Day 3.7 – March Madness Parenting Tip

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Through the bulk of my life my dad has worked some pretty crazy hours. Most times he was gone before I woke up for the day and wouldn’t get back until around dinner time…at which point we’d eat and soon after dad would go to bed. Other times he would be working these freaky arsed graveyard shift hours where he would be gone before I got home from school and would be asleep by the time I woke up for the day. Though I remember a lot of mornings waking up to my dad covering me up in a blanket that he’d warmed up in a dryer and getting to say a quick “hi” and “I love you” before he went to work.  Now that I’m a little bit older and looking back, I realize that I didn’t get to spend the most amount of time with my dad, but the time that I did spend with him was amazing.

One of the best compliments that I’ve ever gotten as a basketball player was when one coach told me that I “played like I was 6’6”. For the record I’m only all of five feet and nine inches tall. When I was 17 and being told that I played tall, I thought it was the best thing ever! As you can tell, I loved the comment so much that it’s stuck with me.

Now what does my narcissistic memory have to do with the time I spent with my dad, you ask?

Well, everything!

You see, my dad is 6’3 and is a big guy. He played basketball growing up and was a post player just like I play down in the post. My dad didn’t have sons, so as his semi-tall daughter, it was up to me to be just like my dad. I didn’t think like that when I was kid, my only thought was that I wanted to play just like my dad did in his hay day. I wanted so much to be just like my dad that I even wore his basketball number, 15, all through high school. So not only did he teach me how to play hard as a basketball player, but he also taught me how to play big. I’m competitive so whenever my dad and I would play one-on-one or he would teach me how do something, I wanted to do it better, bigger and I wanted to win. And when you get used to getting beat up, knocked around, and running into a solid wall of dad who is built like mine playing against anyone else isn’t as bad.

During all of that time, my dad and I were having fun.

The only move I never figured out was...how to dunk with authority. Or how to dunk at all!

However, even though my dad come to a lot of my games and always made time to practice with me (Not just for basketball but for softball too!), he still worked a lot. He liked to relax and rest after a hard day’s work and I never blamed him for resting when I wanted to do something else. In fact, my dad was, and still is, so awesome…he made watching TV into a great father/daughter activity. I can remember in high school when March Madness (the be all and end all of basketball tournaments – NCAA college finals!) would roll around and I’d get the rare night that it would be just me and dad watching the game. It was really rare and I remember this particular event happening only a handful of times where I would imitate my favorite post moves as we watched the game. Dad would be laying on his couch and I’d have my basketball in my hands and I’d see a particular move that I loved and I’d just have to try it then and there. So I’d get up and try it. Dad would correct me and I’d keep working on it until I had the general idea of the move learned and in my head. I would spend almost the entire game imitating these giants. I’d try to move just like they did, shoot like they did and get position like they did until I was doing my 5’9 version of what they were doing hundreds of miles away.

Then I’d take it into the gym the next day and practice it until it was perfected. After that I’d show it off to my dad at the first chance I got and he’d correct it again, and again…and again until I had it totally correct. I may not be a giant like the post players in the NCAA are, but at least I could do their moves! For me, this was fun. I loved it. Learning to play down in the post and learning to play basketball in general was one of those special times where I had 100% of my father’s attention. I learned, we had fun and I also wound up with some of my best childhood memories.

I mean who could forget a 6’3 holding a basketball as high in the air as he could while he used his other hand to hold onto his teenage daughters head and singing “Da na na na! Can’t touch this!” ?

My point to this whole entry is that even though my dad worked a lot and couldn’t spend endless hours doting on me (because you know…I also have a younger sister who I had to share the doting with), the time that I got to spend with him was fun, memorable and it helped me to become who I am today.

For those of you who know me, you know that I am definitely my fathers daughter. And for those of you who don’t me, you’ll have to believe me when I say that I am my father’s daughter. I’m proud to say that because my dad made almost every moment matter whether it was teaching me how to play basketball, watching TV or…showing off his impression MC Hammer.

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Day 2.7 – Purple, Purple and More Purple

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My favorite colour in the whole entire world is purple. I currently have purple bangs, purple toenails, purple eyeshadow and purple potato’s. Yes, purple potato’s. I made purple hashbrowns today for my lunch and I was beyond excited to be having purple food. Naturally this reminded of about a year and a half ago when one of my friends/teammates brought purple vegetables to a fundraising lunch we were cooking. I remember purple carrots and purple potato’s that I freaked over. I was delirious to be making purple food.

And now that I’ve been reminded that purple vegetables exist, I want to make purple food. I actually have a great idea for the first thing that I’d make!

It would be Cream of Purple Potato Soup! I actually have a really yummy and easy recipe that I love and use every other week to make normal Potato Soup, so it would be really easy to make it with mostly purple ingredients and have PURPLE SOUP!

Note: This isn’t to be mistaken with “Purple Stew”. That’ has purple tomato’s which therefore makes it yucky.

I think as soon as I can find the ingredients, I’ll make this wonderful purple concoction. Interested? This is my recipe for Cream of Purple Potato Soup! Or can it be Cream of Purple Potato Awesomesauce?

Ingredients:

  • Purple potato’s
  • Purple onion’s
  • Celery
  • Purple carrot’s
  • Butter
  • Milk
  • Flour
  • Pepper (and salt if you’re a salt user)

Prep:

  1. Dice up the purple potato’s, purple carrot’s and half the celery and toss them in a pot of hot water to cook – In this case I’d leave the potato’s with their skin’s for more purple awesomesauce
  2. Chop up your purple onions and the rest of your celery – you want these to be in smaller chunks than your other ingredients
  3. Mix together your flour and milk until all the clumpies are gone

Cooking:

  1. Cook your potato’s and other stuff until the potato’s are done – I like to cook my potato’s until they are very soft so they mash up in the later processes
  2. When the potato’s are as soft and done as you want them, strain your potato’s and stuff off into a separate pot – I put a put in the sink with a strainer on top then dump my potato’s and stuff into that
  3. In my now empty but still hot original pot toss in the butter with your celery and purple onions and cook until the onions are soft. At this point I add my pepper to taste to let that flavor incorporate into my onions and stuff.
  4. Add the milky flour mixture at some point during that process and really stir it all in there
  5. When that is all said and done, add your purple potato’s and stuff back to the mixture and stir it all in
  6. Slowly start adding what is now the purple potato and stuff mixture to the old pot until you have a consistency that you like
  7. Let that all sit for a little while to cook all together then enjoy whenever you want

Ok, so this recipe isn’t an exact science and it kind of turns out different every time I try it (Naturally it’s just normal veggies instead of purple ones, but it’s the same idea), but the general idea always turns out amazing. I love it.

Day 1.7 – Sun Burnt Boobs

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Most of my friends and teammates from high school have seen my butt. I don’t know where I learned it or who I got it from but I had a surprising lack of normal inhibitions in high school. There came a point in my high school rugby career that one of my coaches would check my rugby shorts to make sure the draw string was tied tight enough and good enough that I couldn’t pull my shorts down in under 30 seconds. During that particular rugby season I actually had to wiggle, shimmy and shake a little bit in order to moon anyone that I wanted to moon. Other than rugby though, I normally was wearing basketball shorts with a pair of tights underneath so I was able to flash my bottom around as much as I wanted.

Just ask my poor and ever patient mother: I showed my butt off a lot.

If you ask my sister, she’d tell you that I mooned so many people that the top of my ass actually got a tan line across the top of it.

Weirdly enough, that was true. I did have a tan line across the top of my ass for the longest time after high school.

But you know what? I’ve always had some small amount of modesty in me. There were just somethings that I wouldn’t do. I made out on my best friends front lawn at one point, I went streaking across SFU campus as well as went fountain diving across SFU campus at another point with different group of friends (It was dark and I ran behind everyone and used my arms to cover up the goods whenever I needed to so no one saw much of anything other than my bare behind). I’ve opened my front door for Jehovah’s Witnesses in nothing but a sheet that I barely allowed to cover my boobs. However, I’ve never actually managed to fully show anything more than my ass.

Yes, I retained some sort of modesty.

Tanlines...I had them for a day.

Or at least that’s what I did until I traveled to Mexico alone for a week! I was 21, had saved up all summer long to go on this trip and wound up by myself in a foreign country in a place where no one knew my name and where English wasn’t the dominant language. The drinks were free, the sun was hot, I had my lawn gnome by my side and there were topless women everywhere!

Let me repeat, I was in a land far far away from home where my mom and dad would never find out what I did unless I wrote about it in a future blog so I felt free to do anything and everything I wanted. My first day there I woke up at 6am for some weird reason and was full of energy so I pulled on a sports bra, a tank top, a pair of basketball shorts, slipped on some flip flops and hit the beach. Except for the night before, this was the first time I’d ever been in a large, salty mass of water. The night before didn’t count because I was drunk on tequila and stumble onto the beach to stare at all the pretty stars. Anyway, all tangents aside, I wound up going for a run along the beach.  And even at just past 6am it was hot. I figured that since there weren’t many people around, who would care if I took my tank top off to finish my run? So I did.

Three hours, one long swim, a margarita breakfast and a golf cart ride later I found my way back to my hotel room to shower. I snagged a cold beer out of the fridge and walked into the bathroom because I had decided the only place in the entire world where I liked beer was in extremely hot countries while I showered in bathrooms that had tubs with three shower heads that you could point all towards you. Except…ouch. Ouch. Ouch. Ouch! It actually hurt to pull my sports bra off. Hell, it hurt to just breathe and hurt even worse to shower. At this point I’d only glanced in the mirror so I took that moment to inspect my naked form a little bit better and saw that I was burnt like a lobster that had worn a sports bra into the pot.

After I suffered through a shower I put on a bikini top and another pair of basketball shorts over my bikini bottoms and made my way back to the beach. My bikini kept touching my burnt spots and the glimpses of the pale skin against my new red and darkening colour was really bothering me. I’d had these sorts of tan lines before, but it was nothing like this.

So I took a page from all the topless women around me (There were really only 6 or 7 of them) and stripped off my cyan blue bikini top, dropped it by my lounge chair and settled in to read my book.

That night after a margarita and nacho’s lunch, another swim in the Caribbean, an hour in the gym and 8 chapters of my book, I returned to my room with even burns all over my torso. The only part of me that was my original colour was weirdly, my butt and thighs that were covered by my basketball shorts. And dang, was my butt white.

The next day, I went and picked up some SPF 60 sun screen and made sure I wore that every time I left my room…and doubly sure that I had it on for the rest of my topless days in Mexico.

Day 10.6 – Some thoughts

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I haven’t come up with anything brilliant to write today but some of the things I thought about today were:

  • Book adaptions that I like
  • Another scene for the novel I’m working on
  • More thoughts about the children’s book that I’m working on and needs illustrating
  • I love Southern accents
  • How weird it is to get a pedicure
  • OH MY GOSH! I’M 25!
  • My earthquake emergency kit and the fact that I really should get it together
  • Queen of the Damned by Anne Rice and whether I like the book or movie more
  • Winnie The Pooh and the newest movie and how it sucks – I’m sad that Disney finally screwed something up
  • Mardi Gras

I have lots in my mind that I want to write, but nothing is forming a coherent thought process for me to write on. I think that as a result I’m going to start setting aside an hour a day earlier on in the day where I’ll sit down and just write. Maybe I’ll post it here, maybe it’ll wind up in my book, but I think from now on I’ll start forcing myself to write earlier on in the day.

Day 9.6 – Tops Thursday!

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There are somethings it can't fix...

There are very few things in this world that I don’t put ketchup on: Fruit, veggies, spaghetti, bagels, ice cream and a few other things. Otherwise, everything else gets a good spattering of ketchup on it whenever I eat it. In fact, I love ketchup so much and use so much of it that I normally go through a large 1.5 litre bottle of the stuff a month. Sometimes more. Ketchup makes good food taste infinitely better and for the most part it makes bad food taste edible. Sadly, there are exceptions to every rule so this week Tops Thursday is dedicated to the top 5 foods that I’ve eaten that Ketchup can’t fix.

1. Tomato flavoured Kraft Dinner – As weird as this sounds, I actually don’t like tomato’s in their raw form. I love them in Ketchup, on Ketchup chips, in pasta and in chili, but on their own tomato’s are gross. And that ick factor transferred over to Tomato flavoured Kraft Dinner. When I was a kid and spending a weekend with my Aunt we wound up making box of this stuff and it was gross! Seriously, I must have had more Ketchup in my bowl of KD than actual KD and it still didn’t kill the icky tomato flavour.

2. Liver – there is nothing in this world that can make liver taste good except for old age. My parents and lots of other adults that I know love liver, but I still gag just thinking about the last time I had liver in my mouth. Yuck.

3. Sushi – I’ve tried sushi four times in my life and all of those times sushi made me want to puke, scrub my mouth out with corrosive acid, puke again and then burn my taste buds off to kill the horrendous taste. In fact, I think sushi is so gross that even though we were at one of the best Sushi places in Vancouver, I still spat my California roll out as soon as my friend put it into my mouth. Actually, I kind of just let it fall out of my mouth since I couldn’t even bring myself to close my mouth and attempt to chew this blasphemy to the idea of food. I simply kept my mouth open and stuck my tongue out to let the piece of sushi fall off it and onto the waiting table. My second attempt at sushi involved Ketchup liberally coating my piece of sushi and I still gagged over the awful taste and wanted to lick sand paper after I spat it out.

4. Egg salad – The fact that any and all egg salads smell like rotten eggs and dirty farts simply speaks to the fact that Ketchup can never fix this food.

5. Non-Louisiana Gumbo – I have had Gumbo twice in my life. Once was when I was a kid and spending a weekend with my Aunty and the other was when I was in New Orleans for my 22nd birthday. The first time I ever had Gumbo in my life was wrong. I remember the Ketchup bottle near my dish as I literally filled each spoonful with my gross Gumbo and Ketchup to try and make my uncles food taste good. Up until this point he had been one of the best cooks I’d ever known in my young life so I didn’t want not eat his food that he’d spent all day cooking…but this Gumbo was REALLY bad! Since then I’ve met a great friend who is from Louisiana and have gotten a thorough lecture on never eating Gumbo unless it’s made by someone born and bred in Louisiana because it won’t be good any other way. Apparently the best chefs in the world can’t make a good Gumbo unless they meet the simple standard of being born into a family with a good recipe. Which I believe because Gumbo was an orgasmic experience when I had it in New Orleans. I didn’t even have to put Ketchup on it…actually I couldn’t put Ketchup on it because the lady who made it wouldn’t let me have any unless I promised to eat it as is. So Gumbo is forgiven when I’m in Louisiana.

There you have it, the top 5 things that Ketchup can’t fix.

Day 8.6 – On Muscle Memorization

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The Banana

I’m one of those people who had the “good ole days” of high school and more than that my “glory days” were also in high school. Why? Well, because I played a lot of sports. Basketball, softball, volleyball, rugby and netball all kept me busy throughout my school year. During my regular basketball season I would usually wind up with 3-5 hours worth of cardio exercise squeezed in here, there and everywhere. On a good day I would wind up working out for up to 7 hours. I was so in shape and actually so flexible that I could…bend over backwards!

(I’m the one on the far right)

However, now I’m going on 25 years old and all of those shenanigans are things of my past. I’m no where near as fit as I was in high school and I’d be surprised if I ever got back to that level of fitness. I mean, by my senior year I was living by a Lute Olsen basketball video that said a good post player should be able to run a mile a day…which I did happily, but now that I prefer to think of round as a shape, that mile long run is not going to happen any time soon.

I am happy to report that I am slowly forcing myself back into shape. I’ve banned the idea of “round is a shape” from my mind and I’m attempting to work out on a consistent basis though my work outs are different from the ones I did back in high school. They are slower, more controlled and involve more pain than I remember going through as a teenager. The pain is a given in my mind, however, because since high school I’ve dislocated my right shoulder twice, tore up the ligaments in my right knee and all around damaged and destroyed my body to the point where I can almost feel the rain in my bones now.

The thing that really amuses me though is the fact that my body still remembers how to do everything to an extent. It’s amazing how all the muscle memorization exercises that I put myself through have paid off through out the years. Here, check out the upsides of my muscles instinctively knowing how to do somethings even though I may not mentally be all there through out my growing up years:

High school: No matter how tired I got in high school, I always had perfect form on my foul shot. Not only that, but I could close my eyes while standing on the foul line and consistently sink 6/10 foul shots with my eyes either closed or blindfolded. Yes, I tested this out a number of times just to see if I could do it. I didn’t have much of a life in high school, but whatever I gave a new meaning to “taking a shot in the dark” in my  teenage mind and that was cool enough.

First and Second Years of University: I could do it drunk! It’s not my proudest admission, but there are a couple of instances in my university years where I had a few too many drinks, would get suckered into playing strip something or ruther and would eventually con some over eager guy into playing strip basketball with me. Not only could I make a great foul shot with my eyes closed, but my I had trained my body so well in high school that I could play basketball or basketball shooting games while completely drunk of my ass and actually look sober doing it.

My Early Early Twenties: At this point my parlour tricks of shooting foul shots blindfolded and playing basketball drunk had gotten old. But for intramural and drop in basketball, being able to play basketball with a decent amount of basketball intelligence and not being a total klutz was awesome. In fact, I made a little bit of money off of it in a few cases. For those of you who have seen “White Men Can’t Jump” know how the hustle works. I’d show up at a gym, get onto a pick up team and everyone would whine about having “the girl” on their team…so people would toss some money around and then “Oh snap!” I was actually really good and I’d make a little bit of money for all my troubles. Plus at this point I was still flexible enough that I could bend over backwards and do some other bendy things and I wound up meeting a few men who thought a girl who would literally bend over backwards for them was darn neat.

Image from stacktv.stack.com/Football/Darren-Sharper-Workout/Darren-Sharper-Ladder-Drill-1.html

Present Day Twenties: I’m grossly out of shape. Unless you count round as a shape…then I am very muchly in shape! However, I am banning that way of thinking from my mind, so I’m sticking with the fact that I am grossly out of shape and trying to fix that. I can no longer bend over backwards, but you know what? My body still remembers how to do somethings really well despite the fact that I’ve packed on more pounds than anyone should ever pack on, I’m still somewhat bendy. That and my body is much happier jogging up and down a court dribbling a basketball than it is running on a treadmill. Slowly as I push myself to get into shape, my body is remembering what it feels like to run hard, jump high and do all sorts of other things that I get sore doing…or even just thinking about. I find myself running harder than I had originally planned. I also find myself laughing because I’ve also taken a couple of Zumba classes and in those classes I look like a total fool because I’m a total klutz and can’t seem to wiggle my hips while moving to music even though I can easily work through some old ladder exercises that I have.

My body remembering how to do all the old things that I used to do on a daily basis has been my saving grace in getting back into shape. I honestly think that if I had relearn how to run, jump and move as an athlete I would give up faster than I can say “round is a shape”. Thankfully that’s not the case and all that’s left to do is to get back into shape and try not to giggle as my extra pounds on my butt bounce and jiggle as I work out.

In all seriousness, when I run, jump or walk quickly, I can feel my butt moving. It feels like I have jello stored in my shorts or something.

Day 7.6 – Wild Girl Whisper

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This is just so that I don’t break my writing streak and one of my friends actually put me on a countdown for making a post. So here it is! This is actually the first chapter from the book that I’m working on. It’s called “Wild Girl Whisper” and is about a Vancouver escort. This chapter is about a girl named Rebecca who goes by the name Piper when she’s hooking and in a way, this is her twisted beginning.It’s currently unedited, but I’m actually digging on it as it is. 

Sorry about it being so long…

The Beginning…In a Weird and Twisted Way –

I was standing outside a gorgeous three story townhouse in White Rock, British Columbia. It was dark and the path and the stairs leading up to the front door were barely lit. The door way was dark and all that I could do was stand on a dark street, on a damp sidewalk as my cab drove off into the 1am morning. Still I stood there staring up at the now gigantic and almost palatial three story townhouse that held either my anonymous demise or the solution to my week’s financial issues.

Breathing deeply, I inhaled the smell of wet pavement which is weirdly one of my favorite scents and tried counting myself down to charging up the dark walk-way and knocking on the every growing front door. Or ringing the doorbell. Or pushing the buzzer. What was I going to do? I wasn’t ready for this step. I was too young to die and if I did then no one would know I was dead. No one would even notice that I was missing for several days. I stood terrified in my black Under Armor flip flops, hip hugging faded jeans and baggy Adidas sweater. I danced on the spot and anyone watching me would have thought that I needed to pee, but I didn’t. I was just anxious, scared and my heart was racing three point six million beats a minute and I was calling myself three kinds of stupid for putting myself in this situation.

It was April 2008, I’d just turned twenty-one and I was turning my very second trick of my entire life. Ironically, his name was Jon and he was a forty-something business man who had called my escort agency offering $750 to any girl able to commute to White Rock from Vancouver and that was just for an hour of her time. He also offered to cover her cab fares and his only demands were that she be in street clothes and is the girl next door with no fake body parts.

And out of all of the girls at Wild Lily, I fit the bill the best. Meaning I still had all natural body parts and didn’t have dyed and fried hair to match my anorexic figure.

I was also the only one available to go out on any outcalls and who was I to turn down $750 for an hour’s work?

So there I was, willing myself to walk up to the front door and knock or something.

One, two, better not sue!

Then slowly I dragged my feet up the walk-way through a very well taken care of front yard to oversized oak doors that Shaq could walk through on his tippy-toes. Quietly I stood outside the imposing front doors and the only thing I could hear was the pounding of my heart inside my head as tiny puffs of air made miniature clouds in front of my face.

Huh. I’m hyperventilating.

“Get your shit together, Rebecca. You’ve done this once before. You can do it again. Just knock.”

I paused and rolled my shoulders backwards then forwards, then backwards again and forwards again. I breathed some more and realized some more that I was hyperventilating. I cracked my knuckles and wiggled my toes. I brushed my hair back over my shoulders then pulled it into a pony tail and then pulled it out so my hair fell down my back again. I snapped my fingers, cracked my toes and rolled my head around in circles. I’m pretty sure that a full minuet had passed while I stood there running through every nervous twitch that I had.

What can I say?

This was a stupid idea.

The ultimate in stranger danger.

I was totally going to get shot in the next ten minuets.

Did I go home? Did I turn around and leave? Did I call my cab back and pay out the hundred dollar cab fare home?

Of course not. I couldn’t afford to pay that kind of money for a cab anywhere for any reason. Officially I had fifty dollars to my name with a five hundred dollar rent that I needed to pay at the end of the month. Not to mention my Visa because I’d used that to pay this month’s rent, my cell phone bill and the fact that I was totally out of things to eat in my house besides one or two cans of soup if I were lucky. Between this call and what Cherry would pay me at the end of the week, I’d have enough to set aside for rent, pay my phone and buy a few groceries. Like fruit and bacon.

The idea of eating a package of bacon for dinner sealed the deal for me.

I hiked up my jeans. Then I tugged them back into place, tucked my hair behind my ears, cracked my knuckles and I counted.

One.

Two.

Two.

Two!

TWO!

“Three,” I whispered that final universal word for “you have to do it” and I knocked on the front door and I waited. Immediately a slight calm fell over me as the tension eased out of my shoulders and my armpits stopped sweating. I felt like I could breathe again, like a new person. I was invincible and amazing and that girl all the bad boys want.

I was Stacy’s mom and I had it going on. And I was waiting for the door to open. I don’t know how long I stood there waiting for someone to answer the door, but it was long enough for me to stop feeling like Stacy’s mom and start cracking my knuckles again. It was long enough for me to adjust my sweater, brush my hair back over my shoulders and burp quietly. It was probably all of twenty seconds in the real world, but in my world it was an eternity. Of course I didn’t realize that and I was beyond thankful that the door didn’t open while I was filling my mouth full of air that tasted like the Kraft Dinner with sliced hot dogs that I’d eaten earlier.

What can I say? KD and wieners are the breakfast, lunch and dinner of champions. Especially when I find KD on sale.

Nope, the door didn’t open while I was being perfectly disgusting and making my breath taste like a processed cheese and meat. Nope, the door opened a few seconds after that rather impolite moment  and it was like a cliché scary movie playing out in front of me, starring me. Well, starring me and the mysterious and tall figure who was nothing more than a shadow in the now open door way. Possibly a shadow with a gun, but the shadows around him hid that. All I could see was a tall, lean shadow that was wearing a pair of pants. I knew he was shirtless because his pale chest almost glowed in the dark compared to the rest of his hidden in the dark body. I wondered if all white people glowed like this in the dark.

“Sorry, I almost fell asleep.” His was a deep, rumble of a voice that sounded like a giant cat purring in an acoustically perfect cave.

Immediately I vomited. Not real vomit, but word vomit. “That’s ok. It took me a while to get out here. My name is Piper, the girl you spoke to from Wild Lily? I was the only one available who didn’t look like Porn Star Barbie so Cherry sent me. Normally I’m just the secretary and receptionist, but tonight Cherry needed me to fill in so here I am. Hi.”

A deep chuckle rumbled from deep inside of his chest. “Hi”

Slowly and gently a strong hand reached out from the shadows and pulled me to join him in the dark. Hesitantly I let myself be pulled into the shadows and nearly jumped out of my pants when I heard the door click shut behind me followed by a dead bolt slipping into place. I also started to hyperventilate again.

“You’re new to this.” The giant cat voice spoke to me over a shoulder as I was led from an entryway up a set of stairs. I barely remembered to kick my flip flops off as I was forced to follow or be dragged along behind this shadow with a very nice voice. I was too busy trying to remember how to breathe to really remember anything like not wearing my shoes around in a stranger’s house. The politely bred sixteen year old in me was absolutely appalled that I’d almost work my shoes on someone’s possibly clean floors when flip flops were so easy to take off. I actually barely remembered how to walk. I stumbled up the first couple of stairs, tripped on the third and slamming into a surprisingly well muscled back. At that point I would have been happy to have any one of my normally natural faculties returned to me like speaking. Walking. Breathing. Not being a total spazz.

Unfortunately, some higher being chose to let me speak.

“Is that a statement or a question?” I asked.

“A statement. You’re nervous. Is this your first time?” His hand squeezed mine tighter as he spoke to me and I found myself walking more easily to my slaughter. I pictured myself as some dazed animal being led to some horrifically clichéd death that seems to await stupid girls like me. Shootings. Stabbings. Stranglings. Scarlet letters and stonings.

Right now the audience to the B-grade movie is yelling at me to run. They’re calling me a stupid girl and telling me to get out of their fast because he has a knife or he has a gun. Or they have all seen what he does to his victims and they cannot believe that he’s gotten another victim so quickly and so easily. They’re pissed off because I just walked into this guys house and they all know what’s going to happen to me next. Some people are already cringing and waiting for the blood to spray on the walls.

And while this is all going on in my audience, I’m vomiting more words. “This is my second time actually. Though I barely count the first time as my first time. It was horrifying and I’m not really sure what happened. He hump on his back and bad breath and he told me over and over again how much he loved me. I wasn’t prepared for something like that though. I’m not really sure how anyone could be prepared or ok with being kissed by someone when a kitten who had just hacked up a rancid hairball would have had better breath. I’m sorry, I’m babbling. You can feel free to demand my silence anytime that you want.”

When I stopped and took a deep breath, he chuckled again and tugged me into what I can only assume was his bedroom. Or an emperor’s bedroom. Floor to ceiling windows covered the far wall while a giant king sized bed, a fire place that had a real fire with a giant flat screen tv hanging above it dominated the room. It was a Spartan and barely furnished room, but what was there was lush and screamed of money. Lots and lots of money. The carpet was plush and soft under my toes and the room was deliciously warm. At that moment it was only lit by the fire crackling in the fireplace and I couldn’t help but fall in love with the cliché as the heat of the room chased away the chill of the rainy night I’d been standing in. He had bedside tables on either side of his bed and there was a tall chest of drawers beside closet doors. For whatever reason, I decided to focus on the chest of drawers.

“Do you make a habit of telling other clients about your former clients?” He turned and pulled my sweater over my head, folded it and placed it on top of the drawers.

Instantly I was horrified by what I had said moments before. “Oh gosh, no! I mean, maybe? I don’t know. This is only my second time after all so I don’t know what my habits are yet. But I can promise you that from here on out that my clients are assured utter discretion on my part. I mean, I didn’t use his name right? But I don’t know. I’m really, really nervous. I’ve never done this before.”

“I thought you said this was your second time?” He asked as he pulled me over by the fireplace. I could see more of him now as the fire light made the shadows dance away from his body. His hair was that classic salt and pepper look that I’m sure all dark haired old guys want. He was lean, but I could see that he was well muscled. His jeans sat loosely on his hops and as he turned around to pull me into his arms I saw that his chest was bare and I wondered that if that was natural or if he shaved his chest. All in all, he wasn’t awful looking for an older man.

So I let myself be pulled into his arms as I let myself vomit even more words. “Well, this is my second call, but I have never taken a hundred dollar cab ride to anywhere as a part of my job and I’ve definitely never gone to a total strangers house in the middle of the night because he wants to pay me for my…” I trailed off as I surprisingly stopped to consider my next words. “What exactly are you paying me for?”

His hands slid down my lower back and slipped under my purple tank top. “Exactly what you think you’re here for,” he replied.

That’s when my bosses voice started screaming in my head to get the money first. “You always get the money first.” Her sultry voice commanded in my ear as I pictured her as she was the other night as she sat with me on a bed and went over all the rules of being an escort for her.

“Oh yeah!” I replied to that stranger inner voice that belonged to my boss. Quickly I looked up into the dark eyes of my client whose name I had yet to learn and who had full intentions of boning me so that he could pay my rent and then some. “About that. Umm…” My voice trailed off as I considered how to remind him about the fact that he owed me nine hundred and fifty dollars. “About the umm…” There was no easy way of asking someone to toss that kind of cash out. I had no idea what to say, what to do or how to do it.

Though I did have the weird urge to simply go cross eyed and hope that he would jump to the conclusion I needed him to reach based on that action alone.

Thankfully, I didn’t have to go cross eyed or do anything weird. He seemed to get where I was going with my lack of social graces. He let go of me and walked over to his bedside table and pulled out a wallet and a thickly stuffed envelope. Casually he walked over to where my sweater sat on his chest of drawers and placed the envelope on top of my sweater. Just as casually he opened his walled and asked “You cabbed from Downtown right?”

I nodded and swallowed. I was getting nervous again. Which meant I started worrying when I was going to get shot again. “Yeah,” I replied slowly, “Wild Lily’s in-call place is near the Stadium Skytrain Station.”

“I know, I’ve called Cherry a few times. Normally I get Juliette or Heaven. They say it’s about a $175 cab. That sound about right?”

“It was actually only a hundred,” I blurted out before I realized that I’d just outted two of my…Coworkers? Yes, coworkers. I’d just realized that I’d outted two of my coworkers in less than ten seconds about their semi-expensive lie. I froze in place for a second before adding, “So you’re almost right.”

Laughing he counted out four bills and laid them on top of the envelope. “I enjoy your honesty and I almost enjoy how nervous you are. Though I’ll have to start asking for receipts from you girls in the future.” I heard the laugher in his voice so I didn’t worry overly much about me or any other girl having to provide receipts because I’d told on them. He returned his wallet back to his bedside table before walking back to me.

As he made his way back over to me, I looked him up and down quickly, checking for a gun or oversized knife. I gave him a once and a twice over, searching for a weapon of any time or a place he could hide a weapon of any type. When I saw neither I figured that I was either safe or that I was getting strangled tonight. I wondered where he was going to dump my body. I debated the fact that I needed to watch less TV. His arms wrapped around me again and I forced myself to breathe normally and to will him not kill me. Just like Mel Gibson in Lethal Weapon says that you just have to will these sorts of things to happen.

So I willed it. I was definitely not too old for this shit and I wasn’t going to die tonight. I wasn’t going to get killed tonight. I wasn’t going to get killed tonight and I wasn’t going to be another missing persons report and winds up found in as a pile of bones.

“Sweetheart, you have to calm down for this to work. The young and scared routine is getting old. You have to be at least in your late twenties and it’s just sex. I’m not going to hurt you.” His hands rested on my hips as he spoke to me. They were slowly guiding my hips forward so that I could feel either the hard handle of the gun he had hidden in his pants or he was one well endowed gentleman who though I looked older than I really was.”

“Actually, I’m twenty one.” I glanced up at him as I let him guide and fit my curves against his body. Then I glared at him. “Really? Late twenties?”

Smiling he replied mockingly, “Really? Twenty one?” Then he playfully glared down at me and bend me backwards over an arm so he could kiss my nose. “If you’re twenty one then I’m old enough to be your father. I’m forty eight.”

Laughing I leaned away from him and told him that my dad was forty five. Then dramatically I put the back of my right hand to my forehead and shouted, “I’m so young! Whatever shall we do?”

His reply was to unzip my jeans to reveal a neon green frog shouting “HELLO STRANGER!”

But still there were still twinges of fear in the back of my head. I tried not to ask. I tried to lose myself in the moment of this very rich man undressing me and the fact that he was paying me to let him see my silly panties and more. I tried holding my breath. I tried, oh I tried, not asking the question burning its way up my throat like a rancid burp. I tried and I failed. “So am I safe? I’m not going to wind up dead in a ditch or dead anywhere else am I?”

Chuckling warmly he kissed my nose and pulled me over to his bed, sat down and pulled me into his lap. “No I wouldn’t be so clichéd as to toss you dead in a ditch and no you’re not going to turn up dead anywhere else. Yes, you’re safe, I try not to make a habit of killing at this hour. It upsets the digestion, you know.”

I couldn’t help but snort and laugh. Then gasp in horror because I had just snorted. Me, a slightly upscale escort had just snorted when I should have been seducing and blowing my partners mind and other parts to Heaven and beyond.

Blushing, I wiggled around in his lap until I was straddling. “Well then. Now that we’ve taken care of that piece of business, I move that the conversation be stricken from the record and our memory for all eternity.” Playfully I leaned down and nipped at his lower lip while his arms wrapped around me so that his hands could fiddle with the belt loops of my jeans.

“As you wish,” he replied.

“I love that movie! Andre the Giant is awesome!” I exclaimed excitedly, totally forgetting that I was supposed to be seducing this man. At this point I was pretty sure that I wasn’t getting paid and would have no way of getting home tonight.

“You talk a lot.” His deadpan reply had me wondering where he was keeping the knife and other life stealing tools. I also started thinking about how I was going to get home with fifty dollars in my pocket.

I decided to try and play my silliness off and pouted. “Oh. Is that bad? I’m sorry, I’m new and I really have no idea what the hell I’m doing.”

“No,” his voice had picked up its warmth and rumble again, “it’s cute. I prefer that you’re real instead of some over practiced and over used prostitute.”

“But I’m an escort.”

“Sweetheart, that’s semantics,” he replied as he slid his warm and rough hands up and down my back and leaned into nip and nuzzle my neck.

And cue the naughty Harlequin sex scene where I definitely did not end up dead in a ditch.