Once you get the base attachment, you can attach a startling array of ever-so-soft -- but firm, if you know what we mean -- rubber implements with a quick twist of the wrist. Then it's just a couple snaps onto the harness and you're good to go.
And boy, is there ever an array of attachments at V.I.P.
Ones that look like they came off German shepherds. Ones that resemble dinosaur dongs. Even several that look human. The mind boggles.
Featuring lingerie both tasteful and nasty, V.I.P. is the kind of place that attracts couples. It's a clean place run by folks who look professional, who know what they're talking about and who are patient when it comes to explaining how the various gadgets work. The store also stocks videos, DVDs and an assortment of leather-and-chain gear, which isn't really our cup of tea. We like latex and buzzing stuff that requires batteries. V.I.P. has that in spades. And vacu-lock.
At the Zootique, stuffed animals, games, puzzles and educational books await. Dongola the Hippo and Ruwaba the Rhino need someone to cuddle with. Board games such as Funky Monkey and Rainforest Roundup both amuse and educate. The little ones will want to handle everything in the store and will no doubt beg for this or that toy. When confronted with those pleading eyes, just remember: Golden Garden Spider replicas are not so much a toy as a learning experience (but don't tell Junior that).
The Missouri Historical Society's Louisiana Purchase Shop has the monopoly on gifts with a local connection, from the popular Monopoly, St. Louis style, to oh-so-cute historical-figure dolls -- Meriwether Lewis and Kate Chopin, for example -- in period attire. Culinary enthusiasts may want to serve their guests using reproductions of Madame Chouteau's china, from the egg cup priced at $22 to the $162 fish platter. Also, something new and truly unique: reproductions of prehistoric pottery, copied from finds at Cahokia Mounds.
And you can make a day of it and walk through the park from one to the next to the next.
No more opening your car door, crawling through the automatic doors and exposing yourself to bright florescence; simply drive up, ring a bell, pay the man and get your booze -- and an angel gets its wings. Life is good when you can pick up beer, Red Bull, vodka, smokes and ice barefoot and return to the crib, sit down and get lazy. Plus, there's never a line, a luxury always worth paying for.