Saturday, May 19, 2007

Practical Whoring (Part One)

A Gentle Reader, Anonymous Girl on the Verge, writes:

[nice compliments] May I ask you about something you touched on only briefly in a very early post?

At what point in your initial contacts with prospective clients do you first send them photos of yourself? How identifying are the pics you send? Is your face clearly visible? Is anything less than that acceptable to clients? How nekkid are the pics? What are your concerns about being recognized, and about losing control over your pics, for ex by someone posting them elsewhere, whether or not they're accompanied by other identifying details?

This is the easy part:

You send photos when you damn well want, of what you damn well please.

Some ladies post identifying pictures to their websites or on client/provider bulletin boards. Some put them on Craigslist, faces and all. Some have only a physical description and send photos via email. Some may never send photos and get the clients to take them on faith, based on a coffee meeting, or by turning up at a Meet&Greet event thrown by a local bulletin board. (I could have booked ten appointments from the M&G I went to without sending any pics at all, *and* I got to weed out guys I thought were creepy or icky without having to do ten coffee dates). I’ve looked at a lot of boards and a lot of websites, and the most common tactic is to post a decent body shot with your face hidden, cropped out, blurred, or wearing big sunglasses. I’ve also seen ladies who post absolutely non-sexual shots of themselves in normal street clothes, showing their face, and those who publish thumbnails of different parts.

I personally do not send face pictures to clients at all, though this may change now that I am seeing very few (right now, one) people whose real names and real jobs I know. The face picture I sent to Be-My-Real-Friend when it became clear after about fifteen emails that he was serious and legit was fully clothed and non-sexual. If you have a social networking page, send a photo from that (renamed) and then your line is, “Officer, I have no idea what you’re talking about – is some creepy stalker downloading my Myspace pictures?”

If you *want* to send pictures to a client, be aware that anyone who can’t make a decision to see you or not based on *one* photo that shows your general body shape and condition and *one* photo that highlights your best feature, is using your pictures to wank. Do not send them more until they pay and you want to use a photo as a thank-you or a lure for more business.

A sample interaction on a local board:

Desperate Guy With No Money: hi goddess how r u? pics?
Mandy: Hi there, nice to hear from you! I only respond to pm’s written in complete sentences – thanks!
DGWN$: Oh, i understand. I think u are hot! Can i see some pics?
Mandy: If you’re interested in booking an appointment, let me tell you a little about myself… [2 paragraphs with big words, it’s a cut-and-paste] …If I sound like your kind of lady, will you tell me about yourself and where you’re located?

DGWN$ responds, I tell him he’s too far away to be my client, he says he understands and continues to send me requests for pictures about once a week. Delete!

For serious clients who introduce themselves, have references and write grammatically, I send one photo of my body in a form-fitting dress and one of my chest in a bra. I don’t send any nekkid pics (“nekkid” – Naked and Up To Something, thank you Lewis Grizzard) to men I know in a professional capacity. I don’t wear the clothes or underwear in my working girl pics in non-professional contexts. And if someone ever says, “Hey, isn’t that…” I’ll say, “Damn! That does look like me! I wonder how much she gets?” My pictures aren’t porn-ish enough (I think) for anyone to bother posting them all over the net, and I send them out at low res – enough so that they aren’t even clear if viewed except as an email attachment.

One thing that sticks out, though, in Anonymous Girl's phrasing:

Is anything less than that acceptable to clients?

It’s not what’s acceptable to them that counts, it’s what’s acceptable to *you*. You You You YOU YOU. If whoring is an option for you, it’s very, very important to draw your own lines and set your own boundaries, and it starts at first contact. If you’re shy about saying:

“Sorry, I don’t send additional pictures until you book”
“No, I don’t give out ‘pink’ pics”
or even, “I’d like to see a picture of you, too, will you send me one?”

then where will you be when it’s time to say,

“I need your gift first.”
“I can’t talk about that.”
“Don’t call me that name.”
“Don’t touch me there.”
“I don’t swallow.”
“I don’t do anal.”
“I don’t bareback.”

I realize that Anonymous Girl is not dumb, and that she’s asking about marketing standards rather than jumping off a bridge with all her friends. But it is a slippery slope of self-perception, and remembering that you are (and must be) in charge of every step of the transaction is really important when you’re a whore. This is where review boards can be a blessing instead of a curse (read Compartments for an excellent summary of the bad side of boards. There’s usually a ladies-only area where you can ask questions and get a sense of what everyone else is doing. There’s almost always a thread about “Is this lame guy wasting your time/trying to beat down your rate/asking for more pics from you, too?” And the answer is always yes, yes, yes, I’ve put him on ignore.

I would say that more ladies don't show their faces than do. I would also say that the higher the price, the more likely the lady has professionally-taken magazine-quality shots, and the less likely she is to show her face. Check out the escorts at Demimonde and Pearl Elite Independents for lovely shots from which no-one could be identified.

And finally, Gillette has written some great essays on courtesanship and how she went about it. Lots of links within those posts and some very valuable information.

This has been the Practical portion of our lesson. Tomorrow: Theory (on Whoring, Privacy, and Choice).

No comments: