It has been almost two years now that I decided to cut off contact with Hima B. I haven't made a public blog post about it. For the sake of transparency, I have decided to do that now.
As a bit of background, Hima B. sued a bunch of strip clubs in California, did some labor activism and started to make a documentary film about it. She did some press for the documentary, which lead me to contacting her back in 2014. I was interested in my stripper labor rights and wanted insight from someone who had more experience in that subject. We spoke every so often for a couple of years. She gave me some invaluable advice and tips that helped me very much. I donated thousands of dollars to what I thought was the production of the film, License to Pimp. Hima then decided to come out to Minnesota for a few days in the Summer of 2017, to film me for the documentary.
While I was living in Minnesota, I slept in places such as weekly suites, camping grounds and my vehicle. When Hima and I were planning her trip, she asked me if we could share a motel room together. That creeped me out, so I said we would be camping during her trip. She then asked if she could share a tent with me. That is also very creepy and disgusting. I purchased a tent for her and put it on the other end of our camping site. Hima seemed offended at not being able to share a tent with me. In hindsight, I should have just cut off communication with her prior to the trip.
Hima grilled me on my sleeping situation while in Minnesota. Since we were staying at a KOA that I didn't normally stay at for consecutive days, and since I was unfamiliar with the daily events there, she expressed that she did not believe I had ever stayed there at all. She was visibly angry about sleeping in her own tent, which I placed on the opposite side of the site from where my tent was. She didn't have a lot of camping experience, thought a bear might approach us at KOA, and didn't understand why she could not sleep in my tent or closer to me. Prior to her trip, I offered to pick her up at a motel each morning before shooting, but she didn't want to do that, because she wanted to stay with me. That was very disturbing to experience and I regret not just ending the filming because of that.
Hima accused me of lying in several other instances. For example, because I needed to use GPS to navigate around downtown Minneapolis to get to the federal building where the NLRB office is headquartered, she thought perhaps I didn't actually have open NLRB cases like I said I did.
Simple things, such as the relatively young age my progenitors were when I was born, seemed to confuse Hima. I was not comfortable sharing personal information with her, because it was met with disbelief or criticism.
Since my phone friendship with Hima prior to her visit was one of casual friends, I sometimes divulged things to her about my cases. She wrote these things down without my permission or consent. When I requested that she not do that, she did it anyway. She was very pushy in a number of other ways.
As a friend, I discussed with her how I sometimes enjoy exploring abandoned buildings. While she was filming me, she insisted that she get footage of me trespassing in abandoned buildings. I refused to do this. It bothered me that I had to say no to her more than once about it.
While filming in downtown Minneapolis, we were going to get footage inside the federal building at the NLRB office. I told the security guard the reason for our visit when he asked. He didn't let us in, because filming was not allowed. Hima began yelling at and scolding me after we left, because she thought I should have lied to him so we could be let in. I had an open case with the Minneapolis NLRB. The interests of my relationship with the NLRB and the federal crime of lying to a cop did not seem to concern Hima.
Hima's lack of concern for my cases manifested itself in several other ways. For example, I repeatedly told her that she wasn't allowed to film conversations with my attorney. While she was visiting and I had a phone conversation scheduled with my attorney, Hima asked if she could record the conversation. I said no. She asked if she could film just me talking to him. I said no. She forgot a few minutes later and asked again, to which I replied no.
During my Minnesota cases, there was a possibility that Hima was going to get subpoenaed, because of her contact with me and other dancers. She insisted that I lie to judges about knowing her, so she wouldn't have to make the trip out to Minnesota, in the event that she was subpoenaed. I had no intention to ever do that, because I wasn't willing to jeopardize my cases in that way. It was very obvious and documented that we did know each other. Fortunately, she was never subpoenaed.
During Hima's visit to Minnesota, I began to understand that she isn't much of an actual filmmaker. She exhibited very little knowledge about how to operate her camera and sound equipment, which wasted lots of time and energy during her visit. I spent money on gas for my vehicle, and camping space. She purchased discount batteries that would not work, requiring us to sit around for several hours each day, charging things. She spent several hours at three different thrift stores in Minnesota, treating her trip as a vacation just as much as an opportunity to get footage. This was a waste of my time, energy and money.
Hima spoke disrespectfully about past subjects in her documentary, such as Daisy Anarchy. Hima vaguely told me that she lost contact with Daisy, and informed me that she believed Daisy had lied about experiencing sexual assault. I thought it was rather disgusting of Hima to share that with me, and I made a mental note to never discuss with her any personal matters of assault, since she seemed to have a difficult time believing survivors.
Hima seemed to be very stressed out being in Minnesota, which caused her to express daily criticisms of the residents who lived there, picking apart things such as their demographic backgrounds, lifestyles and interests. It wasn't exactly the type of open investigative journalist sentiment I'd think one should have when exploring new places.
After Hima left Minnesota, I felt salty and ill, like I had been repeatedly violated and disrespected. I let this person into my life temporarily, and she did not respect my boundaries. I blocked her on facebook and social media. I would not pick up my phone when she called. Over the next couple of months, she continued to call me. I would not answer the phone, so she began calling me on a restricted number. When I realized it was her after I answered, I told her I would call her back in a few minutes. She sternly commanded me to call her back, before I hung up and did not call her back. To my relief, eventually she stopped contacting me.
There aren't too many people who have sued as many strip clubs that I have, and who can discuss the experiences with me in an empathetic way. Stripper labor rights activism is one of the most traumatizing things I have experienced in life. For a time, Hima was a great confidant to have. However, her bizarre behaviors and total disrespect for my boundaries caused me to cut off contact. The film will probably never finish, and it's unfortunate to have been a donor to the film. She’s no documentarian. I appreciate the work she has done suing California strip clubs and educating the public, but I hope she never contacts me again.