Before you get undeniably impressed, be aware of my $6.48 hourly compensation. Nonetheless it was honestly, and without a doubt, the best job I have ever had.
Anyway, back from squirreling (just learned this term yesterday and am now attempting to use it in a sentence), I saw Mr. Depaola’s name on my massage schedule. Although I was not 100% positive it was him, I became embarrassingly giddy and romped around the spa looking for anyone to share my excitement with. We were spa therapists for fuck’s sake, not exactly a collection of literary geniuses. I came up empty-handed.
I picked up Tomie from the relaxation room, a room I can only describe as visually similar to the inside of Jeannie’s bottle (“I dream of Jeannie”, not Aladdin) complemented by the odor of a thousand asses.
I made it a habit to never ask my clients what they did for a living. For a couple of reasons, but mainly because I didn’t give a shit. Not one. That rule was trampled on, absolutely squashed on our walk to the treatment room when the first thing after “Hi my name is…” was followed by “So, what do you do for a living?” The words “I’m an author” had barely left his lips before I began hopping up & down and clapping my hands together shrieking “I knew it, I knew it was you!” (not unlike Marsha Brady’s reaction to meeting Davy Jones). If you are not familiar with this reference, stop reading, go kick yourself repeatedly in the ass and don’t come back.
He was a perfect client, as well as genuinely humble & delighted that I knew his work.
What constitutes a ‘perfect client’?
-Someone who, following our brief intake, trusts my ability to determine their treatment (by brief I mean 12 seconds).
-Someone who doesn’t give me a list of 17 specific areas to work on in a 60 minute massage.
-Someone who doesn’t get up twice in the middle of the massage to pee or vomit (yep).
-Someone who doesn’t wear braids, have 60 hairpins or have hair extensions, but requests a scalp massage.
-Someone who isn’t wearing 6 necklaces, 5 bracelets, and a pair of long dangling earrings (all of which take 7 minutes to remove, cutting into their session time).
-Someone who doesn’t respond with “Fine” when asked how they feel after I flip them over. Fine is how one would describe a tuna sandwich. I detest the word ‘fine’.
FINE = mediocre. Mediocrity is complete shit. I’d rather be dead than mediocre.
-Someone who is able to show appreciation for the 60 minutes of pure bliss I have just attempted to bestow upon them.
-And, in this case, someone who takes my business card from the room, draws a miniature illustration of their infamous storybook character on the back of it and writes a personalized note to my daughter.