Changes in the Curriculum

I haven’t read all of your posts about The Biz, but of the ones I have read the tone over time seems to be changing from being pretty matter of fact about your sessions to one of “I can’t believe I’m putting up with this shit.” 

                                                                 —From an email sent to me by a concerned reader

      Yup.  

      I did a little content analysis of recent my blog posts.   The results startled me.  I did not anticipate that they would contain so many references to death (which is odd, since I’m the one who wrote them, after all).  The tone is often angry or morbid.  

      I think it’s time for me to back off. 

  I can’t afford to quit entirely, but there are things that I can do to minimize the stress and unpleasant aspects of my Secret Job.  

        First, I need to keep out of the Studio as much as possible.  The Dungeon Drama is getting me down–truly, I could write a dissertation about its shockingly dysfunctional organizational culture.  I need to work one shift a week in order to keep my locker and session privileges, so I sat down with the owner and we worked something out.  There is a good library two blocks away from the Studio.  When I’m on shift, I am going to spend my time there, on the pretext that I am working under deadline on a research project.  If they need me, they can call me and I’ll be there in five minutes.  They know that they can rely on me to be there when I say that I will be there.  

      Unless something–or someone–that sounds exceptionally fun falls into my lap, I am not accepting new clients.  

     I have an informal ranking system for clients.  This is how it goes:

      I have some regular clients whose company I truly enjoy.   They don’t stress me out at all.  Those guys can stay and see me whenever they want.  

    The “barely tolerable” ones–like Mr. Crocodile Tears from San Fran–were collectively herded out of their “Only See In Times of Acute Financial Distress” gulag at 4 AM this morning, put up against the wall, and shot.  I fired about ten of them via politely-worded email.  Predictably, because most of them are either obtuse or malignant boundaries-pushing assholes, they are already flooding my email box with queries about why they were let go.  I cannot decide whether or not it would be therapeutic for me to answer them in frank and explicit fashion.

    The cure for depression is work.  I volunteered to “Care For Young Trees” in NYC parks.  This means that I dig up weeds, pick up trash, and inspect bark for parasites, with periodic breaks to re-apply sunscreen.  I was going to volunteer at the Adult Literacy program, but until I stop feeling crabby, I don’t think I should inflict myself upon unsuspecting strangers.  

    I feel like this owl:



When I want to feel like this owl:

 

You Quit When You’re Ready

UPDATE 7:00 PM:

   Before I forget: two more things that set up this mad second-guessing–

     A woman I work with at the Studio, “Katherine,” is in a new relationship with a guy she met through a popular online dating site.  He is a professional chef who also shares partial ownership of his own restaurant.  

     They met in the Spring.  He’s crazy about her.

      She hasn’t told him that she works at the Studio.  He thinks that she works in “customer service.”  While that job description is not necessarily untrue, it is not, shall we say, fully representative.   I like Katherine quite a bit, but she is engaging in a lie by omission. 

      It’s stressing her out…but that doesn’t make it okay.  I am telling her, Look, the later you wait, the worse it will be.  

       And then I was supposed to go on a date this weekend with a professor and writer who also works at my tutoring center.  Nothing major, just a dinner-and-movie date.  We were going to see this new  documentary film (I love documentaries) Blackfish, about an Orca whale in a Sea World hell in Orlando.  The Orca has killed three people.  I feel sad for their families, but as far as I’m concerned, GO SHAMU GO!  If I was a porpoise, I’d kill humans on basic principle whenever I had the chance.  

      They are intelligent and emotional creatures.  They shouldn’t be living in a fuckin concrete bathtub.  I guess the performance-trick-training gives them something to do with their energy and big brains  rather than only languishing in the SeaWorld Supermax Prison they’re in, but FFS.


       Anyway…I thought about the date…and I thought about the conversations it could include.  I could never tell him about what I do at the Studio.  He could blab about it to other colleagues. If I don’t mention it, and things go well and something develops between us…do I tell him later, and risk rejection?  Do I hide it and hope he never finds out?  I am very, very good at hiding things.

       All I wanted to do was see a movie, man.

      Finally: I’ve done a significant amount of politics and campaign work.  The Census, Planned Parenthood, internships, Campaign Corps, journalism.  Protest movements.  Other stuff.  

       I couldn’t do it the last two election seasons because I knew that if I was exposed, I would bring shame and scrutiny down upon my candidate/party/organization.  

       Must think about this…

     *                              *                                      *                           *



    I met a woman in AA who was in the Biz for over ten years.  Not prodomme, but as an escort and sensual massage.  She quit doing it seven months after she got sober, when she was approximately my age.  

     I took her out for lunch.  I wanted to hear what she had to say.

     She did not mince words.

     “You have to get out as soon as possible.  You cannot stay sober in that industry.  There is no excuse.”

       I glared at her from across the table.  I did not like being told by a complete stranger what I am and am not capable of.  

      “You have an excellent education and credentials.  When I quit, I had a High School degree and I’d never worked in a 9-to-5 job.  I was terrified because I had no idea how I was going to support myself.  Do you have any idea how crazy you sound to have all of the education and skills that you have, and to still be doing this?”

      I felt defensive and a little angry.  Crazy?  Me?  Compared to who?  All those fruitbats in the Rooms?  Half those crazy bitches in the Studio?  Compared to this middle-aged woman sitting across from me, who in addition to being an alcoholic also had a major cocaine problem and just told me stories about being a full-service escort and also having a pimp at one time who would beat her up?  I teach in a classroom!  I teach the GRE!  I’m a nice normal person!  A nice sane individual!

      “I just do it part-time.  I have other jobs.  It supplements my income,” I said.

       “Rationalization.  You can supplement your income by working as a dog-walker.  You don’t need to be doing this.  You have no idea how this is truly affecting you.”

        “Please do not patronize me.  What, are you saying I have false consciousness or something?”

         “That is exactly what I’m saying.  I needed ten years of therapy when I got out.”

         Well, maybe you were crazy to begin with, I thought, but I didn’t say that.  I didn’t want to be rude.  

         “Look at what you are doing,” she went on.  “People are paying you to abuse them.  Or they pay to abuse you.” 

        That pissed me off.  “Please!  I have morals.  I don’t hurt anyone.  This is not abuse.”

       “What is it, then?”

        “Look, I know the way sadomasochism looks to outsiders.  I know that it looks either scary or absurd.  But it’s not necessarily bad.  It is enjoyable.”

       “It is entirely possible to enjoy abuse and abusing others.”

       “I’ve had abusive clients and I’ve been in abusive relationships. I can tell the difference.”

        “What is the difference?” she asked.

        “Abuse hurts and degrades the soul.  I don’t feel bad when I have a good session with a client.  I feel good.  I feel happy.”

        “You are black and blue, Margo.”

         “What am I supposed to do?  Change my entire sexuality?  This is the way I was imprinted.  It is crucial to my sexual functioning.  Why should I give it up if I don’t have to?  It gives me joy.”

      “Obsessions can be fun.  As alcoholics, we both know all about that.  Tell me: why are you doing this professionally?”

      “Repetition compulsion and the money is helpful.”

      “Exactly.  You are acting out.  You are spinning in place.  You cannot do this and move forward with your life.  If you want to get better, you will have to quit.  Even if you don’t drink, you are not engaging in sober behavior when you do this.  Margo, you are out of control.  You are still stuck in it, so you don’t see it clearly, from the outside.”  

        I was furious.  Alcoholics don’t like to be told that they can’t drink.  They go: mind your own fucking business.  I’ll quit when I’m ready.  I’ll quit when I’m ready, and not a day before.

      She continued: “My best advice to you is that as long as you keep doing this professionally, you need to be doing a lot of AA at the same time.  It will support you and sustain you, give you perspective.  You need to keep one foot in the normal world while you do this.  You are in great danger, Margo.”

       “What?  Violence?  Like a client could hurt me?”  All sex workers fear violence.  Or at least all the ones I’ve talked to about it.

      “That too, but also emotional danger.”

       I know in my heart that she is right.  I’ve known these truths for a long, long time.  

       The Awful Truth.  This is holding me back.  I’m stuck in a holding pattern like a jet over an airport, waiting for clearance to land.  I cannot move forward in my career–you know, what I went to college for–as long as I keep doing professional S&M, because if I’m exposed, it will nuke my professional reputation.  

        I cannot have love in my life, because no healthy man is going to put up with it (me doing BDSM with a lot of random guys, even if they are clients).  And if I am spending so much energy doing this, what am I going to have to give to another person?  

       And sex work is isolating.  It is, and not just because it’s illegal or verboten to talk about.  And isolation is lethal.  Isolation will get you in the end.  

       But you quit when you’re ready.  

       You quit when you’re ready, and not a moment before.  

Guest Message from the Surgeon

      Guest Message from the Surgeon:

       Hey!  I’m not sure what you assholes think is going on here, but I am going to explain what is happening for you.  

        I am going to win this thing, because I must win at EVERYTHING!  Even a “Biggest Jerk” contest! I am not going to lose a ‘Biggest Jerk’ contest to some bush-league philanderer MATH GEEK who wears L.L. Bean and tasseled loafers.  

      His first wife ran off and left him.  How pathetic is that?  If a woman did that to me, she wouldn’t make it out the door–because she’d be dead!  NOBODY dumps me!  I always dump her!  Preferably in a painful and devastating fashion.  I do it because I hate my mother.  Revenge.  It’s all about revenge.  

      Anyway…you losers need to change your votes.  I am not losing this contest to the math geek.  As a gesture of my appreciation for your support, I will give you $0.50 off any surgical procedure.  No, I don’t take Medicare or Medicaid.  Are you out of your fucking mind?  What’s next?  Are we going to eat lunch at McDonald’s?  With the Math Geek?  

      What, do I need to persuade you?  Do you know who you’re dealing with?  Okay, fine: one time, in Miami, Miss Margo watched me get a valet driver fired from his job on the spot because he irritated me.  He cried.  It made me feel happy inside.  Triumphant! And the car wasn’t even mine, lol.  It was a rental. 

       When Miss Margo weighed 110 lbs and stopped menstruating, I thought that she looked great!  I encouraged her to get skinnier!  And you know that what I say goes! She was on a whiskey-and-pineapple diet for 2 years while she was in a Ph.D. program.  She’d pass out at school.  She looked beautiful and the sex was fantastic. 

        One time, I had her seduce my enemy at the major annual conference of my profession.  This made me feel very powerful.  I also humiliated my enemy’s protege when I was reviewing his research as a panel discussant. I savaged him mercilessly in front of two hundred people.  It took three people to mop up the blood when I was done. 

        Change your votes, people!  I am not going to lose to the Math Geek!  What is it going to take to get this done?  Money?  Do you need to hear from my lawyer?  What?  $0.50 off any major surgical procedure! 

        …..I will concede, however, that borrowing the cockatoo to bring over to Margo’s apartment was an idea so slimy and shameless that not even I could have come up with it.  So kudos on that one, Pythagoras.    

       Did I ever tell you that when I got tired of him, I dumped my Amazon parrot at the pound? 

        Change your vote.  I must win.  What, do I need to make you cry?

        Best regards,

       The Surgeon

       Miss Margo Note: The above was, of course, penned by me and it is satire.  A big joke.  Might be in bad taste.  I can’t tell.  The Surgeon really would sound like that, though.  I can channel him very well.  

      Me, I’m rooting for the Mathematician.  Or myself.  I am surprised that I haven’t gotten any votes, because I keep picking these assholes.  

       The Surgeon gave me money for tuition and textbooks when I needed it.  He also took me lots of places.  He could be nice.

Mr. Crush Has Some Sort of Complex

Update 9:30 PM

    Mistress C. almost murdered me today.

     I went to the Studio to pick up some clothes to take for dry cleaning.  I didn’t even know she was there.       

      I was making conversation with some other mistresses in the locker room.  Soon, I started to complain about Mr. Crush, and his “Do you need some money?” texts.

     Mistress C. emerged out of nowhere and stood in the doorway. How appropriate. 

       “Wait, wait, wait, Red,” she said.  “Did I just hear you say that this loser jerk offered to give you money twice, without a session, and you didn’t take it..?  Did I just hear that?”

       C. can be very intimidating.  She is gorgeous, young, psychologically unstable, quite intelligent (but not very formally educated), and impulsive (she does keep her head, however).  She is as fearless as a teenage boy.  Anyone who wants to fight with this chick is out of their mind.  I would honestly prefer to physically fight with a random man off the street than Mistress C.  I’d lose in either case, but it is unlikely that a random male would be as cruel as C…were she in the mood. 

        “He’s an emotional vampire!  He wants to be my boyfriend!  He’s clingy and needy!” I exclaimed. 

         “SO WHAT!  Have I taught you nothing?  You make the rules.  You make the boundaries.  He wants to give you money…?  TAKE IT!  He offered twice because he wants to give it. Stop assuming you know what goes on in these clients’ heads.  Maybe he has a fantasy of being a sugar daddy.  Maybe he wants to be your boyfriend.  Maybe he likes the fantasy of taking care of a struggling young woman fresh out of grad school.  Maybe he gets off on the idea that if his ex-wife knew he was involved with you, she’d be jealous.  WHO KNOWS?  SO WHAT?  

        “He has a crush on you.  SO WHAT?  He’s not an idiot.  He can spend his money however he wants.  That is not your responsibility.  Even if he gives you the money that is supposed to go into his 401k, that is not your responsibility.  

      “This guy is texting you and sending you emails and you are NOT CHARGING HIM for the interaction?  RED!  You fucking masochist!  Don’t be a loser!  This guy is begging to give you cash!  Cash money!  Do you LIKE being broke?  Do you enjoy being broke and negotiating with ConEd for a payment plan?  Thank God I never finished my degree so I’m not as STUPID as you.  All that school and you won’t let a man give you free money.

      “Take his money.  Make him happy.  Take everything you can,” said Mistress C. 

        I don’t know if I can take C.’s advice.  I just don’t know if I have it in me.  My personality is…not like hers.

      She does have a point, however.  She has a very good, good point.  

        I am not a good businesswoman.  And I guess I have too much heart.  

                   *                                  *                                * 

I wasn’t going to write about Mr. Crush again, but he just did something very ODD.  Very weird client behavior.  I can’t make heads or tails out of it. 

      I fired Mr. Crush because he was driving me batty.  It’s a long story.  I wrote three drafts about him, but didn’t publish them on this blog because I decided that I didn’t want to be unkind.  

     The short story is this: Mr. Crush is a sad, lonely man who really really really needs some love.

      Lest you think: Miss Margo!  You are a sad, lonely girl who really really really needs some love!  So what’s wrong with that?

       I’ll tell you what’s wrong with it: I don’t push myself on people. This is very difficult to describe.  I feel myself getting upset just writing about my experiences with Mr. Crush, which is weird because he is not the scariest or most disturbed client I’ve ever had–not by a longshot.  But this man is like some sort of emotional vampire.  I’ve never seen this level of emotional neediness in a client. I don’t know what to make of it.  The guy needs a good psychologist and a Golden Retriever.  

      Why am I getting upset and angry…?  

       Well, let me ask: at what point does expecting someone to provide more intimacy than they are prepared to give become ABUSIVE?

       Mr. Crush asked a lot out of me.  Mr. Crush wanted an All-Access VIP Backstage Pass to my very goddamned soul.  Like we were in a relationship, like he was my boyfriend.  He pushed my sexual boundaries, too, but I could handle that–it happens, I can manage it, this isn’t my first rodeo.  

      At our last (and I do mean last, as in final) session, I had to field questions such as:

      “What do I seem like to you?  Sometimes I don’t think that I know myself.”

       “Do you think I am attractive?”

       “I’d like to help you with your job search.  Want me to take a look at your resume?  A writing sample?”

        “How old do you think I am?”  (FYI: Mr. Crush is almost twice my age…but he struck me, emotionally, as someone much younger than he is. Much younger.  I’m not talking “young at heart.”  For all his book smarts and creativity, I felt like I was dealing with someone my age.  Or younger.)

       Look, dude.  I just work here, okay? 

       He also wanted the session to be about “mutual fantasy fulfillment,” asking me via email the most dreaded question anyone can ask a sex worker: What do YOU want to do?

       Oh, but it was much more complex than that…much more detailed and invasive.  Mr. Crush is an intelligent gent.  He is a fan of David Foster Wallace and postmodern poetry.  He wanted me to tell him how I desired to be treated.  He wasn’t asking for technical instruction on how to be a competent BDSM dominant–that would be fine, I’ve taught skills to lots of people.  Noooooo, Mr. Crush wanted access to my private sexuality.  The stuff of which only a few men in the world, such as the Surgeon, would know. 

        I lied.  Of course I lied.  I had to lie.  But I resented having to lie, and I resented the question–the entire line of inquiry.  I dislike it when subs tell me that they only want to do what I want to do, too, but I understand it–it fits in with the narrative of their submissive fantasy.  Okey dokey.  You want to please Mistress.  Fine.

          Mr. Crush did not even have that excuse.

           I floundered.  I had to make some shit up and I wasn’t going to tell him ANYTHING I liked, and since I like a lot of stuff, I was, well, really…reaching.  If he wasn’t such a needy jerk and only wanted a little piece of me…a little piece of Margo…I would have been happy to accommodate him.  I’m not stingy.  I give a great deal of my personal energy and personality to my clients, including the male dominants.  Mr. Wolf, for instance, treats me right, and I put myself out there for him.  I am there for him, but boy, he is getting as much access to my sexual identity as I can safely allow.

      But nooooo, Mr. Crush wanted alllllll of me. He wanted his cake…and he wanted to eat my cake, too. 

         I was forced to resort to something that had zero emotional resonance for me.  I was going to pick tickling, but that seems to be a guy thing; I’ve never known a woman to be into it.  Not that he would know that. Mr. Crush is pretty green…but I suppose that compared to me, almost everyone is green. 

         “Puppy play!”  Yeah, that’s what I came up with.  I told him that I had a fetish for puppy play.

         I was ranting and complaining about Mr. Crush at the Studio prior to meeting him for our session.  The other women thought it was hilarious.  I went to my locker and retrieved the doggie squeak toy I’d purchased earlier in the day from Petland Discounts.  I put it in my mouth and made it squeak.  Everyone was busting up with laughter.

        “Arf!  Arf!” we barked. 

         Anyway…I got through it.  I endured Mr. Crush’s desperate, intense plays for validation and intimacy.  I got through the Sex-ay part where he tried to be, I dunno, loving.  I got through the intense eye contact and the “tender” way he touched my face (barf! barf! barf! barf!).  I got through acting as a substitute shrink.  I got through pretending to be a happy puppy, which was actually the easiest partarf! arf! Bark bark!  I got through the invasive questions, deferring them as politely as possible. I got my money and got out of there and collapsed in a cab.  I charged him $600 and I earned every red cent and I will never do it again. 
         
        I am a good actress and I am a professional.  It is important to me to do a good job at my work, whatever that is.  And I did the best I could with Mr. Crush the entire time.  I swear I did.  But the fact that he could not tell that I was emotionally shut down or gritting my teeth inside astonishes me.   I know clients delude themselves…but really?  Really? 

        And then the EMAILS.  I knew they would come.  They came after our first session together, and then came again last time.  The first one was composed mere minutes after I walked out of his sad depressed dad apartment.  The second came a few hours later.  They clutter my inbox as I type this.  Mr. Crush wants to know, How’d I do?  

       Am I effectively describing how and why this was so difficult for me?  It’s hard to explain when he did nothing that was overtly terrible or abusive. 

       I didn’t formally fire Mr. Crush, though it might come to that.  I  ceased communication, hoping that he would get the point.  I will never see him again.  The money isn’t worth it.  

       Well, last night, out of nowhere, he sends me a text message (YES I was stupid enough to give him my phone number.  It was before I knew he was trouble.  I have given my number to four clients in my entire career) out of the blue.  

       I’m going on a trip and will be out of NYC until August.  Do you need money?  the text read.

       What?  Huh?  What are you talking about, Mr. Crush?  I had no idea what he was getting at.  The only thing I could possibly think of was that he was trying to be very discreet–because who knows who might be looking at my phone, right?–and was asking, in coded language, if he could schedule a session with me. 

       I wrote back: I’m afraid I don’t understand.  What do you mean, need money? 

        He said that he sent me an email.

        I said that I’d check it when I got home.

        Okay!  Cool! he texts.  Please confirm receipt to let me know you’ve read it!  Thanks! 

         Can you believe it?  What are you, my boss?  The Dean of my school?  

        needy needy needy

         With a heavy heart, I opened my email, sorely longing for fortifications of vodka and scotch.  I can’t even share this at an AA meeting.  I can only share it with you.  This blog.  

         Mr. Crush writes: I want you to be able to consider me as a means of support.  Would you like some money before I go on my trip?

              What?  Huh?  What the hell are you talking about, Mr. Crush?

         I wrote back: I don’t understand why you are offering me money.  Are you trying to set up a session?

          He responds: No, the session will have to wait till I get back.  My kids are here now.  I just want you to be comfortable until I see you again.  Do you need cash?  

           Wait….WHAT?

            Who does that?  I have never had a client just offer me cash.  I mean, maybe if it was some financial blackmail fantasy we were acting out…but I was still working, and he was paying for my work.  Who just offers someone cash?   Mr. Crush doesn’t even KNOW me.  We have spent maybe 5 hours together.  

         Why is he doing this?  What is going on in this man’s mind?  Can anyone tell me?  

        Is it a bribe?  Some kind of bribe?  

        Okay, think: when is the last time a man just gave me something?

        Fortinbras gave me books.  But that is not the same thing.

        Hmmm.

        The Mathematician gave me a Sonicare toothbrush after we started having sex and I stopped taking his money.  Thanks for the toothbrush, you lying cockatoo-borrowing cheating bastard.  My dentist approves of this purchase.   I HATE YOU.

        The Surgeon would kick down some bucks as a gift when he was feeling generous.  He would hide it in my handbag or my coat pocket or jewelry box when I was in the bathroom (after he rifled through them, I’m sure.  The Surgeon constantly went through my things.  I thought it was funny rather than disturbing or insulting, because I was not imprinted correctly).  

        What do these instances have in common?  Answer: I was in romantic relationships, to a greater or lesser extent, with both men.  I was dating the Mathematician, and the Surgeon was my #1.  He said that he owned me. 

       The last men who just gave me stuff were BOYFRIENDS.

       Is Mr. Crush trying to be my BOYFRIEND?  Does Mr. Crush consider himself to be my boyfriend?  

        Unfortunately, all signs point to yes

       Head, meet desk.

       Sorry, Mr. Crush.  Never in a million years.   You have worn out my last nerve.  In the span of five hours, you have utterly exhausted me.  Something is very wrong with you, Mr. Crush.  I am attracted to controlling psychos, but you are not my brand of controlling psycho.

          It really says something that I could use your financial and professional resources to make my life more comfortable and possibly further my writing ambitions, as you have a great career in publishing and are practically begging to help me out.  

        But I. Can’t. Stand it.  Never in a million years, and not for a million dollars.  I could handle letting you into my pants eventually, but you don’t get into my life, and you sure as hell don’t get let into my head.   I have expended enough anxiety, frustration, and unpublished blog posts on you as it is! 

       These are your official walking papers, Mr. Crush.  I’ll give them to you as gracefully as possible, and I hope that you take them quietly and with dignity.

       If you make me have to tell you twice…you are not going to enjoy hearing what I will have to say.

        You want me to teach you about sadism?    You can learn from watching my example.  Have a seat, young man.  Class is in session.  

       I’m fed up.  FED UP!

        Readers, do you have any insights into Mr. Crush?  It’s not just me, is it?  He’s offering me money in order to be manipulative, right?

       Arrrrghhh!  Must go to AA!  SERENITY NOW!

       If he starts crashing my AA meetings, I’m going to shoot him.

Pulp Art: What is Going On Here?

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    What’s that old-school psychological test where they show you pictures of people engaged in various activities, and then you are required to make up a story explaining the motivations of the people in picture? The Thematic Apperception Test?

     I’m not a huge Tumblr fan, but boy, you can find all sorts of images there.  Look at some of this noir pulp art.  I like to try to figure out the story behind the pictures.

     Like this one: is this lady pawning a piece of her jewelry?  If so, why?  She looks well-off.  Did she steal it?


    
 And in the world is happening here?  Is “Lucky Johnny” here stealing money out of this woman’s high-heeled shoe?  Is he paying her for the shoe?  Does she look concerned to you?  She looks concerned to me!  

     
This chick is in trouble and doesn’t know it yet.  The man and the woman helping her with her coat/shrug are in cahoots.  They’re up to something.

     
He’s either delivering bad news or else he’s someone she was really hoping she would never see again:

     This one is my favorite!  I looked at it for five minutes, trying to figure out what was going on.  My initial impression was that it looked like a cop just checking out a young couple who were fooling around in the dark…I’ve had that happen to me a few times when I was younger.  However, they’re both fully clothed and there’s a fence in between them.  And what’s she holding in her hand?

      She doesn’t look surprised, whatever’s happening.  He doesn’t, either.

       Maybe the cop is her family member?  Like her dad?

       
        “A New Johnny Liddell Mystery.”  Riiiiight.  So the question is: is the dude the man who murdered that blonde on the sofa, or is he the hard-boiled private eye who came to investigate the crime scene afterward?  Is he the woman’s boyfriend who came to her place and found her like that?

      Men’s “detective” magazines.  So weird.  I probably would have been a fan, though. 

Scenes from My Drunkalogue: Sake and Salmonella

    When I was drinking and decided that I wanted another drink before went to bed (alone! all alone!), I would sometimes call a local sushi restaurant for delivery.  I would have to call the sushi restaurant because I couldn’t go back to my neighborhood liquor store–I’d already been there once that day, and I never went more than once in a 48-hour period, lest the cashier think that I drank “too much.”  

     Such is the absurd paranoia of the alcoholic.

     Delivery from the sushi restaurant was my way of circumventing  this from happening. 

     Such is the idiotic cunning of the alcoholic. 

     I always thought that the sushi was pretty mediocre–I often wouldn’t even eat it, because calories are calories, and when one is very concerned with one’s daily morning weigh-in with Tanita, one has to choose: Eat or drink.  

     One or the other.

     I would call the sushi place and order a tuna roll, a bottle of sake (sometimes two bottles), and a diet coke.  I always had to order the tuna roll, even if I seldom ate it, because if I just called and asked for the sake, I was worried that I might look, you know, like some sort of scumbag with a problem.  

     Once I got sober, I stopped eating at that sushi restaurant because there was better sushi in the neighborhood (other places did not offer sake delivery, but that no longer mattered).

     Well, when I relapsed, I decided that I wanted some sake delivered to my door.  I went to go call the restaurant, but found that I’d taken the number out of my phone.  

    So, I had to get on the internet and look it up…

   GUESS.WHAT.I.FOUND????

   (Get out your barf bags!)

    New York City Food Sanitation Inspection gave the sushi restaurant a C rating!!!!  Oh my gawd!  Fuckin RAW FISH from a place with a C rating!  I hadn’t eaten the sushi every time…maybe not even half the time…but I’d still eaten it plenty of times.

    I almost hurled right there in my computer chair.

    I almost feel like I should post the name of the restaurant as a public service…but the delivery was always prompt, and the Chinese delivery kid was always good to me.  One time, when I was too drunk to count change and I accidentally over-tipped him by like $22 (I’ve always been a generous tipper, but that was more than the food itself), he insisted that I’d made a mistake and gave almost all of it back to me.  I’m sure he could tell that I was wasted.

     I wish that I couldn’t remember the expression of concern on his face, because the memory makes me cringe.  Just a drunk, frightened young woman so divorced from humanity that I might as well have been a Martian.  Little Martian Margo, all alone in my Martian apartment, surrounded by books I couldn’t read and half-written manuscripts I couldn’t finish.

     Good times, eh?  God, living like that was a nightmare.  Heh.  “Living.”  

      Despite the tragi-comic tone of this post, I am doing quite well tonight.  Two meetings today, lunch with a friend.  The birds are fed and watered and their cages are clean and disinfected.  I wrote 1500 words, edited ten pages of a manuscript someone is paying me to edit, and now I am going to do laundry (it. never. ends.) and stop by the Nice Lady’s apartment while it’s washing.  Remember Nice Lady, with the cats and the computer problems?  I set up an email address for her?  

     She called me, concerned.  She is confused by the email box.  She seems to think that it can only hold one (1) email at a time, and she is trying to “get rid” (delete) an old one in order to “make room” for a new one.  She is concerned that a “new one” can’t “get in” because the old one is, I dunno, taking up all the space. 

    Did I mention that she is pretty old? I’m not making fun of her, I’m really not.  

     Tomorrow…rested and fortified…it’s back to the Studio.  I have two appointments with regulars.  I will not stay for the rest of the shift, however.  Management won’t complain; they’re still too caught up in Teh Krazy. 

Even Hercules Needed Help

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    Update 10:15 PM

     Three AA meetings today and I am home, safe, for the night.  I got through the day, functioned well at my job, called three sober women to report that I was alive and not sucking down Bushmill’s and avoiding my Parrot (the last time I relapsed, I covered Parrot’s cage with a sheet so that she couldn’t see me drink.  Not quite sure who I thought I was trying to protect there, lol).

      Something pretty rad even happened when I walked home from work.  I was walking through a park that had a huge statue of Abraham Lincoln in it.  President Lincoln is my favorite president.  Perched on the statue’s shoulder was a hugeass beautiful hawk.  Lots of people had stopped to admire her.  She definitely looked like a much happier bird than the self-mutilated cockatoo I posted down below.  

      Adler, my surname, is the German word for eagle.  An eagle is not a hawk, but they are both raptors.  

      I would rather be that hawk chillin with Lincoln than the sad hurting cockatoo. 

      Finally, because someone asked, the picture at the bottom of the blog post is the great hero Herakles who retrieved the three-headed monster hound Kerberos from the land of the dead.  It seemed appropriate.

                *                         *                    *                        *

Dammit, you 8 readers!  Why aren’t you voting?  It is imperative that blame be assigned and a culprit publicly shamed.

       Yesterday was a truly crummy day.  I had nightmare that I was counterfeiting money to give to my landlord, which is crazy because I would never do that.  That is a federal fucking offense.  And even if I did do it–which I never would–I wouldn’t do it by downloading the image of a $100 bill off the internet, printing it out on my cheap stupid printer, and then cutting it out with the scalpel the Surgeon sent to me in my Valentine (I keep the scalpel by my desk.  Whenever I miss him, I refer to it).  

        Nevertheless, I woke up convinced–convinced!–that I had given my landlord $400 in counterfeit money, and he found out when he tried to deposit it at the bank.  Caught! Busted!

        Guess how much money I earned with the French Fry.  

         Tell me there’s not a connection.

         Feeling a little conflicted about how you make your living, Margo?   Subconsciously?

         My brother injured his back at work.  The doctor says he needs surgery.  He’s been on pain medication for months now.  I am terrified that he’ll get addicted.  If he takes it every day, addiction is inevitable. 

         He has 50% different genes than me.  I pray to a God I don’t believe in that my brother will be spared this affliction.  I know that he doesn’t drink.  He does use tobacco, though, which is a performance indicator.  

         He knows about the anorexia–he saw me at my lowest weight. He doesn’t know about the alcoholism.  I didn’t develop it until I moved away from home–they don’t know how bad it got, or that I’m still struggling with it now.

          Maybe I need to call my brother and have a serious talk with him about this.   A serious, Come To Jesus talk.   He does not want to be where I am now. 

         It will have to be me.  God knows my mother won’t do it–she doesn’t see what she doesn’t want to see.  I could show up for Thanksgiving weighing 80 lbs and drink a bottle of wine by myself at dinner and she wouldn’t say a word.  Denial is my mother’s chief coping mechanism.  It’s not exactly healthy, but at least it is much easier on the liver.   HA!  Watch–she’ll live to be 105 years old, and I’ll be dead by 35.  Self-destruct. 

This Cockatoo did this to herself.  I know why. 


        I’ll make the call this afternoon.  Too early now.   The time zone change.

         I’m going to take a shower and go to an AA meeting before work–regular tutoring job today.  Then I will call my brother.  I love him and I don’t want him to suffer.

         I need friends, and I need help.  I’m scared, for him and for myself.  This killed three of my four grandparents.  I don’t want to die. 

          Even Hercules needed help.  He asked for it and was not ashamed.

         Ask, and you shall receive. 

Cerberus carried off by Heracles | Greek vase, Caeretan black figure hydria

And the Oscar goes to Miss Margo for Her Performance as….

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  UPDATE 6 PM:

       Am home…safe and sound and wealthier.

       French Fry was a gentleman because he graciously coughed up a tip, even though I know tipping is not part of European culture.  Euros almost never tip, but this one did.  Cool beans.  When in Rome, Frenchie!  (I did give a tip-worthy performance, though, IMO.)

      We talked about European politics.

       “You really know about many things!” he said.  I liked him, but this did, indeed, invoke the punching response, even though I have never actually punched anyone in my life and I hope I never shall.

       Why so surprised?  Are sex workers really that uneducated?  Even the ones in my specialty and price range?  And how clueless does one have to be to not know that Edinburgh is an important finance capital?

       We were not even discussing obscure high-brow stuff.  This was not New York Review of Books material.  It was not even Economist. 

          He complained about Muslim immigration.  I sympathized. We talked about how they almost took over Europe back in the day.  They came very close.  Who knows if they could have held it…but it’s an interesting historical question to speculate about, like WHAT IF?! the South won the Civil War or the Axis Powers won WWII.

        Then we talked about Russia.  Russians are scary shit.  They are the country LEAST worth screwing with, outside of maybe North Korea and China.  And Pakistan.  Pakistan is a ticking time bomb.  It’s run by a bunch of tards with no real control and they have nukes and our government keeps GIVING THEM FREE WAR MACHINES.

      But that is neither here nor there.

       Here are photos from the hotel:

     

  I almost never do role-play when I practice sadomasochism in my private life.  Probably because I don’t have to.  Readers of my blog will know that I, sadly, have awful taste in men.  Left to my own devices, I tend to gravitate towards the ones who are wildly inappropriate.  When you enter into a relationship where there are significant power dichotomies and imbalances from the start, it’s not necessary to play make-believe in the bedroom in order to get your kinky rocks off.  

         Many clients enjoy it though, for whatever reason.  I got an email for a role-play session this morning, and after my experience with Prisoner 39, it made me think about the roles I have been asked to play at my Secret Job.

       Here they are, in no particular order: 

        Executioner, Wonder Woman (or other comic book superheroine), Pimp or Madam of a brothel, police officer, Stasi Agent (he actually wanted me to be an SS agent, but I just couldn’t bring myself to do it.  Pretending to be a Nazi is a hard limit for me. Not that the Stasi were champions of human rights, but damn…a Nazi?  Really?), kidnapper of small children, White Supremacist (black man with a Ph.D. asked for this, but again, I could not do it.  I am too much of a guilty polite liberal), step-daughter, teenage babysitter, stepmother or aunt, mean bully girl in school, leader of a “girl gang,” librarian from hell, cruel sorority chick, epileptic, Customs agent at the airport, college instructor, undertaker/mortician, corpse, cuckolding emasculating bitch of a wife, ex-girlfriend, and femme fatale neighbor lady who kills you by poisoning your drink when she invites you over to her apartment (you thought you were going to get laid.  NOPE!!!  Get out the Black Heftys and the axe!).  

        Oh yeah–hypnotist!  Evil hypnotist!  And a psychiatrist/psychologist.  

       I’m sure that there are more.  Those are just the ones I could think of off the top of my head.  

        When it comes to clients who want role-play, the least imaginative–by far–are the male doms.  They are even less imaginative than the cross-dressers/sissies (if a sissy rolls into the Studio, I can tell you EXACTLY how the session will go.  EXACTLY.   Is there some sissy script software out from from which they all download their kinky programming, or what?).

       The male doms always want me to be one of two things.  Can you guess?  I bet you can guess.  Come on, this one is easy.  

       Errant secretary.  Or co-ed/schoolgirl. 

       Secretary.  Schoolgirl. 

       If you are plan to practice professional switching, those are the uniforms you will need.  The only variation is: are you a sexy secretary, or a demure conservative secretary?  Do you want the authentic Catholic uniform, or the slutty adult version you can buy at the Halloween Store?

       I will know that society is becoming more feminist when a male dom wants me to be a Female CEO who needs punishment. 

        Secretary.  Schoolgirl.  God, you guys, could you shake it up a little?  

         Anyway, this afternoon, after I spend a thrilling hour or two at the laundrymat, I’m going to come home and get gussied up so that I can play the part of…..sexy secretary!   Wheeeeeee!   Hair down!  Dangly earrings!  Why sir, I had no idea that my pencil skirt was too short and showed my stockingtops when I sat down!  These red heels are inappropriate to wear at this law firm, sir?  

         I didn’t know that my blouse was unbuttoned too far!

         What would I do to keep this job…?  I would do anything to keep this job!  Anything!  Even…a spanking! 

         You know, I would find the eroticization of blatant sexual harassment offensive if this roleplay were not also so cornball.  I mean, picture it from my perspective.  Do you know how hard it is to keep a straight face sometimes when you’re playing sexy secretary?   It’s even harder when the dude is taking it really seriously and isn’t, you know, having fun with it.  And it’s hardest of all if Mr. Serious Domly Dom is also kind of a jerk in the bargain and I’ve sized him up and know for a fact that I have at least 40 IQ points on him (but then again, he’s the one with the big bucks to hire me for an hour, so maybe my intellectual snobbery is just sour grapes).

         This is basically the email I received to book the session:

           Dear Miss Margo;

     Hi, my name is Well-To-Do French Businessman Cog in the Capitalist Machine.  I would like to have a session with you this afternoon.  I would like a roleplay in which you are a sexy secretary who must be punished for teasing the men in the office.  I enjoy red toenails and nice soft feet.  Do you have red toenails and nice soft feet?  I am happy to meet with you at the hotel bar and prove that I’m not a cop. These are my references.  Again: soft feet, red toenails.  Black stockings are also ideal.  And I love high heels!

    Thanks and I look forward to meeting you,

   French Cog in the Capitalist Machine

        Well, I guess this male dom is actually shaking it up: sexy secretary…and foot fetish.  Riiiiiiiight. 



    
And now, because I was wearing flip-flops all day yesterday, I have to go spend some quality time with the Ped-Egg.  Excuse me.  

     Ped-Egg.  Laundry.  Sexy Secretary with this French Fry.  AA meeting.  Gym.  Call mom.  Keep it simple, don’t pick up.  

      Frenchie says I will recognize him in the lobby as he is French and also doesn’t have much hair.  Well, that sure narrows it down!  Must consult the internet and make sure this guy isn’t Dominique Strauss-Kahn.

       Speaking of sleazebags, if you ride the NYC Subway, you can’t help but notice the grotesque and cheesy ads for Dr. Zizm*r, cosmetic surgeon.  I mean, these are some really bad ads, and they are ubiquitous (if you want the scoop, the Surgeon told me once that the guy is really slimy and shakes down younger doctors, but this is coming from the Surgeon, who is not exactly Mr. Rogers himself.  I wouldn’t be surprised if the Surgeon writes negative, scathing anonymous internet reviews of his competition).

       Someone did a parody of Dr. Zizm*r’s subway ads.

        I laughed till I cried.

The Execution

    Yesterday at the Studio, by the authority invested in me by the Commonwealth of Makebelieve-State, I executed a prisoner found guilty of the heinous crime of murder in the first degree.  

      I hanged him by the neck until he was dead.

      Well, not really, of course.  We faked it.

      I had to write about it. I couldn’t not write about this one.  I try very hard to respect clients’ privacy and how we spend our time together–because I really do respect them, or almost all of them, you know, and I don’t want to make a spectacle of them on my little blog (besides…I was there, too, if you know what I mean).  But I had to write about this one. This was Just Too Fucking Much.  Things like this just don’t come along every day.

     I’d already done a session first thing in the morning, so I was a little spent.  I’ve done as many as 4 in a day, but I find, depending on the nature of the session, that after 2, I’m fried.  When I work independently, I almost never do more than 1.  But at the Studio, when work comes along, you’re stupid not to take it if you can, because some days you don’t make anything. 

     Anyway…this man comes in in the early afternoon.  Articulate, clean-cut, ironed jeans and a polo shirt.  He looked normal.  

     Except.  Except. 

     He had that look in his eye.  I’d recognize it at a thousand paces.  

     The look of a man in thrall to his fetish.

     The intensity.  He was strung tighter than piano wire.  Tense.  On fire.  I wish I could describe it more accurately.  The only thing I’ve seen remotely similar is the aura around religious fanatics when they really get rolling.  

      I shook his hand and had a seat.  I assumed a professional and friendly-but-impersonal demeanor.  

      “So!  What brings you in?” I asked.

      He told me.  He knew exactly what he wanted.  The true fetishists always do.  They know their obsessions inside and out.  You better believe that I know mine.

     He wanted to be publicly executed via hanging, then granted a reprieve as he danged at the end of the rope (the execution was botched on purpose) and tortured for two hours.

       My heart sank.

       See, usually I love this weird shit–and believe me, this was definitely some Weird Shit, even for the Studio.  I find Weird Shit fascinating, and to quote Hunter S. Thompson, when the going gets weird, the weird turn pro.  And I am a pro.  

       But I am also Trying to Keep My Shit Together in the alcoholism department.  That is priority numero uno these days.  And that means minimizing stress and distractions and not doing stuff that fucks with my mind.  

      I was concerned that pretending to kill someone just might fuck with my mind.  Just maybe.  One never knows.  I’ve pretended to kill people three times in my career, and it was always harmless fun, but really, one never knows.  Some sessions leave…emotional backwash that doesn’t register right away.

      It comes back later.  In your dreams.  Asleep and awake. 

      I wanted to give the session to another Mistress, but he wanted me.  

      What was I supposed to do?  Say no to the money? I’m doing better than I ever have, but come on, the rent’s not paying itself.  Besides–I was intrigued.  This was some Weird Shit, and I knew for a fact that I was the best bitch in the house to do it.  I knew more about capital punishment in American jurisprudence than any other woman working the shift.  I come from a death penalty state, I have relatives in LE, I studied it professionally and recreationally, and I’m a good improv actress.  

       Gear up.  

       I don’t mind telling you: I was in fine form.  When I do it right, I do it right, and I knocked that ball out of the fucking park.  I was the Babe Ruth of the Superstudio yesterday afternoon.

       First, I had the manager lock the “prisoner” in a cell with his “Last Meal.” Then I fired up the internet and learned how to tie a proper hangman’s noose.  I took it to another room and strung it up from the ceiling. 

      Then I got dressed.  While I prepared, I rehearsed out loud what I was going to say.  Whenever I teach or speak in public, I have found that it always pays off to rehearse beforehand, preferably in front of a mirror.  Don’t go in cold.  Sound like you know what you’re talking about.

       I wore tight black leather pants, a feminine see-through white silk blouse, a tight black leather vest, and matte black leather pumps.  I put my hair up in a french twist.  Minimal makeup, but bright red lipstick (red like blood, bwahahahahaha).

      I got two of my co-workers to help me.  I told them exactly what we were going to do.  They were going to be prison guards.  I was going to be, of course, the executioner. 

       They got all leathered up and put executioners’ masks on their heads.  We looked totally badass. 

       Then we went to fetch the prisoner.  I called him Prisoner 39.  I stood in front of his cell and announced that I had come to fulfill my duties as chief executioner of the Commonwealth.  I asked one of the “guards” if he’d finished with the prison chaplain.

       Yes, she said.  He’d made his peace with God. 

        I asked him if he was ready.  I said that I would like to give him as much dignity, in this final act, as possible. 

        He announced that he intended to meet his fate like a man.

        We pinioned his arms behind his back with rope and put leather mittens on his hands so that he couldn’t use them.  Then I had the two other girls hold him by the arms–hard–and follow me out of the room and down the hall into a different room.

        Where the noose was waiting.

         When he saw it, he freaked out a little bit.  I don’t know if it was real or if he was faking it.  He started to sweat, though, and I guess you can’t fake that. 

         I turned and spoke in a loud voice, as if addressing a crowd:

        “We are here today to carry out the execution of this prisoner, No. 39 Mr. John Doe.  He has been tried and convicted by a jury of his peers for the crime of homicide in the first degree.  In accordance with the law of the Commonwealth of MadeupState, he is to be hanged by the neck until dead.”

        I asked him if he had any last words.

        “I’m not sorry for what I did,” he said.  

         That was all.

          I put a black bag (a pillowcase) over his head.  Then I tied his ankles together so that he wouldn’t kick, because sometimes, when hanged, they kick and shiver in death.

           I could see the black bag puffing in and out with his respiration. 

            I put the noose over his head and tightened it (but not too tight).  I put it as high up on the neck as possible.  I even put the knot just behind his left ear…almost.

          Almost, but not quite.

           Because the execution had to be “botched.”

          “Can we call the governor?  Can I get a retrial?” he asked through the bag.

           I ignored him.  “Now, by the authority invested in me by the Commonwealth of MadeupState, it is my duty to execute this prisoner!”

            I had one of my co-workers raise the lid on a heavy wooden box in the room.  She dropped the lid and it made a loud clap.  That was supposed to be the sound of the “drop,” you know…when the gallows floor opens up and drops the condemned. 

           I jerked the rope up (but not too tight…I didn’t want to suffocate him for real.  That would be great.  Oh yeah…call an ambulance…the Post would love that one.  Some dumbass mistress almost killed a man at the Nutcracker Suite a few years ago via a noose.  Thankfully, the guy lived…not even any brain damage.  The Nutcracker Suite is now defunct.  Wonder why?).

            The prisoner pretended to be strangling at the end of the rope.  He made delightfully gruesome choking noises and turned slowly in a circle. 

          All in a day’s work, my friends.  All in a day’s work.  How else is a girl supposed to keep the lights on and feed a Parrot?

         After a minute, I shouted at him (and for the first time, there was a little emotion in my voice: contempt and a little humor.  Before, I’d been as cold and professional as possible): “Do you know why you are still alive, Prisoner 39?  Because Governor Murphy called me this morning and told me that hanging was too good for you!

          I loosened the noose and took it off his head.  Then I snatched the bag away and got up in his face, nose to nose.

          “The Governor tasked me with making you truly pay for your heinous crime!  As chief executioner, I assured him that I was more than up to the task.  Guards, assist me in securing the prisoner.”

           He started to beg for death.  He said that he’d heard stories about me, and they were supposed to be true.  He said that I was the most notorious female torturers and executioners in the country, and he would rather be dead than fall into my hands.

          We tied him up on the cross.

           “Leave us,” I told the guards.

           Then we got busy. 

           When I wasn’t hurting him, we made small talk about his fetish (he’d said that he wanted to talk about it).  Basically, the dude had…well, an execution fetish.  That was a new one to me.  I’ve met men who wanted to role-play being killed before…but usually, it’s just the fantasy of being killed by a beautiful woman (one guy wanted to be drugged, killed, and then chopped up and put into Hefty bags.  The hilarious part, to me, was that he was so damn specific about the garbage bags.  Black Hefty bags!  No other garbage bags would do!  He brought his own Black Heftys, lest the dungeon not have the correct type of severed-limb-containing plastic bags.  I did the best I could with it).  I’d never met a man who had a formal execution fetish.

          “So, if you had to be executed, what would you choose?” he asked me.

         “Firing squad,” I said, no hesitation.

         “Me, too!  That’s my favorite.  I’d refuse the blindfold, too.  I’d want to see.  A firing squad made up of beautiful women…” his eyes got far away and dreamy.

         I swear I am not making this up.

        We talked about methods of execution.  He knew all about each one.  We debated the merits and dangers of each: electrocution, hanging, the gas chamber, lethal injection. 

         “The gas chamber doesn’t actually sound so painful, but after WWII, it looks really bad,” he said.

            I agreed.

            Then the conversation would drift back into his fantasy: “So, how did you become Chief Executioner?”

            I told him that I got my Ph.D. in Criminal Justice and then worked my way up through the penitentiary system, apprenticing under the last great female executioner. 

             “You know, before I became an outlaw, I used to be an executioner,” he said.

              “Oh?”

              “Yes.  One time I had to execute a beautiful young woman.  I stayed up with her all the night before, and counseled her so that she wouldn’t be scared.  She trusted me and knew that I wouldn’t hurt her when the time came to kill her.

              The next morning, I gently lead her to the wall and shot her in the heart.”

                         *                          *                      *                     *

             That is one of the most macabre, fascinating fantasies I’d ever heard.  And I’ve heard more than my fair share.  

                          *                          *                       *                   *

          Aside from this weirdass execution fetish, the man seemed normal.  It was a great session.  I’d take a break from the conversation and torture every now and again and give him a sip of water to drink, holding his head gently while I poured the water into his mouth.

         “It doesn’t have to hurt every time I touch you, Prisoner 39,” I smiled. 

         In the end, I let him go.  He said that he had a great time.  He gave me a good tip.  The only time I got irritated with him was when he said: “I wish that my wife was more like you.”

          That made me want to slap him in the face.  I would have done it, but the session was over and so it would have been wrong of me to do that.  Have some fucking respect, buddy. Sorry your wife is a real live human being who has a ton of stuff to do in her life other than embody your sexual fantasy.  And even if she is a crappy wife, you shouldn’t bad-mouth her to a stranger, especially another woman.  Have some class! 

     I don’t know why that irritated me so much.  Probably because it reminded me of something the Mathematician told me when he dropped the bomb on me that morning: My wife isn’t sexy like you.

       Wish she could have been there to hear you say that, Mathematician.  I wonder how the marriage counseling is going?  Did she dump you yet?  She can do better.

        But I digress.  

        The session was fine.  We finished, I cleaned up, and then I went and flopped down on the couch.  Two multi-hour sessions, back-to-back!  I felt like a dead donkey! 



        I almost got another one, too.  When I heard that, I groaned: “If this guy picks me, I’M going to need an executioner!” Ultimately, though, the guy picked the tallest mistress in the house (I was second-tallest yesterday).  I guess he was into height.  These guys, the things they come up with!  

        I think I came out of it okay.  No emotional backwash yet.  No bad dreams.  I think everything in my head is all right. 
             
         An execution.  God, what a day.  Just when I think I’ve seen it all.

                  *                        *                        *                  *

        Also, let me tell you, management at the Studio has been a total shitstorm  recently.  I haven’t been there much because I’m back in AA Bootcamp, but ever time I show up, there is Major Management Drama.  I don’t know where these crazy bitches got their business acumen, but something tells me it wasn’t the fucking Stern School of Business at NYU, okay?  

        Two of them, including the ferocious terror-inducing Russian, are acting like hardened Southern crackers in a blood feud.  They’re at war.  Another one had surgery recently and her medication is making her a space cadet.  We had to send her home in a cab the other day.  Managers Hatfield and McCoy weren’t going to come in, so that meant that we had to run the dungeon ourselves for the day. 

        Fine with me!  I’m a socialist at heart, anyway.  

        I got on the Manager’s computer and found the National Anthem of the USSR on YouTube.  I cranked up the volume and played it for the House:


    (Aside: while the irony of the lyrics does not escape me, the Soviets had a great fuckin national anthem.  I’m glad that the Russians kept it and just changed the lyrics. They’d be out of their minds to ditch that awesome tune.  Our national anthem sucks.  It’s beautiful, but you have to be able to sing like Pavarotti in order to actually sing it.  I can’t sing it.  Can you?  Do you know anyone who actually can?  Have you ever heard anyone sing it outside of a sporting event?  Do you even know the lyrics?  I don’t!

Also, remember when our enemies were white people with a navy who could do calculus, and not some deadbeat crazy loser Arabs with boxcutters?  Wasn’t that romantic?)

      “Down with management!  We can manage ourselves.  Let’s take over!  Take the machines!  The workers now control the means of production!” I shouted, laughing maniacally.

       The other women looked at me, slightly concerned.  Usually, I am the calm, sane one. 

       “Take it easy, Margo.”

        I put up a screensaver of Karl Marx.  I bet the Russian manager got a charge out of that one when she saw it, hahhaha.  I can hear it now: “Vat is zees?  Vat is screensaver of Marx heer?”

        Of course, the minute we didn’t have formal management, we got really busy, with wackadoodles coming in and the phones ringing off the hook.  We took turns manning the desk and everything worked out just fine.  It was my idea to make every woman accountable for her own money, that way if anyone was dishonest and tried to rip off the house, the only one she would endanger would be herself.  We put the House’s cut in sealed envelopes and then signed our names across the seal, so that it would be obvious if anyone tampered with them (that, too, was my idea).  

       We got through it just fine.  Actually better than fine, because without managers there was no shitstorm melodrama.  

SCAVENGER HUNT! Help a Girl Out! (updated)

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   UPDATE:  I told Fortinbras where the state of More was located.  He says that he can see it from his office across the Thames.  Anyway, he is pleased and says that when he gets back to NYC, he will “award me my prize.”  I am not sure whether to be happy or terrified.  If I said that to a sub, I’d have something up my sleeve for sure.  lol

THANK YOU FOR YOUR HELP, READERS! XOXOXO

            *                       *                    *                   *    

   Mr. Crush is driving me nuts.  How could I have not foreseen that a man whose purpose in our initial meeting was to haggle about my boundaries, would end up being a problem?  What a shocker, right?  Why didn’t I see it coming?  Because he was calm and placid and intelligent?  Because he was sober and in AA?  As if I didn’t know that AA is full of fruitbats?  I should have known he’s be trouble the minute I saw that huge Norton Anthology of POSTMODERN POETRY in his apartment.  Who in their right mind would voluntarily read postmodern poetry?  Good God, I bet he’s published in it…

      (He’s also a huge fan of David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest.  Another huge red flag I ignored.  A few of his short essays were okay, but my opinion of this author is mirrored here and here.) 

     Did I mention that I ran into him at a AA meeting?  Cause I did. You saw that coming, right?  Of course you did.  

      I almost crapped my pants (this was after our first session together).  I was hoping that he wouldn’t notice me, but of course he did.  If he had the tact that God gave a goat, he would have know that it was Something Never To Be Spoken Of.  But our sad divorced fan of postmodern poetry, in the thralls of his crush on our idiot heroine Miss Margo, has no tact and seems to think our mutual   presence in AA is something we can “bond” over.  

      He has been demoted from “Tolerable Client: Cell Phone Bill Ain’t Gonna Pay Itself” to “Client to be Seen Only in Times of Acute Financial Distress” to FIRED.  Say “Hi” to Dave on Rejected, Fired Client Island, Mr. Crush. 

       He is going to find this, because he is searching Ye Olde Internet for me even at this very moment, I have no doubt.  You might think that is vain of me to say that a client would want to, or even could, find my statistically-irrelevant blog in the ever-expanding universe of the internet, but I’ve had clients find me here.  Four times, confirmed.  95% sure the Mathematician found it, but I couldn’t get him to confess, so the jury was unable to convict. I know the Surgeon never found it, because if he did, I would not be here typing this right now (for reasons which remain opaque to me, the Surgeon hates the internet.  Probably because he can’t control it). 

      When he reads this, it is going to hurt his fe-fes.  I hate to be mean, but oh well.  I am still so irritated and aggravated that I can’t even publish the conclusion of the Tale of Mr. Crush.  I’ve written three drafts and I can’t bring myself to publish them.  Do you want to read them?  Do you think it’s appropriate to write about him?

      Forget it, let’s move on before I go crazy.  LET’S DO SOMETHING FUN!

      Readers: help a girl out!  The jet-setting Fortinbras, who is in Tokyo or Copenhagen or Paris or other Fabulous Place (I can’t keep up), has given me an assignment.  A sort of artistic Scavenger Hunt.

      Where on Planet Earth is this statue?  Can anyone help me out? Does anyone recognize it, or know someone who might?

     I promised that I wouldn’t Google Images it, so you can’t either.  Please don’t let me cheat.  

     It’s Thomas More, so intuition says London (or at least England), and I know that Fortinbras lives and works there sometimes.  I also told him that I was going to the Frick this week…is this statue at the Frick?  I’ve been to the Frick, but I don’t remember seeing it. 

      There has to be an association…this can’t be just some random Thomas More in Vatican City or Tibet or in Dr. Evil’s Secret Volcano Lair. I’d never find it. 

       I’ll ask Heinrich too.  Art is his business.  

       Thank God Fortinbras is an extremely busy man and I am merely a recreational play toy (as it should be, as it should be), because if he found this blog I would have to kill myself, lol.