Hustling is the default mode of the 21st century, and I'm not above listing my adorable split-level Victorian on Airbnb during my out-of-town weekends. Need to rent a car for the day? Take mine—I wasn't using it anyway. But whoring out my bed—my own private sanctuary, complete with sweat-stained sheets and raggedy stuffed elephant named Elephant—on Recharge, the “Airbnb for naps”? I'd rather sell a kidney. The tech industry thinks that every last inch of my personal space should be for hire, that strangers should be able to rent it, on demand, by the hour, at their convenience. I call it, with eye roll heavily implied, the sublet economy. Initial moves toward the micropersonal seemed sane enough: Share the extra storage space in your garage (Spacer) or the empty parking spot in your driveway (Pavemint, CARMAnation) or that boat you spent way too much money on (Boatbound, Antlos). But now we can't look past our own noses without seeing dollar signs and feeling the guilt of unmonetized potential. Nothing is sacred, not even your laundry room (Laundromatch—now defunct, ha!). With all those student loans, can you really afford to leave your kitchen vacant instead of entrusting it to someone else's dinner party (Feastly)? You know that very relatable problem where you have a toilet that's just sitting there, not generating any revenue, most hours of the day? Put it on Airpnp, the “Airbnb of toilets”! When I volunteer to host my most intimate spaces, I sacrifice some of my basic human dignity. What's next, a service for renting out my fresh, youthful blood? What's mine is not yours. Unless you'd like to help me scrounge up the cash for a down payment on a house. Did I mention I had a kidney for sale?
This article appears in the May issue. Subscribe now.