Monday, September 26, 2016

One Nine Two: Negotiation

I'm still thinking about "The Girlfriend Experience" and what one might expect from a professional companion. I do remember some years ago--- maybe eight or nine years ago now ---and a blog by a girl who called herself Debauchette.  She had one of the first (and one of the best) escort blogs. She was clever and witty and literary and a fine writer. I miss her blog. Debauchette always called herself a professional companion. I liked the usage--- back to hetaira, of course, back to the idea of providing more services than just sex. Acquiring the services of a professional companion is about being able to afford the fees, but it's also about a certain kind of compatibility. You're paying for high-end services, but you have to be able to let your companion know what those are. You have to be able to provide a script outline that she can work with.

You'd be working with someone who comes with her own talents and background. I'm imagining it as like hiring a name actor.  You give someone like that a basic outline, and then rely on their own talents. If I were to hire someone like Riley Keough's character, I'd be trusting to her interpretation of the film script in my head. That ability is what justifies her fees.

Yet I'd still have to sit and look at her across a table and explain what I wanted. That's an awkward thing, a terrifying thing. It risks being judged boring and jejune--- much worse than being judged perverted. And it requires you to be able to put what you want into words. That involves self-justification--- again, obviously. There's the temptation to explain and over-explain, to try to show that what you want isn't a bad thing, that you aren't a bad person. Any attempt at explaining what you want is all-too-likely to turn into selling yourself, with all the anxiety you'd feel at a job interview. Explanation also requires that you be very sure about what you really want and that you be willing to admit to yourself that you do want these things.

That's likely to be the hard part. This is what I am; this is what I do. That's hard enough to say into a mirror about perfectly ordinary things. Think about admitting that to a high-end professional across a table: This is what I am; this is what I do. She's probably heard it all before, but would you ever believe that? Would you want to believe that? Would you ever fully believe that she wouldn't laugh or recoil in disgust?

It's much easier to get the envelope of cash ready than it is to put together a clear statement of what you want and what you need. I need you to make me feel like this. I need you to do these things. I've always agreed with the old, old saying that if you know someone's sexual fantasies, you know what the person really is. That's one of the more terrifying things I've ever heard.

Sitting across the table in the darkened bar at the four-star hotel, trying to explain what you're looking for from Riley Keough's character--- can you do that and maintain any sense of yourself and your self-worth? And, too, do you know yourself well enough to ask for what you want?

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