Sunday, 27 October 2013

Same Old Songs

"There may be trouble ahead..."  One of my favourite songs, from the sublime voice of Nat 'King' Cole.  And very apt for this week.  Why? well, another week, and another load of bollocks in the media regarding prostitution.  First of all, I am old enough to remember those dark days of AIDS and the surrounding fears that swept the country, and indeed the world, in the late 1980's.  Remember those stark images of gravestones, imploring the importance of safe-sex if you wanted to not just keep your health, but your life too?  Only in the backward and ignorant parts of the world is this message still not understood.  Oh, wait.  It appears that maybe in our so-called 'enlightened' western world we are still struggling with this message, too - or at least Sir Stephen House is.  Don't know who he is?  Me neither, until this week, when, as Chief Constable of Police Scotland he was responsible for the decision to remove any "items of a sexual nature" from the brothels and massage parlours of Edinburgh - which, astonishingly, will include condoms.

This flies in the face of all common-sense, and is a very worrying path to be taking.  Potentially it will endanger girls and their customers more than ever.  The choice may well come down to either having a relatively safe environment where you cannot practise safe-sex, or taking the choice to continue to have safe-sex out onto the streets.  What a wonderfully liberated and progressive society we live in.

With Scotland's referendum for independence coming up, and the SNP constantly talking about a 'fairer society', it seems clear that this 'fairer society' won't include everyone.  Meet the new boss, same as the old boss, as The Who sang many years ago.  And another great song.

Secondly, from the ridiculous to the, er, ridiculous.  Yes, that paragon, that giant of investigative journalism that is, er, Jodie Marsh has hit the media again.  This is the girl who rose to 'TV Stardom' in Essex Wives a decade ago, who has featured in numerous 'Lad's Mags', Celebrity Big Brother, etc, etc ad nauseam.  She has recently filmed a 'documentary' (and I use that term uneasily - documentaries are, in my mind, by distinguished and knowledgeable people like Sir David Attenborough) about prostitution, and some of her findings were truly shocking.  She visited Amsterdam and Manchester on her travels, hoping to get a glimpse of the life of a 'working girl'.  I especially liked her opinion that "Mostly the thing they had in common was they’d all been forced into it by a man. And their lives were s***."  Oh, and how being around the sex business has totally put her off sex, even when she's been celibate for over two years.  She also came to the conclusion, as we always hear, that the vast majority (70% - in her words) were trafficked.

She sat in a 'window' in Amsterdam's red-light district, to get a first hand understanding of what it's like to be a sex worker.  On this experience, she made her conclusions and hated it - having men to gape at her like she was "a piece of meat" (from someone who made her fame by removing her clothes and working as a lap dancer - very bizarre).  Fine, she can't do the job, it's not for her.  And she has no understanding of how someone could do it - so therefore it's all disgusting and even the lowest of the low should not be subjected to it.  However, I feel the same everytime I have to ring the electric company and get that depressed and suicidal call-centre operative on the line who has already spoken to fifty complaining customers that day, or go to the supermarket and see the person on the cash-till looking despairingly at the line of twenty impatient customers lining up.  I couldn't do those jobs, but am grateful someone can.

Sorry to burst her bubble, but I think she really needs to work a bit harder and try a different view of the sex trade.  First of all, no self-respecting sex worker would let her and her 'investigative team' within a mile of their day-to-day lives and business.  The girls she doesn't see or know about are the ones like me, that are not trafficked, are not controlled by a pimp, choose their customers and when they see them, and, importantly, control their own lives.  I would never, ever, dream of letting her and her 'media team' into my life in any way, allow her to present it to the world in any way she wanted, and ruin my reputation and business without any comeback on herself - apart from allowing her more media attention and a paycheck.  So, what she has is a tiny glimpse, and a misleading one at that, into a business she has no understanding of at all - and has then been paid to produce a load of shit on her 'experience'.  So, bollocks, in other words.

Oh, and for the record, she also states that her work as a lap dancer wasn't part of the sex business (yeah, yeah...), and that 70% (hmmm... she seems to like that figure, doesn't she...?) of lap dancers are lesbians.  Sorry, but this is bullshit of the truly highest order.  I worked as a lap dancer for a fair few years, and I don't recall meeting even one that was even bisexual.  In fact, I'd say the majority of them back when I was a lap dancer would run a mile at the mention of bisexuality/lesbianism and anything different, ie. fetishism.

"Maybe I'll find on the way down the line, That I'm free, free to be me."  And another great song - Black Night by Deep Purple.  Free to be me?  Not when the likes of Jodie Marsh and Stephen House are around, it seems.

Anyway - onto better things.  This week I went along to the Manchester235 casino for the city's Vintage Awards night.  Great fun, and I didn't realise just how many people in the retro scene I know - so it was an evening with friends, really.  It was also a night of cocktails, but even on a two-for-the-price-for-one deal, I didn't even get tipsy - despite having six of them.

Dexi - Independent Escort
Must try harder next time.  As well as watching all the vintage entertainers, entrepreneurs and businesses receive their awards, we were also treated to some burlesque acts too - including Ginger La Rouge, whose 'champagne glass' finale was definitely worth watching.

Dexi - Independent Escort
 Finally, onto this week's Picture Of The Week.  Titled, rather appropriately, 'Black Night', it was taken on the way to a friend's Hallowe'en Party.  Yes, it's a see-through dress, which I wore with no underwear.  It's a good job I have understanding and very pervy friends...

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