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Tuesday, March 02, 2010
Kristin Davis: More appropriate than ever!

On Monday, I woke at an ungodly hour, to attend a morning news conference at the Roosevelt Hotel. It was traumatic but worth it! Kristin Davis, the New York madam who was arrested for running an escort agency during the Eliot Spitzer scandal, says she supplied him with call girls for five years—when he was attorney general and when he was governor of New York. (Not to mention his abusive record, busting escort agencies and promoting anti-customer laws.)

Now she's campaigning as an independent for his former job. The timing is noteworthy because Spitzer is rumored to be considering a return to electoral politics.

I enjoyed meeting Kristin's campaign team, including communications director Andrew (pictured, in a black newsie.)

Kristin isn't the first sex worker to run for political office. I interviewed Thierry Schaffauser (Liste des Verts, Paris) and US activist Norma Jean Almodovar (Libertarian Party), in addition to Kristin. Read about it here:

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Sunday, February 28, 2010
Morning Brew: New York 10:10pm tonight aka Hong Kong 11:10am

Tracy will be on the radio at 11:10 am Hong Kong time, Monday, 1 March. You can listen online here or wait for the archive if you miss the show. She'll be discussing her Daily Beast column about the rigors of sex worker romance.

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Thursday, February 25, 2010
Should You Give Up Your Day Job for a Man?

We hate to admit this, but for quite a few of us ladies it's easy to get all hot and bothered when the man we love resents our work. It makes us feel like the star of our own private, x-rated soap opera.

And we're more forgiving than we might be if we worked in, say, a bank or a department store. In fact, we would regard any man who resents his wife/girlfriend working at a bank as an abusive, scary nutter. Men who don't think women should work are out of step in mainstream Western life.

But an exception is made for men who love women in the sex industry.

Adult-film actress Joslyn James (aka Veronica Siwik-Daniels) says she stopped working because her alleged lover, Tiger Woods, was "very jealous." She has a high profile lawyer and, quite possibly, a valid claim. You can watch the video and read my latest Daily Beast column here.

I'd love to know what you think! Would you quit turning tricks/making films for a guy? Is this a problem for male sex workers? Or is it just the girls who fall for this line? Write to

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Sunday, February 21, 2010
Audio Archives: In the beginning

Now that Tiger Woods has done a public apology and we can all get on with our lives, here's the interview I did with Phil Whelan on Radio 3 HK: Sex, race and golf in early December.

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Friday, February 12, 2010
My Valentine's Day Broadcast: Listen live or read the column


...your romance goes kablooey right before Valentine's Day forgot to tell your sugardaddy you're engaged - or, worse, married!'re cheating on your wife - with a man're waiting until March to break up because you can't say NO to one more expensive present

If it's complicated, this one's for you:

Reduce the damage you've been courting all year and turn your personal entanglements, dubious choices, into an asset this weekend. My new Daily Beast column is here.

I'll be on Radio 3 shortly after 11 pm in New York, high noon in Hong Kong, about 8 hours from now. You can listen live at

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Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Audio Archives: What's kinky about a recession?

I was going to add this to my archives on December 8, 2009.

But the Tiger Woods scandal interrupted everybody's life - and I totally forgot. Mid-upload, I just got totally distracted by the demands of the scandal machine. And we all know you cannot argue with a machine.

Well, Tiger is less of a burning issue now, but we're still in a recession. Today (surprised?) this interview from February 2009 sounds more current than Tiger's love life, but we knew that was going to happen, didn't we? Listen here.

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Tuesday, January 05, 2010
First Audio Upload of the Year!

Phil Whelan and Tracy, holding the line on Winnie-the-Pooh and 'Wicked.' Click here to listen.

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Things We Will No Longer Whinge About

Obama's temperament. Internet as predator; newspaper as victim. People who make more money than you do. Tina nailed it here.

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Thursday, December 31, 2009

Ashley Dupré (left), the escort linked with former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer, has little in common with her contemporary Jamie Jungers. Despite some recent allegations about escorting, Jamie (on morning TV!) denied any connection to prostitution while sharing the unhappy details of her relationship with Tiger Woods. My Daily Beast column, about women who thrive in scandal's aftermath, takes a look at sex industry icons in different eras. Mandy Rice-Davies (right) has far more in common with Ashley than anyone else I can think of. But I would say that, wouldn't I?

Follow me on Twitter, send a comment to

Thanks for reading!

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Monday, December 28, 2009

Daily Beast: How to Trademark a Scandal

Ashley Dupre says she's the poster child for redemption. Why her new gig as a junior agony aunt actually helps to redeem the New York Post. My latest Daily Beast column here.

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Sunday, December 06, 2009

Golf Concubines of 2009

Ashley Dupré (outed by the New York Times in 2008 because she had done a session with Eliot Spitzer) is in the news again. This week, she spoke out about the Tiger Woods scandal and lambasted the golf pro's concubines for abusing their access to the media by cashing in on sex with a married celeb.

My take in today's Daily Beast: "Ashley is emerging as a gritty modern ethicist. Tiger, for reasons we can only begin to analyze, isn't turned on by safety and ethics, and who can blame him? Hanging out with sex workers isn't risky enough, from an emotional perspective—and professionals are unlikely to idolize him."

You can read my column here:

I would love to hear your thoughts, whether you agree or disagree. If your comments are for publication, please send them to

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Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Mary Magdalene and Me: Watch this space for news about her US tour

UPDATE: Listen live tonight on RTHK at 11:10 PM New York time. (This is Thurs morning in HK.)

BEAST: Mary Magdalene is visiting the New York area until November 17. A relic of Mary Magdalene, patron saint of fallen women, the Dominican Order and Provence, is touring the US for the first time. My latest column in The Daily Beast explores the implications for the Church, as well as my personal and political relationship with this unique, multifaceted saint.

VIDEO: A wonderful video from Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana, where she stopped before her return to NYC.

TOUR: You can find her next appearance here.

UPDATE: She will be venerated this Friday Nov. 13 and Saturday Nov. 14 at St James Cathedral, Brooklyn. Friday evening from 5:00 pm - 10:00 pm with a short service at 5:00. Saturday all day from 9:00 am til 7:00 pm. Be there or be square.

UPDATE: The image of the Magdalene on the St Thomas Aquinas site is gorgeous! This is definitely the pre-conversion Magdalene. Sunday @ 11 am: Procession with the Relics followed by 12 noon Bilingual Mass For more info: 718-768-9471

DIARY: Just spoke to Father Joseph at Most Precious Blood church in Bath Beach, Brooklyn. He says 1000 people came to venerate the Magdalen relic today. The relic arrived at 10:30 am and there was a mass at 11 am, followed by private veneration from 2-3pm, and Holy Hour from 3-4pm.

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Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Tell Me More

Sex and the workplace
is the opening segment! A roundtable with host Michel Martin, Tracy Quan, Ruth Houston and Jennifer Kearns.

I totally enjoyed dishing about the pros and cons of a work-related affair on NPR. You can listen online or download for your longterm enjoyment. I think we have four unique perspectives here.

The entire show is worth a listen. What's more controversial at work? Hair or sex? For some people, it is all about the hair.

Seventeen minutes on hair, eleven for sex. NPR imitates life in the sex industry!

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Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Bedding Your Boss

What kind of woman sleeps with her boss? In the ’90s, she was cast as a victim, in the ’60s as a predator. What women want - and how the rules of the game have changed, in my latest week's Daily Beast column.

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Tuesday, September 08, 2009
The Look of Virtue or ... Of Bankers and Babysitters

In the US, Barack Obama’s first day of school speech has pushed all kinds of buttons. On the extreme right, he was attacked with mindless zeal, while his centrist supporters were somewhat defensive.

And this was before he gave the speech.

Lee Siegel in The Daily Beast has one of the most insightful responses to the president’s schoolroom speech. An unpredictable essayist with his own take on modern life, he recently published Against the Machine, a quirky polemic about the plight of the blogger and the excesses of online commenting – amongst other things.

Who better to analyse the president’s slick yet wholesome message?

And now I know why the entire “controversy” has been making me snicker. While liberals and conservatives were trading cliches about the president’s anodyne advice, my inner 12-year-old just wanted to cut school.

Because Obama’s speech to the kiddies is “borrowed from” William Bennett’s infamous work, The Book of Virtues, a “treasury of great moral stories” for social conservatives. Siegel was outraged, but I’m impressed when my president does stuff like this.

Siegel writes:
Imagine Obama warning the bankers and the businessmen that they could only be bailed out if they fulfilled their responsibilities. But he didn’t hesitate to tell that to the kids.
Okay, fine, but can we also get real? The grown-ups have always behaved one way around kids and another way around bankers (i.e. other grown-ups.) Most parents talk to their kids not quite the same way they talk to a loan officer, broker, attorney, used car salesman… any adult they have to do business with.

Sometimes this is the reason parents drink. Making the switch can be stressful, but it’s part of the parental role – and parents who can’t play it are incompetent.

The good middle class parent (personified by Obama) tells the children about responsible living and tries to discourage greed, sloth and lying. All competent parents know that their own generation is guilty of these things, but the idea is a sound one: if you believe these aren’t ‘the done thing,’ you will keep your most dangerous impulses under control. (It’s how we learn to avoid red meat or pizza most days while having the occasional flesh/carbohydrate feast.)

Parents (personified by Obama) are supposed to hold children to a higher moral and behavioural standard than they hold other people. (Higher standards can be annoying, but they harm nobody.)

I know all this because I was once a child (and so was Lee Siegel) but I was also … a BABYSITTER. (Was Lee Siegel ever??) As a barely nubile babysitter, I was like middle management – and the parents I worked for were the board of directors. We babysitters were the foremen on the factory floor of childhood.

As a babysitter, your theoretical role is to uphold official values – but if you’re under a certain age (as I was) you are still a kid, so you want to critique and thumb your nose at these values. (If your charges fall asleep early enough, all this is moot. You can do whatever.)

Basically, Obama’s well-behaved speech was about one obvious (to babysitters) fact of life.

Childhood is a time for obeying the rules other people – most notably bankers, and even a few babysitters – don’t have to follow.

While this is deeply unfair, I don’t think it’s William Bennett’s fault. Parents of almost every political persuasion uphold this system and Obama, have you noticed, is a member of the parent class.

However, his advice about Facebook makes me wonder if he’s a closet babysitter. (BOTUS??)


Wednesday, September 02, 2009
With him?!

Ron Weinstein talks about his wife's book (Madoff's Other Secret) and the affair she had with Bernie Madoff.

My latest at The Daily Beast.

You can subscribe to my Daily Beast RSS feed here or visit my author page.

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Wednesday, August 26, 2009
When Bernie Met Sheryl

Sheryl Weinstein, who had a 20-year relationship with Ponzi king Bernie Madoff, is the latest incarnation of Gustave Flaubert’s Emma Bovary.

What could an Upper East Side baby boomer and former CFO of a wealthy charity have in common with the 19th century’s original Desperate Housewife?

My response to Madoff's Other Secret: Love, Money, Bernie, and Me

You can read it here.

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Sunday, August 16, 2009
New Video: Tracy & the Beast

...on Ida Jeng's Kosmopolit blog for the Danish daily Politiken. Is coitus interruptus really truly "better than nothing"?

My Daily Beast column on "the new unsafe sex" is here.

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Saturday, August 15, 2009
Mansfield Frazier's columns

Posting these links from the Frazier archives for Laura. Just like I said! Obamanation revisited and Bernie Madoff, Prison Royalty.


Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Margaret Sanger must be spinning in her grave

If you thought the New York Times was joking when they hyped an academic paper that champions the so-called “pullout method” as the next big thing in contraception, you weren’t alone. How did the Guttmacher Institute get their name mixed up with this?

Today's Daily Beast column is here

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Saturday, July 11, 2009
This Thursday in Manhattan: Tales from the Closet

I'm honored (or honoured, your choice) to be part of Neke Carson's new project.

Portraits from the Closet: July 16 through August 15th.

The Drawbridge has all the details.

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Thursday, April 30, 2009
XX Factor & NRO React to the Beast

The last time Kerry Howley had the misfortune of noticing Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal... Read her Craigslist comments here. (I keep hearing that Joni Mitchell song!)

Over at the Corner, Ramesh Ponnuru seems to be taking potshots at online escorts and men who pay for sex. Gentle potshots, but still... Can the right wing afford to alienate people who buy and sell sex? In my experience, it's rarely wise to trash your old friends!


Wednesday, April 29, 2009
This Week: Scapegoating Craigslist

In 19th-century London, a serial killer preyed on women who used the local streets and pubs to meet their customers. Those killings are now, unfortunately, treated as entertaining legend, while new myths about sex work, violence and technology flourish; we’ve gone from "Jack the Ripper" to the so-called "Craigslist Killer."

I am especially disgusted with those using Julissa Brisman's death as an opportunity to harass Craigslist, and talked about it last night on WPHT 1210 AM in Philly. (Will have an MP3 up soon.) UPDATE on May 1: Here's the MP3.

For my latest Daily Beast column, I spoke to Melissa Gira Grant and others about hype versus reality. Read it here.

I'll be visiting the Alan Colmes show this Friday.
You can listen live on Friday evening 11 PM - 1 AM. More details to follow!

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Monday, March 09, 2009
Spitzergate Update

On the anniversary of Eliot Spitzer’s exposed liaison with Ashley Dupre, a certain madam is considering releasing the names in her little black book.

Read about it here in my new Daily Beast column.

I talked to Natalie McLennan, Benjamin Nicholas, and many others in the escort world. Let me know what you think!

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Friday, February 13, 2009
Valentine Confession

I was an unrepentant prostitute experiencing the ultimate bourgeois fantasy...

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Tuesday, February 10, 2009
Feeding the Beast

You can follow my Daily Beast columns here.

Jan 12: Prince Harry - idiot subversive?
The uproar over a royal halfwit’s casual relationship with a camcorder is tabloid PC at its most cynical.
Feb 3: Kinkonomics

Got some interesting coverage in Jezebel, Salon, Examiner, and on

Stay tuned - there will be more, soon!

FEB 14 PS: As promised, here is my new Daily Beast column.

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Monday, February 09, 2009
Feeling the Beast

I'm tickled to be writing for The Daily Beast and I really enjoy being part of their mix. I'll post news of my Beast columns in a separate item - here are a few of my recent favorites!

This guy, Mansfield Frazier, is a hoot! I'm getting addicted to his sassy commentary - for example, on why Bernie Madoff will be prison royalty.

Max Blumenthal on Rick Warren's anti-condom tactics:
Lantos insisted that Congress lift the abstinence-only earmark imposed by Republicans in 2002, and begin to fund family planning elements like free condom distribution. His maneuver infuriated Warren, who immediately boarded a plane for Washington to join Christian right leaders including born-again former Watergate felon Chuck Colson for an emergency press conference on the Capitol lawn. In his speech, Warren claimed that Lantos’ bill would spawn an increase in the sex trafficking of young women.
I generally love Tina Brown's Daily Beast editorials, but this one especially - today's - made me sit up: Obama's Strange Obsession!

As did this, also about Obama, on Jan 20:

I told him my husband still has the contract he signed as president of Random House when their imprint Times Books acquired Dreams from My Father. "Worth something now, huh?" he told me, as he draped a long arm to gather me in between himself and his even taller vice president and easefully lit up for the camera. I felt safer and calmer than I have for eight years.