For The Man Who Has Everything

It’s been nearly a year since I spoke with Robert, the curator and webmaster behind the delightful vintage erotica archive called Delta of Venus. At the time, Robert had asked me about my own collection of yesteryear’s smut. At the time I demurred — in part because it just didn’t seem like the right time. (I’m not exactly known for my brevity, am I. And I felt like there was already a lot of “me” in that interview!) But also because I am not very good at articulating just what my collection is all about.

I suppose many collectors are often trying to answer that “What’s this all about, anyway?” question as they go about the curation, preservation, display, and the unfortunate necessity of dusting off their collection. I know it’s all about sex, sex history, sex work. But that seems too simple, too generic. I feel there’s something more being addressed here that I just can’t put my finger on…

The inability to really answer what my collection is all about has bothered me for quite some time. As a collection is made up of many parts, I thought it might be easier to begin looking at individual items.

This first entry may seem too silly to really inspire any “collector’s thoughts” about human sexuality in culture. It’s a smallish item, about 8 inches wide. And it’s a souvenir from a rather innocuous place, The Eternal Tree House. Though, one rather gets the idea this little tchotchke was available for wholesale purchase by any little tourist trap which agreed to pay the price and have its name stamped inside it.

The center cover piece reads, “For the man who has everything,” followed by the directive to “lift here.” Upon lifting, one finds a hot pink decal of a saucy little minx of a woman next to a sign of sorts which reads, “Call Girl Credit Card.” There’s even a place for the gentleman’s signature and an obligatory set of numbers to make it all look like a real credit card. (There’s also a metal staple there, presumably to help keep the flimsy fabric-type-masking-tape hinge from being stressed.)

[Sorry about wiggly video; trickier to do while keeping The Girls out of the shot than I thought!]

The joke, of course, is that the man who has “everything” is always looking for a good time. Only to me, it’s all so… Misplaced.

This kitschy piece, once sold at a classic staple of Americana — a family travel spot now known as a roadside attraction, seems to be more of a private gag gift, yes? Yet there are holes indicating this item should be hung on the wall. Presumably so the male “credit card holder” can display it and invite all who visit to be in on the joke too. Much to his own chagrin, I suppose. Either as a sign of his status as a man cuckolded by marriage or just to lament, in general, that he’d never really get to enjoy the services of a professional sex worker. It’s like the gift that keeps humiliating?

But anyway, a man — a married man, is supposed to hang this on the wall. Where? In his home, where his children can see? Was that part of the “joke” — that one would have to turn red-faced and then stammer some sort of story to their kids? Or was he to hang it on the wall in his office, where his coworkers could guffaw and then posture in manly ways about what and who they would do — until a wife stops by…

Or am I entirely wrong here. Was this supposed to be a gag gift for say, your brother? Perhaps a bachelor brother? Was this a way for men to express envy whilst any women folk nearby could see it as an invite to begin that whole, “When are you getting married, anyway?” conversation?

Oh, I know, I know; it’s one of those tacky retro gag gifts. I ought not put too much thought into it… But it just seems… Sad.

Perhaps it’s because I’m a sex worker. I know the pains of clients who seek sex work services — and toying with them about being able to go on a self-indulgent spree seems cruel (even without the above-described humiliations).

How cool would it be if there was such a thing as a call girl credit card? Obviously, we’d need to do the right thing and decriminalize sex work first… But even a credit card for currently legal sex services (including phone sex, of course!), would be awesome! Or even just gift cards or gift certificates.

Some people think giving gift certificates is the laziest way to give a gift. I utterly disagree. It allows a person to get exactly what they want. For example, I don’t trust anyone to be able to find me the perfect jeans for my lovely ass. Or up-top either — finding a dress or blouse that will accommodate The Girls could nearly be a full-time job! So wouldn’t it be lovely to be able to give a man the gift of good health, of a good night’s sleep, of companionship and pleasure… Oh, how I wish we could offer gift certificates or credit cards of some sort for clients at Peck & Call Girls!

But, sadly, I know this can’t happen. Not right now. All-too-well I know the pains of the so-called “morality” involved in the financial world. Banks would never ever issue such a card. Not even for legal sex work. Adult businesses suffer terribly from Visa et al. NiteFlirt doesn’t even offer gift certificates. *sigh*

But a girl can dream…

So too can the man who already has everything. *wink*

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