I can now admit it! I have no shame left. I signed on to do a stint as an adult phone actress!
I thought it would be a hoot. Heck, I thought it would be easy but this gal discovered that it was anything but easy. I thought it might prove funny but instead, it showed itself to be downright disgusting. I was in shock! Still am.
This is my personal account of what it is like to be an adult phone actress. Pay close attention and in between fits of giggles, try to understand that what I am saying is that even the most open-minded person can find themselves repelled by the hidden desires of what I’m sure are everyday people. There is also the false sense that you are in control of the call and the verbal content of the conversation but the reality is that you (the actress) are simply being used at the whim of the caller. Before the call ends, you just feel dirty.
So, I made the call to apply by phone and was sent my application package by mail. I filled everything out and sent it on back and was then called for my one hour orientation by phone where all the rules and regulations were explained in explicit detail.
I tried not to giggle during orientation when things were explained using words you would never expect to hear out of your employer’s mouth. There are actually many rules set up to protect the “phone actress”. Certain subjects are taboo during any conversation with a client. Think about anything considered illegal and punishable by law and you will get the idea of what cannot be discussed; under aged sex, pedophilia, bestiality etc. After that, anything goes. You get paid weekly and are paid by the actual amount of minutes you are on the phone with a client. The pay range is different for every company but generally you are paid somewhere between $0.20 to $0.28 cents per minute. The more minutes you’re on actual calls, the more money you make. The question you end up asking yourself is “How much of this can I stomach a day?”
You use an alias (sometimes several aliases in one night that were previously assigned to you) and you never give personal information about yourself. It is indeed, acting. You make up a persona based on the request made by the caller and then you chat your way through. It almost always starts out with about two minutes of small talk before the caller gets down and dirty. In one night, I was eighteen, Asian, Black and a Dominatrix. I was astonished. I just couldn’t believe people actually called to have these types of conversations.
I also discovered something about myself during the first few hours into this little stint; I have boundaries! I never have thought of myself as a prude by any stretch of the imagination but apparently there are freakishly freaky people out there who make me look like Mother Theresa! (Yes, there are freaks who request Nuns also).
And did I mention you can’t refuse a call based on pure disgust over what they are requesting? Once you’re logged in, you just take the calls sent to you. Not being able to say no and pick and choose my calls was my downfall from Phone “Actress” Superstardom! After being complimented by the monitoring help desk (all calls are recorded and monitored) for giving a particularly outstanding thirty-eight minute verbal performance where I nearly hyperventilated, (worthy of an Oscar, I was told), I received a call that turned my stomach and did me in!
A woman called giving a man’s name. Now, for the record, I’m strictly hetero, so when I get a call telling me it’s a dude who sounds suspiciously like a chick, I am already reeling thinking, “God, what will I say?”. Then, the bombshell; He/She was looking for …drum roll please…a double amputee above the knee who is toothless and smokes Virginia Slims! I kid you not. There are truly some stranger than fiction folks in the world. It was the call that caused me to log out of the phone system and never return. Since I was already having difficulty forcing myself to get on the phone again after the first time, this was not a hard decision. I lasted exactly three days!
So I guess there will be no starring role in “Pretty Woman II-Phone Goddess” for me. It was quite the learning experience and I can tell you, one I will never forget. It was eye opening because I thought to myself, “This felt disgusting over the phone. How in the world can anyone do something like this for real; in person?” And just like a pimp, the company makes far more money on your work than you do.
It’s not a “get rich quick” scheme nor is it easily tolerable as a part-time job if you have any self respect. I discovered that what I thought would be easy or even funny left me feeling hesitant and even queasy at the thought of logging back into that phone system.
The good news is that my cats will not look at me funny any more trying to figure out what the heck is that noise? Also, I can laugh about it, secure in the knowledge that I do not have to do something like that for a living and I am not the least bit embarrassed to say that I quit. That’s right. I did not finish what I started and I’m okay with that. This will remain a funny tale to share with friends over drinks and appetizers. The legend (that’s me) continues on to live and “chat” another day. Until then, Vaya con Dios mis amigos.