I’m a thrifty bachelor. I got deals flooding my inbox all day. They’re coming from far and wide: Amazon, Groupon, Living Social, Thrillist, Urban Daddy, Zozi. I love me a good deal—that’s why in June of 2012, when an offer from kgbdeals for two bullet vibrators for $19 came through my inbox, I had to jump on it. I had never owned a vibrator or dildo before—let alone two for less than a Jackson.
I was told to allow up to four weeks for shipping (which was free—and further sweetened the deal). So while I waited for them to arrive, I thought about how much my life would change with the addition of one pink and one silver vibrator. I figured it was like adopting fraternal twins.
I used to date a girl who raved about her $350 vibrator. She sent me a picture of it once: her hand looked small wrapped around this black hunk-of-something that had made her fingers obsolete. The device looked like it had been torn off the monster from Alien. Although it paid no rent, it was her black roommate. It even frightened her cat.
The twins I was purchasing were marked down 58% from $45 to $19. They were in a completely different battery-operated caste. What the fuck was I doing ordering them?
I was 30 years old, single, hetero (still am, for the most part), and had developed a testicular sensitivity that makes using a vibrator on my balls annoying at best. So the bullets really weren’t for me—they were for the girls I was seeing and the ones I would be seeing down that ((vibrating)) road…
That’s what was going on in my head. I was seriously imagining bringing a girl back to my place, and at some point before or during our throes of passion—maybe after a called timeout—I’d offer up one of my bullets for her pleasure.
“Care for some good vibes?”
“I thought you’d never ask,” she’d say. “Now I know you’re a gentleman.”
In reality when a woman pulls out her vibrator, it’s a sexy action. Not only is it a sign of what’s to come (unless you really fuck things up, dude), but it’s also an intimate invitation. Close your eyes and listen to the whirring of palmed machinery. This is what she uses when she’s alone—when she’s with other lovers too, for sure—but what’s most important is that she uses this. There’s no bullshitting its purpose. She’s showing you what gets her off. It’s her toy and it’s wonderful.
But when the situation is reversed, and a guy pulls out his vibrator(s)—while at the same time maintaining that it’s not for his pleasure—it’s weird, creepy, and begs so many questions:
-Is it in its original packaging?
-If the answer to the above question is “No,” then the follow-up is, Has it been used?
-If “Yes,” then on who?—Does that even matter, baby? It’s not like you’d know her…—All right, all right. But have you at least cleaned it?
In spite of the definite awkwardness to come, I awaited the arrival of the twins with much hope. But four weeks passed and nothing came. I waited a few more days before contacting customer service. I was getting ready to fly out to Los Angeles for one of the many extended stays of 2012 and wanted to go through airport security packing bullets.
Margie from the kgbdeals Support Team assured me that “this item [sic] has already shipped and you should be receiving in [sic] any day. If you do not receive it by mid next week please let us know and we will contact the merchant on your behalf.” (“Merchant” = fantastic word choice.)
Alas, I flew to L.A. without vibrators for the umpteenth time in my life. While I was away from my Brooklyn apartment, a friend of mine was picking up my mail and forwarding it to my address in Echo Park. When I told him about the twins I’d been expecting, he couldn’t believe it—“Seriously, dude, what chick’s gonna let you touch her with it? And why do you need two of them?”—but went ahead and sent over what he figured was the package I’d been waiting for.
They arrived in a brown envelope from the Comstock era. I felt dirty examining the postage (Royal Mail – Great Britain). The envelope opened like it had done this before. Its inside was lined with plastic bubbles, and huddled in the lower corner of this inhospitable incubator were the twins. Each one asleep in its own dime bag.
The twins were beyond “Small, discreet and portable”—they were delicate. It was as if their bigger vibrothers and sisters had shoved them aside during feeding time. My palms looked gigantic holding the runts—one pink, one silver—no bigger than AA batteries.
Each had a button where its mouth (and/or anus) would be. I pressed the silver one’s and felt the buzz. I closed my eyes and thought of a college sophomore lying in her bed—her roommate long gone to the library—and the steady whirring over her clit, as she convulsed beneath a Dave Matthews poster. Another push of the button put the bullet to sleep.
I was seeing a girl in L.A. who owned a Hitachi Magic Wand. If vibrators were insects, this bug would be the queen. It was even more intimidating than the Alien vibrator I talked about above, because the Hitachi has to be plugged in—an extension cord was necessary, depending on the setup of your room and its available electrical outlets—and it can strip barnacles from ship hulls.
I showed my friend the twins, and she told me how important it is to use a protective barrier, like a condom, on them—that is, if I was planning on playing with more than one gal. Although the bullets are made from a “water-resistant material” (as advertised) and you can (and should!) clean them, female juices can still seep into the microscopic fissures and… I don’t know—make bad things?
We decided not to use a barrier, but in order to sidestep a possible Prometheus-like mixing of DNA, I decided that the silver bullet was hers to “keep,” although it would remain in my possession. I didn’t want to separate it from its sibling.
When I got back to New York, I was determined to keep the pink bullet communal. A girl I had gone out with a few times—who had her own pink contraption that looked like a Double Dare physical challenge—came over to my apartment, and I told her about the twins. Shortly after that, I broke them out.
She didn’t ask me if they had been used before—which was weird—but I offered her a brief history of the vibrators anyway.
“We can’t use this one,” I said, referring to the silver bullet, “because it’s been used—it’s clean, you know—but you know…”
“OK,” she said.
“But this one we can use,” I said, holding up the pink one. “But we should probably put it in a condom or something, you know…”
She didn’t seemed concerned one way or the other.
Now if you’ve ever unfurled a condom in midair, and then tried to slip a small vibrator into it, then you know just how sexy it is not.
Once we got over that slimy hump, I pressed the button, but the bullet wouldn’t buzz. There was something wrong. I had all this condom lube on my fingers and I was trying to click the thing to life, but it wasn’t responding.
I passed it over to her. The problem was that the bullet was broken—the button needed to be held down in order to vibrate, which was difficult because of how small the unit was and the fact that it was engulfed in latex.
If there was only a way to keep the pressure on the button…
I left the room to look for tape. When I came back with a roll of blue painter’s tape (it’s all I had), my date had removed the vibrator from the condom and was now trying to get it to work directly on her clit. No barrier to speak of.
“What are you doing?” I wanted to say. “You can’t claim a man’s vibrator as your own! Without his permission?”
But I just stood there, tape in my hand, as she continued to manipulate the flawed device. It was helpless in her hands.
“The pink one was supposed to last beyond tonight,” I wanted to say. “What we have will not last beyond tonight.”
I was so broken up. Maybe I can clean it, I thought. Maybe I can salvage it somehow. But then…
Then this smell filled the room. The intermittent whirring of the vibrator must have summoned it (a side effect not listed on kgbdeals). I can only describe the stench as what I imagine a Hasidic man’s balls must smell like after a marathon.
Heartbroken, I cooled the action, and eventually she left us (me and my vibrators) to take the subway back to her apartment and her own defiled pink device.
It’s amazing what thoughts will come to a man when he’s left alone with his vibrators.
Sympathetic to the twins, I felt dirty and in need of a baptism, but I knew there was nothing that would make us clean again. So what did I do?
Well, I decided to start putting together my first chess set. One side pink. The other side silver.
$19 for two vibrating pawns—not a bad deal.