Local Wire

Ladies Night

Page 3 of 4

Suddenly, Cookie seizes my shoulder. "Quick, let's go T.P. Punk's truck while she's distracted!"

Well, we did buy all that red crepe paper and those letter magnets earlier . . .

Outside, CooKie quickly starts draping the red paper all over the SUV while I begin spelling out "YOUR MOM EATS GREAT PUSSY" in big, colorful magnetic letters across the driver's side. A girl with glasses gets out of the car next to us and asks CooKie what she's doing.

"It's okay, we know her," CooKie says. "Help me!"

The girl looks at CooKie, who's bent over the hood with her boobs almost hanging out, and stutters, "Uh, okay. Sure . . ."

The two of them make short work of the ream of crepe paper, and then CooKie hands me her camera and poses proudly next to her work.

We go back in the bar and commence looking for a hot woman. After all four of us come up short, we decide it's time for the main event: Boobie.

But first, Cookie wants to see Punk's reaction to our friendly vandalism. After seeing the message on her truck, Punk screams at CooKie, "My mom eats great pussy, huh? Yeah, well, your mom doesn't, and I KNOW!"

We chuckle all the way to Club Vibe.

Boobie only started on June 8, but I'd been seeing it hyped on MySpace for months. Not only was the name catchy — I mean, who doesn't love some Boobie? — but the flier advertised a "spectacular sound and light show." Oh, yeah, and hot women.

Club Vibe opened where Phoenix's most celebrated lesbian bar, Ain't Nobody's Bizness, used to be — in a strip mall with a bowling alley off Indian School. In its heyday, "The Biz" was the lesbian nightspot, with lines winding down the sidewalk on some nights and hardly any room on the dance floor.

Last year, the space was sold to two gay men, who turned it into Club Vibe. The pair has admittedly been struggling to attract the lesbian crowd. CooKie thinks the owners have been struggling because lesbians are loyal to the lesbian owners of other clubs and won't support something owned by gay men.

I don't know if that's necessarily true, but I do know that Club Vibe's at least been attempting to find a niche, spinning heavy doses of Latin pop and reggaeton, trying to draw in the lesbian Latina crowd (not a bad idea, as Paco Paco and Karamba pretty much have a monopoly on the gay Latino scene). This Boobie weekly, which is put on by Carnival Latino and AZ Club Lipstick, seems to have the most potential for success, offering live DJ mixes, $2 domestic pitchers, raffles for tickets to Phoenix Mercury basketball games, and no cover before 10:30 p.m. (it costs $5 after that).

We arrive around midnight, which is high-action time at most clubs. But here, the action is moderate. There are only about 40 people (of both genders), and continuous scoping of the bar reveals only one really sexy woman — a tiny Latina in a tight, white dress who's jiggling like Jell-O out on the dance floor to Shakira's "Hips Don't Lie." There's a handful of other attractive gals, and at least a dozen people dancing, but the vibe is otherwise low-key.

Playa and Punk dance for a few songs, and CooKie and I go fool around in the bathroom. Then we sit at the bar and she sends text messages to people while I watch the hot Latina. It's not long before my companions complain of boredom. CooKie gives me the breakdown. "Okay, so zGirl Club had the most hot chicks, and there are a handful of hot chicks here. Cash Inn and e-Lounge were eh. But, baby, this Boobie thing is lame."

One of the problems may be the fact that while reggaeton star Daddy Yankee's blaring out of the sound system, the televisions above the bar are showing muted Ozzy Osbourne videos. Some gay bars in town, like Velocity and Plazma, use their television screens to show footage of hot, half-naked men. So if Club Vibe's gonna shoot for the whole "hot Latina" vibe, they oughtta put images of sexy spitfires on their screens instead of a middle-aged British metal singer.

And there's another drawback: The size of the club has been cut almost in half since it ceased being The Biz. Total capacity is now only 200 people — probably not enough for the Valley's prominent promoters, and certainly not enough for out-of-town promoters like L.A.'s "GirlBar," which books special events around Phoenix every couple of months. When the building housed The Biz, it had a fenced-off, all-ages section. Many people of drinking age grumbled about the chain-link segregation, but that area was packed almost every night. Now, there's not a single all-ages lesbian bar in town. Maybe opening their doors to the 18-and-over gay crowd that doesn't have anywhere else to go would help business (just not the bar tabs, which unfortunately, are the lifeblood of most clubs).

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Niki D'Andrea has covered subjects including drug culture, women's basketball, pirate radio stations, Scottsdale staycations, and fine wine. She has worked at both New Times and Phoenix Magazine, and is now a freelancer.
Contact: Niki D'Andrea