I’m officially sick of my job. Not the actual act of massaging, no. But sick of the place itself. You want to know where I work? Fine, I’ll tell you! Massage Envy Ct phone number……..I won’t give you the phone number, but it’s easy enough to find.
Where should I start? I’ll start at the very beginning. The beginning of my misery and the downfall of the little clinic I loved so dear. This all started with the hiring of a 56-year-old phony, bullshitting – busybody, Christina.
I wrote about her before. She’s the woman who got upset at me for not wanting to do massage exchanges with her (you can read about that here). She asked me if it’s because I don’t like people touching me. Pffffff, the nerve.
I didn’t like her then, and I STILL don’t! And I tried to like her. I honestly have tried, but I swear this woman hates me. And when I tell my coworkers how much she hates me, they say no, “She’s like that to everyone.”
The way she talks to her clients is so shrill and fake, anyone with a vague insight into the human psyche can see it.
She’s bouncy. You know what I mean? She goes to greet a client in the tranquillity room with about five or six clients silently waiting in there and she bounces on the couch next to her client and says: “So are you ready?! Are you ready to get your massage?!” And she’s sitting/bouncing on the couch at the same time. My coworker did an impression of her doing it, you have to see it to fully understand.
She likes to lecture people and “teach” them. She like’s to greet new clients by saying, “Hi I’m Christina. I’m the lead therapist and I only been working here since June, tee hee hee.” Again, my coworker was doing an impression. Funny as hell. “But nobody wanted the position! That’s the only reason she got it!” My coworkers get just as worked up over her as I do.
I was offered the role of lead therapist and I knew that if I didn’t accept, I would have to put up with Christina hovering over me and bossing me around. I knew (and I mean ESP knew) that my decision to turn down the role of top banana would cause me to quit. I just knew it – I know things like that. I also knew I didn’t want to stay there forever, or deal with Jeff on a regular basis. So I said no thanks.
Have I describe Christina well enough? Can you picture her yet? She is ceaselessly annoying, talks over others non-stop for hours on end. And since she’s the lead therapist, it’s her job to get all of us subordinates to adhere to her strict policy of up-selling. “SELL SELL SELL!” Her glistening chin protruding and her eyes bulge. “I sold my first enhancement of the day tee hee hee.”
I’m not so swift to listen to her lecture’s. I either leave the room while she’s talking, or zone out and play on my phone. Our “enhancements” mean that for an extra $12 you can get two hot wet towels applied to your back, or for an extra $10, you can get 12 drops of essential oil mixed into our regular all-purpose lotion. That’s what it is spoken plainly and candidly, but the way the franchise hypes it up, even the therapist’s buy into it! When I mention it to my clients, I can and usually do sell it if I want to, but it’s a rip-off and I won’t adhere to ripping people off.
Christina wants to write us a sales pitch and have us memorize it so we can give the spiel to our clients. “Isn’t that a lovely idea? Tee hee hee.” Just writing her laugh is annoying!
Okay, so anyway, I don’t want to make this post too long, so I’ll try to make it quick.
Last week I gave a massage to a man-baby. What I mean by man-baby is that this fully grown man had the body of a baby. I shit-you-not! Yes he was obese, but as I said before, I don’t think twice about obese clients. There are as many of them as there are people of “average” weight. To me, a body is a body, but a baby-man-body is something I take notice of!
It was as if he never stepped outside a uterus before. Or he was being intravenously fed by tube’s from The Matrix and was recently ejected out of the chute and into the real world with the first thing on his list, to get a massage.
He wanted deep tissue. Okay, no problem. I can do that. I pressed the palms of my hands into his back. I pressed down and then down some more and then down, down, down…….”What the fuck’s going on? No resistance? Where’s his muscle’s? Where’s his bones?” He was as squishy as a freshly baked doughnut. Not so much squishy, as he was soft. Squishy has resistance. He was as soft as…..a fucking baby! I don’t know how else to describe it. He was certainly unlike anything I’ve ever seen or massaged before. Unreal, really.
The way I like to give (and get) deep tissue massage is that I massage very hard, only the muscles that are of a rock hard density. This apparently wasn’t going to happen for this guy. He was built like a snowman.
And his personality even sounded like a baby. Sort of a bratty, “baby wants his binkie” or “baby did a doodie in his pants” kind of baby. He was the largest, softest man-child I have ever laid hands on and it gave me the willies’ when I sunk my elbow down into his guts. Gleh…..
I’m not usually this shallow and mean spirited, but this guy was a strange one. For the whole massage I was thinking, “how the hell am I supposed to massage him? How?”
About a week later my boss, Linda, told me that baby-man filled out an email follow-up questionnaire and emailed it back to the franchise.
Me – “Oh Jesus.”
Linda – “It’s okay, not a big deal. He just said that he wished you used more pressure, but he was too afraid to ask.”
Too afraid to ask? F*cking baby.
And that was it. “No bid deal” she says. So I brushed it off. It was my first negative feedback I received in two years.
But it didn’t end there. Christina heard about what happened and it was her way in. She found a chink in my otherwise impenetrable armor, and dug he claws.
She set up a training session with me. I saw it on my schedule when I walked into work yesterday. I point to the screen and say “What the hell is this?”
“It’s a practical with me! Tee hee hee.”
Me – “For what?”
Christina – “We’re just going to go over some protocol’s, draping procedure’s and that sort of thing. Don’t worry, I’m easy. Here, you can even look over what I’ll be grading you on.”
She hands me a chart with questions each having a scale from 1 to 5 beside each question.
What the fuck is this?
Me – “Is this from that one guy who complained about me last week?”
Christina – “Yes, Jeff take’s all complaints very seriously.”
Me – “So I get one complaint in two years and I have to take a practical exam?”
Christina – “I’m sure you had other complaints besides that one.”
Me – “Have I? How would I find that out?”
Christina – “They tell you verbally about each complaint and send you an email copy of the clients questionnaire they filled out.”
Me – “I’ve never gotten any email sent to me and Linda only told me about that one guy.”
Christina – “……..Jeff’s reinforcing his policy’s.”
She giggle’s and takes a bite out of her wrap. That’s the other thing, she is always eating. She claims she’s on a diet but I always see her stuffing her face. And she brings into work this really gross, homemade funky, gunky drink in a mason jar. She leaves it out sitting on the break room table all day and you can see the chunks in it separating and rising to form a jelly like crust on the surface.
“What the fuck is this?” Is an expression that runs repeatedly in my head through out the day.
That was the conversation practically word for word. Still burned into memory. By the time we started my practical, it was already 17 minutes into the massage, she wanted full body and the rip-off enhancement they call “Deep Heat Muscle Therapy.”
I wanted to throw up my hands and say fuck it I’m out, but I had clients and I was sort of stuck. I gave her the massage, she talked the entire time – loud talk “tee hee hee” talk. I undraped one of her legs and tuck the sheet under her thigh as I normally do, and she says that’s the wrong way.
“Massage Envy’s policy is the diaper drape.”
She raises her leg in the air (she was face up at this point) way higher than necessary that it made me uncomfortable and I wondered what the hell she was doing with her leg up so high. She pulled the sheet up so it was snug against her crotch.
“Te he, that’s better.”
This woman, goddammit, I seen the way she drapes and this is NOT it. When we have couple’s massages together, she uncovers the entire side of the body – from feet to head. One butt cheek perfectly exposed. Is that Massage Envy draping? No! It’s “I want to glide my hands up and down your naked body” kind of draping.
Damn, I didn’t want to make this a long post…..shit.
To wrap it up, she expressed to Linda, my boss, that I need extra training according to the grades she gave me on the chart. I was so infuriated beyond words, beyond my breaking point. I had a shit-fit and started telling everyone what was happening. I told them about the one guy that complained last week, and how it led up to this.
Coworker – “She does it to everyone, sweetie. Don’t worry, we’re all on your side.”
I couldn’t be subdued. I was hot, I was sweating. My coworkers patted me on the back, gave me hugs. But by the end of the night, I decided I wanted out. It’s quitting time for this lotion slinger.
To top the night off, I had to give a couple’s massage with Christina. This couple, husband and wife, love me enough to move around their schedule in order to stay on mine. The husband requested me this time. The wife didn’t request Christina, she just ended up with her.
After their massage, they got dressed and met us in the hallway to chat and drink the complimentary cup of water.
Wife – “We won’t be seeing you next month because we’re going away.”
I asked them where they were going and told them I won’t be around either because I’m going on a month long vacation.
Husband – “Oh really? Where?”
During this time, Christina was trying to talk over us, but the wife and I tuned her out – even the Husband tuned her out. It was awesome!
Me – “Nepal.”
Wife – “Oh my God I knew that! How did I already know that?!”
Her mouth hangs open and she stares at me.
Me – “I’m not sure, I only found out a few weeks ago. I haven’t seen you since then.”
Wife – “I’m very intuitive, but that’s just plain weird. I can’t believe I knew that!”
The husband chuckled. Christina finally gave up trying to talk over people.
Me – “Do you sense the trip will be okay?”
Wife – “Yes! It will be great! You will have a wonderful time.”
She was being so sincere. I could tell she was stunned by her telepathy and the way she looked at me made us share a sudden bond. People like Christina will never experience that.
Christina is not a bad person, she really isn’t. She like’s to cut people down, blow herself up, lie – any idiot can see that. She has mental issue’s. Even a client once called Christina “crazy” after getting a massage from her. But just because she has text-book psychosis’, doesn’t make her bad a bad person.
But anyway, I’m quitting. I spent two years working there anyway and I never stay at a job for longer than two years. I either leave out of boredom or annoyance. This time it’s a little of both.
Oh and Christina also told me that Jeff, the owner, was going to fire me! But he didn’t because Christina told him not to because it wouldn’t be fair. HA! She’s such a scammer! Everything is so phony about her.
When I got home, I wrote my letter of resignation:
At first I was trained
I was certified
Kept thinking I could never work
without Envy by my side
But I spent these past few hours
thinking how you did me wrong
I grew strong
I learned how to carry on!
and so I quit
from the Envy
I walked out of Christina’s lecture
left that look upon her face
I should have changed my stupid job
I should have wrote a new CV
If I had known for just one second
I would be quitting Massage Envy!
Go now go
I’m out the door
Just turn around now
’cause you’re not working anymore
Weren’t YOU the one who tempted me with free CEU’s?
You think I’d crumble
You think I’d give in for nickel and dimes?
Oh no, not I
I will resign
as long as I know how to rub
I know I will be fine
I’ve got all my life to live
I’ve got both my hands to give
and I’ll resign
It took all the strength I had not to disappear
kept trying hard to mend the pieces of my broken career
and so I spent oh so many minutes just feeling sorry for myself
I used to try
Now I hold my hands up high!
And now you see
I’m not that chained up little person
filling in gumballs just for you (has to do with selling enhancements)
and so you hoped I may conform or
just expect me to leave quietly
now I’m saving all my knowledge
for someone else who’s paying me,
– I Will Resign!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Um, okay, I thought about it and I’m not actually going to use that as my resignation letter.
So I wrote this instead;
I regret to inform you that I must part ways with Massage Envy. It was a very easy decision, although a sad one. I will write out a listed documentation of the reasons for my leaving. Hopefully you will see things from my point of view.
- I have recently been told by the head therapist that the only reason I’m still working there is because Jeff thought it would be unfair to fire me without a proper warning. This was a shock to me. I felt very threatened, and still do.
- What I find to be unfair is not receiving any information about client complaints. In the past two years, I have been told of one complaint, and that was last week. Since then I have corrected the problem from occurring again. Only yesterday did I find out that there were many other complaints. I had no knowledge of them and therefore I’m left with little chance of correcting my mistakes and growing as a therapist.
- I feel that the new added pressure to sell has gone beyond my comfort level. If a client says no the first time, I let them be. It is also hard for me to sell something that I find to be overpriced and overhyped (12 drops of oil for $10? Two hot towels for $12?). I also heard from the lead therapist that we are going to start utilizing a prepared sales pitch to give each client before every massage about the add-on’s. The massage is only 50 minutes, and now their time will be cut even shorter by listening to a very poor sales pitch from a desperate, scared therapist.
- I do not feel safe and secure in my job anymore.
- I’m starting to doubt my abilities and my choice of career.
- I’m losing sleep and feel stressed.
- I hear complaints from other therapist’s. Our turnover rate is increasing which is going to decrease clients. I know of several therapists who are trying to make their way out. Several already left with having similar complaints as mine.
- I’m getting paid $16 dollars an hour, which is what I agreed to. But under the new pressures and circumstances, the dollar amount is exceedingly low.
- There are no benefits for working at Massage Envy. Even for someone who’s been there for two years still has no job security or job growth. And as of late, no appreciation.
- I am no longer my happy, joyful self.
- I am a gifted, dynamic, intuitive, loving person who feels that Massage Envy can no longer meet my level of requirement. I have only one level, and that is enjoyment of my job.
I have already a job in my hometown that pays double for what Massage Envy pays. The owner says that I am more than welcome to work as much as I like and pick my own hours. My plan is to start my own business when I arrive back home after trekking the Himalayas for a month.
Letting go of something I once loved, brings about more love and expansion.
That is why I must let you go.
Peace out cub scout,
Is that harsh? Am I an asshole or am I an asshole? Fuck, who care’s. Seriously though, I really do have another job. The only thing I don’t like about my other job is that I have to sit and answer phones, do laundry for free. But if I can get at least 10 clients a week there, I’ll be making the same amount of money that I do at Envy, plus I don’t have to drive all the way to Glastonbury.
I told my parents all about Christina and my mom said that she knew people just like her, “That woman’s a bitch. Don’t listen to her.” Thanks mom! It’s times like these that I’m thankful I still live at home. They don’t ask for rent, they stick up for me and call my nemesis’ bitches for me. I love them!
I could do without all the whistle’s and my dad pointing at me telling me I’m going to get raped and murdered and nobody will be there to help me in Nepal. But I tell ya, when it comes down to it, I choose them over a husband and kid’s. For now anyway….While I can.
And now your moment of zen: