Your answer to "Wanna Get Off Before We're Legal" [June 30], those two young girls who want to get their hands on vibrators, was inadequate. Why didn't you advise them to order something out of a catalog? The Good Vibrations catalog has everything they're looking for. Surely they can't card over the phone.
Mail Order Fan
"We can't card over the phone, that's true," said Carol Queen, director of continuing education at San Francisco's world-famous sex shop Good Vibrations. "But we do require people who order stuff from our catalog or on our Web site [www.goodvibes.com] to indicate that they are over 21." Catalog shoppers have to sign a statement that they're over 21, Web shoppers have to click on a banner that says, "Yes, I am at least 21."
But, hey, wait a minute! What's to stop 15-year-olds from clicking on the "Yes, I'm at least 21" button or signing a statement that they're over 21? "Only their own sense of truthfulness," said Queen. "We ask people to assure us that they're 21, but there isn't any further enforcement that we can feasibly do." Has the store ever gotten into trouble after selling vibrators to some scheming 15-year-old liar? "I don't think we've ever had to deal with that situation."
Other than committing fraud, what does Good Vibrations recommend youngsters in need of vibrators do? "If this young woman has a comfortable enough relationship with an older person," Queen said, "they could ask that person to do the shopping. We have women come in and buy vibrators with their daughters all the time. It's really kind of moving and sweet. I mean, our mothers didn't buy us vibrators!"
Shame on you, Dan Savage! How could you have overlooked the Hitachi Magic Wand in your response to "Wanna Get Off Before We're Legal" [June 30]?! Hitachi makes a "household" personal massager that's legendary among women. In the housewife underground these "personal massagers" are known as secret vibrators. They're totally legit and legal for any 15-year-old to buy. WGOBWL just needs to trek on down to your local Wal-Mart and pick out one you like.
It just so happens that I own a Hitachi Magic Wand, so I'm living proof that this "personal massager" has a following among men, too. While vibrating "personal massage" units are available in some department stores, none of the three I called -- a Walgreens in Chicago, a Wal-Mart in Seattle, and a Sears in Dallas -- carried Hitachi Magic Wands.
But if these girls wanna get their hands on good, cheap, reliable vibrators, I recommend they head to the nearest Toys "R" Us. There they will find numerous vibrating plush toys -- the most famous being Tickle Me Elmo -- that they can legally purchase, take home, and dismember. Inside each of these dolls is a little white plastic vibrator that gives off a strong sensation when squeezed. Unfortunately, the Tickle Me Elmo's vibrator has a little speaker that says, "Ha, ha, ha! Oh, boy! Oh, boy!" whenever it's set off, which could spoil the mood, but an Elmo vibrator is better than no vibrator at all.
Please note: Tickle Me Elmo dolls are for external use only. As they say at Good Vibrations, Elmo is not an insertion toy.
You dropped the ball, Dan, in your answer to "Possibly Paranoid" [June 30], whose girlfriend didn't appear to be using birth control and didn't want him to use condoms. Protection is a MUST for any new couple for at least six months, regardless of their desire for offspring. As a family physician, I advise all of my sexually active patients to get tested with their new partner, use protection for six months, then repeat the test. If they can be sure that both are not having unprotected sex elsewhere, and the tests are negative, then they can celebrate with a condom-burning party. It's a dangerous world, and it pays to be careful.
Yes, DD, it pays to be careful, and it never hurts to remind people that it's a dangerous world. I could remind people of this in every column -- week in, week out -- but you know what, DD? Constant reminders would bore smart people who do use protection (when called for) and not change the behavior of dumb people who don't.
Also, I believe adults have a right to assess risk and make their own decisions about what level of risk they're comfortable with. So while I'm happy to remind folks every once in a while that, hey, in certain circumstances they oughta use protection -- and they shouldn't drive drunk, swim right after they eat, or run with scissors -- I don't view nagging as my primary responsibility. That's your job, doc.
In response to Ms. Orally Fixated [June 9], the woman having trouble finding men who would go down on her: There are plenty of men out here who are enthusiastic about cunnilingus. I'm a prime example. In fact, I'd rather give cunnilingus than receive fellatio. It might be because I haven't found a woman who is A) enthusiastic about fellatio, B) willing to go the distance, C) good at it, or D) all of the above. Personally, I love cunnilingus, and I think a lot of men feel the same way.