Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Tales from the Bookstore: The Pornography Lady

As you can imagine from my working in retail as long as I have, and in the service industry before that; I have some pretty crazy stories.  I figure once in a while I'll put one up here.

I will start off by pointing out, that I am Christian, but I don't jam it down people's throats.  My religion is my personal business.  Period.

This one took place back in 2007, before I transitioned- hell before I even re-awakened. Every Sunday after church in older woman would come in.  She had stringy gray hair, was maybe five feet tall, and always wore a long corduroy skirt: either brown or gray.

Gratuitous Sophie Picture

She immediately and determinately walked over to the magazine section specifically to the Men's Interest.  Again, she was not the tallest person, so she needed a step stool to reach what she was looking for: the part of the section that Playboy and Penthouse and such.

She would then take a copy, raise it over her head, and start shouting "PORNOGRAPHY!!!!  This is PORNOGRAPHY!!!"  Back then, the same manager would do the day shift on Sundays.  I'll call him "Bob."  Bob was a younger guy, very liberal, and he wasn't going to put up with disturbances in the store.  He also wasn't going to pander to someone who was more than a little bit crazy.

Every week, this woman came in, grabbed a copy of a magazine, and start shouting "PORNOGRAPHY!"  Every week, Bob would be there, and she would insist that he remove the pornography from the store, that this was "Siiiiinfullll" and she couldn't BELIEVE that we stocked such things and then that we are all going straight to "HELLLLLLL" and what about the Children?

And every week, Bob reminded her of the First Amendment, and pointed out to her that is our choice to stock what sells, and this corporation chooses to stock these magazines.

Every Sunday she made the usual threats- that unless YOU pull these magazines and other Siiiinfullll material from our shelves; that she would do something.  There would be a boycott; a strike; and then, one weekend, she said that if this stuff wasn't removed, she would call the "Po-leeece!."

The following weekend, she came in again now at this time there was a movie out called Grindhouse by Quentin Tarantino.  The two main women from the movie were on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine.  The store was featuring the magazine on a display, mostly because it was Rolling Stone and it sells.   So on this Given Sunday, she came in and didn't even make it to the PORNOGRAPHY section- she made it to the RS display, saw the two women on the cover, grabbed the magazine with both hands, raised it overhead and started shouting "PORRRRRRRNOGRAPHY!  This is PORRRRRRRNOGRAPHY!!"


Bob came over as usual.  She started shouting at Bob; saying that she was going to call the police because we obviously had not followed What SHE and GAWD wanted.  Bob laughed at her and said "Go right ahead! Call the police!"  She's kept shouting "PORRRRRRRNOGRAPHY!" and eventually got into an argument with both Bob and another customer.  This argument escalated until Bob had enough.  I don't know if he banned her from the store or not (the Head Store manager never banned anyone) but, in any case, some heated words were exchanged.  She never came back- not in all these years.  The bookstore still carries magazines of that sort, and we still sell them as much as we used to but the PORRRRRRRNOGRAPHY lady has not come back.  Perhaps she has gone to find a different target to "save."

Oh, and that issue of Rolling Stone she shouted about?  Within two hours, we had sold out of it completely.

I'd like to think it was because of her wonderful advertising.


  1. Good thing she never thumbed through a National Geographic. One sub-Saharan breast and you'd have had a medical emergency on your hands.

  2. Sophie -

    I don't want the salvation that people like that lady preach. A heaven like what they believe in would have no pleasure - just boredom. The reason Sex sells is that sex is pleasurable. There is a "good" reason why religions try to regulate sex - it's the one way they can be sure to grab the hearts and minds of the followers. Take away that control, and no one would bother with these people who deny pleasure to others. We'd be way too busy having sex to have any interest in making war.

    I have a strong belief that in a true heaven, we'd be having as much sex as we wanted - with multiple orgasms for all. And I'll bet that this frightens religious folk, as this would imply that we could approach having heaven on earth. If so, who needs religion?