The Numb-ass 2000

Customer 1: “I want a paddle. Do they have paddles here?”

Customer 2: [noticing a textured silicone paddle on the back counter] “Here’s one.”

Customer 1: “Huh.” [to me] “Is this a good paddle?”

Me: “It’s a very good paddle.”

Customer 1: “Well, what’s so special about it? Is it magic?”

Me: “I certainly think so.”

Customer 1: [smirking] “Oh, yeah? What’s its magical power?”

Me: “It’ll turn you into my bitch.”

Customer 1: “…”

Customer 2: “I’ll take it.

As previously mentioned, I am rarely witty when I need to be, so here’s to mouthing off with proper timing for a change. The fact that I got a sale out of it is just gravy.

My Own Hot Take on Open Container Laws

Straight Girl: “I’d like some amyl nitrate, please.”

Me: “Ah. Well, it would be illegal for us to sell amyl nitrate for recreational purposes, but we do carry a fine selection of solvents and polish removers.”

Straight Girl: [scrutinizing the solvents display] “Are these just what you have today?”

[Inner Me: This isn’t a farmers market, Rebessica.]

Me: “These are… what we have in stock.”

[She makes a selection and leaves, at which point a lesbian couple enters the store.]

Lesbian 1: [pointing to the solvents] “What are these? What did she just buy?”

Me: “These are solvents and polish removers.”

Lesbian 1: “So what are they for?”

Me: “Definitely not recreational purposes. But if one were to use them recreationally, one would inhale them, which would cause a brief sense of euphoria and muscle relaxation.”

Lesbian 1: “Okay… but why?”

Me: “Because afterwards, you’d be able to fit almost anything in your butt.”

Lesbian 1: “Ooh! Which ones should we try?” [to her partner] “Which ones do we want?”

Lesbian 2: “Wait… how do you use them again?”

Lesbian 1: “You drink them.”

Me: “Please don’t drink them. If you were going to use them recreationally — which, again, would be illegal — you would inhale them.”

Lesbian 2: “I don’t know. I’m nervous about this.”

Random Gay Dude: [bounding across the store, bottle of solvents in hand] “Here! Try mine!”


Everyone: “…”

Me: “We’re not opening any solvents in the store. If you’ve never used them before, I recommend Rush, which will be fairly mild compared to the other brands.”

[They briefly confer, then agree to buy the Rush. As they exit, a terribly pretty twink enters the store, holding a bottle of Double Scorpio Emerald with his thumb over the top.]

Twink: “Can you give me another one of these?”

Me: “Can I… give you one?”

Twink: “Uh-huh. I lost the cap to this one.”

Me: “I can’t give you another, but I can sell you one.”

Twink: [rolling his eyes] “That’s what I meant.”

Me: “Okay. That’ll be $21.64.”

[He sets the bottle on the counter and reaches for his wallet. The cap is indeed missing, and the store quickly fills with the refreshing aroma of eucalyptus.]


Twink: “Huh?”

Me: [with a hand over my nose and mouth] “Cover it back up, take it outside to the patio, and throw it away.”

Twink: “Ugh. Fine.”

[He steps into the bar and tosses the bottle in the trashcan next to the door.]

Twink: “Can I have another one now?”

There’s a common myth that koalas are constantly intoxicated from eating fermented eucalyptus leaves. While it’s patently untrue, it was pretty much the only thing I could think about as I wiped down the counter and attempted to breathe through my eyes.

I’m going to make a new sign that says, “No solvents available until I recover from selling them.” And maybe another that says, “If you’ll look to your left, you’ll notice we also sell leather.” Just, y’know, in case anyone’s actually interested in it.

I’m changing my scene name from Thumper to either Crypt-Keeper or Das Vampyr.

[Two preppies start to enter the store, but end up just standing in the doorway, holding each other and peering around with trepidation in their eyes.]

Preppy 1: “Are those… are those onesies?”

Preppy 2: “I think so.”

Preppy 1: “Are onesies fetish?”

Preppy 2: “I… I don’t know.”

Preppy 1: “…”

Preppy 2: “I just don’t know.”

[They freak out and scurry back into the bar. Then, later…]

Customer: “May I try on a cock ring?”

Me: “Go for it.”

Customer: “Oh, God… people actually try them on?!”

[He leaps away from the display, flails helplessly for a moment, then runs out of the store.]

So I can’t tell if their fear is actually making me more youthful, or if it’s just giving me a bump of energy like a B12 shot, but either way, I look forward to feasting on the dread of more tourists in the future. It’s a lot more satisfying than dealing with the ones who just come in to giggle.

Filthy Lucre

Customer: “I’d like a bottle of Max Impact, please.”

Me: “Sure! That’ll be $24.89.”

Customer: [counting out ones] “Heh. It’s my stripper money.”

[I chuckle. He hands me a wad of cash.]

Customer: “No, really. I’m a stripper. This all came out of my g-string.”

Me: “…”

Customer: “The ladies at the bank openly judge me whenever I make a deposit. And oh, hey, look! Someone tipped me a two-dollar bill.”

You know, I have not led a sheltered life, and I have many wonderful friends who make their livings in and around the sex industry, but still… I really don’t need to know when I’m handling sweaty junk-money. Not even when it’s in unusual denominations.

My novelty hand sanitizer is getting such a workout tonight, you guys.

I Knew My Background in Graphic Design Would Pay Off Eventually

Ben: “How’s your night going?”


Ben: “…”

Me: “I may have a resentment.”

In an attempt to give me something constructive to focus on, Ben suggested I make a small, tactful sign for the register, which would hopefully circumvent any trite attempts at humor and/or wearisome questions. Inspired, I put pen to cardstock, and a few minutes later, I had an array of informative options ready to go:




I feel back in control of my life already.

PS: Ben’s concept for a sign was, “One in 10 Double Scorpio bottles contains an actual scorpion. Please understand our refusal to open them in the store.” This is why he’s the idea guy.

Repeat Business

[The always dapper Ty and his equally fanciable husband Michael have stopped by to say hello, and we’re having a lovely exchange on the dos and don’ts of impact play, when a visibly dissatisfied customer flounces in and interrupts.]

Customer: “I have a complaint.”

Me: “Yes?”

Customer: “I bought some poppers here last week…”

Me: “Solvents.”

Customer: “… and they were not good at all.”

Me: “Which solvents were they?”

Customer: [pointing to the Double Scorpio fridge behind the counter] “Those. The red poppers.”

Me: “Solvents.”

Customer: “They didn’t work. My butthole stayed tight.”

Me: “I’m sorry to hear that.”

Customer: “So which poppers are better?”

Me: “Solvents.”

Customer: “AARGH. Whatever you call them.”

Me: “We call them solvents.”

Customer: “So which… solvents… are better?”

Me: “Try the Amsterdam.”

Customer: “Fine. I’ll come back next week and get those.”

[He flounces out.]

Ty: “…”

Michael: “…”


Lord of the Boiler Plate

Customer: “Hey there! Can I try on this cock ring?”

Me: “Sure. The dressing room is right behind those curtains.”

Customer: “… Oh. I was… um, I was just joking.”

Me: [smiling sadly] “Yeah. I know.”

For my fellow retail workers who have led cleaner lives, “Can I try on this cock ring?” is the leather and fetishwear equivalent of “No price tag? Then it must be free!” The linguistics may differ, but the shared experience of surviving a ceaseless barrage of hackneyed jokes is almost initiatory.

Having said that, I really don’t know if there’s anything in mainstream sales comparable to “Aren’t you going to make sure this cock ring fits me properly?” But if there is, I’ll bet you anything that golf pants are involved.