Hard Work in a Casino ;)

For 5 1/2 + years I have been a massage therapist. Obviously I get asked stupid questions and am offered offensive opportunities (otherwise this blog wouldn’t be up and running!), but some of the best questions and quotes come from a casino I have had the pleasure of working in.

My position in the casino is to give table-side massages to players throwing away money at a poker or blackjack table. We didn’t waste our time with the slots; felt-table only. If you’ve ever worked in a casino, you know there is no problem with our economy. Millions and more are spent in casinos, literally just gone in seconds. (I’ve watched players put $10k down on a blackjack table and lose it and just walk away seemingly unscathed.)

Many ponder: “How does a massage therapist work the floor of a casino?” Answer: With nerves of steel. The gist: I walk around (looking good of course) politely hollering “Massage? Massages? Massage for anybody?” to each table that has a player at it. Most say no or give me no response whatsoever. At this point I can almost tell which people would or wouldn’t get a massage tableside.

Naturally, my hollering takes people off guard and they laugh or ask those stupid questions. But luckily, it is because of these stupid questions I have finally been allowed to release my witty tongue. Many men in these casinos have a drink or two or three or more and are more than happy to ask inappropriate questions (aka SEXUAL HARASSMENT!). For years I have been biting my tongue to not say nasty responses or be a slight bia to those who have been nice enough to ask me for happy endings.
But working in a casino, I can get away with a lot more than I could working for a popular mouse-opoly.

The blogs in the Casino category will be less lengthy and are for venting and entertainment purposes. All you LMTs out there who bite their tongues when the ignorant and belligerent pose gnarly comments: this is for you!

Noni (pronounced Nah-nee)

My entire career as a massage therapist consisted of jumping from this job to that. But I’ve always been consistent about doing my outcalls. An outcall is having a private client call for a massage session at their location (hotel, home, apartment, business, etc). This is where the more sketchy clients come from. This is the part of the job many people get freaked out about. I have had my share of great private outcall clients and not so great.

FYI: I went by the nickname “Noni” out in Hawai’i (take the last few letters of Shannon and put an i at the end). It wasn’t a common name out there but it wasn’t uncommon either. And it was a lot easier for some locals than “Shannon”.

I stayed in an apartment complex in Hawai’i for a year or so and would post my business cards in the laundry area. Sometimes people would call for inquiries but not many took the bait. One of my clients was a Hawai’ian guy.
He was in construction and worked out often and stayed active. He called me asking for a sports massage. The first couple of massages went smooth. The third one was the charm.
After setting up the table, I excused myself to the restroom. As I always do, I told him to give me a shout when he was ready. I heard “Okay” and stepped out and there he was completely naked by the table. Before I even registered the complete nakedness I went back into the bathroom apologizing profusely. I thought he said “okay!”

I come back out when he confirmed he was on the table under the sheets and again apologized. He said no problem just a minor misunderstanding. The massage was only a 30 minute sports massage. It was going quite normal until it was time to turn over. Like a good therapist I hold the draping in a way to not expose the client in an uncomfortable manner. Somehow he snagged a bit of the sheet on the way up but it did not expose anything. As I sat down near his head to work on his neck/chest, he chose that moment to adjust the sheets to normal – giving me a peek of what I didn’t want to see (for a second time in a day).

I disregarded it and finished the massage. As I finished packing up the table he pulled out a joint and offered it to me. As tempting as it was, I try to keep that part of my professionalism away from recreation. For those who don’t get it.. i said no! (proud of me, mom?)
I charged $45 for the 30 minute sports massage. He said he only had $40. Feeling guilty for the exposure earlier I said don’t worry about it. As I pocketed the money, he muttered something:
Him: “since you blkjlfajsdflkasjdflk noni.”
Me: “huh?”
Him: “laskdjfalskdjflskdjfs noni”
Me: “I still don’t understand you”
Him: “alskjdflajsdlfkjs noni”
Me: “All I hear is you saying my name”
Him: “YOU SAW MINE! SHOW ME YOUR PUNANI!!”
Me: “What? No! That was an honest mistake! I thought you said you were ready! I’m not showing you my junk!”
Him: “I’ll give you another $20”
Me: “i thought you said you didn’t have enough for the massage? well keep your $20. i think you need to find a new therapist”.

And I left. He tried to call for another appointment and I “sweetly” told him that the type of massage he was looking for wasn’t what I offered. As I always did with “confused” clients, I referred him to the back of the Weekly.

 

For those who aren’t familiar with the term “punani” look it up in the urban dictionary.

Reno911!

One of my favorite shows is Reno911! One of my favorite movies is Reno911: Miami! This story has nothing to do with the show.

The first spa I worked in was not ideal, but as we all experience (well, most of us do), it takes time to get to the top. Not only was Spa Unrejuvinated my first spa but it was in Hawai’i back in 2007 or 2008.

I had been hired quite hastily and should have taken it for a sign but I was just excited to actually have work. I was to be hired as an ‘on call’ therapist, only coming in when there was an appointment and no therapist.

The owner of Spa Unrejuvinated (who was a not so nice lady and I, of course not having been hired by her, wouldn’t know this until later) calls me in for an hour long swedish massage. Yay! A client! I had been at the beach but lived near by so I quickly ran home and changed. I wore a black tshirt and black and white checked shorts with slippers (flip flops for those not into the Hawaiian lingo).

Side note: For those unfamiliar with the practices of massage, a therapist is supposed to meet the client and have them fill out their intake form. This form has current conditions, injuries, etc etc. It also gives the therapist an opportunity to get to know the client before going in for the hour long rub down.

(Continued story) I walk into Spa Unrejuvinated and there is the red headed, wild haired ((think Trelawney with red hair)) owner who I had not had the pleasure of meeting. She is dressed in a mou-mou and leaving a massage room with a large blanket. I quickly introduced myself and she informed me I was already late so the client was already on the table. Now, on a personal note, I don’t like to have clients on the table before I meet them because I like to adjust the height of the table according to the client’s size. She tells me the client is expecting an hour massage and “cannot be face down because he has very bad asthma.” Okay…… and? “And he was too warm in the blankets and flat sheet so I gave him a bath towel to use instead.”
RED FLAG #1 A client does not want to be draped.

So I nod and smile and head into the room. Lying on the table is a giant man with a stomach so big that the towel covering him is barely grazing the massage table itself. I confirm his condition and begin the massage. I start massaging what some would call a neck (and others would call the area between his head and shoulders). I do this in the beginning when I’m trying to think of my strategy for a longer massage with limited areas to work on. He requests that I work on his legs almost immediately. Since he was being draped by a mere bath towel, I didn’t bother moving the towel up  any since it barely covered half his thigh. I worked on his feet and shins and moved on to the quadriceps. He made a feeble attempt to move his legs a little further apart, but considering his size compared to that of the table, he didn’t get far. I asked if he was uncomfortable and he responded by asking me to work higher up on his leg. So I do. “A little higher, miss”.
RED FLAG #2 Can you work on my upper thigh?

I worked a little higher but it was not high enough apparently. He persisted and I refused. I informed him that there was a limit on how high up one’s leg I will massage. He stayed quiet for a while and I continued the same pattern onto his other leg. In the way patterns work, he kept up his pattern on the other leg as well. I again politely informed him that I do not work on upper thighs. He tried to tell me that he rides bicycles and needed that work done. I refused and he asked me to work on his stomach.
(Insert throw-up face here)
His STOMACH??? That giant pile of hardened lard could have made Santa look anorexic! The abdominal region is a touchy area for many people. As a newer therapist, there are only a few different ways to massage a stomach. For me, I only knew one. I rubbed his belly clockwise, to encourage digestion I suppose (but it was too late for this guy). The table was a bit higher than I liked it to be, so his stomach was about where my ribs are (mind you, I’m 5’2″).
As I’m trying to put my mind into a happy place in this slightly uncomfortable situation, I begin to notice his hands are fidgety. Apparently he was trying to push his towel down a little further and a little further more. I asked him to refrain from moving the towel (or removing it!) and he informed me I was missing his “lower abs” and to “please, concentrate a little HARDER on those.”
RED FLAG #3 Pushing draping down and asking for “low low stomach” massage.

I was starting to get a little heated and asked him what his intentions were? And there… out of the towel below the mountain-belly comes a little $100 bill. Of course its crumpled up.
Ew. This is not happening. I close my eyes and open and its still real. Okay, now I’m fed up. I inform the man that this spa was not a whore house and that I did not go through years (actually only 6 months) of massage school to be offered $100 to do “Extra” services.

“Well I’m from Reno. And in Reno, we can get a lot for a hundred bucks!”
“Well, SIR, this ain’t Reno!” I told him that if he wanted that crap he’d have to look in the back of the Weekly for those kinds of massages.

What a lousy first day at this spa! I didn’t want to make a bad impression though so I took a moment and calmed down. I informed the man that he had two options. I was going to leave the room and either he gets dressed and leaves after paying in full (that should have been the only option) or he can stay on the table and when I come back in, dont say another word.
I stepped out and grabbed a quick sip of water all while my new bosslady is asking me why I left the room. I told her what happened and she said ‘well theres only a few minutes left of the massage so go finish it.” in-con-thievable!
I stepped back in the room and he apologized. I informed him the deal was he could finish the massage if he shut up right? I put a towel over his eyes and worked on his neck again. With only 2 minutes left in the massage, he propositioned me again and I dropped his head on the table and left. I went to the back room shaking with anger. After he left the witch  bosslady came back and said “He must have really liked your massage because he left you a twenty-five dollar tip!!” I looked at her like she was crazy and told her about what happened. She shook her flaming hair and said what a shame.
I returned to the room and removed the sheets (using gloves) and found that crumpled up $100. I put it in a plastic bag (using gloves) and sprayed it down with Lysol. I took it to the bank and deposited it, warning the teller to use gloves when handling the money.

*PS I stayed with that company for almost a year. More stories to come on that*

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