Friday, January 20, 2012

My Massage: Part One

by Dan Cunneen

(A slightly different version of this story appeared in "Bourbondandy" a literary magazine published by Russell Scheidelman.

When I moved to West Seattle several years ago one of the first things I did after settling in was try to find a good hair stylist. I started my quest at a salon near my house called King Kuts. After just one king cut, I never returned. I can't really explain why I never went back. Maybe it’s because they spelled "cuts" with a “K”. I tried another shop nearby that was run by a young Vietnamese-American woman. I went to her for several haircuts, but I stopped because she talked to me constantly about her "slutty" best friend and her drunken husband. Plus, she was always pestering me to put blonde highlights in my hair. I couldn't take it anymore, so I decided to check out a The Vin Hair Salon.

The Vin Hair Salon is near two adult bookstores in the old commercial district of White Center, which is an unincorporated part of King county just south of Seattle. White Center is littered with such adult businesses along with taverns, Vietnamese bakeries and taquerias. You can walk down the main drag at any time while the sun is up and find crimson-faced drunks stumbling to or from their favorite watering hole. (In fact, one of the bars in White Center has a happy hour that starts at 9:00 am.) I have seen prostitutes plying their trade in broad daylight without any compunction. It has gotten better over the years, but if you're thinking about a leisurely stroll in downtown White Center after dark, I would seriously reconsider. That being said, I have come to regard White Center as my home.

I walked in to the Vin salon and came face to face with the proprietor; a very busty, tall and attractive Vietnamese woman who appeared to be about 40 years old. She was quite striking in her skin-tight jeans and low cut t-shirt (that barely contained the abundant breasts that spilled out). When she introduced herself as Tina, I also noticed that her English wasn't very good. Perfect! At least she wouldn't be talking my ear off about her personal life.

Tina did a good job on my hair, her prices were cheap and I liked the atmosphere at the Vin Salon. Another thing I liked was the shampoo, which was really more of a head massage with a shampoo thrown in. Tina always spent several minutes massaging my head after the final rinse and then she gently wiped the water from my face with her hands. It was very nice.

After about my fifth haircut, she mentioned that the salon offered massages. I had gone to Tina for several haircuts and each time I was there I sensed a vague sexually charged atmosphere at the Vin Hair Salon.

Now I knew why.

"Really? How much are they?" I said.

"$40 for one hour, you call first, make appointment".

"I just might take you up on that."

$40 for an hour seemed cheap. That was about half the price of a typical massage. On my way out I took a card with the salon's phone number.

I have had massages before. Years ago I had a little back trouble that was affecting my golf game. First, I went to a chiropractor, but she was no help. When I noticed that massage therapy was covered in the insurance plan at my work, I made an appointment. The woman who worked on me was very hairy and clinical, but she did the trick. My back felt much better after several sessions.

I mulled the Vin Salon massage over for a few days and I finally decided to go for it when I had a rare weekday off with no plans. When I called to make an appointment, Tina answered and told me she had an opening for that day at 2:00 pm (In retrospect, that wasn't too surprising). I was excited and also a little bit nervous.

I walked into the salon and saw Tina standing near the doorway wearing her typical provocative attire. After we exchanged pleasantries, she immediately led me to a door in back of the salon. She opened it, motioned me inside the room and walked over to the thermostat to turn the heat on. An old gas heater rattled to life in the corner.

"It cold in here, you cold?" she said

"Uh, a little thanks." I stammered.

She told me to take off my clothes and pointed to a towel that was on a chair. I nodded and she left the room.

The small room was dark. It had no windows and was lit by a single light fixture on the ceiling. On the walls were various promotional posters for hair products with smiling Asian models. To my left in the corner there was a small sink with a mop bucket and bottles of floor wax and cleaners piled next to it. To my right was a free standing cheap plastic screen that was about 5 feet high. It was there, behind the screen, where the massage table waited for me. I took off my clothes and quickly grabbed the towel and wrapped it around my naked body. The cement floor felt very cold on my bare feet as I walked to the massage table.

I climbed up on the table, laid on my stomach and waited. As I lay there I was treated to the comforting sounds of Vietnamese music. In the distance I could also hear the annoying din of an Asian soap opera that was playing in the salon. Many thoughts were going through my head as I waited there. Who would massage me? (I knew it wouldn't be Tina - she had to cut hair.) What would I do if became aroused? Most importantly, would there be a "happy ending"?

Finally after a few minutes, the door opened and my masseuse appeared. She was a Vietnamese woman that looked to be in her late twenties. She wore a tight pair of black polyester slacks that clung to her well-formed rear end. She also wore a black blouse with large white lilies printed on it. On her feet was a pair or sandals with no socks. Her black hair was long, hanging down past her shoulders. She was a very attractive.

She came over to the table, sat at my side and started rubbing my head.

"What your name?" she asked.

"Dan," I mumbled back. "What's yours?"

"My name Heelan," she replied.

"Excuse me, what was that?

"Helen," I think she said.

"Helen, nice to meet you, Helen."

As we "talked," Helen was still gently rubbing my head. She worked her way down to my neck and shoulders and casually continued to massage me for a few minutes.

Suddenly Helen kicked off her sandals to the floor and proceeded to climb up on the table and straddle my back. She started rubbing my shoulders with vigor, while her crotch was inches from my lower back. (I knew this wasn't going to be like the massage I received from the mustachioed masseuse at the medical office.)

After a few more minutes of massaging, she scooted down slightly and sat right down on me while she worked away. I could feel her cloth-covered crotch resting directly on the back of my thigh. When I made the appointment for this massage I figured it would be different than my therapeutic massage, but I didn't expect to be ridden like a horse.

She worked her way down my back and stopped before reaching my buttocks. She got down from the table and started to work on my legs. As she labored, she paused for a moment to lift the terry wrap up, exposing the lower part of my butt cheeks. The rush of cold air I felt told me that my private parts were private no more.

As I lay there on my stomach, Helen worked her way up my left leg. As she got closer to my to my crotch, I felt her fingers lightly brush against my left testicle. It was for just a second, but I distinctly felt it. She switched to my other leg and did the same think again, this time brushing against my right testicle. (Unlike Hitler, I have two – testicles.)

While she was massaging me I was completely silent. The music was still playing and mercifully Tina had turned off the soap opera in the other room, but I didn't make a sound.

Suddenly the silence was broken.

"You okay?" Helen asked.

"Yeah, it feels great, thank you." I stammered.

Helen climbed back up on the massage table and straddled the back of my knees. She adjusted the terry-cloth wrap so it covered my rear completely and started massaging my buttocks through the cloth in a firm - yet gentle manner. (The masseuse at the medical office didn't touch my ass.) I chuckled to myself when I realized I was paying a stranger $40 bucks to knead my ass.

After Helen was done with that phase, she climbed back down off the table and stood next to me. She started to a light pounding motion on my back with her closed fists. This lasted for several more minutes. (Although she wasn't hitting very hard at all, I didn't really like this particular technique. I was glad when she walked around near my head and started to rub my neck and head again.)

She motioned for me to turn over on my back and I willingly obliged. As I did so the terry wrap fell open and my boyhood became fully exposed to her. I didn't really care at this point because I felt we had forged a kind of intimate bond after the previous 30 minutes. I just nonchalantly covered my groin with the cloth and lay on my back on the table.

After I settled in, Helen continued to massage my head, paying close attention to my temples. Then she worked her way down to my chest and rubbed it for a minute or so. Next she walked down to the other end of the table and started to do the pounding technique on the top of my thighs. She worked her way up my right thigh, continuing the pounding as she progressed. When she was got close to my hipbone, she softly struck my penis directly with her closed fist. I was surprised, but I didn't move.

Why did she accidentally hit my procreation station? Was it a mistake? Was she checking to see if my penis was erect? (It wasn't – yet.)

Helen stopped the thigh thumping and started to massage my left arm and fingers for a bit, and then she walked around the table and did the same to my right arm. She had me turn over again and she started to massage my back as she stood on the floor next to me. This time she did a sort of "butterfly" motion with her fingers that started at the base of my spine and continued up my back to my neck. Then she suddenly stopped.

I glanced at my watch and it had been 55 minutes. The time had flown by.

Helen left the room and I assumed that was my cue to get dressed. I jumped down off the table and quickly put my clothes back on. I felt a little foggy when I walked out the door into the main salon. Tina was at the cash register smiling and waiting for her money. I paid Tina the $40 dollars and turned to Helen. She was sitting along the wall in one of the chairs customers use while waiting for a haircut. She was smiling too. I was sure I was supposed to tip, but I wasn't sure how much. I clumsily handed Helen $15. She smiled and said thank you and I headed for the door.

As I wandered out into the late afternoon sun, there was one question bouncing around in my head: If I had been aroused would she have offered me "full release"? The reality probably was that she had no intention of touching me in a sexual manner at all. It was just a massage. Still, I wasn't sure. There was only one way to find out and that was to go back.

(There is a second part to this story, but due to it's graphic nature, I've been advised not to post it.)

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