Nothing wrong with being mistaken for a sex trade worker

Nothing wrong with being mistaken for a sex trade worker

Twice in my life, I’ve been mistaken for a sex trade worker.

How’s that for a gripping lede?

Let’s establish from the get-go there is nothing wrong with being a sex trade worker, so long as one is safe.

The first time it happened was about 10 years ago, at a large conference being held near Pearson International Airport, in Toronto.

There had been a day’s worth of sessions for the executive of the Ontario Community Newspaper Association and we were lounging in the bar after dinner.

I was getting ready to leave, as the event was not confined to one location and I’d plans to meet friends just a hop, skip and a jump over the QEW, at another venue.

Being a working mom, there was a last minute urgent phone call from one of the spawn regarding homework.

So I took my Blackberry out front to do some remote parenting and math, pacing back and forth in front of the lobby. The signal kept dropping so repeatedly I called back, pacing, pacing.

When family issues were resolved I signalled one of the cabs in the queue to pick me up, and when I gave the driver the name of the hotel I was destined for, he regarded me with large, brown, sad and worried eyes.

“There are better ways to make a living,” he said.

No kidding, was my reply. This business fairly sucks most of the time.

I was, of course, innocently referring to the newspaper industry.

“You need to be very careful,” he said. “You shouldn’t be doing this. You need to think about your life.”

It dawned suddenly that we were talking at cross purposes and the next question naturally is: What were you wearing?

Honestly I was dressed for success and corporate battle, as opposed to solicitation (arguably they could be considered the same thing) — short skirt, knee high leather boots and a full length black lamb’s wool coat.

After an awkward shuttle the cabby let me out and promised he would pray for me.

The second time was just in May of this year. Given that I recently celebrated my 52nd birthday it can only be explained by the fact that it was extremely dark out.

It was on Granville Street in Vancouver, a rare and wonderful excursion with friends to spend the night in the city, enjoy some sights and attend a really great concert.

Everyone else went to bed, in the wee hours, and I wandered out front to sit at the bus stop and have a cigarette, soak up the lights and sounds of the city.

Of particular interest was a club just across the street. It had a red carpet and a rope line and everyone going in was frisked first. Some were turned away without explanation.

To someone who is essentially a small town girl this was fascinating, like watching a special on Netflix. No one pats you down when you walk in the Brown Bridge Pub on wing night.

A young and attractive fellow darted out of the bar, crossed the road and sat down beside me.

After some desultory conversation about the weather (it was quite balmy) he said his friends owned the place that was so interesting, they were ‘very smart businessmen’ and could ‘take care of me’ if I chose to come over and ‘work’.

When I responded I was just going to go to my room and get some sleep, when he realized I was a guest at the hotel, he ran faster than any man I’ve ever seen.

(For perspective, in 52 years I’ve seen a lot of men run. )

It’s a measure of your relationship with family when you can arrive home and announce, ‘Hey, I was mistaken last night for a sex trade worker.’

The eldest son rolled his eyes and said: “AGAIN?”

The middle boy instructed I was not allowed to leave Princeton, going forward.

The moral of the story is two-fold.

There is nothing wrong with being a sex trade worker, as long as one is safe.

And you simply can’t judge a book by its cover — no matter how dark it is.

To report a typo, email:
publisher@similkameenspotlight.com
.



andrea.demeer@similkameenspotlight.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Kelowna Mayor Colin Basran said the city won’t look at changing its policy regarding automatic cost of living pay bumps for himself and city councillors, despite the COVID-19 pandemic. (File)
Kelowna won’t look at nixing automatic pay raises for council, mayor

Mayor Colin Basran said the raise is minuscule, won’t look at changing policy amid residents’ COVID struggles

Kevin Lee Barrett is charged with attempted murder and aggravated assault. (Facebook)
Court hears of victim’s injuries in West Kelowna attempted murder trial

Two-week-long trial continues for Kevin Barrett, accused of trying to kill mother in West Kelowna

Homeless man lying on the bench. (File photo)
Temporary emergency shelter opens in Kelowna

The shelter, located at the former location of Tree Brewing, will offer 38 beds

Interior Health reported 91 new COVID-19 cases in the region Jan. 20, 2021 and three additional deaths. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
95 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health, two deaths

Another member of Vernon’s Noric House has passed

Robert Riley Saunders. (File)
Disgraced Kelowna social worker faces another class-action lawsuit

Zackary Alphonse claims he was not informed of resources available to him upon leaving government care

Icewine is thicker and sweeter than regular table wine, and takes longer to produce. (Twila Amato - Black Press Media)
Mild winter brings small icewine harvest for Central Okanagan vintners

It must be -8 C or lower before grapes can be harvested for icewine

A specialized RCMP team is investigating a suspicious trailer, which might have connections to the illicit drug trade, found abandoned outside a Cache Creek motel. (Photo credit: <em>Journal</em> files)
Police probe U-Haul trailer linked to illicit drugs left outside Cache Creek motel

Hazardous materials found inside believed to be consistent with the production of illicit drugs

Premier John Horgan leaves the podium following his first press conference of the year as he comments on various questions from the media in the Press Gallery at B.C. Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Monday, January 13, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Interprovincial travel restrictions a no-go, Horgan says after reviewing legal options

The B.C. NDP government sought legal advice as concerns of travel continue

A mother hold hands with her daughter while sharing about her struggles with addiction during Overdose Awareness Day. (Jesse Major/Black Press file)
Overdose and suicide support group starts in Penticton

Penticton was one of the province’s communities hardest hit by the overdose crisis in 2020

The steel mills in the Hamilton waterfront harbour are shown in Hamilton, Ont., on Tuesday, October 23, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Dyer: Stay the course on Carbon pricing

Kristy Dyer has a background in art and physics and consulted for Silicon Valley

Voting is the number one, bare minimum way to have your voice heard by government. (File photo)
Jocelyn’s Jottings: Want to make change? Here are some suggestions

As a citizen you have a voice, you just have to know who to talk to

Hedley residents are advised to not drink the water until a pump in one of its wells is fixed. Photo Andrea DeMeer
Hedley residents under do-not-consume-water order due to arsenic levels

Residents in Hedley remain under a do-not-consume-water order, due to higher than… Continue reading

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Gov. Gen. Julie Payette takes the royal salute from the Guard of Honour as she makes her way deliver the the throne speech, Wednesday, September 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand
Gov. Gen. Julie Payette resigns, apologizes for ‘tensions’ at Rideau Hall

Payette, who is the Queen’s representative in Canada, has been the governor general since 2017

Most Read