Friday, August 31, 2007

Ben-Wa Products Wholesale Order Form, 1989

Back in the 1980's I worked for about a year in a huge warehouse for an adult novelties mail-order catalog.

(click on form to engorge on a new page)

Every day I'd help unload truckloads of the various rubber, plastic and vinyl toys and appliances, lotions, cheap sexy lingerie, adult books and videos and other sundries that appeared in the glossy pages of the company's quarterly catalog.

I'd help unpack the cartons, sort, bag, apply barcodes, and place them in their warehouse locations while the order pickers would deplete the stock almost as fast as I could replenish it.

It had been a Fortune 500 company for several years running
(before their ill-advised relocation to California).

(click on either form scans or page numbers to enlarge)

Page 1
Page 2
Page 3
Page 4
Page 5
Page 6

For most of my time working there, it was one of the most enjoyable jobs I've ever had. Lots of funny and colorful stories...

It was hard work, but down on the warehouse floor, among the products and the hive of folks working there, it was difficult to take anything too seriously.

This wholesale list from one of the catalog's suppliers is sadly the only souvenir I have from those days.

Really it's just like any dry and boring order form, but something about the flavor of the product names make it sound at times almost like poetry.

Maybe it'd be the same for any catalog, if you arranged the items correctly...

Ben-Wa is of course still in business, and of course has a website, where many of the items still exist in one form or another.
Some things never go out of style.
Check it out if you (are of age and) have a need to 'place the faces to the names'.

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