For as long as recorded history, when foreign armies move into conquered lands, legions of prostitutes follow. As a host of foreign fans continue to pour into Rio de Janeiro for the World Cup, the sex workers are close behind.
Prostitution is legal in Brazil, as long as it is with a man or woman over the age of 18. The Brazilian government is doing its part to ensure that convicted pedophiles are not allowed into the country, and leading up to the cup, Rio's police shut down one of the biggest brothels on Avenida Atlantica, called The Balcony, after they found underage girls working there.
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So there, in front of Fifa's official Fan Fest, sits the empty, former bordello. Spilling out onto the street in front of this empty building every night are hundreds of foreign tourists drinking canned beer, eating shish kabobs, and smoking weed while chatting up sex workers of all shapes, sizes, and genders.
All of this goes down under the watchful eye of the police, who stand around trying to guarantee that everyone is over the age of 18.
Are any one nation's fans more popular with the sex workers than the others? Is there a correlation with one nation's performance on the football pitch and their fans' performance in the bedroom? Who is scoring the most goals, so to speak, with Rio's sex-worker community? We set out, in the middle of a beer storm, to find out the answer to these important questions.
We stumbled onto the scene last night and decided to have a few more cans of beer to get warmed up. I went up to a few women and asked them if they would like to talk about it. They treated me like I was insane.
A transgendered woman called me over and said, "You can take my picture as much as you want. I've been in 22 adult movies. Just look up my name on the internet, Fabiane Spears. For me, the fans that are scoring the most goals are the French. They are polite, like the English. To me, being affectionate is more important than performance."
Once some of the women who were standing around saw what we were talking about they agreed to pose for a few photos as well, as long as we wouldn't show their faces.
"Because I'm a mom," a 26-year-old woman from the industrial suburbs told me, "I work in a store during the daytime and come down here during big events like Carnaval and this World Cup to make some extra money for my kids."
She pulled out her cell phone and showed me a photo of her sons. "These gringos are paying $300 a trick. That's more than I make during one week at the department store."
"Who is making the most goals with you during the World Cup?"
"I like the Italians."
"What about the Americans?"
"They are too worried about their dicks. But I'm generalizing here. Obviously, the person is more important than the nationality. You have to decide if it is worth going with the guy or not."
Another woman comes up and tells me that we can take her picture as long as we don't show her face because she has a jealous boyfriend.
"I like the Germans," she tells me, "and the Swiss."
"What about the Latin American fans? Aren't they scoring any goals?"
"These South Americans like to move from one woman to the next. When you hook up with a German guy, he usually keeps coming back."
And there you have it. The European teams may be taking a beating out on the pitch, but their fans are getting off just fine.