With the best of intentions someone suggested that I consider a career in comedic entertainment. I was a bit concerned that having made some effort to write about serious matters one would read and come to such a conclusion. And this one has a thriving legal career and could be considered a critical thinker, so I questioned myself for a moment. But on the basis of his claims that I make him ‘smile, laugh, and bust out’ I have concluded that (hopefully) a small sample of readers are prone to this type of reaction, while the larger sample sees the seriousness.
Having completed work for the day with a client who is disenchanted with being a shadow of his former self and gives the impression that he does not care for the massage, (though he has instructed his daughter to ensure that I visit him regularly) his wife offered me a lift to the main road. During the drive I learnt that she is stressed from trying to get her NIS pension which has been sent to the wrong account number for 2 ½ years. The person on the receiving end is not a pensioner and feels no obligation to return the cash. She is getting the royal runaround because NIS doesn’t want to pay twice. That was not casual conversation to make up time. That was early notice that if the invoice I’m to submit is not paid in timely fashion I need only reflect on her words to know that patience is required. Serious matter.
Saturday evening after class. I’m in my bedroom stretched out on the mat on the floor. Winding down. Phone rings. Didn’t feel like moving. Continues to ring. Alright, I’ll get up. Phone stops. We burn more energy when we change levels. I stood up for nothing. Took the phone and listened to the voice message. Potential client. Lay back down. Couldn’t find my groove. Got up and called the hotel. The Receptionist wanted the first and surname of the guest. I only had a first name. Made a big deal of that. I waited out the lecture on protocol and explained that I was responding to a message left of my phone and that I had no way of knowing the person’s surname. All I have is a name and room number. Do they correspond? I was asked to hold. Then call was put through. Honestly, some of us work too hard for the salary we receive.
The gentleman was soon on the line and we agreed on time and price and the call ended. I returned to my mat. I had a long day and did not feel to go on the road. I decided to let some time pass and then called him back to inquire what were his expectations of the massage. He seemed cool. General massage, no injuries or chronic issues. Fine. I headed to the shower. Hadn’t eaten since lunch so I reheated some food, put it in a disposable container, grabbed a plastic spoon and ate on my journey. I was fifteen minutes late. He did not mind. He undressed and hopped into be in his underpants. I started the massage. He jumped up and asked if he should take the pants off. Yes. He took them off and I continued. He said he knew me. Well, I realized I knew him too. But, we’ve never physically seen each other before or had reason to be in the same space, yet we both registered that knowingness.
Apart from a few shared thoughts and a little gyration on his part, the massage went smoothly. When I was through he lay there looking at me. I asked: What? He said nothing. Fine. I went to wash my hands. Returned and he was still lying there watching me. I told him I was ready to leave and he got up and dressed and paid me. I was bending over hooking up my sandals when he asked if he could be honest with me. I told him honest is the only thing to be. He said he was hoping for something sexual without having sex, but he did not want me to feel disrespected by his request. Disrespect? No, this is serious. These are your feelings and they should not be suppressed. I told him to take his clothes off and get back in bed. He froze. I asked if he wanted the possibility of it more than the reality of it. He could not decide. I insisted that he got back in bed. So he undressed and returned to bed.
I took off my sandals and sat on the bed near him. No need for more oil, I just stroked his skin and he lay there watching me. Let’s talk. We function at several levels at once, levels running base to crown being a simplistic example. This he knows because he is Eastern and wanted to know my religion. I’m still working on it. I continued my speech in Hypnotherapist mode. You are not physically attracted to me, and certainly not emotionally for that is reserved for the one for whom you would like me to play substitute. Right? Maybe it’s a mental attraction. We conversed and your fascination with my thoughts led you to believe that our mental connection could be great if grounded. Your mind has outlined the possibilities you can experience if only you are bold enough to suggest them to me, and if only I accept them. Yet when I appear to accept your proposal you were immobile and speechless because you really don’t want to mess with your significant connection. And the same mind that brought you to this point will engage in all manner of name-calling of me after your physical gratification. For then you will see even clearer that your preference is not and will never be me. Am I making sense? He got up and put on his clothes. I washed my hands again and put on my sandals. He said he’ll be here a while and will call me again. I told him being polite is one thing, but making promises is another. Let’s settle for wishing each other a pleasant night.
It takes me back to that comment about our density. On the ground the space occupied by a stone cannot be occupied by another unless that stone is moved. At higher levels the fragrance of perfume and the stench of sewerage can occupy the same space for their energies are subtle compared to that of stone. So too we bonded and were quite comfortable in our mental engagement during the massage. The two occupying the same space was without questions. But in trying to transform that comfort and oneness to the denser form of our selves required more than a hat-trick, for there was a stone in the place he wanted me to momentarily be, and having the responsibility of deliberately moving that stone for me to fit was not as easy as he probably thought it would be. The human being is a marvelous creation. The density issue is not limited to specific relations. We can think of the many times we overworked ourselves because we shared a plan, and the other party understood and agreed to it on the mental level, but execution of it just was not happening. So we waste less time talking and exhaust ourselves doing everybody’s part.
Strolling down the road to the junction a Cube passed me. A new vehicle on the route that dropped me to work earlier. By the time I got to the junction he was returning empty. He stopped and I asked if he was going back to the Main Road. Yes. I got in the back. He came out the front. He went over to the shop and there was an exchange of hands and he stood in the shop front while the other guy ran off up the road. Soon enough he came running back and there was another exchange of hands and the driver go into the car and drove off. I’ve stood there on several occasions and heard all manner of conversations of things that can be had from rubber-band to contra-ban. He stopped for no one else. I paid him and saw that there was something other than money in his hand but I did not have to get change so there was no worry about him passing anything to me by mistake. About two streets before the Main Road he said he needed to make an off-route to drop off something for someone who is waiting. I told him when he turns I will get out. I’m fine. I won’t know what to say if I am held in a private car on a private road with private stuff.
These young men know $3 drops can’t buy or maintain new cars, so they have decided how much they want to make per day by linking with those who need a courier. The maxis too. Some drivers might not be in agreement, but they tell you the fact is that their work is to transport bandits, guns, drugs, etc. all day. One said he is disgusted with the Police. They find reason to give you a ticket if you don’t put a bribe in the documents when they ask to see your papers. They want them to board the maxi and search the passengers and they don’t do that so another weapon is safely moved from point A to B. The drivers know several of the passengers who use their vehicles to transport stuff, but they can’t make a fuss because if you blink at a man too hard he might make a beeline and kill you. At the end of the day the driver just want to make his quota with some extras and relax, not bleed out on his living room floor. The Police too. All the trouble of search, apprehend, report-writing, etc. and no tips cannot compare to a few blues every time they ask to see your license and registration.
Those tasked with controlling the economics of our world are fully aware that they are making decisions that filter down to this mess. Why would an apparently morally upright man decide that a few minutes of pleasure with a stranger he may never see again is totally worth it? It could be that the nature of his business here is causing him some distress. We understand that one of the side effects of stress is risk-taking. It is for us as Therapists to recognize that the more our client is willing to gamble, the higher the degree of stress they are probably experiencing. So that while it’s easy to say the Devil was tempting him, we’d have to start defining Devil in our various circumstances and work out our salvation accordingly. Same for the taxi driver. He is young with his whole life ahead, but his thinking is severely impaired if he believes that playing courier for the drug-man is worth an indefinite stay in the remand yard. Money answereth all things, the Bible says, so we gotta get it. It’s scriptural. But the systems that facilitate getting it make us work so hard to make ends meet that we don’t realize stress sneaking up and pushing us to take unnecessary risks. Meanwhile the world leaders continue to swivel in their ergonomic chairs in towers and initiate cause, knowing that the man on the ground who is their wound-up toy will run off to university to become an expert at dealing with the effects, which amounts to further harassment of the population.
Speaking of money, I was invited to a week-day service. I accepted. When I got there everyone looked spanking new. I did not know it was a special service with a visiting Apostle/Doctor/Bishop (can’t keep up with the titles these day) from a 2500-seater Church somewhere in the USA. The PA system was loud like it was a carnival band. Noise aside, the worship session was good with the resident Pastor being so moved that he cried half the time. It’s good when a man can cry before his God. I tried not to move too much as my offering was not enough to remedy any carpet damage. Then it was offering time, without coercion. Then came the message and that was as good as the worship. One thing followed the other so there was an alter call before the mic was handed over to the regional Pastor. He called out the drummer for special prayer. Said the Devil wanted to sift him as wheat. I don’t know that that is so bad because I have sifted flour and stuff remains in the sieve, but when some of the brethren sift you, huh! Anyway, I agreed in prayer to the extent that I felt I should, only to learn afterwards that the drummer is the son of another Pastor so that the information that came across the PA system was not necessarily new revelation but could have been based on pastoral discussion beforehand. Maybe not.
And just when I thought he would say the closing prayer, he took out his wallet and removed $500 which he displayed to the congregation saying it was a gift to the visiting Minister and the coercion started. He wanted the congregation to match his gift and specifically requested only $100 donations. It was more than matched. He spoke a bit after saying a special prayer for those who went forward, then he began asking for those with $50, when that weaned, he asked for $20, when that too weaned, he said any amount could then be given. I was suffocating. I do understand that blessings come with giving and that the Man of God needs to afford folks the opportunity to give, but it seems that they are always trying to get the widow’s mites. Wasn’t that given voluntarily? At which point in history did we start insisting on it? Well, I only had one offering and they will never get the widow’s mites from me because 1) I have no husband to leave me widowed, and 2) they don’t want coins in the offering basket. I shall give as inspired.
Back to Saturday in class. We were looking at the effect of the parasympathetic nervous system and the specific mention of acetylcholine as the neurotransmitter. If this facilitates our relaxation response, then we need to be careful will all the 1st World countries habits we are taking on. Like using Botox which adds some youthful look, but is continuously blocking acetylcholine because its work is to keep the muscle contracted. We’re deliberately disrupting the work of the nervous system to look pretty. Anyway we went on to identify some of the responses the PNS facilitates. One being constriction of the pupils so that there is focus on nearby objects. And Mr. Legal Reader came to mind. He turned up for a massage. Had some anxiety issues or something. Began sweating and said he did not feel well and wanted to lie down. I suggested that he disrobe so that I could massage him while he is lying down. No. Said he was too disoriented to change clothes. So he stretched out on the table and I left him for a few minutes. He eventually emerged and said he was better. Good. I helped him hang up his clothes and we settled down to the massage. We began talking, but soon enough he was snoring. Fine. All went well and in the end I got a tip for doing his feet. He said he was advised to always reward work done on the feet. Interesting. We parted ways on a pleasant note.
Next day he messaged me on Whatsapp: I finally washed off the oil you placed on my body late today. However many times expressed…yesterday’s experience…profound. I was so turned on…but also…I was so embarrassed to be turned on…dunno if U saw or felt anything in the massage…I made sure you didn’t see my erection…scared that I will scare you away. I want to kiss those lips… Really kiss those lips… Deeply kiss those lips… Passionately…U got it…
Having started the massage with him supine, I can understand my face being the focal point as he drifted off, but it seems that excessive amounts of acetylcholine was activated and his pupils were severely constricted so that he only saw lips. If these intellectually beautiful men spoke more like this to their spouses won’t they be inspired to go above and beyond their call of duty? I’m hoping he visits again. A part of me wants to hear those lines verbalize. Even if I have to print them bold and give him the paper to read it back to me. Serious thing.