One sugar daddy whose screen name is Sam has tried long-term
girlfriends, mistresses, prostitutes and a brief marriage. Now single,
the 39-year-old entrepreneur has found the arrangement that suits him
best: a monogamous business-associate-with-benefits deal in which he
pursues an entrepreneurial project with a young, beautiful, intelligent
woman. He provides financial backing, mentoring and networking; she
provides sex, fun and, inevitably, a bit of worshiping, all of which
make him feel virile and influential. In between vacations using his
private jet, both work hard on the project. They don’t tend to see each
other much, as he travels frequently for his work.
I don't recall seeing that arrangement anywhere in Oliver Williamson's typology of the business firm. Should I have entitled this post "What people will spend on theatre"? Does this make it sound better?
Sam runs these relationships with an explicit business plan, a set
budget, measurable goals and quarterly reviews. From the outset, the
contract has an end date. It’s a brilliant, if contrived, way to
protect his pride. The contract specifies that the romance and sex are
to end by the preset date, so there’s no break up, no rejection, no
bruised ego. She’s not dumping him; the gig’s just over.
Here is the much longer story. Here is more:
He has an almost mathematical approach to assessing relationships, and
once even computed the costs for a girlfriend, mistress, prostitute and
wife – mistresses turn out to be most expensive by the hour; wives, by
the year; girlfriends are cheapest all around. But he’s not as
calculating as he seems. In fact, he concluded there’s little
correlation between cost and quality. Still, he is relentlessly
searching for an algorithm that will predict relationships’ success.