Friday 28 September 2007

Craigslist round up

Without wanting to disappear up my own arse about this topic, it is always tremendously reassuring to touch base with some of the other hacks for hire on craigslist, and to discover that they're selling themselves for $25 an hour and they haven't proofread their own ads properly. That's about a fair rate for that service.

And then you read through somebody's samples and they've got a portfolio of quite well written web copy and then you spot some glaring proofreading oversight. Jesus. Do these people not read the work they do forty five times before releasing it?

And then you have a look around at what's happening over in general community: A posting from a woman who's 25, feels she might be bipolar, and has no health insurance. What do you do when you're mentally ill and uninsured in America? Cry for help on craigslist, of course! Or buy a lottery ticket. Call yourself a high class companion and sell your body for $5000 a night to 'select discreet gentlemen' over in Casual Encounters.

Calling all black girls! There's a very discreet, sweet, dawn-to-earth (yes that's right ladies, dawn to earth) gentleman looking for a dinner-for-sex arrangement in the strictly platonic section. And if you strike it lucky, you'll get to do it again and again and again.

I wonder if Alanis Morissette knows that one of her lyrics has entered internet dating as a term for casual sex? I'm sure she'd be delighted. Lots of people seem to be looking for friends-with-benefits, or in the craiglist-nuanced usage, alive-human-to-fuck-tonight.

And then there's the whole genre of people who go into the toilet to take their dating profile picture. Clearly it's because there's a big mirror in there so they can check themselves out as they suck in and go click.

But the toilets and towels in the background and generally claustrophobic vibe, combined with the camera held out arm's length mid-picture really lets you know everything you could have hoped to ask them. And the poses. Ah the poses. Poses that suggest hidden, off- camera pep talks with acquaintances poised on the edge of the bath, rolling skunk spliffs: "What disemboweled body? Not in MY bathroom!" or "Hit me up again Mario, I feel like I'm gonna die, I KNOW one more hit will get me onto the next level", or "I'm gonna get REAL paid for this rack and all I have to do is arch and pout, arch and pout". It's not a pretty thing, the craigslist personals section. Not to mention the

"very successful plastic surgeon seeking a mutually beneficial relationship with a very special, very attractive and very, very sexy young woman" types,

and people interested in paying $1500 a month for GFE (girl-friend-experience, for hire, which seems to be simulated girlfriendness, without the commitment or reality).

This is the seamy side of the city, folks. They took down Times Square and built Craigslist. And how it rocks, oh how it rocks.

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