Massage & Bodywork

September/October 2009

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practitioner parables BY ROBERT CHUTE MASSAGE THERAPISTS WANT … 1. The ability to buy a massage. Trading is nice, but receiving the work without the obligation of reciprocation? Priceless. 2. The cash to take our kids on a big trip. All their friends seem to be going. All our clients went to the Dominican Republic or Spain this year. 3. To believe we matter. We want to help people in measurable ways that prove our worth. At the end of our careers, we want a legacy that's tangible. 4. To control our schedules. A handle on time means less stress. We don't want to fall into our clients' stressful work patterns. We're massage therapists, but we're also normal humans if you look closely. 5. A calm space devoid of noise pollution. It's bad when a jackhammer starts up outside your clinic. It's really bad when an argument between your fellow therapists interrupts your session. 6. Clients who respect our time. Time-conscious clients are treasures. 7. A few more hours in the day to allow for naps, paperwork, a leisurely lunch, and general goofing off. We're massage therapists, but we're also normal humans if you look closely. 8. An industrial washer and dryer, preferably with someone else hauling the sheets and towels in and out, in and out, in and out until we retire or drop. 9. Someone to squeeze our hands and yank on them to distract compressed wrist joints every day. This is why I had children. 10. Hope for the future. Will economic collapse, the post-peak oil production crisis, the world food crisis, the world flu pandemic, and global warming leave any room for ordinary folks to get a massage? 11. Options. We may not want to retire, but we all want the freedom to retire if we change our minds. 12. More clients. That attained, we want fewer clients. Then we want more time off but never feel we can get away from the clinic for long. 13. A massage. A long, delicious massage where I'm finally the one who's horizontal. Give extra care and attention to my hands. Let me float, then let me be. I want the skill of your kind hands, the pleasure of your company, and, just for this hour, not a word out of you. massage therapist and his second year as a columnist for Massage & Bodywork. The editors have decided he's a lovable cynic. Contact him at consciousbodywork@ This is Robert Chute's 16th year as a 136 massage & bodywork september/october 2009

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