June 16, 2011

Mama Viv's Vasectomy Shoppe Muscled Out of Business by High-End New York Vasectomy Firm

In another blow to the local economy, Mama Viv’s Vasectomy Shoppe is closing its doors after 37 years of serving the Lavina Avenue community. The shuttering of their Harrison Square location is the most recent in a string of local business failures stemming from the influx of competition from national vasectomy chains.

“This is a tragedy,” sobbed Vivian “Mama” Gronski. “This Shoppe began as a dream my grandparents had when they came to this country. I thought we were going to be able to survive, but we just can’t compete with Big Vasectomy.”

Though many notable chains have moved into town over the years, Mama’s had managed to stay afloat in increasingly crowded waters. Customers flocked to the Old-World stylings and the friendly, hands-on, and personalized services that Ms. Gronzki and her staff provided.

“We offered vasectomies with a human face,” said Juan “Pop” Ortega Ruiz, Ms. Gronski’s long-time business partner and lover. “You just can’t get that from the big guys.”

It was with the introduction of VasectoMax, the New York City-based vasectomy giant, that the competition became too much to bear. The chain has seven Lavina Avenue locations, with plans for three more in the next five years.

Established in 2007 at the height of the vasectomy bubble, VasectoMax quickly gobbled up the competition and grew to become the largest-grossing business in the Reproductive Services industry.

VasectoMax markets themselves as a purveyor of low-cost, high-quality general vasectomies, and higher-cost, specialty vasectomies, as well as related products and services. Their low-cost options target the average American bulk-vasectomy consumer, while their higher-end options cater to vasectomy connoisseurs and other niche markets.

According to pamphlets provided by VasectoMax, their Green-V Package boasts “only the most ecologically-forward vasectomy practices and products,” while their Platinum-V Package offers a spa-like retreat complete with “facials, massage, and only the finest in European vasectomies.”     

“VasectoMax fulfills the needs of a wide variety of American vasectomy consumers at many convenient neighborhood locations at a reasonable price,” said  Albert Trinkle, VasectoMax’s head of media relations. “We don’t simply sever and seal the vasa deferentia in order to prevent the seminal ejaculation of our clients, we make memories.”

Even given the amenities provided by large vasectomy firms such as VasectoMax or V, the French-owned vasectomy conglomerate, Apartment 3ers can’t hide their disappointment that Mama’s is soon to be no more.

“Mama knew me by name,” said coach Barry Sutton, who has been saving for a vasectomy for years, and often found himself at Mama’s to compare prices and get a feel for the business.

“The staff is friendly, it’s a comfortable atmosphere,” Mr. Sutton continued. “Mama was even going to let me get a vasectomy on layaway. At [VasectoMax] you literally take a number when you walk in the door.”

Bustling sidewalks and busy streets have given way to scrawled “Out of Business” signs and shuttered storefronts around Harrison Square, the once-thriving heart of the Vasectomy District.

In addition to Mama’s, victims of the vasectomy juggernaut include Alfredo’s Vasectomies ‘n’ More, Hi-Society Vasectomy Parlor, and Vasecto-Me/Vesecto-You, as well as a baker’s dozen of other lesser-known vasectomy firms, all of whom have declared bankruptcy in the past year.

“It’s sad that the next generation won’t know what it’s like to go to a real Mom-and-Pop vasectomy clinic,” Ms. Gronski said.

“The experience is so much better. Maybe the family-owned vasectomy shop will make a comeback some day.”