Nov 1, 2001 at 2:06 pm

I was cleaning up my computer files when I came across this item. I can't believe I wrote this more than six years ago. I cut out a little bit because it was pretty long, but I still believe every word of it.

We divas know that women are making it on their own in every profession. One of the oldest and least stressful means of support is mistressing. A mistress is an equal opportunity occupation. You can be old, young, fat, ugly, a bright light or a dim bulb. The only qualification needed to be a mistress is NOT to be the "master's" wife. To be a great mistress, however, requires a little advice.

Things you need to know about being a mistress can be divided into three categories.

Those would be children, the house and, the ultimate destination, the bedroom.

CHILDREN: Don't have any. If they are grown and gone, fine. If you have young ones, it's a no-no because eventually they will interfere. Children make you seem common, ordinary and — God forbid — domestic. If you have time to take care of kids, then you don't have time for him. Also children may remind him of life at home. It's OK to have a pet, preferably a cat or dog. Even better if the pet has an accident on the carpet in your lover's presence. It indicates that you did not have time to properly train the animal, because you were busy doing other mysterious mistress activities.

YOUR HOUSE: Dishes in the sink are a must. A clean house is a sign of domesticity and may remind him of his wife. A sink full of glasses makes sense because you always have a drink ready for your lover when he arrives. Eventually you will have to wash the glasses, but do it alone. Never have dishwashing liquid or sponges in sight: That will make him think the mistress fairy cleans while you sleep.

The rest of the house should be clean but not immaculate. A clean bathroom is essential. After all, you're not a pig. Plus you may have to shower with him in there, and a bathtub ring will not do. The bedroom should convey the right atmosphere. Stuffed animals indicate you are still childlike and playful. A few bottles of moisturizer and make-up show him that, yes, you are beautiful, but it does take a little effort. The bed, for the few times you'll actually do it there, should be clean but inviting. Keep fruit or candy next to the bed at all times because not all things naturally taste delicious.

YOUR BEDROOM (actually, How To Act There). The secret to keeping your lover coming back for more is not what's hidden between your legs, but those appendages on either side of your head. The key is to listen. When your man says, "My wife never gives me blow-jobs anymore," that is your cue to put on your knee pads. In those cases, you don't even have to be good. That fact he's getting it at all will make any effort on your part redeemable. There are several tips, however, to enhance your performance. A mentholated cough drop in your mouth can provide a unique cooking sensation especially when you exhale on his tallywhacker. If you have the capacity to remove any or all of your teeth, please do so. (Some men like a little teeth action, but be sure to ask.)

Of course, you won't spend all of your time on your knees. The key is to be different than his wife. If the spouse is a wild, swinging from the chandeliers kind of sex, you should be a semi-catatonic mannequin in the missionary position. The key is to give him a break from his usual routine.

There's plenty more to be learned about being a great mistress. Just remember to be available. Oh, and it wouldn't hurt to find a man first.