The man smelled ever so slightly of cigarettes. Not the old rancid smell of smoke in unwashed clothes, but the fresh aroma of recently smoked tobacco.
It reminded me of my father.
When he touched the backs of my arms I recalled when Nancy said that you should never touch that part of a woman’s arm because she felt the most vulnerable there. It reminded me of a recent conversation about high heeled shoes and whether or not a woman should be required to wear them to work. And make up. And general body self loathing and I thought of a statistic I read about how eighty percent of women worry about how they look during sex. DURING SEX. And I thought about how sad that is how sad that we are tethered to these impressions and these paradigms of self hate even when we are supposed to be feeling free and loved.
My throat was wedged a little bit uncomfortably in the face holder of the massage chair as the masseur pressed down onto my shoulder. First the right side and then the left side, his hands pressed into my flesh and I endured the uncomfortable pressure on my throat as he kneaded the vertebrates in my neck and
I thought about how easy it world be for him to paralyze me for life. My life in the hands of a complete stranger. One who smelled like my father’s Camel cigarettes and who exerted life changing pressure onto my neck. As he pulled my left arm behind me and rotated my recently injured painful arm to the back I worried that it would re-injure me but I would not stop him, because until it felt bad it felt good.