“Madame, est-ce que—”
I can’t really pay attention to much of what else he’s saying because all I’ve heard is “Madame.” The word ringing in my ears like an endlessly reverberating alarm. And the way I’m dressed, I really don’t feel as though I look like a goddamn madame, unless he means “madam of a brothel.” But then, even “that sort of woman” is supposed to be “older.” I don’t see myself as being that way, so why does this infernal youth dare to bandy such a faux attempt at “politesse” ultimately designed to be backhanded? Sure, he’s a teenage boy, and maybe any woman who isn’t a “girl” appears “aged” to him. It’s all about “perspective,” one supposes. But I also supposed he should have thought twice about his approach if he genuinely wanted some kind of answer from me.
From what I could gather, he was trying to ask something about the bus. Did he not see how I was dressed? Long fur coat, expensive tights with the type of pattern and jeweled flourishes that clearly indicated they were expensive. That’s the thing about boys that’s even worse than men: their radar for details is nonexistent. He really wanted me to spell it out I guess: “Désolé, je ne prends pas l’autobus d’habitude.” I know that made me sound like a rich bitch cunt, but that’s kind of the effect I was going for. He didn’t seem to notice. He was only concerned with his own petty plight. Otherwise known as: “the average person’s” plight. Well, me, I wasn’t average. Never had been and never would be. I clawed my way through this life to make sure of that, and even being around someone so prosaic made my skin crawl. Who the fuck was he to call me, ugh, Madame? He should have been groveling at my feet begging for my sexual attention. Little boys. They don’t understand shit. Their taste so unrefined it’s a wonder he wasn’t walking on all fours like an ape as he chased after me. Fool! Thinking I would know about a bus schedule.
To be fair, in a town like this, everyone was supposed to rely on the bus sooner or later. But not me. I was only here visiting. Just as I was everywhere else. I was never meant to stay anywhere long-term. I was too fabulous for that. Too worldly. Too easily fucking bored by everyone and everyplace being the same at their core. So to distract myself from that very real fact, I lived on the kindness of strangers. To put it delicately. Alright, fine. I worked as a high-class hooker. Traveling the world (like Madame X) to where I was “needed” (requested—being so adept as I am in my “field”). It turned out to be more lucrative than I could have ever hoped for. With word of (my) mouth spreading fast throughout the upper echelons of gross, wealthy men.
I sort of “fell into” it. Or rather, fell onto a man’s dick at a party in Manhattan when I was too drunk to differentiate between any human figure. I thought this particular man was actually someone else—an ex of mine whose “zob” (as the French say) I had been missing. Though not any other qualities about him. Looking back, I don’t even know how I managed to get into that party. In that particular era of my life, I was not dressing very posh, so maybe the gatekeeper was just being nice. Could see I was hot regardless of what I was wearing. That I had “potential” to live in this gilded world, and not just visit it. So up I ascended. Only mildly tipsy upon arrival, the open bar secured my blackout mode as I sidled up to the rich man I thought was my ex. He really didn’t seem to mind all that much. Which is why I was further convinced it was, that’s right, my ex. But, of course, looking back, said ex never would have been at a party like that… and neither should I have been. The whole thing was a fluke. One that I was grateful to discover the following morning when I woke up—a.k.a. was shaken awake—by this man’s housekeeper. It was sort of like that scene in Sex and the City when Samantha is kicked out of Harvey’s bed by his maid, Sum, after he leaves. Except that I would never provide an offensive Carrie-esque voiceover about it like, “She wasn’t so dim, that Sum.” Instead, I took it in stride, assuming I would probably never hear from whoever the man was again. I couldn’t even remember what he looked like anyway.
But, lo and behold, he managed to contact me later that day. Such is the power of the rich. Privacy invasion, violation of ethics—whatever it takes to get what they want, including information. And here I thought my decrepit apartment in Chinatown wouldn’t even register on the map. Yet, it did. That’s how I received three dozen red roses (very cheesy, I know) at my ramshackle with a card that instructed me to call “Don” at such and such number. Naturally, when I did, it was answered by an assistant, who then “scheduled” me for dinner at Le Bernardin, which I felt was located in far too touristy of a location, but at least most Midwestern twats couldn’t afford to dine there. I would be “insulated.” From that dinner forward, as a matter of fact.
With Don’s connections and referrals, I became “sought after” without even trying. I was twenty years old at the time. It was easier then not to have to try at being “enchanting” to men. And, as a Capricorn, I was shrewd enough to start saving all the money they thought I was asking for, once again drawing a Sex and the City parallel in that, like Carrie that one night she spent with a Frenchman named Gilles, it was assumed I did this for “a living.” Rich men not being able to compute women as anything beyond just another object for purchase. In contrast to Carrie, however, I didn’t play at anything like having “morals.” I was eager to step up to what was, evidently, my destiny. Stepped so far up on all the cum I was generating that it got to a point where I didn’t even know what to do with all my money. Maybe that’s how I ended up spending it so profligately. Making bad investments here and putting down payments on a couple houses there. Only to end up with no housing at all in my current state.
Anyway, somehow or other, I ended up in France a decade later (not that I didn’t cross paths with the country many times in between). Servicing a man who lived in the type of small town where a teenage boy would stoop to calling me “madame.” I wanted to scream at him, “Madame is Mademoiselle Hot Bitch, in case you’re fucking blind!” Maybe I was feeling particularly self-conscious about the title, to boot. Because, unfortunately, the paying man in question had quickly lost interest in me. Like I said, it was much easier to be “enchanting” at twenty than it was at thirty. And I hadn’t even wanted to get back into this game, had only done it because I needed a quick fix of cash. It must have been obvious to the old bastard, who probably wanted a more “convincing performance” about what a “titan” he was in bed. Yeah right. Not even an Oscar winner could pretend to be “rocked” by that shriveled limp dick.
So basically, he kicked me out after a week and now here I am in bum-fuck nowhere. Funny how, no matter what country, bum-fuck nowhere always looks the same. Filled with townspeople that surely must be missing links as they gawk at you for daring to exhibit any fashion sense whatsoever. No matter what happened, though, I would not get on that fucking bus that the blind ageist prick was inquiring about. I would walk all the way to Paris if necessary. Where I would start over, yet again.