Your town has become so oversaturated with big box stores and strip mall chain retailers, there isn't a square foot of space that hasn't been paved over and built upon for another mini mall or its adjacent parking lot. When such rapid development takes place, the area's inhabitants are sent wandering out into the open to find a new place to settle. Which is why all the prostitutes who used to congregate underneath the old Leland overpass can now be found on the outdoor furniture level of the Miles Pavilion Pottery Barn. Today you'll go there because you've decided it is time to become a man.
You'll meet Wanda. She'll be sprawled on a Chesapeake Double Chaise, flipping through a catalog while absently rubbing an ointment on the back of her right thigh.
'Teach me the ways of love,' you'll say to Wanda.
'Go talk to my business manager,' Wanda will say without looking up at you. 'She'll give us the warehouse key.'
Wanda will have pointed to a saleswoman in her thirties who will be helping a customer choose an umbrella for his picnic table. You'll wait patiently, pretending to browse the candlestick holders. You'll stare back at Wanda, wondering whether she is the one to lead you into manhood. You won't be too sure.
When an umbrella has been settled upon, the saleswoman will come to you and ask in a very friendly tone if you need any help.
'Wanda sent me to you,' tell her. 'She said that you would give us the key to the warehouse.'
The saleswoman will turn gruff. 'Eighty for a straight lay. And you gotta buy a set of wicker coasters.'
You won't be sure what the saleswoman means. Tell her, 'I want to learn. My father is gone. Will Wanda teach me to love a woman?'
The saleswoman will be impatient. 'She'll teach you everything she knows kid. But the way it is right now, you don't got much choice who your teacher is. I'm giving these hookers a place to work because they're the last of them, and if I were to send them on their way the whole species will have been displaced. So many of them have already entered social work programs to go straight. Wanda is one of the last of them.'
The two of you will look at Wanda, who will have broken out into a sneezing fit on the chaise. 'She's endangered kid. If you pay her to have sex with you today, it's like your money will go to the spotted owl or something. Wal-Mart can drive them out with their sprawling development projects and their private security detail. But you can fight back, and all you have to do is have your first sex with that prostitute.
'Sold,' you'll say. You'll pay the eighty dollars and she'll give you the key to the warehouse, where you and Wanda will have sex on some wet cardboard boxes. Back upstairs, the saleswoman will shove a pack of coasters in your hand.
'How was she kid?' she'll ask.
'She seemed weak,' you'll say.
The saleswoman will nod. 'She doesn't have much time. Her instinct is telling her to leave town to find another overpass to stand underneath, but she's already too weak to make the journey. So she's stuck here in my Pottery Barn, trying to adapt.'
'Did I help her?' you'll ask.
'More than you know,' the saleswoman will say. 'Now go buy those coasters.'
You'll buy the coasters and run home and cry because sex is scary and hookers with no place to stand around are sad.
Happy Those Whores Down At The Pottery Barn Day!