I have bad habits or I had bad habits but now I have given up those bad habits and I still hold on to a small piece of them. I love reading the Casual Encounters, m4w, on Craigslist. No matter what city I am in, one of the first things I do is check in on the menfolk seeking instant sexual gratification from women. They are always up to something and rarely do they adhere to traditional conventions of language and grammar usage.
In smaller towns, there are a lot of missives from “country boys.” Sometimes they want to cuddle and make out. Other times, they are far more explicit. Don’t let country boys fool you. Then there are the college students in college towns, so very young, and mostly they want to just get laid and they aren’t going to be too picky about it or they are and they want an 18 – 22 year old co-ed with a slamming body or they are looking for a tutor, if you know what I mean because they need to “cram” for a final exam in physical education.
Anything goes in big cities. Visiting men want you to come to their hotel rooms. There are a lot of older men looking for attention from very young women. Some of these older men are a bit sheepish about their age and yearnings for nubile young lasses. Corporate types are seeking a young woman to come to their office for a quick blowjob because they are very busy and important but they also have needs. Dominant men are looking for “daddy’s little girl,” or “a submissive slut” or a woman with a “submissive streak” or a “slave.” There are men who want to be pegged or who would be happy to serve as a woman’s footstool. There are exhibitionists and voyeurs. There are self-proclaimed virgins looking for some invaluable instruction and men who are inordinately self-deprecating as if through abasement they might finally win a woman’s attention. White men take to Craigslist looking for black women or “ebony females” or Asian women or Indian women or Latinas because they want to try something different.
Married men, though they rarely admit they are married, are looking for a hasty encounter in a car or you have to “host.” Some married men are totally open about their situations, generally with sad stories about how they are bored or neglected by their wives or their wives are totally fine with them seeking a little strange or their wives want to watch or their wives want to join in. Then there are the men who have recently divorced or broken up with their girlfriends and they want a revenge fuck or they want a woman to be a balm.
There is a lot of demand for women who are 18 to 22, but there is also brisk demand for older women, mature women. A good number of men are interested in BBWs or big, beautiful women though many are clear to add, not too big. A number of the ads include pictures of, well, you can imagine—it’s the Internet, so anything goes. A surprising number of the ads discuss, at length, how these men love to go down on women, how you don’t even need to touch them if you will just give them a taste. These men give the impression that what men really want, is to satisfy women orally and receive nothing in return and only on Craigslist can this truth be known.
A unique vernacular flourishes in these ads—there is assistance or roses or gifts, offered by the men willing to spend money to get the attention they seek and 420 friendly for those who partake of herbal recreation and are willing to share and snow bunnies or skiing if you want to enjoy some cocaine, at least that’s what I’m guessing they mean by that. Men with BBCs abound. Either you know or you don’t. A majority of the ads are seeking a FWB arrangement—friends with benefits—once desires have been satisfied, the relationship will come to an end which is more like a benefits arrangement if you think about it. The guys who are a bit more careful refer to these arrangements as NSA, or no strings attached, which is far more accurate. Travel is a big concern, particularly in sprawling cities so the men will indicate which regions of a city they are willing to visit to find what they want. In many of the ads, there is a plaintive line or two about how these men know no one is reading their ad, no human at any rate and still, they make these offerings.
The instructions for getting in touch with these men are rather specific—share your favorite color so I know you are human, address me as Sir, tell me why you deserve my attention, remind me why I hate myself, tell me what the weather is doing today. There is also a hyper specificity to so much of what these men desire—puffy nipples, saggy breasts, hairy vaginas, bare vaginas, a woman who will make fun of a tiny cock, ANR enthusiast seeking a pregnant woman who is lactating and willing to share her bounty, a woman who will come over and receive a disciplinary spanking and then leave.
Only, within the anonymity of Craigslist, the white background crossed with blue letters, can these men share what they really want, what they need. So many of these men seem resigned to never finding that which might fulfill their desires and still they persist, still they hope. It kind of breaks my heart.
Roxane Gay is the editor of The Butter.