OK, it's out there.

It's been mulling about in my head for about five years now, and finally, I can say it aloud. I dream of running an adult bookstore.

No, it's not that I'm a pervert. It's just that I think they provide a service to the public and that it's an opportunity to make money. Especially in a college town.

Now, I know what you're thinking. What a strange goal to enter a sleazy business. But when you think about it, it's an upfront, legitimate business that makes no bones about what it sells or promotes.

And, yes, I have thought about the desirability of such a shop in a college town, where you have thousands of young sexed coeds and studs, jumping from bar to bar, from bed to bed, trying to get laid and often.

It seems to me that this population is in serious need of both birth control and safe sex supplies. And since Wal-Mart, CVS and most corner gas stations all are now willing to sell condoms and lubes, that there is a serious competition for people cruising for one-night-stand supplies. So you would have to branch out and have a variety of product.

I guess I'm envisioning a business that could exist in a small space, not necessarily on the main ***** of town, but close enough that it could be walked. In a respectable part of town so that people could walk after dark and not be afraid of either being jumped nor recognized.

This ABS would stock sex toys, lubes, condoms and X-rated DVDs. The DVDs would double as supplies for a rotating number of closed circuit channels in two to four viewing booths. If you liked the DVD that you were watching in private, you could purchase it to go home with you. Or you could rent the whole thing for $7. Or you could pay by the minute with tokens that were sold, 20 for $5.00 (The coin operated control panel would also accept bills, quarters and tokens.)

Now, I already know that our state forbids having private viewing booths with doors that lock. In fact, some years ago, the measure was passed to prevent lewd acts in those same booths. But human nature being what it is, those acts will always occur, whether they are in private with a locked door, or behind a draped curtain, or in a booth that simply has a baffle to block viewing from the outside. I know of at least two other ABS who have modified their booths so that every one has a privacy screen, much as the old public bathrooms had privacy partitions that would shield or screen the door from view.

And I'm alright with that, provided that I could: A) plan the floor plan to maximize the number of booths and shared access ways, B) place common walls between pairs of booths, and C) allow some left over wire access portholes that are roughly 4 inches round and 30" off the ground.

I've seen a few remodeled businesses that take advantage of cubicle partitions and modular construction, and I'm thinking that might be the way to go. Gaps at the floor to allow mopping. Ventilation through the top to allow heat to escape. And maybe event some with pegboard between booths to allow viewing of others without access. Subdued lighting in back, and an indicator when a booth is in use might be nice as well.

Of course the selection of product would have to be marked up, but not outrageously, so that we could turn a profit and quickly. The major expenses might be lighting, power, heat, taxes and personnel to staff. I figure with an owner/operator taking the lion's share of hours, say from noon to 8pm and maybe a half time employee or two to cover 8pm to 2 a.m. when the bars close plus hours on the weekend, we might get by with three employees, maybe 4.

If structured right, we could also have a photo studio set up in the back for risqué photos or glamor shots, using product as props. Feather boas, t-shirts, polo shirts, hoop skirts and lazy nightgowns. That sort of thing.

And we'd need to have a good supply of a variety of condoms, both boxed and singles available for customers who also want to buy lube, contraceptive foam or hard-on pills.

But I draw the line at head shop items and drug supplies. I want no trade in that area. Also, no inhalants, whippets, balloons, K-9 or bath salts. That stuff kills, and I don't want any part of pushing nor promoting that trade.

The video machines are available to major chains, and if I were to affiliate with one, I could possibly get them at discount, or used machines that are serviceable. With a little electronic work, I could wire the booths from a control rack behind the counter or in a locked closet. An on-premise bathroom for employees only and guest photo subjects would be a natural.

The only problem is that some of this has been tried before in this town, and the business relocated twice. They had everything that I'm describing except for the videos and the viewing booths. They even had a very catchy name for the place and I thought it catered to college coeds. But within a year, it was out of business. I even went so far as to apply for a job there, but was told they went through a temp business supply company to screen all their help. I chanced on the owner once and casually asked what went wrong. Demurring a bit, she simply said, "My f***ing landlord is what went wrong!"

I assume she either meant that he raised her rent too high, too fast...or that he wanted to buy her out...or that his other business interests got in the way of this business interest. But whatever the problem, the property remains closed, with a billboard over top of their door that still proclaims "Passionate Kisses". This, even though there are no lights on and no business being conducted there.

You see, I've thought a good deal about this. And three things are holding me back from pursuing this. 1) The ability to hold your head up in public when it becomes known that you're behind such a shop is at risk. 2) Applying for funding/loans depends upon favorable support by the banking industry. and 3) this town forced almost all the VHS Mom and Pop video rental stores to close down their **** back room rentals through pressure from community groups and churches. It wasn't overt, but I know it was done.

And so, I'm wondering why someone doesn't pursue this in our town. Maybe someday when I retire, and my family is thinned out, I might float such an investment. If only some money would come my way, I might just give it a spin. Even if somebody would buy me out after a year, it might be fun.
studfinder studfinder
56-60, M
1 Response Aug 22, 2014

Just drove by the location...the billboard sign is down, and the space is being used as a woodshop. Bummer...