Humor essayists aren’t paid very much. Some of the best works of short-form comedy—pieces like “Vagina Facts My Boyfriend Slept Through In Health Class” and “Vote For Me, An Honest Republican,” which I haven’t actually seen but which I’m sure exist and are fantastic—were written for cheap, if not for free. Speaking of free, for a limited time, you can get a free month of stamps by going to Stamps.com and using the promo code “SELLOUT.” That’s Stamps.com, promo code S-E-L-L-O-U-T.
Yes, I sold ad space at the end of the first paragraph. Yes, I know that the end of the first paragraph is traditionally where the humorous premise goes. There’s just no money in the budget right now for humorous premises, or wacky anecdotes, or even silly-sounding words like papaya. I’ve crunched the numbers; based on the going rate for comedy essays exactly this good, branded content makes far more sense.
Here’s a little something for you though. A rabbi, a Catholic bishop, and a Muslim walk into a hat shop. The rabbi buys a yarmulke and says, “my hat is so small because I am nothing before God.” The Catholic bishop buys a mitre and says, “my hat is so tall because I want to reach up to God in heaven.” Then the Muslim buys a taqiyah and says, “my hat was completely free because they’re having a buy-two-get-one sale and he treated us all as one big group.” That’s right, buy two get one free at Sal’s Religious Headwear Emporium in Greenwich Village! I pray that you stop by soon.
Embedded advertising is the only way I can make this profitable. Consider this: my last essay took a month to write, and I was paid nothing for it. That’s an entire month of rent, utilities, and marijuana bills that I had to pay with nothing but the salary I made from the marketing job at which I wrote a humor essay in cell H7 of an Excel spreadsheet.
I have some savings too, but not much. It’s mostly gift cards I got on birthdays past, which disappear as fast as kindling, especially when I use them as kindling. I’ve heard Hanukkah money lasts about eight times longer than expected, but I wouldn’t know, since my parents had to go and be agnostic. Savings disappear especially fast in New York, where rent bills are written in letters cut and pasted from magazines. Even a humble, cramped room in deep Queens is $700/month, so imagine what I’m paying for this loft space in Union Square, which, by the way, fucking sick. Functional fireplace.
Fine, fine, I’ll give you a little taste of the good stuff. I have a killer joke up my sleeve that I can tell you’re going to love. Just go ahead and whitelist this site real quick. Trust me, it’ll be worth it for the joke, and also to learn how you can quadruple your stamina with Alphacock, a pill guaranteed to make you the man you assume other men are. Act fast—supplies won’t last, but you totally will!*
I’m just trying to have something to show my parents. They call me every few weeks to ask how writing is coming, which is, if you ask me, extremely aggressive of them. I’ve decided to stop answering the calls until I have some earnings to report, which should be soon now that I’ve got all this Verve Energy Drink.
That totally reminds me of this organic thought that I’m now having. Did you homeboys know that if you sign up to be a Verve affiliate salesperson for just $650, you can get paid over triple that for every ten new affiliates you get to sign up? You might be thinking, “is Verve Energy Drink right for me? Does it really have 77 ingredients? Is this the same Verve Energy Drink that was fined $238 million by the FTC in 2016 for operating as a pyramid scheme preying on college students?” Yes! It is right for you, thanks to its 77 plant-based ingredients, and it conceded no wrongdoing in that settlement. Remember, homeboys, Verve: No Wrongdoing!
My dad just texted.
“U shud make last essay into book”
“Wud make better first chapter than most classics have”
Wait, that’s brilliant. There’s always money in the book industry. But how can I support myself while I write? I’ll lose my marketing job as soon as this piece is published, thanks to that Excel bit. I’d cut down on costs by getting roommates for the second through fourth bedrooms, but then where would I put my 17,990 cans of Verve? There’s got to be a better way for me to support myself as an artist and for you to receive ad-free content.
Well, guess what, folks? There is: Patreon, everyone’s favorite subscription service to support artists! Check out Patreon.com to experience the joy of the losing side of a free rider dilemma! Patrons will receive exclusive content, including biannual (every other, not twice per) updates, the occasional tasteful nude, and one entire pallet of Verve! That’s not all—for a limited time, every donation you make to my personal checking account will be matched up to 20% by me with a donation toward my savings account. For the price of just a large almond milk matcha latte from that coffee shop where the baristas are sweet and have neck tattoos per day, you can liberate me from a life of corporate promotion and help me pursue my dream of incessant self-promotion. Pay with credit card, PayPal, or by sending me a check in the mail utilizing a free stamp from Stamps.com! (Sorry, the contract said I had to mention it twice.) Don’t wait; the time is now to pledge.
*Disclosure: The AlphaCock legal team has obliged me to disclose that the company has in no way entered an advertising arrangement with me. I was offered no financial remuneration for my testimonial. I am just a satisfied customer looking to spread the word.