One of the bigger stories the past few days was the news that New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft had been caught on video at a West Palm Beach day spa with a prostitute that wasn’t a legal resident of the United States.
In the words of comedian Judy Tenuta, it could happen. Heck, it’s even possible (somewhat) that Kraft might not have known the sex worker in question was an illegal alien. Not likely, but possible.
This brings to mind my own little spa story – and, unfortunately for me, my 20-something naivete.
Sometime in the 1990s when I was working at the Sun Radio Network in St. Pete, I would have access to the Tampa Tribune – a newspaper no longer around that always played second fiddle to the then St. Petersburg Times, now the Tampa Bay Times. I’d always read the Tribune’s sports page, which had an ad for something called a “hot tub spa” over in north Tampa. Sounded like a plan to me, so I went and had a glance on one Monday evening when I was off from work.
The building was nondescript (which could have been my first red flag), one of those places that seemed to fit with the other stores and shops within it. I wasn’t totally naive – I figured some nudity amongst the women there would be included, but how it exactly worked was a mystery. I figured you sit in a hot tub and the girls get in bikinis, and for a higher rate of payment lose parts or all of same.
The hot tubs in question were all a front for – you guessed it – prostitution. I paid for this thin blonde young woman (who was definitely American) to get naked, as did I, but within a few minutes, I got nervous and aborted the rest of my “mission” so to speak. It’s not like I was a well-known figure in the local radio scene – but I couldn’t help but think that if I got busted here, that may change and not for the better. With the thin build the young woman had – could she have been underage? Did I have a Traci Lords situation on my hands?
The moral of the story, if there is one – it probably doesn’t hurt to ask around if you have the urge to go to one of these places. It might save you some trouble – luckily for me, my “urge” came long before trafficking and sex trafficking became an issue. Nowadays, you don’t know what you’d get at a place like that, and it’s not like they would tell you.