Collecting the folklore and uses of plants

Cut flowers banned from brothels

Posted on by royvickery |

In The Days of Anna Madrigal (2014), the final novel in his Tales of the City series, Armistead Maupin relates now the 92-year-old Mrs Madrigal visits her childhood home in Nevada, formerly a brothel run by her mother.  The site of the former  Blue Moon brothel is now the Blue Moon Family Fun Centre and Casino, in the lobby of which is an ‘enormous arrangement of roses (artificial but convincing until she touched them) …  She smiled at this effort – the wrongheadedness of it – since cut flowers had not been allowed in the original Blue Moon.  Mama had very few superstitions … but she had clung to the orthodoxy of her profession.  Cut flowers were seen as omens of death in a brothel, emblematic of beauty cut down in its prime.  You did not bring roses to the girls without catching hell from Mama’.

Any comments would be appreciated.

Image: flower stall, Kensington High Street, London Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, March 2022.

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