Last night, at a cozy and welcoming Italian restaurant on the Upper West Side, my husband and I celebrated our two year anniversary. Surrounded by the wealthy, yet understated, quintessential UWS intellectuals, while my hubby wore his new button-down and I had my hair done all nice, we noticed just one little sore thumb at the corner table across the room: a man coming close to 80 dining with a woman coming close to her next paycheck.
The woman, a very attractive Asian in her thirties, wore an amount of make-up suitable only for the Miss America pageant, and a strapless knee-length floral dress (inappropriate for the 40-degree Fahrenheit outside, and frankly, for the UWS in general). Her long flowing black hair neared her lower back, and was perfectly curled at the bottom. This woman did not just “throw on any old thing”. This took effort. This took practice.
My hubby said, “She’s a gold digger”. This woman seemed incredibly capable at pleasant conversation, as she exhibited sincere interest in the elderly man, and seemed to be engaging his interest as well. She was good at this. She did not look like a woman who was trying to find a rich man to take care of her. This woman did this for a living.
“No”, I said. “She’s a call girl.” I did a little borderline offensive, stereotyping, psychological evaluation of her, and deduced that she was incredibly bright, but decided to use her intelligence for the world’s oldest profession, instead of the standard Upper West Side non-profit/professional/medical/legal/democratic-minded/Masters-degree-or-higher-necessary career. My hubby said, “Maybe she went to an IVY League, but had “Daddy issues” and decided to become a call girl. There are plenty of girls who work their way through top colleges by stripping”.
“Stripping is not the same thing as being a call girl.”
“No, but it’s the same path” he said.
“Yeah, no,” I said, judging purely on looks. This woman is not working her way through Columbia Law School.”.
I looked at this sore-thumb couple in the corner of this family establishment and thought, “Good for them”. She’s making a living for herself and he’s got the money to spend on good company. Sure, she may have to do the sumthin’-sumthin’ with the old dude, but girl was making a living. And sure, he’s gotta pay for a woman who looks like that to spend the evening with him, but at least he can pay for it, right?
I’m not one to condone sex for money (nor those who pay for it), but they looked happy. They were both getting what they wanted. And even if she was a gold digger, and not a call girl, it seemed as though she was on her way to a jackpot (hey, at least she got dinner).