Monday, May 27, 2013

When Olympians Become Escorts

I started writing this piece in December, and somehow it got shelved until now, lost in the shuffle of drafts, Life, work, music, and a health scare. But it's the type of story that makes the news worth reading, that awesome books and shitty made-for-TV movies are made of: an Olympian athlete who even ran for the gold medal, rich, beautiful, part-time motivational speaker and full-time mother led a secret life for a full year in which she was a high-class escort, servicing men for $600 an hour in New York, Las Vegas, Chicago and Houston.

Not because she was in deep financial trouble - she did it by choice. For fun.
“Well, after my first date, I was hooked, and have been doing my best to visit Las Vegas as often as my schedule allows (I run my own business in my real world life).”
From the article:
(Suzy) Favor Hamilton described the escort business as “exciting,” an illicit midlife diversion from her routine existence, one in which she operates a successful Madison, Wisconsin real estate brokerage with her husband, delivers motivational speeches, and does promotional work for various businesses and groups, including Disney’s running series and Wisconsin’s Potato & Vegetable Growers Association. She said that only her husband Mark, 44, was aware of her escort work, but that, “He tried, he tried to get me to stop. He wasn’t supportive of this at all.”
While most clients knew her by the name ''Kelly'', she admitted her true identity to some of them:
 Favor Hamilton answered that as a world-class athlete she was conditioned to believe she was invincible, and that doubts and concerns were counterproductive thoughts. During a subsequent conversation she brought up Tiger Woods’s tumultuous fall, saying that, “I mean, he’s the biggest athlete ever. He obviously thought he could never get caught.”
 As a runner, you may have seen her look like this:

As an escort, though, her profile page had her looking like this:

I guess she had a thing for stretching. And spreading her legs - no pun intended.

Customers who were interested could schedule a ''date'' right on her webpage:

Hard to imagine after seeing this that her collegiate career at the University of Wisconsin was so dominating (she is the most decorated female athlete in NCAA track and field history) that the Big Ten Conference’s female athlete of the year award was named after her. Although Americans are so prude, that could change sooner than we think.

She has appeared in national ads for Reebok, Clairol, Oakley, and Pert Plus and released a swimsuit calendar.

Here is an ad she did for Nike:

Sex and Life intertwine. It's a discussion worth having as a society, opening our boundaries and minds, broadening our horizons and definitions. It's funny that in another story I haven't published yet, I explore sexuality in the Olympic Village. I'll try to have it done with soon, as a kind of follow-up to this one. Apparently, the place/neighbourhood where athletes reside during the Games end up being orgies - just like the Greeks intended. Hot, healthy people in their physical prime, drunk from victory or from defeat, locked in a ghetto and knowing whatever happens there has to stay there because once they leave, they go back to their 'normal' lives in their respective countries, and may never see each other again anyway, leading to some taking full advantage of the situation. And possibly creating habits and patterns and a sense of entitlement and egotistical satisfaction they get hooked on. But I digress, that story's for another day.

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