our efforts to have it named a historic landmark by the proper authorities in New York City failed to keep it from being shuttered in favor of some trendy bar, it lives on in the tall tales of the those in the know, then and now.
What has this to do with Lebanon? Well, I would like to share my memories of Hamra’s al-Jazz and similar establishments in Lebanon at some point on this blog, but today my mind drifts toward Fatah al-Islam and the shadowy world of home-made porn.
For those unaware of the Manhattan club’s lost charm, we used to say: imagine I told you had 30 minutes to create a strip club in your unfinished basement and your clientele would be those who had just posted bail after spending a week in the company of men for whom the laws of polite society had remained somewhat of an abstraction.
If your mind is beginning to churn over the possibilities therein, let me now provide you with this most telling video purportedly produced by the boys of Fatah al-Islam. If this indeed is the enemy, I will sleep soundly knowing that those who obviously don’t take themselves seriously are surely not worthy of my seriousness.
Indeed, if anything is to disrupt my slumber, it is the glossy, perfumed nonsense of those who would have me take them seriously. They are the true purveyors of pornography, fraudulently trading on the air-brushed plasticity of my most sordid fantasies and fears. I would ask them to leave us work-a-days alone. We are better off with our beer and baby-powder.
* A million points to anyone who knows the name of the club.