The Shelf Life of a Bangkok Gogo Dancer

What up homies, I’m Seven. Just livin’ the red-light dream here in Thailand, aka the greatest country in the world. If you can’t get here for whatever reason, feel free to live vicariously through me. Lately I’ve had gogo dancers on my mind. OK let’s talk real—gogo dancers are always on my mind. But recently I’ve been contemplating what factors contribute to the short career of a gal on the pole. With the obvious exceptions (I’m talking about that one shriveled old hag in some gogos whose daughter and granddaughter also work at that gogo), dancers have roughly the same career length as a professional American football player (if you also count their college years). Most are off the pole before age 28.

All the girls in my current harem were once gogo dancers. A few—the younger ones—still are. But my core group of regulars have all quit the neon jungle and taken up day jobs. Oil sells noodles. Bum’s a hostess at a restaurant. Taitle cleans houses. Bow works in a coffee shop. The first three are 25 years old, and have had their fill of gogo life. Bow ran from the red-light really early—she’s 21. Mew had to quit to stay home and look after her sister. Ploy got knocked up and is now a stay-at-home-mom. Momay got herself a sugar daddy who not only bought her fake boobs but also pays her a monthly stipend to stay home all day taking selfies in low-cut shirts. One of my Ices got hitched. And I just learned that Rose, who’s way too young to retire (she’s 20), has also quit, citing laziness, boredom, and constant exhaustion. She also said she’d had enough of farang, though she said it while climbing into my bed, so I’m not sure how sincere she is. And confidentially, I bet she’ll be back in the red-light sooner than she thinks.


Early retirement is a mistake a lot of girls make. They get burnt out, or they have a fight with a coworker, or a bad experience with a customer and suddenly they want to make something of themselves. The best example of this is my friend Meow. When I first met her, she was dancing at Bada Bing. She had bright eyes, a big smile, a sweet, beguiling personality, and seemed well-suited to the gogo habitat. But she confided that by day she was a uni student, and the gogo was just a means to work her way through school. She said she was studying to be a paralegal, and as soon as she graduated she’d be off the pole and on the bar—or whatever the euphemism is for working in a lawyer’s office. That was four years ago. Since then, she’s acquired a massive back tattoo and fake tits, and moved from Bing to Glamour. She did disappear for a few months, and I thought for sure she was working for some attorney elsewhere in Silom. But then she resurfaced again and is once more a regular fixture in the Pong. The other day, out of curiosity, I asked her if she was still in school. Turns out she finished a long time ago, but the fact is, office work just doesn’t pay as much as the red-light.


And that paints a picture of the tug-of-war that plays out in the minds of gogo dancers in their mid-twenties. To pole or not to pole—that is the question. They’re sick and tired of customers, whiskey binges, loud music, g-strings, and petty squabbles, yet they can’t wean themselves off the fast easy cash. It’s totally understandable. My hope is always that they’ll stay as long as their looks hold on. It’s heartbreaking to see a girl retire in her prime. Which is why I was so pleased to see Biw—formerly the best bootie in The Strip—make her sullen return to the stage in a different gogo after breaking up with her boyfriend. When she quit, my loins ached at the thought of never seeing that supremely splendiferous ass again. Now I ache with desire at the sight of it. The latter is much more preferable.

Right now my harem is comprised of half new girls and half longtime bang buddies. As I’ve said, all of the longtimers have abandoned the red-light, and some of the newbies are already talking about leaving the life. Outwardly I support whatever they choose to do, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t feel a little twinge of panic every time a hottie tells me she’s hanging up her heels. The gogos of today don’t seem as chock full of 10s as they did just a few years ago. It’s a troubling trend for someone like me—a crusty, aging whoremonger addicted to the RLD. I fear that one day in the future my harem will dwindle to nothing and I will no longer be able to lure in new girls with my rickety old rod and reel. Or worse yet, the stage will be comprised of only ugly girls. What will I do then? Become monogamous? Move back to Los Angeles? To hell with that! It might be time to start recruiting directly from the countryside. Maybe I’ll start a talent agency and scour the tiny villages of Isaan for each new crop of beautiful bevvies to populate the poles of the red-lights. It’d be a tough job, but somebody’s got to do it. I’ll keep you posted.


In the meantime, let’s keep our fingers crossed and hope the red-light stays young and beautiful, and let’s all be thankful for another day above ground, another day with working parts, another day in BKK. Cheers, folks! (Below is a collection of gogo dancers we lost in the last year—and by lost, I mean they got day jobs. You will be missed! Some were kind enough to pose as sexy ninjas for me in some photo shoots. You can view them on my blog page at