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Showing posts from April, 2019

Dancing Girls and Gunslingers

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Pushing open the saloon doors, I got a few whistles from the clientele. I could feel their leers through the smoky air. Head high, I sauntered to the bar, ordered a whiskey, and seated myself near the stage. I’d come to see an old friend, and I wasn’t leaving until I did. “Gentlemen… Your entertainment this evening… the Alouettes of the West!” Music swelled from the phonograph. From behind a curtain, six dolled-up dames emerged, strutting in a circle, high heels staccato against the wooden boards. Below their corsets, voluminous skirts swished as they waved to the cheering crowd. I smiled as I recognized Louise. She hadn’t changed a bit since Reno. The dancers formed a line, facing the audience, as the music changed to a familiar Offenbach operetta. Their can-can kicks revealed red underskirts beneath black-and-white dresses. The crowd erupted in hoots and hollers. Both music and spectators reached a noisy crescendo as the ladies struck their final pose, each holding a leg high