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April 25, 2004 8:03 PM   Subscribe

My Secret LIfe as a Prostitute - A diary about my hidden life as an independent escort, erotic provider, prostitute, whore, call girl, hooker ... whatever you wish to call me. Updated practically daily. A truly fascinating read, probably NSFW, but no pictures save for the artistic one at the top and very little in the way of nasty sex-type words.
posted by ashbury (39 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
Man, that makes me feel lonely.
posted by inksyndicate at 8:32 PM on April 25, 2004


This one is fun too: "diary of a london call girl"
posted by CunningLinguist at 8:40 PM on April 25, 2004


Camilla Paglia pointed out a very strange truth about prostitution. That the public has always seen only the losers who are prostitutes: mentally 'off' in some way, addicts, poor, filthy, disease-carrying wretches.

The public almost never sees prostitutes who are smart, successful in life, moderately well adjusted and peers to ordinary people in their likes, dislikes and status (as long as they are not caught out). However, she says, these are the great majority of prostitutes!

Not unreasonable, if you consider the definition of a prostitute is someone who does something that ordinary people do, that is, have sex in some way(s), except for money. The big difference here is not the sex, or the frequency of the sex with different partners, but of money.

And ordinary transactions of money are rarely attributed to ruination, addiction, poverty, filth, or disease.

Many wives have relationships with their husbands so firmly based in materialism that they are indistinguishable from prostitutes.

A traditional "mistress", semantically, was nothing more than a monogamous prostitute. But a high class mistress was a heck of a lot more, performing any number of "legitimate" roles in addition to sex. A "bar sinister" or illegitimate child of a mistress was often recognized as being a part of the family, if not entitled to inheritance.
A marriage was for money and social advancement, a mistress was for sexual enjoyment and even just intimacy.

And yet, religious "morality" aside, most societies have condemned prostitutes and prostitution as 'social ills' since civilization began, all being fooled by the same illusion.
posted by kablam at 9:39 PM on April 25, 2004 [1 favorite]


kablam, why you.....you....libertine!

I liked this quote : "....I'm happy to say that my endorphin high lasted throughout the entire drive homeand my late afternoon nap was fantastic. I guess there is some use in the world for cocky and arrogant bastards." - It's interesting that this woman gets turned on most by the guy she thinks is somewhat of an asshole.
posted by troutfishing at 9:50 PM on April 25, 2004


I remember hearing a lecture in one of my econ classes back in college - the professor was arguing that, demand and utility irregardless, women held the supply. In such, they could set the price - be it "wash the dishes," "put the kids to sleep," "take me to dinner and a show," or "$100 for a blow." Seemed interesting to me (single and naive at the time) that the women were all (almost to a 'T') agreeing, but the men (especially the married ones) were arguing.

At the time I thought the men were defending the honor of their relationships with their wives. Now I think they were in shock at being the manipulated ones and were firing back.
posted by volk at 9:51 PM on April 25, 2004


For males, attitude is everything. Females like attitude - it's a desirable trait for potential offspring to have. And the cocky, abusive male becomes all the more attractive from his message - "I don't think you're worthy of me."

This is the less refined underside of the "Tao of Steve" - while Steve employed the "demonstrate initial excellence and interest, and then ignore her completely (up to a point)." approach, here we have a guy who attracts women with his enormous ego and attitude, and by treating them like dirt. It's simply a less refined and somewhat unpleasant Tao, that's all.
posted by troutfishing at 10:02 PM on April 25, 2004


This type of thing is interesting, but I have a strong instinct to regard it as a contrivance of some pornographer. I can't say right off the bat how they hope to make money from it, or what the motivation would be, but neither can I say in honesty that I can understand why a prostitute would keep a public journal, especially one so well-designed. Suicide Girls, for example, which is mentioned on this site, is actually a subsidiary of Firegirls, although it seems for all the world like a community-generated, girl-powered site. I guess I'd just regard it with some skepticism, as with anything sex-related I find on the web.
posted by scarabic at 10:02 PM on April 25, 2004 [1 favorite]


neither can I say in honesty that I can understand why a prostitute would keep a public journal,

My two cents: the same reason anyone keeps a public journal: she wants to. It's as simple as that. I met a few prostitutes (and pornographers) through my own site and, for the most part, they're like just about anyone else.

In addition, I'd argue that because her profession is so little talked about, she's in a position of power because of people's curiousity.

It can be very empowering and liberating to be one of the only people doing what you do (in this case, being a blogging prostitute). I grew (emotionally, socially) more during my run than at any other time in my life.

One of the things I find so interesting about the London call girl site is the mixture of intimacies with people combined with sincerity with strangers. If these girls get emails similar to the ones I got during my project, half of them are "thanks for doing what you're doing--shedding some light" and the other half are "why are you doing this?! You should be ashamed of yourself." Of course, either of those types of responses add fuel to the fire.

It's a tremendous high having the freedom to share your love/lust/sex life with people and not have to care about being judged because, in essence, these people are faceless and you're anonymous. They're the teeming masses. And when you've got something they can't get elsewhere they tune in regularly. Thanks to email, you can pick and chose who you let in close and who you simply ignore.
posted by dobbs at 10:40 PM on April 25, 2004 [1 favorite]


Females like attitude

as in arrogance...? i don't think so. attitude is only attractive if it's a confident, non vain sort.

And the cocky, abusive male becomes all the more attractive from his message - "I don't think you're worthy of me."

maybe if you have a completely defective self esteem. otherwise cocky and abusive is pretty much as unattractive as it gets.

most of the whores (street, escort, or the porn variety) i've known have been smart, clean, not bonkers, or addicts, blah blah blah. hasn't stopped a lot of them from getting killed on the job tho'. most of the deceased were of the high class variety, with their own homes, expensive educations and a small pool of "known", "safe" clients. it remains a misguided, maladjusted career choice, no matter how well a person is able to rationalize it, or how skilled they are at creating a well adjusted facade.
posted by t r a c y at 10:47 PM on April 25, 2004 [1 favorite]


Comment number 5 on this post is a doozy. I really can't tell if it was written in earnest or as a parody. Apparently it was originally published on ViceLand, which, on review, is difficult overall to discern as sincerity or parody.

Looking further, the founders of Vice magazine wrote a book. Here's Amazon's editorial review:
What started out as a few Montreal drug addicts scamming welfare make-work programs back in 1994 has become a global empire of hedonism known simply as VICE. From a 16-page newspaper about punk bands and violence to stores, a clothing line, VICE Films, VICE TV, VICE Records, viceland.com, etc., VICE has become much more than a way for three guys to get laid. It's become a lifestyle of sex and drugs and rock and roll and death. This book is a collection of the irreverent, hilarious and downright scary gonzo journalism that brought three losers from the crack houses of Le Plateau to the deluxe apartments of Manhattan.
It seems Metafilter is already familiar with Viceland. Well, regardless, that was quite a rude thing to post on her weblog. I could see her disabling comments shortly after being MeFied...
posted by quasistoic at 11:08 PM on April 25, 2004


quasistoic, Viceland is the web site for Vice magazine. The book is a collection of their "best". The rag is free in some major cities. Everyone I know who reads it reads it for one reason and only one reason: the fashion DON'TS.
posted by dobbs at 11:41 PM on April 25, 2004


See also "I'd Rather Be A Whore Than An Academic" - written by a prostitute with a Ph.D. who likes her job.
posted by Asparagirl at 12:19 AM on April 26, 2004 [1 favorite]


t r a c y - let me be clear on this : this isn't what I think is desirable or best, it's just a sociobiological take on the mating game. The women - in the equation I sketched out - will be playing their own strategy as well.

"Females like attitude

as in arrogance...? i don't think so. attitude is only attractive if it's a confident, non vain sort." - Like, maybe, the peacock's tail?

My point is - there are both men and women who have learned how to yank the instinctual sexual chains of others. Though I'm not trying to promote this approach, it is very real - and it tends quite often to work. But success doesn't make this moral or ethical - it is a type of power one can choose to exert over others.
posted by troutfishing at 1:11 AM on April 26, 2004


I agree with scarabic: can't actually prove it, but this thing feels like a fake. The belle de jour / diary of a london call girl is also widely regarded as a hoax.

Genuine ex-madam Cynthia Payne wrote an interesting guardian article about it.
Most men don't talk, they're too busy concentrating. Yes, you do get some men who like to talk dirty. But they'd never say anything like this...
One of the things that makes me most suspicious about Belle de Jour is that I've never met a working girl who has kept a diary. The girls I knew were not proud of it. Most were unmarried young mums struggling through life, and they certainly didn't advertise what they did - it was their terrible secret.
All this stuff about conversations with the clients, meeting up in coffee shops beforehand, enjoying the actual sex rather than wanting the money: it's too cute. I get the impression that in real life the average john is about as interested in talking to a hooker as he is to striking up a conversation with a side of beef in a butcher's shop.
posted by TheophileEscargot at 3:48 AM on April 26, 2004 [1 favorite]


And another.
The site that taught me the rule "if you see a coworker blogging, don't try to find it."
posted by britain at 4:39 AM on April 26, 2004


I get the impression that in real life the average john is about as interested in talking to a hooker as he is to striking up a conversation with a side of beef in a butcher's shop.

Not true, in my experience. When I first moved to Bangkok, the woman in the next apartment was a Thai prostitute/ professional mistress, and she took me to some of the sex bars for Westerners. I remarked on the faux-flirtations taking place (buying drinks for the girls, roses etc) and she said that most of the western clients were uncomfortable with prostitution so had the need psychologically to dress it up as a "girlfriend experience" and pretend to themselves it wasn't just renting a vagina. She explained that many of the men would become wierdly jealous if they came back a different night and found "their" girl with a different punter, and many developed a Sir Galahad complex, wishing to take the girls away from all this ...
posted by Pericles at 4:53 AM on April 26, 2004 [1 favorite]


Too bad the Velvet Jones School Of Technology closed down. Could give these gals some pointers.
posted by jonmc at 6:41 AM on April 26, 2004


Comparisons to marriage aside, I'd like to know the real number of poor prostitutes, as opposed to middle-class ones.

Next: My witty diary about being a Ph.D who threw it all away to become a pimp.
posted by inksyndicate at 7:31 AM on April 26, 2004


Cynthia Payne's article is hilarious:

"I think this is filth, and I certainly don't want to be associated with it. I was never involved in anything like this. In my day, we did it the proper way - £25 without extras, food and drink, and a choice of ladies. We knocked off £5 for old age pensioners and we charged men half-price if they were past it, and just fancied watching. We had a high-class clientele - no rowdy kids, no yobs, all well-dressed men in suits, who knew how to respect a lady. You had to be at least 45 to come to one of my parties. It was like a vicar's tea party with sex thrown in..."

Who knows if Belle de Jour is genuine, but Ms Payne doesn't even seem qualified to judge. Her clients hardly sound like those the average London escort would be dealing with these days. She's been a hooker most of her life and she thinks Belle de Jour is 'filth'??? Where does this woman live? Between the two, Belle sounds more genuine to me.

TheophileEscargot - and anyone else who wants an insight into what the average john actually thinks and wants, check out http://www.punternet.com/ (all text but probably nsfw because of ads). It's strangely interesting for a while, but you'll probably want to have a bath afterwards.
posted by plasticbaby at 7:34 AM on April 26, 2004


I get the impression that in real life the average john is about as interested in talking to a hooker as he is to striking up a conversation with a side of beef in a butcher's shop.

I worked as a stripper for a little while in college, and I can tell you that most of the guys were lonely men who just wanted a pretty face to listen to them. Sure, there were frat boys who came in to "party", but girls made most of their money off of the "regulars" who were lonely guys who were paying for social interaction with women. The social part was at least as important as the sexual part.
posted by mdn at 8:01 AM on April 26, 2004


She makes it sound so lovely and fun, with so little risk. I find it hard to believe it really works that way. After all, condoms don't protect against *every* STD... and even "nice" guys have them.
posted by beth at 8:24 AM on April 26, 2004


dobbs - doing something like this is not quite as simple as just wanting to. If you read the FAQ you can see lots of potential reasons why a prostitute's public journal can be a dangerous thing. They suffer stigma, stalking, and it can potentially hurt their work to talk too much.

It's a tremendous high having the freedom to share your love/lust/sex life with people and not have to care about being judged

It's not her sex life. It's her work. Victory Shag was one thing, but if you see this journal as a liberated woman sharing the stories of her sexual adventures, I think you're injecting part fantasy into the equation. Sex work is work. I can see the appeal of imagining that prostitutes are all Anais Nins, but I just think it's much more likely that some pornographer is pulling our strings with this.
posted by scarabic at 8:31 AM on April 26, 2004


I have to admit - the narrative did seem bland and oddly tidy to me.

Maybe the author is building a fake life history so she can cash in by writing it up as a bestselling tell-all. Maybe she's even a he? Who knows.

Kaaaatchiiiiing!
posted by troutfishing at 8:32 AM on April 26, 2004


I think this website is all part of the viral marketing campaign for the upcoming e-book release of Velvet Jones's "How To Be A Ho."

Seriously, there's something about this woman's landscape of Starbuckses, good-natured musicians, and sweet shopkeepers that seems too good to be true.
posted by inksyndicate at 8:42 AM on April 26, 2004


Whether it's for a quick screw or the facade of a date and a tea party, you're still paying somebody to pretend to be interested in you and to be around you.

If I were the john that would make me feel pathetic, If I were the hooker that would make me feel sleazy. But that's just me.
posted by jonmc at 9:25 AM on April 26, 2004


Once, in a desperate fit of sexual lonliness in my mid-twenties I went and visited a "massage parlor" type prostitution front. I had a lot of misgivings about it, but, you know, I was a twentysomething horny male.

The first problem was that the woman acting as the "madam" asked me to select someone. Well, there was clearly one young woman who was much more attractive than the rest, but I felt really not right about picking someone out like they were a slave at market. But I really did want to be with the really attractive woman. This tells you how this story is going to go, huh?

So, anyway, I feigned disinterest and casually select the really attractive woman. She leads me to a room where she instructs me to undress while she goes and does something elsewhere. (What?) When she came back she also was nude and I was lying face-down on the bed. Then she starts a massage.

A little while later, she has me turn over and she starts to negotiate what she'll do for how much. This was very, very embarassing. I mean, the whole thing was very, very embarassing, but this was unpleasant. Especially since I had not brought nearly enough money to do anything that interesting (I had brought only $150, which, you know, seems like a lot of money). Well, we came to an agreement and then she did some mild thing that I won't describe because this is a family website; and although I was turned on and, er, ready, I was also feeling increasingly self-conscious and silly. Finally I said, "You know, this is silly. Just stop." She wanted to give me my money's worth, so she suggested that we sit in the hot tub for awhile and talk. Which we did for about fifteen minutes.

I went home sexually frustrated and very emotionally ambivalent. I thought to myself that I was glad that I was the type of person that really wasn't able to depersonalize the young woman and just use her for my own enjoyment; and I was glad that we talked like real people; but at the same time another part of me thought, "Christ, how freakin' pathetic am I?"

I can't say that I was mostly interested in someone to talk to—frankly, I was mostly horny—but I can say that I was horny for a person, not an object. I don't know how unusual that made me, or not.

The world's a strange place. People are really neat, though, and there's all kinds of 'em.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 10:26 AM on April 26, 2004 [1 favorite]


Those massage parlors are intersting places, Bligh. Back in high school I had a co-worker at the A&P named Billy, who one day bragged to us that he went to a building downtown marked "Oriental Spa," for a "massage" so he could feel like the king hoo-ha. The only details he gave is that the girl kept trying to sneak into the tossed salad bar, as it were.

But I'd also seen this guy let someone else light his farts during lunch break, so maybe he wasn't quite right.
posted by jonmc at 10:31 AM on April 26, 2004


Ashbury, care to explain the title of this post?
posted by pmurray63 at 11:00 AM on April 26, 2004


It's all about sex, baby. It comes from a song by Cole Porter.
posted by ashbury at 11:30 AM on April 26, 2004


I actually have the Nat King Cole recording, but it always stuck me as just a nonsense song. Now that I read the lyrics ... well, I guess I need Diana to explain how she sees it. I won't derail the thread any further.

Interesting link, BTW, thanks for sharing it. [/back on rails]
posted by pmurray63 at 2:29 PM on April 26, 2004


It's not her sex life. It's her work. Victory Shag was one thing, but if you see this journal as a liberated woman sharing the stories of her sexual adventures, I think you're injecting part fantasy into the equation.

I wasn't speaking to this journal specifically as it seemed your comment that I quoted wasn't, either: neither can I say in honesty that I can understand why a prostitute would keep a public journal

Sex work is work.

Yes, that's part of my point. There are thousands of people who blog about their work. What I took exception with in your comment was the branding of all prostitutes in a sort of "those people" type of way. ("I can't see why a [insert profession here] would blog" seemed very odd to me.)

Not too long ago I read an article/essay on Nerve that was written by a new call girl. She was excited about the work and I, as reader, was curious what she had to say. I don't think it's that big of a leap from freelance article writer to blogger. (Whether that Nerve person still does the job, or if she does still do it likes it, I can't say.)

I can see the appeal of imagining that prostitutes are all Anais Nins, but I just think it's much more likely that some pornographer is pulling our strings with this.

I wasn't imagining her as that by any stretch and I wasn't attempting to pass judgement on whether or not this is or is not a hoax (I have no opinion on the matter). It was just that one sentence fragment in your post that grabbed my attention.
posted by dobbs at 3:15 PM on April 26, 2004


The site that taught me the rule "if you see a coworker blogging, don't try to find it."

Jesus, fucking Christ britain. How the hell do you look your colleague in the eye anymore?
posted by dmt at 3:19 PM on April 26, 2004


Well, I guess it's not that I can't imagine why someone would want to. You're right. People blog about what they do. It's just that I can imagine good reasons (mentioned above) why someone would not want to publicize their work life, if this is their line of work. I certainly didn't mean to imply anything icky about "those people."
posted by scarabic at 3:46 PM on April 26, 2004


Suicide Girls, for example, which is mentioned on this site, is actually a subsidiary of Firegirls...

I've never heard this before. Please give more info.
posted by bingo at 5:20 PM on April 26, 2004


Jesus fucking Christ britain. How the hell do you look your colleague in the eye anymore?

Actually, I didn't google her name until after I left the place. You know: "hey, I always used to see So-and-so working on her blog. I wonder what the office is like now." And the rest, as they say, is but a comment in the MeFi post of life.
posted by britain at 7:10 PM on April 26, 2004


I've been metafiltered.

I've just read all the comments over there at www.metafilter.com regarding this blog. Apparently there are those that think I'm a male pornographer somehow looking to make a buck. Another said that the fact that I like to have a cup of coffee first and my clients actually talk to me is 'too cute.' I quote, "I get the impression that in real life the average john is about as interested in talking to a hooker as he is to striking up a conversation with a side of beef in a butcher's shop."


OK everyone, try to look busy, she's onto us!
posted by Danf at 10:04 PM on April 26, 2004 [1 favorite]


OK everyone, try to look busy, she's onto us!

And she said exactly what I said in my first post. ;)
posted by dobbs at 1:07 AM on April 27, 2004


You like this, baby? For another $50, we'll go all night.
posted by bingo at 3:57 AM on April 27, 2004


Something I don't buy about it is a lack of real complaints, or bad stories, about the job or anything. I've read other blogs from sex workers, people who were positive about their work, but they weren't all head-over-heels giggly like this one seems to be. I'm making a kind of broad generalization, but she has this kind of braggy, "Oh, my life is wonderful except for a few pits in the bowl of cherries!" kind of way of writing that just sets of a small warning bell in my head.

Of course, this may be a matter of perception on my part, and I think that it may be for other reasons that I (and others, perhaps, tho I don't mean to speak for anyone,) feel kind of negative about this blog.

Because this blog is written by a sex worker, one who keeps her day job, I assume she's attractive and rather well-off. That she's very positive, in fact braggy about this, and her complaints seem to be so minor as to be insignificant. She out and out says that her being an escort is an ego trip, how she, a moderately attractive 30something has hot men falling all over themselves to be her clients. She writes quite a bit about the wonderful sex she is having both on and off the job, how she gets free coffee from cute boys, and on and on.

Basically, she's a successful, attractive woman who has a white-collar job, has well paying hobby as an escort for almost entirely attractive, sweet, sexually experienced men, is a better lover then most other women, has an open relationship with a boyfriend, has several other sexual partners, all wonderful, and has had no difficult or painful experiences from anything in her life.

To my eyes, and maybe others, it seems to good to be true, and that, with maybe some jealously thrown in (it does exist in my case,) seems to be the reason the whole blog rings false.

That, and it seems to start awfully abruptly.
posted by Snyder at 10:57 PM on April 27, 2004 [1 favorite]


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