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At AEE, Phil Varone: “This is very much a business and a profitable one”

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from – The American Dream used to mean something. Before the age of the recession people would come from all over the world to America in an effort to capture the elusive promise of wealth and success. The United States was considered the land of opportunity.

Things have changed. With the unemployment rate skyrocketing throughout the country many Americans are losing faith in the dream, a few have even declared it dead. They are obviously talking to the wrong people.

According to a CNBC poll conducted last year, a porn movie is produced every 39 minutes in the U.S. and thanks to ever growing technology more people can access it in new ways around the globe. Let’s be honest, not everyone wants to watch a Youtube video of someone jumping a park bench with their skateboard. Everyone, whether they admit it publically or not, wants to watch people having sex.

Walking into the AVN Adult Entertainment Expo held in Vegas this year was not just a peek into the world of eroticism but also a chance to get to know the last of the American Dreamers.

People enjoy porn because it allows us to unleash our inner passions. Deep, raw and intense the best pornography speaks to our wild side, the side we cannot show in public. Now imagine three full ballrooms full of things you cannot show in public. This is not for the weak of heart.

Porn stars are not unlike rock stars, former drummer of Skid Row and current adult entertainment actor Phil Varone [pictured] told me in an interview during the show.

“In the music industry sex sells. It’s expected and everyone wants it. For me it was a natural transition into the adult entertainment world. I was already a part of many swingers events and had been very open about it. After doing the cover of Playgirl it made sense to take the next step,” he explains passionately.

“When I decided to get into the adult entertainment business I sat down with Steven Hirsch of Vivid Entertainment and we came down with a set business model that would get us from point A to point Z. This is very much a business and a profitable one,” says Varone.

Varone was there not only to promote his recent sex tape but also to bring attention to his first toy. Using himself as a model the toy is the first of its kind to include a Prince Albert piercing. “I don’t wear mine much anymore but I used to a lot,” he notes.

Walking through the expo hall it’s clear why so many get into this business. For every strange idea there is new demand. Take, for instance, BoneCraft. BoneCraft plays on the idea that if you watch pornography on a regular basis there is a good chance you also play video games just as much. So why not do both at the same time? The DVDs offered at the show allow the viewer to watch hardcore and explicit videos of your favorite WoW characters having sex. Carnal passion has entered the digital age.

“I make dildos, it’s what I’ve always done and it’s what I’m always going to do,” said a vendor to a curious customer on the expo floor later Friday afternoon. When even the Post Office is considering layoffs people need to find a way to eat. Some turn to painting, others make replicas of penises. One must admire the dreamers willing to take a chance on their passion.

Passion, in the end, is what it’s all about. You either follow it or you don’t. Many are willing to let their inner beasts out for all to see. Instead they sit in their cubicles desperately yearning for the weekend so they can do the kind of things they would never tell anyone but the closest of friends.

After two days at the expo it was hard to tell who was at the show to satisfy a curiosity and who was there because they were seriously invested in the business. Hardcore fans are of any industry are usually easy to spot. Most of us admit to watching porn occasionally, these fans advertise it loudly in everything they do.

Like caricatures of lonely middle-aged men from the Midwest these fans are the bread and butter of the industry. They can tell you the names, birthdays, body sizes and favorite hobbies of all their favorite stars. To many the Adult Entertainment Expo is as good as the Academy Awards or the Grammys. It takes a certain kind of person to proudly bring home an autographed photo of a porn star giving head, and for three days in Las Vegas they were everywhere. If big business is all about supply and demand the porn industry could live off of its hardcore fan base for years without hassle.

One must remember, for every fantasy there is a nightmare. Men and women around the world dream of being with a porn star, if only for one night. Actually being up close and personal with many of them gives you new perspective.

Talking with many of them is like standing up close to a hologram. On a certain angle and in the right light every single girl there was a knockout, the kind of women men fight wars over. But upon closer inspection the flaws become apparent. It was like going to a strip club on a Tuesday afternoon. Even the hottest girl there is wearing five pounds of makeup to cover up her C-section scars. Sometimes it is best to look and don’t touch.

But those scarred women are the first ones out on the battle lines of the new American Dream. Sex is their weapon and they give every opportunity all they have and more. The old cliché is that there are dreamers and there are doers. In this life it is the porn stars that are the doers, the ones unafraid to seek out the American Dream by any means necessary.


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