Life in the Big Four, Part V: Hotel Love

Quick! You are feeling romantic, and your significant other is nowhere to be found!!!!! What do you do?!?!

If your first thought is the following: "Walk out of the hotel room, take the elevator down to the lobby, slip $10 to the hotel clerk for an adult movie, and go back to your room,".........................congratulations, you are an auditor.

This is not a normal reaction, unless you are out of town at least 40 weeks per year. To be honest, I'm not sure that it is a normal reaction even then, but I don't plan on traveling down that road. I'm not one to judge.

There's another option....and that is to find a strip club at any cost. If you travel a lot, you're likely in luck. The odds are good that your immediate superior (whether a senior or manager) is addicted to strip clubs.

Let me reiterate that most of my clients are manufacturing clients. The astute reader may have deduced that manufacturers tend locate their plants far from major urban centers. This same reader may have further guessed that good strip clubs tend to be located in major urban centers.

The point that I am trying to get across is the following: There are very few rural manufacturing towns with famous strip clubs.

This can be disorienting for a professional who makes a mediocre income.

Perhaps an analogy is in order. Back when you were a student, you bought crappy whiskey because it was cheap. If times were extremely bad, you searched your secret hiding place in the fraternity house ceiling panels for leftover alcohol. My point is this – you always had access to alcohol, even if it was horrible quality.

When you travel to a small rural town, you have no access to any sort of strip clubs, even if you're willing to settle for poor quality. And take it from me, by Week 118 on the road, your definition of "quality" changes.

If one of these towns happens to have a gentleman's club, consider yourself lucky. Or unlucky. It all depends on your frame of reference.

With that background (which was likely not needed for you professional Big4s out there), my goal is to give the reader my first professional experience at a strip club. Much more entertaining moments will be elaborated on in future posts.

I had just started in audit. I was working in a small college town on a small client, on a team with 3-4 people. On our 5th week, myself and my senior managed to find a strip club in this town.

The scene is still burned into my brain, and I likely wouldn't believe if it if I had not lived through it. This particular strip club was located in a trailer in the parking lot of a truck stop. Let me repeat that. This strip club was in a trailer in the parking lot of a truck stop. On the door was a cardboard sign reading "Stripers Wanted."

Let me preface this by mentioning that both myself and the senior were fairly drunk upon arrival. Neither of us were particularly sure what a "striper" was, but we entered anyway.

Inside the trailer was a bar with one extremely obese guy with a beard serving a bartender, and two "stripers" dancing on a pole at the other end of the trailer. Back over at the bar were three extremely overweight truck drivers.

I was curious as to why the trailer was not tilted sideways, given the obvious weight displacement inside, but somehow thought better than to think out loud. My senior, a 90-lb Asian-American with a worse drinking problem than me, had no such qualms. To this day, I believe that the only reason we were not killed that night is that killing my senior could have been construed as a hate crime.

I won't repeat much of what we saw there, or the vile words that emerged from the mouth of my senior, except to give the dear reader the following two facts:

1. In a small town where the clientèle tends to be thin, "stripers" tend to engage in some really filthy, unspeakable activities.
2. Never let an alcoholic senior with 3 DUIs on his record drive home.

I'm going to go cry myself to sleep now.

* This is the fifth in a series of reminiscences about life in the Big Four accounting firms. The author has asked to remain anonymous. The opinions expressed in this article are not representative of the AccountingWEB editorial staff.

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