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The Happy Hooker: My Own Storyby Xaviera Hollander and Robin Moore and Yvonne Dunleavy
Chapter One — Rubber Souls
Almost from the moment we were herded into the crowded cattle pen of a prison cell in New York's infamous Tombs, the jail-toughened black hookers gave us nothing but misery.
Hey, bigshit madambitch, bet you ain't got no black cunt turnin' tricks in your high-class fuckin' house!
Yeah, bet your midget-dick rich white johns can't buy no licorice from your candy store!
This queen bee of the hookers here, she afraid the black stuff gonna rub off all over her beeyootiful white sheets, ain't ya, honey?
The hassling began bawdy, became ugly, then menacing.
You there in the red-white-and-blue Saks fuckin' Fifth Avenue dress: Don't bend forward so far, otherwise ah'm gonna tear it off and eat you up!
Five minutes more and there could be a bloodbath, with us sure as hell the losers. There were seven of us, twenty of them, and common contempt of these street hookers for us, the expensive call girls, united them. In the hooker hierarchy, we were the aristocrats, they were the serfs, and jail, by God, was the great leveler.
I stood with my girls huddled tightly together against the cell bars, putting as much distance as possible between us and the black streetwalkers. Even if we wanted to sit down among the others, we had no chance. Those that had places on the few uncomfortable benches hung jealously on to them. If anyone got up for a drink of water or a pee, a fast ass would cancel the space. Some girls, exhausted from a night's sidewalk cruising, lay on the concrete floor, their heads in someone else's lap. They slept despite the anguished sounds of junkies in neighboring cells coughing, retching, and howling for relief. The stench of vomit, urine, and stale human body odor was suffocating. The ranks oozed and abated like an oil slick as one group of girls, summoned by the big bull-dyke matron, was led to the courtroom and replaced with another.
Get over here, judge gonna see ya now.
Each new paddy wagon full of hookers fell in with the catcalling. Hey, muthafuckin' madam, can you tell us now why you don't have a little color in your high-class establishment? a vicious-looking hooker in a neon-orange wig said menacingly.
Caution on my part gave way to exasperation, then anger. Listen, I said, I want you to know I do have black girls working for me. Several of them...I even have a black roommate. There she is over there. I pointed to Aurora, a willowy light-skinned girl who was sitting apart from us. A prostitute since her teens, and the veteran of many arrests, the same experience that taught her how to grab a seat for herself also taught her to assume a low profile in this kind of a scene. Aurora sat in a corner, wearing a blond wig and dark glasses, her collar pulled high under her chin, trying to blend in with the walls. She squirmed as twenty pairs of eyes riveted on her. The hookers stopped teasing their wigs and painting their nails with varnish that had mysteriously appeared despite all the handbags having been confiscated outside.
Sheeyit, man, a mean-looking coal-black girl finally rasped, that mixed rat ain't black, she half-white.
The scumbag dunno what the fuck she is, a girl with the face of a sepia madonna and the voice of a carnival barker said. Both she and her friend left their seats to walk toward Aurora for a better look and maybe take a swing at her. All of us were watching them. This had to be the moment of detonation. Just then the cell gate cranked open, and the big black matron escorted in a fat white girl who was hobbling on crutches. The girl was all marked up with ulcers on her arms and legs and seemed to be dope-crazed. As the matron, in a kindly way, tried to ease her into one of the vacant seats, the girl yelled, Take ya hands off me, ya big black dyke! and hauled off, her crutch savagely ripping across the matron's head. That was all we needed in this charged atmosphere, a racial explosion touched off by the handicapped whore. Girls started screaming and yelling; fists, arms, legs, and the crutches flew all over the place. My girls and I quickly moved for cover behind the urinal wall and waited to see what would happen next. Three hefty matrons marched into the cell and efficiently subdued the hysterical white girl. What would happen next? Thank God we didn't have to hang around to find out.
Get over here, you girls behind the wall over there. Judge gonna see ya now.
The cattle were led to the courtroom. Inside the courtroom, full of journalists, quick-sketch artists, and curious onlookers, were my houseguests of the night before. The nice john from the Midwest I called Calvin was probably going to lose his job and marriage because his name and position had been blasted all over the New York papers. There was my sweet Greek lover, Takis, and beside him the couple whose only concession to convention was their last name. Otherwise they lived a life of free love and had been swinging with Takis and me in my house, for love, not money, only minutes before the cops arrived.
The judge listened with what seemed to me obvious hostility as the charges against us were read. One by one I paid the bail for my girls from the envelope of money I had stuffed into my panties before accompanying the cops to the station house. But the one person I wanted in the courtroom wasn't there: my boyfriend, Larry. I hadn't been able to contact him, and he had the key to the safe-deposit box where my...
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