I'm not going to lie, when I heard that Ash Armand from Showtime's "Gigolos" was going to come and give me a massage, the dirty jokes in my head flew at a rapid pace. Even though he is a professional massage therapist, I joked with my friends about how maybe I'd "get some," I told my dad about it and he seemed more than a little concerned, and even comedian Jay Mohr who set up this experience for me (Thanks Jay!) thought I might have been serious about a "happy ending" as well. I was obviously joking because what I really wanted was a free massage while learning more about this "gigolo." You know, in case this whole writing thing doesn't work out. (KIDDING, dad.)
What happened when Ash knocked on the door to sit and talk to me turned out to be completely eye-opening and actually changed my views on his "TV profession." You see, he is much more than a gorgeous face. (Although it is sooo stunning.) He happens to have a beautiful mind, is a total entrepreneur, and has a wicked sense of humor to boot. Oh, and his massages are off the charts. Just trust me on that one.
OC Weekly (Ali Lerman): So do tell, how exactly did you get into this line of work?
Ash Armand: Well actually, Garren James found me. I used to model in New York and in Miami so I had a model profile up on one of those modeling sites. He contacted me one day and told me about his business "Cowboys 4 Angels" and I was just curious. I responded to him just to meet up so I could pick his brain and see what they were up to. To see if it was even real or if it was a joke. I met him and he was super cool and very intelligent. We really hit it off so I was like, well, I'll give it a shot. That's really how it started!
Forgive me if I sound naïve but, did you ever freak out like, oh my god I'm going to be screwing strangers?
I think in a way, the show portrays us that way but at the end of the day, that's illegal. The only thing they are really contracting us for is our time. They have to sign a contract and it's very clear. After that if something happens, it happens. To be perfectly honest, it doesn't happen all of the time. The show is a show though. At the end of the day, I'd say Gigolos is kind of like a soft-porn/comedy. It's so crazy and so out of the norm I think. Plus it's such a new industry because there has always been a men for men thing. You remember that show called, "Hung?" I think that show spun curiosity in peoples mind like, are there really straight male escorts out there? Then everything just happened at the same time. Garren put up his site and because of the show "Hung," The Tyra Banks Show was looking for the real deal. Then they found him and invited him to come on the show. She was a little harsh to him but people got to see that there is in fact a real agency out there like this. It got women to thinking, why shouldn't we have the same service men do?
OK so I know you said it doesn't happen all of the time but, what if you meet up with some beast of a chick and you're like, there is no way I'm mounting that! They wouldn't film that right?
[Laughs.] Well they're good enough to let you know who's going to be on the show. But sometimes, there are only a certain amount of people that are available to film so then you know, you go along with it. I also try to find the beauty in everybody, you know? You do still want to be respectful and make them feel amazing. I mean, that's what they are hiring you for. You're not going to end up in a romantic relationship at the end of the day so you do the best you can. [Laughs.]Ha. Well put. It does seem like people are loving Gigolos and even, dare I say, learning something from it?
Oh for sure! We hear that couples often watch the show together. They get to laugh, they get a little horny, and then they have sex after. It's like a little build up for them.
So you might actually be helping people's sex lives with this show.
Exactly! And the cool thing about the show is that they touch on all different types of things. A little S&M, all types of kinks and fetishes, Tantra, Kama Sutra, and role play. It gives people different things to spark up their own sex lives with whoever they're having sex with. It's quite educational too because it's not done in a way that is shoving it in your face. It sparks people's curiosity.
I hope the answer here is "no" but, does anyone in your family watch the show?
Oh thank god they don't! [Laughs.] It would be a little uncomfortable I think. I know a few people who are close to me that watch it that will tell me about it and I'm like, you really shouldn't be watching it. That's so awkward! [Laughs.]
Right?? I saw on your website that you were working on some "empowering tools." What exactly does that mean?
I'm actually working on putting out stuff for couples to help them in their sex lives. That actually excites me more than teaching guys to be better because some of those guys who do that are pick-up artists. I hate people who go around and teach guys to be bigger douchebags, you know what I mean? I want to help couples make their sex lives better so for a thousand nights they can be different people or live different fantasies. That way they can fall in love with each other over and over again. I think the reason a lot of relationships fall out is because it's not fresh, they get bored, and their mind starts wondering.
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And then they call a Gigolo?
Hey, that could be the case! [Laughs.]
Be sure to check your local listings to tune into Showtime's Gigolos. For more info on Ash, go to his website www.AshArmand.com, his fan page on Facebook, follow him on Instagram and on Twitter @AshArmand1.
See also: Steve-O Found a Way to Work Manginas Into His Stand-Up Comedy 10 Douchiest Guitarists of All Time 10 Douchiest Drummers of All Time Follow us on Twitter @OCWeeklyMusic and like us on Facebook at Heard Mentality and follow the author on Twitter @AliNotAlli.