best of nyc 1999

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Tristan Taormino's New York

Rubber, duckie: The Baronness (right)
and her showroom assistant

photo: Sylvia Plachy
New York is the sexiest city in the world. Before hopping on the F train to the city, I dashed over to Rite Aid/Park Slope (249 Seventh Avenue, Brooklyn, 718-768-9575). I knew the extra large absorbent bed pads would be in stock there (they are nearly impossible to find at many other drug stores). Those were for later when my girlfriend would squirt all over the bed after I tied her up with rope from that mammoth kinky-resource-in-disguise Home Depot (550 Hamilton Avenue, Brooklyn, 718-832-8553).

Now, I couldn't have any kind of a fabulous weekend (and I especially couldn't have sex in public) without looking fabulous. I was desperate to find a pair of fuzzy leopard-print stripper-high platforms, and searched for them everywhere on 8th Street and beyond; I settled for Grand Nationals (a/k/a the hoof boots) from the master of shoe fetishism, John Fluevog (104 Prince Street, 431-4484). I also needed a sexy new outfit to wear and went to Purple Passion (242 West 16th Street, 807-0486) where I got some hot PVC shorts with a zipper all the way around, to Patricia Field (10 East 8th Street, 254-1699) for something with maribou, and — for a backup — the sale rack at French Connection Soho (435 West Broadway, 219-1197) for a dress that looks like a slip. And speaking of undergarments, I wanted a new bustier with matching panties and a new bra-thong set (so I could have options). I can always find something good at Victoria's Secret (34 East 57th Street, 758-5592) or at the teenie-weenie-but-full-of-treasures Pink Slip (Grand Central Terminal Concourse, 949-9037). I decided to bite the bullet and get a custom latex bra designed by The Baroness (by appointment only, 529-5964).

I had lost the Vino lip pencil that goes with my Media lipstick, so it was on to M.A.C. (113 Spring Street, 334-4641) for a replacement and some silver eyeshadow; then over to Ricky's (44 East 8th Street, 254-5247) for the out-of-this-world fake eyelash selection. Almost forgot — I wanted a new piece of jewelry for my pierced nipple, so I went to DV8 (211 West 20th Street, 337-9744) and asked Master Piercer Keith Alexander to help pick one out.

Then it was over to Toys in Babeland (94 Rivington Street, 375-1701) to take advantage of my employee discount and buy a leopard-print vibrator (if I couldn't get the shoes, I'd settle for the vibe), Ria unlubricated condoms, Slippery Stuff lube, a leather blindfold, and a butt plug named Kate. While I was on the Lower East Side, I picked up The Drag King Book, a frozen mocha, and a vegan peanut butter bar at Bluestockings Women's Bookstore (172 Allen Street, 777-6028). And I went to Vinnie's Tampon Case Company Store (245 Eldridge Street, 228-CASE), where I got a magnet, a Vinnie's T-shirt in bright red (of course), and hung out with Vinnie himself. He's the coolest guy; he makes art, baseball hats, and tampon cases — silkscreened canvas purses to hold your OBs, girls — for a living. The storefront is also the world headquarters for the company, so Vinnie was packing tampon cases for UPS, but I still got to rap a little on the subject of applicator versus nonapplicator. That Vinnie is one smart cookie.

Speaking of smart cookies, my girlfriend likes to have sex in public restrooms, and I had a few lined up for us to make the rounds: the spacious women's room at my favorite movie theater, Loew's Cineplex 19th Street (890 Broadway, 979-6811), the sleazy-but-clean basement bathroom at Phoenix (447 East 13th Street, 477-9979), the over-the-top scummy urinal at The Cock (188 Avenue A), and the old standby where we know they won't bother us — the Brooklyn dyke hangout, The Rising Cafe (186 Fifth Avenue, Brooklyn, 718-789-6340). Other great places we plan to at least attempt public sex: the elevator at my favorite hotel, The Soho Grand (310 West Broadway, 965-3000); the second floor of Grand Central Terminal; a bench in Tompkins Square Park; the Clit Club (at Mother, 432 West 14th Street, 529-3300); and in the back of a taxi. The weekend culminated in some public sex after all. Luckily, my girlfriend runs Carnalitea (hot line: 718-788-5122), a monthly women's play party that changes locations, but currently makes its home at L'oeil Caché (989-3286), a commercial dungeon that's spectacular, especially the sling on springs and the bondage bed in the back room. A sling on springs — that's my New York.

Other Essays categories:

Austin Bunn's New York

Fanboy's Best of NYC as told to Ward Sutton

Greg Tate's New York

Guy Trebay's New York

Lynn Yaeger's New York

Michael Musto's New York

Richard Goldstein's New York

Robert Christgau's New York

Toni Schlesinger's New York

William Bastone's New York