I’ve joked about it countless times. Whenever I look at a bill too long I start to wonder, “If only I lost my self-respect and found a pole in its place.” Then I think to myself that stripping isn’t the way – hard work is. But isn’t doing a handstand in a G-string to collect enough singles to pay the rent hard work? One wrong move and you’ll get a concussion. The worst I can get from one misstep on my keyboard is carpal tunnel.

Times are hard, jobs are scarce and people want distractions – preferably those of a certain entertaining nature. Maybe that’s why so many people are no longer joking about the prospects of stripping; they’re going for it.

A strip club in Rhode Island recently held a job fair to fill positions for strippers, bartenders, DJs and waitresses.

In Chicago, a strip club is holding a “So You Think You Can Strip” competition where contestants compete over who can best channel their inner Diamond. The grand prize is $5,000. Runners-up win $2,500 for second place, $1,500 for third, and $1,000 for fourth.

If this competition were available to men, I’d almost be tempted to turn on some old New Orleans bounce music and give my mama a reason to cry at night.

Speaking of crying, I’m tempted to shed a few tears after learning how one bartender has gone from making a couple thousand in a “really good week” to earning nearly $2,000 a night stripping.

For the record, I would have no problem walking into a bank with that many singles.

Employers across the adult entertainment industry have said they’re seeing an influx of applications from women who are opting to flash for cash to keep their gas on. And apparently these are people with college degrees who used to work white-collar jobs until the economy dropped lower than a stripper making $2,000 a night.

As tempting as stripping sounds, there’s never a sure thing when it comes to “easy money.” You never know if the person paying for a lap dance at night works during the day in HR at a company you're trying to work for.

A recent report claims the economy improved slightly in February, but that shouldn’t last as this recession continues to linger on. Sure you didn't major in twerking in college, but you gotta eat, don’t you?

Has the recession made you entertain the thoughts of stripping?

I think it about more every day. I already have the perfect name: Visa.

Michael Arceneaux hails from Houston, lives in Harlem and praises Beyoncé’s name wherever he goes. Follow him on Twitter.

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