inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #76 of 183: Bob 'rab' Bickford (rab) Wed 26 Sep 01 18:15
    

  I wonder the same thing when other males say that sort of thing.
Whatever they think they're seeing, it's not in the least bit obvious
to me.
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #77 of 183: Daniel del Solar (dsolar) Thu 27 Sep 01 01:51
    
maybe the "experts" know conventions, such as where the person is
seated and how they are seated...or particulars in the clothes?
I think each locality has its own conventions in this regard...

what is "hooker-ish" in Las Vegas is not in New York, East Side.

dont know; not an expert. but our expert will say?
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #78 of 183: Tracy Quan (tracyquan) Thu 27 Sep 01 08:34
    
Q: Is it possible that a hooker is only evident to her potential
market (or to other hookers?)  Is there a give-away, perhaps?

A: *Maybe* one of the women was using eye contact to pick him up-- a
somewhat businesslike thing for a lone female to do in a hotel bar.
However, if he is accompanied by a woman who looks like his date, it
seems highly unlikely that a pro would go there. You know, sometimes
women are mistaken for prostitutes, simply because they are
unaccompanied in a bar, a hotel lobby or on the street.

Q: He said it was because I'm not a man, but men can tell.  

A: Hm. That's a fairly suspect theory. Countless men have been in my
presence, completely unaware that I was a working girl, so right there
I would disagree with him. 
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #79 of 183: Tracy Quan (tracyquan) Thu 27 Sep 01 08:42
    
PS: Just found out there will be a Hebrew translation of "Diary"! 
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #80 of 183: Mike Godwin (mnemonic) Thu 27 Sep 01 09:18
    

Tracy, could you say a little more about the "Pretty Woman" myth of
the hooker who gets rescued by Prince Charming (and, I guess, who
"rescues him right back")?

You told me once that, even as many critics assailed the movie for
glamorizing prostitution, lots of sex workers unabashedly loved it --
which might seem to some folks to be counterintuitive, given that it's
not entirely a realistic flick.
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #81 of 183: Crystal Blues (sangfroid) Thu 27 Sep 01 10:13
    
It's so hard to find movies that realistically portray sex workers.

You've already mentioned Klute, what other movies do you think have a
genuine feel about them. "Save the Tiger" with Jack Lemmon always
impressed me for its scenes of total business between Lemmon and the
hooker. Or do you have to go to historical films like "Wicked, Wicked,
West" for non documentary reality?
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #82 of 183: Tracy Quan (tracyquan) Thu 27 Sep 01 10:24
    
In the Salon series, Nancy gets away with openly enjoying this movie
--Pretty Woman -- because it's been such a popular and romantic
flick...Her boyfriend sees it only as evidence of her romanticism. All
*kinds* of women loved it, including some of the most businesslike
hookers I know. 

There was great word of mouth among working girls -- "You'll love the
shopping scene." "It's the ultimate hooker fantasy." -- and none of the
call girls cared about the fact that Julia Roberts plays a
streetwalker. In fact, this just made the fantasy premise more
alluring. Prostitutes are in the business of satisfying other people's
fantasies, and if you're talking about the great majority of hookers, I
think we are just like other movie-goers. We'd rather see a love story
about a hooker than a documentary. Pretty Woman was emotionally
realistic. There were some very savvy details which made it easy for a
real working girl to identify with Julia Roberts' character. There are
moments where you realize that by falling for this guy, she has taken a
big emotional risk and yet she's very brave about confronting him with
her feelings. It would have been so much easier not to fall for him,
to treat him purely as a john. 

It was actually quite a moving experience to see this stuff writ so
large -- on the big screen, getting so much attention from pop
audiences. 

In fact, there is a split in the hookers movement over this movie.
Many activist hookers were pissed off about the obvious pandering to
Judeo-Christian morality -- the hooker HAS to regret her job in order
to be sympathetic, the john is saving her, etc. Others see past the
Disney moralism and regard that as a dramatic convention, rather than a
plot to suppress women's sexual freedom.  Put another way, there are
activists who isolate themselves intellectually from the apolitical sex
worker masses. And there are activists who see the non-politicized
prostitute as the most authentic. 

In "Diary," Allison is being pulled toward that PC direction by the
peer group pressure of the hookers' movement -- and yet has some very
conventional urges. 
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #83 of 183: Tracy Quan (tracyquan) Thu 27 Sep 01 10:44
    
Sangfroid states: It's so hard to find movies that realistically
portray sex workers... 

The whole question of what's realistic is sort of up for grabs. Klute,
for example, is a period piece and, having seen it just recently, I
was amazed at how dated it now seems. Klute is the Easy Rider of hooker
movies. Often, when you try to be cutting edge and "realistic" you end
up with something that looks a bit contrived. 

I haven't seen Save The Tiger or Wicked, Wicked West, but I think I
will go see if I can rent them. Very interested in both.

Belle de Jour is, I think, one of the smartest movies ever made about
a hooker, and another one I love is La Balance. Unfortunately, La
Balance is dubbed -- I liked it more when I saw it with subtitles. It's
a detective movie, like Klute, which deals with tensions between law
enforcers, hookers and their boyfriends. I haven't seen it in awhile so
perhaps it's also kind of dated. If anyone here gets a chance to watch
it, would love to know your thoughts. 
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #84 of 183: Mike Godwin (mnemonic) Thu 27 Sep 01 12:24
    

Tracy, did you like "Dangerous Beauty," the movie based on "Honest
Courtesan" Veronica Franco of 16th-century Venice?

And is there a call-girl/mistress/courtesan overlap in the modern world?
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #85 of 183: Tracy Quan (tracyquan) Thu 27 Sep 01 14:06
    
"Dangerous Beauty" is fun but slightly bizarre -- the way it seems to
go from 16th c. Venice to a pro-sex feminist human rights rally at the
very end... but that's what movies are all about sometimes, mixing up
the sensibilities. 

Sure there is overlap, but I think call girls are very modern
creatures -- for one thing, the very terminology seems to come from the
technology that makes it possible for us to have privacy and secrecy.
Daughters of joy have become the daughters of telephony. 
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #86 of 183: Tracy Quan (tracyquan) Thu 27 Sep 01 14:26
    
And some people think the daughters of telephony will be replaced by
daughters of the net. More later, I am going to an interview w/ a
reporter who is meeting me for drinks at the Mark (Nancy's Chan's
haunt.)
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #87 of 183: Jef Poskanzer (jef) Thu 27 Sep 01 14:34
    
When you get back, I want to hear more about the various interviews
and appearances you've been doing!
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #88 of 183: Crystal Blues (sangfroid) Thu 27 Sep 01 15:51
    
"Belle de Jour" just has to be one of the most erotic films ever made.


"Wicked, Wicked, West" is an overlooked movie IMO. 

Thanks for mentioning "Dangerous Beauty Mike", I knew Tracy was
reminding me someone:)(Hopefully without the plauge and inquisition)

>Sure there is overlap, but I think call girls are very modern
creatures....

Courtesans, Geisha's, Call Girls, and now a new top of the line woman
with something more? Can you forsee a future with Super Courtesans
would be as famous as todays super models? Since sexuality has so much
to do with the mind perhaps the trend would be away from skeletons in
skirts to bright and witty.  
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #89 of 183: Tracy Quan (tracyquan) Thu 27 Sep 01 20:27
    
Hi Jef, I am back from my interview with Penthouse, during which
I violated my Atkins diet and had some beef dumplings and a souffle.
The grand marnier souffle at the Mark is very good, I recommend it. 
But skip the dumplings, they are not really worth the carbs. It feels
strange wearing boots again -- the summer is over. 

I am currently gearing up for some more tv interviews -- so far my
favorite TV shows have been O'Reilly Factor and Court TV. 
After the Court TV appearance, I also did a live chat (now up on the 
Court Website as a transcript:

http://www.courttv.com/talk/chat_transcripts/2001/0907quan.html

O'Reilly is a strange character but he really moves books! 

In addition to the Hebrew translation, there's a French translation in
the works... 
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #90 of 183: Tracy Quan (tracyquan) Thu 27 Sep 01 20:54
    
Q: Super Courtesans would be as famous as today's super models? 

A: That, I think, was the mood in Paris 100+ years ago and in other
cities where courtesans were prominent. There is a new book out which
makes a point of valorizing courtesans from a feminist perspective.
"The Book of the Courtesans: A Catalogue of Their Virtues" by Susan
Griffin. I'm curious about the assertion that courtesans were neither
prostitutes nor kept women. Not prostitutes, I can see that. But I
think she may be stretching her argument when she says they were not
being kept. In any case, many of the courtesans she writes about were,
indeed, local superstars, celebs, with artistic careers --singers,
actresses, dancers. 

I have found that some feminists like to valorize defunct forms --
like temple prostitution from a zillion years ago or courtesan life 400
years ago -- a sort of "good old days" approach. But I think the call
girl of today is probably better off, in most cases, and freer to live
her own life than a temple prostitute or even a 16th century courtesan.
A call girl today doesn't have the same kind of social impact as a big
league courtesan did but she has more men or patrons to choose from.
It must have incredibly competitive and bitchy in those days! 
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #91 of 183: Tracy Quan (tracyquan) Thu 27 Sep 01 21:17
    
Sorry about the typo. "It must have BEEN incredibly competitive..."
with so few viable sugardaddies. Successful courtesans were a wily
breed.

Unlike Nancy, who likes to fantasize about the Belle Epoque, I don't
even contemplate that kind of nostalgia -- I wouldn't trade in the
convenience of modern life for the ways of the past... 
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #92 of 183: Kelly (kellyhills) Fri 28 Sep 01 14:47
    
*waves cheerfully* Hullo Tracy... been following along for a bit, and
decided to delurk and say I loved the Salon series, as did all of my
friends (one of whom found it _very_ useful as she moved into being a
private escort).

Anyhow, hullo Linda. ;-) You asked:
>>I went to Las Vegas several years ago on business, and one evening I
was in the bar of our hotel with my then-boss.  He claimed that there
were several hookers in there. <<

I lived in Nevada for a while, and while both my husband and I could
spot the streetwalking prostitutes with ease, we could never sit down
in a casino and spot anyone that shouted it to us. What we did notice
while we people-watched was how comfortable people were with their
bodies, their partners, and everyone they interacted with - and we
found a bunch of other stereotypes. But not the "spot a hooker a mile
away" one...

Other offhandness about living in Nevada. While I was in school, I was
a human sexuality major; one of my classes had three girls from the
Mustang Ranch, all of whom were riots. It was a great class (basic
human sexuality) to be in.

-Kelly
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #93 of 183: Linda Castellani (castle) Fri 28 Sep 01 16:10
    

Hullo Kelly.  Nice to see you over here!

Very, very interesting stories.  
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #94 of 183: Tracy Quan (tracyquan) Sat 29 Sep 01 08:52
    
Kelly, thank you! I didn't write the series with the intention of
creating a user's guide -- I almost hope the novel will discourage some
people from entering an overly populated sellers market :) But I can't
help being flattered when a reader tells me there are real-life
applications. 

I have never been to Nevada and the culture of the sex industry there
seems wide open to the point of exotic. It is amazing to me how
regionalized this country is and sometimes it's the sex trade itself
that makes you realize it... 
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #95 of 183: Mike Godwin (mnemonic) Sat 29 Sep 01 19:06
    

Tracy, is it true that strippers and call girls tend to look down on each
other? I've heard, for example, that strippers tend to look down on call
girls because call girls actually have sex with their clients, and that call
girls look down on strippers because, well, they don't.
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #96 of 183: Linda Castellani (castle) Sun 30 Sep 01 00:33
    

They don't?
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #97 of 183: Tracy Quan (tracyquan) Sun 30 Sep 01 09:10
    
I don't think there are universals here. I think, if call girls "look
down" on strippers it's because strippers cannot keep their work a
secret -- it has nothing to do with whether strippers have sex. I
suspect that strippers who look down on hookers do so because they
(strippers) are in the business of teasing, not having sex. Or because
they may feel defensive about being strippers. 

I did read some stuff about one of the sex worker conferences in the
'80s (A Vindication of the Rights of Whores) -- in which a stripper got
up and said, "There's a hierarchy in the sex industry with dancers at
the top and prostitutes at the bottom." This must have caused a ripple
of laughter at the conference. 

It reminds me of a passage in A House for Biswas -- two Indian
families are at a wedding in Trinidad, now in-laws. And, as Naipaul put
it (I'm paraphrasing) -- the two families are being condescending to
one another  but neither family has a clue it's being condescended to
... Because one family is supposedly higher caste but the other family
has money. Each family lives in its own world, fairly unaware of the
value systems of the other. 

I think something like that may be going on with dancers and hookers.
They certainly tend to have different politics. In the novel, there's a
character some might recognize as a composite of the union organizers
in the peep show world. I have never heard of prostitutes in the US
trying to organize into a formal trade union like that. I am not saying
it couldn't happen, but for some reason, peep show dancers did it
first.
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #98 of 183: Mike Godwin (mnemonic) Sun 30 Sep 01 19:39
    

Linda, to judge from what I've been reading and viewing -- Lily Burana's
STRIP CITY and the film "Live Nude Girls Unite," most recently -- it
is not the norm for strippers, dancers, and peepshow girls to have
sex with clients. (Indeed, in most venues it's probably impossible.)

No doubt some subset of these sex workers have relationships with clients
now and then, but I don't think that's the norm.
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #99 of 183: Tracy Quan (tracyquan) Sun 30 Sep 01 20:25
    
When I saw Live Nude GIrls Unite, the documentary about peepshow
dancers, I was struck by the perspective of the girls. The film was
shot from inside or backstage and I got this sense that men were
incredibly marginal or slightly unreal! You would see these faces
appearing in the window and -- quite honestly -- I was shocked at the
extent to which the *men* were total objects. Not morally shocked or
anything -- different workplace, different attitude. But just amazed at
how like a different planet this peep show world seemed -- in
comparison to the brothels where I did (some of) my apprenticeship.
  
inkwell.vue.123 : Tracy Quan: Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl
permalink #100 of 183: Daniel O'Donnell (dano) Sun 30 Sep 01 21:03
    
There's a considerable amount of sex in the stripping world, both  for
hire and for free. And strippers see the men as objects similar to
what TQ describes peep show dancers doing. In fact strippers frequently
call the men ATMs - as in the ATM at your local financial institution.
  

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