Although this is a humorous anecdote, it is true and I’ve told it exactly as it happened with just a few asides and nothing is made up. Certainly all the dialogue is reproduced accurately – I’m not likely to forget it! (translated into English, she spoke only French)
I was staying in the Hotel ****** in one of those suburbs of Paris just outside the peripherique. It was early evening and as I had nothing to do I was leafing through NOVA magazine looking for an exciting way to spend the evening. NOVA is a sort of listings come happenings publication and it had been carelessly or thoughtfully or left there by some previous guest.
It provides a list of the “in” places to go, but I’m not really an “in” place person. However at the end of the listings I came across a series of Petites Annonces – Personal Ads. I was just looking at it out of curiosity – yes curiosity I was not looking for the advert which ran “jolie fille sexy recherche rencontre hot sur Paris” and I did not answer that one (honest). Then I noticed a section headed Photos - Modeles which seemed to consist mainly of photographers looking for lady models willing to pose for photographs - “artistique et nu” was how they were described. Well “artistique” means not surprisingly “artistic” and “nu” means “nude” – so they were looking for girls willing to take all there clothes off for the amusement of gentleman photographers. Nice work, as they say, if you can get it. Then one advert which caught my eye. I can’t remember the exact words but it was something like:
Recherche Hommes - JF photographe vous re?t dans son studio pour les photos de toutes sortes. (I knew photographe meant photographer and JF was jeune fille? - Juliette)
And it gave a telephone number. That looked quite exciting enough. What was “de toutes sortes”? Was it the same as “artistiques et nu?” Should I ring up and offer to do it? Now you must appreciate that in real life I am really very shy and timid and it took a lot of courage for me to pick up the phone and dial the number. Also remember that this is in France and although my French is decent my schooling in the works of Moliere and Racine was unlikely to stand me in much good stead for this type of conversation. So I rang up and stuttered out that I had read the advert and what was she looking for. She said (as far as I could gather – she spoke no English) that she was looking for ordinary men to pose for her as models. And then she was saying to come round now and giving me an address, and the next thing I knew I’d made an arrangement to go. And I hadn’t really established what was meant by “de toutes sortes”.
I mean I presumed she wanted photos that were artistiques et nu but I didn’t really know what to expect but despite all my nerves I set off partly because the idea appealed to my vanity, partly because it seemed rather exciting and daring, but mainly because having phoned up I didn’t quite know how to say no. Anyway – I thought – I could always just not turn up. But she’d told me to come to her studio, which by a strange chance (and I’m not making this up) was at 4, Avenue Amiral Jauriac in Montrouge, not twenty minutes walk from the hotel.
I thought I could just walk along there and see what it looked like. I could always turn back if I got cold feet. So I set off straight away and walked there thinking it over as I went along. Really I didn’t know what she was after – I could have been the ugliest looking thing in Paris for all she knew. She had said she just wanted “ordinary” people.
Too late now to find out as I had found 4, Av Amiral Jauriac without difficulty. It looked like an ordinary terraced suburban dwelling. I walked past the door several times, nervously deciding whether to press the doorbell. Then I thought “What the heck!” I rang the bell and announced myself in the speakerphone “J’arrive” came the reply. The door was opened by a striking tall, dark haired girl, or rather woman, I should think in her late twenties. She was wearing black slacks and a rather tight white blouse over an ample bosom and she was a “jolie fille sexy” if ever I saw one!
I was a bit non-plussed as I had been expecting a studio and I muttered that I was looking for the Juliette.
“That’s me - Juliette” she said
She invited me in, and there I was. I had imagined this would be a photographer’s studio but it was nothing of the sort, this was somebody’s front room and not a professional photo studio.
She looked at me up and down for a few seconds and said (and I can remember the exact words):
“Ah bon! D?billez-vous”. D?billez! Did she mean deshabillez - Take your clothes off! (You’re supposed to pronounce the‘s’ habiller is not an aspirate ‘h’).
“What do you want me to take off?” I asked, I don’t know why, but it was the only thing I could think of to say
“Your clothes of course” (I’m translating her French all the way through)
“All of them?”
“Tout ?ait” she replied (of course)
Somehow I hadn’t fully believed until now that, “toutes sortes” was the same thing as “artistique et nu” but now I was in no doubt! She stood waiting and I suddenly realised that I was going to have to go through with it. There was no going back. I was in the middle of her front room, and I was going to have to strip naked. I couldn’t get out of it now – I couldn’t just say “Oh I didn’t understand. I’ve got another appointment– Good Bye” – that would have made me look stupid, and an Englishman would rather strip naked than look stupid. So I just had to get on with it.
Then, as if it was obvious, and perhaps sensing my reticence she smiled and said “Nous sommes ?aris monsieur”. The “monsieur” sounded strangely formal considering the circumstances.
Oh well I was going to have to do it.
And not quite knowing what to do next I looked around. Where was I to get undressed? Surely there must be some sort of changing room, or a screen even. She could hardly just expect me to strip naked in the middle of her front room could she? Oh yes she could.
“Where do I get undressed” I asked
“Just take your clothes off here”, she repeated “and to put them on the chair”
I was just to stand there and take all my clothes off in the middle of her front living room.
I sat on the settee and took my shoes off and I waited. Then perhaps sensing my embarrassment she turned her back while I undressed.
I sat down and took off my shoes. That was it I’d committed myself. Once I’d started to strip I’d have to continue.
And that’s what I did. One by one my clothes all came off and when she turned round there I was standing in my birthday suit blushing crimson.
I was, to put it crudely, displaying my penis to her (I hoped) admiring gaze.
That is the trouble with being a man when you are in the nude. Unlike a girl who can demurely keep her legs together, as a man I was now being forced to display my penis. And I wasn’t at all sure by now what sort of pictures she wanted. Did she want it (that is to say my penis) demurely hidden, or on full display and more worryingly (and I’m sorry if this is a bit rude but I’m just telling it as it was) was she going to get it up or down. It may seem strange but that’s exactly what you worry about in that situation and you don’t always have a lot of control over your penis!.
I looked around. I was in a front living room with a rug in front of a fireplace, a settee in red leather, and a statue of the Venus de Milo. In an alcove was a computer. To one side was a wooden stool
I looked back at her. She was holding a digital camera to take the photos and I suddenly got a feeling that this was strange for a photographer (digital cameras were quite unusual at that time). And then it struck me. She wasn’t a real photographer, I was displaying my penis for a housewife amusing herself
She suddenly announced “Are you cold?”
Lest you think from this that she was complaining that on surveying my penis she had found it shrunk, this was not the case. In fact she was asking the question because she’d noticed I had gone from blushing to shivering
Not surprising with nothing on you might think, but the fact is I was not shivering with cold, I was shivering with embarrassment. But this is what happens when you find yourself stripped naked in front of a stranger. I suppose embarrassment about our own nudity is something so built in that we can’t help it. And here I was in a strange house with a “jolie fille sexy” I’d only just met, and somehow was ending up standing there in front of her in the all together showing her – oh damn - a half erect penis.
And I freely admit it - I’d never felt so embarrassed in all my life and there was nothing I could do about it.
Anyway now I was going to find out exactly how “artistic” the pictures were to be.
Sorry if some of these deions are explicit, but I think it’s best just to use straightforward words to describe anatomical parts (and anatomical parts will have to be described).
She asked me to stand beside the statue, and I stood back to the camera.
“Now face the camera”, she said
Now for the full frontal. Well we were in Paris.
I waited for her to say something. Perhaps to arrange things so as to cover my penis, but she just looked and said “Good. But can you smile and be more sexy” (I don’t know if the “bon” was just a turn of phrase or an expression of approval of my dimensional attributes. With luck it was the latter – although my penis is not enormous, it is, even if I say so myself, well proportioned – oh well of average length - when it’s up!). Anyway it was now clear she wanted my penis in the pictures.
Mind if by “plus sexy” she meant that she wanted my penis even bigger she was in luck.
Because it was getting decidedly bigger. Now that it was the centre of attention, attention was what it was starting to stand to. Damn ! damn ! damn ! How much more embarrassing could it get. My penis was going erect! When it was about half way up she said
“Turn to the side and look at the camera”
“No - smile. Nice smile and can you be sexy”
These weren’t artistic – she wanted sexy photos of me in the nude. I couldn’t smile though. I was honestly too embarrassed about the condition of my penis!
Anyway, if she wasn’t happy with state of my smile she didn’t seem worried about the state of my penis. I must say she seemed to be enjoying herself, and I suppose if we can bring a little happiness into the world (even if it’s only by letting a girl have a good look at the size of your penis) it is a small achievement to have accomplished.
“Bon. Ok - Sit down on the sofa” she said and she pointed to the couch.
And she took a picture of me sitting on the couch with one foot tucked into the inside of the opposite thigh. At least my penis was subsiding a bit!
“Bon. C’est chouette ? Now we take a short break”
“Should I get dressed?”
“Pourquoi?” and she went out to fetch some coffee leaving me still in the nude
She came back in to sit on the settee to drink .
“Sit down for the coffee”
And she pointed to the wooden stool. It was like a tall bar stool and I perched on it. I could only maintain my balance by opening my legs wide displaying everything to her view.
It was quite bizarre sitting there with nothing on, and drinking coffee and chatting as if it was the most normal thing in the world.
I admitted that I had not posed like that before, and she said that she had realised that because I had seemed “un peu reticent”.
“You should not be shy. I like see you in the nude In France we like to see the nude”
So I had to sit there, looking sexy (the French seem to love that word) in the nude, showing her my sexy parts; and with my legs apart to keep my balance she had a rather good view. It dawned on me that that was why she had got me to sit there – so she could enjoy chatting about being sexy nude.
Then she wanted me back on the couch. Little did I know it but the embarrassment was about to begin in earnest
“Lie down with the face down she said”
“Can you move just like this - here”
And she started patting my bare bottom to get me to move it”!
This is where it started to get really embarrassing because her hand patting my bottom made my penis go up again.
Damn , damn damn ! It went absolutely rigid. And there was no hiding it.
“Bon. Oui. Kneel on the couch please”
And there I had to kneel in the nude while she got my now rigid penis in profile.
She smiled slightly
“Bon. Very sexy. Keep nice and sexy”
So that was what she meant by sexy – with my penis up!
“OK ?uatre pattes” - exactly like that – “go down on your hands and knees”. And she made me go down on all fours with my bottom in the air, my penis erect and (as I discovered later) my anus visible.
And she photographed me from all sides, crawling around on the floor stark naked. Me trying to smile, but too self conscious about the size of my penis!
She insisted I was too “rigide” (she was right there – though I think she was referring to my not being relaxed rather than to the state of my penis!). She kept trying to get me more “d?ntract?(smile and look sexy!).
I was beginning to be convinced that what she had really wanted from me all the time had been nude pics with an erect penis.
And that was it. I got dressed. She downloaded copies of the pictures onto a disk for me, and I left. (Yes a disk – it was the days before memory sticks!)
When I got back and looked at the photos I’m afraid that most of them were both technically and artistically poor. In addition she had taken some detailed close-ups of my penis and my bottom which I hadn’t known about.
Anyway digital pictures featuring my – well everything I suppose - are now on file somewhere, probably circulating in e-mails with a funny caption. At least I’m known by my face, so if my penis comes up (no pun intended) in one of those funny e-mails that women like to circulate among themselves no-one will be any the wiser!
I suppose it filled in the evening if nothing else and in the end I got dressed and left. No this is not a modern romantic novel. This did not lead to a “rencontre hot” (sorry but I’m sticking to the facts here). I still have copies of the pictures! I still have the faint concern that somebody I know will decide to take a course in Photography and come across one of them mounted in an exhibition.
Out of curiosity I did later try to follow up this episode and find out who she was. When I rang the number again it was no longer available. When I went back to the house some time later it turned out to be rented and had another occupier. The advert has never appeared again. So your guess is as good as mine.
Maybe she was just no good as a photographer and gave up.