Toronto’s gay sex shop Priape is at the centre of the latest scandal that’s outed a conservative, family-values Republican politician in the United States.
Greg Davis, the mayor of Southaven, Mississippi (a suburb of Memphis, Tennessee), was embroiled in a spending scandal after it came to light that he billed an expensive family vacation and counselling session for his former wife to the city. Davis recently divorced his wife, with whom he has three daughters.
City officials uncovered thousands of dollars in charges for liquor and expensive dinners and demanded Davis repay $170,782.28 (US) in expenses that he had racked up on both his city credit card and his personal credit card in improper purchases dating back to 2009. He later submitted 500 pages of receipts in an attempt to justify the expenses and lower the amount he must repay.
Reporters from the Memphis-based Commercial Appeal combed through the receipts and found one for a $67 purchase at the Priape store on Church St in Toronto, a purchase Davis made while visiting the city on business.
When asked what he had purchased at a gay sex shop, Davis told the Commercial Appeal that he couldn’t recall but did admit that he is a gay man.
“While I have performed my job as mayor, in my opinion, as a very conservative, progressive individual — and still continue to be a very conservative individual — I think that it is important that I discuss the struggles I have had over the last few years when I came to the realization that I am gay.”
The admission was surprising because Davis has presented himself as a Conservative, family-values politician, including during two unsuccessful runs for Congress under the Republican banner in 2008.
Priape manager Laurence Heath says he doesn’t remember Davis being in the store and wouldn’t disclose what any customer purchases. But he did say it was surprising that the receipt prompted Davis’s outing. Although Priape has a large gay clientele and is known for selling gay porn, dildos, sex toys and fetish wear, many straight people also patronize the store. If Davis had a clothing allowance, his purchases may have even been legitimate business purchases.
“It could’ve been three $20 sunglasses or a $60 belt,” Heath says.
Davis’s pre-tax purchase would have totalled about $59. Priape carries many other items that Davis could have purchased with that money.
If he was visiting the store to purchase gay porn, he would have found good deals on the used DVDs rack. Some possible titles include I’m a Married Man 5, the eighth and ninth installments of the Men Hard at Work series ($29.95 each), and Office Affairs ($49.95).
The entire purchase could have been one 16-ounce bottle of Gun Oil lubricant or a dildo moulded from gay pornstar François Sagat’s penis ($59.95 each), but it’s hard to imagine him using one without the other.
But Heath says that if Davis was just becoming aware of himself as a gay man, he would have recommended that Davis start with smaller purchases.
“I don’t recommend the 16-ounce bottles or the expensive dildos to a first-timer, because you want to know what you like before spending a lot of money,” he says. “Be careful: objects are larger than they appear.”
However, since Davis was spending the city’s money and not his own, who’s to say he wouldn’t have thrown caution to the wind and purchased Priape’s Hulk dildo, which is 10.25 inches long and measures 10 inches in circumference ($44.95)?
Priape’s cheapest and smallest dildo is the So Real Suction Base 6-Inch Dong ($8.95), but a good value for a beginner would be the Rascal Initiation Kit, a three-piece anal plug kit in graduated sizes ($50.95).
Heath suggests that a first-timer might also be interested in one of Priape’s more affordable douches. He might have recommended the Mini Douche StreemMaster ($25).
It’s unlikely Davis purchased any extreme fetish gear with only a $60 purchase, but he may have bought an inexpensive pair of nipple clamps (Endurance, $10.95), a leather Priape jockstrap with zippered crotch ($39.95), a riding crop ($18) or a cockring (rubber, $1.95, leather $7.95-12.95).
Priape does also sell condoms, with prices ranging from $5.95 for a three-pack of Kimono MicroThins to $18.95 for a 12-pack of the same.
Despite an ongoing criminal investigation into this spending scandal, Davis says that he is not planning to resign from his position as mayor and that he plans to run for reelection as an out gay man in 2013.