The Mechanic’s Terminology

A friend of mine put a tiny dent into my car back on a popular summer holiday. He sent me to a mechanic friend of his to get it fixed. This mechanic was a big Italian (possibly) New York kinda guy. *You know… the giant gold cross necklace with fat fingers and creeping eyes* While waiting for a response from my friend on whether to go through with the $500 charge (obviously a rip off) the man and I were talking. He had seen my massage table and asked if that’s what I do. Instead of lying, I said ‘yea. I do outcalls.’ He said he could give me a bigger discount on the car if I gave him a  massage. I’m open to barter and trades so I said ‘Sure. Give me a call.’ Clearly, it had been before 10am since I gave him my card (aka I wasn’t awake yet). I also may have been thinking, “By the time this guy calls, I’ll be out of the country.” My friend ended up not wanting to pay $500 to fix a dent smaller than my fist (duh) so I left.

A few days ago I got a call from The Mechanic. He goes on about how his back hurts from his job and how Massage Envy doesn’t provide the massages he wants when he wants it and how he’s stressed and needs some stress relief. *BING* Flag  is up. Stress relief can mean two very different things in the massage world. It could mean ‘I have a lot of stress and I’d like to relax please’ or ‘I have a very specific location that I hold stress particularly south of my stomach and north of my thighs’. For some reason though (maybe the previously mentioned creeping eyes) stress relief sounded not quite right. But because it wasn’t blatant I had to keep going with my intake. I asked what time length he was looking for… 30? 60? 90? He responded with ‘Wow. Yea 90 minutes would be great.’ I said ‘ok! Just so you know, a 90 minute massage will cost $100’ and he responds with ‘Yea $100. $200. Whatever’ (((((???? okayyyyyy….))))) *BING* Flag turns orange – something doesn’t seem right with $100, $200, whatever.
My warning flag’s color change prompted me to explain what areas of the body I work on in a 90 minute massage. He said ‘yea uh huh okay’ a few times and responded with ‘Well is there any other therapeutic extras you offer? You know for stress relief?’ *Bing Bing Bing* Warning Warning. My flag is now red. Code red. Hooker nail polish red. ‘I usually offer hot stone massage or aromatherapy, sir. But those upgrades are currently unavailable’. “ookay” says he.

Therapeutic meaning therapy. Meaning something maybe out of balance or injured and needs repairing. In this case, The Mechanic used an excellent term to refer to an inappropriate action. Sneaky… but I’m smarter than that, douche.

I proceeded anyway (again, not quite post-coffee time). “May I have an address where the massage will take place?” ‘Uh.. I’m at a friend’s house so I’ll text it to you.’ “Okay, can you give me a general area so I know how to calculate the gas cost please?’ He tells me that part of town. “I’ll see you at 4:30, Mechanic?” ‘Yea. 4 sounds great. See you then. But call before, I want to make sure I’m awake and ready for you.’

He sends me a text with the address and, go figure, the address does not exist. The zip code is correct but the street (in all various blvds, st, rd, pl, ave, etc) does not exist. After my coffee and the review of the alarms ringing and flags waving in my face I realized I needed to cancel that massage. So I called to no answer. To no voicemail. I would think that a businessman would have a voicemail. Or anyone that has a cell phone ever. So I did the most unprofessional thing I could think of… I cancelled via text. My responses were ‘bbbkffpprrr. z. fjklf’ followed by ‘message right.’ followed by ‘flkjrjrrbkfflazzzz’ and again ‘too late’. I had a voicemail with no missed call that was 3 minutes of nothingness. Sorry Mr. Mechanic. But not really.

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.

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