Sean Flynn explores the labyrinth of Philippine sex clubs—a paradise for adventurers where the girls are plentiful, cheap, and have no other choice.
He’s never been to the Philippines before, he tells them, just heard the stories about the bars and the girls, and now that he’s divorced, what the hell, treat himself. It’s kind of weird, the way you can buy a girl for a couple of bucks, a different one every night, every hour if you want, walk around town with her and not even pretend it’s anything more than a cash transaction.
There are small and curious eddies, like the Brits—”whorists,” the tabloids call them—who’ve discovered “tottie tours” through Tallinn, the capital of Estonia, or the drip of Arabs who fly to Chisinau, in desperately impoverished Moldova, to patronize the brothels.
But the strongest currents flow to the most entrenched bazaars: to the resort cities of Brazil, Cuba, and a few Caribbean islands; to Central America; and, of course, to Southeast Asia—historically, Thailand and Cambodia and, rising fast over the past twenty years, the Philippines.
That’s how it happened, just like that: A little girl walks into a bar and gets a job.“Hey.” Big Daddy again, out there beyond the strobe of the stage lights. His name is Thomas Glenn Jarrell, an Ohio native who did a tour in the army before settling in a dirty little city that is moderately famous simply because it has bars, dozens of them, and girls, thousands of them, and only eighteen bucks a night. Wrap her naked around a pole or put her in a room with a big glass window and a flock of other girls, bored and trying not to look it, waiting to be picked like lobsters from a tank.
Move her down to Manila and pay her more, or move her up the coast to a shack on the National Highway and pay her less.
There are stories, too, of breathtaking naïveté, of young Moldovans giddy because they’ve got contracts to work as cocktail waitresses in Kabul, of peasants in Mindanao who believe a low-rent gangster when he promises to make them cabaret stars in Manila or Tokyo, of foolish girls who actually The great bulk of the business, though, is far more prosaic, a function of simple economics, the ageless enterprise of women willingly selling their most easily marketed assets.