Some years ago, 1994 or thereabouts, I attended a professional conference in San Jose, California. I recall fondly the gorgeous weather, warm sunshine and cloudless blue skies every day, and the wonderful downtown nightlife, located so conveniently within walking distance of our hotel. The conference itself, not so memorable; but then, few are.
One evening, during one of our routine explorations of said nightlife, my traveling companion and I wandered into a fairly large nightclub, of which the name now escapes me. We were greeted at the door by the customary bevy of bouncers one expects at such establishments. But here was something different, notable: a young woman who appeared to be a senior, or perhaps the lead, bouncer. Neither large nor small, she was slender yet aptly muscled, friendly enough but with an intense look about her. Also striking was how she commanded the respect of her fellow bouncers and regular patrons alike. I was, as routine visitors to this blog have no doubt already surmised, quite fascinated.
After the door area had cleared out somewhat, and I had steeled for myself sufficient nerve, I went up to speak with her. I learned that she was an accomplished martial artist (holder of several black belts) working part-time then as a bouncer, if I remember correctly to support herself while she completed a college degree. She was not only friendly and courteous but also very modest; obviously not one to brag, she downplayed her role as a bouncer. Later, back at our table, one of the male bouncers made her standing crystal-clear to us: she was not someone to trifle with, and in fact had, on more than one occasion, dispatched a belligerent male drunk without need of any assistance.
Though I have no idea why someone would want to do it-the odd hours and generally obnoxious music being two strikes against it, to my mind-I know that there are many athletic women, more than a few frequent this blog, who are unimpeachably qualified for bouncer work, much like the young woman I met in San Jose so long ago, and the young woman who is the focus of the following clip, Nicki Dawes: