It has been revealed that prostitutes in Pittsburgh’s airport corridor accept gift cards as payment for their services.
These are not the gift cards you see on the wire rack carousels, near the check out, with the colorfully imprinted logos of all your favorite mall stores. I give recent graduates, birthday celebrators and those near the bottom of my Christmas list those kinds of gift cards (others get lottery tickets, the ultimate last-minute impulse-buy of gifts).
The idea of trading fifty dollars worth of Starbucks lattes or seventy-five bucks in home fix-up supplies at Lowe’s for the requisite amount of sexual favors from a Moon Township call girl is not far-fetched. There was a time when many everyday purchases, sleazy or otherwise, were bartered. I’ve got a bushel of apples. You’ve got five pounds of newly milled flour. I’ve got a gift card. You’ve got nothing on your schedule for the next fifteen minutes.
The gift cards in question are not brand-store specific, but VISA gift cards. They’re bought through your local bank, in specific amounts and can be used in any location that takes debit cards.
Apparently, that list now includes selected spots near the airport.
I’m not an expert on prostitution. Instead, I’m the guy at the party who will go all night without eating because I watched as someone I did not know touched the chip dip with his finger. Being just one step from “Howard Hughes” on the germ awareness scale, I’m not coming within a 747’s length of bedding down with an airport sex rental.
Please don’t be offended, working girls. It’s me, not you. I’m sure you’re fine and very good at what you do.
And you’re smart.
You take VISA.
I do know that when a prostitute is arrested, any cash she is holding at the time of her arrest can be confiscated as evidence. With a VISA gift card, smart phone access to the internet and the right software, an intrepid sexual entrepreneur could, in theory, immediately deposit the purchase amount of the card into her account, on-line.
Don’t you love technology?
The gift card date makes far less sense for the customer. Your fifth-period Computer Studies teacher told you that each and every keystroke is traceable. She wasn’t kidding.
Once the intrepid sexual entrepreneur has “cashed” in her gift card, you, the original purchaser, are done (figuratively, if not literally). The direct connection you made between flights is now a direct connection that can be used in court as evidence.
Not to burst your dreams of a night out in Beaver County.
To me (once again, a reminder that I am not an expert), it would be much more efficient to buy an actual gift card to a specific store. Pick up a hundred dollar card to Best Buy while standing with your grocery cart at Giant Eagle. Use that as payment for your crack-addled creature of the night somewhere west of Moon.
Weeks later, as your sitting in the doctor’s waiting room, she will be happy with her new iPod Nano (on sale). As an added bonus, the Benjamin you dropped at the grocery store saved you pennies on your next purchase of gas, so it won’t be as expensive to drive out to the airport and repeat the whole fun process.
Or (in your case) a drive to your divorce lawyer’s office in Blawnox once your test results return.
No need to thank me for the advice.
I’ll be over here, watching the chip dip like a hawk, hungry and paranoid.