During my career as a massage therapist, I had a number of humorous run-ins with male clients who were wanting more than my standard deep tissue session. My favorite story was when an Orthodox Jewish man tried to bargain with a respected spa for my time. I was freelancing out of a chic West Side day spa that was owned and operated by a gorgeous German woman…ex-model, in fact. The spa bordered Union Square Park at the time, so I generally hung out in the park some before going to work. On this particular day, I was wearing a cute Asian print red sundress that had a slit up my right leg.
As I crossed the park to my building, I noticed the Rabbi following me. (Actually, I’m not certain he was a rabbi, but he looked like one. Not your usual brand of stalker to say the least!) He followed me into the old elevator, all the while checking out my ass and my exposed right leg. Rather than feeling threatened, I was mildly amused. He stood all of about 5 foot tall, so his Orthodox robes hung to the ground. He said nothing as he “examined” me from head to toe, which, in an old Manhattan elevator moving toward the 10th floor, he had plenty of time to do.
“Jesus fucking Christ,” I’m thinking to myself. “All my other therapist friends get hit on by good-looking business men, while I’m stuck in an elevator with a horny rabbi. How unfair!”
We arrive at the 10th floor. I march out of the elevator and into the spa, glancing at the receptionist on the way in with a “Get rid of him!” look. I proceed to round the corner and station myself where I can see the reception desk without being seen. The receptionist was watching the elevator behind me, probably expecting a giant businessman to waltz into the room. She had difficulty controlling her laughter when Rabbi walked in.
“Can I help you?” she asked.
“Yes,” he said, pointing in the direction that I had gone, “what does she do?”
“Nails,” replied the receptionist. “She removes corns and bunions…very painful work.” That was a marvelous lie if ever I heard one!
“Oh,” he relied, looking visibly dejected. “So she doesn’t do massage?”
“No, I’m afraid not. If you have dead skin on your feet, though, she be happy to cut it off for you.”
At this moment, the statuesque German spa owner came out of the elevator. Brigette was her name…she stood about 6 foot 3, with nearly five feet of her height being pure leg. She barely noticed the Rabbi from that far up.
He points toward her now, and asks the receptionist, “What about her? How much does she cost?”
Needless to say, as soon as Brigette comprehended his meaning, she sent him packing, but not before letting loose a torrent of German swear words.
In a footnote here, I should mention that I’ve also caught the eye of two Hindus and a Buddhist. Something about me just calls out to men of faith…I’ve never understood why. I’ve always turned them down gently, though…it just seemed like the Christian thing to do.