Once upon a time, Quansa Thompson
was just a teenager at Cardinal Ritter and Gateway High School. Now she's a 29-year-old exotic dancer on the East Coast who's filed a federal lawsuit against a strip joint for violating a Depression-era labor law.
Thompson sent us this photo of her in a 2008 calendar. Her entertainment name here is "Nia."
Make that former
exotic dancer; she says she's leaving the biz to launch her own men's magazine called, "Rare Chocolate." To interested male readers: the Maryland resident has confessed to Daily RFT
that she's single, adding, "I don't think there's a guy out here that's ready for me." Oh sweet baby Jesus.
Here's the Washington
on what good days were like at The
, the club where Thompson -- stage name "Love" -- used to
work in D.C.:
The high-rollers -- the "ballers," as
[Thompson] called them -- "would make it rain," literally showering her
with fistfuls of dollars.
On a given night, Thompson said, she
could earn as much as $1,200...[and] made $80,000 to $100,000 a year,
enough to buy herself a Grand Marquis, rent an apartment, take
college-level classes, accumulate savings and fancy herself a budding
Warren Buffett, whose biography she has read ("He's a hustler, just like
me"). Not bad for a woman who grew up in group homes in St. Louis, has
no immediate family and says she once spent eight months in prison for
The downside to working there? Well, the
article continues, the club:
paid her and the other
dancers $20 for showing up each day, with the understanding that they
could keep their tips after they paid the management a couple of fees --
$20 to the DJ, $20 to the bartender. If a dancer was late to the stage,
Thompson said, the club charged a $10 penalty. The fine for missing a
shift was $80, even if it was because of an illness...
Thompson complained to the owner, she got canned. She retained a
lawyer, who concluded that even though strip clubs technically consider
dancers "independent contractors," the club rules treat them as if they
were essentially employees.
That would entitle them, under the
Federal Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, to minimum wage (which the
girls weren't getting if you do the math). To view the complaint filed by Thompson in federal district court, click here
Thompson tells Daily
she was born and raised here in St. Louis, before dropping out
in ninth grade and moving east (she now lives between Baltimore and
D.C.) She comes back to visit St. Louis a couple times a year to see her
extended family in both the city and the county.
she's done with dancing, and wants to publish her magazine, which she
says will have topics that relate to men and their problems - money,
women, fashion, etc. She told the Post
that it would be called "Rare
Chocolate," and would be "devoted to showing off beautiful women of
color. 'Cosmo for men,' she
(Side note, if you're interested: Washington City Paper
the capital's alt-weekly, has blasted the Post
for what it
considered a sexist coverage of Thompson's lawsuit; click here