In defense of my johns, and all the rest of you, too
I am not really concerned about what people think about me, when I tell them I’m a phone sex operator. Ever since I grew tits at the age of 11, I’ve been called a slut, a whore, a tramp. When I got to be tall and thick at the age of 14, I got all the body-hate stuff as well: cow, whale, pig (why are they always animals? those are nice animals!). Coming out as queer at 19 (I now identify as bi-dyke, for those of you who must have labels), I felt another strata of insults sliding into place: queer, dyke, “fuckin’ dyke” (well, yes, I try!). See all the layers? I’m pretty well insulated by now.
So what chaps my fat, queer ass when I talk in public about doing phone sex is not what people may think about me. It’s what they think about my clients.
“So what’s the weirdest call you’ve ever done?”
“It must be hard talking to losers all day.”
“So all those freaks, huh? Scary!”
This is part of my inheritance, as a visible, activist-type sex worker in a society in which sex is simultaneously revealed and reviled. I get to publicly defend the honor of my clients, and by extension the clients of any phone sex worker ever, because most callers sure as shit won’t do it for themselves. And by go-go-Gadget super extension, I’m defending the sexual freedom and honor of my audiences as well.
They need it. Don’t you see? It’s a statistical certainty that in any co-ed or male-dominated crowd that I am speaking to, at least one or two of the guys have called phone-sex lines, and probably enjoyed it. It’s even more certain that in almost any mainstream bar or club crowd, a MAJORITY of the people listening, of all genders, have fantasies that they have never told anyone about, like the calls that I mention in my routines. So when they demonstrate their diss, and start making comments or assumptions about how freakish and loser-y my callers must be, my hackles rise. I want to hug them and slap them at the same time. Denial is not just a river in Egypt. Projection is not just making sure people can hear your voice.
You get me? Because my clients are definitely part of the privileged mainstream: they have valid credit cards, and regular jobs, and normal-sounding voices–at least until they start calling me Mommy or Mistress. They at least know where to go to get their sexual ya-yas out. My regulars have a discerning ear, they like what I offer. They talk about their turn-ons, or at least say “Oh, YEAH!” when I hit their buttons. They are fuckin’ horndogs, some of them. They are shy. They feel guilty, or they feel great. Their fantasies are “crazy”, or vanilla, or some neopolitan mix depending on the day.
In short, they are you, dear Mainstream Audience.
So when I answer your questions with some side-stepping comment, not the wild voyeuristic freakshow response that you want; when I don’t give you a joke that ends with a punchline like, “… and then his mother walked in and asked him what he wanted on his sandwich”; when I look out at you from the stage and talk about my clients without ridicule or malice… I’m doing it that way out of respect for them and their sexual freedom. And, though you may not know it or want to claim the gift, I’m doing it for you, too.