The Italian Almanac


Italian News - February 26

Adult toys jostled for space with cotton pads and cough syrup on pharmacy shelves in Rome this week, but a rash of publicity has prompted shopowners to spare the blushes of customers and withdraw them from view, though not from sale.

"It's Time to Change your Toys" taunted the English-language slogan on the objects' daring display stand as the "toys" went on sale in pharmacies across the Italian capital. But press photographers trying to snap a picture drew a blank after pharmacists opted for a more prudent approach, deciding to remove the "toys" from the view of unsuspecting adults searching for more prosaic forms of relief... like Vick's vapor rub.

The offending objects are a shaped vibrator for females and a stimulating "ring" designed for male pleasure. The display has been removed to a more private area so as to avoid any embarrassment it might cause to clients. Adult toys are "registered as aids or health instruments" in the health ministry's catalogue of recognized pharmaceutical products, and thus they are suitable for sale in a pharmacy.