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The X Files
Xavier Hermosillo is the President of, a national Crisis Communications, Marketing, and Management firm he founded 23 years ago. He is a former political chief of staff, an award-winning reporter and photographer, and a former radio talk show host and TV commentator in Los Angeles. He has co-founded two publicly-traded companies where he served as a member of the Board of Directors and as the Senior Vice President of Investor Relations and Corporate Communications. He has also served as a Hearing Examiner for the Los Angeles Police Commission on police officer discipline cases, and holds degrees in Administration of Justice and Business and Communications. He can be reached at

WARNING: The following column is rated NC-17 (No Children under 17 Admitted) or perhaps it could be rated MA (Suitable for Mature Audiences or Adults Only) - it may contain extreme examples of graphic sexual attire, strong profanity, overt sexual dialog and/or explicit sexual acts.

I came to Las Vegas for a couple of trade shows and voila! an orgy broke out while I was trying to find my way into the Consumer Electronics Show and the Internext Dating Show.

I'm writing this column in my hotel room because I promised my wife I would not violate my marriage vows in Sin City on this trip, and if I go out to party, I'll get in trouble and fail to get my column done. I only get to Las Vegas a couple of times per year, always on business, because I am not much of a gambler. But my entry into the Sands Expo Center on the north end of the Venetian Hotel complex a few days ago was more than I had ever expected.

We all know Vegas is the Sodom and Gomorrah of the United States and of course, what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. While some of you APTRA diehards were helping out Hal Eisner at the Palace Station Hotel and Casino, I was trying to come to terms with how open I really am about life, society's sexuality, my morals, Las Vegas' morals, business and morals, politics and morals, and the business of sex, from sex toys to skin flicks to pornography, both the heterosexual and homosexual variety.

It's one thing to walk into a hotel and expo center and expect to see computer geeks and gadget freaks plying their trade in iPods, plasma TVs and other electronic gadgets. It's another entirely different experience to see some of the most beautiful women God put on this earth walking around the public hallways in nothing but see-through bras and panties.

I'm no prude and I'm not complaining. It's just that as much heat as Hollywood and California take for being so liberal and smutty, we just don't see women in business walking around Southern California almost totally naked. And while I am probably as guilty as the next normal red-blooded American male of leering at the female form, it was still both a shock and a challenge for me to handle.

The sexuality and comfort that exude from these ladies were both marvelous and scary. Were they such comfortable and strong women or were they sex freaks or abused women with little or no self-esteem? Now don't get me wrong; I was not playing psychologist or judgmental preacher as porno star after naked model strutted her stuff in front of both men and women. I just didn't know how to react; I wasn't sure whether I should look them straight in the eye like I do with most people, or ogle at their beauty and attire as I suspected they expected.

I asked for directions to the booth where I could pick up my credentials for the Internext Dating Show and I found I was now on the south side of the main hall where the Adult Entertainment Expo was being held. This was Adult Porno and Sex Toy Central. With a set of credentials hanging around my neck, passage into the Married Man's Purgatory was much too easy.

I've been the inquisitive journalist type since I started writing sports professionally at the age of 14, and I have always prided myself in knowing a lot about a lot of things with NO limitations to my curiosity. My ability to rattle off the names of porno stars is rather dated, running the gamut from Ron Jeremy and Nina Hartley, to Traci Lord and the Lynn sisters (Ginger and Amber). I do know about Jenna Jameson and other current practitioners of modern cinematic sex, but I never imagined that I was so totally out of touch with the most modern sex toys and their practical use.

I am trying to be as open and clear in my descriptions here, without being too clinical on one extreme, and perverted on the other end (no pun intended). But when I saw a vendor doing a brisk business selling a product that looked like the plastic tubs of margarine I buy at the supermarket, I was astonished to find out it was called "Boy Butter" and the name alone tells you what it is and why it is so popular with gays.

Even though I am a life-long practicing Republican, I have always taken the position that I am not the morality policeman anywhere outside of my own sphere of influence with my family and those who work for me. I have always said that gays are free to live their lifestyle as long as they don't try to push it onto me, my family, or anybody else's children. That infuriates my most right-wing pals, especially those for whom their religion and gay folks' lifestyles clash, but that's just how I feel.

Yet, despite my professed openness to the "live and let live" view of life, turning the corner and seeing two guys pleasure themselves on a 72-inch plasma screen was way beyond any interest I might have had in gaining a better understanding of the gay lifestyle. All of a sudden, I was muttering to myself, "TMI, TMI - too much information". My eyes and my brain were woefully out of synch and arguing over what the hell I was seeing and why.

As I headed out of that section, a vixen - that's what she had stenciled on her wet t-shirt that amply displayed her ample attributes - approached me and she either saw my shock and discomfort, or found me an easy mark. She asked how I was enjoying the show and as I tried to regain control over my communications functions that were still scrambled from the gay video, I muttered something like, "Wow, this is great. And what do you do?" I asked to try and buy some time to readjust.

She looked down at my credentials, quickly analyzed what they said, and then she told me she did whatever would make me happy. "My job is to put a smile on your face," she said with the sweetness of a high school cheerleader in a porno flick but with the conviction of a self-employed entrepreneur engaged in the world's oldest profession. Game point to the hot young lady wearing almost nothing.

I was not a match for her approach arsenal, despite my moral compass spinning so fast in my head, I was feeling like a tormented soul with a bad case of Tourette's Syndrome. Was she serious? Was I such an easy mark to pay her big bucks or just an easy schmuck to toy with in the middle of this garden of iniquity? I was having a hard time accepting that I was out-matched or out-witted, as the case might be, and I felt even more uncomfortable as another vixen joined the fray, creating more distraction for me.

Just then, a couple of gay guys strolled by and a third fellow walking by began to express his interest and admiration for the "package" on one of the gay fellows. He reached down to personally inspect the "package" and I knew I was totally out of my element. As I tried to assess my level of discomfort with engaging in frank sexual talk with a strange seductress while watching a gay encounter, it hit me.

In less than 10 to 15 minutes in the adult expo, I realized that if I spotted someone there that I actually knew, I wouldn't know hot to respond. I began to wonder if I would be more concerned about what they would think of me, or if I would be judgmental of what they were doing at a porno expo. I began to ask myself why I was even entertaining such thoughts and concerns because just being at such a show is not a crime. I know some religious people would call it some sort of moral crime, but that wasn't behind my level of discomfort. It felt as wrong as it felt right but way too weird over all.

I knew this adult expo was not the main reason for my Vegas trip and my unexpected, but unavoidable side trip had to end. I did not like the fact that I was having a difficult time feeling in full control of my faculties inside that exhibit hall. There's no way in hell I would have cheated on my wife with one of those beautiful bimbos, but there was a part of me that was trying to consider the possibilities. Ultimately, it was the reality of sexually transmitted diseases that cut into the folly of any thinking there could be a horny hook-up in Hot Town USA.

I left the exhibit hall seeking some form of refuge in the busy halls of the high class Venetian Hotel. It got a little better, but not much. The young ladies strolling toward the shops that run along the man-made canals were still strutting their stuff, and the reaction to them from visitors was mixed. Most people looked and then looked away, apparently not wanting to appear so obvious in their reaction.

Others dropped their jaws and their eyes got as big as dollar coins as they stopped in their tracks and tried to grasp with how different Las Vegas is from the farms in Ohio or Kansas from whence these people came. An occasional "Oh my God" from their mouths said it all.

Then I saw the "final straw" that sort of wrapped up the cause and effect ratio that had been puzzling me, the issue of whether these young women (and there were a couple of women over 40 who really showed their age) were parading their bodies because of emotional or psychological deficiencies, or it was just about the money.

I saw a very chubby short guy with a scraggly beard and a case of the really bad hair day, wearing a dirty-looking running suit, with his scuffed tennis shoes overly worn at the heels, walking arm in arm with two young beauties who were wearing almost nothing and showing almost everything, as they entered a jewelry store at the Venetian. He told them, "Pick out something you like baby, something you can brag about to your peeps."

The reporter in me couldn't resist the urge to find out who this guy was and how he could so easily gain and maintain the attention of these two babes in a place like the Venetian with his scruffy look. I walked up to him and said, "Hey man, I'm curious by nature and the old reporter in me just has to ask, 'How does a guy like you land these hot escorts?'" He chuckled and said to me, "Just show them the money and they're all yours, as long as you have the money."

There was the answer to the burning question of the moment. For this guy, it boiled down to the stereotypical image of women as gold diggers. Like it or not, for him, it was real. And I saw it as a metaphor for Las Vegas and for the adult industry expo. It's all about the money - always. And it's all about the pleasure it will buy you, whether it's in the casino or in the cozy comforts of a suite.

I discussed my experience and my mental dilemmas with some of my cohorts at the trade shows and they were more freaked out than I was. I called my best friend in the entire world, my wife, and without getting into a lot of detail, I jokingly told her, "Either you get to Vegas in the next two hours and help peel me off the ceiling, or I'm never coming home again." She politely laughed in a way that told me she fully understood my reaction to what I had been through.

She told me that I would survive my adventure and that if she flew to Vegas, I would miss my trade shows due to her becoming my distraction, and that this temporary absence would certainly make my heart grow fonder. She was surprised I was such an easy fall guy, for the moment, to scantily dressed models and porno stars. She told me my dog instincts were out of control. She was right and I realized that to put myself back in control of my persona and my direction, I had to rely on a quick and firm reply to her points.

My only response was, "You know, I can't explain what happened and why, but after all I have seen, and all I have learned about Boy Butter and sex toys, I have to leave it all behind and just accept that what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas." Especially, when it completely boggles the mind and defies normal human logic and the average American experience.

For the first time in my life, I now realize that Las Vegas is more than about gambling, entertainment, and trade shows. I now believe this city is America's relief valve for all the things in our lives that we can't or don't talk about or easily deal with anywhere else in the country. It is a freedom zone where anything goes even the most bizarre behaviors are just a blip on the radar and not even the media finds it unusual to see naked or near-naked men and women express their sexual proclivities openly, even in high end resorts like the Venetian that also cater to the average American working stiff (and again, no pun intended).