BEATTY, Nev. - A brothel in a Nevada desert town has hired the state's first male prostitute, a muscular college dropout who abandoned a brief stint as a porn actor in Los Angeles to become the only legal gigolo in the United States.
The Shady Lady Ranch successfully won state and county approval to clear the way for the "prostidude," as Nevada's newest sex worker is already being called. After a slow first week on the job, his first appointments are scheduled for this weekend.
The male prostitute - known as "Markus" - has quickly become the center of attention in Nevada's brothel industry.
He has been criticized by female counterparts for not being willing to have sex with men. And he created a dustup after telling Details Magazine that his pioneering role in the sex business was "just the same" as civil rights icon Rosa Parks refusing to give up her seat and move to the back of the bus. Not surprisingly, he has been forbidden from doing interviews after the remarks.
Competing brothel owners also fret that hiring gigolos in Nevada will bring unwanted scrutiny from state officials, potentially tempting them to make prostitution illegal. The competitors have also expressed concerns about sexually transmitted diseases, and worry that female customers can't be inspected as carefully as men are before sex.
Markus, 25, described himself as a well-read college dropout and former U.S. Marine from Alabama. He said he drove to Los Angeles to become a porn actor and left after filming two scenes, the first about a month ago. He said he ended up in a homeless shelter near Santa Monica, Calif., after being unable to find another job.
Shady Lady madam Bobbi Davis picked him from about 10 potential hires culled from hundreds of applications, many featuring crude inquiries, according to her husband and co-owner Jim. Part of Markus' appeal was that he was not afraid to deal with heavy publicity.
"Whichever woman may walk through that door, she's appreciated," Markus said in his Details interview. "A surrogate lover will love that woman for a whole hour, or however much we charge here, and she'll leave feeling much more empowered and much more confident in herself."
Jim Davis told The Associated Press that after reading the article, he and his wife decided that Markus doing interviews was bad for business. Bobbi Davis declined an interview with the AP.