Thursday, December 31, 2009

New Stranger Column
There's usually a seven-day lag time in between me turning columns into the Stranger and them hitting the street. (Either the actual street or the digital one.) There was an even longer one than usual this time, because the Stranger staffers wanted to get the annual "We Regret These Errors" issue all put to bed before Christmas so they could take off for the holiday. That means I wrote this particular column about three weeks ago, and that's just long enough for me to have sort of forgotten what exactly I said.

Goodness. I think I was in a mood when I wrote it. Look, I'm a nice person, really. I'm a little like Jessica Rabbit: I'm not bitchy, I just - write that way.

Anyway, have some champagne. Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

A post inspired by a brief conversation with a friend: why you should not write client data down.

I have known sex workers who kept records. Nice, tidy, accurate records of who they saw every day, a few words about the personality and hobbies of the guy, to facilitate small talk, and then some notes about what he liked sexually, and if/how much he tipped. It often looks something like this:

12/ 01/09 John Smith: nice guy, heavyset, likes football. Lots of oral, reverse cowgirl, likes his nipples played with, tends to be noisy so make sure windows are closed. Usually tips $50. Phone xxx-xxxx, email

This is a terrible, terrible idea. Do not do this, ever. Why? Let me count the ways this can go wrong.

Bad scenario number one: a nice person gets a hold of your little book of records*. Your roommate’s lover, the plumber, the landlord, your mother. Do you really want them to see a record of all the people you’ve had sex with for money, and what you’ve done with them? That’s going to lead to some very awkward conversations, at best.

Bad scenario number two: a bad person gets a hold of your records. (See: your roommate’s lover, the plumber, the landlord. Hopefully not your mother.) Hmm, I have no scruples and I’m holding a bunch of information rich in blackmail potential. Or at the very least: embarrassing, privacy-violating scandal. Remember the Jason Fortuny flap on Craigslist? That sort of thing.

Bad scenario number three: you get arrested and law enforcement finds your records. I’m not a lawyer, and this is not legal advice. But my layperson’s opinion is: that’s a bad thing to happen. That seems like fairly damning evidence against you. Plus, you’ve potentially incriminated all your clients.

Bad scenario number four: you get arrested, law enforcement finds your records, your smart attorney succeeds in getting it ruled inadmissible to your case, but – the police turn it over to the IRS. And the IRS says, “According to these records, you made fifty thousand dollars last year. But you only reported thirty thousand dollars. We’re going after you for tax evasion.” This precise series of events happened to a woman that I once knew. The result wasn’t pretty. This is why in addition to not keeping records about my clients, I pay those taxes. Oh Lordy, yes I do.

I have seen people keep notes they thought were very cryptic.

12/ 01/09 John S. Nice. Football. Lots O. Rev C. Shut windows! One star.

That might help you in the first two situations, although you still have to come up with some reasonable explanation for your mother as to what the records are. If you don’t keep contact info, I suppose the blackmail/scandal possibility is contained. But it is my impression that those records might still be used against you legally. If you know what you’re looking for, most “codes” are not particularly hard to figure out.

Of course, you could write something like this:

12/ 01/09 John Smith. Dogs barking, can't fly without umbrella. Mary had a little lamb. All your base are belong to us.

And then in three months, when John Smith calls you for another date, you’re going to look back at that and think, “What the hell does that mean?”

Yes, it would be nice if one could check one’s notes and see that John Smith loves the Green Bay Packers, always tends to run about ten minutes late, and likes a finger in his ass. But this is one of those little challenges to life as a sexual outlaw. If this stuff was easy, everyone would do it. You’re going to have to train your memory instead.

*Or whatever electronic equivalent of a Little Black Book you're using. And do not talk about password-protected to me. That will help avoid innocent accidents, but a clever and determined sixth-grader can get around many passwords.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Las Vegas Kinky People!

My dear Monk is coming to your town very soon - go see him in action. The class is called “Sensual Rope Bondage for the Not-So-Vanilla” - so if that describes you, you'll like this event.

Where: Erotic Heritage Museum, 3275 Industrial Road, Las Vegas, NV
When: Thursday January 7th Class 7:00-9:00pm. Private Q&A session 9:00-9:30pm
Cost: $50 per person

It's part of a larger spectrum of kinky events that weekend, he has more details about it here on his blog.

Monk is as much a performer as he is a teacher - you can see a recent video of of him here at the Columbia City Cabaret. He's great fun to watch in action, and it's even better when he talks, too.

I hope the Sin City folks make him feel very welcome!