Is The Price Of “Sex” Getting Cheaper?

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I was strangely surprised to see the following message as inline text from a long time information donator to T.S.O.T.S.B. from a long time personal friend of mine. Normally she sends me links, pictures, and/or ideas to pick and choose from once or twice a month. But this time, this time she sent “words” from some place and did not reference a source of any sorts. Meaning, therefore I didn’t have an opportunity to see where all this came from. In the end, she used it to ask me a question about the strip club industry, she wanted to know if the “economy” determines how much money I make as a bartender or how much money a stripper is paid.

I wish I had a simple answer. Just as well, she was only trying to help me to tie into my “Sex sells everything” experiment I have been doing here and she just wanted to “show” that sex sells sex sometimes. As a bartender in a full nude strip club I tend to see many things the “average” person isn’t even aware is going on in the first place. To begin with, I see the flow of money, the exchanges that happen casually to “purchase” that special experience. A trend I have seen and heard is that there has became a new meaning to the arts of negotiation because, let’s all face the facts, people want more bang for their buck while paying as little as possible, so hard core economics comes into play. Strippers have a bottom line, of course, but they have the skills to never have to accept bottom dollar for anything they have to offer, they will not sell themselves short for any reason since they are there to separate customers from as much of their money as possible.

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“They keep talking about recovery, but for many folks, work doesn’t pay what it used to. According to a recent report, Manhattan and Los Angeles counties lead America in falling wages. In the counties which contain Dallas, Phoenix, and Chicago, workers are also seeing their paycheck shrink. We can add sex workers to the list of people dealing with falling income.

Th Economist examined over 190,000 profiles of female sex workers on websites that feature customer reviews. Based on that data, which covered 84 cities and 12 countries (with the majority of workers in the United States), an interesting trend was revealed: the price of an hour with a female sex worker has been plunging. The average cost nationwide in 2014 is $260, down from $340 back in 2006.

What’s going on? What a sex worker charges depends on many things, including what types of services are involved, the location, and the physical attributes of the worker. Sex workers who conform to Western standards of beauty can charge more. Blondes get a premium, as do those with slim (but not too skinny) bodies and ample breasts. Getting fake boobs can really pay off in sex work: “For those not naturally well endowed, breast implants may make economic sense: going from flat-chested to a D-cup increases hourly rates by approximately $40, meaning that at a typical price of $3,700, surgery could pay for itself after around 90 hours.”

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Other ways sex workers can charge more is to provide niche services like having sex with two men at once, or providing S&M role-playing. Big-city sex workers in places like New York, Houston, Los Angeles, and London can charge more, too.

According to the Economist, the reason behind the drop in price is partly the 2007-’08 financial crisis. Other factors, like the migration of poorer sex workers into richer areas can also cause a drop in prices. This trend has been happening in Europe since the European Union expanded to include poorer eastern European countries, which has sent workers across borders. A 2013 article in Time magazine noted that Germany had become the “Cut-Rate Prostitution Capital of the World,” with thousands of brothels and “hundreds of thousands of prostitutes,” many from places like Romania and Bulgaria, dealing with intense competition and pushed-down prices. (Prostitution became legal in Germany in 2002.) In Berlin, oral sex from an Eastern European sex worker can reportedly be had for as little as $13.

The Internet is to blame, too, as more people are selling sex online. Because it’s easier and more discreet to sell sex online, women who in the past may have avoided such work are signing up. “More attractive and better-educated women, whose marital and job prospects are therefore better, are more likely to consider sex work easily if it is arranged online,” notes the report. Technology increases the efficiency and speed of matching client to sex worker: there are even apps which allow customers to filter sex workers according to specifications like breast size, age or height. A new German app even promises that you can order a sex worker the way you would order an Uber car, using GPS to connect client to worker.

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But changing attitudes toward sex work in our society are also part of this trend. The stricter a society is about casual and adulterous sex, the more sex work will be in demand. The acceptance of premarital sex and divorce mean that men are less likely to be driven to sex workers because they can’t get their sexual needs met anywhere else.

It’s a bummer to be a sex worker when prices are falling. But interestingly, it looks like incomes may not have fallen as steeply as the decline in prices would suggest, because sex workers have been able to cut expenses.”

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The Extreme Mistaken Identity

brokeI spend a fair share of time buying and selling miscellaneous things on Craigslist and on eBay. Much of the stuff I hunt for is what I call local meaning I can get there within 3 hours or so. I have buying and selling like this for years and tend to travel a bit to pick different items up. Rarely, if ever, do I have problems with anybody because the people I buy and sell with are doing the same thing I’m doing which is buying stuff to fix/repair and then resell more often than not. I try not to get myself into deals that are too far away because then that just becomes more expensive in the end.

This trip would lead me to Lake Charles Louisiana to pickup a 40s Ford pickup (pictured below, picture provided from Craigslist ad) which I thought would be a good truck to finish off my 4×4 bastardization truck using my restored 70s Bronco chassis (pictured at bottom). Anyway, I had spoken with an older gentleman (spoke with a heavy Cajun accent) twice about the truck and a price of $1100.00 cash was agreed on by both of us. He told me that his nephew would contact me with the address and a good time to meet. Yesterday, Thursday, ended up being the day. I pushed for Saturday or Sunday but the nephew was hell-bent it had to be when he said. So be it, right.

The trip from my house to Lake Charles is about 2 hours so I figured it wouldn’t be too bad of a trip during the week to make. I loaded up my truck and trailer and set off to Louisiana. I wasn’t familiar with the address I was given but I did know the area of town I was going. When I arrived at my destination (as said to be correct by my GPS and the GPS in my cellphone) I was presented with the house (pictured above). Thinking there was a mistake I reset my GPS. Apparently I was at the address I was given. Thinking there was a mistake I took a picture of it and sent it to my wife to let her know I was sent on a wild goose chase. She wasn’t happy with me to say the least and explained to me I needed to figure out what in the hell was going on.

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After 20 or so attempts I was able to get ahold of the nephew who explained to me that I sounded like a white cop on the phone. He further explained that they didn’t do business with white cops. I was given the address to the abandoned house so I could be checked out by friends of his. When I asked if there was a problem with me being white he told me no as long as I had the cash and wasn’t a white cop. He told me he was sending his friends over to the house to check me out in person and if I checked out then they would escort me to his uncle’s house to pick up the truck. He informed me two of his friends would be there shortly and I was to give them the cash. Once they had the cash I would get a call that it was okay to follow his friends. I was warned I better be legit because this was the wrong place to be a white cop.

Once I hung up with him I decided to just leave. In my head I ran down the scenario and it ends up with me being robbed and killed, leaving me to rot in the abandon house. Even though I did have my twins (Desert Eagle .50AE x2) accompanying me on this little excursion I was not prepared to be in an ambush gunfight with an unknown number of people. I headed out shortly before sunset to return home. I will never know who showed up for the meet and greet last night. Tell you the truth I really don’t care. I haven’t heard from the man with the heavy Cajun accent or the nephew and I don’t suspect I will either. Sad, if you ask me, that this all played out the way it did. Perhaps my wife was right, the deal just was just too good to be true. Apparently so.

I have had some time to analyze this whole thing. Since I was troubled with heavy concern that allot of assumptions were made, inaccurately I might add, about me. Okay, they assumed one thing that was right, I am white. I won’t do them the same disservice by assuming I know what race my new friends are because I never met any of them in person. Accents, slang, and how someone talks are not tell signs of one’s race. Being I was bothered still by the events, I contacted the local sheriff’s department for that parish in Lake Charles where I was given a very hardy “yeah, yeah, yeah, we’ll look into it when we get an officer freed up”. Who cares, right? No harm no foul, right? Sure, I guess so.

Now that this bullshit is over all I can think is how sweet that old beast would have looked when I go done with her. So, my hunt will continue and sooner or later I will get the body I was always looking for. I think what pisses me off the most is that I never would have guessed that junk sellers would be scamming people or trying to roll people for that cash. Makes re-think how I will do business in the future for sure. What a stupid reason to get killed. But, my optimist side has thought that perhaps I drove away from a fantastic deal and there was nothing to be worried about. My realist side says I made the right choice.

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The Art Of Communication In 2013

In my daily ritual to observe my surroundings I often forget to look in the mirror and take notice. In this day and age it would seem that everyone has a cell phone of some sorts and isn’t afraid to use it. I have mentioned before that I often have to make times in my house that are cell phone free just so some live people time can happen. Some examples of when a person in my house is forbidden from even looking at their phone for any reason. The number one time is if we are talking to one another, if I’m talking to you I take precedence over anything that could possibly be happening on your phone. If we are talking and you pull your phone out I will assume the conversation is over and walk away. The second time is when everyone is assembled at the dining room table for a meal. The only person I allow exception to this rule is my wife. Why? Only because she is a manager for multiple doctor’s offices and a handful are open 24/7. So, if her work cell phone goes off she will check it to gage the importance. If it is important she will excuse herself from the table to take care of her business and then return. I listen while we eat because I hear the message tones, I hear the ring tones, and I hear the vibrations happening. My kids know if they even glance in the direction of their phone they will lose it for a bare minimum of 24 hours. Friends, family, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, games, calls, and texting can wait until we are done eating. Third is family time when we all get together to watch a movie or play a game. I refuse to pause either so someone can take a text or call. Plus, I treat that time like being in a public theater because I don’t want to hear the ringtone or somebody jacking with their phone.
 
I have spent some time talking with my family about all of this and they seem to take my wishes and desires into consideration most of the time. I asked each one of my children and my wife to give me an estimate of how many texts they send and receive a day. I broke this down into 3 basic categories which were family, friends, spouse/significant other, and work. The results were kind of interesting and I thought I would take a moment and share them real quick before moving on.
 
Son, age 12
Friends 5 texts
Family 25 texts
Girlfriend n/a
Work n/a
 
Daughter, age 17
Friends 25 texts
Family 50 texts, 2-3 calls
Boyfriend 100+, 4-5 calls
Work n/a
 
Daughter, age 23 (lives in Utah)
Friends 25 texts, 4-5 calls
Family 25+ texts, 4-5 calls
Fiance 40+ texts, 4-5 calls
Work 3+ texts, call occasionally
 
My wife
Friends 25+ texts, 1-2 calls
Family 25+ texts, 4-5 calls
Spouse (me) 50+ texts, 2-3 calls
Work 75+ texts, 25+ calls
 
Me
Friends 30+ texts, 1-2 calls
Family 5+ texts, 1-2 calls
Spouse 50+ texts, 2-3 calls
Work 0 texts, calls occasionally
Work 30+ e-mails
 
What did I learn from all of this? First, I doubt my wife and daughters were being 100% honest with me or themselves. However, there is much more going on with everyone’s smart phone than meets the eye, the texting is only a part of it, and for me personally it isn’t really the big part of the time spent on my phone. What do I mean? Well, as some examples, my kids also use their phones to view Youtube videos, my daughters are constantly on Instagram and Facebook, and everyone plays at least one game regularly. But there is much more, at least for me, since my phone serves many purposes for me personally. Let me explain. First, lets start with my work. My work extension is forwarded to my phone because I’m rarely at my desk. My work e-mail is forwarded to my phone because I’m rarely at my desk to check and/or reply. My actual work is done remotely on my phone and later downloaded onto the server at the end of the day. Allot of actual “work” is done from my phone. Luckily, since it’s my personal phone, my employers reimburses me $150.00 per pay period because I use it for work purposes. Which is great because it pays for all five lines I have thru Verizon, all with unlimited talk, text, and data. But, what they don’t know is I pay under $100.00 a month so I pocket the other $200.00 for my “troubles” and “services”. It is also the easy way for me to take my work home with me paper free and work remotely when needed which is only about once or twice in a three month period.
 
I do a whole lot more from my phone. Let’s start with this blog and my five (5) other blogs, all done from my phone. Yes, there are (6) of them that I keep updated primarily from only my phone. You weren’t aware there were six (6)? Take a moment and see the links section. I’m also pretty active @ Blogcatalog, or at least I try to be active there. I’m pretty active on Pinterest as well. Plus, I use Facebook and Google+ to promote my blogs, which actually doesn’t take up much time at all, but I do have a presence. I buy and sell a buttload of things on eBay and Craigslist so I have to monitor that always. That is where most of my actual phone calls are generated from. My phone is my hand allot during the day but I tend to not be on it much at all once I get home because I don’t want others around me on their phones. Additionally, I have a home phone number, but no home phone, so all calls that come to that number get forwarded straight to my cell phone. The nice thing about that is that nobody knows it is happening unless I say something. Also, I can make calls where my home phone will show up in the caller i.d. as well. Eventhough I do not have an actual “smart home” I do have many of the features associated with it. If it is electronic and plugged in I can operate it from my phone. I have my security routed through my phone which includes a handful of cameras and the intercom system so I can see people at my gate and talk to them while I am at work and they think I am up in the house. Since I drive quite a bit for work and personally, I use the GPS feature on my phone always. Since I am outdoors so much either at home or on my Goldwing I also like to have the weather at my fingertips.
 
By the end of any given workday I’m tired of my phone, being on my phone, and just plain seeing it. If you are thinking I spend allot of time on my phone you are right, I do. I often wonder what it would be like not to have my phone. Well, life would be simpler that is for sure. My evening time is reserved for what I want to do and the family time we have. You never get that lost time back. Weekends are about the same, we spend much of the time at home doing a variety of things. My time is mostly spent outside doing one thing or another. I have a hard time just sitting on the couch and staring at the television. I think this family survey was beneficial because it has shown each one of us what we actually are using are phones for. Take this post for example, the entire thing written using my phone and published from my phone. What about you, what do you do with your phone?