The Price Is Right

Many times when someone says, “You couldn’t pay me to _______”, they’re not being entirely truthful. Because, really, when the blank is filled in with something like “live in Iowa” or “wear capri pants, even for ten minutes” or “drink a shot glass of my own ________ [fill in with your preferred body fluid]”, the truth is that, if given enough money to pay their rent for a month, they’d do whatever they say they couldn’t be paid to do. This is especially true in Manhattan, where rents have been known to prompt people to actually have sex with the likes of a certain man whose name rhymes with Jonald Krump.
My mother and sister both claim they wouldn’t have sex with a certain man they know in real life, whom they’ve dubbed “The Million Dollar Man” because that’s how much they say you couldn’t pay them to do it. However, I still have a feeling that even they have their price. After all, they could have named this guy “The Two [or Three, etc.] Million Dollar Man”.
One of my sister’s friends, whom I’ll just call “P” due to the highly personal nature of this subject, isn’t quite as resistant. P has been known to say, without much consideration, that he would blow Hervé Villechaize for $75. But then again, P is a multi-megalo-millionaire, so for him it’s easy come, easy blow. Or maybe the other way around. I’m getting confused. (Mother, the room is getting dark! Tell Father I love him!)
Yesterday my staff and I went out onto the streets of Manhattan and conducted a survey in which we asked people native to the metropolitan area to name one thing they’ve said they wouldn’t do even if they were paid, but, in reality, they would do if offered one month’s rent. We were overwhelmed at how eager people were to respond! Here is a brief preliminary sampling of the findings.

  1. “Cuddle with Jocelyne Wildenstein. And what’s more, I’d take the money I saved and put it toward a lobotomy so I could excise that part of my brain responsible for retaining the memory of the experience!”
    Richard J. Wilkins, 52; Manhattan (Chelsea)
    $3,500

  2. “Switch to Pepsi”
    Mr. Kriko Pocky Flimflom, IV, 46; Manhattan (northwest corner of 27th and Sixth)
    $0

  3. “Work in another law office ever again with stuck-up lawyers who don’t realize that my job in the word processing center is just as important as theirs is and they couldn’t survive without me, those jerks”
    Cindy Kolaski, 32; Union City, New Jersey
    $475

  4. “Wear anything from Nike, because, of, like, child labor in Tokyo or Seoul or China or something”
    Rachel “Rain” Klein-Kessler, 21; Upper West Side, Manhattan
    $2,800

  5. “Eat at McDonald’s”
    Peter Brandt, 30; Hoboken, New Jersey
    $1,350

  6. “Wear a tie to work”
    Kevin Lange, 36; Brooklyn
    $100 (Lives with parents but gives his dad a monthly “dorm fee”)

  7. “Walk to work completely nude except for shoes and a clown nose”
    Jordanna Mielke, 51; Tribeca, Manhattan
    $3,700

  8. “Tightrope walk, without a net, between the Empire State Building and the Chrysler Building”
    Steven P. Hauser, 39; Upper East Side, Manhattan
    $12,000

  9. “Have a baby”
    Marilyn Schank, 28; Gramercy Park, Manhattan
    $2,400

  10. “Live in Manhattan!”
    Queenie Pittman-Knox, 70; Bronx
    $325

We will be here all night going through our notes for more gems, breaking only to watch American Idol. All of us here agree that you still couldn’t pay us enough to vote for Josh Gracin.
Stay tuned!