Craigslist the Best (and Saddest) Socio-Economic Barometer We’ve Got

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Have you heard the good news?  Gas is now hovering close to $90 a barrel!

I mean, that’s kind of overshadowed by the current economic crisis, but I’ll be damned if I can’t find a silver lining to this cloud (I mean, there’s still a market for silver, and I can hock it, right?).

While it’s easy to try and make light of the situation at hand, the weight of our collapsing/collapsed economy is heavy, and getting heavier each day.  While I have been fortunate thus far, many people near and dear to me suffer, all to varying degrees (and I bet you now my parents are glad that I took the humanities route in college… Had I gone with business or finance, there’s a good shot I’d now be taking a bigger hit than I already am.  Luckily for me, English majors are taught—along with structure and post-modernism—that we’ll likely be underpaid our entire lives, so I feel well-prepared).

The long and short of it is that people are feeling the crunch and are using any means of escapism possible to alleviate some of the stress caused by lost jobs, lost wages, lost homes, etc.

Some use humor (like those who created this doctored Economist cover), others use anger (check out the 12 Angry Men blog).  The ones that interest me most, though, are the ones that view plummeting stocks as a reason to throw caution to the wind.

I’m talking about Craigslisters.

Gawker had a nice little piece that sparked my interest in this topic, noting how people are turning to casual sex as a means of condolence.

But surely these have to be isolated incidents, right?


Here are some Craigslist postings (all excerpts are SFW, or at least what I’ll post is..) that highlight how bad things have really gotten:

Mutually Beneficial? – 26 (Manhattan)

So the rough economy just affected my job…

and while I’m getting by, it’s going to be tough.

I wondered if there is a gentleman out there who would be interested in a mutually beneficial relationship. I’m obviously home a lot, so maybe we can work something out?

lefty intellectual seeks same (Chinatown / Lit Italy)

++ if you’re kinky, though it’s not necessary. In kink I prefer men who are switches or submissive and am not so much the submissive type myself though sometimes it happens with the right chemistry

Below is something of a laundry list of my attributes, beyond that which I’ve already stated:

tattooed, pierced



possessor of a mind equally dirty and keenly intelligent

sexy sultry snarky sassy sarcastic shy

grad/PhD student

influenced by both post structuralist and Marxist/political economy theory


work in progress, necessarily incomplete

committed to accountability, transparency, self improvement, revolutionary political praxis, anti-authoritarian politics and social justice

fierce feisty fabulous

Take my mind off the markets

I need a new playmate to take my mind off the souring economy. Please be slim-average weight as I am, and have a brain that you use beyond planning your next meal. This isn’t just about knocking boots, it’s about hanging out and enjoying each other’s company in a safe and drama-free setting. After all, we need something to do in between sessions, right?

Can you keep a secret? – m4w – 48 

Attractive professional married man seeks attractive, clean cut

cute, fit woman 18-40 hurting from the economy open to private

discreet safe encounters with a super nice and educated guy.

Prefer quite, low-key, non-smoker/drinker.


Here goes: looking for a benefactor relationship with one generous man – no drama/stds or CL addicts.

Reason for looking for such relationship: Was laid off like so many other people. So why not the new trend of benefactor relationship where the arrangement is clear from the beginning and no drama while I sort my job situation out as the economy rebounds.

Lets Go out and have fun!!

economy sucks lets go have fun and stimulate the economy the only way we can!! drink and dance all night long!!

 A Private Helpful Arrangement – m4w -33

Craigslist is a very interesting place or so I have found out. Where else can a nice looking and nice guy who is single and not in a relationship go and find someone who is at the present financially challenged and open to enjoying a fair exchange for some extra special attention?

 *And my personal favorite:

 Achtung Sugar Babies of Manhattan! (Downtown)

Grim tidings, no? The economic realities are shifting and bad days are ahead for the beautiful face/beautiful ass set.

Embrace bohemia!

By the way, I am single and super cute, fit, well read and traveled, unconventional and not rich. I wont take you to crappy bourgy restaurants. I certainly wont buy you a goddamned handbag. But we will eat good cheap peasant food and ride the motorcycle and see a few museums this fall. Why wait? Tell your hedge fund man adieu before his firm tells him adieu.

I’m waiting to hear from you. Send a pic or two. Chin u

So now you’ve seen that the economy is affecting more than people’s wallets and homes.  It’s clearly affecting their judgment (and possibly penicillin intake), as well.  While there is nothing wrong with looking for a little love via personal ads (though, I do have a terrible story about my biological father and his sister, my aunt, that might make you re-think some of your dating methods…), using a failing economy to raise your, um, “spirits” is just poor form, and the proliferation of these posts on Craigslist is alarming.

That is, until someone figures out how to capitalize off it.  For at least $700B, give or take another $500B.

But whatever.

Jackie for

Updated by Danielle Oct 30 2017

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