Losing a Hookie award in the year of Rentboy’s untimely death can make one feel like the member of a suicide cult who made it to the end of the jumper’s line – and then couldn’t jump. All reasons aside, the result is the same. You’re left behind and empty-handed. Is a trophy really all it would’ve taken to fix you, anyway? Imagine having jumped only to land in front of Heaven’s so-called gate, just to find it triple-locked, replete with signs reading, TRESPASSERS WILL BE PROSTITUTED? (Or, at least that’s how it read in the New York City street-light outside The Out Hotel where you stood after the wing-ding had passed and you’d lost – twice.)
What do you do? Do you pace around the proverbial precipice, shaking your fist at the sky, indignant, wondering where did I go wrong? Do you question your chosen field of specialty? Nobody ever says I wanna be a homophobe in gay porn when I grow up. Do you convince yourself that some people wouldn’t recognize your talent if you walked up and slapped them in the face with your dick and called them derogatory names regarding their sexual preference – all stemming from an internalized homophobia that you’d spent years cultivating just for this moment?
Sure. All of these things, you do. You do them and you relish every second of the thirty you spend on them. Following that, you say “fuck it,” grab the nearest (okay, only) colleague who doesn’t mind being seen with you despite the homo-social implications of tramping around town with the gay porn industry’s one-and-only boastful homophobe (in my case it was Rusty McMann) and together you treat yourselves to a late-night, post-award show Chinese dinner in the Big Apple that exceeds the daily caloric limit for anyone in porn by about ten miles of pan-fried noodles. This oral-consumption of the underdog’s unresolved feelings is almost acceptable, provided you’re both fresh Hookie-losers who openly despise working-out in an industry chock-full of sex-worker gym rats who stay high on steroids, among other things they’d rather not talk about. Almost acceptable, but not quite. So you eat-your-feelings while their heads are turned; everyone knows pleasures are only guilty when they’re taken in private.
Yes. An MSG overdose at a Chinese hole-in-the-wall, somewhere on West 42nd, between 10th and 11th Avenue is the least you can treat yourself to after a two-thousand mile drive you took into a night that passed like a twelve year old’s abortion in a back alley clinic, only to arrive at a wintertime bacchanalian, stuffed to the gills with security guards, doormen, hangmen, foot-soldiers and footmen, drag-queen award-game show hosts and other Hookie nominees that you’d probably never compete with again. I like to call them, Fishies.
That’s two-thousand miles and some change with the top down (it sounded like a really good idea at the time…) that led you smack-dab into a head-cold that didn’t help you not look like Rudolph on the Red Carpet in snapshots from that night. The snapshots that were published, that is.
My stumble on the red carpet was mysteriously lost on its way to Rentboy’s YouTube channel, unlike everyone else’s graceful meanderings under the LCD spotlight, which, I might add, are still live and online for your viewing pleasure today. I assume my taped appearances from Hookie night ended up in the same place as the footage from Hustlaball Las Vegas, another notorious 2015 Rentboy event I had attended just months prior that should have taught me to show-up suicide-ready to any and all future engagements of its like – including this one, an e-vite to play Hookie, extended with all the sincerity of Carrie’s prom invitation, which at least arrived, unlike the honorable mention by Jack Manly who congratulated every Fishie but yours truly on Twitter the day the nominations were announced.
Until then I had played Rentboy’s dark horse without complaint. As it turned out, two-thousand miles changed nothing and gained me even less, save a couple of winks from Rentboy Director Sean Van Sant that never led to a single kiss before the Department of Homeland Security took down the entire staff at Rentboy Headquarters in a bizarre case of mistaken identity while investigating what they believed to be an ISIS think tank in the same building – or at least that’s what I heard.
Inaccurate or not, Rentboy’s fate would have been the same: The DHS would cart Rentboy’s employees, the contents of their desks, filing drawers and everything else not nailed down, into Federal custody pending investigation, taking any chance I had of winning one of the agency’s famous, coveted awards with them – not to mention the kibosh it put on the vanity fair interview I’d all but paid for not long before their tragic demise.
My vanity fair interview…
A few weeks prior to the bust, I called up my good associate at Rentboy. I called him up to talk business. I was in Vegas, working as a rentman who specialized in adult services you couldn’t get anywhere else. Every successful rentboy on Rentboy had their niche. To quote The Daily News, “The escort profiles list “primary interests” including fetishes like “spanking,” “S&M,” and “role playing” as a policeman, priest, football coach or cheerleader, according to the complaint.” I can only hope they were talking about me. I don’t mind telling you that I searched Rentboy over to find an ad similar to mine and naturally, nothing compared. Anyway, copper fantasies have been rampant among gays since Dorothy took fabulous flight o’er the rainbow. I just took the whole policeman jumping from a cake number to the next level, making him dominant, verbal and boastfully homophobic, thus marking myself the object of every self-hating homosexual’s lust, complete with CB radio, handcuffs, and a shield badge. Because it was only a five hour drive to Los Angeles (four that pass for three when you drive there in a Z4M Roadster with a custom sound system, a bag of good hydro, a lead-heavy foot and a what-the-hell-glow surrounding you) I pulled engagement-limited gigs in my hometown on a very irregular basis, the footprint for which Rentboy valued at about $600.00* per month for advertising space – the sum of which went directly into their bank account, and, eventually, into Federal evidence. I thought I deserved at least thirty seconds in the sun for the price.
*Values are based on research analysis re: how much time the average porn fan spends reading an article written about an adult-entertainer, despite popular belief among adult entertainers themselves – the citing blog (hopefully) notwithstanding.
From the gate, my relationship with Rentboy, was friendly but distant and, on occasion, seemingly tenuous. I’d been an advertiser for four years, over which time I had limited contact with the Rentboy staff and no contact at all with Rentboy himself. (Legend has it, no one has ever seen Rentboy and Conner Habib in the same place at the same time – but that’s neither here nor there.) The bottom line was they let me advertise Rape as a service in my escort ad and this earned them an A in my book. Plus, I’d just been banned by those cocksuckers at Men4RentNow from advertising on their site without any cause or warning. Well, there may have been cause, but I’ll never know what it was because they wouldn’t even speak to me. I suspect it was because I tried listing Rape as a service in my escort ad. I still remember their last remarks to me: “You are never welcome to advertise on our site. Ev-er! We have refunded your payment for our Gold Membership.” Ok, so there probably wasn’t a hyphen in “ever” but it was signed without regard and dismissed with obvious prejudice, “Love, Men4RentNow.” (Reader, you just know M4RN was whacking off under his desk the whole time, thinking, “Rape? Oh yeah! Fuck me up, Miles. Rape my fuckin ass. That’s right! Fuckin’ use me, Miles. Do it to me, Officer Previtire,” right before sending me one final email from his bedroom office in “WeHo”. Or maybe it it was right after. No one’s ever actually seen him either, but I guarantee you he mispronounced Previtire.)
Anyway, it was only after the Rentboy Talk fiasco – which we’re getting to, Reader, I promise – that I called him up, my good associate at Rentboy, to talk business. This was just weeks after The Hookies. Everything had sunk in. I’d had time to mull over being back-burnered. (Back-burned??) We breezed through the niceties before it came time to start asking him the real shit. Boy, was I nervous! To make things worse, I was irritated. Irritated for having to bring it up. Irritated by their inattention. Irritated that I was irritated. These gripes had been on my mind for some time now, but I’d just refrained from mentioning them out of fear. I mean, how do I know that Rentboy and M4RN don’t have lunch together? That they don’t exchange notes? And they way they both avoid me in public? As if had the stench of failure and neither of them wanted to catch it?? I shuddered to think what they said about me in private.
So, that day on the phone, I asked him the real shit, like: “Is Rentboy aware of the potential lost revenue that results from putting all of his eggs in one basket, in other words, limiting all major coverage to only a handful of advertisers, namely those in close proximity to Rentboy’s home in New York, Rentboy Headquarters? I ask this as a four-year long advertiser. Rentboy has rentboys in every major city, the world over, yet he is seemingly fixated on only a handful of us. I just wonder, does Rentboy realize how frequently Boomer Banks is crowned Rentboy of the Day, and if so, does Rentboy have a strategy behind making Boomer Banks one of rentboy.com’s core products? I mean, off the record, man, just between us, does Boomer really have to be Rentboy of the Day – every day? Surely, he can’t be Rentboy of the Day every single day! I get it – the whole “Sartor slash Escort Extraordinaire” bit. I even read the HuffPost article and everything like that. But when you have boys in every major city..! Doesn’t Boomer need days for other things? Like, sewing or alterations or escorting, even? I mean, when does Boomer get to be Boomer? Not the Boomer you and I see on rentboy.com every single day, but… well, the real Boomer? Oh! and about this new segment on the site, Love What You Do, which, by the way, sounds like a show on Lifetime… I really hope you didn’t title that segment and if you did… well, it seems like Rentboy has featured every one of his advertisers in Love What You Do except for me. Or, at least, I’m telling you, that’s what it seems like.”
“I don’t think we’ve featured every-”
“But, here’s what I know. I clock into work every day-”
“You sign-in online…”
“- and every day once I’ve clocked-in, I get to read a piece about an escort who loves what they do and it isn’t me. Ever. How am I different? Can you tell me that? What keeps me from these opportunities? Really, now? I’m starting to get a complex, here.”
“Well, Miles, you’re not exactly quotable,” he laughed.
My gratitude for his candor felt like gratitude for an knee to the nut sack. I wanted to say, “Rentboy runs an advertising site for escort services. They host ads for guys that sell sex to men for money. Nobody buys the whole bit about all monies exchanged are for ‘time only.’ You’re telling me Rentboy thinks I’m un-quotable? Fucking put Rentboy on the phone! Now!”
Instead I said:
“But the questions in Love What You Do are always the same. You could ask them and I could answer. Piece of cake.”
“Listen, Miles. Love What You Do is a segment that focuses on gay escorts who love their work. You despise having to work with other men and you’re verbal about it and that’s great. I get it. You know I get it and I think you’re great, Miles. But, you don’t exactly fit the image we’re spotlighting here. Not in Love What You Do, anyway. You gotta know that.”
It was then I realized they didn’t get me at all. It didn’t matter that they let me advertise Rape in my ad. There was no way they were ever going to count me in their reindeer games. Not a hetero with a degree in Philosophy who chose a career in sex-work with men out of desperation.
“Look, why don’t you let me talk to Sean? I’ll ask him if we can do a feature just on you by yourself.”
Looking back, I should have been offended. Instead, I simply asked in wonder, “Just on me?”
“Yeah, Miles. Just on you.”
“You mean, solely and intellectually, a piece just on me?”
“Well, yeah, Miles. I- I guess that’s what I mean. A piece just on you.”
And just like that, I was home. I believed again. In Rentboy. In the man behind the mask. I couldn’t wait for my world to change.
I was right in the middle of scheduling the photo shoot that would accompany the “just on me” piece when I got news of the Rentboy take-down. Seemed excessive, even at the time. I mean, sure, Van Sant may have been a tyrant by general opinion. No doubt he was guilty of blurring his distaste for my shtick with distaste for my dick. But even more egregious than that, if you will, was the Department of Homeland Security confusing holy terrors with holy terrorists that day.
I mean, Rentboy was crooked, we all know that now, but what most of us don’t know is that Rentboy’s shtick wasn’t just crooked – it was curved. Curved in a way completely unrelated to matters involving Homeland Security, as well as ISIS. Before I go on, Reader, I should tell you I have the following information on good authority, and no, I won’t name names – not because he was a suit at Rentboy, but because he was one of the few men I’ve met who has achieved full maturity in this industry called Adult. In actuality, Rentboy’s crimes betrayed none other than the Fishies themselves and here’s how:
I was told that in the event a Hookie nominee or, Fishie (Fishy??) began to dominate the top categories, including the category of Dominant Top, Hookie himself was known to step-in and captain the awards, bending the votes to avoid sending one big Fishie home with a bunch of hooks in him.
I should tell you that my reaction to this revelation was double-sided. On side one, I had to wonder who thought it would be a better idea to manipulate voting results to ensure everyone who played hookie a passing grade instead of simply maintaining fair and strategic coverage of all rentboys throughout the year leading up to the ceremony, thus leveling the playing-field for a more balanced outcome on the “big night?”
On side two, had I been nominated in and dominated every major category of the event, I’d expect to win every godforsaken award in each of those categories, whether or not I was Rocco Steele. It didn’t equate, robbing the rightful winner to give to the whores to spare them the shame of leaving the show without tricks, all the while denying the Big Fish the enjoyment of sweeping the deck Rentboy worked all year long to help him stack. The strategy was, well… gay! It was a gay strategy. Reader, before you object, consider these well-known facts regarding the minority group in question:
Fact: Gays in general all seem to possess an eerie flair for interior decorating. Somewhere Martha Stewart is shaking her head and whispering to herself, “I’ll never be top-drawer.”
Fact: Gays have impeccable gift-wrapping skills. The girls at Macy’s counter all seem like party poopers by comparison.
Fact: Gays enter the world with a killer sense of rhythm and a knack for club-dancing that even Madonna envies.
And yet, holding an award ceremony that maintains a modicum of respectability seems to fall outside The Gay’s grasp. (Not you, Tony. Never you.) If you don’t believe me, just Google “2017 gay porn awards held by industry tyrant for his favorite studios, hosted by famous comedienne” and you’ll be blinded by a glaring example of the like. Not that I care at all.
But something dismaying happened that week in New York, the last year of The Hookies. No, Reader, it wasn’t losing in both categories. Besides, I actually met Chris Roberts and Leo Sweetwood that night. Both were very easy guys to lose to. There were a few other famed woodsmen who I would have liked to have met as well, but everyone was busy and there just wasn’t time. In all fairness, the place was full of mirrors.
What really shed a glowing neon light on Rentboy’s direct dislike of me wasn’t part of the award ceremony, itself. It started beforehand and commenced afterward. A week prior to the big night, the not-quite-yet-convicted big-wigs over at Rentboy sent all of us an e-vite that read:
“To any advertisers attending The 2015 Hookie Award Ceremony,
You are cordially invited to Headquarters for a brief interview with a member of our crew to be included in our Rentboy Talk segment on YouTube! Those interested should contact Sean Van Sant to let him know what time works for you. We’ll probably be conducting interviews on Thursday or Friday. We look forward to seeing all of you!”
Rentboy Talk was a recurring segment spotlighting individual rentboys with a mindless Q and A that spanned five mesmerizing minutes of unadulterated escort genius. I imagine the interviews are somewhere out there on the internet and if you can’t find them, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ek839Hoql8I is a link to my personal favorite. Come to think of it, you should probably stop reading this blog and watch it. I mean, you think you know all there is to know about terrorism and then…a rentboy talks. And no! That isn’t an intentional oxymoron – they just got lucky.
Reader, I can’t lie. I longed for a spot on Rentboy Talk more than flies long for fresh shit, however, I didn’t want to seem anxious or anything like that, so I waited about an hour before I called Van Sant directly and said, “Sean, I’d like to introduce myself. It’s Miles Previtire. I’m driving in from Vegas and would be honored to be interviewed for Rentboy Talk. What time Thursday works best for you?” His response, “Wow, Miles.”
I played hookie all week in New York, waiting for a follow-up from someone. I had prepared answers to any question they could throw at me. I had my facial expressions and reactions down for every possible emotion they could evoke. I couldn’t wait – could not wait – for my turn and I wasn’t leaving until I was absolutely certain it was never going to happen. I may have emailed Sean. I may have called again. Okay both.
“Hey, it’s Miles Previtire here. Just checking to see if you missed my first email. I got the invite and I would really love to do a Rentboy interview and… I’m here in town for the awards just… Well, you said you’d be conducting the interviews on Thursday and… Oh, what a beautiful ceremony that was, huh? I’m so glad Leo Sweetwood won for Best Social Media. It’s awesome. Really. I tell you, it was an honor just to be nominated. (Oh fuck.) Hope to hear from you. Soon. It’s Thursday night. Thanks!”
I know, I know. Reader, what can I say other than we’ve all been babes in the woods at some point or another in our lives? I can tell you, if a tree happens to fall in those woods, a smart babe will haul ass back to Sin City without stopping for a diaper change. Especially a babe like me who had the added disadvantage of being plagued that week with a bright-red nose and a nasally drawl that would have yielded an interview Rentboy could have used to embarrass me for years to come – had I heard from them.
Back in Vegas, I asked my good associate about it.
“It was a great time. Great seeing all of you.”
“You too, Miles.”
“Yeah, I regret the Rentboy interview not happening. I know you guys were super-busy with the ceremony and everything like that. Maybe next time, though, huh?”
“What do you mean, Miles?”
“Rentboy Talk. I emailed Sean about it. Even when I was in New York. I just assumed…”
“Miles, we held the interviews on Thursday afternoon. Didn’t anyone call you?”
I think I was upset for about six months after hanging up the phone. During that time, I’m sure I muttered something like, “Sean Van Cunt” at least once or twice and what do you know, it just stuck.
I spent the next few months in Las Vegas as an escort – not a very popular one. I had big plans starting out. My minuscule celebrity in the Midwest was overwhelming. I thought for sure this city would catapult me into the mainstream. As time went on, I became the escort everyone talked about but nobody hired. Van Cunt and his minions spent the next year in Federal Court staving off real policemen. I spent mine playing one in a porno funded by a millionaire.
See? Vegas wasn’t a fetish city. It’s wasn’t San Francisco or LA where average or decent looking guys like myself were the go-to for the whoa-two. Vegas is plastic fantastic. All the female sex-workers have been to Jiffy Boob and have perfect teeth. All the male sex-workers are on coke or meth and have blue eyes no matter what color their hair is. I didn’t fit in. I did not fit in. It didn’t take long for me to get the idea.
I had one foot on a plane headed home when the call came in from McCain, who eventually became my investor for Previtus Media. I still remember the conversation. He called me up and told me he’d just won the lottery and would I ever guess who’s name was first on his Bucket List? No, really.
He went on to describe a scenario that would have prompted me to hang up on him had I blue eyes, muscle implants and steroidal rage running through me. Lucky for him. Luckier for me. One man gets his wet dream, served dry. The other gets a fully-staffed porn studio that specializes in entertainment you can’t get anywhere else, of course. Every man gets his wish. Every girl gets a flower crown. Even you, Sire.
Sorry, Hawk. You didn’t deserve that.