Sex shop stories

Sex shop
If you’ve ever been inside one of Philadelphia’s sex shops then you know the lay of the land and people that frequent. But you probably never see it from the angle of the person ringing you up. | Image courtesy: PxHere

It’s about 1:30 am, and the faint screams of drunken white chicks can be heard near the front door, inducing a physical cringe and awareness of the chaos that is about to enter the sex shop.

This chaos is second only to the bridal parties that consider it exotic to hang out in the Gayborhood bars. 

Customers in line either sigh or are too far focused on making a choice for lube and video head cleaner to really care – for the night is only just getting started. 

This is just the usual activity at the local 24/7 sex shop, maybe the last of its kind as everything is going the high-end boutique route or the privacy of home is preferred. This shop has only made a slight change – there are no longer video booths, and that strong scent of semen and bleach that used to permeate the place is long gone. The trade is the old booth area now contains a fantastic choice of underwear, jocks and thongs suiting the modern times of nightly sex activities. 

On a daily, some of the old-school customers come in seeking the relief of a booth and are met with disappointment, while others settle on endless browsing of the DVD section and leave with their memories to go jerk off in a miscellaneous alley in the area if a sale isn’t made. Often people are more surprised we have DVDs in general, we still have magazines, and people still pay for porn. 

Some might consider working in a sex shop unusual, but really it is no different than the usual retail with the focus being to help people to fuck better or look amazing while getting fucked. From personal experience, being on the staff of this particular shop feels more like being a budget sex therapist. It is not all people coming in and buying dildos – they ask questions about the dildos, about the materials, is it firm, is it soft, do you have a bigger one? Does it come in other colors? Is this good for anal? What type of lube should be used? 

“Some might consider working in a sex shop unusual, but really it is no different than the usual retail with the focus being to help people to fuck better or look amazing while getting fucked.”

A favorite moment, in particular, was aiding an older lady looking to add some items to her collection. She was from out of town and very unassuming, but it is important to note that those with some of the most exciting bed lives are the ones who are most inconspicuous. She asked to see some items from the locked case filled with whips, floggers, spankers and crops, but they were not so much her desire of the night. 

As the conversation ensued and as personal information spilled, she fixated a bit on the medical items mostly consisting of speculums, sounds and a few pinwheels. She asked to handle the speculums and already admitted to owning a few small ones. She was looking for something that could go larger. 

Jokingly, the very large horse speculum was retrieved from a different case, her face lit and the most honest thing ever said in the shop came from her mouth, “I like to be stretched.” 

That being said, she also purchased a nine-inch very, very girthy dildo for her husband with the reasoning being that his dick does not work so well anymore so he gets his jollies in a different form and was beyond the help of pills. 

For the longest time (no pun intended) sex shops catered primarily to male customers. However, there are more and more items that have women’s interests at heart. | Image: David Anderson

Now, some of the most amusing things are the herbal supplements that are sold. These pills are more or less OTC Viagra, and if one has ever questioned if they work, enough of them get sold so there is feedback on which ones work best. There have been articles on the mysteries of the pills, but mostly besides the occasional headache, they are safe and very much boner-inducing. Yes, they are purchased by older gentlemen who might need some help to get their dicks kick-started and also very much purchased by younger men ready for all-night fuck fests or cruising or a trip to the bath house. Fleshlight + Pill + Lube combinations have also been sold to the guys that just like to go at it alone. 

Women now also are not left out of the pill game, and they are beginning to sell just as well. Also, to note, originally this shop wasn’t so tuned to women, but it is garnering a change. Doesn’t prevent the occasional comment “when did they start letting straight women work here,” but if it’s 3am and a drunk dude is trying to buy video head cleaners from you, such comments get shrugged off. Drunk people are a common occurrence as much as homeless people who try to jerk off in their pants in the DVD section. That is just the effect of having a place open 24/7.

Often the question is asked why the place is open 24/7, and after working at the establishment for a few months, it has the traffic to be open 24/7. People are always fucking … always. The question is usually asked by the very normal individuals who are not mature enough to fathom that people fuck all the time. 

Just like the loud stampede of white girls, there are the jersey-wearing jocks who come in, intoxicated, and ask, “What’s the biggest dildo you have in the store?” They are shown the largest, and blush on the way out. Maybe taking out a new perspective or realizing an innermost desire. The longest item is “The Goose,” and the grittiest item is the “Red Boy,” by the way, for those curious. 

Whatever meets a person’s fancy, there is no judgment, and though society is entering the stages of being more open and acceptable, there are still individuals who enter the shop and have to loudly complain that their girlfriend has sent them to buy an item. Once a man insisted that his woman wanted a dildo, and he was huffing and puffing about having to be in a sex shop. Eventually, he settled on an item without asking the staff for recommendations, a thing that most men who are purchasing for their women do. He gets rung up, huffing and puffing, and left everyone else in the shop with a good laugh. It was agreed that if he wanted to buy a giant dildo for himself it was unnecessary to announce it to the shop. This happens often and is always comical. 

Our writer says while the appearance can seem taboo, especially to conservative types, shops like these are a great place for people to have open dialogue about their sex life. | Image: David Len

That aside, the shop is a place where people can express themselves or have very open conversations with staff or with each other. This can be a bit too open sometimes. I failed to mention that horse speculum lady did have a proposition for coming back to her hotel room to aid in her stretching fun. Much of it can be taken with a grain of salt, such as individuals wanting a perverse conversation without buying anything – they get shooed away and everything continues. 

There is a constant slew of phone calls, especially late at night with heavy breathing or asking, “Do you have any toys for dirty girls” in a male voice or general prank calls. Once again, these are just answered straight-faced because it is to be expected. Out of any of the trouble that shop could have or has had, the only thing ever really enforced is that people should stop coming in and asking for poppers – it is called video head cleaner.

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