by Furry Girl

11.23.13

"If you make a thousand dollars a week, every week, you’re still only making around $50,000.  This is by no means money to sneeze at; it’s more than my mother ever made, and she had a Master’s degree.  But consider that according to Wikipedia, in 2006 the average weekly wage in Manhattan was $1,453.  A thousand dollars a week is good sex worker money.  It feels rich to me and always will.  But in New York City, it doesn’t even make you average. You will be able to pay your bills.  You can save.  You might even be able to afford health insurance next year.  You will not be able to go on shopping sprees at Nordstrom’s.

Writing checks to my landlord and Time Warner certainly feels luxurious to me, but it’s not … seductive.  It’s just baseline what I should be able to do with a fucking job."

-- Calico Lane  in The Myth of Seductive Money on misscalico.com

The comment I left:

Excellent post.

I have never made the sums of money everyone assumes from the insta-rich reputation of online porn. I started in 2002, not 1996, so the bubble for my part of the industry had already burst by the time I was 18. I was happy to make a lower middle class income at a job I love (because I’m a genuine pervert), but as you said, a grand a week doesn’t add up to an income that hooks you like heroin. I went on a date once with a guy who assumed I must make “a few hundred thousand” a year. I burst out laughing. My best weeks were when I earned $2000, but then I also had plenty of $500 weeks, too. I know so many other sex workers who are also approximately lower-middle class, but no one ever thinks of us when drawing up the dichotomy that the only two ways to be a whore are if you’re a destitute, abused street-based worker selling $10 blowjobs for crack, or an elite escort who accompanies celebrities and bankers on trips to Dubai. Most sex workers seem like we’re somewhere on the spectrum of working-to-middle class.

The punchline is how often professional feminists and other such types (who often quietly came from wealthy families themselves) and who make more money than I ever did in porn accuse me and sex workers like me of being some sort of privileged elite who, unlike “real” women, don’t “really” work. Shit, I wish!





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