Monthly Archives: March 2012

The 100-Approach Challenge

As last year wound down, I had been working a lot and trying to blog more regularly, which ate into some of my social time. There’s a social threshold below which a guy doesn’t really have any functional game at all because he’s not being social or active enough to:

I was done with retiring to my badger hole. Among other steps I took to kick-start my social life was to engage in the 100-Approach Challenge at the start of December. Inspired by this intrepid blogger at http://approach100.wordpress.com, I had until the stroke of the New Year to approach 100 women (approaching being the game verb for initiating conversation with a woman; the noun of “an approach” refers to a conversation with a woman).

Rules:

  1. I must do 100 approaches before the end of the year.
  2. I must do at least one approach per day.
  3. If a woman hears my opener, it counts as an approach (if she chooses not to respond it’s her loss, not mine)
  4. If a woman opens me, I must respond in earnest (i.e. actually escalate the conversation) to count it as an approach
  5. If a woman has been opened into me (e.g.via mutual friends) or is a clerk or someone otherwise obligated to talk to me, it doesn’t count as an approach until I unload some chick crack, kino or verbal escalation

Outcomes

Of my 100 approaches, probably 70 were “closeable” – single women of reasonable age and SMV who I might want to see again. The rest were flirty waitresses, clerks in airports I’d never see again, saleswomen at mall kiosks (got one of them to massage my hands for free), and a demure middle-aged Chinese wife I approached while she was carrying a bottle of Martinelli’s back to her table at a dive bar.

Of those 70 approaches, I got seven numbers and a business card, four of which I saw at least once more. 10% close rate, 50% Day-2 rate from closes. I know some guys do better than that, but that’s a reasonable starting rate of return for me in my first enterprise of day-gaming like it was my job.

I got almost nothing out of my first 50 approaches (the first twelve days or so). Nerves, flutter-voice, self-consciousness, and low-percentage targets meant that I got very few approaches to the point of a close at the start. But I was building skills, making mistakes and learning from them, and learning to be comfortable with the rush that comes with talking to an attractive woman. My night game approach anxiety has always been very low, but approaching in a coffee shop, bookstore or grocery store took a bit of work to get over.

In the last 50, I really started to hum. Part of it was as I got more confident in the ability to cold approach, I was choosier about who I approached. In other words, I lost the scarcity mentality that “I have to approach this woman because I’ll never meet another attractive girl.” I realized if I really didn’t feel like approaching or didn’t really fancy the woman in question, there’d be another woman to approach soon after. So the approaches I did do were done in a better mood. As long as you’re approaching on the regular, you can pass up some chances and not feel like a hopeless omega male.

80% of my sets were in the daytime or otherwise not at a self-styled “pickup” environment. I had good success in the grocery store, at a sports bar during a bowl game broadcast, at a museum, and on an airplane (where I ping-ponged between two women and closed them both on the way out of the jetway).

The accountability of the Challenge forced me to get out more – not in the sense of drinking and clubbing, but the sense of living a lifestyle that put me in contact with approachable people. It was “I need to stock up on toilet paper and get some Tylenol one of these days…if I stop by the store tonight, I can do that AND do a couple of approaches.” Or “How about I go out for an evening Manhattan tonight and see who I might meet?” So it helped reorient my life to a place where I was out in my neighborhood and meeting new people on the regular instead of going to work, coming home late, blogging a bit and collapsing – and I don’t care how good your inner game is, that’s not a lifestyle that’s going to bring a lot of women into your orbit.

I used variations of a small number of openers – primarily:

  • “You look like you’re having the most fun of anyone here.” (Best used at night, sarcastically, when a woman looks bored. Thank you, Roosh for this winner!)
  • The clothing neg (a valueless statement about her sartorial choices, like “that’s a very colorful scarf for the winter” or “your dress is very yellow.”)
  • Elderly openers: “Hey, is that a good [phone/laptop/book]?” or “hey do you know if this [food item] is any good?”
  • “Do you mind if I say hi to your dog?” [dog game is huge, a great way to indirectly approach a woman by showing social dominance and nurturing traits to the dog. A warning though, dogs can sniff out weakness almost as well as women can, so don't approach an active dog unless you're sure you can Caesar Milan it.]
  • “You look like you’re really enjoying yourself over there.” [if a woman is reading a book or looking at her phone and laughs]

On two occasions, I ran Roosh’s Day Bang script to the letter. The first time I got a number after opening a woman in the salad dressing aisle, asking her if the dressings were any good, having her pick out a bottle for me and passing a huge shit test when she asked why I was asking so many questions (my reply: “well, you just don’t meet that many interesting people in the salad dressing aisle.”) The second time I opened a girl by asking about which chocolate chips to buy, and she launched into an unprompted soliloquy about how she was going to make cookies for the doctors she worked with. When I closed her she said she had a boyfriend; at that point I had neither the time nor inclination to probe if it was a shit test, so I just wrote it off as a good approach that didn’t work out.

The goals of the challenge motivated me to get serious about closing when possible. But at the same time…

Approaching without feeling the need to close calmed my nerves considerably and led to better conversations (and thus a greater chance of a good close). I mentioned this in another post, but it bears repeating. This attitude requires you to abandon the scarcity mentality. I went with the Yohami mindset of “she seems like she’d be cool, let’s go over and find out.” But it also went both ways, there were times when I would approach a woman and be glad when the approach ended early, because I could count the approach-notch but not have to go through the full effort of a total approach.

Approaching becomes a habit. I stopped thinking about “I should approach so I can count it in the challenge” and just approached without rational motivation.

The challenge coincided with me upgrading my wardrobe, but one became the other – I became more conscious of dressing decently as it became a habit to meet new people at any time. I didn’t want “I’m not dressed well” to be a rationalization-hamster excuse to wimp out. Well-fitting clothes will boost your SMV and signal good woman-friendly attention to detail, especially if you’re in good shape.

The game slows down. One of the interesting phrases applied to quarterbacks in football is that “the game slows down” as they improve…they are no longer driven into a blinding adrenaline surge every time the rush comes at them, they begin to think as they act and even predict what’s going to happen before the ball is snapped.

The same happens as you get skilled at approaching. You no longer get caught up in the mere act of opening conversation with a woman. The opener becomes automatic, even if you’re ad libbing it. You gain an appreciation for the improv aspect of the art, that it’s fundamentally unscriptable and reactive to the moment. You start to think about the big picture, the mood she’s giving you, where to take the conversation (no more desperately seeking any line at all to blurt out of your mouth lest you risk her walking away), and how and when to close.

I needed every hour of the month. I was about five shy of 100 come December 31, and got my last approach in about ten minutes shy of New Year’s Day. Coincidentally, when I turned away from her, she smacked me on the ass.

Conclusions and Lessons Learned

I am the 1%. Maybe that’s an exaggeration, but most guys will not approach on the regular, or even just approach the women they’re interested in. I do (for the most part), not because I have some magical personal skill that makes me impervious to failure, but because I’ve made approaching a habit and so I’m not flummoxed when a really good opportunity presents herself.

Don’t forget about game. After all my huff and puff about just doing it, “just talking to her like a fucking human being” is not going to get the job done. You need to remember to tease, ramble, imply mystery, be cool, sidestep shit tests, escalate if given the chance, and close when you can. Don’t think you can just be a chatterbox and expect the ripest fruit to fall at your feet. Structured game helps – having a handful of openers, chick-crack questions and indirect DHVs at the ready is a great way to supplement spontaneous conversation so you can make sure you don’t get into an intellectual discussion with no sexual value and leave with her mentally stimulated but viscerally uninterested.

Sacrificial approaches are key. In a night-game environment, you can’t get hung up on the one girl you want to talk to. Open a few girls you’re not that interested in on first sight, and get your game warmed up. This keeps you from oneitis, and also helps get the girl you want excited about you, because…

Approaching boosts your social value. Unless you get a pyrotechnic rejection (I got zero during the challenge), women see you chatting with other women and find you more sociable and interesting, and also wonder “why isn’t he talking to ME?” A polite rejection from a pretty girl, taken in stride, can get you preselection points even though she’s technically de-selected you. Related…

My friends were blown away. They were amazed at my seemingly single-minded drive to chat up girls in public without looking like a creeper. Some of them became overt or accidental wingmen. It was surreal to tell them it wasn’t that difficult, you just have to do it.

Playful women are much more fun to approach. A woman who gets butthurt because you interrupted her silent shopping experience or took note of her scarf is not worth continuing an approach with. She’s either an alpha-chaser or just no fun. Learn to be selective on this point, let her have her cats or her carousel of alphas who never commit, and DON’T fall in to the obligation masculinity/rom-com myth that it’s the man’s job to “break down” the woman’s heart of stone. Don’t view women as problems to be solved and game as a tool to solve them; instead view your game as a way to have fun while discovering whether someone else is interesting and interested in you (along with game as a tool to escalate and close when the time is right).

People don’t owe it to be nice to strangers all the time, but the magnanimity of a woman is a good harbinger of her LTR fitness and nurturing attitude. It goes to an aphorism I like, “the measure of a woman’s character is how she treats a man who has nothing that she wants.” If she sneers because you dared ask her where the history section is in the bookstore, she’s probably not someone you want mothering your children in the future or representing your family name. (Ladies reading this, take note – being nice to children, animals and guys who don’t make you tingle lights up commitment boners from coast to coast. Guys want to know you’ll be good to them even when they’re not at their most attractive.)

Guys who don’t feel they have enough options should do the challenge. The girls are out there, you just have to go find them.

IOIs are different during the day. At night you can stick to the script of the typical PUA indicators of interest (hair/body touching, asking your name, leaning into you, letting you into her personal space, etc). In nightgame, you’re essentially tapping into and reading her hindbrain directly, an operation aided by the alcohol, semi-anonymity, and fantasy mindset of urban nightlife.

In daygaming (and sans alcohol), social conventions take over and you have a very small chance of kissing or even touching a woman without setting off red flags among her and the people around you. Instead, you have to read it through the lens of “people out during the day are trying to get things done,” and taking time and attention away from that to give to you is itself a sign of interest. So if she’s talking to you at all, if she’s even just listening to what you’re saying without walking away, that’s an IOI. At night, she may talk to you just because she’s bored or has to pass the time while her friend gets hit on by someone else.

Roosh’s Day Bang model has developed the idea of the personal question (from her to you) as a major IOI that indicates you have a good shot at getting her number. When she starts asking for elaboration or personal details, you’re hitting the peak of the conversational energy and should shift the conversation to close mode.

“Close well or close ugly, but CLOSE!” If the conversation is going even halfway well, close it at a high point and suggest another meeting. Some in the Roosh circle recommend you get a number at night only after an attempt to !close her has flagged out. By contrast, daygame leads seem more reliable in my experience, partly because they have to be – you just don’t go nearly as far, there’s nothing to regret the next day because she’s not making out with a random guy in the grocery store, you have a lot more mystery to play off of from a fifteen-minute casual conversation that makes her want to find out more.

But in daygame, she’s probably not going to give you forward, panties-on-fire signals that you should get her number and set up another meeting. You just have to make a leap of faith and do it. I’ve found the line “why don’t we continue this conversation later?” is good at calmly expressing your sentiment. (You don’t want to set off her beta detectors by being too formal about going on a “date.”)

The good news about daygame is that the sets are typically about fifteen minutes long, so if she turns you down you aren’t losing nearly as much opportunity cost as when you’ve gamed a girl for two hours at a bar outing, to the exclusion of other prospects, and she says “well I’m going to leave with my friends, it was nice talking to you” and bolts.

Just do it. Seriously, all this discussion about game tactics is pointless if you’re not putting it into practice. And it’s the “long pole in the tent,” so to speak, the thing that’s holding back their game, for a lot of the more introverted and/or workaholic guys out there.

Add “approach regularly” to your lifestyle. I don’t use targets, and I don’t go out with the expressed intent of meeting women and getting numbers. I go where women are while living my normal life, and take advantage of the opportunities to talk to approachable women. Understand that lots of approaches are practice, but they will prepare you for the approach that really goes somewhere – and keep in mind you might approach a lukewarm prospect only to learn in conversation that she’s fascinating, freaky and totally into you.


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Filed under beta guide, dating and field game, original research

Why Women Love Don Draper

WARNING: Season 5 content, which premiered Sunday, is not discussed in this post.

In my mind, it’s very simple. The Mad Men protagonist is a combination of two killer archetypes:

  • He’s a private, brooding, unknowable creative force (he even has a secret identity).
  • He also makes a boatload of money, commands the respect of his enterprise, wears really nice clothes and owns the room when he needs to (sexually, especially).

I’ve seen some writers describe Draper as an alpha. I don’t really buy it. The alpha of the Mad Men universe is Roger Sterling, a bold, unflappable, unapologetic dominator who enjoys poking people in the eye for sport. Don is more like a guy who just picks up trouble whether he’s looking for it or not. In many ways, he’s still the kid he was in flashbacks, reacting to the world instead of pushing it around, seeking booze and sex as escapes rather than main courses of his life.

It has been funny over the course of the show to watch Roger drag Don out of the office and try to figure him out, to no avail. It’s interesting how Roger never really gets on top of Don – Roger only knows how to apply pressure to motivate people, but Don and his creative underlings don’t work that way. They don’t work better when kicked harder. Roger at least understands that enough to keep his hands off of them (undoubtedly counseled in the topic by the dainty and phlegmatic Bert Cooper, the firm’s emotional brakepad).

Roger likes to win, which is why he’s at the top of the business. But his business doesn’t run without Don’s capricious genius (if I remember correctly, Roger didn’t build the business himself but was brought into it by his father), and so Roger has no choice but to tolerate it.

Another interesting facet of the show is how Don and Betty are both awful people in their adult lives, but Don is at least good to his kids (outside of the whole banging a bunch of other women thing), and actively resisted some of Betty’s attempts to bait him into enabling her histrionic parenting. I think it’s telling that many women I know admire Betty’s glamour, but do not admire her as a person. Given that a guy good with kids is a tingle-generator of the first order, I wonder how much the Drapers’ child-rearing habits influence those opinions.

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Great Game Material: Deep Rapport Questions to Create Emotional Connection

A while back I ran across a 2008 post entitled “Deep Rapport Questions” by one Sebastian Flyte, taking the nom de guerre Elysium.  I consider it one of the most important posts on game and social interactions I’ve ever read.

The blog has since been taken down, but the content has been preserved by the Internet wayback machine and also by crasch at this post. Elysium says:

>>>>>

I read Snoop: What Your Stuff Says About You by Sam Gosling. It was mildly interesting, and like many of these one-word intellectual books popping up (Yes!) had some little gems of curious research splatted here and there.

The most intriguing was a study* by Arthur Aron, a psychologist at the State University of New York, who wanted to see how long takes to feel a really deep romantic connection with someone. So he got in some guys and girls, and in the space of an hour tried to create intimacy levels that typically take months or years to form. It was called the ‘Sharing Game’ – a sheet of 36 questions was presented to the participants, and they had to ask and answer them with their assigned partner. Both had to answer the questions out loud, to each other, and in the manner of a conversation. Here are some of the questions:

  • Given the choice of anyone in the world, whom would you want as a dinner guest?
  • Before making a telephone call, do you ever rehearse what you are going to say? Why?
  • What would constitute the “perfect” day for you?
  • When did you last sing to yourself? To someone else?
  • If you were able to live to the age of 90 and retain either the mind or body of a 30-year-old for the last 60 years of your life, which would you want?
  • Do you have a secret hunch about how you will die?
  • If you could change anything about the way you were raised, what would it be?
  • If you could wake up tomorrow having gained any one quality or ability, what would it be?
  • Is there something that you’ve dreamed of doing for a long time? Why haven’t you done it?
  • What is your most treasured memory?
  • If you knew that in one year you would die suddenly, would you change anything about the way you are living now? Why?
  • What roles do love and affection play in your life?
  • Share an embarrassing moment from your life.
  • When did you last cry in front of another person? By yourself?
  • What, if anything, is too serious to be joked about?

There is a momentum here – if you admit you rehearse telephone calls, a minor but revealing thing, you will be more willing to answer the deeper questions. Interestingly, and proof that conventional ‘where are you from’ questions lead nowhere with women, was the control mechanism: a small talk questionnaire for other participants that included questions like “Tell me the names of your brothers and sisters, and where they were born”, and “Where are you from? Name all the places you’ve lived”.

The participants in the deep rapport experiment “didn’t want to part company afterwards; many were seen exchanging cell numbers to keep in contact”.

The participants in the small talk experiment just wanted to get the hell out of there.

These questions should be incorporated into the “truth game” comfort routine, where you say ‘Let’s play the truth game. We ask each other questions, one at a time, and have to tell the truth.” Simple. Simple. Simple.

<<<<<

Over the past few months I’ve been working hard on building emotional connection** with women, exuding warmth and closeness while avoiding the crying-shoulder friend zone that so many guys fall prey to. I had noticed that in my quest to avoid wishy-washy beta-orbiter status, I had suppressed some of my emotional spark. Although I was bold and alpha and creating attraction, it was falling flat on follow-up due to my backing away from riding the emotional wave.

The breakthrough for me was one of Roissy’s Commandments:

IX. Connect with her emotions

Set yourself apart from other men and connect with a woman’s emotional landscape. Her mind is an alien world that requires deft navigation to reach your rendevous. Frolic in the surf of emotions rather than the arid desert of logic. Be playful. Employ all your senses. Describe in lush detail scenarios to set her heart afire. Give your feelings freedom to roam. ROAM. Yes, that is a good word. You’re not on a linear path with her. You are ROAMING all over, taking her on an adventure. In this world, there is no need to finish thoughts or draw conclusions. There is only need to EXPERIENCE. You’re grabbing her hand and running with her down an infinite, labyrinthine alleyway with no end, laughing and letting your fingers glide on the cobblestone walls along the way.

This is the classic sensual wordsmithing that made Roissy the unparalleled king of the the scene – back when it was called the “Roissysphere,” a nod to the fact that it was his world and the rest of us were just blogging in it.

This idea of employing the senses and running aimlessly through a forest of feelings resonated with me. As anyone who reads my blog knows, I can move between topics and spheres of discussion with the best of them.

Searching for a way to heighten my emotional energy in conversation without smiling too much, laughing too much or getting too clingy, I dialed up Elysium’s post. I couldn’t keep more than two of the questions in my head at any one time, but that was enough – one was usually enough to kick-start a conversation in a personal but still safe direction. I wasn’t asking about her past relationships, family history or kink. But I was getting her sharing details about how she worked (or how she thought she worked), building comfort and an image of myself as a deep guy in her eyes.

I’ve actually rolled one of the questions into a standard conversational rejoinder, now a part of my personality rather than a game routine. That question is “before making a telephone call, do you ever rehearse what you are going to say?” Not only does this function as a rapport builder, it clues me in to a woman’s social demeanor and possibly her introvert/extrovert balance. In two cases it even got women to tell me outright that they worked in public relations and corporate sales respectively, material I used to take the conversation in yet another direction (and not a direction about work – one thing that does not build rapport is talking about your jobs. I actually advise you never say “so what do you do?” in conversation ever again.)

Line for line, this sector of your game is very low-cost to learn. You don’t have to worry about keeping a bold frame like when delivering cocky funny lines, you don’t have to worry about shit-test responses, and you’re very unlikely to get rejected based on these questions (a woman who can’t play along is one that isn’t worth talking to anyway).

You just say the line, listen to her response, and say “…that’s interesting.” Then either follow up on what she said (“what if it was a really important phone call, like a accepting a job offer or with a guy you really liked”) or, if she’s polite, she’ll ask you back the same question and you respond honestly but be one step less revealing than she was to maintain some aloofness.

These topics are winners – women love talking about psychology, especially their own inscrutable natures (let the hamster spin for fun), and so many guys flag out in conversation with the same “where are you from/what do you do/how long have you lived here” boilerplate. Don’t be that guy – be the interesting guy who taught her something about herself.

*The blog author gives the academic citation in a comment: “The procedure is described in the “Personality and Social Bulletin”, 23,33-377. The experiment itself was by Slatcher, R. B. (2007) “Party of Four: Creating closeness between couples”, University of Texas. He has a 2008 summary called “Effects of couple friendships on relationship closeness”.”

**Great minds think alike.

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Filed under beta guide, dating and field game, science+technology

Book Review: Roosh’s “30 Bangs”

Uncle Roosh was kind enough to hook me up with an advance copy of his latest ebook, “30 Bangs,” which is what it sounds like – a journal of 30 of his seductive experiences, written up as very short vignettes.

Up front: the book is very good, it’s definitely worth a few bucks and an hour of your reading time. I’m very good at learning from example by adapting it to my needs, so I found the book very educational. Good field reports are worth probably ten times that of an equal-length theoretical discussion.

It’s written in his trademark sparse and matter-of-fact style, an oeuvre enhanced by the disconnected, episodic nature of the stories.

Admittedly, it’s difficult to review the book without giving away too much of its magic (though you can guess the ending to each one) so I will focus on the big picture conclusions.

Among the notable points were the following:

1. The sheer volume of last-minute resistance of women who at the end of the night eagerly boffed the author boggled my mind. Getting around LMR is one of the hugely frustrating parts of dating, as it’s very difficult to tell if a given woman wants you to go around her token objections, if she’s stringing you along for beta-comfort with no intention, if she’s a tease who gets off (figuratively) on heating guys up and blue-balling them, or has simply lost interest in you just as you’re ramping up the escalation.

2. There’s an old piece of game wisdom that a woman who says something like “we’re not having sex” has sex on her mind and is trying to talk herself out of it. That certainly seemed to be the case in several of the stories, where a woman would tell Roosh “you can come up/sleep in my bed/take off your pants, but we’re not having sex” and not ten minutes later they’d be going at it like horny-assed rabbits.

3. There’s a thousand ways to skin a cat. Every story is different in its approach, isolation, and timespan. Guys who are consistently good at closing the deal have an improv streak in them that automatically adapts their game to various situations.

4. I’ve always taken it as a fundamental tenet to not sleep over until the notch had been scored, but on at least one occasion Roosh couldn’t go all the way, slept the night in the girl’s bed, and scored the next morning. I suppose if it’s at her place, there’s less danger of being beta-zoned or used as a cuddle buddy, and you’re not being played for the “sexless inkeeper” if you’re in her bed.

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Game In Four Lessons

(hat tip to Kane, who happened to post tonight on a similar riff)

Roosh had a brilliant post a while back where he boiled good game down to two lucid points:

1. Be interesting (self-explanatory)

2. Be cool (don’t chase away women with weird mannerisms or over-eagerness)

I’d like to add two more elements to the toolbox, things you do rather than traits you are.

3. Work your logistics

Logistics means a few things. It means arranging your life to be interesting (back to point 1), and living a lifestyle that brings you into contact with women who will want to be with you. (Being cool and interesting means nothing if nobody sees your gifts.) It means managing your time and resources so you can be in shape, well-groomed and tidy. For a hard-working single young adult, it’s surprisingly easy to lose track of all this stuff and wind up not meeting any women, or not being at your best when you do.

Logistics also means working the pickup or date properly – thinking a few steps ahead, dealing with cockblocks and distractions, knowing how to work a situation so you can get your gal isolated to a private location and escalate (this stuff is Pickup 101, and a fascinating, fun on-the-job challenge once you get the hang of it).

4. Work your seduction

Being cool and interesting is not going to score you many runs by themselves, and as many guys know, those clothes don’t take themselves off once you get her inside your place. Initiating the act, push-pulling the escalation, distinguishing last-minute resistance from genuine resistance, and not scaring the cat are all skills that require nuance and practice, but distinguish true romantics from sexless inkeepers. Take a line from the sales world: “if you can’t close, you’re an entertainer.”

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“Women Don’t Need A Provider”: A Bogus Meme

In both the mainstream media and our little corner of the Internet, there is a meme floating around that “women don’t need a provider anymore.” It seeks to answer the beta’s lament with a confirmation of his worst fears – “in fact, my good sir, women have no use for you. You’re not attractive, and your material offerings have no market either.”

To be short about it, I think this idea is bunk.

There’s really two separate questions to examine:

  • Do women benefit in the net from male providers?
  • Do women exhibit visceral responses to wealth and to provider behaviors that induce them to mate and/or bond with said men?

Things to consider:

1. Women earn more? Maybe.

Much has been made (by me and others) of a recent study that urban single women under 30 are making more money than men in the same demographic. I think that study is very important, especially when it comes to policy questions about ensuring equal pay for equal work and the balance of genders in college, and I am curious to see if it is reproduced and/or continues to hold true as the white-collar workforce is overwhelmingly populated by women coming out of female-heavy college environments.

But there’s an important caveat to the study result: it’s a statistic. A statistic is an amalgamation of numbers that provides a distilled picture of a distribution. It doesn’t hold true in every case in the pool, and it doesn’t claim to. A classic illustration of the limitations of stats is “men are taller than women;” not every man is taller than every woman, but it is generally true such that it makes sense to make male pants in larger sizes than female slacks.

What the pay-gap statistic means is that the previous presumption that a given man is making more than a given woman is a bad assumption to make. In any event, though, I don’t think women care that the stats say they’re making more. Women have been loath to give up the expectation that men will give them free stuff on dates (it serves as a signaling mechanism that she has higher value than him), and one of the modern rationalizations has been “well women still make less than men.” That rationalization will continue to be marketed until and unless every woman makes more than every man.

2. Most women DO benefit from a second income

When I first entered the workforce for real, I quickly came to regard the “women don’t need providers” thing as a myth. Because I looked around and I didn’t see a lot of women who were living a financially secure life, not necessarily because of poor spending habits and over-use of credit (although that was true in some cases). Being young and on your own, with student loan debt and relocation costs to bear, takes a lot of money. A security deposit, a new car, a business wardrobe, eating out a lot if you work too much to cook for yourself, while on the low-rage rungs of the ladder while you hope to prove you deserve the big bucks on the back half of your twenties, can add up fast.

As they get later in life, the trappings of the middle-upper class lifestyle expand with their costs – better cars, suburban homes, creature comforts. When I look at the educated married women I know, they stand to lose a significant chunk of their standard of living in the event of a divorce.

For women in the lower middle or blue-collar classes, the second-income benefit is self-evident – there’s just not enough money in a single blue-collar income to provide the comfort a typical woman is going to expect given her lifelong exposure to glossy marketing, commercial television and modern fairy tales.

And don’t forget the biggest elephant in the room – children change everything. A woman who wants to slow down her career track after 30 to be more available for kids (slipping out early to go to sporting events, more vacations and fewer working weekends) may find that in a few short years she doesn’t outearn her husband after all, and may not even be bringing positive income to the family when the cost of daycare is factored in.

3. Career is a big DHV for a man

It has been a source of eternal frustration for careerist feminists that their rise in the ranks has not made them more attractive to men the way they find male bigwigs. In some ways I am sympathetic to their frustration; they were told that not only could a dedicated career lifestyle bring them reliable life satisfaction that wasn’t dependent on the cooperation of a man that a relationship depends on, but it could bring them access to enough attractive men that they could live the a la carte romantic lifestyles they saw portrayed in media as the province of corner-office corporate impresarios.

But hypergamy lives, and so a man who commands more power also commands more attractive power. Women will still respond preferentially to a man with preferential access to the social machinery.

4. Money is a proxy for success and status

I’ve long contended that money, per se, is not a trigger of sexual attraction. It will certainly make the girls swoon when you tell them the guy you are dating packs six figures, but every beta knows that flashing cash and buying her things doesn’t get her in the sack any quicker if your game sucks.

What money does provide is a proxy marker for a couple of other things – one is high social status (either coming from a high-status family or acquiring it through career success), and the other is a high-class, stimulating lifestyle. So women will still respond preferentially to a man with access to resources.

Radio man Tom Leykis asserted that “women dig the smell of money – you don’t have to marry them or even give them money, you just have to HAVE money. It’s like getting a blind man to go into a bakery – you don’t have to buy him a loaf, the smell alone will draw him in.” (Quoting from memory, I’ll dig up the show clip if anybody is really interested.)

CONCLUSION

So to me, this “women don’t need a provider” meme sounds a lot like the old “she doesn’t need a man!” slogan, and I’ve always regarded that slogan as a form of sour-grapes complaint. The complaint being that the price of landing a good catch of a man is too high, requiring too much “sacrifice” from her in terms of toning down her standoffish personality, giving up some of her self-directed free time and yielding at times to another person’s desires.

I find the claim fatuous because it’s so painfully obvious from watching their behavior and reading their magazines and advice columns that women do need men – they desperately crave the comfort and modern social proof of having a man at their side, and benefit from the man’s resources, to say nothing of the deep instinctual needs they are literally built to have satisfied by men.

I sometimes wonder: in the quiet backrooms where feminists are painstakingly honest about things, how many of their hearts break that what’s really holding back true equality at work and in the home is not male bigotry but women’s preference for men of higher status than them.

Men don’t seem to have any problem with female success – plenty of construction workers or cubicle accountants will date a corporate lawyer or a middle manager, as long as she is attractive and pleasant enough in the evening hours. It’s women who consistently moan of their hunger for the “traditional male role” of “protector” and “provider,” in an era where the necessity for violence and physical labor is at an all-time low and society has been rearranged to allow women to go their own way.

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Video Poll on Nice Guys Versus Bad Boys Yields Stark Truths

Person-on-the-street interviewer (and Rivers Cuomo impersonator) Kassem  has an outstanding video in which he surveys women on the eternal question: “nice guys or bad boys?”

The video starts with a predictable range of responses, from “bad boys” and “nice guys” to “a little of both” or “I go back and forth.”

TWO NOTABLE RESPONSES

  • “I thought I wanted a nice guy, but I was attracted so much when he was an asshole around me!” (it is revealed in the long-form interview tape that this girl is dating a white rapper)

This cuts to the heart of what game and social dynamics bloggers have been saying for a long time: women will tell guys and pollsters they want a nice guy, and they might even visualize themselves with the mythical nice guy, but the revealed preference – the real-life specimen they instinctually respond to – is for a man with tendencies towards social and personal dominance, and a marked lack of concern for niceties around the women whose company he enjoys.

Recall also that even for women who really do like the nice guy, the “nice” is very rarely the actual attractive quality. That normally comes from other value stores like social proof and emotional connection. When a woman is attracted to you, you can be the “nice” to her and not worry about pushing her away. But if she’s not attracted to you, being the nice is either neutral or will actively repel her further. Once she’s attracted, the nice can be used to further the relationship, as you are showing your own availability and investment.

This balance goes back to a Badger maxim: “You can only be as beta as you are alpha.”

  • “Nice guys with a bad-boy attitude.” 

When I heard this, I thought it made zero sense. Then I realized she’s hitting on several different points at once.

One interpretation is that she wants a bad boy who will be a “nice guy on inside” just for her, whose bad-boy image melts once he falls in love with her and realizes she really loves him.

Another is that she wants a guy who is not so much of a bad boy that he’s going to deal drugs, destroy property or beat her.

Another take is that she wants all the stability and comfort goodies that come from the suburban beta-male lifestyle, but wants the same man to have that little bit of rebellious or brooding shtick to him that will work to turn her on. Trouble is, lots of guys can’t hack that attitude without looking like poseurs – Seth Green’s ghetto-white character in Can’t Hardly Wait comes to mind. And by the same token, it’s very difficult to compartmentalize that attitude as a man and not have it leak out at work, at family barbecues, etc. Telling the neighborhood pastor to take a chill pill isn’t exactly a winning move for community acceptance.

Far be it from me to make real prejudgments about people, but I think it’s worth nothing that this woman has a tattoo crossing her bikini line…in my general experience, the tolerance of a highly attractive woman with visible tattoos for a true-blue beta nice guy is pretty low. So my guess is that her concept of an attractive man weighs pretty heavily towards the “bad boy attitude.”

This is all kind of funny to me honestly, because growing up in suburbia myself, I’d hear girls talk about “bad boys” and they would be talking about guys who would talk back to the teacher, or swipe the occasional bag of Ruffles from the lunch service – token forms of non-cooperation with bourgeois social codes. What rebels.

Whereas once I entered the real world, “bad boys” meant guys who had done hard time, or could score a line of cocaine, or would bareknuckle for fun. Girls who had not kicked the taste for bad boys by their early 20’s, or who sought greater and greater amounts of the thrill, stood at the precipice of some very serious damage to their lives. Damage that Mom and Dad sometimes couldn’t get them out of, because again, the real bad boy doesn’t care that her dad is a bigwig who’s angry that you’ve made his little girl upset.

Finally, I find a slight pattern among the bad-boy lovers in the video where they are a bit more done up, a bit prissy, it’s like they are looking for a man who will see through their shit and call them on it, and your average beta guy who’s been raised to be “respectful” to women just doesn’t fit the bill (I put “respect” in quotation marks because there’s nothing respectful about letting someone get away with foul behavior. The normalization of bitchiness really does good women a disservice.)

WHY?

When asked why, typical responses emerged…

“‘Cause they’re more interesting.”

“Spontaneous.”

“Trouble.”

“[Nice guys] are too nice, you can walk all over them.”

…mixed with eye-poppers:

“I like it when they beat up on me.” (this quote is verbatim!)

“Nice guys bore the hell out of me.”

“I’ve got daddy issues.”

And one really interesting, insightful exchange:

“Good guys, they’ve always got something to criticize you about, if you’re smoking or drinking, they’re like, you’re too pretty to do this. Naw, f*%$ that, you know what I’m sayin’?”

“So nice guys get on your case about trying to make you a better person, bad boys know you’re a shitty person and they accept it.”

“Exactly!”

This recalls Athol Kay’s line that “half the fun of dating the bad boy is that she gets to be the bad girl.”

Also note the one woman who said she wanted her man to be a bit more of a bad boy “in bed.” I’m guessing she’s far from the only woman.

DO NICE GUYS FINISH LAST?

“I guess you gotta be a nice guy to let her finish first.”

FRAMING

Kassem played it really well at three points. He asked one woman who liked bad boys, “why are you so attracted to us?” Thus framing himself, a dude with a microphone, as a bad boy. If the girls don’t believe the frame, they’ll at least laugh, Another woman he asked (in front of her boyfriend) “what’s wrong with you on the inside that makes you into bad boys?”

I am going to roll this question into a Mystery-style female opinion routine for use in the field.

If she says she likes nice guys, you can roll with “do you ever wish the nice guy would be a bit more bad?” with a smirk, and hopefully tap into the “secret desires” sector of her brain. Talking about our secrets is a fast-track way to build trust and comfort.

If she says she likes bad boys, you can roll with “why are you so attracted to us?” (said matter-of-factly, assuming the sale) or if you sense she has a very high self-concept that can take the blow of a hard neg, “what’s wrong on the inside that makes you attracted to the bad boy?”

The point of the sequence is not to talk about other guys she’s dated, it’s to get her thinking emotionally about attraction, to get her talking personally to you (moreso than “where do you live/what do you do?”) and possibly to get some information about the traits she has preferred in men so as to calibrate your game.

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