Saturday, May 10, 2008
Thursday, May 08, 2008
So I got handled by a lot of strange women yesterday. And I spent a lot of money for the privilege, too.
Let me back up a bit. I have had hardly anyone booked to see me this week. Usually when it’s slow I try to shake the tree a little, entice some more people into my clutches. But this week I just decided to say the heck with it and let it be slow. I have been taking care of a lot of little personal chores, and I decided to book a bunch of time-consuming girlie-maintenance stuff. I have a facial today at the Calidora Spa in U Village, for example. I like the facials I get at my dermatologist's office, but you have to book so far in advance there, and of course they have no evenings or weekends, so I thought I’d go see if Calidora was any good. Wish me luck that they don't do something terrible to my face.
But yesterday I got a manicure and pedicure at this little salon near The Big House, called Hoa. I’ve been getting my nails done there for a few months now, and they’re very nice.
They were particularly nice yesterday. I am a heavy tipper, especially with spa-type service stuff. If you’ve ever hustled for tips as a major chunk of your income, then you know how really happy it makes you when someone is generous, so I am. I think word has gotten around about that at Hoa. They always massage your legs up to the knee when they give you the pedicure, and they usually massage your arms up the elbow. But I got what seemed like an extra-long foot and leg massage, and the girl doing my hands was rubbing up my arms, to my shoulders, and then my neck. It was extremely blissful.
I said as much to the girl massaging my shoulders. Many of the ladies there do not seem to speak a whole lot of English, although it’s sometimes a little hard to tell. But she understood my smile and my sigh, and she smiled back at me and rubbed more firmly. Seeing us, the girl doing my feet smiled too. I mentally added another five dollars to both their tips.
So I’m sitting there is this big black massage-chair with the rollers going up and down my back, with one girl massaging my feet and legs and another lady massaging my arms and shoulders, thinking, “This is like sex.” And then I thought, “Actually, this is like being the client of a sex worker. And I am totally fine with that.”
An hour later I emerged from Hoa, fingers and toes gleaming, and went to Nordstrom to just quickly return a bra I’d bought online that didn’t fit. Or so I thought.
I gave the bra and receipt to the salesgirl. She said, “Did you want to get something else?”
I replied, “Well, I’m looking for a bra with a really smooth line for under tight knits. Do you have any suggestions?”
“Have you been fitted here before?”
I admitted I had not.
Well, that would never do. Ignoring my unfinished protests, the salesgirl conducted me to the dressing rooms, led me into a little cubicle and closed the door, brandishing her tape measure. “Let’s just have you take off your shirt.”
Meekly I obeyed. She turned me around and lassoed me with the tape. “First we’ll just get your rib cage measurement.” I could feel her breath on my hair.
“Okay,” she said briskly. “I’ll be right back with the Measuring Bra.” I wondered if the Measuring Bra was like The Sorting Hat. Was it going to sing a song about my boobs?
She returned with a beige lacy bra that looked like something my grandmother would have worn, with big high cups. I must have looked dubious, because she said, “Oh, it’s just the Measuring Bra. We’ll find you some different ones. But let’s just take you out of that bra and put you in this one.”
I thought, I just laid eyes on this girl ten minutes ago and she’s telling me to take off my clothes. And I’m doing it. Is this how people feel when they come see me?
I took off my bra. The salesgirl - or Mistress Underwire, as I was beginning to think of her - eyed my breasts and held out the Measuring Bra to me. I have never had anyone hold out a bra for me to slide my arms into, it was sort of strange. I had to step up fairly close to her to get all the way in. Hi there. Nice perfume. Then she turned me around and hooked me up in back.
“Now I want you to just bend over at the waist.”
Okay…. I’d heard about this, actually, bra fitters telling you to bend over. So I did. It was a small room, not much bigger than a closet, and my ass bumped into her hips slightly. In the mirror, I had a glimpse of her standing up close behind me, adjusting the straps, as I leaned forward. I have a mirror hung next to my spanking bench in my dungeon, and I see myself in that position with people a lot – only I’m the one standing up straight. But not, until now, had I ever seen anyone posed like that in a Nordie’s dressing room.
She had me stand up and turn around. The Goddess Of Uplift studied my breasts thoughtfully, tugged at the sides of the bra slightly, and then said, “Let me just…” And stuck her hand into the cup and repositioned my boob. Then she put her fingers under the cups of the bra and shook my breast gently. And then she did the same with the other one.
Now, I wasn’t upset by this, you understand. I was quite clear it was all in the line of duty. But – you have to admit it’s a bit funny. Maybe it’s just me, but I couldn’t help thinking, Um, yeah, you’re playing with my breasts, there. Just sayin’.
I think it would have been different if I’d come in expecting that. But since I didn’t, I was a bit bemused by having a strange woman dressing me up in lingerie and arranging my boobs - which she referred to as "breast tissue" - to her satisfaction.
Of course, I'd been wearing the wrong size bra. I think you always are when you go to a bra fitter. I thought of myself as hovering between a big B cup and a small C. But according this lady - no, that was wrong, I should wear a D. Which is hard for me to fathom, but okay, bring them on, I'll try them.
So the Demi-Cup Domina went away and came back with an armful of bras, and matching panties for everything, plus some yummy blue lace lingerie, since I’d mentioned that to her. And she tugged and shook and got me properly strapped into everything. She was a positive whirl of Nordstrom-ly helpfulness, in a sort of just-do-as-I-say-and-no-one-gets-hurt sort of way.
I’m kidding, really. She was fine and she found me a lot of stuff I needed. Obviously one doesn’t tip salespeople, but I hope she gets a nice commission off me.
She’d probably make a really good dominatrix, though, if she ever wanted to go that way.
Wednesday, May 07, 2008
Tuesday, May 06, 2008
So, a few weeks ago I was shopping at QFC on Broadway and I had a curious experience…
I had been working out at the Gold’s upstairs, and while I do shower and change afterwards, it was my opinion that I still looked a bit... like I’d just been to the gym. But no matter, right? I’m just picking up a few things at the store.
I was standing in the produce department, studying the cut pineapple and wondering whether I’d rather have
The presence shifted with me. O-kay…
A voice behind me spoke. “Would you like to go out with me?”
Now, like everyone else, I have gotten used to fact that people now have all manner of conversations on their phones in public places, and now that half of them have earpieces, you can sometimes hardly tell that they’re actually on a phone unless you look closely. It’s occasionally confusing, trying to tell the Bluetooth users from the crazy people muttering to themselves, but one tries. So for a moment I assumed that I was overhearing someone’s phone conversation. Then I looked around.
There was a man standing close behind me, staring at me with an intense, unsmiling expression. He was…sort of average looking. I mean, he was neither very tall nor very short, neither fat nor thin, and neither notably handsome nor strikingly ugly. He was maybe in his thirties, although he might have been a haggard twenty-something or a young forty. He was dressed in what I think of as standard Capitol Hill drag: loose-fitting pants, baggy t-shirt, and a hoody, accessorized with earphones trailing from his ears, down his neck and snaking away to an unseen device in some pocket.
(As an aside, I dislike it with people with earphones actually in their ears talk to me. If you have the damn things in your ears, I assume that sound is coming out of them and that you can’t hear me. I think you should take them out when you interact with people.)
He was a little scruffy-looking, and my mind danced momentarily with the idea that this was a street person employing some flirtatious brand of panhandling. There was something about the fixed stare…. But at second glance – no, probably not. Just a trifle unkept, probably on purpose.
Okay, did this guy seriously just walk up to my back and ask me if I wanted to go out? No way.
And then I thought: Oh, wait – I get it! This guy is a reader, he’s recognized me, and he’s kidding me. This was mere days after I’d posted about the What Not To Say affair, so I could see why he’d think it would be funny to tease me. And I go to this grocery store all the time, people have done the “hey-aren’t-you?” thing to me there before. (Which is fine.)
So I raised an eyebrow at him and smiled slightly, saying nothing and waiting for him to break into a smile and acknowledge the joke.
He didn’t. He just stared at me. No smile.
After a few seconds, my assurance that he was joking faltered. I think I said something like, “You’re kidding me, right?”
He replied, “You’re very beautiful.”
Ah. Okay. This is for real. I took a step back. “No. No thank you.” And then I walked away and hid in another part of the store for a little while until I could go back and get my fruit. And mused on exactly what this man had done wrong, and what he had done right.
He did, at least, have the grace to not follow me when I walked away. And while a guy giving me a fixed-unsmiling-stare always makes me think less of brooding indie-rock types and more of serial killers, I wasn’t scared by him. (Although I was mildly annoyed about feeling compelled to linger in the frozen foods, when that wasn’t what I was shopping for.) So that part was not terrible.
And I have to admit, it always catches me wrong-footed when I think I look not-my-best and some guy hits on me. I suppose when I’m all dressed up, I expect to attract a bit more attention. But if I’m just running errands in jeans and t-shirt, I walk around absorbed in my own thoughts, assuming I’m invisible. However, I am assured that I am not. Huh.
But still and all - that was one of the most doomed-to-failure-pickup attempts I have ever been subject to. I mean, I have said before that asking to be granted erotic access to a woman’s body before she’s decided that she’s attracted to you is poor strategy. Let me just expand on that idea and say that you should make a woman aware of your existence as a unique human being before you actually ask her out. Is that really such a radical idea?
I was telling Monk this story and he shook his head. “You’re in the produce department and the guy couldn’t come up with an opening line? Oh man, that’s too easy. Hey, do these tomatoes look ripe to you? Or Wow, weren’t the bananas thirty cents cheaper last week? That’s how you start out.”
Yeah, I mean - say something. Clue me in to what's going on, before you start asking pointed questions. Not that I’d have accepted a date with this man no matter how smoothly he’d engaged me over the strawberries. But I would have at least smiled and declined a bit more sweetly.