Monthly Archives: April 2011

WTF Is Hypergamy, Really?

Across the manosphere, hypergamy is an oft-discussed meme. Based on my informal mental count, it’s second only to feminism as a catch-all explanation for dysfunctional female behavior. “Hypergamy unleashed” is a typical response to stories of the college hookup scene, harems, endless serial monogamy, the 80:20 sexual pyramid, apocryphal “rainbow parties” and other sexual dynamics driven by the use and misuse of women’s status as sexual gatekeepers.

While I agree the concept is an important one, I fear we’re getting away from a bounded definition, and thus hurting our ability to use it to describe and discuss the SMP. Hopefully this post will spark some discussion.

I see “hypergamy” used to reference three typical situations:

  1. The desire of women for a partner of higher social status than her and the alleged inability of most women to feel attraction to a mate she perceives as lower or equal in social status. (To this point, the role of media culture in teaching women to find most men unworthy and unattractive is a huge problem.)
  2. The instinctual desire for a woman to mate with the highest-status man she possibly can. (In my mind, this is no different from a man’s desire to mate with the hottest woman he can seduce.)
  3. The alleged tendency of women to “trade up” in the SMP, in violation of social mores if need be (this would include dumping your beta date when the quarterback asks you to prom, and more nasty things like frivolous divorce, cuckolding and paternity fraud). Dalrock has made such “choice addiction,” and fantasies thereof, a regular discussion item at his blog.

Female hypergamy is often paralleled to the male desire for sexual variety. What’s interesting about that parallel is that doesn’t tell you what women actually find attractive, it simply relays the female Body Agenda and unconscious mating strategy. That men find long hair and hips attractive is a non sequitur to the fact that the male hindbrain is optimized to find many women attractive so as to motivate him to be sexually ready to “spread the seed” when the opportunity presents itself. Likewise, the hypergamy strategy doesn’t tell you how a woman’s brain evaluates status, it simply says that given the choice, she should choose the higher-status male, and choose him exclusively.

Another way of saying this in a way a systems designer might put it: there’s two independent pieces of hardware – one evaluates attraction, and one decides who to mate with. The male decision algorithm will decide on multiple women at the same time if possible; the female algorithm will seek the most attractive man, to the exclusion of other suitors.

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Filed under original research

More Wisdom On Getting Into The Game

detieennui32, already referenced once here, left an absolute knockout comment at Private Man’s post Mom Was Wrong – A Personal Narrative (my comments in italics).

No one’s going to see this comment, but: Thanks for this, PrivateMan. I can really relate. I grew up in a house with an overbearing mom and a doormat dad. Mom wore the pants, administered the discipline and kicked the ass. Dad hated his job, was already beaten down by life at age 34, and just did his best to get through life rather than live it. All I heard was “be nice, be yourself, and keep it in your pants.”

[I find it interesting how a significant crop of modern mothers exalt in encouraging sluttitude in their daughters, while simultaneously teaching their boys to be toothless betas.]

I worked hard to ask girls for dates. If it didn’t work in my small town, I looked at the next town over. I asked. I approached, but always timidly, tentatively and afraid. Good for a few pity dates and feels, but that’s about it. If a girl didn’t want me, I went omega and chased, begged, and pleaded with her to take me back. That was high school. In college: if I broke up, I’d have second thoughts. I was losing my hair [link] and thought girls would not like me. So with one, I chased her until she got sick of me, and finally cut me off for good. I thought no one would ever love me ever again. [Oneitis is truly an emotionally debilitating disease.]

What I should have been taught was:

1. Approach and ask. If they want to get to know you, look for IOIs like touching, talking, smiling, laughing, and her going out of her way to see you.

[No IOIs within five minutes = eject. Less than three within 20-30 minutes = eject. Plant fields that can yield a harvest.]

2. If she’s not interested, walk away and do your best not to care at all.

[Departing with aplomb is an alpha move, shows confidence in your ability to get another girl. If it's a pyrotechnic rejection, all the more reason to "be the bigger man" (I got an email that said that once, but it turned out to be spam).]

3. Don’t pedestal. Don’t chase so hard. Don’t call the next day. Don’t give so many gifts. Don’t drop tons of cash on her. A girl who expects these things is unworthy. Don’t walk away. Run away as fast as you can..

[Wanting to have nice things is one thing...demanding tribute because she has a vagina is another entirely.]

4. Understand the rationalization hamster. When if comes to relationships and dating, girls are incapable of rational thought and decisionmaking.

5. A girl has no idea why she’s attracted or not attracted to you.

[4/5: women can be rational, but once the hormones start flowing don't expect her big head to do the deciding. But nature and society both insist on concealment as a female mating strategy, so get used to words that don't mean what they appear to.]

6. You will get rejected. A lot. That’s how it is. It will not kill you. [Rejection's not fun, but it will be manageable if you avoid one-itis or going after bad bets.]

7. Worthy girl: relatively chaste, demure, feminine, and pleasant.

8. Unworthy girl: sarcastic, caustic, unpleasant, entitled, demanding, career first, rationalizes everything.

[7/8: Gotta qualify your mate. Career or no, don't be satisfied with a woman who doesn't make your life better when you two are together. The "instant spark" mantra is silly, but there needs to be a natural vibe of enjoyment between you two.]

9. Never take dating or relationship advice from a woman. Always seek advice from a man.

[And a man with a track record of success. Sounds sexist but guys really need to heed this. Nine times out of ten, you'll get either projection (how would I act to a guy in that situation?) or hamsterwheeling from a woman. Or she'll tell you what you want to hear because she wants to get wrapped up in a third-party romantic drama. It's really a collective extension of #5.]


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Opportunity Cost in Dating

Chris Dixon’s Climbing the Wrong Hill (2009):

I know a brilliant young kid who graduated from college a year ago and now works at a large investment bank.  He has decided he hates Wall Street and wants to work at a tech startup (good!).  He recently gave notice to his bosses, who responded by putting on a dog and pony show to convince him to stay.  If he stays at the bank, the bosses tell him, he’ll get a raise and greater responsibility.  Joining the technology industry, he’d be starting from scratch. He is now thinking that he’ll stay, despite his convincing declaration that he has no long term ambitions in finance.

Over the years, I’ve run into many prospective employees in similar situations. When I ask them a very obvious question: “What do you want to be doing in 10 years?”   The answer is invariably “working at or founding a tech startup” – yet most of them decide to remain on their present path and not join a startup. Then, a few years later, they finally quit their job, but only after having spent years in an industry they didn’t enjoy, and that didn’t really advance them toward their long term ambitions.

How can smart, ambitious people stay working in an area where they have no long term ambitions?  I think a good analogy for the mistake they are making can be found in computer science.

A classic problem in computer science is hill climbing.  Imagine you are dropped at a random spot on a hilly terrain, where you can only see a few feet in each direction (assume it’s foggy or something).  The goal is to get to the highest hill.

Local_maximum

Consider the simplest algorithm.  At any given moment, take a step in the direction that takes you higher.  The risk with this method is if you happen to start near the lower hill, you’ll end up at the top of that lower hill, not the top of the tallest hill.

A more sophisticated version of this algorithm adds some randomness into your walk.  You start out with lots of randomness and reduce the amount of randomness over time.  This gives you a better chance of meandering near the bigger hill before you start your focused, non-random climb.

Another and generally better algorithm has you repeatedly drop yourself in random parts of the terrain, do simple hill climbing, and then after many such attempts step back and decide which of the hills were highest.

Going back to the job candidate, he has the benefit of having a less foggy view of his terrain.   He knows (or at least believes) he wants to end up at the top of a different hill than he is presently climbing.  He can see that higher hill from where he stands.

But the lure of the current hill is strong.  There is a natural human tendency to make the next step an upward one.  He ends up falling for a common trap highlighted by behavioral economists:  people tend to systematically overvalue near term over long term rewards.  This effect seems to be even stronger in more ambitious people.  Their ambition seems to make it hard for them to forgo the nearby upward step.

People early in their career should learn from computer science:  meander some in your walk (especially early on), randomly drop yourself into new parts of the terrain, and when you find the highest hill, don’t waste any more time on the current hill no matter how much better the next step up might appear.

This story is a classic example of people overvaluing short-term inertia over short-term disruption, even if that disruption leads to long-term opportunity. Unsurprisingly, it also has application in the SMP.

Some people try to date someone they think they want, then move onto the other side of the same hill by dating the opposite personality to get what they didn’t get from the first person; other people try to get the same basic person again, just with this or that flaw fixed up or mitigated. Still others flop all over the place, trying different hills with little discernment to drive them. And others play for “security” – imagining what it must be like to live this or that lifestyle, but never detaching from their convenience-first partner or lack of partner to find out. (Interestingly, the financial term “beta” as volatility has the opposite meaning in red-pill nomenclature, where it refers to stability and comfort.)

Often it is not law or structure but ourselves that keeps us unfree.

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Filed under living a good life, primary sources, science+technology

Three Ways To Up Your Game

Although language is a quasi-rational capability (it gives us much of our ability to process ideas internally), facility with language is a critical vector for the lower-level social dominance system of our brains. Three ways a man can adjust his use of language to up his game:

1. RULE OF THREE

In text message or IM communication, one out of three of your responses should be laced with sarcasm, hyperbole, cocky funny, an inside joke, puns or other be not in earnest. This not only forces her to chase your constant reframing, it shows dominance in directing the conversation. With women of even moderate intelligence, wordplay is endlessly intriguing.

I once had to go into the office on a weekend. A colleague working from home was on the company IM network. (B = your favorite intrepid blogger)

B: “what’s up”

C: “working today?”

B: “yeah, hoping to get some things done before the Monday project starts.”

C: “Is anyone else there?”

B: “Actually the CEO and I just had an impromptu coffee.”

C: “omg really?”

[pause]

B: “Sike, there’s no one here but me.”

B: “…and my dignity.”

Be careful with the push-pull balance – too much and you come off as avoidant or unserious, not enough and you come across as stiff and inscrutable.

This doesn’t just apply to conversations with girls. Some of your best practice can come outside the aegis of anxiety that women can induce. I got a text from a buddy saying he was going to mail me something, what’s your address. I replied, “Your Mom’s House, [City, State].”

Roissy has written widely on text game, just google “roissy text game.” Athol Kay has as well.

2. ALWAYS HAVE QUIPS AT THE READY

Good conversational humor is not about having a few practiced really funny things to say; it’s about injecting your frame of humor into whatever situation presents itself. Thus your brain should be constantly sifting through quips to drop. You won’t use all of them, but they’ll be ready when needed.

You’ve had that situation where you come up with the perfect comeback ten minutes after it’s needed? If you work at it, you’ll start forming the comeback before the dig is even delivered. (#1 will help you build this skill because you have more time to think outside of face-to-face conversation.)

Quipping helps your game not just because people like to laugh, but because it sets you up to consistently change frame, which makes you interesting and presents an outcome-disinterested attitude (translation: you don’t really give a shit).

To paraphrase Mystery, if you say a funny thing, people will say “that’s funny.” If you say ten funny things, people will say “HE’S funny.” And they’ll want you around, because they feel better about themselves (and/or get turned on) when you are around.

If you ever engaged in locker room talk, this should be an easy transition. Here’s a good list of virtual non-sequiturs that can be deployed tactically at some point in almost any conversation:

“That’s what she said.”

“Hey if you like dudes, you know that’s none of my business.”

“I bet she enjoys it when you do that.”

“Do you want me to hold your purse next time you do that?” (after a display of unforgivable betatude)

“Aw, you’re just bullshitting, do you think I’m that dumb?”

A play on any word ending in -er: “Poker? But I just met her!”

Quips for conversations with women are on a case-by-case basis (carefully calibrated as to the level of sexual intensity), but reframing and light sarcasm are the rule of the day. Don’t make yourself too easy to talk to.

3. SHORT IS SWEET

“Never us a long word where a short one will do.” – George Orwell

One of the major failure modes of gameless young men is using too many goddamn words. Language is wonderful, and English is an unusually rich and expressive one. That doesn’t mean you need to voluminate and soliloquize your way through the night. (Plus the more you talk the less brainpower you have to observe body language, group patterns and IOIs).

Over-talking can reflect any one of low projected value, insecurity about being wrong, a need to flatter yourself, going try-hard to impress people, and extending the opportunity to reveal something a woman’s hamster will use to reject you.

When you write texts and emails, bring back the draft – type it up and let it sit for a bit before you send it. Do you really need that extra clause? Does that sentence sound like it’s one too many? Are you going crazy with silly adjectives? Do you have too many “I thinks”, “perhapses” and “maybes”, wishy washy words that betray a lack of confidence in your message? (Pursuant to #1, personal email should normally contain a quip somewhere.)

The caveat: when using few words, make those few words count by delivering with emphasis and confidence. As I’ve said before the words you say are secondary to the frame in which they are delivered. You will cultivate mystery and strength at the same time.

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Game On Main Street

Sometimes less is more when it comes to game, especially if you are playing for your own amusement (which you should be anyway, because that’s how you detach outcomes from your ego.)

Neo gets his books for free at the library. Stuff that in your kindle.

I went to the library over the weekend to get some reading done; I seem to spend all of my reading time on the Internet when I’m at home. Sitting in the upper atrium, I noticed a woman with a colorful sack walk past the seating area. A few minutes later, the colorful bag reappeared coming in the same direction. (Obviously she had circled around the building interior.)

I initiated eye contact and said “wait, you already came this way…am I in the matrix?”

“Oh! Haha, no I went around in a circle…sorry to confuse you!”

SANITY IS THE COURAGE TO LAUGH AT THE WORLD BEFORE IT LAUGHS AT ITSELF

As closing time neared, a library security woman trudged about alerting people to shut down their computers so as to get out on time. A schizophrenic vagrant who is a regulard started to pack up his scarf and notebook. The employee said to him “I’ll see you tomorrow, I’m sure.”

In perfect deadpan, the vagrant replied “I shut down MY computer.” (He obviously didn’t have one.) Miss Trunchbull laughed heartily.

CONVERSION

On the way home I was carrying Athol Kay’s book with the title exposed. A dude in the elevator says “married man sex life, huh? So what’s his secret?”

“Pretty simple – you gotta make yourself a high-value man. “

“Shit man, sounds great,” he said with the air of exhaustion you can always detect in the voices of exasperated husbands and boyfriends.

“You should check out his website, I think you might enjoy it.” I gave him the address, twice for good measure, and hoped one more man would come to the truth, for his own sake and for hers.

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Hott

(http://grammar.quickanddirtytips.com/)

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Alpha Photograph Of The Month

Source: pointemout.com

This photo is almost certainly staged, but that doesn’t make it any less powerful when you consider it’s a real-life couple. Crumpled over, Heidi Klum is so exhausted from a good ravishing she can’t be stirred.

No possessive cuddling here; the hand grip alone, along with Seal’s intense gaze at the camera, is enough to say: “Yeah. That lady in the bed? She’s mine. Bitch.”

The prominent wedding ring and cross, and his dark skin against the white motif, only help to accentuate his frame of authority.

Check out some other shots that display Seal’s excellent frame:

Clooney esque.

From gossipbees.com

Playing with the kids, large and in charge, wife is smiling – he’s like a black Athol Kay.

Last week we were discussing balding and game. Seal is bald and his face is disfigured from lupus. Does it look like it’s stopping him from succeeding in the SMP? This is all the more impressive when you consider that Seal probably makes less money than his wife, and his wife gets photographed in salacious poses for a living to be leered at by millions of men (and jealous women).

You might say, “that’s not a fair comparison, we may both be bald but Seal is a famous musician.” So pick up an instrument. Or a paintbrush. Or a writing pen. Or a spatula. Or a camera. Build cabinets or brew your own beer for all I care – find something creative you can take some pride in. Make it part of your frame of passionate dignity.

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Filed under beta guide, media

Put That One On The To-Do List

From a comment at Athol Kay’s Married Man Sex Life:

“Regarding getting drunk, I don’t drink BUT I have been meaning to take it up.”

Makes me think of this guy.

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Filed under this is just funny

Inner Game 101

detinennui32 left this absolutely on-the-money comment on Sunday’s post.

Hey Badger:

Good post. Let me add a few things to your already dead-on analysis.

1. This is absolutely crucial — do your thing. Devise your life plan. Find out your mission, your life purpose, and work towards it. This will cause your life to intersect with women – some worthy, some unworthy. When I was 18 and starting college I had decided on my career and was working toward it with singular purpose. A man with purpose and experiencing success in working towards it brings women into his orbit. Those women see a man who knows who he is, knows what he wants, and knows what to do to get it. Worthy women find that irresistible.

2. Do interesting things. Try something new. Go someplace you wouldn’t otherwise go. Try rappelling, scuba diving, or hitting balls at the batting cages. Take lessons in flying, tennis or piano. Join a group and participate in its functions. Find something you like to do. It doesn’t matter what it is, as long as it’s not video gaming. If you can afford it, go on a vacation alone and sight-see. Drive somewhere with a few other people for the hell of it. All these things help make you interesting and well rounded, and give you stories to tell. Don’t be afraid of failure- there’s a first time for everything. My college summer roommate bitched and moaned because he had no golf partner so I went with him once to shut him up. I didn’t hate it- and found a new sport I kind of liked. I’m not good at it, but it’s fun. I drove a date once 85 miles (one way) for great pizza. Loosen up. Live a little. For God’s sake, whatever you do, don’t sit at home reading, watching TV or renting movies alone. Get out there. Do something.

3. Go to public places where different people gather. Go to any downtown bar or night spot in any city with a population over 75,000. Go alone or with one or two other guys. Don’t approach any women at first. Enjoy your drinks but don’t get drunk. Don’t sit there and watch the TV. Watch the action. Watch what other men do. Chat up the bartender – especially the women bartenders. See who the newbies are, and identify the regulars. Watch what the women do. Note the center of the action, and the periphery. Take it all in. A well rounded man does not just watch or see. He observes. He assesses. He evaluates. He hears and notices not only what is said, but what is not said. He sees not only what is done, but what is not done. You’ll learn so much and get much more comfortable handling yourself and others when you get out where others congregate, and observe what’s done and not done. It will do wonders for your confidence.

4. Don’t take dating advice from your mother, unless she is June Cleaver. Your mother is not June Cleaver.

5. Discard the following advice, because all of it is false and probably came from your overbearing feminist mother:
a. Be a nice guy.
b. Never approach a woman who you find attractive. You should just let it happen naturally, or let her come to you.
c. Women want to be friends with a man first, then get romantic with him because they already know him.
d. You should show a woman your emotions right away.
e. Every woman deserves to be treated like a queen.
f. Women are looks-oriented, and they only like “hot” guys like male models, or the hot actor, or some other flavor-of-the-month.
g. Do lots of talking and show what a great conversationalist you are.
h. Never touch a woman you’ve just met and are getting to know, until she expressly gives you permission or she touches you first.
i. Never try to kiss a woman unless you have asked and she gives permission, or she kisses you first.
j. Tell a woman how you want marriage and how many kids you have.
k. You MUST call a woman the very next day after a date to thank her and set up another date.
l. You must do everything a woman asks you.
m. You must never try to put a woman in her place.

6. Here’s the truth:

a. Be a confident man. Be kind and courteous, but be direct. Don’t mince words. Don’t be deferential, apologetic or obsequious merely for pursuing what you want.

b. Women want to be approached. Even if you get shot down 19 times, there’ll be one out of the 20 who will be interested. Women time and again give props to the man who knows what he wants and goes after it. The risk is great but the reward for the successful, persistent man is immeasurable. If you let it happen, you’ll be waiting forever – and you might miss out. Besides, what have you got to lose? What’s the worst that can happen? She says no? She’s not interested? She laughs at you? So what? I’ve been shot down, laughed at, made a laughingstock, been thrown out of parties and bars, had drinks thrown in my face, even been puked on. It will not kill you. You’ll live to talk about it another day.

c. A woman getting romantic with her best boy-buddy only happens in TV movies on Disney and Lifetime. Chemistry, people. It’s either there or it’s not. Odds are you’re never going to mix it up with one of your girl-buddies from class or in your major. She’s most likely already LJBF’d (Let’s Just Be Friends) you. Every romantic interest I ever had started out hot, with immediate and palpable sexual attraction. You know when it’s there and when it’s note.

d. When she’s just met you and on the first few dates, a woman definitely does not want to see you emote. She’s surrounded by girlfriends and BFFs who do nothing but emote all damn day long. She does not care how you feel. She wants to see how you do on her tests. Jeez, if you start talking about all your deep feelings, you’ll creep her out.

e. This is called putting her on a pedestal. Don’t do it. Don’t compliment her. Don’t tell her how beautiful, attractive or talented she is. You’re with her. You think she’s attractive. She knows you think that or you wouldn’t be there with her, genius. Don’t treat her like a queen. Treat her like a woman you’d like to get to know. If you pedestalize her, she’ll lose interest because you’ve just failed a basic test — you did not stand up to her.

f. This is absolutely crucial. If you don’t get anything else from this comment, get this: Women do not see physical appearance first. What gets their engines going are a man’s confidence, his comfort level, and his bearing (his presence, personality, and charisma). They also smell fear a mile away. If you’re afraid or fear rejection, they’ll know it – and crush you. That’s why confidence and comfort are vital.

g. Big mistake. Shut yer trap. Don’t talk so much. It’s not 20 Questions. Don’t interview her. Talk with her. Let her do most of the talking. And don’t submit to 20 Questions either- that’s a test. You’re there to meet interesting people and have a little fun. Reframe it. Shut down the interrogation on both ends. And don’t lean in and invade her space because you can’t hear her. It creeps her out. Remember – you don’t know her well and she’s getting to know you. Use it as an excuse to move her to another place in the house, party or bar.

h. Women respond to light touching on the forearm or back (but nowhere else). Touch when conversing to make a point. It establishes a connection and tests attraction. If she pulls away, that’s fine. Ignore it and move on to something else. Touch when directing her to face you or to move to another place. It shows you’re leading and giving direction. If she pulls away, fine. Ignore it and don’t touch again. You might need to move on and pull back entirely.

i. Don’t discuss kissing or ask about it. If it’s been a good date, and you think she’s receptive, make a move. What have you got to lose? If she turns away, you’ve got your answer. It will happen a lot. That’s OK.

j. NO. This creeps young women out. Don’t talk about marriage and kids unless that’s part of your game with this woman or you’re really serious about it (and you should not be serious about it on the second or third date).

k. NO. Don’t call her the next day. This beta move smacks of desperation, lack of confidence, and overeagerness. She knows you just want to get in her pants, but could you be a little more patient and subtle? Let her mull over it, commiserate with her BFFs, and stew in the juices. Give her a couple of days to consider you. Then call, but only if you’re interested. Even then, don’t show too much interest. And for God’s sake don’t give her a gift or flowers. It was a first date. She hasn’t earned this, and it will creep her out.

l. No, you must not do everything a woman asks you. This is a test. If you succumb to this, she’ll know she can walk all over you and will lose respect for you so fast it’ll make your head spin. You need to tell her no sometimes. Maybe you don’t want to do what she wants. Maybe her course of action is downright stupid. Maybe she’s a spoiled princess and no one’s ever said no to her. She needs to be told no. She needs you to help prevent her emotions, her hamster or her entitlement monkey from taking over.

m. Sometimes women do need to be restrained. They are a bundle of unbridled emotion and enzymes, which many times they don’t understand. This wouldn’t be so bad if they did not often let those feelings and hormones control their decisionmaking processes and higher functions. But they do, and so restraint is sometimes in order. Sometimes they must be told in no uncertain terms to STFU and STFD.

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Just Be (A Better Version of) Yourself: An Addendum to Friday’s Pep Talk

“Just be yourself” (JBY) is one of the great clueless lies of modern dating consciousness, right up there with “girls want nice guys.”

The fact is that there’s a very small kernel of truth in it, once you get past the literal interpretation of the phrase. When a woman tells you to JBY, she’s not saying “the right girl will love you for who you are,” she’s saying “be secure and let everybody know it.” Women value and find attractive guys who give the air of congruence (“being themselves”) and security in their skin (confident inner game). In other words, men who don’t look like they’re trying. Just as men appreciate women who, even when they’re made up, don’t look like a synthetic different person.

DO THE BEST WITH WHAT YA GOT

You need to be who you are, but you have to do that the right way. Rather than implementing “game” by changing your whole personality around to a way you’re not built to act, it’s a lot simpler to make your traits positive elements in your game arsenal. This is the mistake guys make when they think they need to look like Men’s Health cover models and wear four-figure watches to land women (and girls make when they think they have to dress like slutty princesses and put on clown whore makeup).

On Friday (the day after Thursday) I advised a commenter who was deeply concerned about his baldness, telling him to shave it and forget about it. Here’s the key lesson for today: the same applies to almost any trait you believe holds you back in the sexual marketplace. You need to own those traits, minimizing or leveraging them to give off the congruence and confidence factors that underlie JBY.

If you are a tall guy who takes up a lot of space, you’ll probably have to carefully control your movements and reign yourself in or you won’t be able to build comfort, you’ll be socially threatening. If you’re a short guy, a portion of women will pre-eliminate you; big whoop, you don’t need that kind of attention. To get the rest of them, you’ll need to build a big personality to give off the presence your physical frame can’t provide. Danny DeVito comes to mind, and it’s not just a case of hiding his height the way they do with Tom Cruise – he played the titular character in “Get Shorty,” and a foil to Arnold Schwarzenegger in “Twins.”

If you are a chatterbox, use that to pull off Mystery’s “stacking threads” mode of conversation, where you carry a listener through multiple ideas and stories, some of which aren’t finished before the next one starts. You’ll be a source of constant entertainment and interest. (Observe bartenders at a real Irish or Italian bar for archetypal examples.)

If you are introverted and laconic, you’re practically born on second base, because many guys ruin their game by over-talking. However, your few words need to be effective – you can’t waste your breath with idle chatter, bad beta jokes and supplication. Make yourself an example of the saying that “still waters run deep” – you’re a quiet guy with deep thoughts, not a shy guy who’s afraid to speak. At the very least you win some automatic points as a mysterious personality, and you will subtly “qualify” women, who will respond by trying to “chase” more words out of you.

If you’re fat and you can’t fix it, you’ll just have to be Chris Christie.

Mystery has a flair for performance that motivated his early days as an amateur magician. His natural impulse is to play to crowds. He combined that with his logical mind to develop a way to win the hearts of women. Bars, clubs and other high-novelty social scenes made great locations for his gregarious, group-oriented methods. His height, soft vocal cadence and outlandish wardrobe are all exploited positively to his ends – as is his presence in entertainment-oriented cities like Miami and LA.

On the other hand, a guy like Roissy, or at least his online persona, is better suited to the brooding, analytical, vaguely misanthropic loner shtick he has parlayed into a spot as one of the most prominent personalities in post-Strauss game community. (The guy was cited by The Weekly Standard for crying out loud.) Building on his natural game, his youthful looks – you can find the photos online if you want – and quasi-emo clothing help him stand apart from overdressed DC lawyer-and-staffer crowd.

YOU’RE GOOD ENOUGH NOW, SO GET MOVING

Never, ever fall into the arrival fallacy – the idea that you’ll move forward on something important to your life (especially something as important as love) when you lose ten pounds, get buff, get a better job, pay off your credit card or whatever. If something is worth doing, you owe it to yourself to do it now (I would except marriage and children from this advice for the moment).

Sure, some projects need to be shelved because there’s not enough time in the day, but if you make a habit of avoiding long-term goals for short-term duties, you will always find something more proximal or urgent than those long-term items. Don’t bother even rationalizing it, you are really just playing to your natural human dopamine addiction that rewards you in the short term.

Besides, if you’re embarking on a protracted change in life, you can’t wait until it’s “done” to deploy – you need real-world feedback so you know how to adjust before you’ve built the wrong model.

LIFE ALWAYS SUCKS SOMEHOW

Closely related to the previous point, be cautious in believing that other people have it better than you. There’s a reason coveting is in two of the Ten Commandments. It could be argued this is a particularly destructive variant of Impostor Syndrome, and in any case it leads quickly to learned helplessness and acceptance of an unacceptable situation. Like a girl watching runway models on TV saying “if only I was pretty like them, I would be fabulous, guys would like me and I wouldn’t have any worries. But I’ll never be like them so what’s the point in trying.”  The person in your head saying “you could never get a girl like he has, he’s got so much more going for him” – fire that person.

Everyone has issues that cause them to envy someone else. Skinny girls wish they had boobs, busty girls wish they were thin. Short guys want to be tall, tall guys want to fit in an airplane or the backseat of Japanese cars. Field service reps wish they were in air-conditioned offices during the workweek, while desk jockeys wish they could drive a truck around town for a living.

In the excellent film What About Bob, the neurotic, multiphobic Bob (Bill Murray) has major man-crush-oneitis for his egotistical psychotherapist, whom he follows to New Hampshire from New York City. In talking to Dr. Marvin’s daughter Anna (her brother is named Sigmund), Bob thinks it must be great to be the child of a famous psychologist. Anna feels otherwise, and we see why in the same afternoon when her father humiliates her by forcing her to communicate with him through hand puppets.

Haters gonna hate, and there’s always going to be somebody to criticize you for something. The sooner you recognize this not as a confirmation of the “Darwinian failure” of whatever fault you have and instead as the normal shit-testing and locker-room talk of the social marketplace, the faster you’ll rise above it.

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