Now, we’re all mature ladies here, I’m sure over the decades we’ve all at one time or another popped into an adult shop. When I was in my twenties, and immature, I would go with girlfriends to such shops in London, they didn’t have such shops in Dublin in the 80’s. Maybe they did but I never came across any.
As young women we’d pop into the odd Adult shop and be amazed at the clientele such shops had, also the stock to be fair was very limited by todays standard. Video tapes with photocopied covers high on shelves. Plastic bags with blow up dolls who had raunchy names like ‘licky Lilly’ ‘Sexy Lexi’ and so and so forth, you know where I’m going with this. There was the odd pink plastic willy and some magazines. The absolute innocence of it all. Actually at the time I thought it was scandalous and my friends would giggle with embarrassment. We never bought anything, ever, what would our parents think if we’d arrived home with a plastic pink willy.
I would have been marched to confession and my grandmother would have stood outside just to make sure I’d told the priest everything and then she’d sit while I did my penance, reminding me all the while that ‘good catholic girls’ don’t go to places like that.
I hadn’t been into an adult shop in decades and the truth of the matter was I hadn’t intended going into one. But it was work, and truly, popped the address into google maps and I was inside the shop before I realised where I was. Well before I realised it was an adult shop.
‘Have a look around I’ll be a few minutes’ the very attractive slightly older man behind the counter told me.
Wandering away from the cash desk I thought I’d have a look a the clothes racks, it all looked very colourful. Must be some sort of costume shop I’m thought to myself in my nativity.
There were shelves of black shiny platform boots, plastic masks, whips and gloves. There were display units with all sorts of plastic toys, toys I’d never seen before. Packets of ball bearings, I couldn’t take it all in.
Oh dear god it was an ‘Adult shop’ Oh no.. was this a hot flush or pure embarrassment.
‘Do you enjoy erotica’
Feck he was behind me and I was glowing like a Christmas tree.
‘Emm…’ nothing I could say nothing
‘We’ve got an extensive collection of books’ he boasted, seriously he was boasting
Books, Books what class of eejit was coming in here to buy feckin books.
‘It’s been a long time since I was in a shop like this, actually I’ve never been in a shop quite like this’
‘Emm the 80’s in London long time ago, they’ve changed’
Then an awkward silence followed, so I though I’d break the ice, God I wished Id had some ice I was about to pass out with the heat.
‘See at least you sell something useful. Ball bearings’
The fecker laughed at me, laughed out loud.
‘They’re not ball bearings’ he took a pack of three off the shelf and handed me them to me. The looked like ball bearings to me. I fumbled for my glasses and before I could retrieve them from my bag he started to explain.
‘Ladies place them inside of themselves and when they walk. well, it’s sensual’ he explained.
What woman in their right mind would do such a thing, it was tosh. Firstly if it was and I can assure you it wont be me, but if it was I’d end up trying to walk with my legs together as tightly as possible, what’s sensual about that, surly they’d make a clanking noise. Or even worse, what if I sneezed, they’d shoot out of me like missiles injuring innocent passerby’s.
‘Not really my thing’ I was now sweating and needed to get out of here, because between you and me it was like a David Lynch film and I was in the middle of it.
‘We have something for women of all ages even mature women’
Well the cheek ‘mature women’
‘Do you enjoy S&M ?’
I wasn’t exactly sure what that entailed.
He pulled a plastic or should I say PVC suit off a hanger, he hung it over his arm like he was showing me a pair of jeans.
It looked like some sort of weight loss device. I just wanted him to stop talking and exit this David Lynch film as quickly as possible.
This wasn’t like the 80’s when these type of shops were funny this wasn’t funny and I wasn’t amused. The sexy nurse and naughty police woman outfits were replaced by pvc gimp suits.
Oh God I was menopausal and grumpy that’s what I was.
Now I was in full panic mode and scrambling for excuses not tot take him on as a client.
‘We have an assortment of toys and furniture to give women of any age pleasure’ he winked .. he bloody winked at me.. he could feel my discomfort and I was still glowing with such force I could have powered my Ipad from myself.
His phone buzzed and I was relieved. I could make my escape while he was occupied on his phone.
As he was chatting I made my way to the door and out onto the street where the cool air comforted me. I didn’t return and I won’t be returning unless it’s with a gaggle of ladies my own age when I can put on my glasses and read the instructions on Adult Toys and laugh about ball bearings and pink plastic willies.
The Joy of an adult shop.