For $60, you can have a complete stranger spoon you all night.
What sounds like the title of an NSA Craigslist ad is actually a pretty good living for a woman called "Ali C" (not her real name). Her business was recently profiled by Gothamist, who dubs her New York City's first professional cuddler.
To Ali C, cuddling isn't associated with sex—it's a form of therapy. "Did you know that cuddling has been proven to lower blood pressure, lift serotonin levels, balance the nervous system and strengthen the immune system?" she writes on her website, CuddleUNYC.com.
Ali C lays out the ground rules first, allowing her clients to ask any questions, and making it crystal clear that sex is not part of the package. In addition, her clients sign a waiver. Also, she asks that they shower before their appointment time, brush their teeth and use mouthwash. Yeah, I would make people do that, too.
The standard cuddle package is $60 for 45 minutes, but more luxuriant indulgences are available. For $200, Ali C will treat clients to a Cuddle and a Movie, which are selected from a list of Films I Have On Hand. Each film on the list is designed specifically to keep romantic/sexual feelings on ice, except in the case of the Bourne Conspiracy, which is a video game, not a movie, and can therefore be anything. Somebody Up There Likes Me was a risky choice, as it's unclear whether Ali C charges extra for tear-staining her office/couch. There's also a $250 Holiday Cuddle, which includes "3 Hours of Cuddle time in front of a beautifully lit Christmas tree" and "Christmas Carols Playing" and/or "Holiday Movie."
"As far as I know, cuddling is legal," Ali C told the Daily News. "And if it weren't, that would be the crime."