Paying for Sex: A Personal Note

Two unfairly maligned professions: prostitutes and cartoonists

Chester Brown has an amazing new book out called Paying For It, a challenging sexual memoir about romantic love and prostitution. I’d strongly encourage everyone to read it.

In the Globe and Mail, I write about the political and social implications of Brown’s book. See here. I hope to do a future essay that deals with Paying For It more as a remarkable work of art, rather than just a polemic.
In the meantime, an excerpt from my Globe piece:

Over the past decade, I’ve spent far more time talking about romantic love with cartoonist Chester Brown than any of my other male friends. Yet it is hard to describe Chester as a romantic. His last conventional relationship ended in 1996, when he broke up with his long-time girlfriend, Sook-Yin Lee, the well-known CBC personality and film director. Since then, Chester has had sex only with prostitutes.

Chester’s sex life, which has long been a staple of amused and amazed conversation in my social circle, is now getting a wider public airing with the publication of his new comic-strip memoir, Paying For It, which details his midlife decision to abandon the search for a soulmate and become a very satisfied customer of Toronto’s thriving sex trade.


3 thoughts on “Paying for Sex: A Personal Note

  1. I have no issue with paying for sex (what consenting adults do in private whether paid for or not should be no concern of anyone other than the people concerned). I do, however find it sad that a person should give up on the possibility of forming a permanent loving relationship with another human being and choose to see prostitutes as a substitute for love.

  2. Maybe it’s when they have no relationship …. I suggest you read Dresden Green by Nicholas Freeling which has a perceptive description of a man in midlife who lost his wife and infant son in the Dresden bombin.It’s a thriller of a sort but much more than that in its description of human relationships and sympathetic portrayal of women.[Rare in many male writers]

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