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Posts Tagged ‘Maggie in the Media’

I can always be counted on to persevere as long as it is humanly possible to do so, and then just a bit longer.  –  “Eighth Anniversary

As I wrote one year ago today, “There are quite a few older blogs, but I daresay not many bigger ones; despite travels, travails and troubles, I’ve somehow managed to produce a post every single day since July 10th, 2010.  That’s [well over] 3000 of them now, and that isn’t even counting the booksessays for other publicationsaudio and video interviews, and speeches I’ve given in public (not to mention the innumerable unrecorded rants to which I’ve subjected my admiring clients and long-suffering friends, the latter not always while entirely sober).”  On top of all that, I now have my own documentary (which you should watch if you haven’t already).  I’ve reached the point where I summarize that as “for the past decade”, and given the incredible density of posts I think that’s acceptable shorthand; in fact, those who follow this blog closely have probably noticed that I’m already shifting toward looking back at essays from ten years back rather than a mere three (expect a new feature in January).  I’ve sometimes said that I’m not entirely sure how I’ve managed to continue for this long, but that’s a self-effacing lie rooted in my Southern Belle upbringing.  In reality, I know exactly how I’ve done it:  it’s a formula consisting of personality force, righteous indignation, stubbornness, anger, and OCD, in roughly equal proportion.  And though (like most people) I’m not entirely sure how much longer I have in this incarnation, I have no plans to stop fighting this war until there is no breath left in me.  And truth be told, I’m not even sure I could stop even if I wanted to.

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Regular readers know that summer is not a good time for my nervous system; there’s just too much light for far too many hours a day, and when it’s light outside until almost 10 pm my brain doesn’t even start winding down until after midnight.   But though moving to Seattle meant having to endure about an extra hour of light in the summer than I did when living in the South, it also means less frustrating heat and readily-available cannabis edibles with which I can force my brain to relax.  That doesn’t help me in the hours when I have to be moving around doing stuff, but fortunately this past week was a busy one, and when my mind is busy I notice the anxiety less.  Besides some pleasant work, I got to spend Wednesday evening watching Doctor Who (and four episodes of Good Omens) with Lorelei, Friday evening helping a friend move, and Saturday and Sunday evenings at events for Thaddeus Russell (you can hear me at the very end of an upcoming live podcast in which Thad talks with Katie Herzog of The Stranger).  Add to that the fact that I went into the week on the heels of an exceptionally good weed trip, and ended it on another that I hope will be just as good (I’m writing this Sunday evening and the edibles haven’t kicked in yet), and that tomorrow I’m heading to Sunset for the long weekend, I’m in a really good headspace right now…and for the week after the summer solstice, that’s practically a miracle.

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Lately I’ve been getting a larger-than-usual number of enquiries from guys who’ve never seen an escort before.  Some of them find me through this blog, some via my Twitter, others via my articles in Reason or my various interviews, and still others via my ordinary escort advertising.  Some of them want to see me in particular, while others are just looking for general first-timer advice, but nearly all of them are nervous (or even full-out scared) about the possibility of falling into a trap set by the pigs.  That’s why they contact me; even the ones who discover me via my escort ads usually notice that I’ve got a strong decade-old social media presence under the same name, and as I myself have said many times that’s a very good indicator that a lady is the real deal rather than some pervert cop pretending to be an escort so he can have the fun of destroying a man’s life for the terrible “crime” of loneliness.  Most of these guys, however, are not regular readers, and this blog has become so enormous it’s a bit daunting for the newcomer.  Hell, it’s sometimes even intimidating to me, and I wrote the damned thing!  So I think it wouldn’t hurt to pull together a “best of” collection of resources for new clients that I can then simply link when one of these new gents contacts me.

The single most useful essay on the topic is undoubtedly “What To Know Before You Pay for Sex“, from the July 2018 issue of Reason; I wrote it specifically for guys who are neither regular clients nor regular readers, so it contains all of the information I consider vital in one brief and easily-digestible article.  It draws in (small) part on “Advice for Clients“, which I think still holds up despite being a decade old.  And then, of course, there are a number of Q&A columns about the basic mechanics of finding sex workers:

And some about more specific issues that could be of especial interest to newbies:

I think that’ll do for starters, but if you want more there are links to scores of essays on my questions page.  And if you’d like to see me specifically, all the information you need is on my escort site.

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I’ve got an article on sex work, money and consent in the new print edition of Reason, and I think y’all should show your support by picking one up!  But if you have neither subscription nor newsstand handy, here it is online.  A sample to get you started: 

…In the realm of sex, consent has been elevated to the level of a sacred word.  But in practice, most of us believe in a host of exceptions…Many if not most of these exceptions involve sex, money, or power, so it’s not surprising that sex work—which involves all three—inspires some truly absurd mental gymnastics on and around the concept of consent.  Statists, both in and out of government, like to play Kafkaesque games with the idea of consent.  We are told by a certain type of feminist that consent must be explicitly verbal, ongoing, and “enthusiastic”.  They say it must be tiresomely re-ascertained over and over and over again, no matter how clearly it was expressed in the first place.  Modern Puritans, meanwhile, claim that people who engage in “deviant” sexual behavior (including sex work, BDSM, and—until very recently—homosexuality) are suffering from “Stockholm syndrome,” “trauma bonding,” or “false consciousness” and thus cannot consent to things they claim to enjoy because they are not in their right minds.

But the most bizarre of these tortuous mind games, popular among radical feminists for years but gaining momentum today among “progressives,” is the idea that if a person is paid to do something he wouldn’t do for free, that constitutes “coercion” or even “violence”.  As Reason‘s Elizabeth Nolan Brown pointed out a few years ago, “In Seattle, sex must be a ‘leisure activity’ for both parties or it’s nonconsensual, according to one area prosecutor.”  Brown was writing about Val Richey, a senior deputy prosecuting attorney for King County, Washington, who argued that all sex workers are victims of rape because someone paid them “essentially to turn a ‘no’ into a ‘yes.'”  This dogma is deranged.  Richey doesn’t do his job for free; does that mean he is coerced, too?  This contradiction doesn’t seem to occur to anti–sex work crusaders, because they’re unwilling to accept that sex, like every other part of the material world, is not distributed “evenly” or “fairly”…

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Meagan works for Prostasia, the organization which sponsored the Bay Area screening of The War on Whores, and I met her in person the day of the screening.  She interviewed me for Prostasia’s podcast (see below), and when Jeremy Malcolm sent me the link to the video he also included this essay Meagan wrote, which I found so sweet and touching I asked for permission to share it.

Why Maggie McNeill is My Hero

There are a lot of good reasons why Maggie McNeill should totally be your hero.  I mean, she’s brilliant, well spoken, sexy as all get out, an outspoken advocate for civil liberties, sex worker rights, sex positivity, child protection, the list goes on.  Basically, Maggie is the feminist we need if not the feminist we deserve.  But that’s not why she’s my hero.

Allow me to tell you a story.  Just to set the scene, it’s a Tuesday in the Bay Area.  My boss and I have had the pleasure of hosting Maggie all afternoon and evening.  She was kind enough to do an interview for Prostasia’s Podcast Sex, Human Rights, and CSA Prevention, then we all shared a lovely dinner and cocktails.  That was followed with the Bay Area premiere of The War on Whores, and we all capped the night off with lovely conversation and pie in a little diner near her hotel where we were dropping her off.  But on the way from screening to pie, there was a spot of bother on the freeway; a large plastic garbage can had wedged itself under the car and for a moment we feared we’d popped a tire.  So we pulled over and got out to investigate.

Now, it’s worth noting that I don’t drive and have a deep mistrust of cars, despite accepting them as a necessary means of transportation.  So I’m standing on the side of the road with my boss and Maggie, and she comes to the conclusion that if she and I stand on the garbage can while he backs the car up slowly, our combined weight will keep the can in place so we can free it from under the car.  I dunno what you always thought a day with a (in)famous sex worker would be like, but friends, this isn’t what I had in mind…Anywho, Maggie, who is super brave, btw, and I stand with a foot each and most of our weight on the can and the car is backed up slowly.  The closer the wheel got to our feet, the more I started to panic; directly to our backs were cars rushing by at freeway speed and directly in front of our toes was a car tire.  So, some part of my brain is aware that in my professional capacity, I should have probably had Maggie stand at the side of the road, away from the scary cars, and done this myself, because good hosting and whatnot.  But I’m apparently a giant baby, so instead of honorably protecting our guest, she casually coached me through this ordeal as I whimpered and had trouble forcing my body to keep my foot in place.  Her plan worked perfectly, but during the last stages she kept her foot on the can and it started dragging her a bit (she’s been in heels and a slinky evening type gown this whole time, btw).  So before I know what I’m doing, I think I wrapped my arms around her to make absolutely sure she didn’t go down as the center of balance changed.  I’m pretty sure she was in no danger of that, and it was a dorky overreaction on my part.  Hi, my name is Meagan and I was a huge dork in front of Maggie McNeill several times in a day and she was nice to me anyway.

The thing is, anyone can cultivate a reputation, and social media makes it easier than ever to build and perpetuate propaganda.  But these silly, random, slightly dangerous moments in life where people have to just be people to get through it, reveal a lot more about a person than their press does.  Like I said, there are a lot of good reasons to be a huge fan of Maggie.  Her social work, her “social” work, her writing, her documentary, her body, her mind, her fantastic makeup and fashion tips, how incredibly down to earth she is when she really doesn’t have to be…but I will always be a big fan of Maggie because of one very random, very silly, very human moment on the side of the road, headed towards San Francisco.

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If you’ve been waiting to watch The War on Whores until it was on Amazon, you need wait no longer; it’s there, and even included with your Prime subscription!  As I explained on Monday, Amazon objected to the word “whores” in the title (despite there being lots of titles containing that very-ordinary word all over their site), but customer service told my producer Paul Johnson that they would not object to the title The War on Sex WorkersSo naturally I just rolled my eyes and let them clutch their pearls, especially because the film isn’t changed in any way; when you play it you’ll still see The War on Whores as the title, so only the display title on Amazon will be bowdlerized, presumably to protect Amazon’s delicate algorithms from sex rays which might cause them to malfunction or something.  Still, I’m glad we’re there; Amazon is very good exposure and presumably the title will pop up on my IMDb page soon (it already appears on Amazon searches with my books).  Now let’s see if iTunes gives us similar issues, given Apple’s legendary prudishness (surpassed only by Facebook).  Of course, the best way to see the film is on a big screen followed by a Q&A session with me; we had several of those last week, and as of right now the next scheduled ones will be in Orlando and Tampa/St. Petersburg Florida (courtesy of SWOP Behind Bars) on the 21st and 22nd of June (I’ll give you more details as I get them).  I’ll also be screening it at the Woodhull Sexual Freedom Summit in Alexandria, Virginia at 6 pm on August 16th, then elsewhere in the DC area in September at an event for Reason Magazine.  Screenings in New Hampshire and Austin, Texas are also in the works, but they are tentative for now.  One more thing:  please consider helping out by donating to my fundraiser!  So far you’ve made two events possible that would not otherwise have been feasible, not to mention getting us on Amazon and starting the DVD burning process.  The same increasing censorship which forced me to hide the real title of the film has also prohibited me from listing the rewards for donations on the fundraiser itself, so here they are again:

$30 or more – Donor
Permanent inclusion in blog-supporter deals (free stories, etc).

$60 or more – Friend
Autographed DVD of The War on Whores (will be sent when DVDs are delivered to us, probably late spring)

$125 or more – Sponsor
Autographed copies both of my books, plus The War on Whores DVD when it comes out.

$250 or more – Patron
When I’m in your city, I’ll have coffee with you and hand-deliver the Sponsor-level gifts plus an autographed poster!

$500 or more – Angel
When I’m in your city, I’ll have a leisurely dinner with you and hand-deliver all the Patron-level gifts!

$1000 or more – Producer
I will make a special trip to the city of your choice and give a full screening of the movie, with Q&A session, to the group of your choice!  If you have no special group, I’ll give you the Angel package without your having to wait until I reach your city!

Wont you join me in my continuing efforts to spread the word about this important film?  Thank you so very much; I couldn’t have made it this far without your help, and I’ll need more of it before we’re done!

 

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Since the requests are staring to come in and I launched my fundraiser on Monday, I figured it was time to let y’all know how you can see The War on Whores for yourself.  The easiest way, of course, is simply to watch or download it on Vimeo; it should soon be available on Amazon as well, and we’re working on getting it into the iTunes store.  Next week or so we’ll be starting the process of getting DVDs made, and those will be for sale as well (and I’ll be sending out autographed copies as gifts for donations.)  The best way to see the film is at a sponsored screening; the next one will be at the New Parkway Theater in Oakland, CA at 7:30 pm, Tuesday, April 9th.  Tickets are $20 and can be purchased in advance.  The next one after that will be Minnesota State University in Mankato, MN on April 29th, at 4 PM in the Ostrander Auditorium in the Centennial Student Union; that event is free to students & faculty.  I’m also trying to set one up in Chicago a few days later, and we’ve got possible future screenings in the works for Washington, DC, Austin, TX, Providence, RI, and Orlando, FL.  The way to set up these screenings is to email me; I’ll forward your email to my producer, Paul Johnson, who sets up the actual details.  Please be patient; Paul can only work on about two events at once, plus he’s got other tasks to do (like getting the discs burned) and this isn’t his only film, so he often has quite a few plates in the air at once.  Obviously, nearer events and those who can pay all the screening fees, etc, are the highest priority, but my fundraiser is intended to cover the fees of student and activist groups who may not have very much money; please do not ask for this unless you really need it, because the funds will only go so far and we want to use them to help groups who really have no other options.  If, on the other hand, you are in a position to be generous, you could sponsor a screening yourself; if you’d like to do that just email me using the link above and we can get to work on it!  Last but definitely not least, we are trying to ignite as much buzz about the film as possible so it will be widely seen; if you can somehow help with that (for example, if you have a TV or radio show you can invite me on to talk about the film), please let me know via this link.  There are many ways to help us get this important message out, and as always I’ll need the help of my readers to do it.

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