Don’t Blame It on Rio

“Just continue being your slutty self,” she continued, “because once you say, I’m getting older and I can’t do this and I can’t do that—then you just age. I was just talking to a friend of mine who worked at a nursing home, and he said, ‘What goes on in a nursing home you would not believe. I think they give them Viagra.’ And I thought, I have no kids and I’ve got a very small family, so when it’s my time, I figure, if I can’t stay here and can’t afford to have somebody take care of me, give me my drugs in a nursing home. Tell me where all the horny old men are, and I’ll keep them all smiling and laughing and I’ll just be the nursing home slut! Nasty old Vanessa!”

Does she ever get sick of sex?

“I don’t see sex is a thing I need,” she said. “I have fun with it. I didn’t really consider myself promiscuous, by my definition of promiscuous. I’m a head person, I’m an Aries, so I live here”—she pointed to her lovely noggin—“I like a good mindfuck and I like the chase and I like those moments between making contact. I like all the heat and all that expectation.”

Will she ever marry?

“No, no, I’m sorry, I don’t believe in marriage. Marriage is just a thing to control human beings from going buck wild.”

So you don’t live with your boyfriend?

“Sometimes yes, sometimes no. I’d be insufferable to live with.”

Did she really once have a fantasy about going into a prison and sucking out all the testosterone?

“I actually had a girl e-mail me, saying, ‘Wow, I thought I was the only one who had that fantasy!’ I have had that fantasy because those are hungry guys. I just like animalistic type of hungry sex. I’ll bet you there are far more women than you think who have that prison fantasy. It’s natural.”

Thirty percent of your fan mail is from prisoners?

“A lot of fan mail from prison,” she said. “They’re all very respectful. Letters from San Quentin, from all the major prisons.”

What is her idea of a good time these days?

“Walking my dog on a trail deep in the woods. I’ve found my bliss. Since I’ve gotten Matilda, she has really centered me. Because I guess, you know, I have to take care of her. I’ve never had a dog. I’ve always had cats, and cats are very independent. So having her has kind of sparked my little maternal instinct there.”

She never wanted to be like her mother?

“Yes, like being a victim or subservient—but which I see in her as beauty, because she’s who she is. I just didn’t want to be that way, because I see how she was hurt by my father. So I was like, No man’s going to hurt me. And also my father was very domineering. Freud would have a field day.”

If she’d had a better father, would she have gone into porn?

“Well, he was a good father. They raise you how they were raised, so he was raised very strict, so all he knew was to be strict,” she said. “He didn’t want to hurt me. I’m sure he didn’t want to hurt my mother—but maybe, because she used to read sexology a lot—maybe she wasn’t sexual enough.”

I’d read in her book that her biggest fears were crying and acknowledging love.

“I think people have a misconception that because you enter into a life of your choosing and you dare to go where society says you couldn’t, that that somehow makes you like a hardened criminal person or something,” she said. “No, I have real emotions, and I’m not the only one afraid of love. A lot of people are. I am just able to speak about it, and in retrospect, now that I’ve lived my life in the public and now that I’m doing this book—why withhold anything? I mean, those are the things that scare me. I just think that’s as common as sliced bread. Everyone’s afraid of being hurt. W
hat I’m saying is, society puts people down in my business as being unfeeling—but we are, we just dare to live, to live how we want to.”

She still goes to swing clubs?

“It’s kind of odd, being Vanessa Del Rio and going to a swing club—you can’t just be part of the crowd,” she said. “People recognize you and you feel like you have to be a little bit on or something; you have something to prove. So it can be a little bit of a spoiler that way. But it’s nice to be in that kind of environment now and then, where everybody is just sexually abandoned. I’ll tell you, swingers are a lot wilder than me. I’m still shy, basically.

“I’m not just a slobbering slut,” she continued. “I just lived my life outwardly, in public, and put it out there. Because there a lot of people who do a lot of strange things, and nobody ever knows about it. I’ve lived an honest life.

“You know,” she added, “by today’s standards, I was being just slightly slutty.”