Sex Toys in a Vending Machine?

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Sex, Self

You'd be surprised what you can get in a vending machine these days....

Let’s just say right now, vending machines are a wonderful invention. I recall a recent episode of MAD MEN (the AMC hit TV series that takes place in the 1960s) where, office manager, Joan complains that the new vending machines will make the secretaries fat because they can get a snack any time they want. Hey, lighten up Joan, that’s the point! 

It’s true, they’re a convenience we are often happy to see and not just because they can satiate our cravings for sugar and peanuts. Vending machines that dispense condoms, aspirin, mouthwash, lipstick and other sundries can make a night out on the town a bit more pleasant if we find ourselves lacking something we need for a spur of the moment sleepover. I mean we can't buy love but, we can buy sex toys

And if you live in a more sophisticated city than the one you probably live in, you’d be surprised by what you can obtain with a handful of change. Take the Europeans who carry a little basket to go food shopping because they just grab what they’re having for dinner on the way home from work, along with a nice bottle of wine.

So civilized! I’d love to be able to just tuck a baguette and a pork chop and a bottle of cabernet in my woven bag as I walk down the cobbled streets in my high heels, tossing my shiny hair which smells of Chanel No. 5. Then again, you can also buy a fresh baguette from a vending machine. Vive la France!

But what if you’re not going straight home for dinner and have a long boring train commute? Maybe you need some refreshment of the adult variety that doesn’t come in a bottle. This town in Italy has decided it’s not happy about the sex toys being sold in train station vending machines.

Come again? Yes, that seems to be the idea, as you can purchase a wide range of freaky playthings in one convenient coin-operated box. To be fair, the company who owns the vending machines says that Casarsa is the first town where there have been any complaints about the public display of sex toys available to anyone who can pop some coins or a bill in a slot.

Here’s the thing about vending machines; they confer a certain sense of anonymity. You’re not in a store with room for lots of other people, like your girlfriend, your mother, your high school English teacher or your rabbi. You may look around surreptitiously, but as long as you have your money handy, you can get your goods and disappear into the crowd.

It feels just a little bit naughty, doesn’t it? Well, given what you can buy in vending machines these days, feeling guilty about a candy bar is the least of your worries. Imagine getting caught with a big black dildo? (or you know, blue or purple, whatever color you like)

The author of this blog post makes a good point when he wonders what those offended by vending machines dispensing vibrators would make of the Japanese vending machines that sell used schoolgirls’ panties. No, really.  It’s true, even Snopes.com says so!

You can actually buy a whole bunch of wonderful and unusual items in Japanese vending machines. Like toilet paper, eggs, beer, porn, sex toys, live lobsters, neckties and ramen noodles. Really, these are exactly the sorts of things one should be able to buy in a vending machine. I mean, buying a live lobster at a grocery store is just kind of embarrassing if you think about it. I don’t want a bunch of people behind me at the checkout line watching me buy a lobster, ya know?

Italy is not the only city to sell pocket rockets and ball gags to people with bulging pockets (hey! I meant bulging with COINS!); Holland has been selling sex toys from vending machines for years; and they’re called Vibrato-maats! The machines cater to both men and women, and sell an assortment of lubricants and lingerie too.

But what about the United States, you’re wondering. Do I have to go all the way to Vegas to find a dildo in a vending machine? Well, maybe. Though most of our great states at least have a shop or two (or a hundred if you’re in New York City or San Francisco) to purchase such items freely.

But you might have trouble buying sex toys in Alabama, where they’re illegal for purchase even for medical use, unless you use the drive-thru. And until the law was recently overturned, sex toys were also banned for sale in Texas. Hard to believe you can buy guns and ammo at Walmart, but a sex toy has to be bought on the downlow…

Ashley Rosemont is a feature columnist for Sssh.com, the web’s premier porn for women site. She is a Renaissance woman of many talents, but tries to remain humble in the face of all the curveballs life throws her way. She has been a professional writer for over two decades, and specializes in writing on media, culture, health and sexuality.

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