A 34-year-old research scientist at the Bristol Initiative for Child Health recently announced that she is the (formally) anonymous blogger known as Belle de Jour –Diary of a London Call Girl.
To me the most interesting part of the revelation is the following:
Dr Magnanti, who studied anthropology and maths in Florida, was completing a PhD at Sheffield University’s department of forensic pathology when she became a call girl.
Realizing she had no objection to having sex for money, she contacted an agency and worked as a prostitute from 2003 to late 2004, which she said was ‘so much more enjoyable’ than her shifts in another job as a computer programmer.
This reminds me of another woman I met at a party about four years ago. Let’s call her ‘N’. She was middle aged but very physically fit. After only a sentence or two you knew she was smart and not just an empty head on a pretty body. Talking about what kind of work we did it came out that she had been an engineer for many years, traveled all over the world for her job and finally got tired of it and quit. After a few months she started thinking about what kind of job she wanted to have. She was pretty sure she wanted a career change but wasn’t sure what she would like to do and have the time and interest to go to school to get the required training. She was sitting in the park with a female friend of hers who finally asked, “If you could do anything you wanted for a living what would it be?” N answered, “I would like to get paid to f**k.” And her friend answered, “So darling, why don’t you? How do you think I worked my way through medical school?”
And so it came to be that N started her new and very profitable career without any formal training. She told me she had been doing it (pun intended) for a few years and was making more money than she ever imagined. She mostly lived alone although she had a steady lover that she spend most of her non-work nights with. She had a home in Bellevue Washington (generally an expensive part of the Seattle area) and was in the process of putting on a 10,000 square foot addition to the house. Part of it was her new “playroom”.
She said she was 40 years old but she let slip the age of her parents and I didn’t think anything of it until I saw the alarm in her eyes as she quickly added, “They became parents when they were much older than most.” I did the math and didn’t say anything but I then noticed the wrinkles in the hands and a few other places. I suspect her true age was really in the early fifties.
Out of curiosity, knowing full well that Barb wouldn’t approve a budget item like that, I asked what sort of rates she charged. IIRC it was $400 for 90 minutes, $800 for four hours, or $1400 for the entire night. Weekend trips to exotic and interesting places would have discounts. She guaranteed she could be taken to company Christmas parties and the like and never embarrass you. Among other things she frequently did international travel with her clients as they traveled on business without their wives. She was very picky about her clients and never had more than about five or six at a time.
She painted a quite favorable picture of her new career and when I expressed my envy she told me she had a male friend trying to get into the business but most of the women were significantly overweight and wanted some sort of elaborate fantasy date that consumed nearly all of what they were willing to pay. Hence although he technically was paid to have sex he didn’t make any money on it.
Another woman I know, let’s call her “T’, did some similar work for a while but had a different result. She was about 30 years old, very pretty, behind on her rent, and food was starting to become an issue. So she started putting on “girl-girl” shows for an old retired mobster with a lot of money. He apparently only had the capacity to watch rather than participate “in the action”. T got something like $600 for an hour which she had to split with the “playmate” who was a friend of hers. Occasionally some guy would participate in the show with some simulated sex and would get paid some token amount.
T was quickly able to pay her back rent and put some food on the cupboards and decided to expand her clientèle. This ended up not being such a good idea.
She told a few married or attached men friends who had made passes at her that she was available for a price with confidentiality guaranteed. Some of them took her up on the deal and something unexpected happened. Once these men friends had paid for her services they treated her much different than they had before. They treated her like crap. The did not value her smarts and friendship anymore. It was about as friendly a transaction as one would have with a candy machine. After a few months she packed up her stuff and left the state.
I told N the story of T and asked if she had anything like that happen and she said no. Her clients were all gentlemen all the time. Perhaps it was because they knew she wouldn’t stand for it. It was a sellers market for her product and it wasn’t a problem to “fire a customer” and find a new one.
Life just isn’t fair. Not only would I never be able to find high paying customers I’d be willing to service but Barb would be certain to find some reason why it wasn’t a good idea no matter how much I enjoyed my new job.