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Why I'm Giving Up the Hobby

I remember that it all started so simply - a change in income, new job pressures that went with it, a wife with a similar commitment to her work, loneliness - and, of course, temptation. That was seven years ago.

My first involvement with the hobby was a street pick-up. I was driving up Church street in Toronto about 11:00 p.m. one night and saw a stunning blonde (artificially endowed, as I later found out). This girl was right out of a rock video and was sporting the complete streetwalker look, including PVC boots. I must have circled the block 10 times, trying to decide what to do. Finally, I stopped and talked to her at my window. She wanted $100 "minimum". I was too na�ve to know that this amount and the girls at this location were at the high end of the market, or that the "minimum" approach was a way to stack on extra charges once you were already committed to the deed. She got in my car and we went to a hotel on Sherbourne which rented at $50 per hour. I was extremely nervous, especially about parking the car at this place. I was worried someone would steal the car while I was inside. The girl actually took some pity on me, making sure I gave a fake name to the front desk and didn't give them any credit cards. She walked me through getting undressed and gave me a covered BJ. It was a very brief encounter, I would say that less than 10 minutes after we entered the room we were leaving again. I drove her back to the stroll. I felt immediately guilty and somehow cheated.

However, life continued on as it had. If anything, my career resulted in increased pressure, later and longer working hours, and isolation. Therefore I decided that maybe I had tried the right idea, but had just chosen the wrong girl. I began to cruise regularly in the "high rent" district. I picked up several other girls. They were all similarly expensive and similarly vaguely unsatisfying.

For 3-4 years I gave up on street cruising. Instead, I turned to the strip clubs. This was the golden era of lap dancing. Cheaters, Fantasia, and HOL II were wild places where just about anything went on in the clubs (at one time or another). Even the Brass Rail was a worthwhile spot, as they didn't charge any VIP cover like Fantasia. However, I also found that it was too easy to spend $150 + and leave the club without "satisfaction". I became more selective, only getting dances from girls who marketed themselves very aggressively. This led to better results and even resulted in a couple of full service sessions in nearby parking lots. Amazingly, because those times seem so good in comparison to today, I bored of it. The same girls were always at the same clubs. After a few months, there was no more variety (and I'm saying this despite the fact that on some nights Fantasia had as many as 40 girls on shift at once, announcing them in three lines on their stage). I gradually explored nearly all of the GTA clubs, but found that Fantasia was by far the "action" spot.

About this time, and quite by accident, I discovered MP's. When I was first married, my wife used to give great backrubs. I can honestly say, she was better at this than any other form of intimacy and it was one of the reasons I fell for her. However, over time, she rarely offered this anymore. That development, job stress, some back problems, and encouragement by a work colleague who regularly went to a therapist for acupuncture and massage led me to the door of my first MP. My first visit came when I had a particularly bad workday. I went over lunch. Believe it or not, I did not know at that time that there were massage therapists and there were massage parlours, and that it made all the difference in the world.

My first massage went by the book. It was a one hour Shiatsu massage and the attendant (Chinese, in a nursing uniform) seemed to use some sort of "technique" (although I wouldn't know a real shiatsu massage from witch doctoring). Better yet, I enjoyed it and found that it relaxed me. There was no "release" or even a suggestion of it in that session.

I decided to revisit the same place. This time I got a different attendant. Again, the same nursing uniform and massage technique. However, this time when she asked me to turn over, it was clear she was trying to arouse me. Ultimately, she removed my underwear and performed a "release". My eyes were now open. No wonder there were so many spas and salons! This seemed an incredible bargain for the money! My search for the ultimate massage parlour began.

I discovered the Sun listings first, later Now, then Eye. Initially, I thought the differences might lie only in the attractiveness of the attendants and their "techniques". Of course, what I found was that some places offered "extras" ranging from "topless-no touching" to "full-service" (and everything in between). The fascination (and disappointment at times) was never knowing what you would get - all for between $35-130! This seemed to be the answer.

The notion that good things could be had for a bargain inspired me to re-examine the possibilities on the street. I decided to try some "low rent" girls and found that, not only were they inexpensive, they would do the deed in your car, saving the cost of a room. Some of them were even as attractive as the high rent girls! In 1997-1998 it was not uncommon to see 25-30 girls a night on the "lower track". Some of these girls were crack ho's, some were rip-off artists, some were pimp victims, but some were also nice girls who happened to be single moms or had some other reason to need the quick cash. While hit and miss, and while I was ripped off a few times, cruising seemed like fun and was certainly a good bargain.

I never tried escorts. I called a couple of times. Their rates were always $100 more than the street price. I was not comfortable with the "driver" situation, having been robbed on the street. Whenever I talked to the girls they didn't seem like they were a class above the street girls. I always believed (and still believe) in safe sex and it didn't seem that the escorts would be any safer in that respect. I didn't like the "sight unseen" aspect of requesting an escort. I didn't want to rent a room for a whole night or even by the hour with prospect that the girl would be very late or wouldn't show at all. For all these reasons, I have never seen an escort and will never likely see one.

So far, all I've said is that I traveled down a certain road. The point of telling you all of this is to say that today everything has changed.

First, the strip clubs. In the last two years there have been numerous busts and other changes which have taken any remaining fun out of these establishments. Fantasia closed. The Town of Richmond Hill is determined that the club will never reopen, or at least not as it was. Major busts at Extravaganza, Club Pro, Cannonball, Millionaire (twice), Locomotion, Features and I'm sure many others has dampened the action in the better clubs. Local bylaws curtailing the contact during lap dancing already did that in most of the others. Of course, the end of high contact lap dancing didn't bring the end of $20 table dancing or VIP entrance fees of up to $30 (Fri/Sat night at the Pro). In the heady days of Fantasia, it was only a $40 cover to go upstairs (the most expensive lounge). Strip Clubs have gone from, at best, a wild time and a bargain and, at worst, inexpensive fun, to the worst bargain imaginable and no fun at all. As a result, I've given up on them.

MP's have not escaped scrutiny or change. Some of the better ones have been busted, albeit these busts have had more to do with immigration and licensing than what's been going on inside them. Prices have crept up at the bottom end and shot up at top, now ranging between $40 - 200. I have found an increasing proportion of unattractive attendants in the business. More significantly, my experiences have led me to some unpleasant conclusions. One, if the girl is Canadian or European the massage will be poor and the girl will have no regard for how pleasant you find the experience to be. Two, if the girl is Oriental the massage will be good but: a) there is a good chance she is doing the job under some coercive arrangement (bordering on slavery), and b) there is a better chance that the establishment would be raided. In short, to get any joy from an MP you have to risk being a "found-in" and live with the notion that you may be helping to line the pocket of some white slaver. These realizations have turned me off returning to an MP.

What about the street? Well, developments there have been much the same. Police crackdowns, sentences that include curfews, neighbourhood watch programs, and the threat of publishing the names of John School attendees have drastically reduced the number of girls and cruisers on the street. These days, there is likely to be less than 5-7 girls out in a given evening on the lower track. Worse still, given the conditions, the girls that are more likely to be out are the crack ho's and rip-off artists (neither of which a sane person will pick up).

Counting myself as sane, I have no intention of risking disease, robbery, or violence in pursuit of the hobby. I also cannot see the sanity in cruising for hours, looking for that single girl who doesn't inspire fear or disgust, and then battling another dozen cruisers to pick her up while dodging undercover and patrol police. In summary, now is a good time to retire from the street cruise in this city.

In my opinion, the entire scene couldn't be more abysmal. I have taken this to be a sign that it is simply time to hang up the blades and retire. Oh, there were good times, even some brushes with the wild side, but these opportunities are all now long gone. I will continue to follow the message boards with interest, but I see no serious prospect of changes for the better. Maybe the Committee can arrange for me to sit in a rocking chair at their meetings, rocking quietly while attendees beckon "Tell us about the good old days, Gramps!"

Good luck to all of you and good hunting.

Written By Julie Fantiny


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'No Shows' Alexia

'Secret feelings of an escort ' Kayla

'One big rant' Sasha

'Color on the streets' Kayla

'Rip Off's' Posters

'Dancer's Greed' Yuri

'My Outlook' C2

'Why did I?' Work in Progress

'Turn Off's' Kayla

'How this job has affected me' Annik

'Secret Feelings of a John'
.. by John Smith

'For the Victims' Kayla

'History of the Toronto Escort Scene'
(A Clients View)

... by Oagre

'My First Time'
.. by David Jones

'How To Satisfy A Woman'
... by Robhood

'Most Perplexing Sex Questions'
... by Glamour

'Why I'm Giving Up the Hobby'
... by Julie Fantiny

A Driver's LIfe
... by Arnie


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