Body Business At Tokyo House

Sam Corey is making a fortune from scantily clad girls, body oil, and talcum powder. For a man who almost became a priest, is that enough?

Samuel C. Corey of San Antonio, Texas, was once described by a lady reporter as “that humongous, huge person,” and Sam himself certainly fits that bill. His round, puffy, impish face, graced by a well-trimmed black mustache, sits precariously atop a set of thick shoulders which themselves are atop an immense chest which, for its part, recedes into a protruding, undulating, almost unfathomable belly. His trousers sink gradually through the day under the weight of that belly until their crotch hangs so low it rubs against his knees. In the office of Sam’s extraordinarily lucrative business he is as likely to be found wearing thongs and voluminous jockey shorts as he is a business suit. He smokes cigars, pulling them out of his mouth with stubby fat fingers, gesturing with a wave of cigar-filled hand, then sticking the cigar back in his mouth and puffing contentedly whether the thing is lit or not.

Sam runs the Tokyo House massage parlors where they answer the phone, “We love you for calling Tokyo House.” Sam’s parlors are, according to Sam, places where perfectly nice girls who have, also according to Sam, “all the grace, charm, intelligence, and sensuality of the highest paid New York call girl” massage, and massage only where the law would allow, gentlemen made weary by the cares of the world. Those weary gentlemen, after perusing a sheet called “Tokyo House Menu,” pay either $10 for THE NOONER, a “quickie” but “hard penetrating massage”; or $20 for MOTHER SUPERIOR’S FROLIC after which “you’ll understand why Mother Superior polevaulted the convent wall”; or $25 for THE WORKS, an hour experience conceived when the “mind of Western man ingeniously fused the centuries of Oriental tradition in massage with the best in American sensate experience.” How is this done? “The masseuse gets on the table with the customer and massages with her toes and feet in true Oriental style!!!”

“I’m very selective in the girls I hire,” Sam says leaning back in the chair behind his desk. On the walls around him are a few framed documents and pictures of his wife and two kids. On the desk before him his clip-on tie has been casually tossed across an unorganized pile of papers, notes, clippings, files, and folders. “I insist on beautiful legs,” Sam goes on. “The girls who want to work here must come to their interviews in Hot Pants.” (Hot Pants evidently mean a lot to Sam. During his campaign for mayor of San Antonio last spring— a campaign whose principal slogan was “Let’s put the nitty gritty before the city”— one of Sam’s promises to the voting public was that the mayor’s limousine would be chauffeured by a “beautiful chick” wearing you’ve already guessed what.)

But Sam looks for other things in his girls besides good legs. “They must have a real liking for men,” Sam says, breaking into a grin that makes his round face look like a naughty pumpkin. “In fact it’s got to be more than a liking. They have to enjoy pampering, pleasing, and being subservient to men. That’s why gay girls don’t qualify. But my girls also have to know how to resist sexual advances. And then I teach them everything they need to know to give men pleasure. They learn all the techniques of massage, they learn how to dress, how to talk, how to walk. Then, after all that training is done, I give them my personal course in the Psychology of Men.” Sam readjusts the bulk of his belly, his thonged feet sprawl out in front of him, a cigar wilts in the corner of his mouth. He grins. It is the same naughty grin as before, the same one that appeared when he announced for mayor. It says, “Now look, not everything I do is 100 per cent serious.”

Sam Corey was born on a summer day 40 years ago in the small town of Mansfield, Louisiana. Not too long after that his family moved to San Antonio which Sam has since called home. In 1950 he graduated from Central Catholic High School and embarked on a career which many might call contradictory but which Sam sees as one of consistent and dedicated service. The year following his high school graduation he became a novitiate in the Society of Mary, a Catholic teaching order, and remained in the order for six years. Along the way he acquired a B. A. from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio. After spending the better part of his young manhood in the religious life, he decided in 1957 that a priest’s life was not what he wanted and left the order. He taught school for the next eight years and after earning an M. A. from Trinity University, he was for two years a professor of American History at San Antonio Junior College.

Toward the end of his teaching career Sam met and later married the former Rita Frankenfield, a funny, earthy registered nurse whom Sam is the first to credit for her help in his next two operations. The first was a nursing home, The Arms of Mercy, which Sam and his wife ran for five years. But in June of 1970, while Sam was at a convention in Vancouver, he received his first massage from a masseuse in a local parlor. “I realized immediately what a wonderful service this was,” Sam says. “I knew right then that I wanted to make those services available in San Antonio. I came home, sold the nursing home, and started Tokyo House. My wife was my first employee.”

Sam was on to something all right. Now, barely three years since he opened his first parlor in San Antonio, his business has expanded to include one location in Richardson, three in Irving, and another on the way in Oklahoma City. Sam has brought a case against the City of Dallas to strike down their law prohibiting members of the opposite sex from massaging one another. If he wins, there will be

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