Field Report: Geek Game

“Looking for a lover who will come on in and cover me” – Bruce Springsteen

Some coworkers from my old job invited me out with them in our (uncomfortably preppy) neighborhood. I readily accepted as I had never been to the particular joint they were going and wanted to see if they could have any more luck with women than their recent history. (One guy was engaged, which I leveraged to introduce him to to Athol Kay’s material.)

Is this some smashing-success field report, with slam dunk routines in it? No. It does, however, illustrate the dozens of incremental social exchanges that make up an evening. In one sense, game is the art of recognizing those exchanges and capitalizing on them for your social benefit – a girl is free for a few seconds to be opened, a guy slips his game and can be AMOG’d, a woman flashes an IOI across the room. A lot of people go through a party or a pickup with no real concept of the small picture, looking at the big goal (number, close, exit strategy, etc) instead of threading a pastiche of small sequences together the way a musician gets from measure to measure.

NIGHTCLUB ONEITIS

The first thing I could tell was that one guy (let’s call him Eastern Boy as he hails from east of the Danube) was getting a oneitis case for a woman he hadn’t even talked to, a late 20′s woman known as Glasses Chick for obvious reasons. The three-second rule had been broken about a hundred times over; he ran a continuous outer monologue about her body language, position and availability – and never went to talk to her. All the while I exlpained various game principles by way of example – body language, set theory, competing frames. I quizzed the guys on the Indicators of Interest (IOIs) – fidgeting, touching herself, touching you, asking your name or other questions, comfort in your personal space, laughing at lame jokes, continuing the conversation or a tingling gina (difficult to detect in public). Gameless guys could do a lot worse than begin their quest by simply memorizing the IOIs and bailing if they don’t get them in the opening phase.

THE POWER OF ESCROW

Finally tiring of the oneitis, I loaded Eastern Boy with a Mystery gambit – “give me $20, and I’ll give it back to you when you talk to that woman, or any woman.” He declined, so I flipped the script, took out my Andy Jackson fake ID[link to $20 bill] and handed it over to him.

I went to the men’s room as a pretext to scout the environs. Read an email from Susan Walsh while at the sink; Susan’s a nice lady so it boosted my confidence. I came back out; having seen no better sets I planned to open Glasses Chick one on one but she was occupied by a strapping dude. (Eastern Boy had predictably stayed on the bench.)

SWAP MEET LOUIE

Instead I noticed two women (one married) I had seen ordering at the bar earlier, carrying matching Louis Vuitton purses. When I returned from the john, they were at the window table with their backs to our backs. I took my seat, then spun around.

“Excuse me, I noticed you both have Louie,” then with a sly teasing grin, “…is it real?”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2gZr6w82zAA

I had a backup story ready about buying fake accessories in NYC (got a great pair of $10 shades) but didn’t need it as they beamed with pride – “it IS real!!!” They told me about the single woman’s ex-fiancee who bought hers for her. They told me where they were from, a town near where I once had a summer internship (more rapport) and we fluffed about the local flavors and sports teams. They told me their girlfriends were coming to take them to another bar soon and how awesome that bar was. They were pleasant to talk to.

CASHING OUT

As I anticipated an awkward silence was imminent, I said I had better get back to my friends and held out my hand. “It was nice talking with you.” They gave me their names unprompted and asked mine, at least a vague IOI.

Eastern Boy gave me my $20 back and I tried to play it cool as a fistbump came my way. Mystery had a bit where he said that it’s important for a guy to be discreet on his way out of a successful set; it’s a DLV to show you felt lucky it had happened, not to mention activating her anti-slut defense with locker-room backslapping.

I recounted my opener – a ripoff of Mystery’s fake nails neg – and one of the guys reacted with derisive shock: “dude, you can’t call their stuff fake!” Another guy said he could call ten girls right then and they’d all tell him they wouldn’t talk to a guy who said that. This despite the fact I had just successfully opened a set with it. I told him you’d get one set of answers on the phone, and another set of answers if they actually got opened by a guy with a halfway decent frame (sadly, white-collar male America is full of well-dressed hard betas).

I explained the purpose of an opener, to get open-ended conversation moving. It also gives them an opportunity to either DHV themselves (I won’t try to explain the conspicuous consumption of designer labels but I know it’s important to the women who carry them) or humorously come clean about living on the cheap (sometimes it builds trust and rapport to admit you are faking it). On the other hand, if they wanted to be offended that I asked, I’d just close the set and go back to the guys – it’s happened before and will happen again, and I don’t really have time for people whose egos are so easily pierced that way.

Someone pointed out a pair in front of the bar, to which I explicated the three-minute rule: if you don’t anticipate being able to hold a set for three minutes, don’t enter. In this case they were waiting to order drinks, and as soon as the bartender was ready for them they’d turn away from any new guy talking to them. Mr “don’t-talk-about-fake-Louie” asked if you could buy the drinks for them to keep them focused on you. I facepalmed. I had to explain that trading resources for a single woman’s time, especially one you’ve barely talked to, is a major DLV. That’s not even Game 101, that’s what was in the reading you were supposed to do before the first lecture. (Did anybody do that pre-reading in college? I know I didn’t.)

It began to feel a little like Office Space, where the hapless protagonists look up money laundering in a dictionary.

THE MOTHER NEG

Two early-middle-aged women walked by our table and with a couple of hellos, we had them hooked into our conversational loop. (That made us 2 for 2 on the over-thirty crowd.)

One of the women had a distinctive stylish watch. I said honestly, “oh, my mom has that watch!” Don’t-talk-about-Louie nervously shushed me and told me not to mention my mother; I literally waved him off and told him I would explain later, which I did. Suffice it to say it’s a neg in the classic Mystery definition, a comment with neither positive nor negative value that simply shows you are not captivated by her frame. Just like the purse comment, it’s plausibly deniable as a totally innocent observation. I complimented her, but offset the DLV of the compliment with a brief mention of my mother (your mother is someone with whom no woman, whether she’s sleeping with you or not, wants to be compared.)

The women worked for a competing firm, which gave us rapport to fluff about the industry and joke about hiring each other (big firms are always poaching mid-level talent).

Eastern Boy began chatting up one of them. As he moved from across the table to right next to her and they got even closer as the bar packed tighter, her friend insisted she was “just being nice.” I concurred as I had yet to see any positive IOIs.

I noticed a new pair of girls at the adjacent table munching pizza. Slim and pretty but very young and somehow empty looking, I was not expecting much. What better time to practice? As I leaned over to initiate, Engaged Lady warned me “oh no, don’t embarrass yourself!”

Gesturing to open space, I said “we’re having a good time over here, would you like to join us?”

The girls looked at each other with a nauseous glance. “Well we’re having a good time over here.” [Our tables are two feet apart.]

“You can take the pizza to this table…[I pointed at our companion] she’s having a good time with us!”

The girls dithered without really knowing what to say. After a couple of seconds I shrugged and said unreactively, “suit yourself.” They kept talking at me (maybe they had thought of a delayed-reaction comeback), but by mid-sentence I had turned back around and rejoined the original conversation. No malice, not defensive, not with a Parthian shot, I just turned around and went back to what I was doing. Apparently I had not embarrassed myself after all, as Engaged Lady changed her story to compliment my frame: “I really admire your confidence.” I played it off as just part of my deal.

CLOSE THE DEAL

Eastern Boy and Marketing Babe continued to get closer with escalating kino including her hand on his shoulder and his hand on her waist. Engaged Lady reiterated the same story: “oh, she’s just being nice.”

I responded with incredulity: “For 45 minutes?!? I couldn’t be nice to those girls behind us for more than five seconds!” No sooner had I said that than I looked over at them and noticed them kissing – on the lips, with their eyes closed. If she was just being nice, it would be the nicest being nice I’ve ever seen.

I don’t know how drunk they were if at all, but sober or not they were definitely in the lovers’ intoxication. Hi-Yo dopamine.

ENDGAME

Baby steps. Is this some virtuoso pickup example? Not at all. But I got to catch up with some pals, met a few interesting folks and a guy did have a taste of the real success that had been eluding him for a long time. I also “picked up” the guy next to me in a totally non-sexual way – he was a freelancer in a field of interest so I got his contact info for professional purposes and to cement a new friend. Interesting how the guys most critical of (very mild) game were the ones who talked to zero single women all night. The positive for me is that I was completely non-outcome-focused. I was there to enjoy spending time with some friends, not !close some liquored-up tart blowing off steam from her corporate workweek. One of the guys and I tapped out at the location bounce and went back to our places; I got home early enough to type this report and prepare for another social event tomorrow morning.

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31 Comments

Filed under beta guide, dating and field game

31 responses to “Field Report: Geek Game

  1. TGP

    “Non-outcome focused.”

    The key.

  2. Mooooaar!

    I love reading field reports.

    Wether the outcomes are good, bad or indifferent the little details are always fascinating.

  3. dannyfrom504

    you my good man, are a saint. great story.

    was at dillard’s buying a pendant for my nieces bday. girl helping me, latin, late 20′s, 6.5-7, was asking me about the purchase b/c i wanted to swap the chain for another one. she says i’m not supposed to but since it’s for my niece, maybe. she asks for a pic of her, i show her, and she gushed how they look “latin”. “yeah.” i say, “mexican”. i finally let her know that i’m part mexican and we converse in spanish for a second. then…..she’s asks if i’m married or have any kids and she’s getting giggly. i tell her no, and said, “i’m NEVER getting married corazon.” and smile. she asks why and i tell her it’s b/c “there are just too many women out there and most of them aren’t weren’t marrying.” i laughed lightly as i said it. she tells me that thats too bad and that i’d make a great husband/father. “yeah, i know. but i’m sorry, i really have to go.”

    now….i REALLY had to run. as i’m walking out she says, “you should come back and see me after you get it engraved.” i don’t even look at her as i walk out and say “maybe, we’ll see.”

    i go back a few hours later and i stop in to show her. when she sees me, she BEAMS. lol. she recalls my name, but i had forgotten hers. so i show her the finished pendant. and i escalate and tell her to give me her number and we can meet up after she gets off. she grabs a pen and paper then hesitates. i knew right away she was dating someone. she admits to being involved with someone, and that she felt bad for him b/c his father was stabbed.

    ok. time to bail danny-boy this chicks fucking insane.

    she tell me to give her her number and i tell her that i wasn’t going to give it. she asks why and i tell her if she’s gonna pity date some dude, why the hell would she ask some random guy she just met for his #. then i let her know that i wasn’t going to be calling for coffee and convo, but for “cohiendo y chupas” (fucking and sucking). she laughed VERY loudly. told her good luck with dude and left.

    i bring this dreck up after reading some of Riv’s posts and my telling him to quit making pussy a priority and that a man doing his thing naturally attracts women. such was the case here. once i figured out her drama, she was DQ’d. lol.

    hope you’re doing well brother.

    [Danny's back! Wow, great story, and bizarre. I am not quite a saint but I hope I helped someone have a good time. One thing guys sometimes struggle with is that a woman will slightly hesitate to give a number/line up a date, indicating she's just being affable or trying to get you to go away (or just enjoying the attention of the pickup with no intention of following up), and guys need to be able to read the body language/nuance of the action and not just the action itself. Going back to high school, like if a girl agrees to go to prom with you, that doesn't mean she's excited about it. I don't really fault women for this, they don't want to make a scene rejecting a guy when they could give a fake number or just not plan on following through. But it means guys have to have really strong passive game to be able to read the reality of the situation.]

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  5. dannyfrom504

    lol. sorry. been on vacation back home in NO. had to swing down to texas where i found out i have 4 nieces. 2 of whom are 16 and 15. *sigh* and both are drop dead beautiful *double sigh*, the 15 year old is….uh, lets just say she should be reading susan’s blog. i’ve had to step into the role of surrogate father for them so that’s been keeping me pretty occupied as well. good news is, the 15 year old REALLY is receptive to me and seems to listen, she just really wanted some “fatherly” direction.

    other than that, been doing a lot of family stuff here in NO, visiting friends and having a good time.

    hope all’s well on your end brother. stay up.

  6. A great field report!

    Keep ‘em coming.

  7. Mike C

    I recounted my opener – a ripoff of Mystery’s fake nails neg – and one of the guys reacted with derisive shock: “dude, you can’t call their stuff fake!” Another guy said he could call ten girls right then and they’d all tell him they wouldn’t talk to a guy who said that. This despite the fact I had just successfully opened a set with it.
    .
    Its so funny how you can perfectly demonstrate something to some guys and they just refuse to believe and default to how they’ve been programmed to believe.

  8. Stephenie Rowling

    You are actually a great guy by teaching the principles in this matter, very good of you :)

    I actually have a question.
    I’m not too much to look at and all of you know I’m happily married but I have a couple of guys asking me out in this country and I have no idea when to say “I’m married”.
    In my country to polite thing to do is to smile, answer normal questions What is your name and all that and wait till he asks for further contact (Phone, Address Email…) and then smile and say “Sorry, I’m married” but I don’t know if they are cursing me under their breath for not stopping then before they used their lines as to them try with someone else or is okay for me to do what I usually do. I also try to play with my humongous wedding ring as to signal them, but few of them pick it up, so what is the best approach?
    To allow them to do their number or to stop them abruptly as soon as I can?

  9. Its so funny how you can perfectly demonstrate something to some guys and they just refuse to believe and default to how they’ve been programmed to believe.”

    It’s not like this stuff was even complicated, I could have written every principle I used that night on the palm of my hand. Maybe I’ve got “former smoker syndrome” when it comes to the SMP (the impatience with others who share your habit once you’ve kicked it) but I’m really losing patience with guys who complain about women or want to do better with women, but can’t even consider the simplest PUA bits because it so viscerally offends their conditioned neo-Victorian proprieties.

    It’s your happiness on the line, guys. Game or GTFO.

  10. Mike C

    but can’t even consider the simplest PUA bits because it so viscerally offends their conditioned neo-Victorian proprieties.
    .
    What I wonder is what specifically in a guy’s psyche triggers that visceral reaction. I know for me discovering “Game principles” was like a shining light from the sky beamed into my brain that suddenly made everything make sense.

    Things I had observed and couldn’t make sense of suddenly made perfect sense. And I literally thought back over a decade of interaction with women and it all made perfect sense…both some inadvertent successes (where I deployed Game tactics purely by accident) and many failures.

  11. Stephenie,

    “I’m not too much to look at”

    Come on, drop the modesty – I watch Mad Men.

    That’s a great question, and a very difficult one. Any escalation is a good opportunity to dial it down – if a guy tries to buy you a drink, move your position around the establishment, touch you, you should put the kibosh on immediately. If he gets upset or butthurt, that’s his problem – don’t apologize any more, your job is to be polite but honest and not to shelter his emotions, or to “be nice” by letting him get overinvested in a hopeless set.

    This is my cultural custom talking, but if you’ve gotten to the point a guy is asking for your contact info, you should have rejected him a while ago.

    That may not itself stop the pursuit though. Unfortunately other women have made this difficult for you by using I Have A Husband as a bluff or a fitness test. So a smart man must assume any number of possibilities:
    -You are lying ouright.
    -You are married but you are still listening to the suitor’s offer.

    The key at this phase is that if you say you are married but keep talking to him, he’ll sense that your words don’t really have meaning. You have to not reward his attention, and you do that by leaving the scene. If after IHAH he doesn’t immediately adopt a more placid, non-sexual tone with you (you’re a writer, you should have an idea what that’s like), go get a girlfriend, go to the bathroom, or just starting chatting up the person next to you to turn the “set” into a group.

  12. “What I wonder is what specifically in a guy’s psyche triggers that visceral reaction.”

    I think it’s as simple as Freudian mommy issues. Today’s men have been raised to be polite, deferential, supplicating – under the cloudy threat that otherwise mom, sis, your girlfriend and other women will get mad at you. That triggers deep shame and anxiety in a person’s mind (especially a man’s), the fear of alienation from the woman who birthed and fed you.

    I’m starting to feel like Yohami here; I should have midnight bacon more often.

  13. Stephenie Rowling

    Heh thanks for the Christina Hendricks comparison, but you should stop of the kids here will think is truth.

    I don’t visit bars so this usually happens on safe places like the bus stop, or the grocery store which is the only places I go unaccompanied so is mostly 5 or 10 minutes talk, that I know very well where is going.

    I would never go to a bar without company, unless is an emergency. My husband uses to joke that I should spit on the ground or pick my nose to make them go away, he says it would be at least a funny way to let them down, but given that when I’m riding the bus I usually go to places that I might get a job I’m terrified someone will remember the gross girl and will not give me an interview so that is out of the question for now.

    I will try to remember that being polite is not my job here, but it will take me a while I was raised to be polite unless a very rude thing happens and you are right cheaters might be the reason why my freaking ring is not working. I was under the impression that a wedding ring worked like “The One Ring” making me invisible to any other interested men…go figures :( ;)

    Thanks for the advice. :)

  14. Fun story, and LOL on these guys!

    [Isn't it wild? I'm no PUA expert but some guys just can't be told.]

  15. “I don’t visit bars so this usually happens on safe places like the bus stop, or the grocery store which is the only places I go unaccompanied”

    Oh ok, I thought you were talking about ritzy social events or something.

    “I was raised to be polite unless a very rude thing happens”

    This is the right approach in my mind – be civil until someone crosses a line and then frankness becomes paramount ahead of politeness. A guy hitting on you when he should know better is one of those lines. Then again, as you go through life you may acquire a few “orbiters” where the hitting on is actually a comic-relief game they play with you. A distant relative used to hit on all the time by her indolent landscaper. We just laughed about it.

  16. Stephenie Rowling

    “Then again, as you go through life you may acquire a few “orbiters” where the hitting on is actually a comic-relief game they play with you.”

    I used to play this with my girlfriends and my gay male friends, till one of them kind of let me know that he wouldn’t be oppose to try me on bed…EWWWWWW never again.
    Had I mentioned that men can be really weird sometimes?

    But don’t worry I’m not that paranoid if a guy is hitting on me as a joke I probably can tell.

  17. “I used to play this with my girlfriends and my gay male friends, till one of them kind of let me know that he wouldn’t be oppose to try me on bed…EWWWWWW never again.”

    Yeah, it’s fun when it’s a joke, but once any real earnest sexual desire pops up (especially involving turning a gay guy), it’s time for that sh** to stop.

  18. I am always astounded by guys who refuse to even acknowledge the basics of Game, let alone learn them.

    But that’s not a bad thing because it allows the rest of us to adroitly chat up women.

    It’s the complainers who annoy me the most. They bitch and moan (like women) about the situation yet when offered a strategy for overcoming the situation, they utterly refuse to accept that reality.

    Women complain, men act.

  19. Stephenie Rowling

    Heh I can’t flatter myself thinking I turned him, the guy is kind of a collector and pretty much evaluates everyone on sexual terms, I was about the only “prude” woman he knew so he was probably wondering how one of my kind does it, it was more curiosity than anything else, but I cut that s*it, right there it was not a pleasant discovery.

  20. Ah, I don’t know how I missed this post until now! I love it, keep ‘em coming Badger. These field reports are gold – they draw the reader in, we want to see you succeed. It is just so awesome that you are back on the market! IIRC, you haven’t spent much time using Game out in the field – this is a great way to test your skills and share them with others, as Stephenie said.

    Oh yeah, disregard Stephenie’s claim that she is nothing much to look at. I’ve seen her wedding photo, and she’s extremely attractive. Beautiful smile, honey skin, shiny curly hair, sparkly eyes, slim figure. Her husband is a lucky man.

    Badger, your reading an email from me in the men’s room is about the nicest thing anyone has ever said about me. Thank you for having that confidence in me. I think you are an extraordinary young man, and I’m looking forward to hearing more of your adventures!

  21. Stephenie Rowling

    Ohh Susan is so cute, :) Thanks for the kind words. I will have to agree with the skin color though, Is interesting to have for free what many women have to pay good money for in Hollywood;)

  22. Brendan

    The key at this phase is that if you say you are married but keep talking to him, he’ll sense that your words don’t really have meaning.

    Yeah. He could be thinking that she might be “married but looking” given the context (chatting to other men in a bar) and the fact that instead of shutting the guy down, she’s still chatting after saying he is married. He might also think she might be something like a “hotwife”, or even a woman on a business trip looking for some “strange”. I’ve been on business trips and have had married women basically flirt to the level where they are essentially making it obvious that overtures would be received well, but I don’t cross that moral line. You’d be surprised what some married people (men and women alike) get up to on business trips.

  23. Stephenie Rowling

    “You’d be surprised what some married people (men and women alike) get up to on business trips.”

    Oh trust me I know. The thing this is not on bars, but I will try to shut down because I do remember the last time the kid (he couldn’t be more than 20) kept talking to me after I told him I was married, but then I have a hard time cutting up a conversation, that is so rude. I know, I know, I’m not longer in my country I need to stop answering, I will do that next time.

  24. Brendan

    I have a hard time cutting up a conversation, that is so rude.

    It can be rude, I agree, but some guys are quite persistent and only get the message if it’s delivered definitively. It’s really only an issue if it’s getting flirty and crossing the line, and not just friendly conversation, as well.

  25. You’d be surprised what some married people (men and women alike) get up to on business trips.

    Up in the Air! I recall being absolutely shocked when I learned what the woman was up to.

  26. “You’d be surprised what some married people (men and women alike) get up to on business trips.”

    I stopped being surprised a long time ago. Read enough MGTOW sites of guys whose wives screwed around on them, and enough game websites of the guys sleeping with these women.

    Does anybody remember the Newsweek cover story about “female infidelity” a few years back? Tons of anecdotes in there about high-flying businesswomen getting it on during work trips and conference outings. The whole thing had a very congratulatory sex-poz air to it, openly praising women for doing “what men has always done.” Bullshit. Come to think of it, I think seeing that article was one of the early red-pill turning points for me – I started seeing more stuff like that and decided I needed to figure out what was really going on.

    “Up in the Air! I recall being absolutely shocked when I learned what the woman was up to.”

    While the film was centered around one man’s pathos, there’s some very instructive stuff for men in there wrt the female characters. There was a priceless scene where the young woman lays out her checklist of everything her perfect man has to have – tall, likes dogs, drives a Jeep, makes more money than her, and etc – and to show how serious she is about not settling she has a one-night stand with a guy she meets at a rave.

  27. “These field reports are gold – they draw the reader in, we want to see you succeed. It is just so awesome that you are back on the market! IIRC, you haven’t spent much time using Game out in the field – this is a great way to test your skills and share them with others, as Stephenie said.”

    Thanks for the pumpup. I’m not going to lie, it is a jungle out there. I was 1 for 2 in sets that night. The important thing for guys to realize is that women (and men) dress up and go to social establishments in the hopes that an interesting, attractive person will start talking to them. Be that guy! Don’t be any number of the dozens of guys the girls see checking them out but never approaching. It’s not even really a “pickup” if they want you to come talk to them, all you have to do is not give her reasons to stop talking to you.

    “Badger, your reading an email from me in the men’s room is about the nicest thing anyone has ever said about me.”

    In that case I’m sorry you’ve had such a rough life.

  28. Brendan

    Does anybody remember the Newsweek cover story about “female infidelity” a few years back? Tons of anecdotes in there about high-flying businesswomen getting it on during work trips and conference outings. The whole thing had a very congratulatory sex-poz air to it, openly praising women for doing “what men has always done.” Bullshit.

    Yes I also remember that story and remember thinking “Yep, finally someone is writing about this, although the tone seems off to me” (in that it was kind of congratulatory, which would never be the way male infidelities on business trips would ever be described by any major media outlet in the United States.

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  31. Excellent report. But don’t write it off as a failure — sure, it was a failure. But our failures are far more instructive than our victories. By breaking down just where we go wrong, we are able to improve our Game and get back in there better prepared.

    I occasionally serve as Wing to a couple of my buds, myself. They aren’t complete idiots, but most are stuck in remedial Mystery about Game, and don’t really understand the underlying principles. I’m also starting to teach my 12 year old son the foundations of Game. He’s enjoying his first crush at school, and I’m trying to keep him from coming across creepy. By the time he hits high school, he should be deadly.

    I’m considering putting together a short “intro to Game” presentation that lays out the foundations. Thoughts?

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