The Whore of Mensa

A few weeks ago, just as this blog was getting started (I think it was after I wrote the “Philosophical Sex” post), I was referred to as “sort of a reverse whore of Mensa” (I was the reverse because in this blog, I was effectively “giving it away for free”). “The Whore of Mensa” is, of course, that wonderfully funny short story by Woody Allen, originally written for the New Yorker in 1974, and later published in his collection of short stories Without Feathers. It’s basically about a man being blackmailed by a decidedly less-than-traditional “escort” service.  These call girls, instead of their bodies and sex, sell their minds and intellects.

…Seconds later, a silky voice answered and I told her what was on my mind. ‘I understand you can help me set up an hour of good chat,’ I said.
‘Sure, honey. What do you have in mind?’
‘I’d like to discuss Melville.’‘
Moby Dick, or the shorter novels?’
‘What’s the difference?’
‘The price. That’s all. Symbolism’s extra.’
‘What’ll it run me?’
‘Fifty, maybe a hundred for Moby Dick. You want a comparative discussion — Melville and Hawthorne? That could be arranged for a hundred.’
‘The dough’s fine,’ I told her and gave her the number of a room at the Plaza.
‘You want a blond or a brunette?’
‘Surprise me,’ I said, and hung up…

You can read more here. I hadn’t read the story in years, and earlier today, remembering the conversation, I decided to look it up and I came across this video.  It’s a short version (more of a trailer, really), and the quality isn’t fantastic, but still worth a watch.

Now wouldn’t it be something if we really did, as a culture, value intellect and intelligence this much? A girl can dream…

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