Tales From The Wall

Coming back from visiting my parents for Christmas, I got talking to a woman at the bag claim carousel. (Since I started reading Roissy, I can’t see the word “carousel” without laughing out loud.) We exchanged some pleasantries and I got to thinking that she seemed very familiar somehow.

Then it hit me – two years ago, I had sat next to her on a flight to my hometown and we had chatted extensively. She opened the conversation when she saw me reading “Lady Chatterley’s Lover” (between that and the Married Man Sex Life Primer, I believe I have pioneered a subset of day game that involves reading titillating books in public). I recall finding her reasonably pretty and interesting and also getting her business card but not following up; she had no mobile number and the idea of phone-game at her business desk was not appealing.

You’re probably guessing the punchline at this point…it was difficult to recognize her as the same girl. In two years she had gone from – I use these word descriptively and not pejoratively – “curvy” to “husky,” her hair didn’t have its previous sheen, and her skin tone was considerably less healthy.

Another late-young-adult professional had started to hit The Wall.

There’s more than age to The Wall. I’m someone who thinks that an unhealthy look reflects not only unhealthy choices regarding diet and exercise, but an unhealthy overall lifestyle – stress, unrealistic aims, unfulfilling habits, poor sleep, bad personal relationships, an aggravating job situation, and more. Aging is going to happen, but it doesn’t have to run you ragged and make you unrecognizable to casual acquaintances.

I’ve seen an improved job situation dramatically boost an individual’s appearance of health and wellness.

I’ve seen even marginal increases in doing something he loves take a man’s life from mediocre to very happy, even with considerable shit in the rest of his life.

In my own life, a bit more sleep has extensive benefits for my libido, grit and mental clarity.

Relationship stress and the hunt for couplehood can be a big factor in an unhealthy psyche, particularly for women. If the constant stream of articles coming out of the Huffington Post and the Atlantic are any guide, late 20s/early 30s single women are prone to be very unhappy or at least very anxious about their nonmarried or non-relationshipped status and the dwindling number of candidates. This was wonderfully played up in a music video I discussed here. I know a number of women who definitely are not besieged by anxiety and disappointment, so it’s not an absolute, but I also know a number of women who have grown up insisting they “didn’t need a man” but now find themselves feeling lost without the stability offered by marriage and family; in reality, I don’t think this was a flip-flop of their desires as much as a subconscious expectation that marriage would always be there for the taking.

But I digress. I have no indication that this single-serving friend from baggage claim is unhappily single or otherwise concerned with her social status. But she doesn’t look good, and that tells me something’s not right in her life.

My aim here isn’t to taunt or criticize, but just to note that the changes of age can come up fast like a curving exit offramp. You let a few healthy habits slip here and there and before you know it, you’ve downshifted a point or two in SMV and with your body (and possibly your mind) settling into a middle-aged concept you’re probably not going to get it back. It changes the way you feel about yourself and changes the way people react to you. Honestly this goes for men and women.

That’s why part of your medium-term life plan should always be how to hedge against The Wall and “protect” your SMV.


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17 responses to “Tales From The Wall

  1. Yes of course women will need to protect their SMV as it declines with age and other factors, since most of their SMV is in looks it will need to be protected as it will only dwindle with time. Men also need to work towards raising theirs too. So staying fit, having a fulfilling job, good social standing should always be a goal for men.

  2. “Another late-young-adult professional had started to hit The Wall.”

    Good point. There’s a difference between starting to hit the Wall and hitting the Wall, but many women who get exposed to this concept don’t seem to realize it. A woman starts to hit the Wall when she notices that she’s receiving less interest from men she finds sexually attractive. She hits the Wall when men she’s sexually attracted to aren’t even seeking casual sex with her. At least that’s how I see it. Many years can pass between the two – maybe 3-6 years, or even more.

  3. LongLostFriend

    Just curious: Did you mention to her that you remembered her?

  4. My experience has been starting to hit the Wall generally starts at 27 (depending on other things) and when they are on the other side is when they get hostile to men and start blaming their problems on them.

  5. “Hey, I met your younger sister on a flight a couple years ago. Or was that your daughter?”

  6. Good point. In addition to retirement planning, many of us ought to focus on age planning. The young dudes in the Manosphere are going to get old. How do they plan on handling it? Women just don’t seem to plan for this.

    I meet a lot of single, childless women in their 30s, 40s, and even 50s, and while some are bangable, in others there is a sadness or despair that they try to mask with acting or medication.

  7. Ashur, that is a serious LOZL!


    “Just curious: Did you mention to her that you remembered her?”

    No I didn’t , the conversation was on its way out and I didn’t think I’d be trying to meet up with her again so I let the whole thing slide.

  8. Mark

    I’m sure you could have played some ‘it was meant to be’ game on her to get her to meet up. Or were you just not attracted to her in that way anymore?

  9. DC Phil

    So, for some of these women, this is what happens with the Wall:


  10. kfg

    “I believe I have pioneered a subset of day game that involves reading titillating books in public”

    An old classic right up there with the night game, “Would you like to see my etchings?”

  11. I just looked up a few of the hotties from high school and man have they aged and ballooned out. I just LMAO’d thinking about one I had once had a crush on.

  12. Marky Mark

    When they start hitting the wall is when they start acting bitchy… I can’t be around women like that it drives me crazy… not my fault your ex bf didn’t want to marry you.

  13. It’s been my experience that many post-wall women voluntarily take themselves out of the dating marketplace. While they will never admit it out loud, they know that they will never attract the men that they actually desire. They will rationalize the hell out of that decision but still, they know. They are not stupid.

    Women also talk about the wall but very secretively or surreptitiously.

  14. Re: “I believe I have pioneered a subset of day game that involves reading titillating books in public”, Heartiste beat you to it a couple years ago:

    “I’ve brought books to bars and found that they served as excellent conversation openers from girls who were curious what I was reading, particularly if the book had a racy cover that I liberally flashed around.”


  15. Lamont Cranston

    HanSolo’s right. I’m 50 and have never been to a high school reunion, but I have got a few facebook connections. I’ll be dammed if almost ever single hottie from my senior class hasn’t put on a hundred pounds. Sure, we’re solidly middle age. It’s unfair to expect a woman to keep a perfect bikini body that far into life. But – 100 pounds? Why have they all let themselves become land whales?

  16. Pingback: First quotage of the year. | Dark Brightness

  17. Han Solo, “I just looked up a few of the hotties from high school and man have they aged and ballooned out. I just LMAO’d thinking about one I had once had a crush on.”

    It’s hilarious, once the spell is broken, you can feel so silly and/or laugh at the situation so hard. I haven’t seen that many high school crushes lose it that I didn’t spot at the time as future less than impressive bodies, but everyone is showing signs of age and some have clearly been preparing better than others for it.

    Lamont Cranston: love the name. Wealthy man about town!

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