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Wednesday, September 12, 2007

SVD (Sudden Vibrator Death)

Dear Mistress Maeve,

I am so sick of buying cute little vibrators (I collect shades of purple) only to have them die on me shortly after purchase. I’m not talking about the batteries draining or the motor burning out; I mean when I’m turning the speed dial and the whole thing just suddenly stops, or it mysteriously won’t start, even with fresh batteries. Occasionally some twisting or disassembling/reassembling will bring them back to life. I suspect what is going on is that some internal contacts are not being made or wires have lost touch. I can’t imagine how to fix this without slicing through their silicone flesh with an X-Acto blade to isolate the disconnect. And then what? Wrap it back up in duct tape? I don’t think so. I’ve come to refer to this phenomenon as SVD (Sudden Vibrator Death).

I bought an adorable lavender vibe at a local shop last week, which is acting suspiciously already. I tend to spend in the $15-30 range, afraid to drop more money on an uncertain proposition. Do pricier models boast better longevity?


Dear Molly,

To have your purple pal peter out, so to speak, is nothing short of a tragedy — especially if you’re about to orgasm (been there, done that).

The old adage holds true, even for sex toys: You get what you pay for. Buying cheaper toys locally is a cost-effective option if you want to experiment with a new type of toy, if you have multiple partners and don’t wish to share dildos, or if it’s Labor Day weekend and all your friends are coupled and/or out of town so you decide to squelch your boredom by trying a larger-sized butt plug. (Or is that just me?)

However, when you’re looking for a trusty vibe, do yourself a favor and don’t be a cheapskate. While I always advocate shopping locally when possible, well-known online companies such as and tend to have better return policies, making SVD less of a deterrent to purchasing pricier toys. Most will take a defective product back within 30 days and issue an exchange or credit. Plus, you get the benefit of user-generated critiques and ratings.

Molly, just remember this: A $15 vibe gets you a $15 ride. So go ahead and invest in that high-end toy you’ve been eyeing that has all the bells and whistles — I’m pretty sure it comes in purple.

Many happy returns (or not),

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