The Hotel, Part 1

[Caution: French-movie timeline.]

Her first waking realization was that she was coming out of a deep sleep. The thought made her happy. She used to have trouble sleeping, and nowadays, she slept well and deeply. She knew why, too. She had made some dramatic life changes a few years ago, and she felt like she was still catching up on sleep deprivation from the last few decades. She loved sleeping so well — both the knowledge that she was doing so, and the actual experience of falling into a deep sleep and waking up from it, refreshed. Her energy level during her waking hours … that was very different, too.

She felt the covers being lifted, and this caused her to wake up a little more, feeling delicious anticipation. She felt someone’s long, soft hair touch her breasts, and then move toward her tummy.

She used to be deeply self-conscious about her sexuality and nudity. She had been shy in so many ways, but in bed it had been even worse, feeling embarrassed about being seen in the nude. It had taken several months to enable her to accept herself as such. At first, she’d tried to will herself to let go but her lover had reminded her: “you can’t help how you feel.” Inspired by the blonde’s enthusiastic acceptance, she’d gradually re-evaluated herself as to being worthy of being seen, and being loved, including physical intimacy in every way.

So, happy to be in the nude and in the present, she lay there, feeling the blonde’s long hair hanging down, brushing her tummy, and the blonde’s gentle but strong hands on either side of her hips. She smiled as she thought of what had been subsumed in “in every way” and how enthusiastically she’d finally embraced her own sexuality. Nowadays, sleeping in the nude was the only way, for her.

As she lay there, she thought back to the day she had announced to the blonde that she was officially discarding her peignoir, and the blonde had suggested they go burn it instead. So, in the warmth of a Nevada summer night, in the nude, somewhere in the desert, the two of them had had a formal ceremony, and had burned the peignoir. Then, still in the nude, and as instructed, she’d laid back onto the still-warm hood of the blonde’s old Jeep Grand Wagonneer, and she’d arched her back while enjoying pleasurable sensations, looking up at the dark sky and intensely bright stars above, and wishing she’d met the blonde three or four decades prior.

In bed with the blonde, these past few years, the sensations she’d experienced had been deeply pleasurable, but the most profound enjoyment came from the intimacy involved.

As she felt the blonde’s tongue flick at her solar plexus, she thought back at another night when they’d been together, in that same hotel — their favorite, since that was where she’d met her lover for the first time. That night, she’d first felt the blonde’s hair brushing her naked tummy, and she’d felt the blonde’s hands on either side of her hips, and had realized what was going to happen next. With instant shame and embarrassment, she had mumbled “I need to go shower first” and she had wiggled aside, leaped out of bed and had spent a long time in the shower, getting ready. It had subsequently taken several months for her to accept that such preliminary early-morning showers were not a requirement. As she remembered their early mornings together, these last few years, she bit her lower lip, feeling her arousal build. She arched her back.

Her mind tended to wander during sexual activity. This had been a problem with the last guy she’d been with. He had noticed, and had taken offense when he’d realized she was thinking of her first intense romantic love. Much as she had tried to conversationally reassure, her mind had kept going back to her first lover during sex with the subsequent guy. She had been unable to prevent it.

Even in bed with the blonde, her thoughts had wandered similarly. The blonde, however, had cheerfully accepted that, and had encouraged her to let go, and to focus on whatever she happened to be feeling. Slowly, over many months, her feelings of guilt — on so many subjects — had diminished down to nothingness.

The sexiest thing the blonde had ever done for her, was to enable her to be guilt-free about her own feelings. She used to describe herself as neurotic but the blonde had instead described her as having a complex mind. The blonde’s acceptance of her had paved the way to her own acceptance of herself.

“When your mind wanders, I’ll just wait for you to go there, and come back. Meanwhile, I’ll enjoy your physical presence,” the blonde had said. And so it was that while her mind was wandering to events of almost three decades ago, she also felt comforted by the loving fingertips on her skin. For there to be such harmony and acceptance was the most comforting experience of all.

Often, the blonde’s skillful administrations had brought her thoughts back to the here-and-now due to intensely pleasurable sensations due to acts that she’d never expected to experience.

That particular hotel offered a lovely breakfast, served until 10 a.m. She glanced at the alarm clock by the bed. It showed: 915 am. She mumbled, half-resisting: “we might miss breakfast.”

That had been another major development. She didn’t eat all that well, before meeting the blonde. She’d avoided unhealthy foods but that didn’t automatically translate into eating well. But, under the blonde’s influence, she’d over the course of several years changed how she felt about food, and how well she ate. She was a lot more healthy — and happy — nowadays, and that was probably one of the reasons why.

This reference to breakfast was their own private joke, one of a great many. The first time she’d mumbled “we might miss breakfast” the blonde has responded with “you ARE breakfast.” The implications had shocked her, the first time she’d heard that. She heard the familiar phrase yet again, from the blonde’s lips.

She liked the blonde’s lips, she thought, envisioning them, her mind wandering to what it felt like to kiss each other on the mouth. And then, some pleasurable sensations made it difficult for her to focus on anything but that pleasure.

 

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Ambiguity

One of my favorite people on the planet (let’s call her Miss X) has just posted something ambiguous on social media. That doesn’t surprise me. English is highly ambiguous.

Really, my preference is that she says her ambiguous things in person. If it’s in bed, I’d probably pull her closer and ask her to elaborate.  If we’re elsewhere, I’d probably give her a hug and ask her to elaborate. This isn’t a figure of speech. I’d strongly prefer to have this particular girl in my life, in person, every day from here on. If she were open to it, I’d drive down to LA this week and go get her, with the request that she sings to me Prince’s “Take me with U” when she first opens the door.

This particular person is a cerebral shy girl.  So am I. She loves clarity. So do I. One of the things she did, that helped me fall in love with her, is that during an interview she asked someone, in the middle of a confusing conversation, what the definition is as to a concept central to the conversation. I love that. I love how her mind works.

But, it’s complicated. She’s a public figure. Her work, her aesthetics and her style have thousands fawning over her. There’s confusion as to whether it’s about how she is now or how she used to be. It doesn’t seem to be a matter of differentiation; she’s continually inundated with adulation. If I write her, I sometimes feel like I’m writing to someone imprisoned. Will she actually get my message? I feel drowned out in the noise, just one more voice in a multitude. So when I write, I try to stand out by being clear — and persistent.

If she weren’t a public figure, and somehow I could talk to her without being drowned out by noise, I’d tell her: “Hi! I like you very much. Come move in with me. Let’s see how it goes. If you like it, stay.”

However, if she were to wonder why I like her, that’s where the conversational problems would begin.

This girl lives by her own standards. Thousands are fawning over her looks but from what I infer, she categorizes herself as disqualified from being attractive in the looks department.

As to how she thinks, there she and I also disagree. I love how she thinks, but from her writing, I’d guess that if she could go back in time and swap out her brain for a more typically-functioning unit, she would. That would make her socially fit far better with the typical people around her. For example, she would never have felt so socially different. As a result, she would not have been so shy.  As a result, she probably would have had a serious romance much, much earlier in life, as in high school. That in turn would have shaped her personal life to be very, very different because the delays and difficulties as to connecting with others, especially romantically — they have dramatically shaped her life. I’m clear it’s been a very difficult life, for her — to a large extent for that reason. I empathize. I was the same, but I was luckier. Starting in early adulthood, I met other cerebral shy girls. I could, and did, enjoy intense connections with them.

Yes, I am into girls — cerebral shy girls, specifically.  Even so, I do sometimes have sex with guys. There’s something hot and primal about it.  In spite of that, I’m basically a dyed-in-the-wool lesbian. As we say, I’m a lesbian but not a gold-star lesbian since I also choose to have sex with guys.

What matters to me is the mental connection. I can only fall in love with girls.  A guy might be handsome or perfectly shaped but he wouldn’t get me hot whereas an attractive girl would. Much as I also appreciate a pretty smile, I’m a sapiosexual, meaning that I’m highly attracted to intelligence. That, Miss X radiates. As to other girls, if their attraction is that they look like Miss Nevada, then 25 years from now, they might be less attractive whereas Miss X — the girl on whom I’m so focused — will continue to be cerebral, brilliant, intense and delightful.  To me, she’s hot now, and I expect she’ll be hot 25 years from now, as long as she always has that calm glow of intense intelligence softly radiating from her gorgeous eyes.  To illustrate the point, if she could get the world’s best boob job but she’d have to lower her intelligence, I’d hope she says “no thanks” to that and remains just as delightful as she is today, by my standards anyway.

Where would she fit into my life? Ideally, right next to me, wherever I go. Will this be easy for her? No. My lifestyle is wild and Bohemian. Much as I value her, my attitude is: “I’m on a journey. You’re welcome to come along. I hope you do, but you’d at most be my travel companion. You’d never become the journey itself. Much as I expect to continue to focus on you, and on learning about you and from you, and teaching you, and sharing intense experiences with you, you wouldn’t actually personify my journey. Even if we lie in bed together happily for days on end, that’s part of the journey of exploring intimacy and sexuality. ”

Life with me tends to be varied and wild; much is an adventure.  For example, I often dress like a sex worker. I am a sex worker.  I haven’t worked as such in a while, but I have in the past cheerfully made money using erotic attraction as a key part of the dynamic.

Even though I don’t charge nowadays, I still sometimes have sex with guys.  Would this change? No. Would she be welcome to come along and watch or better yet, join in? Absolutely.

I also have many female friends, some of whom are cerebral and many of whom do look like Miss Nevada.  If Miss X wants to end up in bed with one of my friends, that’s fine too.  Problem with me joining in is … well, I get emotionally attached to girls I go to bed with, and/or vice versa.  So that, I like to limit. Not that I don’t have ample opportunity … I just prefer to not have sex with a girl unless we’re in a romantic dynamic.  The last girl I had sex with was someone who was my girlfriend at the time, and that was in early 2017.

But, actual sex aside: do I love sexual sparkles punctuating my life? Absolutely. I love the feminine mindset, physique, and form. I love that so many of my friends are gorgeous. If they wear skimpy clothing, or less, better yet. For example, I have a lovely cerebral shy girl long-term house guest. She has her own bedroom and we haven’t kissed or had sex, and I’ve made it clear I don’t want a girlfriend dynamic with her, but I enjoy the sexual sparkles that she radiates. If she wore short skirts and 6″ stilettos every day, she’d be a better house guest yet.

As to girlfriends, I’m polyamorous.  Until late 2014, I had two girl friends, one long-distance, and one living with me. The latter was of interest to another lesbian friend of ours, and there was reciprocity so I encouraged the dynamic, and now my two lesbian friends (one of them my former girl-friend) are living together and married. That’s great. I like people to be where they’re the happiest.  I don’t like pushing anyone out but if she chooses to leave because she would be happier elsewhere, she should be elsewhere.

As to the other girlfriend, it’s a long-distance dynamic. I love her very much. I haven’t seen her since 2016 but I expect I will again and meanwhile we write and talk. We used to be highly sexual and might well be again, or never again. I don’t know. I do know that she’s not interested in living with me, much as she enjoys spending time with me when we’re together.

As 2016 progressed, I became more and more focused on Miss X but also on cerebral shy girl dynamics, many of which I understood better thanks to focusing on Miss X. As such, I attracted more and more cerebral shy girls as friends — or sometimes more.  With one girl, we might have ended up in a relationship but she wasn’t ready. With another girl, we *did* end up in a relationship. She was — is — brilliant, intense and lovely.  So in late 2016 and early 2017, I had two brilliant, intense and lovely girlfriends again, one local and one long-distance. They knew of each other and each seemed to also realize that the other was a cool person.

As for Miss X, I remained focused on her. Did the new girl like how I was focused on Miss X? No. The new girl voiced some valid concerns. It wasn’t that she wasn’t getting enough of my focus, energy and attention. She got as much of that as she could handle.

Instead, her concern was that I was writing to Miss X, pouring energy into that dynamic, without any feedback that couldn’t be also be explained away by wishful thinking. If I posted something on social media, would Miss X even notice it among all the noise? I don’t know. If she posted something that seemed to be in reply, could I be sure? No.

Indeed. were this a typical person, I’d have stopped long ago for lack of clear feedback. But, Miss X is different. She’s shy. She communicates in subtleties. So in her case, perhaps she is reading what I write, and responding.  One day, I wrote an essay about having a difficult mental state. The next day, Miss X posted a picture of “The Scream.”  Coincidence? Maybe.  Or maybe she was saying “That’s how I feel. I’m glad that at least one person understands me and is reaching out to comfort me.” Until then I hadn’t realized how troubled Miss X might be. So I drove down to LA and parked my car about 20 miles south of where I’m guessing Miss X lives. I made myself available in case she needed to talk in person, or needed a hug.  I announced my availability via social media. Did Miss X know I was there? I don’t know. Did she show up? No.

My new girlfriend didn’t like my LA trip. She gave me an ultimatum.  If I chose to remain focused on Miss X, the new girl would leave. I chose to remain focused on Miss X. The new girl left.

I value Miss X. I intend to remain focused on her via social media until I hear her say “good morning” from the pillow next to mine, or until she blocks me on social media or otherwise tells me to go away.  Meanwhile, if what I write comforts her, great. I hope it does.

Miss X inspired my own Twitter account to change from a semi-deserted mess to something of a showcase and then later a celebration of my own journey in life.  But the spark that lit the flame as to my focus on Twitter, that was always Miss X.  It’s not just Twitter. Miss X has also inspired me to write a great many essays. She’s inspired me to become a better version of me, as tends to happen when I’m in love.

Even nowadays, when I post something, more often than not I hope that she sees it and likes me more for it, even if the only news item is that yes, I live a strange life. Truth be told, if Miss X ever were to move in with me, my Twitter account will most likely once again relapse into having a vastly diminished focus but I don’t plan to ever vanish from social media, nor pretend to be monogamous. I’m not monogamous. If Miss X becomes my girlfriend today, she’ll be one of two — she’d be local and my other girlfriend would remain long-distance. Maybe ten years from now, Miss X would be my only girlfriend. Maybe she’ll be one of three. I don’t know. I’ve had three girlfriends multiple times in the past, sometimes all in the same building. It worked well. Some of them became close friends, too. My lifestyle is Bohemian. If Miss X might be happy in it, she’s welcome to try it. I hope she does. Every day she loves being with me, she’s welcome to stay. I hope she does.

If Miss X wanted to also have dynamics with other people, male or female or whatever, would that be OK? Absolutely, even if she wakes up next to me every morning. I hope she does. She has her own journey though I hope to be part of it.

How does this reconcile to her current context? She deserves to be happy. If she’s miserable currently due to her current context then I assume she’s able and willing to change it. That doesn’t have to mean signing paperwork. It might just be as simple as telling person A “I’m moving out” and then picking up a phone and saying to person B (me, I hope but … who knows) “come get me, I’m ready. Take me with U.”

 

The new Au Pair Girl

The brunette stood in the doorway and announced to her husband: “I’m planning to hire an au pair girl.”

A few seconds passed.

“What prompted that?” he asked.

“She offered, and I decided that it was a good idea, since I’ve just started this new project.”

“She offered? So what prompted that?”

“Some things I’ve said and written.”

“Yes?”

“I once said in an interview that I was washing dishes and then I heard some music that inspired me to run out into the living room.  So she figured that I might better concentrate my energy on my creativity instead of washing dishes. Also, I once wondered aloud why it’s so easy to overdo it on cold pizza, and she took that as implying that I wasn’t eating well. So with her here, I also won’t have to worry about having healthy-for-me food to eat. Also, I once mentioned in an interview something to the effect of getting through the day. She took that as implying that it’s not always easy for me, and she figured that I sometimes need help, especially now with this new project, so … she offered.”

“She seems attentive. Someone you know?”

“Long-distance only. I’ve never met her. She’s  …” the brunette refused to say the word “just” though she paused slightly, then continued: “ … someone who follows me on social media. She does seem to pay attention more, and she does have a commendable amount of imitative.”

“She certainly does. I’m just concerned that we’ll have a wild-eyed eighteen-year-old in the house, obsessed with your music …”

“She’s not eighteen. She’s about the same age I am … a few years younger.”

“Oh. Well, by definition, au pair girls are typically younger than 30 … “

“It’s just a number. She’s young at heart.”

Her husband let that issue go, thought for a few seconds and then said:

“Let’s talk about what might go wrong, so that you’re not in a situation you regret.  For example, I don’t want to smell cigarette smoke, or now that pot is legalized  …”

“She doesn’t smoke. Or do drugs. Never has.”

“Wait, as in never, ever? Not even pot?”

“No.”

“Is the liquor cabinet at risk then?”

“She doesn’t drink, either.”

“Wow, miss Mormon, then.”

The brunette smiled and said: “She’s not religious.”

“Will I have ICE showing up to arrest and deport her?”

“She’s a US citizen.”

“So by au pair, you mean, a live-in maid? Like in the spare bedroom?”

“More of a personal live-in assistant.”

“I see.” He thought some more, then said, gingerly: “Not everyone is healthy, so it’s probably prudent to be concerned about contagious…”

“She’s just had a health checkup.  She’s supremely healthy, with paperwork to prove it.”

“Well, some, um, communicable diseases are … transmitted via toilet seats, and a general checkup doesn’t….”

“She has a clean bill of health as so socially transmitted issues too.”

“I see.” He thought some more.  Then: “Sometimes people have baggage, like suddenly a family member desperately needs financial help, and then she might try to make her problems someone else’s problems …”

“Her stepdaughter doesn’t live with her, is all grown up and is independent and thriving.  She doesn’t have brothers or sisters in the US. Her mom has her own house and finances, and is independent and thriving.”

“Jealous or crazy husband? Boyfriend?

“None. And, she’s not married.”

“Grandchildren?”

“None.”

“Pets?

“None.”

“Wow. I think you’ve just described the world’s most boring person.”

The brunette decided not to respond to that, and waited for the next concern to be mentioned. It was: “Well, for how long is this?”

“A few days at a time. Then she’ll go back home, attend to matters there, and then come back again the subsequent week, assuming it all keeps working out to mutual benefit.”

“So, you would pick her up from the bus station or train station, I assume?”

“No, she drives and has her own car.”

“Oh. Will she pass a background check?”

“Yes. She has a clearance, so she jokingly said that if the government trusts her, then…”

“That’s a line from Top Gun, the movie,” he replied. He was quiet, now puzzled. He frowned, and then he said:

“I have a huge mental vacuum as to envisioning this girl. So far almost every question I’ve asked and every answer you’ve given … it has described her by negation. She doesn’t smoke, doesn’t do drugs, doesn’t drink, doesn’t have a needy family, doesn’t have pets, doesn’t have a criminal record, doesn’t have a husband or boyfriend, doesn’t have family living with her, isn’t religious … having a car and being able to drive, and being healthy and having a clearance … those are positive attributes but she’s still a nebulous image. Not that I plan to interact with her at all; she’s 100% your problem. But she seems like the most nondescript person on earth.”

The brunette smiled, not replying verbally. Her husband continued looking puzzled. “I’m trying to envision her. What character in which movie would best describe her, do you think?” he asked, still puzzled.

“She’s a tall, blonde trans girl version of Jack in Titanic,” thought the brunette, but she decided not to say that.  She shrugged, not knowing what to say instead.

“What about paperwork? Taxes, government forms?”

“Only if she charges money. She’s not charging money.”

“Wait, she’s offering to do this at no charge?”

“Yes.”

“Why?!”

“To enable me to better concentrate on my creativity and not have to worry about dishes or food preparation — motivated by lots of benevolence toward me. ”

“Wow, that’s a lot of benevolence.”

The brunette nodded, and added: “Yes, and I’d like to accept the offer.”

“So is she independently wealthy? Like, is there going to be a Bentley in the driveway?”

“No, but probably an Audi A8 Quattro.”

“That’s a $100,000 car.”

“It’s 20 years old.”

“Still … that’s a very unusual au pair girl.”

The brunette nodded and smiled, happily.  Her husband was still puzzled, and asked: “So, how does she eat?”

“She has a very regimented eating routine, so it’s not like she’s going to eat us out of house and home. As in, she’ll bring her own groceries.”

“No, I mean, if she’s not charging then how does she make money or survive financially?”

“She’ll work on her laptop computer while I’m working.”

“What does she do?”

“She makes software, professionally. As in, custom database software, for large companies. She can work remotely wherever she is, though it helps her to have Internet access.”

“Oh, I see.  Now she’s less nebulous of an image. What else does she do?”

“She’s also a writer,” the brunette added, and immediately regretted it.

“What does she write about?”

“Me, mostly,” the brunette thought in reply but just said: “Mostly fiction.”

“Paid? Amateur?”

“A bit of both. Mostly amateur but she got paid to write an advice column of sorts, and some related work.”

“So am I going to read about my home life in a tabloid newspaper?”

“Not her style, at all. Not even remotely.”

“Still … get something in writing, as to confidentiality — notarized.”

“She thought of that too, and she has already created such a document.”

Her husband was surprised. He thought about it some more.  Then, he said, slowly:  ”Still, suddenly there’s a stranger in the house.”

“Yes, but we did something similar about five years ago. Not an au pair girl, but even so … it added a lot of value, and it worked out fine.”

“Yes … but how do we know our lives and property are safe? She might do something and then vanish…”

“We have no reason to believe she would do anything hurtful but in case I’m uneasy, she thought about that too, so she offered her US passport, to be put in the safe, handed to my attorney, or whatever. That implied a lot, right there.”

Her husband  nodded pensively. then asked: “References?”

“Yes, as a software engineer, but not as an au pair girl since she doesn’t normally do this.”

He processed that, then thought some more. Something was bothering him. He said, slowly: “Normally I’d be concerned that this is someone about whom we know very little, but in this case you seem to know so much about her that the pendulum has swung to where now I’m beyond reassured; I’m actually puzzled.”

“She has years and years of social media history that I could go browse, and that told me a lot.”

“I suppose so.”

There was a long pause. Then, he said: “I can’t see any reason why you shouldn’t do this. This is what you want?”

The brunette felt her eyes sparkling so she quickly looked down, and nodded.

He added: “One more thing: I don’t want to have to interact with her, at all. She’s totally your concern. I don’t even want to exchange pleasantries with her. I certainly don’t want to make small talk about my work or what I’ve done professionally. She can smile at me but I literally don’t want her talking to me unless the house is on fire and she’s yelling ‘Fire!’ ”

“I’ll convey that,” the brunette replied.

“Also, I expect to be away on location, so I’d prefer that you coordinate the schedule such that she’s here when I’m not, and vice versa.”

The brunette nodded agreeably. Then, she asked: “Any other questions, comments or concerns?”

He thought about it, then shook his head, but he observed: “That’s an interesting way of phrasing it.”

“I learned it from her.”

Her husband nodded some more, then looked at her quizzically and said: “You seem really energized. This new work project must be very good for you.”

The brunette nodded vigorously. She smiled one more time, and was about to leave, when she stopped. Sometimes, it’s possible to mislead by omission, and this development was the start of something so important that it deserved to be acknowledged. Even so, normally, she would just walk out. But this time … this time was different, in every way.

She stood still, her mind — and her heart — racing. Fragments of lyrics flashed through her mind: “we dance around the truth, somber and aloof, and we skip over the facts, just like actors” and “why must we play this game?” She closed her eyes,  took a deep breath, and pushed her shoulders back until they ached. She realized that this moment was a fork in the road — a chance to take a totally new direction, which included more candor. She felt the fear of the risk and the unknown as an almost palpable entity, but then envisioned two calm, brown eyes soothingly and silently bathing her, comforting her. That was the encouragement she needed.

She opened her eyes, then turned and faced him silently. They looked at each other for a few seconds. Somehow, he knew that this was an important moment.  Still looking at him calmly, she slowly said:

“Yes, but that’s not all there is to it.”

He inclined his head, as if to say: “Go on.”

She continued: “I get lonely.” She paused for a very long time, to let that sink in, then added: “I can feel lonely even while someone is socially interacting with me — as in, I am acutely aware of the absence of the intense type of emotional connection that I crave.” She paused for a long time, to allow the ripple effect of that statement to circle ever wider in his consciousness. Then, she added: “Nobody’s fault … but having her here intends to change that.”

They looked at each other for many seconds more. She was about to say more, but then realized that her earnest eye contact was underscoring all the implications of what she’d just said. They kept looking at each other, in mutual acknowledgement of what had been said, and more: what had been implied. They each knew that this span of silent eye contact was primal and crucially important. Then, he looked down, his mind now racing too, and drawing several more conclusions. Here was the perfect opportunity to object, he realized. He also knew that he wouldn’t object. He finally looked up at her again, as if to say “okay” — to everything.

She nodded slowly, in full acknowledgement, then turned and left. She went to her bedroom and closed the door. She lay on her bed for a long time, experiencing the intense rush of multiple strong emotions, while telling herself:  “Feel it, experience it, live it … this is the visceral life you crave. Here it is. Savor it.”  She focused on how she was feeling, and on how she was feeling about her feelings. For once, she didn’t also feel guilt, nor did she feel ridiculous. She noticed these absences with surprise and delight. She also noticed her delight, and felt joyous about that.  “You can’t help how you feel,” the blonde had taught her. Evidently, accepting that premise — it was paying dividends already.

It took the brunette perhaps half an hour to feel in control again. No amusement-park roller-coaster could compete with what she’d just experienced, she thought. Then, she thought further back in time, and thought about her adult life … about forty years ago, it had seemed doomed to go in a less-than-ideal direction but then one crucial decision had changed the course of her life. Then, approximately eleven years later, two more crucial decisions in the same year, each of which had also dramatically changed the course of her life yet again.  Three years after that, another important decision, resulting in another dramatic change in direction … toward a course that had continued for two-and-a-half decades. She thought about all that, and about the events of the last few months.

Then, she picked up her phone and typed: “Green light. When can you be here?” … and smiled happily when she saw the reply.

 

The Causal Chain of Violence against Sex Workers

Sequence of events:

      • A brothel opens in an elegant area. Some neighbors protest, call it a public nuisance and have the ultimate weapon that they can get the government to forcibly shut it down.
      • The brothel moves to a less-elegant area. The same scenario repeats itself. Some neighbors protest, call it a public nuisance etc.
      • The brothel moves to a worse area yet. Some neighbors protest, etc.
      • The brothel moves to a bad area. Some neighbors protest. This time, the brothel stays. It has nowhere else to viably go. Hostilities escalate. The neighbors do get the government to forcibly close the brothel.
      • Brothel sex workers go indie (independent) using the Internet to advertise and screen clients. Some citizens complain, and pressure the government to forcibly shut down website after website as such.
      • Brothel sex workers turn to escorting agencies, who specialize in advertising and screening clients. Some citizens complain, and pressure the government to classify these as sex traffickers, and get them shut down, with draconian punishments intended to make an example out of whomever they arrest as such.
      • Indie sex workers involve people to act consensually as security guards. Government classifies these as pimps or as living off the earnings of a prostitute, and forcibly shuts that down, again with draconian punishments.
      • Some violent criminals force or mislead some victims into sex slavery.  Properly, this is universally considered abhorrent. and the proper domain of government going after such people to arrest them. Lobbyists then pressure governments to do a bait-and-switch, first getting public support and funding on the premise of going after sex slavery, and then unethically diverting those resources away from a focus on sex slavery (inherently non-consensual), focusing instead on shutting down sex workers (inherently consensual), the latter having been a major target of these unethical lobbyists all along.  When someone points out how few sex slavery criminals get arrested yet how many sex workers, the arguments dismiss the rights of the sex workers as acceptable collateral damage, as in: they were involved in illegal activity anyway. This argument evades two key points:
        • That this wasn’t what the resources were properly intended to be focused on
        • That sex work being classified as illegal doesn’t mean it should be.

        Nevertheless, the resultant cultural atmosphere becomes more poisoned yet toward sex workers, who now have to deal with the additional taint of a criminal record and being unfairly lumped in with sex slavery criminals, in articles by journalists who blur the issues that already are, at best, imprecise in the minds of much of the citizenry.

      • Indie sex workers join forces, working together for improved safety. Government calls that running an illegal brothel, and forcibly shuts that down.
      • Indie sex workers work solo, screening carefully and negotiating clearly in apartments and hotels. Some neighbors protest, call them a public nuisance and have the ultimate weapon that they can get the government to forcibly shut her (assuming the sex worker is female) down. Government uses stooges who pretend to be clients, and even though clear negotiations protect the safety of the sex worker, once a trade for sexual services has clearly been negotiated, the government agents do forcibly shut her down.
      • Indie sex workers take to the streets, working there. Some neighbors protest and call them a public nuisance and have the ultimate weapon that they can get the government to forcibly arrest them.
      • The indie sex worker moves to a less-elegant area. Some neighbors protest, etc.
      • The indie sex worker moves to a worse area yet. Some neighbors protest, etc.
      • The sex worker moves to such a bad area that there is viably no other place to move to, working alone and with few security measures.
    • The further down this list a sex worker works, the greater the vulnerability for being a victim of physical violence, and the less likely it is that law enforcement will protect her. This attracts violent cowards who prey on the weak, often with inner demons as to their own sexual issues, that they project onto sex workers.As to how the rest of the story plays out, see the newspaper articles announcing that yet another sex workers has been found dead as a victim of violence. Those who played their part in driving the sex worker there, simply shrug without sympathy. They figure that, by choosing sex work; she should bear the consequences. They classifying themselves as blameless in the sequence of events.Though technology has helped improve safety, this basic sequence of events plays out in essentially the same way, over and over. To me, one thing is clear: fighting this battle is futile once the moral high ground has been ceded to our adversaries. From then on it’s a slippery slope to eventually standing alone in an alley in a bad area, with a dangerous shadowy figure approaching, intent on violence.

      IMAG3233Sex work (with the “work” part denoting consensuality) whether it’s prostitution, pro Domme work, escorting, pole dancing, exotic dancing, modeling, x-rated movie starring, or any work having a sexual element as a material part of one’s marketability, e.g., a cocktail waitress or a singer whose appeal involves emphasis on sexual desirability) is a basic right just as much as is running a lemonade stand, a bakery or a law office. The proper role for government is to protect from violence those who earn a living with mutually consensual trade — but when it comes to sex workers, the proper role of the government sometimes gets corrupted and inverted, becoming an instrument of injustice, driving things ever further away from sexually themed activities.

      Tactically, that is where I propose that we, as sex workers, can focus our efforts: on understanding and then dismantling the mechanism whereby citizens get to pressure governments to harass us. Few such meddling citizens have the integrity to be convinced that they’re in the wrong, so our focus should instead be on the mainstream of citizens, the general public consisting of fairly reasonable people, who might themselves be irritated by the stifling effects of such meddling citizens, corrupting the proper role of law enforcement agencies and harassing those who are criminals only because some lawmakers voted to classify them as such..

      However, the battle fundamentally depends on where the moral high ground is.

      The fight will take us into direct confrontation with forces that I consider modern reincarnations and variations of the mindset that enabled witch-burning, the Inquisition, the Dark Ages … the forces that have represented darkness through history. It will also take us into indirect confrontation with those who do not spearhead the issues yet empower those who do, by valuing the bland comfort zone of their own lives higher than the injustices that are done in perpetuation thereof.

      We don’t have to go play video games, watch movies or read books to experience the visceral clarity and intensity of a life-or-death battle between good vs. evil. It’s right here, in modern life, and the person on the side of the good is the one wearing the fishnet stockings.

      She’s isolated, but on her side she has three powerful weapons: right, reason and reality. She’s on the right side of history. I’m betting on her ultimately being victorious.


      Whenever there’s a battle of ideas, I see a lot of people aiming their energy at opposing their adversaries, but by my standards I don’t see enough energy being directed at giving aid and comfort to my allies, yet the empowerment effect of such efforts can be huge. So, that’s what this document is intended to do.

      My target audience:

      1. My proteges and allies: sex workers in the context where our work is criminalized or might well again be, which means: everywhere on Earth.

      This article is intended to say: “If you feel you’re being treated unfairly then I actually think you have good reason to be upset.”

      2. Allies of sex workers.

      This article is intended to say: “Thank you. The cause you’re supporting is just, and here’s a vivid reminder as to why.”

      * * *

      I’d consider it a bonus is this document reaches those who are open to approaching the issue only after putting dogmatic ideology pointedly aside.

      As to anyone else, they can’t be reasoned with, by their own admission. Reasoning with unreasonable people is a mistake. It would grant them a moral high ground that they don’t deserve.

      Someone dogmatically hostile to sex work would dismiss whatever I wrote anyway, whether it made sense or not. Dogmatic ideology has opposed reason for millennia, and that’s been its approach throughout its bloody history. My article won’t change that. A dogmatic ideology cannot be purified. It can at best be opposed — and I do — but that’s not the purpose of my article.

Email to CPCinfo@nola.gov

Hello,

Thank you for accepting public input on the issue of whether or not exotic dancer clubs in New Orleans should be left alone so that their survival depends on market forces, not governmental control.

By conservative standards, all sex work should be illegal — and it doesn’t stop there. Gays, tattoos, unusual hairstyles, piercings, smoking pot, drinking alcohol, bikinis, outspoken women … women who vote … you can roll all social progress back to the Dark Ages, which were dark precisely because conservative standards ruled the day. Why anyone would think that conservative standards are good for mankind in general, and New Orleans in particular, I can’t imagine.

By pseudo-feminist standards, all sex workers are oppressed and should be rescued by making their livelihood illegal. How this makes any sense, and why sex work should be singled out, in spite of the evidence that sex workers choose this work, I also can’t imagine.

By free-market standards, and feminist standards, sex workers, including exotic dancers and the clubs that provide a place to work, are people earning a living with work. If there’s market demand for their services, then I urge you to step aside and leave the people free interact in voluntary trade to mutual enrichment. That’s the basis of market forces in general, and there’s no objective reason for picking out sex work and punishing specifically that industry.

Subjectively, however, there IS indeed much basis for singling out sex workers such as exotic dancers. Sex work offends the sensitivities of many. However, on the basis of “it offends some” you could go shut down most business sectors in the economy, e.g., vegetarians are offended by meat, and some radical Christians are offended by alcohol, some radical environmentalists are offended by automobiles, some radical Islamists are offended by much of what happens in greater New Orleans on a daily basis. Then again, government interference in the economy also offends many, so if you go shut down anything that offends anyone, that includes government. So … that entire train of thought (shut down something if it offends some) reaches a logical inconsistency.

I’ve been to enough city council and county government meetings to conclude that citizen constituency could not even reach a consensus on whether or not to leave the room if the building were on fire. History has shown that pandering to citizen pressure politics to negate others’ livelihood is neither fair nor workable.

I propose that, in this case and every case, government step aside and let the market forces be the determinant of the future of the exotic dancers and clubs.

Thank you for your consideration.

~Tanya Charbury

Inserting Myself into the Story-Line of the 1987 AllNighter Movie, Part 2

[Continued from part 1, here]

I waited, wondering how the story was going to progress.  Far too soon, there was a half-hearted knock on my hotel room door.  I opened it. Molly stood there, tears glistening in her lovely eyes again. I stood aside, and she came in, and fell onto the bed, face down.  I waited.

After more than a minute, she said: “He didn’t even open the door.”

I processed that, and sympathized with her disappointment, saying a comforting phrase as such.

“He probably knew it was me, and didn’t want to see me again,” she said.

“Perhaps,” I acknowledged. “But, how do we know he was in there?”

“I heard voices, and laughter.”

“Could he have had the television on, and perhaps have left, or been in the bathroom or in the shower, or out on the patio?”

She was aghast. “Wow, I didn’t even consider those possibilities. I’m so ready to be rejected that it doesn’t take much for me to just assume that I’m unwelcome.”

I sympathized, and said so.  “Shall we call him?”  I asked.

“That is a good idea, yes.”  She seemed hopeful again, and reached for the phone. I was about to suggest she first plan out the dialog and translate her natural enthusiasm and openness into the sort of bland presentation that was more likely to be palatable to typical people, but just as I was about to say, “wait …” she was already dialing his room number, and a couple of seconds later, she spoke: “Hello, it’s Molly. My false eyelashes are fine now, and I’d like to come say good night.”

I could hear his voice from where I was sitting: “Listen, Molly, I have a guest here, and I really want to focus on her, so we should just say good night now.”

Her face fell, “I’m sorry … I didn’t know … I’m sorry … good night,” and she hung up.

“Well, that’s that,” she said. “He has someone else. Wow, that didn’t take long.”

I winced. “Ouch,” I said.

She nodded. “Gawd, this hurts. Nazareth summed it up well, in their Love Hurts lyrics.  I mean … what I feel for him is not even love, and even so, this rejection already hurts so much. Imagine if I’d actually loved him and knew he was in there with someone else, whom he liked so much more than me. It’d be excruciating.”

I nodded.

She sat on the bed, slumped. Then a horrible thought crossed her mind, and she slowly said, “For example, the guy on whom I have a crush might just be in bed with Mary Lou right now. Come to thing of it, he probably is.”  Her shoulders slumped more.

I came over and sat down next to her. I held out my arms comfortingly.  She shot me a pained look, and just remained sitting there.  I remained in position, and kept my arms open, smiling gently and waiting. Eventually she sighed and leaned toward me. I wrapped my arms around her, and she pressed her face against my upper chest.  Finally, she put her arms around me too, and after a minute or two, I could feel her warm tears against my skin.

The pain of many years seemed to finally hit her all at once. She held on, crying bitterly in frustration, embarrassment and shame for a long time. I held on, and slowly rocked her.  At some point she pulled away, and she looked down at the mess she’d made as her tears, and more, had run down my chest and made a large wet area at the neckline of my evening gown.  She tried to pull away more, apologizing for making a mess but she was having a hard time articulating.

“It’s fine.  I needed to wash it anyway. Don’t worry about it.  Come here,” I said, and slightly applied pressure, pulling her toward me again.  She hesitated and then gave in.  “You are probably way overdue for processing some sadness,” I said gently, holding her in a comforting embrace.  “Sadness and more,” I added.

“More, yes,” came a  muffled reply.  “I feel so embarrassed, so ashamed. I’m such a failure. I mean, not in life, but in this … I’m basically trying to give sex away and I still can’t get anyone to be interested. I feel so deeply undesirable. I wanted a boyfriend and never did end up having one. Then, I thought: well. at least I can experience having sex. And even there, I can’t get anyone interested.”

I said nothing, just squeezed her a little more tightly for a few seconds.

“Not anyone I care to seduce, anyway. I assume if I stood on Hollywood Boulevard holding a ‘free sex’ sign, even I could finally find someone who wants to have sex with me, but I was hoping for less desperate measures.”

I smiled. She didn’t speak for a long time, and finally said, “I haven’t been held like this, in years — actually, never as an adult.  I feel so … comforted.  And it’s more than just you holding me.  I feel that you understand me.  Actually, I feel like you’re the only one who does.” She thought for a while. “I mean, my parents care very much but it’s almost like someone caring for a fragile, exotic pet. With you it’s different.  You care, but you also seem to understand me. But there’s something about how you deal with me … and it’s different than how anyone else deals with me.  I can’t quite figure it out.”

I gave her another squeeze, and waited.

“Wait, I think I got it. Don’t talk, please.  I really want to figure this out.”  She was quiet for another minute or so. Finally, she announced: “I’ve got it.  You don’t look down on me.  Others always treat me like they feel sorry for me, like they’re shaking their heads patronizingly at my latest folly or concern.  You don’t do that.  You’ve seen me in the most embarrassing situations and yet you don’t treat me as if I’m weak or stupid, even though I feel like that about myself. It’s almost like you think I deserve to be taken .. that’s it.  That’s the essence of it. You’re the one person who really takes me seriously.”

I pondered this, and smiled. “I do,” I agreed.

She was quiet for a few more seconds, and then said: “Maybe you’re right.  Maybe we do have similar mental wiring that’s different than that of typical people. ” She pondered this for a minute or so.  “I used to feel alone, even when there were people around, even tonight at the Fiesta. People were having fun, but somehow I felt … disconnected from them.”

“Maybe sex with your friend in room 905 would have felt the same way, to you.”

“I see what you mean, about connectedness,” she said. “How do you connect, I mean, really connect?”

“I offer to take girls up to my room when their false eyelashes are having issues. That’s the only way I ever met someone with whom I feel this sense of connectedness,” I said, playfully.

“Wait, you don’t have anyone either?”

“I do, now. You’re here.”

“But, before me.”

“I have a guy friend with whom the sexual attractiveness factor is mutually zero. He’s also my roommate, and I think he has mental wiring like mine.  We’re friends and we communicate well intellectually, which is great, but it’s not an emotionally intimate connection too.  For example, I’ve never hugged him like I’m hugging you.”

“Nobody else?”

I shook my head. “Some people came closer than most but … no.”

“Wow, that’s a lonely life,” she blurted out.

I smiled and then she added, “as is mine, I just realized. Wow. I’m glad we found each other.” She held onto me for a minute or two longer.

“Now I’m afraid of losing you,” she confessed.  “Perhaps you and I are better than typical people.  Perhaps we’re not.  But, we’re certainly different from typical people, yet alike as to each other.  When we talk or hold each other, like this, there’s understanding and true connectedness, and comfort. I feel like I’ve known you for a long time. Is that ridiculous?”

“Well, the degree of mutual understanding we have accomplished … that would have taken typical people a long time, so maybe that’s why, yes?”

She nodded.  “Why are we so different from them? Why do they take so long?”

“You and I open up, and share our thoughts and feelings enthusiastically.  So it’s like a 100-miles-per-hour road with no stop signs or red lights, just green lights all the way. Things can move quickly.”

“They can indeed, wow. It’s such a relief to open up like this.  Normally, I don’t, because …” she hesitated.

“… how you naturally are, so spontaneous, open and benevolent, that ends up with you being ridiculed and ostracized, and you get your feelings hurt, by typical people?”

“All the time,” she confessed.

“I plan to be around for a long time, reminding you, but if something happens to me, it’s crucially important that you’re clear that if everyone in the world were like you, it’d be a so much nicer place. Can we agree on that?”

“Well …” she thought about it.  Then: “I see your point, and yes. The only problem is that typical people can’t deal with my openness and enthusiasm but inherently there’s nothing wrong with how I am — even though I always felt there was, and it’s totally alien to me to now have to get used to me being not just OK but better than OK.  It’s almost like I have to relearn that it’s OK to pee in someone’s swimming pool, and more than OK, it’s actually good. I mean … it’ll take me some time to get used to all this.  But, yes, I follow the logic.  And I hope nothing happens to you.”  She gave me a squeeze.

She was quiet, and then drew back slightly, and as she pulled out of my arms, she took one of my hands in each of hers, and held them in an intimate gesture, and said: “I just realized I know hardly anything about you.  Where do I find you?  How do I get to spend more time with you? What’s your name? And … I mean this nicely, but … what are you?  I can’t quite figure out if you’re a boy or a girl.  You seem to be a mixture.  I mean, it’s a sexy mixture — you sort of remind me of Prince, who’s androgynous too  — but … anyway, please tell me about yourself.”

I did. I told her my name and explained that I’m a trans girl, and what that means. I explained that I did escorting only part-time, and normally I worked as a software engineer, mostly from my condo near the Marina.  She absorbed it all, and then told me her full name, and more about her life situation.

Soon, we were talking about my escorting work. I explained how I enjoyed the excitement and feeling of empowerment that came with having sex with a stranger who wanted me.  “Based on your agenda tonight, I probably don’t have to explain that,” I added.

She nodded pensively, and said: “I do ‘get’ that. I was so intent on losing my virginity tonight. First, I tried to tell CJ — the guy on whom I have a crush — that I am crazy about him. Or should I say, was crazy about him? Suddenly he seems so far away, and so … two-dimensional.”  She thought about it for a while, then added: “Tonight, my hope was to seduce him. It would have made this the perfect night, for me.  But, he was — is — such a jackass and he took it all the wrong way and I just decided that I’m wasting my life away, and I need to stop doing so.  So, I figured that if he wasn’t going to take my virginity then I’d visit this musician guy tonight, for that purpose instead. I was totally okay with that.”

She took a deep breath, and continued: “Anyway, that was such a colossally embarrassing experience that I feel totally turned off now.  I guess I’ll just become an old maid and end up with a stove and several cats when I’m old.  I mean, I do buy your point that, as you did, I could learn the social dynamics of typical people and eventually bond with them to some extent but there would always be missing intimacy.  And you’re right, that connectedness really is part of what I always assumed would be there, as part of sex – and if not, it’d feel pretty hollow to me. So I can either work extra hard and maybe eventually be able to give my virginity away, and end up with an emotionally disappointing experience.  That doesn’t bode well for my future sex life.”

“I see your point, but as long as you’re realistic in your expectations, there’s a lot to be said for being bent over and used sexually by a guy in a primal way as if he’s just bought you at a slave auction or dragged you into his cave. I mean, there’s not much emotional bonding there but … it IS sometimes hot. For me, anyway. I’m good at seducing guys. I could teach you. ”

“Really?!” she said, her interest piqued. I looked her up and down. She bit her lower lip, pondering all this.

“Your eagerness is very sexy,” I observed. “To me, anyway.”

The mood in the room had changed in the last minute or so. We both felt it.

“As to where I go for sex with emotional intimacy …” she said, and looked at me questioningly, demurely yet pointedly too. Her lips were slightly apart. She moistened them with a flick of her tongue.  She sat up more squarely, and leaned back slightly, pushing her shoulders back and down, and pushing her chest out.  She flicked her hair and inclined her head slightly, and looked at me with a peculiar kind of calculating look.

I was breathing unusually fast. I said: “I take back what I said.  I don’t think there’s anything I can teach you as to being supremely seductive.  If the guy in room 905 saw you now, and actually paid attention for at least long enough to actually observe you, I can’t imagine how he could resist.”

“Yes, but he wouldn’t actually pay attention. He’d be too busy telling me to go away.”

I nodded.  “His loss,” I said. I looked at her, and realized I was biting my lower lip, too. I also sat up more upright, with my back arched. We were looking at each other.

“I wonder who gets to say it first,” I said aloud.

She took a deep breath. I could see that her mind was racing.  We both felt an intense mutual attraction.

“You’re not doing this because you’re feeling sorry for me,” she observed.

“I’m interested in you, personally, sexually,” I replied. “As in, here and now.”

She didn’t move her face, but her eyes moved to one side as if she were lost in thought, looking at an object that had been in her peripheral vision. Then, she looked at me directly and intensely.

“You mean, you get to take my virginity tonight,” she said bluntly. I flicked my hair, and nodded slowly.  Our eyes rested on each other for several seconds, and our lips were slightly open.  Then, she looked down.  Something had ruined her mood.  She said, quietly, “I really don’t have a lot of money on me, and I have hardly anything in my bank account. I have maybe a hundred dollars to my name.  I don’t know what you charge but … it’s probably more than that.”

I pulled her hands toward me, and she looked up into my eyes, warily.  I explained: “Molly, with you, it’s personal. I like you as an individual.  This has nothing to do with business.  No money changes hands between us as such, now or ever.  I like you and with every passing minute, you’re growing on me more yet.”

Her eyes widened. She smiled, then smiled broadly.

I continued: “But, there is one reason why I might say no.  I feel very closely connected to you.  If you and I end up in bed, I’m sure I’ll emotionally get wrapped up in you and I’ll want to see you again and again, socially and sexually.  So I’m not saying that I expect you to make an infinite commitment, but I’m asking you if this is just a one-night stand for you, because if yes then I will probably end up pining after you for a very, very long time.  While I can still think straight and say no, I’d rather say no for that reason — and only for that reason.  I might never find another ‘you’ and if, after tonight, I never see you again, I’d miss you very much, perhaps for many years, and perhaps for the rest of my life.”

She processed this for several seconds. She blinked several times, and her eyes teared up. She swallowed hard. Her voice thick, she said: “I would love to have this be ongoing too. I just didn’t realize that’s what you wanted. It is so refreshing to be able to candidly and openly say that I like you, without fearing that I might overwhelm or alienate you  I can just sit here, emotionally naked, and say ‘I like you and I want you in my life.'”

“I’m delighted, but since I’m at risk for some serious heartbreak, can we give the premise a shakedown?”

“You know, typical people don’t talk like that,” she smiled, suddenly confident and at ease. “Yes, go ahead.”

“Well, not to be ungrateful, but don’t you still have feelings for CJ?”

She thought about it. “Yes, I do.  Pity, mostly — and a little bit of disgust, at him. Also, some shame in myself for having focused on him.”

“Wow, okay,” I responded. “Next, how do I fit into your family dynamic? You might have to say: ‘Hi Mom and Dad, here’s my new girlfriend who also sort of looks like my boyfriend but don’t worry, the sex is great. She’s highly skilled, see, being a part time sex worker. Why, you might have even seen her at local hotels, in one of the lounges.'”

“I’m an adult. I get to choose whom I romance, and sleep with.  And you’re a massive improvement over CJ … and the musician … and actually anyone else I know. Truth be told, though, I suspect my parents might just be relieved I finally found someone with whom I’m happy.”

“How about your friends?”

“Killer will go … I don’t know where.  CJ … doesn’t matter.  Val is getting married.  Gina will go live her life. I’ll see her sometimes, but if she gets to meet you, she’ll love you.  She’s very open-minded.”

I smiled, relieved. “How about your work?” I asked.

She responded by saying: “I graduate tomorrow… ” she glanced at the bedside clock, and said: “… technically, today, at the end of my four year degree in Fine Arts, which I enjoyed but which enables no specific gainful employment.  I don’t have to be anywhere for a job.  I don’t have one.  I plan to keep living in LA and I’ll probably move into my parent’s garage.”

“Or, you could move in with me.  If we continue to get along as well as I suspect we will, I’d love to have you living with me.  I live in West LA, near the Marina. You might enjoy bicycling along the beach path, and exploring the area. It’s nicely elegant. And, I make enough money to pay the rent, solo.  My roommate has wanted to buy a house in North LA County, and I wish him well but I don’t want to go along with that.  So, come be my new roommate … and more.”

She seemed shocked. She smiled and nodded thoughtfully. “Wow, this really is becoming quite the happy picture, isn’t it?”

I nodded and smiled, too, and I added: “At least one part of a typical girl-girl dynamic, we do follow.  A classic lesbian second date is when one girl moves in with the other.”

“I guess you being a girl does make me a lesbian, then.  But you’re an unusual sort of girl, so maybe I’m an unusual sort of lesbian. Or, I’m bi since I was attracted to CJ too, and the guy tonight.  Wow,” she said, pensively. Then, she frowned. “What if I’m bad at sex?”

“Then think of all the fun we’ll have, teaching you how to be better.  Seriously, though, I’m not worried.  You have enthusiasm. The rest … it works itself out.”

She smiled, relieved.  Then, she frowned again. “What if you find me physically unattractive?”

“What, after you get mauled by a bear?”

“No, right now.”

“No risk of that.  But I suppose I should undress and inspect you before we have sex,” I said, playfully.

“You should,” she responded in kind, relaxing and smiling. Then: “What if I’m a bad kisser?” she asked.

I smiled. I crawled toward the bedside lamp, and turned it off so that only one lamp was illuminating the room.  It made the ambiance much more romantic. I pulled off my high-heeled shoes, and then took hers off too.  I knelt upright on the bed, and reached down and moved my evening gown up until I could pull it off, over my head. Her eyes went to my breasts. “Wow,” she said.

I pointed to her as in: “Your turn.”  She took a deep breath and stripped off her evening gown too.  We were kneeling, facing each other, topless, me wearing just a black thong, while she was wearing sexy white cotton panties.  She looked at me warily.  I pointedly looked at her breasts, and smiled happily, then said: “You are hereby officially approved.”

She hesitated: “Are you sure? I don’t have large …”

“No, you don’t. And yet I find you very attractive.  Do you find that hard to believe?”

She nodded.

I responded with: “I understand. You don’t fit the stereotypical-girl look.  And yet, you’re attractive to me.  So let me ask you: do I fit the stereotypical-girl look?”

She seemed startled, and shook her head.

“Do you find me attractive?”

“Very.”

“So, it’s possible to look non-stereotypical and yet be attractive, yes?”

She laughed, happily — as if an emotional weight had been lifted. “Yes!! Wow, where have you been all my life?”

“That’s how I feel about you, too.”

The mood in the room was becoming sexually tense again.  We were kneeling upright on the bed, facing each other.

“I’ve never felt so naked, and yet so naturally at ease as such. I feel accepted, and more … appreciated, and more … cherished,” she said.

“You are cherished,” I responded. She sighed happily, and arched her back more yet. She looked delectably sexy.

“As to you being a bad kisser, I would suggest two objectives for kissing,” I said.

She looked at me questioningly.

“Experiencing sensation, and exploring,” I suggested.

She thought about it.  “That simplifies it,” she said, and put her hands on my upper arms as she moved closer to me.  She looked at me with half-closed eyes, radiating an enthusiasm that I, too, felt.  Our lips met, initially barely touching.  Then … more.

* * *

More than three hours later, at 4 a.m., we agreed to get some sleep.  We set the bedside alarm for 8 a.m., and fell asleep in each other’s arms.

 

 

 

Inserting Myself into the Story-Line of the 1987 AllNighter Movie, Part 1

[… in the scene where Molly is sitting at a table in the lounge of the hotel, in the company of the musician whom she hopes to seduce.  As to the context of this story, please see: Jumanji, Pleasantville and the AllNighter]

I sat at a table in the hotel lounge, observing the nearby girl and guy, and hearing their conversation. I could relate to the girl’s mindset. I respected her enthusiasm, and I could see how hard it was for her to venture into new territory so brazenly, trying to seduce this guy when evidently she didn’t seem to have much experience as a seductress. My heart went out to her. I silently wished her well.

When her false eyelash became loose, and the guy offered to take her up to his room, I sensed the girl would be feeling very disempowered and disoriented, and by then the guy was already in totally the wrong mindset as to her agenda. That didn’t mean she should give up on her plan, but it seemed to me she could benefit from some support, first.

I got up and went to their table, and crouched down so my face was at the girl’s eye level. I spoke up: “False eyelashes can be a tricky problem and eye drops are not the best solution. I have a room here too. If you’d like some ‘girl help’ then I’m offering. After you can see and function socially again, then you can go say good-night to your friend from a position of renewed empowerment. So I’m an option, if you would like my assistance.”

The two were quiet for a few seconds while they absorbed this. Molly hesitated but the guy seemed eager to make her my problem. He thanked me and announced it to be a great idea. That left her few options and made me wonder if I was actually helping or hindering her, but by then it was too late so I tried to make things as good for her as I could. I helped her up. Could be she did appreciate my assistance and did want to exit the embarrassing situation as quickly as possible, with the entire seduction situation now being seen as hopeless anyway. It was hard to tell what she was thinking. She got up hesitatingly and the guy also got up, and encouraged her to go with me, He agreed that later, if she wanted to call him and say good-night, she was welcome to do so. He told her his room number, and he waited for me to take it from there. He seemed enthused to exit the situation, albeit nicely.

Molly seemed to be having a hard time seeing and thinking clearly. I put my arm around her waist and propelled her to the elevator, then to my room. I told her what I was about to do, and why, before I did each step. I donned some surgical rubber gloves that, as an escort, I had handy. I helped her lie on her back, on the bed. I soaked a square piece of cotton with some eye make-up remover, then gently placed it on one of her eyes, then did the same with another square and her other eye. When I gently lifted each square up, the false eyelash came off along with it.

“There,” I said. “All better. You have lovely eyes, with or without false eyelashes, though I love your enthusiasm for looking as seductive as you possibly can. In my opinion, you look great and the guy is seriously missing out. I bet you’d be good in bed too, given the chance. Enthusiasm makes all the difference, and you clearly have no lack thereof.”

“I feel very un-sexy right now. I feel so ridiculous.”

“Because you tried so hard and you totally failed?”

She winced and nodded.

“You can’t control other people, and how they react. You can only give it as good as you’ve got, and that’s exactly what you did, isn’t it? Did you half-ass it, and hold back somewhat or did you throw everything into the effort?”

“Everything.”

“That’s as much as anyone can do. And believe me, you have a lot going for you. You look lovely.”

“Not enough.”

“Maybe you’re not the problem. Maybe you could have looked like Miss California and he’d still have said ‘no.’ It’s not like people’s resistance is guaranteed to crumble when the seduction is attempted by someone hot enough. Maybe you’re just not his type. .”

“Maybe I’m nobody’s type.”

“I work as an escort, and I often observe the sexual dynamics going on around me.  Believe me, there are a great many guys — and girls – who would just love to take someone with your looks to bed. You’re lovely.”

Molly tried to process all this. “Then why have I never had a boyfriend? Ever? In all my high school and college years? I feel so lonely and miserable. It’s the one thing I wanted the most, and I didn’t experience it. Tomorrow I graduate and I still haven’t even ever … I mean …”

“Been with someone sexually?”

“Yes! I’m missing out. I hate it.”

“Maybe it’s not your looks. You look great. Maybe it’s your attitude.”

“Like, I’m trying too hard?”

“That’s maybe how it looks or feels but it’s more complex than that. From what I saw and heard in the lobby, you seem to be so intensely and innocently enthusiastic, in a way that most people just aren’t. It’s like you’re pure in a way that confuses them. They’re like people trying to look into the sun and they just can’t handle the intensity.”

“So, I should tone it down?”

“I don’t think it’s a matter of degree. It’s more complicated than that. I think you approach things in a way most people don’t, and half-assing it won’t magically align you with them.”

“Well, what am I supposed to do?!”

“I don’t know. I had the same problem. I learned how to run a simulation so that socially I can connect with typical people, but it’s learned behavior. I can’t just naturally connect with them. When I’m spontaneous with typical people, there’s almost always a misunderstanding in communication, leading to conflict.”

“That describes my situation so perfectly. Like, there’s this guy I have a crush on, and tonight I was about to tell him but it all went wrong so now he’s mad at me and really it’s all a misunderstanding.”

“Another guy yet?”

“Yes.” She explained in more detail.

“Wow,” I responded, feeling less than eloquent, processing all this. Then, I said: “I think my mind works in a way that’s just somehow different than the brains of typical people. Maybe you’re the same. You certainly seem to be having the same frustrations I had, and still do as soon as I let my guard down and allow myself to be spontaneous and open.”

“You? You look so polished.”

“That’s a good choice of words. It’s a polished, learned skill.”

“You seem so sincere, though.”

“I am sincere but I have to translate how I feel into how to express it. It’s like wanting to tell the truth based on an idea I have in my head in English, but now I have to translate it to come across accurately to a German-speaking audience, with their own cultural issues.”

“That sounds exhausting. You’re always on guard, and always doing extra work.”

“Yes, it is, but I’ve kinda gotten used to it. It’s not really all that bad, actually. It’s kind of like knowing how to play a song in C major and then somehow you have to move it up to G major and shift the notes so it still all works.”

“Oh, you’re into music too!”

“Very much.”

We beamed at each other.

“So, you’re doing this translating very well,” she complimented me.

“Oh, I’m not doing it now. Oh, wow. I just realized that. I’m just being … myself, with you. And somehow, you’re still here, not freaked out.”

“So this is how you naturally are, spontaneously?”

“Yes.”

“Well, you seem fine to me.”

“Maybe you have the same mental wiring issue I do. Do you feel comfortable with this conversation?”

“Totally.”

“Whom else did you have conversations with today? Think back.”

She did, and named some names.

“Did the conversations feel like maybe there was a communication gap, and misunderstanding?”

“Yes, very much so. Wow. So maybe I should translate everything, like you do? Maybe then I’d have a boyfriend too?

“Maybe, yes.”

“Will you teach me how?”

“Sure, though it’s sort of just something I developed of necessity. It’s not a formal skill.”

“Can you teach me tonight so I can still go seduce that guy?”

“I don’t think I can do it that quickly.”

“So I should think how a typical girl would behave and simulate that as part of moving toward what I want?”

“Well, I suppose that’s what I do, yes.”

“And it works for you? Like, you end up in bed with guys?”

“Yes, but it’s not much of an emotional connection when it’s all via a translation process.”

“But you still have sex, right?”

“Well, yes.”

“That’s better than what I’m doing.”

“Yes, but isn’t sex really supposed to be about connectedness?”

“I don’t know. At this point I’ll settle for any type of sex I can get. I feel desperate, like tonight is my last opportunity.”

I nodded pensively.

“So, how would a typical girl go say good-night to this guy?”

“Well … okay, naturally I’d gush enthusiastically and show how interesting I think he is. But typical girls … like my roommates, wouldn’t find him all that interesting – somehow – and they’d just be somewhat nice to him. And they’d be confident, and hold back not as if reigning in their enthusiasm but just … because they don’t have any to reign in. Wow, that sounds so gray and lifeless.”

“Yes, it does. Now you can see why I like how I’m wired mentally, and you too since we seem to have a lot in common.”

“I mean, a typical-person life sounds so lukewarm, wow. How do they get motivated to do anything?”

“I don’t know. I don’t think like they do. I can at best guess. Somehow they make it through the day but they don’t seem to get much enjoyment out of things.”

“And there’s so much in life that’s exciting and wonderful and interesting!” she exclaimed, her eyes sparkling.

“That’s the sort of spirit I hope you never, ever lose,” I opined. “So, here you are at a cross-roads. You now know that you can go connect with typical people but you have to translate what you’d spontaneously do into how typical people would do it, instead. So now you have the potential to go socially connect with them, as long as you’re always on guard, and you think of whom you’re interacting with and what they expect and need. So if, until now, you’ve felt a chasm between you and the rest of mankind …”

“Wow, that describes it so well …”

“… then now you know how to build a bridge. Problem is, you’ll always be different – and it’s now a question of relative value.”

“How do you mean?”

“The key point here is that you can rejoice that you can finally be accepted by them, as in you’re finally worthy of fitting into their social structures … which means that the actual, spontaneous person you are is less, and must be continually gift-wrapped so as to be palatable …”

“Well, isn’t that how things are?”

“From their perspective, yes. But the key point is, not objectively. In reality, your enthusiasm and openness make you the better person.”

“Does it matter if I’m the only person who thinks so?”

“Well, you wouldn’t be the only person, because I think so too … but yes, it’s crucially important.”

“Why?”

“Because a lifetime of you considering yourself inferior to typical people … that’s bound to bring you down, psychologically, as time goes by.”

“But I already do feel inferior. Like, I have all these neurotic thoughts when I dream, and sleep …”

“So you already knew you were different, and you already consider the way you think to be negative?”

“Well, yes.”

“Explain to me how you think.”

She elaborated. I sympathized, and empathized, but then explained to her that her self-awareness and self-doubt were probably atypical but it made her a better person than someone who just stumbled along, not pausing to introspect or be concerned about whether he was on a good path or hurting others’ feelings.

“Wow, you just described CJ, the guy on whom I have a crush. He’s so oblivious to subtlety and niceness. Everything seems so simple to him. When he gets angry, he drinks or is mean, simple as that. And maybe he then ends up having sex with someone superficial and then whatever was bothering him is forgotten anyway … uncomplicated.”

I let her words hang in the air, and then I said: “Doesn’t that sound very two-dimensional, living like that?”

“Well … it sounds low-stress, that’s for sure.”

“Let’s analyze that. Does he feel in charge of where his life is going?”

She pondered that. “I can’t see how he could. But, he seems fine with it.”

“So if someone’s life is headed toward where a life of irresponsible behavior leads, then if that person ignores the possible consequences, do they then magically disappear? Like, if he doesn’t brush his teeth, is he exempt from tooth decay or will it eventually catch up with him?”

“I see your point. So he’s on borrowed time.”

“I think so, yes.”

“The thing is, most people seem to be like that. I’m the only one I know who overthinks things.”

“… by typical standards, but maybe you’re the only one who actually thinks about things enough.”

“I’m certainly the most responsible person around. Also, the most boring.”

“Not to me. I think you’re a delight.”

She looked at me as if in disagreement.

“Let me explain myself more. When you were getting dressed tonight, to go seduce this guy, did you feel intensely enthused and excited? And when you went to the hotel, and you met him, and you danced?”

“Oh, yes! I felt so exhilarated.”

“Now, imagine you end up seducing the guy.”

“Well, that’s not going to happen.”

“You don’t know that. As soon as you feel ready, I’m sending you over to his room.”

“Really?! Tonight? Like, soon?” she was endearingly eager.

“Yes,” I smiled. “But walking toward his door, knocking on the door, going in, seducing him, and having sex with him, that all would be very exciting for you, yes?”

“Oh, wow, yes!”

“Okay, so now imagine a typical girl experiencing the same thing. She’s not all that enthused about the guy. Yes, he’s a musician but who cares? He’s just one more guy. She’s going to have sex with someone so it might as well be him. Maybe it’ll at least feel good.”

“That sounds horribly lukewarm! He’s so interesting, and he deserves so much better!”

“Let’s say he does.”

“Well, he DOES.”

“Okay. So what if he feels the same? Let’s say he decides, what the heck, sure, why not, maybe sex with you will be fun, and he lets you in the door. How enthused about you do you think he’ll be, based on what you know of him so far?”

Her face fell.

“Do you think he’ll mirror your enthusiasm, or be more at the same plane as the typical-mindset girl I described?”

“The latter …”

“And that’s what you deserve?”

“Well … no. But it’s all I can get. Assuming I can even get that.”

“But don’t you deserve so much more, someone who mirrors your sense of joy and enthusiasm?”

“Well, maybe but I can’t be all that picky.”

“I think you can. But I probably won’t be able to convince you of that, soon. Anyway, we can talk about that later. For now, go seduce the guy, just have precise expectations that you’re probably the most joyous, enthused person in the room.“

“Now I’m not so enthused any more. I mean … let me think for a few seconds.” She did. “Okay, I still wanna go try. But I buy your point. Maybe I should try to enjoy it based on my own standards and expectations, and he should enjoy it to whatever extent his own situation allows. Like, if to him it’s OK sex but to me it’s mind-blowing, then – I experienced mind-blowing sex, and isn’t that important?”

“Yes. Well-reasoned.”

“I mean, I can’t control how he feels. I’d like to rock his world, but … maybe I’m bad in bed by his standards but I can still enjoy it.”

“Attagirl. Go get him.”

“Afterward I wanna come back and tell you about it. I feel so … connected with you.”

I smiled.

“And, I’m gonna leave my purse here, as part of my promise. Besides, after having sex with him, I’d probably forget it in his room. And it’d be one more thing to have to manage, so leaving it here seems prudent anyway.”

“I agree. What’s my room number?”

She said it back to me correctly. “But what if I forget?”

“I’ll leave a piece of paper partway under the door so you can find the room.”

“Oh, good idea! But what if it takes hours?”

“Then great! Enjoy. I’ll be here.”

“Really?!”

“Really,” I smiled. “Okay, let’s get you ready. For the record, you still look great. Now, some mouthwash …”

“Oh, do I have bad breath?”

“No, but minty-fresh is always good.”

“Wow, yes, okay.” She swished, and spat into the sink, enthused.

“Next, condoms.”

“Oh, wow. I’d forgotten about that. I thought he would somehow take care of it.”

“Better safe than sorry.”

“Wow! Yes, thank you.”

“Okay, go wash your hands thoroughly, then dry them, then put on these gloves.”

She looked puzzled, but went along. I put on gloves too, and retrieved two condoms from a sealed plastic bag. I handed them to her.

“Where do I put them?”

“Your bra or the waistband of your panties,” I smiled, and handed them over.

“Oh, I don’t think I’ll need two … I mean …”

“What if one tears while it’s being unwrapped?”

“Oh wow. Yes. Thank you.”

“Okay, so we don’t know what your hands might touch but it might be intimate, so keep the gloves on while you touch elevator buttons and so on. Once you’re near his room, discard the gloves. That way you have clean hands. Knocking on the door with your knuckle won’t make your hands filthy. “

“Okay.” She worked the condoms into position, one near each hip.

I opened the door. “Go have a wonderful time,” I said. She flashed me a lovely smile, and walked out.

There was so much additional advice I had wanted to give her, but I hadn’t wanted to overwhelm her. I stood there pensively, wishing her every success.

[Part 2 continues here]