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HBO’s Girls Exposes Pretty Lies

Not being one of the media darlings who got advance copies of HBO’s new show Girls, I had to wait for Sunday’s premiere before weighing in. I enjoyed the first episode very much, which surprised me – I wasn’t a fan of Tiny Furniture, the film that put Lena Dunham on the map and brought her an offer to collaborate from Judd Apatow.  I found Girls well written and funny – a sort of bizarre, young singles’ Curb Your Enthusiasm, coupled with a sad poignancy. Creator, writer, director and star Lena Dunham is telling the world just how effed up life is for Gen Y, with its anemic job market and crappy sex.

The first episode gives us a look at two very different couples, neither of which seems long for this world. They represent very well the contemporary diametric in sex and relationships, with its masculinized women and feminized men.  Still, either or both of these couples could limp along for ages in a very meh sort of way. This is courtship by inertia.

 

Marnie is dating Charlie, a boy so head over heels in love that he needs a constant “fix,” touching, stroking, grinning at his beloved. At one point, the morning after Marnie has avoided him by “accidentally” falling asleep in another room while watching Mary Tyler Moore, she  hands him her dirty mouthguard. He happily takes it and then signals his intent to kiss her good morning. 

Comin’ atcha… Here it comes…MWAH..that was my kiss blowing up on you.

We cringe with her, and we’re not surprised when she discusses her growing repulsion with Hannah shortly afterwards.

Hannah:  You literally slept in my bed to avoid him.

Marnie: I know. Hannah, I’ve turned a corner. His touch just feels like a weird uncle putting his hand on my knee at Thanksgiving. 

Hannah: (Sigh.) What does it even feel like to be loved that much?

Marnie: It makes me feel like such a bitch because I can feel him being so nice to me – and yet it makes me so angry!

Hannah: I think you need to admit something to yourself, which is that you’re sick of eating him out. ‘Cause he has a vagina.

That night, Charlie tries to get kinky by proposing a little role play, and Marnie suggests it might work if he pretends to be a stranger. “Like, someone who acts completely different from you.” Ouch. 

In the other corner, we find Hannah and Adam, f*ckbuddies except for the buddy part. They can’t have been at this for long, because Adam appears to observe the tattoos on Hannah’s body for the first time. Nevertheless, he’s indifferent enough to make it clear he’s already tired of her. He never texts her back, and when she stops by one day because she was “in his neighborhood” her affable eagerness provides a discomfiting contrast to his bored contempt. 

Hannah: I like you so much, I don’t understand why you disappear.

Adam:  What are you talking about? I’m right here.

   …You modern career woman, I know what you like, you think you can just come in here and talk all that noise?

   …Lie flat on your stomach, now reach back and grab your feet. Now stay in that position but take all that shit off.

Frank Bruni, writing The Bleaker Sex in the New York Times, describes the unfolding sex scene as he takes her from behind, looking bored:

“So I can just stay like this for a little while?” she asks. “Do you need me to move more?”

He needs her to intrude less. “Let’s play the quiet game,” he answers.

From the PC vantage point of a gay male who has no dog in this fight, Bruni asks, “You watch these scenes and other examples of the zeitgeist-y, early-20s heroines of “Girls” engaging in, recoiling from, mulling and mourning sex, and you think: Gloria Steinem went to the barricades for this?”

Meanwhile, in an eerie recollection of my recent description of the Goldilocks dilemma - women trying to find men worthy of both lust and attachment in just the right mix – writer Annie James channels Goldilocks in a post at The Frisky, identifying with the nice guy vs. asshole quandary.

Judging from my social media streams and a litany of text messages from friends, most of us watching “Girls” were struck by the dilemma of dating the asshole versus dating the nice guy and how neither is a viable option.

About six months ago I started seeing a sharp-mouthed, emotionally-damaged gentleman with his own serious commitment issues. He didn’t return emails or calls or make plans with me.

“What do you like about me?” I asked him. “You’re brunette and you have a vagina,” he replied.

When I asked what he expected to get out of our relationship, he told me to stop acting like a turkey. Then he shrugged.

“I don’t date girls longer than a fiscal quarter … and I don’t trust women. I’m easily bored.”

I was a little in love.

The meaner he was, the harder I fell. He once called me a retarded slut right after we had sex. On second thought, he might have still been inside me at the time. I was angry and disgusted. I stormed out of his house. I texted him some nasty expletive along with: “I should come up there and smack you.” He evenly replied: “You don’t have the code to get back in. Stop being a turkey.”

Wow, that is some tight Game right there. James (who’s in her 30s, by the way) sounds like she may have dated a certain prominent Game blogger who shall remain nameless. Predictably:

For the exact length of a fiscal quarter, he built barriers, I tried to tear them down and my cravings reached a fever pitch. At the close of four months, as promised, he informed me that we should no longer date over the post-modern Post-It note: GChat.

“It’s not like I owe you anything,” he typed, not even having the courtesy to include a sad face emoticon.

James decides to try the nice guy next:

He would meet me anywhere that was convenient for me. He texted. He emailed. He told me I was smart and pretty and that he thought every little thing that I did was awesome. He wanted to meet my friends. He wanted to meet my dog…He kissed me on the street outside of the bar [one] night. “I don’t want to play games. I really like you,” he said.

I hated him. Like another character in “Girls,” Allison Williams’ Marnie, who can’t stand her too-adoring, too perfect-seeming boyfriend, I was disgusted by his niceness. Similarly, there wasn’t an ounce of my loins that could quiver for this man. I even tried the age-old libido lubricant beer goggles in an attempt to spark some physical passion.

Five shots of Jameson later I couldn’t even fathom a cuddle. He made my skin crawl.

In an effort to understand her many failed relationships, James consulted Helen Fisher, an expert on the brain and attraction, and got a real answer:

When a person feels rejected, brain regions linked with craving, addiction and obsession become active. You can’t stop thinking about the person. You become obsessed. Someone is camping in your head and you can’t get them out. Anytime there is a real barrier in the relationship and you are not sure if you can win the relationship, it heightens the craving. The less you think you can win the person, the hotter the craving.

Of course, Fisher is describing the dopamine reward system here. I’d b willing to bet James is a DRD4 mutant. Acknowledging that she is likely to pull her hair out and become a madwoman if she keeps going for guys who call her a retarded slut, James holds out hope that the perfect man, the one who is “just right” will show up. 

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W7ZrBCY9ipI

I’m looking forward to the rest of the Girls season, as Lena Dunham continues to expose the reality of the schizophrenic demands women are making of men.

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  • Ramble

    James holds out hope that the perfect man, the one who is “just right” will show up.

    And she will soon tell that perfect man how she was a complete, and dedicated, slut for a guy who thought, almost literally, nothing of her.

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    This is really sad. These women should never even kiss those assholes, nevermind jump into bed with men like that.

    This also sort of explains why my husband had little luck in romance. He acts way closer to the nice guys than to the jerks. He didn’t play games, called me and texted me all the time, and he is really cuddly and touchy-feeling. How other girls don’t appreciate this is truly beyond my comprehension.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Hope

      Personally, I think a guy saying “No games. I like you a lot.” is a very alpha move. It demonstrates confidence and self-respect. I think the women who can’t stand it are the ones who don’t feel worthy of the affection.

      An exception is the man who says this immediately, and who pushes for commitment after the first date. A woman is going to view that as desperate behavior. But it doesn’t sound like the guy in James’ story did that.

  • ExNewYorker

    “The meaner he was, the harder I fell. He once called me a retarded slut right after we had sex. On second thought, he might have still been inside me at the time. I was angry and disgusted. ”

    Any man, after reading that, who would want her as more than a P&D deserves to have an intervention (or pushed off a bridge).

    Finding a low hypergamy, low narcissism, feminine woman almost seems like a fool’s errand. The women on that show (and the Frisky) make MGTOW palatable…

    Is that new show set in NYC?

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @ENY

      Finding a low hypergamy, low narcissism, feminine woman almost seems like a fool’s errand. The women on that show (and the Frisky) make MGTOW palatable…

      The Frisky really is terrible, and it just keeps getting worse and worse. Essays like this one are an embarrassment, and I confess it was hard for me to write about it. Seemed only fair, though. Women like this are being indulged and given a platform. I do credit Lena Dunham with portraying this accurately without any regard for the politics of it. She played an equally desperate and pathetic character in her film, incidentally, who had guys turning down her offer of no-strings sex.

  • Ramble

    Is that new show set in NYC?

    No. Manhattan is too expensive for just out of college girls like that. They are, I’m guessing, slumming it in Brooklyn in apartments that are only, say, 300K.

    That is all they can afford with their 23k per year salary (and daddy’s help, of course).

  • asd

    guys who aren’t deaf hear stories all the time like that show and the columns, and from real life experiences

    hopefully it’s obvious that any normal guy would rather be the asshole who gets women obsessed over him and lust after him than the boring nice guy they detest – regardless of his normal personal tendencies to be mean or be nice

    any smart male will clearly see that the dark triad represents an overwhelmingly winning strategy compared to the alternatives… any other advice to guys is simply 1) not as likely to produce successful results and 2) not looking out for their best interests

  • asd

    talking about strategies for getting girls of course… things like mgtow have different goals

  • GudEnuf

    Surely there’s got to be a way to keep a woman happy without letting her take you for granted though.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      Surely there’s got to be a way to keep a woman happy without letting her take you for granted though.

      You need to select a woman who demonstrates appreciation for you from the start. Don’t compromise on that. I really don’t think Ms. James is representative of all women, though I acknowledge there are many like her. All the more reason for men to have high standards, as Jeremy Nicholson pointed out in the male mating strategies post.

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    Susan, I agree. Some women seem unable to receive any amount of real love and affection, perhaps because they feel undeserving. These are probably issues stemming from childhood.

    GudEnuf, reading about all of the other dysfunctional people in the world make me not take my husband for granted. :P

  • Maggie

    We’ve been hearing for years about Gen Y having an overinflated sense of self-esteem and entitlement. I’m not so sure. It’s as if many these young women’s self-esteem is out of whack. They think they deserve to move to New York, work at a cool, creative job that doesn’t pay enough to live on while getting by on the bank of Mom and Dad.

    Yet, these bright, creative young women show no respect for themselves by letting men treat them like dirt, far worse than young women in previous generations did. It’s sounds like low self-esteem.

    Fortunately, most young women I know are not like this.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Maggie

      We’ve been hearing for years about Gen Y having an overinflated sense of self-esteem and entitlement. I’m not so sure. It’s as if many these young women’s self-esteem is out of whack.

      That’s an incredibly perceptive comment. I say that because you totally anticipated Lena Dunham’s remark in a recent interview. She said that her character Hannah is typical of most 24 yo women today, in that she has “total self-confidence and no self-worth.” It sounds to me like we’ve raised a generation of both men and women who are trying to fake it till they make it.

  • Cooper

    “I don’t date girls longer than a fiscal quarter … and I don’t trust women. I’m easily bored.”
    I was a little in love.”

    VS

    “He kissed me on the street outside of the bar [one] night. “I don’t want to play games. I really like you,” he said.
    I hated him.”

    “neither is a viable option.”

    Fried-ice, anyone?

  • Abaddon

    I think the message is clear to any male reading this (that is, any male who is unfamiliar with game – and there are a lot of them about – esp. Gen Y males).

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Abaddon

      All of society needs to swallow the red pill. We can’t tear this down and rebuild it until everyone has woken up. I like the show, because Lena Dunham has soooooo swallowed it herself, and she’s telling it like it is. I’d be willing to bet she is entirely unacquainted with Game (or just minimally acquainted). If she knows what it is, she should endorse it because a Charlie with Game is going to be a heck of a lot more relationship-worthy than Adam ever could be. I really did wince when she handed him her funky night guard!

  • Emily

    >>” They think they deserve to move to New York, work at a cool, creative job that doesn’t pay enough to live on while getting by on the bank of Mom and Dad.”

    At risk of being judged, I’m going to share my own Gen Y cautionary tale.

    Basically, I got an MA in a useless liberal arts subject. It was at a good school, and I got good grades. I knew that jobs in my field were super competitive, but I figured that at the very least I’d be able to find some sort of low-level office or receptionist job or something. (Maybe it was a stupid assumption, but nobody told me otherwise.) It’s not like I’m not expecting a “cool creative job” or anything. Just somebody who’s willing to pay me to staple papers together answer phones or photocopy things or something. So far I haven’t had any luck though. I’m also in the UK, where the recession is really bad. It’s not a pleasant process, and constantly reading about how “spoilt” and “entitled” we all are doesn’t help. :(

    I have a lot of friends who are in the same boat as me at least, so at least I know it’s not just me. I recently signed up for some IT courses though, so hopefully I’ll be able to finish those and maybe find a low-level STEM job.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Emily

      GBFM was tickled pink by your squeal of delight and reported it at Heartiste. 42 people have clicked through to your comment so far, lol.

  • Cooper

    @Abaddon

    … your seriously going to make me ask?

    If I have to guess – ‘be mean, keep her kean.’

  • Stacy

    Funniest thing about that article from Bruni is all of the liberal men and women in the comments blaming the effects of pornography on “misogyny” and hypocrisy when we all know that patriarchal societies are sexually conservative and disdain porn, masturbation, adultery, homosexuality, etc. Have these people from New York, San Francisco, Portland, Oregon and other places ever meet a misogynist not fabricated out of their women’s studies minds? Hint: Sexists aren’t ecstatic about women’s sexual liberation. They pretty much hate porn and don’t use it.

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    Sorry to hear that Emily. :/ For myself, I got an undergraduate degree in a useless liberal arts subject, but throughout college I worked in the Web field, and I got a starter job right out of college with a firm that had big-named clients due to some self-taught skills which were cutting edge at the time. Since then I’ve been doing decently by working for larger places.

    Gen Y is really all about the tech sector, and just about everything is Web-based now. Even my husband is learning ASP.NET and C#, and he has a MS in applied mathematics. He says he has an advantage because with the front-end programming he can just come to me. I guess I got lucky with the field I was interested in and chose.

  • Scott

    @emily
    If someone would have told you do you think you would have listened or responded “I’m following my dream?” Most of the people to whom I suggest that they might want to go into a field with future employment options give me the “Follow my dream” response.

  • Cooper

    “It’s not like I’m not expecting a “cool creative job” or anything. Just somebody who’s willing to pay me to staple papers together answer phones or photocopy things or something.”

    :)

  • Emily

    >> “If someone would have told you do you think you would have listened or responded “I’m following my dream?” ”

    If I knew that there would be literally NO JOBS, then I wouldn’t have done it. Like I said, I knew there were very few jobs in my field. But Universities are always hosting information nights etc. talking about how employers actually LOVE liberal arts students (for real), so I assumed that I’d always have the option of finding a job in an unrelated field.

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    Emily, your best bet is to try for internships and get experience. Companies nowadays want experience plus degree, because there are so many people looking for work.

  • Lokland

    Funny story.

    In uni during undergrad I lived with 5 girls.

    One of them was an English (insert more useless things here) major.
    We got into it one night, me saying she would never have a job and that lib. arts departments were shrinking everywhere.

    She seriously and really believed that:
    a) lib. arts was the future of the world
    b) as an English major she would be able to work up to a CEO position of a nonprofit by 30
    c) have 3 kids while at it

    I was legitimately stunned. I don’t know what lies they tell kids who like English but heres the real deal.

    If you can speak it and write it thats probably more than enough.
    No one gives a fuck if you can recite Hamlet line-by-line and describe the metaphor to some such and such a thing.

    P.S She has 3 kids, her and hubby (also an English lit. major) plan to own their own Tim Hortons someday when they can save their money up.
    P.S.S They both work at Tim Hortons.
    P.S.S.S I know I’m an ass but theres comes a certain point where saying I told you so becomes pointless. Now I just hang my head in shame.

  • http://weheartpets.co.uk/ Anna

    This new show is going to be crazy! I think that Girls will be my new favorite, I just can’t wait for the next episode. I have totally assured by the pilot.

  • Lokland

    @Cooper

    Fried ice or baked alaska.
    Its all about your mindset.

  • Escoffier

    $300K doesn’t even get you a closet in the UMC/bobo parts of Brooklyn these days.

  • Lokland

    As personal anecdote.

    Same girls in uni (different girl) I very distinctly remember saying “he is just to nice”, “I feel horrible for thinking he is too nice.”

    Are women pressured to like nice guys? (Similar to the fat acceptance movement) I can’t think of why else she would feel guilty.

    On a side note, they did have a happy ending. They talked about it and he manned up or something with her. Whatever it was they have rug rats crawling around now.

  • Cooper

    @Lokland

    “Are women pressured to like nice guys?”

    I think the guilt comes from realizing that they actually don’t like what they say they wanted.
    Girls first gets burnt by alpha > declares she will solely seek ‘nice guys’ > discovers she likes him even less than the jerk > feels bad for disliking the guy for what being what she specifically chose him for.

  • Emily

    Lokland,

    Most girls will also try to discourage their friends from dating jerks. There’s nothing more annoying than having to listen to your friend complain over and over again about the same douchebag.

    I think it’s one of those social pressure vs. biological urges things.

    That being said, some girls require more “alpha” than others.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Emily

      Most girls will also try to discourage their friends from dating jerks. There’s nothing more annoying than having to listen to your friend complain over and over again about the same douchebag.

      I’ve seen friends get together and tell a girl they won’t hear another word about so-and-so, she’s on her own. It doesn’t necessarily “cure” the girl, but at least they stop giving positive reinforcement, and they don’t have to hear it anymore.

  • Emily

    Susan,

    That’s hilarious. I’m very amused that he’s flattered, but also slightly horrified to be mentioned at Heartiste. I refrain from commenting at the more “manly” Manosphere blogs for a reason. : P

    Also, I would find GBFM hilarious even if I didn’t think that he was secretly Roissy/Heartiste haha.

  • Emily

    Whenever I read GBFM’s posts, I always imagine them in this voice:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oe7AG7mNn1s :P

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Emily

      Whenever I read GBFM’s posts, I always imagine them in this voice:

      I wish I had not gone to that link! Now I’ve got that voice stuck in my head.

  • Cooper

    Re: GBFM’s posts

    Whenever he writes “lzozozlzolzolzlozoz,” which he does A LOT, I always wonder is he laughing, or sleeping? haha

  • Cooper

    Re: “lzozozlzolzolzlozoz”

    I imagine a narcolpetic laughing out loud, coming in and out of zzzzzzs.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      I imagine a narcolpetic laughing out loud, coming in and out of zzzzzzs.

      This cracked me up. I’d love to see a video of that.

  • A Definite Beta Guy

    Why would the perfect man want to be with a woman who lets herself get disrespected like that?

    Sort of like the “I wouldn’t want to be in any religion that would have me.”

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      Sort of like the “I wouldn’t want to be in any religion that would have me.”

      This is a widespread (no pun) phenomenon among women. It’s ironic, given the way we’ve been propping up female self-esteem in the schools for the last 20 years. Obviously, self-esteem is not generated by “Participant” trophies, or by being told you’re better than men.

  • Sassy6519

    That “Smack the pony/The perfect guy” video was quite funny.

    Are women pressured to like nice guys? (Similar to the fat acceptance movement) I can’t think of why else she would feel guilty.

    It’s not really pressure, I would say. It’s more like encouragement from our friends and family to date “nice guys”.

    There have been a few times that I have been on a date with a guy, didn’t really feel attracted to him afterwards, and told my friends about it. Some of my friends have encouraged me to continue dating the guy anyway. They thought that perhaps the attraction would spark later, but their logic has never worked with me.

    For me personally, I like a man to have an “edge” about himself. He doesn’t have to be a full blown bad boy asshole, but he needs some edge to him. An edge is sexy in a man, in my opinion, and men who lack it have a brotherly feel to them.

  • ExNewYorker

    @Hope:

    “He didn’t play games, called me and texted me all the time, and he is really cuddly and touchy-feeling. How other girls don’t appreciate this is truly beyond my comprehension.”

    Revealed preference (a very powerful concept). The reality is that for a large chunk of girls, they actually don’t really appreciate it or at least, it’s low on their “checklist” of priorities.

    “This also sort of explains why my husband had little luck in romance”. I can empathize. It took me a while to find someone who actually appreciated the more “beta qualities” in a guy.

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    Susan, what’s wrong with the nightguard thing? If the girl is in love with him then it would seem like a sweet gesture. The problem is that the girl was never in love with the boyfriend. People in love do all kinds of stuff and don’t think it’s gross.

    Full disclosure: I once washed my husband’s retainer for him because he hadn’t cleaned it in forever. I also don’t mind his morning breath. I kiss him all the time while he still has his retainer in, so maybe I’m just as “beta” as the sappy fella.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Hope

      This is a woman who’s lost attraction for her bf, and after avoiding sleeping with him, she greets him in the kitchen in the morning by handing him her dirty nightguard. I think it’s rude on her part. It just rubbed me the wrong way.

      I’m not one to share a toothbrush or make out before brushing my teeth, but on the other hand I have no problem with the idea of caring for my husband if he were ill, including any and all bodily functions. I guess I require extenuating circumstances :)

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    Susan, I get that, but from his perspective she probably just fell asleep on the couch accidentally. I think it portrays her in a worse light than the boyfriend.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    But, of course, most girls watching the show won’t see it that way. They won’t see the error of her ways and how she’s not being honest and forthright. They’ll just think he’s an “ugly boyfriend” who isn’t reading her mind and giving her tingles.

  • Odds

    @ Maggie

    “Yet, these bright, creative young women show no respect for themselves by letting men treat them like dirt, far worse than young women in previous generations did.”

    “Letting” men treat them like dirt is the wrong way of putting it. “Wanting men who treat them like dirt” would be more accurate.

    Honestly, while I agree that a lot of girls in my generation lack a meaningful sense of self-worth, I don’t think that’s the root cause of their preferences. Look at Annie James’ story about the guy she was in love with, who called her a retarded slut. Women aren’t rejecting nice guys because they feel like they don’t deserve to be treated well, it’s because they value a guy can afford to treat them poorly more than they value good treatment. (I tried to find a better way to write that and failed, so best of luck parsing that sentence).

    @ Susan

    Personally, I think a guy saying “No games. I like you a lot.” is a very alpha move.

    On paper, I’d agree, it’s brash and open. However, in practice that’s at most a late-game move (say, you’ve been married for ten years). It’s an apocalypse opener for feelings, and I just can’t envision that working until you’ve already sealed the deal. It’s a late-relationship-game alpha move – not something I’d want any random reader to pick up and try. But hey, I could be wrong.

  • Odds

    @ Ramble

    And she will soon tell that perfect man how she was a complete, and dedicated, slut for a guy who thought, almost literally, nothing of her.

    That, right there, is the red pill in one sentence. That idea, in those words or others, causes the beta in men to die a little. So, for the sake of my own sanity (some of us actually like treating people well), and for those women who actually like their men to have some comfort-traits, it would be prudent to keep women like that to a minimum. How many guys are going to see that article, or one like it, and turn into douchebags?

    I’m going to give it a few years of trying to find the balance, but I’m curious as to whether the Goldilocks “just right” guy gets the same kind of devotion (or, more narrowly, the same kind of sex) as the pure-alpha douchebags.

  • reformedmalenerd

    Wow, this is all really, really… unvarnished. I truly find this more damning than anything Roissy ever wrote. Scary stuff.

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    ExNewYorker, actually it’s worse than that. Some girls (not saying all) not only don’t appreciate it, but are actively repulsed by good male behavior.

    Incidentally, they also tend to be the “hottest” girls (at least the visibly popular girls), so guys have all the incentives to be jerks to try to attract them.

  • J

    This show makes me sad.

    “total self-confidence and no self-worth.”

    That says it all, doesn’t it? And IME, it is typical of young people that age–a lot of self-confidence based on “accomplishments” that disappears when the praise does, little sense of inherent human dignity. The result of a lot of poor parenting by my generation, I suppose.

    SW, you are ruining my marriage. I was watching the “Smack the Pony” clip with DH looking over my shoulder . He didn’t realize that it was a comedy show, muttered, “Oh, Jesus Christ!” and retreated to the basement.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @J

      SW, you are ruining my marriage. I was watching the “Smack the Pony” clip with DH looking over my shoulder . He didn’t realize that it was a comedy show, muttered, “Oh, Jesus Christ!” and retreated to the basement.

      Uh oh! Sorry! He’s got a good sense of humor, though, I’m sure he’ll take it in stride.

      BTW, the actress in that video was in Bridget Jones – a favorite movie of mine.

  • Jon

    “I don’t want to play games. I really like you,” is not alpha at all. Giving a woman this kind of validation is a very quick way to get her to go away…

    On the other hand, “stop being a turkey” is hilarious. I don’t even know what he means, but it makes me laugh. :)

  • Jackie

    So much sex, so little love. :(

    This is unfathomable to me: Where are these girls’ self-respect? How can they stay in the same room– much less share their body– with someone who holds them in such contempt? This is beyond sad.

    (BTW, I believe this hurts the guys, too. Every one of these encounters chips away at their decency, integrity and a belief of goodness in the world. How can you respect yourself when you are holding another human being in contempt, while using them for self-gratification?)

    Must cleanse palate with cat videos with kitty DJs on the turntables:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=59ZYrB8Ws7Y

  • Ramble

    $300K doesn’t even get you a closet in the UMC/bobo parts of Brooklyn these days.

    Escoffier, I did say “slumming” it.

  • BroHamlet

    @Susan

    Gotta say I LOL’d when she said something about him getting a condom and he yelled back “I’ll consider it!!”. Dick Move… This show shows it like it is, though- seems hilariously realistic. I might even have to cue this up on demand.

    @Hope

    “ExNewYorker, actually it’s worse than that. Some girls (not saying all) not only don’t appreciate it, but are actively repulsed by good male behavior.

    Incidentally, they also tend to be the “hottest” girls (at least the visibly popular girls), so guys have all the incentives to be jerks to try to attract them.”

    Many of us have learned to save the “good boy” nonsense for mom. And it’s not always the super hot girls who like jerks…just the ones who get the most attention (read: biggest egos). Ask around- you’ll find that the girls one or two notches above average get the most attention of all because that’s what most dudes think they can pull (cue the feeding frenzy).

    We’ve discussed this before. The average girl’s threshold for dominance is so high, that in some cases, anything less than a dick move is like sending chocolates. Ok, it’s not that bad all the time, but you get the point.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @BroHamlet

      I too LOL’d at that sex scene. Oy. He negged her left and right in the first episode. It’s worth watching if you get HBO.

  • Jackie

    @Maggie, Susan

    “We’ve been hearing for years about Gen Y having an overinflated sense of self-esteem and entitlement. I’m not so sure. It’s as if many these young women’s self-esteem is out of whack.

    That’s an incredibly perceptive comment. I say that because you totally anticipated Lena Dunham’s remark in a recent interview. She said that her character Hannah is typical of most 24 yo women today, in that she has “total self-confidence and no self-worth.” It sounds to me like we’ve raised a generation of both men and women who are trying to fake it till they make it.”
    ——————–
    I almost wonder… if there is a tie-in with narcissism? Narcissists have a “false self” with abnormally high sense of self-confidence and entitlement to cover up their “true self,” who is abysmally low in self-worth and self-respect. And pathetically dependent on NS (narcissistic supply, i.e. attention, good or bad).

    It’s almost like all the trophies, awards and perfectly posed FB photos have set them up to fail: If they try to venture out in the real world on their own merits, they’ll be crushed. It’s the emotional equivalent of Chinese footbinding. :(

  • Richard Aubrey

    A mix of those two…. Can you mix oil and water? Fire and ice? Nice concept, as long as you don’t actually have to, you know, do it. Or be it. Or describe it.
    BTW. Can somebody give some examples of “edge” that aren’t douchebagging it?
    Guys starting out dating know some things. They may not be correct things. As I said on another thread, you won’t believe how us early boomers were taught by all and sundry to be “nice” to women.
    But along with that is Bobby Brown and Rihanna–and the tweeters who claim they wouldn’t mind being punched in the mouth by this clown. And Charlie Sheen. And possibly some direct exposure to the “don’t be a turkey” guy and his never-fail quarterly punching bag.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      Can somebody give some examples of “edge” that aren’t douchebagging it?

      That’s a good question. Edge seems like nothing more than a euphemism for antisocial behavior. The opposite of agreeable or amiable. How odd to list that as a requirement for attraction.

  • Ramble

    All of society needs to swallow the red pill. We can’t tear this down and rebuild it until everyone has woken up. I like the show, because Lena Dunham has soooooo swallowed it herself, and she’s telling it like it is.

    You are not Lena’s mother, so will not be able to really answer this question, but…

    Do you think that she will be completely honest about the fact that she could move to Des Moines, or Grand Forks, or a few dozen other places, and live a pretty good life and find, kind, hard working, decent men? And, that she basically, needs to be financed to keep living her current life which she apparently hates/regrets?

    Taking the Red Pill (there really should be a different color for girls, like, the Brown Pill…something unfashionable) means that you also know that large cities are terrible places to start a family.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Ramble

      Do you think that she will be completely honest about the fact that she could move to Des Moines, or Grand Forks, or a few dozen other places, and live a pretty good life and find, kind, hard working, decent men?

      First, I’m not sure if you’re asking about Lena Dunham or the character Hannah. Lena Dunham is not being financed to live a life she hates – just the opposite.

      I don’t think that is a question she would ever ask herself, or something she would consider for a nanosecond. Lena Dunham is the daughter of two professional artists, and grew up in a Tribeca loft. She’s obviously talented, and NYC is the vehicle for her talent. It’s a huge part of her identity. It’s like suggesting that Woody Allen might have been happy in Poughkeepsie. I think the same reasoning would apply to Hannah. My guess is that she’d rather be single in NYC than married in Fargo.

      And, that she basically, needs to be financed to keep living her current life which she apparently hates/regrets?

      Dunham is poking fun at her own generation here. She’s commenting on the job market, but more importantly she portrays the selfish complacency of Hannah. The episode is largely dedicated to figuring out how to get back on her parents’ payroll – she’s very manipulative and it’s funny.

      One of the reasons I like the show is that Dunham has a real ability to laugh at herself. Much of the joke is at her expense.

  • Jackie

    @Ramble

    Pink pill? Scarlet pill? :)

  • reformedmalenerd

    @BroHamlet

    We’ve discussed this before. The average girl’s
    threshold for dominance is so high, that in some
    cases, anything less than a dick move is like sending
    chocolates. Ok, it’s not that bad all the time, but you
    get the point.

    This seems to be the real sticking point: if a woman wants her partner to be masterful yet kind, she should keep in mind that these qualities will always be defined in relation to the kind of energy she herself puts out. The more masculinized and agressive she is, the more firepower will be needed in reponse to maintain an impression of alpha solidity – and the less room there will be for genuine acts of kindness.

    If she is gentle and sweet-tempered, achieving a kind of dominant poise in her presence will require considerably less effort – and therefore easily coexist with considerate gestures. It’s in no way contradictory but requires a certain equilibrium.

    If being alpha in her company = simply taking confident initiatives in everyday life, then being kind and masterful at the same time is doable. If being masterful towards her requires going nuclear and treating her like garbage, there is no room for niceness, mathematically speaking.

    A high treshold for dominance in a woman either leads to nice-guy capitulation or to an all-out arms race.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @reformedmalenerd

      The more masculinized and agressive she is, the more firepower will be needed in reponse to maintain an impression of alpha solidity – and the less room there will be for genuine acts of kindness.

      That’s a great point. I hadn’t thought of it in precisely that way before, but it makes sense that masculinization would be directly predictive of hypergamy and the appetite for dominance.

      I strikes me that some women are looking for King Kong – a bizarre retreat to our prehistoric origins.

  • J

    @SW

    False alarm. I went downstairs to throw a load of towels in the washer and he was happily mixing some music that he recorded for friends over the weekend.

    That’s some funny stuff. I clicked through to Youtube and watched some more bits. The lesbian love scene is hysterical.

  • Ramble

    Pink pill? Scarlet pill?

    No, Brown.

    I know that you were being cute, and it was. But, I was being serious. One of the main ideas behind the (metaphoric) Red Pill is that it is difficult to swallow. That, you do not want to take it because you will learn the truth.

    A pink pill sounds fun and girly.

    The pill should be speckled brown. And, the kind of brown you get when you mix green and red food. Unappetizing.

    Alright, I am taking this too seriously.

  • Jackie

    @Emily
    “It’s not a pleasant process, and constantly reading about how “spoilt” and “entitled” we all are doesn’t help.

    I have a lot of friends who are in the same boat as me at least, so at least I know it’s not just me. I recently signed up for some IT courses though, so hopefully I’ll be able to finish those and maybe find a low-level STEM job.”
    ——————-
    Hey Emily!

    I’m so sorry to hear about your difficulties. So many talented people are really having a tough time of it right now. Your comments always seem really neat, so it’s hard to consider you “spoiled” or “entitled”!

    This is just a suggestion– Have you considered doing a bit of freelancing on the side for extra money? There’s all kinds of things you can do in the meanwhile. (I am stupid about computers –can send cat videos and email, that’s it!– so I focused on other stuff.) My friend cleans houses, another friend walks dogs. Another friend teaches language lessons and tutors kids and adults.

    After lending my clothes for the (seemingly) millionth time, an acquaintance offered to pay me to help her find an outfit that flattered her. She was really happy, so she spread the word. I also started an eBay store to get rid of my old stuff. It was easy and kept my closet clean. :)

    You sound so bright that I’m sure you will make things work out, Emily. :) Kindest regards–

  • J

    BTW, I believe this hurts the guys, too. Every one of these encounters chips away at their decency, integrity and a belief of goodness in the world. How can you respect yourself when you are holding another human being in contempt, while using them for self-gratification?)

    Obviously, you can’t. Oddly, I felt very sorry for the Adam character. For all the dick moves, he was still an insecure former fat boy living off his nana’s money with little sense of direction. I’d hate to have my own sons grow up like that.

    It’s almost like all the trophies, awards and perfectly posed FB photos have set them up to fail: If they try to venture out in the real world on their own merits, they’ll be crushed. It’s the emotional equivalent of Chinese footbinding.

    Great observation. I know many teens in my own neighborhood who have a room full of trophys and a weekly appointment with a therapist. And their a$$hole parents can figure out why.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @J

      Oddly, I felt very sorry for the Adam character. For all the dick moves, he was still an insecure former fat boy living off his nana’s money with little sense of direction. I’d hate to have my own sons grow up like that.

      I felt that too. At one point, she asks him how the production of his play is going and he says something like, “We’re not gonna do it. That guy is a dick.” That’s obviously a huge disappointment but he can’t acknowledge that. He also calls his parents buffoons – he’s clearly an unhappy guy.

  • Cooper

    Re: the sex scene

    I laughed when she wouldn’t stop talking, and he says “let’s play the ‘silent game'”

    The speech that the guy cooking opium on the stove told about the uselessness of college was pretty epic, I thought.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      I laughed when she wouldn’t stop talking, and he says “let’s play the ‘silent game’”

      That was funny. I am really pleasantly surprised. All the hype leading up to this show made me certain I’d hate it – it sounded like Sex and the City, only worse! Instead, it’s the opposite – because it’s honest. The fact that several guys here enjoyed aspects of it proves that it’s got a much wider potential audience.

  • Jackie

    @Ramble

    I see your point, sir. How about puce pill? Puce = like the purple you see in a bruise. Off putting, for sure. (And alliterative :) )

    The red and green = brown color sounds like when we mixed all the kinds of soda together. We called it “Suicide Punch.” :)

  • Jackie

    @J (#67)

    Hey J!
    Thanks for the kind words about my observation! 8)

    It’s funny: I remember being so ticked off at the time by my parents’ refusal to grant a centimeter of moral ground to the “self-esteem” movement. I was so jealous of my friends’ parents who coddled them and told them every finger-painting was a Picasso! If I only was able to see into the future…

    (My parents were nice but were brought up with Spartan discipline and that kind of stuff just does. not. wash. out. I remember asking my mom why she was so sparing with praise, unlike my friends’ mothers. She said, That’s because when I tell you you did something really well, you’ll know it’s true.)

  • J

    It’s funny: I remember being so ticked off at the time by my parents’ refusal to grant a centimeter of moral ground to the “self-esteem” movement. I was so jealous of my friends’ parents who coddled them and told them every finger-painting was a Picasso! If I only was able to see into the future.

    This nonsense reached its peak while I was working in adolescent mental health. I recall saying in a staff meeting that if everyone is special, then no one is special. I got shouted down. I was also against the constant giving of “rewards.” The latest research on that says it robs kids of intrinsic motivation–just like I said it would.

  • BroHamlet

    @reformedmalenerd

    This seems to be the real sticking point: if a woman wants her partner to be masterful yet kind, she should keep in mind that these qualities will always be defined in relation to the kind of energy she herself puts out. The more masculinized and agressive she is, the more firepower will be needed in reponse to maintain an impression of alpha solidity – and the less room there will be for genuine acts of kindness.

    If she is gentle and sweet-tempered, achieving a kind of dominant poise in her presence will require considerably less effort – and therefore easily coexist with considerate gestures. It’s in no way contradictory but requires a certain equilibrium.

    Yup. It’s worth noting that self-knowledge is a big part of this. Most girls 20-35 don’t have this, because it’s not required of them (for reasons that we don’t need to rehash). Sometimes you have to learn the hard way, and some of them are, but very few, and very slowly. Too bad, but that’s what being an adult is.

    If being alpha in her company = simply taking confident initiatives in everyday life, then being kind and masterful at the same time is doable. If being masterful towards her requires going nuclear and treating her like garbage, there is no room for niceness, mathematically speaking.

    A high treshold for dominance in a woman either leads to nice-guy capitulation or to an all-out arms race.

    Again, self-knowledge. But you know what, if she’s really that hard up to be treated like garbage, she’ll learn what’s up, or stay in a fog and be miserable. At some point, life will force you to learn, but it might be too late to do much about it.

  • http://www.rosehope.com Hope

    J, that’s interesting. I was raised by criticism and a mentality of scarcity. I was constantly compared to nicer kids, prettier girls, more academically accomplished students, etc. Maybe that helped me more than I knew.

  • Jackie

    @J (#71)

    *high fives J*
    J, you sound like such a great mom to your boys. Now all we need to do is clone you to replace the too-permissive parents. ;)

    “I was also against the constant giving of “rewards.” The latest research on that says it robs kids of intrinsic motivation–just like I said it would.”

    Y’know my dad totally agreed with that as well. He told me, later, that he believed it would be insulting a person’s intelligence and self-respect if they had to be awarded a prize for doing what they were supposed to do in the first place! The reward is the skill gained, the self-discipline acquired.

    PS: Interestingly, my dad asked for Amy Chua’s (Tiger Mom’s) entire oeurve for Christmas. My sister and I keep threatening to write a counterpoint: “Dinosaur Dad” for his old-school parenting techniques. ;)

  • Jackie

    @Hope

    Hi Hope!
    If you wouldn’t feel uncomfortable, how did your mom word this? Did it work for you?

    I wonder because my grandmother (after my mom died) believed VERY STRONGLY in criticism and it hurt way more than it helped. (She was also pretty much un-please-able, at least as far as I was concerned!)

  • INTJ

    @ Hope

    I always hated when my mom compared me to other kids. Luckily she didn’t do it that much. I was fine with criticism, but it was really annoying when she would point out one good thing in some kid without noticing all the bad things in him.

  • Jackie

    @Susan

    I’m sorry for being a “comment hog” and promise to pipe down after this:

    Did you realize that all the girls in this show are from super-prominent NYC families? I think some of the press is these are super-privileged girls, tons of connections, playing at struggling on TV.

    Lena Dunham = daughter of Laurie Simmons (photographer & performance artist)
    Allison Williams = daughter of NBC’s Brian Williams
    Zosia Mamet = daughter of David Mamet, arguably the greatest playwright of the 20th century
    Jemima Kirke = daughter of Simon Kirke (Bad Company)

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Jackie

      Don’t ever feel the need to pipe down – I enjoy and even rely on your positive and insightful comments! You’re like the pied piper of HUS.

      There is a lot of criticism of the casting as nepotism. I’m not sure how the casting was handled, but the only weak link is Zosia Mamet, IMO. She’s also got a small role in Mad Men, btw. She just seems all wrong for Girls, though. I don’t think she can act.

  • J

    @Hope

    I think both fulsome praise and unremitting comparison and criticism can be bad for kids. It’s always good to praise effort because effort is something a kid can control and kids need to see the link between effort and success. It’s less effective to praise things that are luck of the draw like looks, IQ, and talents. Praise also has to be realistic and precise. “That was the best piano solo ever!” is crap. The kid knows it’s not true. “You hit a couple of wrong notes, but you covered nicely.” or “Your tempo and dynamics were spot on.” are good examples of realistic praise. “You should have practiced the left hand part more.” is valid feedback. “Johnny is a better musician than you are.”–not so much.

  • J

    @Jackie

    J, you sound like such a great mom to your boys. with my kisNow all we need to do is clone you to replace the too-permissive parents.

    Thanks, Jackie. I really try my hardest with my kids. I can’t tell you how important to me it is to raise them to be well-adjusted, independent, strong, and resilient. It’s a real goal, and I’ve given a lot of thought as to how to achieve it. I don’t parent randomly. I’m not an overwhelmingly strict mom, but I don’t hover or coddle either. And my husband and I try to live by our principles and pass that on to the kids. It’s a balancing act.

    Your dad sounds like no slouch himself. I totally agree with this: “it would be insulting a person’s intelligence and self-respect if they had to be awarded a prize for doing what they were supposed to do in the first place! The reward is the skill gained, the self-discipline acquired.” What’s better for a kid to have? The sense of confidence that comes from a job well done or some piece of crap prize?

  • http://www.geekandjock.com/blogs/thegeek/5-relationship-tips-you-can-learn-charlie-sheen Martin Cooney @GeekandJock

    The entire dating scene and self esteem is out of whack these days.

    As a guy (and when I was dating for the first time after a divorce), I was continually reading about how to ‘Game’ women, using all sorts of false dating techniques. It was so NOT me that I decided to give up on all that rubbish. I’m sure other guys found results but those results are founded in lies.

    That said, these techniques create an illusion within both men and women that dating is a game. It shouldn’t be.

    It’s a pity TV Shows don’t cater for responsible and sensible dating – I’m sure they could. We could all come down to earth and reality and it’s meant to be in a transparent relationship.

  • Kirk

    Being nice is not only counterproductive, it’s becoming deadly.
    Today, a chick jammed her lit cigarette into my arm after I politely asked her for directions to a local music venue. She was with a friend, and they both laughed after the incident. It left a pretty nasty mark…

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      Today, a chick jammed her lit cigarette into my arm after I politely asked her for directions to a local music venue. She was with a friend, and they both laughed after the incident. It left a pretty nasty mark…

      WTF? That’s assault, surely!

  • http://4stargazer.wordpress.com/ Anacaona

    He acts way closer to the nice guys than to the jerks. He didn’t play games, called me and texted me all the time, and he is really cuddly and touchy-feeling. How other girls don’t appreciate this is truly beyond my comprehension.

    This oh so much. The fact that my husband never ever let me down when he promised something was like lube to my loins.
    Do you like gambling? The whole rejection makes you want something more sounds a lot like some studies they did in gamblers that showed that they actually prefer losing because it gives them an excuse to keep playing. I don’t like gambling and feeling rejected is akin to medieval torture so no I never felt compelled or more attracted to a guy that rejected me and trust me this weren’t one or two but . I pretty much went back to my tiny corner pink side of the mind and prayed that a good man will finally like me back one day.

  • http://4stargazer.wordpress.com/ Anacaona

    Full disclosure: I once washed my husband’s retainer for him because he hadn’t cleaned it in forever. I also don’t mind his morning breath. I kiss him all the time while he still has his retainer in, so maybe I’m just as “beta” as the sappy fella.

    Pfftt not disgusting enough I used to keep my husband’s dirty underwear from visit to visit to my country I did eventually washed them but I loved to sleep with them under my pillow were I could smell it and pretend he was still sleeping with me…do I win? :D

  • Sassy6519

    @ Anacaona

    Pfftt not disgusting enough I used to keep my husband’s dirty underwear from visit to visit to my country I did eventually washed them but I loved to sleep with them under my pillow were I could smell it and pretend he was still sleeping with me…do I win? :D

    Um…………

    That’s really gross, but I can appreciate the dedication.

    The levels of dedication from some of the women on here never ceases to astound me.

  • http://4stargazer.wordpress.com/ Anacaona

    That’s really gross, but I can appreciate the dedication.

    Heh thanks! :D

    J, that’s interesting. I was raised by criticism and a mentality of scarcity. I was constantly compared to nicer kids, prettier girls, more academically accomplished students, etc. Maybe that helped me more than I knew.

    You remember my sociopath of a brother? Guess what kid got all the praise for every single little thing he did even though he wouldn’t obey or do any of the rest of his obligations (that in my house were pretty much don’t get in trouble and study) I’m not going to be a praising mother for the sake of praising for sure.

  • Herb

    @reformedmalenerd

    If being alpha in her company = simply taking confident initiatives in everyday life, then being kind and masterful at the same time is doable. If being masterful towards her requires going nuclear and treating her like garbage, there is no room for niceness, mathematically speaking.

    You might be on to something. My most successful relationships have been with women who started college but didn’t finish. I’ve always called this smart but not bitchy.

    Perhaps you’re closer in they are just more feminine and thus my beta self can be more manly relative to them than I can career girl types.

    As for James, after watching my mother sit in a hospital for a couple of days as my father slipped away I want to be mad. I want to say that she doesn’t deserve a male who balances both sets of traits and deserves every P&D she gets from some douchebag asshole.

    But I can’t. I can only be sad that a man like my father couldn’t find a woman like my mother, who will love and respect him for nearly 50 years up to the very end.

  • Herb

    @Ana

    I don’t like gambling and feeling rejected is akin to medieval torture so no I never felt compelled or more attracted to a guy that rejected me and trust me this weren’t one or two but . I pretty much went back to my tiny corner pink side of the mind and prayed that a good man will finally like me back one day.

    Oh, you just gave up and you should keep getting rejected until approaching and getting rejected gets easy. ;)

  • http://4stargazer.wordpress.com/ Anacaona

    Oh, you just gave up and you should keep getting rejected until approaching and getting rejected gets easy.

    Heh do you remember that I’m a girl? :p

    I wanted to share something this is something a commenter called Dreadpiratkevin said at Athol’s:

    When I look at my wife, I don’t just see her as she is now -40ish, chubby and slightly graying, I see the beautiful young woman I feel madly in love with 25 years ago, I see the woman who has borne me 5 incredible children and then given her life over to staying home and not only raising them, but homeschooling them into amazing people. I see the woman who stood by be through job losses and business failures, home foreclosures and near bankruptcy. I see the first person I want to tell about the successes in my life and the last person I want to hurt. I see the only person whose companionship will make growing old tolerable. Compared to that a little chub is nothing, and no other woman, no matter her sex rank is of any interest to me.

    THIS is what women should be having as a life goal, instead of hot Alpha’s whose major trait is that they turn them on. This is the sort of things that if we as society recognize as “status” would fix all the problems of the SMV and hypergamy faster than PUA’s, Marriage strike, MGTOW or artificial wombs, surrogacy would…this is the real deal, YMMV.

  • Herb

    @Ana

    THIS is what women should be having as a life goal, instead of hot Alpha’s whose major trait is that they turn them on. This is the sort of things that if we as society recognize as “status” would fix all the problems of the SMV and hypergamy faster than PUA’s, Marriage strike, MGTOW or artificial wombs, surrogacy would…this is the real deal, YMMV.

    I know it’s the real deal. I was a witness to some very powerful expression of it the past week.

    I just think almost no one cares about it anymore and of those who did all but a tiny handful pair off early and leave the rest of us to rot.

  • http://4stargazer.wordpress.com/ Anacaona

    I know it’s the real deal. I was a witness to some very powerful expression of it the past week.
    Care to share?

    I just think almost no one cares about it anymore and of those who did all but a tiny handful pair off early and leave the rest of us to rot.
    When the things I read here make me panic about the future of my unborn child (ren) my husband reminds me that the majority of people that made it, are out there too busy living their lives and fighting the good fight to post the “sad history of their lives” on the internet. So I can see that, YMMV.

  • Lavazza

    J: “I think both fulsome praise and unremitting comparison and criticism can be bad for kids. It’s always good to praise effort because effort is something a kid can control and kids need to see the link between effort and success. It’s less effective to praise things that are luck of the draw like looks, IQ, and talents. Praise also has to be realistic and precise. “That was the best piano solo ever!” is crap. The kid knows it’s not true. “You hit a couple of wrong notes, but you covered nicely.” or “Your tempo and dynamics were spot on.” are good examples of realistic praise. “You should have practiced the left hand part more.” is valid feedback. “Johnny is a better musician than you are.”–not so much.”

    Some reason, and I tend to agree, that the brain processes everything as positives, so that is better to say what someone should do than what they should not do. So the best criticism is to say what someone is doing right and also what that person should do in the areas when that person is making mistakes, without mentioning the mistakes and saying “don’t make mistakes”.

    But what is most important is leading by example. The example set by the leader/teacher/parent gives a clear limitation of what the subordinate/student/child can learn. A good leader/teacher/parent acknowledges and rejoices when a subordinate/student/child goes beyond what they have taught by example, and has a very clear and self critical idea of the example he/she is giving. “Do as I say, not as I do” has never yielded any good results.

  • Lavazza

    My Indian teacher often tells the story of some parents coming to their guru to ask him to help their child get rid of his addiction to candy. The guru tells them to come again in three months. After three months the guru instructs the child and the parents ask why he could not have done that three months ago. The guru responds “Three months ago I was also addicted to candy and I had to learn how to get rid of the addicition to be able to teach how”.

  • Lavazza

    If you need to teach something that has always come easy to you it might be necessary to send a struggling student to another teacher who has had it much more difficult to learn that skill, but who now has learned it fully.

  • Emily

    Hope, Jackie,

    Thank you for your advice and support. :)

    I actually have a job interview today. At this point I’ve gone to quite a few interviews, so I don’t want to get my hopes up. But you never know… ;)

  • Dogsquat

    Herb, I hope you and yours are doing as well as they can be.

    By being there, you gave your dad a great gift.

  • Just1X

    The Nice Guy who tried game, his results and the biggest problem encountered

    I’m Nice Men – 11/28/10
    http://www.the1585.com/imnicemen.htm

    Very fun post with meaning, it just keeps getting better as you read thorugh it. And it’s waaay relevant to the discussion here.

    A taster, or two

    “But for the last three weeks, I’ve been regularly seeing a girl that I really like. And—for the first time in any relationship—I have from the very beginning avoided ever saying insecure things in front of her, right down to never asking her advice about what I should wear or what kind of haircut I should get. I want to ask her all those things. Hell, I want to ask her every five minutes whether she really likes me and then not believe her when she says yes. I just don’t do it. Instead, I slap her on the ass and then lean against something. ”

    “Now you’re probably thinking that it didn’t work. You’re expecting me to say that I refrained from saying insecure stuff, but girls didn’t like me any better—either because they could still magically tell I was insecure somehow, or because it turns out that girls look deeper than that and aren’t really as shallow as I was making them out to be. But that’s not it either. Girls—and, to be fair, people in general—really are as shallow as I was making them out to be, and the simple practice of never saying insecure things worked amazingly well. To be perfectly honest, I had sex with more women this past September and October than during any year-long stretch of my life before, or all four years of college. And I didn’t even go out that much. So without becoming boorish here, let it be established that never saying insecure things really does work, and is incredibly easy. Those things are not the problem.

    The problem is that, as far as I can tell, I no longer” – go read the post! He does say what the problem is and it’s hilarious

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Just1X

      I just spent half an hour at 1585. What a smart guy and great writer! I wonder what he’s up to now. And you’re right, his essay on insecurity is hilarious.

  • Jon

    That’s a good question. Edge seems like nothing more than a euphemism for antisocial behavior. The opposite of agreeable or amiable. How odd to list that as a requirement for attraction.

    I wouldn’t say that’s necessarily true. For example, I was the nice looking, clean cut, boy next door type most of my life.

    When it became clear I needed more of an edge, I buzzed my hair, grew a short beard/heavy stubble (think Jason Statham), started leaving two buttons undone on my shirts instead of just the top, bought jeans that were both darker and tighter than I was accustomed too, a leather jacket and stopped smiling so much.

    Hmm…now that I think about it, maybe you’re right, and I am trying to be less agreeable and amiable…. Either way, there’s no way I’m going back to khakis and polo shirts.

  • Richard Aubrey

    “”When it became clear I needed more of an edge, I buzzed my hair, grew a short beard/heavy stubble (think Jason Statham), started leaving two buttons undone on my shirts instead of just the top, bought jeans that were both darker and tighter than I was accustomed too, a leather jacket and stopped smiling so much.””

    Jon. That seems to be one of the possible uniforms for guys who might be verging in the direction of at least unamiability or anti-social behavior. Did it work, or did you have to actually act it out? Like, say, spitting on the sidewalk?
    I hope you answer that question honestly, but I’ll be honest. If you say it worked, I’ll have to take to my bed with a bottle of cheap port and try to ignore the implications.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      “”When it became clear I needed more of an edge, I buzzed my hair, grew a short beard/heavy stubble (think Jason Statham), started leaving two buttons undone on my shirts instead of just the top, bought jeans that were both darker and tighter than I was accustomed too, a leather jacket and stopped smiling so much.””

      Not saying you were necessarily going for the hipster look, but it occurs to me that this is exactly what hipsterism offers – a different uniform that is edgy.

  • Lokland

    @Jon

    I do much the same. Hair slightly different.
    Its amazing what a leather jacket can do.

  • Wudang

    “she has total self-confidence and no self-worth.”

    HA! I have been arguing about this with several people over the last year. In my opinion when children today are rewarded and praised constantly even when they don`t really achieve anything and even when they fail at something it fucks them up in several ways. One message they are left with is that rewards and success should be/is easy. Another message is that it is necessary to perceive yourself as having done good to feel good about yourself. There is a difference between self love/self worth/self aceptance which can and should be unconditional and confidence/belief in your abilities and perception of your qualitites. Even though you are not talented in any way or amazing in any way it is still perfectly possible to love yourself unconditonally and feel like a worthwhile person. But that is not the message that IN REALITY is being given to children and people. Rather the message is that you should always love yourself because you are awesome, amazing and can acomplish anything you set your mind to which is actually the oposite of self love since it presuposes that you have to be a truly extraordinary exceptionally talented and great person in order to deserve to love yourself. That is what you are saying when you say love yourself and feel great about yourself BECAUSE you are so amazing and wonderfull. THe healthy message is rather that slef love/self aceptance should come easy and be unconditional but slef confidence and belief in your amazingness needs to be proved and the bar for that kind of feedback is high. Although we are not really aware of it what we are actually teaching children in teh west is not unconditional love but unconditonal positive evaluation of any level of crappy achievement. That is why so many utterly talentless people sign up for pop Idol and similar shows. I have read several articles recently where researchers are tying what I describe her to the culture of narcisim and a lot of the icnrease in mental problems in the last decades.

    In psychology the term depressive realism describes the strange phenomenon that clinically depressed peple have a more realistic view of themselves and the world than emotionally healthy people. For a long time this made psychologists believe assesing yourself too highghly was a requirement to feel good about yourself. THen they studied asian people and found they were just as realistic as depressed westerners but that they deed not feel bad as all. They just did not require an exagerated self image to feel they deserved to feel worthy.

    To get back to the coment I qouted I think a lot of the bad behaviors and patterns in the SMP can be tied to this phenomenon. People that on the one hand feel they are or at least should be amazing (and so entitled to great thigns and partners) yet still not worthy of anything good (at least not unless they can keep up the required amazingness).

    The woman who wrote about the jerk and the nice guy said she was holding out for someone with the right mix. For certain there are guys with the right mix (MikeC, Dogsquat, Athol, and I am sure men you know as well) and certainly such men do very well and are apreceated a lot by women for having this mix down very well but I think there are a lot of women who somehow are unable to really apreceate the right mix. My strong perception is that a lot of women subconciously put you in one of the two categories and somehow can`t seem to relate to a great mix. To me it doesn`t sound right if you have spent 10 yers dating guys that are clearly too much of a jerk or clearly too much of a nice guy and no one who had anything close to a decent mix going on. Since among the men I have known in my life there are quite a few guys with a decent mix going on I don`t buy that it is impossible to find such a man. Sure I realize they are not in overabundance and that they might not be easy to land but if a woman has 10 years of dating many, many men and she hasen`t even dated one such guy something is wrong with HER. If she had dated one or a few and they had rejected her or she knew several but they did not show interest in her THAT would sound credbile. But not even finding any sounds like utter bullshit to me as I see lesser alphas and greater betas with decent behavior and decent hearts regularly. So while I certainly agree there is a nice guy epidemic and probably somewhat of a lesser jerk epidemic there is also an epidiemic of women who are UNABLE to date anything other than jerks or nice guys. Probably there is something in the culture that at the same time pushes guys to become either nice guys or jerks and women to become unable to date either one or the other. This leaves a smaller but still fairly substantial number of men who have a decent mix (not necessarily an ideal mix, a man with a 9-10 alpha score and great beta qualitites truly is rare, but a 6-8 alpha with good enough although not perfect beta qualities certainly are something one encounters) and a small but still fairly substantial number of women who are able to be drawn to the good mix.

    A well known poster and teacher at a PUA forum (a natural that later learnt about game) wrote something that ties in well with this. He said that over the last couple of decades he had noticed and acelerating shift in european countries where the richer a country got the less he was able to attract women with his conventional classical masculinity game and the more he had to fake imply some sort of badboysih self destructiveness on his own part in order to hook girls. He said it was like they were pushing him to be moved into either a nice guy or a badboy category but had no slot left for a real classical MAN.

    To go back to the original point about too high confidence and too little self worth I think there is a connection between these too phenomenon. I am not sure exactly how it works but it could be something along the lines of unrealstic view of yourself and what you deserve leads to women being drawn to unrealstic displays of alpha which over the top badboy game is and on some level also feeling they deserve unrealisticly subservient beta behavior and worship and so dating guys who displays this yet being turned of by them. Since there is also fundamental lack of self worth there is little or no mechanism to stop attraction to ashole behavior or to set of warning signs that the ashole behavior is actually a sign of not perceiving yourself as being securely placed on top of a social hierarchy. The lack of self worth also makes it difficult or impossible to be attracted to a guy with a healthy and good balance of alpha and beta. The over confidence and entitlement also makes it difficult to view the alpha the guys with the right mix has as enough and to view their beta qualitites as enough.

    I think the same message of unrealistic confidence and low self worth helps influence guys to produce the split between nice guys and jerks as well but I am less sure exactly how because feminism plays into it. Certainly overinflated ego and low self worth tends to produce jerks and low self worth produce betas. Without feminism such a culture might have produced mostly an overabundance of jerks but because of feminism what happens is primarily nice guys are produced in over abundance but some real jerks are made as well and they are able to supply the whole female market in a casual half committed way.

  • Ramble

    I see your point, sir. How about puce pill? Puce = like the purple you see in a bruise. Off putting, for sure. (And alliterative :) )

    I still prefer a greenish brown mesh, but, Puce will do.

  • Wudang

    I wanted to underline one point. When your “self confidence” or belief in your own amazingngess or your belief in your need to be amazing is too high and your self worth is low anything less than extreme or total alpha is perceived as too little and anything less than extreme or total beta worhsip is perceived as too little. Thus a woman with such a split is unable to date anything other than jerks or nice guys.

  • deti

    Ana 87:

    “When I look at my wife, I don’t just see her as she is now -40ish, chubby and slightly graying, I see the beautiful young woman I feel madly in love with 25 years ago”

    It’s great for the guy to feel this way and believe it. He just can’t demonstrate it outwardly. He can’t gush effusively about how great she is to her and the world. The minute he does that, she reacts like Marnie: She recoils at his touch, can’t stand sex with him, gets turned off and creeped out.

    It never ceases to amaze how women respond to the exact opposite of what men’s mothers teach them.

    Be nice to her, and she hates you.
    Be aloof, and she chases you.
    Give her the world and she hates you for it.
    Give her a little neg, and she loves you.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      “When I look at my wife, I don’t just see her as she is now -40ish, chubby and slightly graying, I see the beautiful young woman I feel madly in love with 25 years ago”

      It’s great for the guy to feel this way and believe it. He just can’t demonstrate it outwardly. He can’t gush effusively about how great she is to her and the world. The minute he does that, she reacts like Marnie: She recoils at his touch, can’t stand sex with him, gets turned off and creeped out.

      I don’t think a man’s feeling this way, or even expressing it directly to his wife, amounts to gushing effusively. This is the kind of statement that makes me feel loved and appreciated by my husband. When we go out and he tells me he is proud to have me on his arm, I am pleased that I have not “lost it” in his eyes. Such a statement would never turn me off – in fact, it makes me feel very positive toward my husband.

      In the show, Charlie is gushing effusively, all the time, and it is cringe-inducing. He’s always blowing kisses, looking to connect, he even walks in on her when she’s in the bathroom with the door closed. When Hannah remarks to Marnie that he has a vagina, she’s saying what every female (and probably male too) viewer is thinking.

  • Ramble

    Lena Dunham is not being financed to live a life she hates

    Well, mostly the character, but..

    Lena grew up in Manhattan, which, in itself, often involves lots of money.

    She made her first “self-financed” film when she was, like, 23. I know a few people in the industry and I have never heard of someone making an indie when they were 23.

    Now, she is getting traditional support for making this series, but her experiences are, basically, based on her living a life in Manhattan.

    But, again, the question is really for the characters.

    I don’t think that is a question she would ever ask herself, or something she would consider for a nanosecond.

    I know.

    It’s a huge part of her identity. It’s like suggesting that Woody Allen might have been happy in Poughkeepsie.

    Except that there is one huge difference. Lena is not happy. If she was, she would not be focused on making a movie Tiny Furniture or this current series. Whereas, Woody Allen seems quite content having sex with his step-daughter.

    My guess is that she’d rather be single in NYC than married in Fargo.

    And here we are.

    Dunham is poking fun at her own generation here. She’s commenting on the job market, but more importantly she portrays the selfish complacency of Hannah. The episode is largely dedicated to figuring out how to get back on her parents’ payroll – she’s very manipulative and it’s funny.

    One of the reasons I like the show is that Dunham has a real ability to laugh at herself. Much of the joke is at her expense.

    Yes, she is more self-aware than most girls her age (and many older), but still unwilling to give up the entitlement.

    I am not trying to kill the girl, here. I heard her interview with Terry Gross on Fresh Air and I can really appreciate her attitude. But, it is not hard to see that very girls who have the opportunity to live big city lives will pass on that to live in a place that is affordable, stable, and likely to have a nice ratio of upstanding young men.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Ramble

      Except that there is one huge difference. Lena is not happy. If she was, she would not be focused on making a movie Tiny Furniture or this current series. Whereas, Woody Allen seems quite content having sex with his step-daughter.

      Did she say she was not happy? I get the impression she’s having a blast. Life couldn’t be better. Yes, she might be angsty or even suffer from depression – just like Woody Allen always has.

      What Dunham has achieved, in my view, is successfully capture the zeitgeist of Gen Y. She’s a member, but she’s also an observer. She has a fully formed identity, and like I said, NY is obviously a big part of that.

      I’m a city person. I’d probably choose to be single in a big city over moving to the boondocks. I also think it’s a myth that rural environments or small towns have nothing but upstanding young men, or even more upstanding young men than any other place. Or at least I’ve never seen any evidence for that claim.

  • Richard Aubrey

    A leather jacket works wonders…..
    Whichever moron put women on a pedestal must have had some other planet in mind.

  • Wudang

    Another point I want to underline is that I don`t think you need to become a total narcisist with a truly grandiose self image and utter lack of self worth. It is enough to have the basics of too much belief in ones own amazingenss and too little self worth although not zero self worth to have the basic psyhcology to get the dating pattern I described. In more moderate form it probably leads to dating guys that are jerks, just not Tucker Max level jerks and dating nice guys just not beta of the month nice guys.

    Also, the standard westerners self image has become so out of whack that the people who lived in 1920 or other cultures that still are not so influenced by the trends I talked about really were/are A LOT more mentally healthy and balanced than people who are considered healthy and balanced in the west today. So I think we are more than fucked up enough to have this dynamic play out across large segments of the poppulation not just those who come close to clinical diagnosies of narcisism.

  • Maggie

    @Odds

    “Women aren’t rejecting nice guys because they feel like they don’t deserve to be treated well, it’s because they value a guy can afford to treat them poorly more than they value good treatment.”

    Why would these young women value being treated poorly? I don’t get it.

    I finally watched the show. Most likely these girls are from upper-middle class intact families and were well educated. They weren’t raised by a crack-head mom and no dad in poverty. They are not “Precious”. Even Hannah’s parents complain about being just “Professors” as if it were some low-prestige, low-paying job.

    Also, why are these women so eager to have sex that they don’t enjoy? Do they have any idea how great sex can be in a loving relationship?

    Actually the show is pretty funny and far more realistic than SATC.

  • deti

    So, is “Girls” art imitating life?

    “Girls” validates (or at least illustrates) most of Roissy’s 16 commandments:

    6. Keep her guessing
    9. Connect with her emotions
    11. Be irrationally self-confident
    13. Err on the side of too much boldness, rather than too little
    15. Maintain your state control
    16. Never be afraid to lose her

  • Ramble

    Not saying you were necessarily going for the hipster look, but it occurs to me that this is exactly what hipsterism offers – a different uniform that is edgy.

    I understand what you are trying to say here, but, I disagree.

    The big poofy beards, the tight pants, the skinny ties, and all of this on some guy who weighs 130lbs soaking wet.

    These guys rarely get the leather Mechanic boots, with the motorcycle jacket.

    I wouldn’t say that they are trying to be edgy.

    They are much more likely to wear a flannel shirt. They are tiny, little men who are playing with styles that attempt to masculinize themselves. But, since they are so goddamn ironic and “hip”, they can’t help but make it “different”.

    And, holy shit are none of them funny!

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Ramble

      You’re talking about the hipster caricature, as profiled by that site Look at this Fucking Hipster. But a lot of guys in art or music are pretty hipster. I can tell you that all the cashiers at my local Whole Foods are hipsters, both male and female. The guys are adorable with their tats, their ear gauges and their beards. Some of them rock that look very successfully. I’m always amused when I hear them talking about the Red Sox or the Pats – I expect everything they say to be ironic.

  • Ramble

    This is the sort of things that if we as society recognize as “status” would fix all the problems of the SMV and hypergamy faster than PUA’s, Marriage strike, MGTOW or artificial wombs, surrogacy would…this is the real deal, YMMV.

    Anacoana,
    As (almost) always, I don’t disagree with you.

    However, there are some important takeaways from this that should be highlighted:
    – He married her while she was in her physical prime
    – She started bearing his children before her fertility started to decline *
    – She raised his children
    – (Homeschooling) She REALLY fucking raised them
    – For whatever financial problems they had, he was the bread winner.

    It is much easier for men to be the (masculine) bread winner when most of the adult women are raising children and not competing with the various husbands for the prime jobs. Combine this with the idea that many women would be happiest sending kids off to school, working something part-time for, say, 4 hours in the meantime (at home, or someplace they commute to), working with other women in a low stress job and then greeting their children when they come home, you can see how a good portion of the modern culture is not prepared to satisfy that.

    =====================

    * There is, apparently, some evidence that if a woman has her first child before, say, 27, that any children she is likely to bear after 30 (but before 40) are likely to be healthier than women who start having children after, say, 30.

  • Just1X

    @Wudang #114

    I swear to you that you need to read the 1585 link that I gave. It makes your point regarding self belief in SPADES.

    http://www.the1585.com/imnicemen.htm
    (same link as before)

    @Susan
    you’re welcome. I came across his site ages ago (pre avfm, ‘D’ and HUS), he really can write (I’d just forgotten about him as his posting rate was low and dropping at the time). Perhaps you two can feed off each other as he seems very relevant to HUS, just from the switched on nice guy side.

  • Richard Aubrey

    Thinking back over forty years to college: I dealt with women in at least two separate categories.
    One was the women I dated. I met them, or I followed up on blind dates, or whatever.
    And, for reasons I cannot figure, never the twain shall meet, I dealt with women I worked with in lab classes, campus clubs or activities, or part-time employment, or field projects. Never attempted to date them. Never thought about it. Go figure.
    Looking back, some of what I thought of as “aww, that was nice of her” was probably women from the second category trying to get my attention. IOW, not chasing them worked. YOU DON’T HAVE TO DO ANYTHING. IN FACT, THE LESS THE BETTER. I don’t think many of us guys thought that.
    I don’t recall anybody preaching that technique back then.
    And if somebody had tried, we’d have been pretty skeptical.

  • Just1X

    @Maggie

    I despair that it appears to work (FWIW), but the PUAs treating women badly are doing so because it sends a subconcious message to the women; “I am better than you, you are lucky that I spend time on you”. It’s termed DHV – Displaying Higher Value.

    DLV, which is what nice guys do when they are nice, sends the opposite signal. The subconcious message received by the woman is “you can do better than me”.

    This is what annoys nice guys when they get a taste of the red-pill:
    a) all my life people told me to be nice – they lied to me.
    b) that’s nuts
    c) and women then have the cheek to ask, “Where have all the nice guys gone?”. They’re there, you just overlook them as lower value and so uninteresting. Or, they’ve learnt some game and stopped being suckers.

    The BIG problem is that only women can fix this. STOP rewarding arseholes! They are only giving you what you respond to, it’s largely your fault.

    NAWALT, values of stocks and shares may go up or down, consult a physician if you have these symptoms, YMMV etc

  • Ramble

    Did she say she was not happy? I get the impression she’s having a blast. Life couldn’t be better. Yes, she might be angsty or even suffer from depression – just like Woody Allen always has.

    OK. I didn’t think of it that way. I got the idea that these shows/movies were her attempt at dealing with her unsatisfying (and quirky, and fun, and cosmopolitan) life.

    Maybe she is satisfied and she is simply commenting on the dissatisfaction she sees in others.

    I’m a city person. I’d probably choose to be single in a big city over moving to the boondocks.

    So you would stay in your loft in Philadelphia (after your time at Penn) than follow (future) Mr. HUS to Montgomery County?

    I don’t mean chase him there, but, knowing that is where the young men are getting there jobs, you would stay in the city with the fun girls?

    Actually, you can ignore that question, I will make my point in the next paragraph.

    I also think it’s a myth that rural environments or small towns have nothing but upstanding young men, or even more upstanding young men than any other place. Or at least I’ve never seen any evidence for that claim.

    1. You are taking this to the extreme (which I do all the time). City versus boondocks. I actually chose Grand Forks for a reason.

    Places like Massachusetts have been losing middle class people for years. It hasn’t had a complete brain drain like western New York, but so many people get an education in Mass and then leave because there are not enough high end jobs for them.

    North Dakota, on the other hand, has been actively trying to import people. During this economy, they have maintained a very low unemployment rate.

    They also have a low rate of divorce and, for years, the lowest crime rate (they tend to finish in the top2 or 3 every year…for like 50 years).

    And, it almost never got talked about, but…

    When New Orleans had their flood (from the levees breaking), they saw massive rioting and crime.

    When North Dakota had their biggest flood in over 500 years, they saw almost no crime at all. In fact, what they did see, was lots of people coming out to help one another. It was amazing.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Ramble

      I think my attitude can be summed up as “the devil you know….” For most people, a move across the country to a place with no friends and family is a daunting prospect. Yes, there might be good, employed men there, but to make such a change you’d have to be pretty sure you can’t find a good, employed man where you are. And you’d have to put finding a man higher on your list of life priorities than staying in a city you know and love, except for the not having a man part.

      I think most residents of Grand Forks would not even consider a move to NYC, no matter what it offered. Heck, my in-laws couldn’t even get most of their friends to come there for our wedding, because NYC is “the devil’s playground.”

  • Ramble

    You’re talking about the hipster caricature …

    Actually, I am talking about what I would call Hipsters. But, there is a spectrum and I understand what you are talking about.

    The people you mention are definitely hipsterish.

    But, I stand by this: the more “hip” a guy gets, the less funny he is likely to be.

  • Ramble

    For most people, a move across the country to a place with no friends and family is a daunting prospect.

    Oh shit, no, I didn’t mean that. Again, just as I was criticizing you for taking things to the extreme, I was making an extreme comparison between the Upper West Side and the Upper Western US.

    What I was trying to say was this: I have seen tons of girls go out of there way to make sure that they live in the city. It is more expensive, car insurance costs much more (and, outside of Manhattan, a few other choice places, you will likely need a car), parking is a bitch and the social life is much more geared towards casual sex.

    Whereas the burbs is where the guys get their jobs, in general. IT shops, engineering firms and tech in general are in the burbs.

    Silicon Valley is NOT in San Fran, it is in the burbs.

    This is where the “desirable” future husbands are (again, grand generalization).

    Yet, girls, in general, flock to the city. Or, at least, they want to. Now, I live in a large cosmopolitan east coast city, and I love it. But, I can still see the math (for girls).

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    J and Jackie, I was lucky enough to be raised until 10 by a combination of my maternal grandparents, aunts and uncles. My grandparents gave me adoration and love, my aunt was the strict one who showed me work ethic, and one uncle was the fun one while the other uncle was the scary one (he was a police officer). I was naturally smart and good at school, but I never got praise for it at home, only by the parents of other kids. My family was full of smart people already, and I was just a kid, so compared to them my intellect was nothing impressive. They taught me work ethic, obedience and discipline above all else, but I also had lots of love.

    My mother was a strict authortarian parent who yelled at me, criticized me and was verbally abusive toward me. But I had already been mostly shaped by that time, so the only thing that happened was I kept my willpower and work ethic, but got a very low self-esteem and became an outcast. I gained compassion for the downtrodden and other outcasts. My mother’s ways weren’t all bad. She just was the Tiger Mom without any love or affection. I would have much preferred Amy Chua, or the parents who were loving and lenient. I had self-motivation in spades. I just wasn’t motivated by abuse.

    Asian (and other immigrant groups / traditional cultures) parenting style seems brutal, but it usually produces well-behaved people. I wouldn’t go that far personally, but I think setting the rules is a good idea. Nobody ever gave in to my tantrums as a kid, and I learned valuable life lessons early in childhood. I am lucky that my mother was not the only influence on me, because otherwise I could have turned out like one of those Asian kids splattered on the sidewalk by suicide.

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    Anacaona, I had my husband’s underwear and shirt, and I liked to smell them, when we were long-distance. :P

    Ramble, that homemaker ideal doesn’t happen in less developed nations. In China for example, women work and have always worked hard. They couldn’t be afforded the luxury of being with their kids all the time. A lot of kids were like me, raised by retired grandparents and helped out by daycare, kindergarten, school, etc. I was home alone sometimes when I was in elementary school, even with all of the people that lived under one roof.

    My husband says that the same thing is true in Africa, where he was for Peace Corps. Kids often play with each other sans adult supervision. They also contributed to chores, cleaned classrooms, and carried water buckets, much as we did in China if not more. The ideal childrearing scenario that is promoted in the West just doesn’t happen in poorer nations.

  • Ramble

    Ramble, that homemaker ideal doesn’t happen in less developed nations.

    Right, but we are. and we could likely afford to have a fairly, and reasonably, “ideal” lives.

  • Cooper

    Susan, do you see why I have generalized that girs my age do not commitment?

    I have flocked to the big city, which goes against the generalization that Ramble made regarding rural being where the “‘desirable’ future husbands” are.

    If you were to imagine talk of exclusivity, or anything commitment-oriented would you see it coming from a Adam, or a Charlie?

    Do you think Adam even considers his relationship with Hannah as exclusive?
    I think not, which is part of Hannahs’ attraction. She likes him cause he “can afford to treat [her] poorly.”

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Cooper

      Do you think Adam even considers his relationship with Hannah as exclusive?
      I think not, which is part of Hannahs’ attraction. She likes him cause he “can afford to treat [her] poorly.”

      That’s an interesting question. They’re definitely not exclusive, they’re just f*ckbuddies, apparently. My guess is that Hannah is looking for love, albeit in the wrong place. She wants a guy who has a dick, not a vagina, which is how she describes Charlie. But I don’t think she even likes Adam. He’s not very likable – how could she? He’s just a man who gives her something – not love, not even like, but validation of some sort, the halfhearted effort of finding her sexually attractive enough to have sex with her on occasion.

      Marnie is also looking for love and commitment. The women have “chosen” guys at extreme ends of the spectrum. They both want more of what the other has, but not too much of it. It’s the Goldilocks dilemma. The asshole/wimp bifurcation in the male population is new, an unintended consequence of the Sexual Revolution.

      The good news is that the more than women recognize that there’s no one occupying the middle ground, we can at least begin to discuss ways of addressing that. It’s going to take a long time, though. Your generation doesn’t have that much time, you need to select women very carefully and make sure you have your own shit together.

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    Ramble, the subtext of what I was saying is that the “ideal” childrearing might actually produce less productive generations of people. The fact that kids from immigrant cultures were subject to hardships means that they work harder.

    Both my husband and I were raised by full-time working mothers and went to daycare. We didn’t turn out delinquent or devoid of empathy. His mother worked hard and saved up so he could go to private school, which in the end shaped his personality and background quite a bit.

    Very few Asians homeschool their kids, so I suppose that is another cultural difference.

  • Zach

    @SW 95

    Too many posts to read, but thought I’d give an example of this. A few months ago (Jan I think) I was out with my gf and some of her friends from college. I was being amiable and nice with them, and she asked me to recommend a bar nearby where we could all go. I did, and we started walking there. We were in the West Village, which I know quite well (I live there), but is hard to find your way around if you don’t. None of her friends had been living in NYC for more than a few months, and a couple were even visiting from out of town. Point being, none of them had any idea how to get around the area we were in. After a few blocks of walking, this one guy starts making douchey remarks about my being lost and asking why they’re following me. I was trying to be nice, so I didn’t say anything for a while. Eventually I got us to the bar, turned around, and said to him “Well I guess I knew where I was going after all a**hole.” We went inside, and my gf and I got in line for the bathroom. He was right behind me, and started making more dickish remarks. At this point I’d lost any will to be nice, so started ripping into him too. As I walked away to the bathroom, I heard him say to my GF behind me “I don’t know what you’re doing with this asshole, you shouldn’t be dating him”. After I finished peeing (I really had to go), I came out of the bathroom, grabbed him, threw him against the wall and told him if he ever said something like that again I’d kill him. I obviously got kicked out of the bar, but she came out and met me and we went home. She was more all over me that night than almost any other night we’ve been dating.

    Point is, you don’t need to be a douchebag to display dominance or edge. I was perfectly nice to the other guys/girls, all of whom I got on well with. But you have to stand up for yourself and not take any shit. I don’t take any from her (“you want water? you know where the glasses are”), and I don’t take any from other people. It’s really that simple. Otherwise I’m a pretty nice, sociable person. And you don’t have to do what I did all the time. A few displays like that go a looong way.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Zach

      Point is, you don’t need to be a douchebag to display dominance or edge. I was perfectly nice to the other guys/girls, all of whom I got on well with. But you have to stand up for yourself and not take any shit. I don’t take any from her (“you want water? you know where the glasses are”), and I don’t take any from other people. It’s really that simple. Otherwise I’m a pretty nice, sociable person. And you don’t have to do what I did all the time. A few displays like that go a looong way.

      Seriously, you got my attention with that story. Yup, that’s pretty damned attractive to women.

      I guess I don’t know what edge really is. You showed an edge that night, for sure, but I don’t think it makes you “edgy.” I always thought it meant a demeanor that’s sarcastic, snide, rude, etc. When I hear a woman saying she likes edgy guys, I think she really just wants to be treated badly. It’s like the gf of the violent convict saying she likes his “energy.”

  • Herb

    @Ana #89

    I know it’s the real deal. I was a witness to some very powerful expression of it the past week.
    Care to share?

    My father passed yesterday and the last week, especially the last two days, were very rough but my mother was at his side, holding him and talking to him and comforting him, even though he was only truly aware a couple of days of it and the last two wasn’t really aware of his surroundings.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Herb

      I’m very sorry to hear about your loss. I can see why you hold your mother up as an example of true love and devotion.

  • Ramble

    Ramble, the subtext of what I was saying is that the “ideal” childrearing might actually produce less productive generations of people.

    And I never meant to imply that what we are seeing today were the product of “ideal” families.

    I am trying to say that the modern setup of females and males competing for the same jobs with each having fairly different interests and desires, in general, is not good.

    However, if you are trying to say something about modern coddled children, you will get no argument from me.

  • Ramble

    Herb, my sympathies.

  • J

    When the things I read here make me panic about the future of my unborn child (ren) my husband reminds me that the majority of people that made it, are out there too busy living their lives and fighting the good fight to post the “sad history of their lives” on the internet.

    Your husband is right. And even if all the negatives were true for the majority of people, it would not necessarily affect your kid. There’s a lot of horrible stuff that goes on at my kids’ high school, for example, that they simply elect not to particpate it. Yeah, they get some crap for that from other kids, but they have also learned how to deal with that stuff from a perspective of–what does the ‘sphere call it?–oh yeah, amused mastery.

    You can’t let the negative stuf get you down. When I worked in adolescent mental health, I saw some really sad things on a daily basis. One of my co-workers once told me that she would never have kids because of what she had seen. I told her I fully intended to have kids. I have two healthy kids; she has a dog.

  • J

    Kirk #80

    That’s insane to burn someone without provocation. Did you call the police?

  • Ramble

    Zach,
    That’s a good story, and, good for you for standing up for yourself and your girl. But, that is more about standing up for what is right than having an “edge”.

    We could probably debate what “edge” means until the cows come home, but it will not be the same as being a stand up man.

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    Herb, I am sorry to hear that. It does sound like your father was loved until his dying breath, and his soul will be resting in peace. I am sorry that you and your mother are going through this though. One thing I have heard during my own mourning that helped me was that the grief of loved ones help the deceased reach their resting place. So do not feel like you have to hide or hold back your grief.

  • J

    Nice posts, Lavazza, particulary regarding teaching by example. When my sons were little, we visited one of my cousins that I see infrequently. She was amazed by my sons good manners and asked how I managed to drill manners into such little kids. When I thought about it, I realized that I had NEVER actually taught them anything. They said please and thank you because DH and I had said it to them.

  • Cooper

    “She wants a guy who has a dick, not a vagina, which is how she describes Charlie.”

    Don’t you think Hannah would group any guy willing to commit as having a vagina?

    The way she adores Adams’ treatment, and Marnie loaths Charlies’ niceness (albiet over-the-top) sends the message to guys to withhold commitment, or any emtional investment (Adam doesn’t seem invested, does he?), to maintain attraction. If she picks up on any willingness to commit, then the guy doesn’t have the “afford to treat [me] poorly” factor.

    You say I “need to select women very carefully,” but if I were to discuss any sort of relationship topic (ie. Where do you see this going? ect.) I’d be catagorized as ‘having a vagina.’

    Do you get any sense that the Adam is screaning Hannah for good character?

  • J

    I felt that too. At one point, she asks him how the production of his play is going and he says something like, “We’re not gonna do it. That guy is a dick.” That’s obviously a huge disappointment but he can’t acknowledge that. He also calls his parents buffoons – he’s clearly an unhappy guy.

    I’m glad to hear I’m not alone. I feel creepy about feeling sympathetic. He’s a really unattractive character. If I had a daughter, I’d want him nowhere near her, but as a mom of boys I just have to feel badly for him because I’m so well aquainted with the sort of suburban a$$holery that produced him and his aimlessness. That weird blend of cockiness, helplessness, conceit and low self-esteem is fostered by parents needing the kid to be their narcissistic supply. These kids feel simultaneously better than everyone and never quite good enough. It’s insufferable and also sad.

  • Maggie

    @Just1X

    “all my life people told me to be nice – they lied to me”

    I don’t think these people lied to you. That’s the way it use to work. It’s been maybe in the past 10 or 15 years that everything has been turned upside down, so many people over 35 are clueless and younger people are mystified.

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    Zach, female attraction is on a spectrum. Your display would have been too much for me. My husband would have likely used a funny remark to defuse that situation, or somehow made the other person look belligerent. He’s a pro with his wit, and beyond that neither of us likes to associate with crappy people. We would have given that person the cold shoulder and left. He would have never gotten physical first, that much I know 100%, and I respect him greatly for it.

    Cooper, you’re more likely to run into that kind of behavior in the big cities. In other parts of the country, that sort of thing still exists to an extent, but it’s more subdued. The good guy would get the girlfriend, but she might lose attraction for him months or years down the road. It certainly would not be immediately upon his bringing up the word “relationship.”

  • J

    It’s great for the guy to feel this way and believe it. He just can’t demonstrate it outwardly. He can’t gush effusively about how great she is to her and the world. The minute he does that, she reacts like Marnie: She recoils at his touch, can’t stand sex with him, gets turned off and creeped out.

    I hate to say NAWALT, NAWALT. And I know that you don’t believe that, but it’s true.

  • J

    I also think it’s a myth that rural environments or small towns have nothing but upstanding young men, or even more upstanding young men than any other place. Or at least I’ve never seen any evidence for that claim.

    There’s a surprising amount of alcohol and drug abuse in rural areas. Social life revolves around drinking because there’s not much else to do.

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    J, by the sounds of it, most women that men go after are a bit desensitized to good behavior, from getting so much male attention since they were young. So from the male perspective, all women (whom they notice/want) ARE like that. Supposedly the 6-8s are more prone to this, because they are seen as more approachable. Also the more extroverted, flirty and sociable women tend to prefer minimal displays of affection.

    Since we were both introverted, nerdy and shy, we actually appreciate it when men are affectionate and demonstrative with emotions. We have the scarcity mentality, whereas the women that men generally notice live in complete abundance. It’s the jerky, aloof behavior that they hardly encounter, so they’re attracted like flies to poop. :P

  • J

    Herb,

    I’m sorry to hear of your father’s passing. It’s hard to lose a parent. Take care of yourself.

  • J

    @Hope

    It was good that there were several adults under one roof to provide a variety of influences on you. I think that one thing we’ve lost, when moving to this model of mom, dad and the kids in their own house, is having other adults to lessen the influence and temper the behavior of parents. I often wonder if my mother would have been less destructive had her mother been around to rein her in. I also wonder if grandparents are better than parents at providing unconditional love. Parents can view kids as a reflection of themselves in a away I don’t think grandparents do. I never knew any of my grandparents, but I think I missed something.

  • Zach

    @Hope

    Not knocking you for liking that sort of guy, but in my eyes (and most other guys) not reacting forcefully to that sort of comment would classify him as a p**sy. That’s a direct challenge to your manhood, and by turning it down, backing off and allowing it to stand, you might as well be screaming at the top of your lungs “Beta! Beta! Beta!”. Good luck keeping 95% of women you’re dating after you’re been so emasculated in front of her.

  • Zach

    To give you an example, I have a couple friends who act very much in the “dark triad” sense with women and attempt to assert dominance with men this way. However, if you ever get in their face, they’ll immediately retract everything they’ve said and crawl off to a corner. There is no better way to shatter a perception of “alpha” than by slinking away from a confrontation. Simply put, I’d say you’re the exception rather than the rule.

  • Lavazza

    Zach: I don’t know if it because of me or my social circle, but I have never had any experience reminding of that situation. I can’t even remember seeing it happen to others or hearing about it. In the industrial city where I grew there would be a fight every night and people would be thrown out by the bouncers, but I never saw it at uni or since.

  • J

    Hope #153

    That’s probably true. If so, it’s sad that beta guys and girls are largely invisible to each other. It seems that the people most likely to appreicate each other, pine after someone else.

    I wonder if it’s personality or HB number that influences which women get approached. I’ve seen your pics; and while I hate to rate people, if 9-10 is model/actress, you are 7-8 (which I would define as being about as nice-looking as real women get) and should have been Miss Popularity if looks are the sole criteria. I would have put my youthful self in the same range. I certainly didn’t have guys crawling all over me then. (Though weirdly, men my age really seem to like me now.)

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    J, I also think multiple adult influences are good for kids. My husband had his mom, dad, stepdad, paternal grandmother, uncle on his dad’s side, and a few cousins who were already adults (his dad is the youngest by 15 years or more). He was generally more mature than other kids his age and could interact well with adults.

    Zach, my husband is well-respected by people who understand him (his IQ is 2SD above the norm). It takes a certain kind of woman to appreciate him, and he was going his own way for a long time because most women did not. I would describe him as a modern Renaissance Man, a “warrior-scholar-poet.” He is trained in multiple martial arts, knife fighting, grew up around guns and has a collection, raised by a Vietnam vet, went mountain climbing and biking, survived near-death episodes, travelled the world, lived in 3rd world conditions, wrote poetry, composed music, is a skilled mathematician and programmer, a charismatic leader when the situation calls for it, and be a follower without issue.

    His manhood is not easily challenged by some idiot at a bar, not that either of us hangs out at bars. He has nothing to “prove,” so if someone provokes him and thinks he’s a “pussy” for not getting his hands dirty, he can shrug it off no big deal. To me that is truly “alpha” mindset. I had dated a guy in the past who was really insecure, submissive and had cuckold fantasies, but acted all tough with other guys and tried to escalate fights. It was ridiculous and, well, declasse. My husband’s frame is real dominance, and unless there’s a real threat, he will be a quiet and self-assured sheepdog instead of a sheep putting on wolf’s clothes.

    I don’t want to knock you or what you did. But telling guys to put their hands on another guy like that is not doing them a service either. Then again, an armed society is a polite society. Gun ownership in Utah is very different than NYC. :P

  • Sassy6519

    Since I’m the person who brought up the idea of being attracted to men with an “edge”, I guess I should offer up my definition of it.

    A man with an edge, to me, is considered very masculine and “rugged”. He has traits about him or participates in certain activities that seem to create the ever elusive “tingle” in women. All of the women I have known have been attracted to some element of “edge” in their men. Some edgy traits or behaviors include:

    -driving a motorcycle (something about this is a definite tingle inducer)

    -Knowing how to fight or specializing in a specific combat art (boxing, muay thai, mixed martial arts.)

    -Playing in a band, or expertise in a traditional band instrument (guitar, bass, drums). Being the lead singer also works.

    -being an athlete, typically in the designated most masculine sports (baseball, football, basketball, hockey, soccer)

    -participating in extreme non-mainstream sports (bmx, snowboarding, skateboarding, etc)

    -having an edgy sense of style or elements on the body. The most common examples would be tattoos and body piercings.

    -being classified as a “lone wolf” or “loner”

    -having a rugged appearance (beard or 5 o’clock shadow, faded or distressed jeans, a motorcycle jacket, etc)

    Most men who are classified as “edgy” typically have one or more of these traits. It’s also not a coincidence that a lot of “bad boys” or “players” have one or more of these elements. I can’t speak for all women, but having at least one of the above traits is a tingle inducing factor.

    One of the few guys that I have ever tingled for on first sight (literally) was a guy that was very handsome who also had a 5 0′ clock shadow, a lip ring, played the drums in a band, and skateboarded. The icing on the cake was that he was genuinely a nice guy.

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    That should have been “can be a follower without issue.”

    J, I think personality is a lot bigger of a factor in popularity than pure looks. I’ve always had more common with the nerds and outcasts and hung out with them. Plus I was literally the youngest in my class, and I tend to look a bit younger on top of that since I’m Asian. I didn’t grow into my looks until my 20s.

    Reminds me of when I had just turned 25, and someone came over to fix my cable modem. I was dressed casually, had my hair pulled back, and I had some breakout pimples. He was like, “Are you in high school? Are your parents here?” I had to explain to him that it was my own apartment, and that I was 25. It was a little embarrassing. My husband laughed when I told him the story.

  • Richard Aubrey

    Sassy.
    So, we have a well-groomed paratrooper whose tat is a parachute and the words “death from above”. No rings, no beard, takes daily showers.
    IOW, the real deal, not a combination of signals.
    How’s that?

  • Scipio Africanus

    I like the show too, but I got annoyed by the too-witty dialogue.

    But thinking it over the last few days, the depiction of these girls is really accurate. That’s really how many/most upper middle class, urban, Ivy/near-Ivy white female 20/early-30-something creatives talk, in terms of substance, style and even accent. You can even just overhear it casually on the streets here in New York.

    Another thing that caught my attention is that since Dunham is not really that pretty (though not ugly at all, but not on the same level of attractiveness as most other actresses, in particular her co-stars here), her character’s dating troubles seem more realistic. Alot of times the the “Hollywood Homely”: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/HollywoodHomely
    actresses aren’t abvle to generate much real drama because I’m looking at the screen like “but she’s hot!”

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Scipio Africanus

      One thing I really like about the show is the use of ordinary looking people. The Brits have always done this, and loved their actors for ability rather than looks, but we Americans would rather watch a good looking, not very talented actor.

      Lena Dunham can look attractive, but no, she’s not a beauty. She’s also overweight. I’ve heard that in other episodes we get to see her naked, fat rolls and all. This woman is really letting it all hang out. I love the way the show starts with her stuffing her mouth full of spaghetti.

      Again, she’s happy to laugh at herself. Also, the guy she’s having sex with isn’t exactly attractive either, which of course doesn’t prevent him from acting like she’s lucky to have sex with him. Also, she often pits herself against a very pretty best friend – and indeed we do see how their lives differ, and how differently they’re treated by men.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Richard Aubrey

    I don’t know what you are asking me.

  • J

    Hope,

    I was two years younger than average in college, though I think I looked more mature. I was one of those women who looks pretty much the same between 14 and 40.

    Still, I wonder what it is that makes nerd boys pursue “alpha” chicks rather than nerd girls.

  • http://areallthegoodnamesgone.blogspot.com Ted D

    “-Playing in a band, or expertise in a traditional band instrument (guitar, bass, drums). Being the lead singer also works.”

    WOOHOO! I have this one! I was worried for a minute there I would come up with zilch. :P

  • Scipio Africanus

    For Susan or anyone else here who can vividly remember a time before 1998 from an adult level:

    Did the cachet of living in Manhattan/Brooklyn (the sexy parts, not the non-gentrified, non-chic parts) increase after the popularity of Sex And The City? Or was it always this sought after?

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    J, I grew up around nerdy guys and had no shortage of them who wanted to get with me. I also got a lot of insight into how many of them think and operate. It’s partially an issue of approachability and perceived ease of socialization. The girls that guys tend to go after are social butterflies. They talk, socialize and flirt with everybody. They often have extended social circles and know a lot of people, both girls and guys. My husband’s first “love,” if you could call it that, was a very extroverted girl who wanted to be an actress and would make impromptu performances right on the sidewalk. That was never me, although among people I am comfortable with, I can talk a lot. That’s usually how the guys got interested in me.

    Also, there’s the stereotype that nerdy girls are frigid, ugly, fat, don’t have a good fashion sense, and are too masculine or too much like the guys. In almost all the video games I see guys saying “any girl who plays this game is fat and ugly.” As with all stereotypes, there is some ring of truth, but it’s a catch-22 because if a girl claims not to be fat or ugly, guys will call her an attention whore, “tits or gtfo,” and “pics or it didn’t happen.” A lot of nerdy females have developed thick skins online because of years of socialization with nerdy males. Many will also develop a more masculine personality to fit in with the guys. I did that for a time, and I would cuss awkwardly. Several people pointed out that I sounded stupid doing it (I have a young voice), so I stopped.

    There is also the issue that the ratio of nerdy girls to nerdy guys is not in the nerdy guys’ favor. A nerdy female “4” could get with a nerdy male “6” because of the difference in population size. The nerdy guy figures he will likely have to look outside the nerdy female pool for a girlfriend, and since the rise of photoshop and obesity (concurrently it seems), nerdy guys don’t want the overweight nerdy girls either. They’d rather compete for a good-looking girl who seems flirty and fun. After all, they have enough nerdy male buddies to fulfill their other needs. Like many other young men, they lust after the mainstream female celebrities, watch a lot of porn, and want the hot girl who has a lot of sex. They’re still guys and have young male libidos, albeit more systematizing types that like to delve deep into technical systems. So it all makes sense to me.

  • Zach

    @ Lavazza

    I’m a bit surprised. I grew up in Manhattan and went to an Ivy college, and while fights absolutely were not common, they certainly were something I saw from time to time. When you’re in a situation with lots of booze, testosterone and women, these things tend to happen (ie frat parties, sometimes bars in the city), no matter how educated or intelligent the people are.

    @Hope

    Let me be clear, I’m not advocating fighting for the sake of fighting. I’ve walked away from guys before. As an example, my brother’s friend once got very drunk, accused me of a slight from years ago that I didn’t remember, and tried repeatedly to goad me into a fight. I just stood there calmly and said there’s no reason to fight. And there wasn’t. In some cases, however, there IS a need to respond. Maybe you just don’t understand how men relate to each other, but trying to undermine a guy’s relationship with his girl is about as direct of a challenge as exists between men. It’s VERY different from some guy wanting to fight you because you accidentally bumped into him at the bar. If I told one of my friends girlfriends that my friend was an asshole and she was wasting her time with him, I’d expect him to fight me. And as I noted above, this generally transcends class, intelligence, etc. Almost every single one of my friends is extremely smart (we mostly went to Penn, Duke, Harvard, etc) and came from at least a moderately privileged background.

  • Richard Aubrey

    Sassy
    You described the characteristics of an attractive, edgy guy. Seemed to me that some of that is pretty cheap. Anybody can go without shaving and you don’t need a testosterone certificate to get a leather jacket.
    Snowboarding and whatnot are interesting. However, the snowboarders’ association does not maintain a corps of embalmers and pay for the funeral in case you wipe out. Hardly worth it, since fatalities are so rare.
    A paratrooper–any Infantryman, but jumpers have more public relations, not like the jarheads, but pretty good–is the real deal. In terms of edgy, rugged, risk-taking. Socially apt, at least in terms of being pretty tight with other paratroopers.
    As Elliott Arnold said in “Rescue”, a jumper doesn’t have to explain himself to anybody, his wife, his girlfriend. He is, by definition, a brave man.
    He need not load up on signals.
    So, my question is how much signals count and whether the real deal is handicapped by not loading up on signals.
    Full disclosure. I got through jump school but I was never thereafter in an Airborne unit, so I don’t qualify as a paratrooper.

  • http://chuckthisblog.wordpress.com Joe

    @J

    Still, I wonder what it is that makes nerd boys pursue “alpha” chicks rather than nerd girls.

    I’m sure this has been discussed before, but can you explain what you mean by “alpha chick?” And, come to think of it, “nerd girl?”

    I have some notion that “alpha chick” is something like the cheer-leader who dated the team quarterback in high school and the select frat-boyz in college. We used to call her the queen bee. Nerd-girl seems to be something like the bookish quiet type who’s a little goth, reads poetry and smokes in high school, and follows up by majoring in Gothe, Nitche and indi music/cinema in college (but I’m guessing about that).

    It’s been a long time, but from my experience neither one of those stereotypes were really very successful with men. The first did get married relatively young, but then got divorced young. The second was always a loner who tended to remain that way.

    The ones who were the most successful with men were the ones in-between, who were pretty studious and/or hard working, but also knew how to enjoy themselves occasionally (and dress the part, too).

  • Cooper

    Re: nerdy girls

    I’d love to know how to identify a nerdy chick.

    To be *completely* honest, when I try to paint a picture in my head of a nerdy girl I can’t without adding physically unattractive. (I’m definitely a nerd, but I also hold physical fitness in high regard, myself included of course – there’s two things I hold to very high standards- my abs and my K/D)

    And when I do manage to paint the geeky look onto a good-looking one, I feel like I’ve illustrated a Liger. (a hybrid between a lion, and a tiger)

    And none-the-less, would I know where to find such a rare specimen.

  • Ramble

    Did the cachet of living in Manhattan/Brooklyn (the sexy parts, not the non-gentrified, non-chic parts) increase after the popularity of Sex And The City? Or was it always this sought after?

    Manhattan was a really expensive place to live before SATC and was really expensive after as well. Basically, other than the lowlights of the Stagflation 70’s, Manhattan, and cities like it, have been fairly popular for a long time.

  • http://4stargazer.wordpress.com/ Anacaona

    For most people, a move across the country to a place with no friends and family is a daunting prospect. Yes, there might be good, employed men there, but to make such a change you’d have to be pretty sure you can’t find a good, employed man where you are. And you’d have to put finding a man higher on your list of life priorities than staying in a city you know and love, except for the not having a man part.

    Mmm that paragraph sounds familiar somehow. Odd that :p

    Anacaona, I had my husband’s underwear and shirt, and I liked to smell them, when we were long-distance.

    Heh maybe there is a correlation between the grossness of the woman and the pregnancy rate. :P

    The ideal childrearing scenario that is promoted in the West just doesn’t happen in poorer nations.

    So very true might mother stayed at home till the youngest was around 4, but she used to produce money selling baked goods, doing raffles and all sorts of small businesses at home and we all helped the best we could so yeah is a myth that poor women get to stay at home and look after the kids only in poor countries all our female neighbors added income to the house somehow.

    One of my co-workers once told me that she would never have kids because of what she had seen. I told her I fully intended to have kids. I have two healthy kids; she has a dog.

    I did had a stage like that when I was on my own version of going my own way but once I realized I was making this choices out of fear I decided to get brave and do my darn best to get everything I wanted. I know you hate it but one of my favorite parts of The Red Tent was when Dinah was telling her cousin that she wanted to have many children and when she lists all the bad things that could happen she just says: “Midwives are not afraid of life”. It was one of those moments when an writer tell with words with you had been feeling for the longest time I’m not afraid of life, YMMV.

    Parents can view kids as a reflection of themselves in a away I don’t think grandparents do.

    Being a grandparent is more relaxing since the kids are someone else responsibility but also because after being around for a while you kind of realize that in the long run the small things are not that important an insight parents lack more often than not, YMMV.

    I wonder if it’s personality or HB number that influences which women get approached.

    Like the Marylin Monroe story is body language and attitude, modeling I could go from literaly make the traffic stop to being invisible just by changing my behaviour. You don’t only need to look pretty but to act pretty.
    I like you and J had not a lot of guys chasing after me, the ones that did were in a huge majority assholes, given that there was not a nerdy culture when I was growing up, oh well thank God to the nerd that invented Internet :)

  • J

    The girls that guys tend to go after are social butterflies. They talk, socialize and flirt with everybody. They often have extended social circles and know a lot of people, both girls and guys.

    Yes, I think that explains a lot. All other things being equal, extroversion FTW.

  • J

    I know you hate it but one of my favorite parts of The Red Tent was when Dinah was telling her cousin that she wanted to have many children and when she lists all the bad things that could happen she just says: “Midwives are not afraid of life”.

    I’m not sure I got that far in the book, but I agree it’s a nice sentiment.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Richard Aubrey

    I’m still a little confused by what you mean, but I’ll try my best to answer.

    It goes without saying that the effectiveness of the edgy traits depends on whether or not a man can pull off the looks or traits well.

    It is indeed true that any man can buy a leather jacket, but not all men look good in leather jackets or would be taken seriously by wearing leather jackets. The same goes for facial hair. Not all men look good with facial hair, and some men can’t grow full beards. They come in patchy instead.

    Having edgy traits just to try to be edgy doesn’t work. They have to be believable and they have to be well executed. Putting a nerdy guy in a leather jacket would make him more of a laughing stock than helping his credibility. Playing a sport or instrument badly won’t help a man either.

    What I’m trying to say is that, in order for edgy characteristics to work, they have to be authentic. Loading up on such traits on purpose won’t work. They have to fit the man and they have to be a part of who he is.

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    Zach, well, the thing is, my husband has very sharp wit and is quick with the comebacks. If someone said in a group situation that he was lost, he’d be like, “Hey, go ahead and lead the way.” He has a way of saying things in a very nonchalant and cool manner, and he can crack jokes that make others laugh and put the insult-hurling person on the spot, and often turn it into a comedic spar of words. Sometimes he can also cut through that tension with exaggerated self-mockery, which also makes the other guy go “WTF?”

    There have been times when other guys tried to enlist my help in insulting him, or say stuff to me like “he’s such a jerk, isn’t he?” but I won’t have any of it and usually offer something cheesy or gushy, like “nah, he’s really awesome,” and that generally stops them in their tracks, because they never expect it and don’t know what to do next. So I guess the situation that you describe would never escalate to such a level that my husband would even get angry. The worst case for both of us is when a female acts all crazy trying to insult him. Then we just both have to get out of there.

  • College Kid

    “It’s great for the guy to feel this way and believe it. He just can’t demonstrate it outwardly. He can’t gush effusively about how great she is to her and the world. The minute he does that, she reacts like Marnie: She recoils at his touch, can’t stand sex with him, gets turned off and creeped out.”

    My cousin who was my roommate at the time had a boyfriend announce to the world on Myspace how wonderful it was to be in love and that he just couldn’t contain himself and had to share it. My cousin was immediately suspicious because he had been posting back and forth with this other girl on Myspace who responded with, “aaaawww, your gf is so lucky to have a guy like you”. Turns out he was not writing about my cousin but was just trying to prove to the other girl how demonstrative with affection he can be if and when he were to ever fall in love.

    It worked. He and the other girl started dating and they’re married now.

  • Ramble

    So very true might mother stayed at home till the youngest was around 4, but she used to produce money selling baked goods, doing raffles and all sorts of small businesses at home and we all helped the best we could so yeah is a myth that poor women get to stay at home and look after the kids only in poor countries all our female neighbors added income to the house somehow.

    The majority of married women (with children) before World War I worked. Many, did things just like you mentioned.

  • Richard Aubrey

    Sassy. Okay. Suppose the hypothetical paratrooper–the real deal–is clean as a hound’s tooth, dresses in L. L. Bean casual, signals no edginess whatsoever.
    We can presume he’d be forthright dealing with the world. He’s not only jumped out of airplanes, but he’s probably killed people in various cesspits of the world, and can handle equipment most guys wouldn’t recognize.
    The question is, once you find out he’s a paratrooper, will that do for edginess even without signals?
    This is kind of an exaggerated way of questioning whether real deal guys are screwed if they don’t go down to the leather store, and get a lip ring. If you’re real, do you have to fake it, too?

  • Ramble

    oh well thank God to the nerd that invented Internet

    Al Gore says, “Your Welcome”.

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    Anacaona, oh I can be grosser than that. I pick his back pores and show the pickings to him. He’s always like “get that away from me!”

    Richard Aubrey, in my opinion, not at all. The real deal is always preferable to the skin deep.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      Anacaona, oh I can be grosser than that. I pick his back pores and show the pickings to him.

      OMG, I almost fainted when I read this. Gross!

  • Herb

    @Ted D

    “-Playing in a band, or expertise in a traditional band instrument (guitar, bass, drums). Being the lead singer also works.”

    WOOHOO! I have this one! I was worried for a minute there I would come up with zilch.

    I was afraid I would and I did. My instruments aren’t manly (mostly winds, some keyboards…I own a bass, but it’s my least ability ). My extreme sport (triathlon and other multi-sports) didn’t make the cut (although I’m thinking of giving cyclocross a shot, does that fit in with BMX, which is the entry point for a lot of US cyclocross racers).

    Given what’s been on my mind the past few days I realize while I was thinking I was raised beta, I was raised by a man who was that perfect mix. Yet, I think that if these women met him they’d never give him the time of day. The masculine he taught me has the edge (military family, he was a Naval Academy man) but was too quiet for today’s women. It had the provider beta aspects (in his last lucid moments he was concerned about the dog’s monthly heartworm meds, getting the sprinklers on for the summer, and arranging for lawn care and making sure I got them done).

    I think too many women wouldn’t recognize the perfect mix because they have no idea what that really entails. It isn’t sexy, isn’t flashy, and it can be boring.

    But it makes the world work in ways Mr. Tatooed Leatherjacket Motorcycle Kickerboxer never will.

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      I think too many women wouldn’t recognize the perfect mix because they have no idea what that really entails. It isn’t sexy, isn’t flashy, and it can be boring.

      But it makes the world work in ways Mr. Tatooed Leatherjacket Motorcycle Kickerboxer never will.

      +1

  • Sassy6519

    @ Richard Aubrey

    Sassy. Okay. Suppose the hypothetical paratrooper–the real deal–is clean as a hound’s tooth, dresses in L. L. Bean casual, signals no edginess whatsoever.
    We can presume he’d be forthright dealing with the world. He’s not only jumped out of airplanes, but he’s probably killed people in various cesspits of the world, and can handle equipment most guys wouldn’t recognize.
    The question is, once you find out he’s a paratrooper, will that do for edginess even without signals?
    This is kind of an exaggerated way of questioning whether real deal guys are screwed if they don’t go down to the leather store, and get a lip ring. If you’re real, do you have to fake it, too?

    For me, if a handsome man told me that he was a paratrooper, I would be very fascinated. It fulfills one of the edgy parameters.

    Knowing how to fight or specializing in a specific combat art (boxing, muay thai, mixed martial arts.)

    He would get double points if he took me to a shooting range to show off his skills, or if he took me to a gym to show me some of his combat skills. It satisfies the edginess parameter because:

    1. It’s naturally a part of who he is and he is good at it.
    2. It’s extremely masculine.

    It’s not a fake display. It’s just not outwardly apparent. I suggest that any man who has a non-outwardly apparent edginess trait show this trait off to a woman they are dating. It’s extremely attractive.

    1. If you know how to fight or shoot, take your woman to a shooting range or gym to show her your skills.

    2. If you play a sport, invite her to your games and show her your skills.

    3. If you play in a band, or play an instrument, invite her to one of your shows or give her a private music lesson.

    4. If you ride a motorcycle, show her your skills or offer to give her a ride.

    All of those things aren’t apparent, from a purely physical standpoint, but they are very effective tingle inducers when they are demonstrated or shown off.

  • Mule Chewing Briars

    Re: NYC

    I read somewhere that 90% of all the profits generated in the world funnel into NYC or London. This is why the real estate is so outrageous there. People to whom these profits flow have the wherewithall to purchase it, and the locals who value living there, hopefully, front-load it with taxes to keep the Masters of the Universe from swallowing everything in sight.

    What was it Tom Wolfe said? “Hitler didn’t hate the Jews half as much as a Manhattan landlord hates his rent-controlled tenants.”

  • Herb

    @Ana

    Anacaona, I had my husband’s underwear and shirt, and I liked to smell them, when we were long-distance.

    Heh maybe there is a correlation between the grossness of the woman and the pregnancy rate.

    My ex-wife would have me wear the same shirt several days in a row before I went to sea for deployment. She’d use it as a pillow case to have my scent around.

    So I think this is fairly common.

  • Herb

    @Everyone

    Thank you for the well wishing.

  • Jackie

    @Herb

    Dear Herb,
    I am truly sorry to hear about your loss. Your father sounds like such a wonderful man and what a testament to your parents’ marriage! Please accept my condolences — I know how hard and heartbreaking it is to lose a beloved parent.

    Kindest regards,
    Jackie
    PS: If it helps, mentioning the great things about your dad may ease some of the pain. I mention my mom and parents’ marriage here more than I ever do in real life. I don’t know why, but it heals something within. Talking about them, if you feel comfortable, can honor them and let them live on, in a kind of fashion. You and your mom are in my thoughts, Herb.

  • Jackie

    @J
    “I also think it’s a myth that rural environments or small towns have nothing but upstanding young men, or even more upstanding young men than any other place. Or at least I’ve never seen any evidence for that claim.

    There’s a surprising amount of alcohol and drug abuse in rural areas. Social life revolves around drinking because there’s not much else to do.”
    —————————-
    Co-signed!

    I think there is some kind of Norman Rockwell Americana association with small towns. When, in my experience, everybody knows everyone else’s business, there is a distinct lack of opportunity and advancement and church/alcohol/meth are the principal recreations.

    There was a story I was going to tell about scariness in a small town, but it’s best suited for another day/another thread. ;)

  • Lurker

    You can watch the whole episode on youtube:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OrQfvq9RfM0

  • Jackie

    @Ramble

    Hi Ramble,

    This is late in the thread, but I realized I might have sounded flippant in my answers to you about the Red Pill. It definitely causes a shift in consciousness that isn’t really about joking around. I truly meant no offense and hope you will accept my sincere apologies and well wishes–

  • ExNewYorker

    @J

    “Still, I wonder what it is that makes nerd boys pursue “alpha” chicks rather than nerd girls.”

    I went to STEM Central University in Boston (actually, Cambridge, for the sticklers), and currently work in Silicon Valley, and by and large, nerd boys don’t pursue “alpha” chicks. The times that it happens, it tends to be the more “alpha” nerd guys, but that is a very small group. May I inquire if you’ve been watching too much “The Big Bang Theory” on TV :-) ?

    I think Hope had a pretty good assessment in her post #170. The ratios skew so heavily against guys that nerdy girls usually have no difficulties finding guys, unless they have one several circumstance: 1) they don’t like nerdy guys themselves, 2) they are significantly overweight or 3) they only want to focus on their “career” (though often times this is a diplomatic way to saying 1).

    With such skewed ratios, they can often get quite hypergamic. Some of us reformed betas decided to open the field to non-nerdy girls, and that worked pretty well, at least in my case.

  • Jackie

    @Wudang

    ” One message they are left with is that rewards and success should be/is easy. Another message is that it is necessary to perceive yourself as having done good to feel good about yourself. There is a difference between self love/self worth/self aceptance which can and should be unconditional and confidence/belief in your abilities and perception of your qualitites.”
    ———————-
    Hey Wudang!

    Well said, sir. I think you really hit the nail on the head: Somewhere along the line accomplishment and self-value got conflated. Any pin-prick to their accomplishments (or lack thereof :( ) is taken as a personal slight.

    This occurred just yesterday: I had to tell someone they made a mistake– and that I still like them lots– they just need to fix the error. I try to give these kind of folks criticisms in a “sandwich”: point out the good (bread), mention the error (PB & J), then mention how well they’ved solved something similar in the past (bread).

  • Richard Aubrey

    Sassy. I gather you’re talking about visceral reax.
    I qualified with all the weapons in the rifle battalion except for heavy mortars which requires a special school that didn’t interest me. Going to a range where you can only shoot one shot at a time at a target that sits still at a range just out of rock-throwing and doesn’t shoot back would be like an F1 driver taking his gf for a ride in his VW from Peoria to Springfield. Even if she got tingled, he’d be bored absolutely silly. He might also wonder what’s up with somebody who got hot from that–rifle range or VW over the praries, whichever. I suppose that getting up close and personal helping her get the proper sight alignment or something might be interesting….
    I competed in judo and lacrosse and the only woman I recall being interested was a judo club rookie who wanted me to teach her the hip throw. Without going into the mechanics of the hip throw, it should have struck me as being almost as good as an introduction. Missed that.
    I once subdued and threw out a violent intruder at a fraternity party. All the women there were attending with their SO, so it didn’t do me much good in the social line.
    You know what? I’d dump a woman who got hot watching me prepare to injure or kill somebody. There ought to be an adult female around somepace.
    Mercy. What I said about the moron who suggested putting women on a pedestal needs to be reinforced. Eesh.

  • Emily

    I would also consider certain types of humour to be “edgy”.

    Part of why the “bad boy” characters are so appealing in TV/Movies is because they often have the wittiest lines.

  • Ramble

    Jackie, I wasn’t offended by anything you said to me. And, honestly, even after your explanation, I am still not sure what might have offended me.

    No worries.

  • Jackie

    @Cooper (#174)

    Hi Cooper,

    I’ve read several of your posts and you sound like you really have your act together, head and shoulder above many of your contemporaries! That’s awesome! :)

    I agree with J (as I do just about always– J is awesome, too), in NAWALT. There are tons of cute girls who would be eager to date someone like you. As for your female nerd seeking– what kind of nerdy activities do you like? Gaming? LARP? Anything with a Con?

    There is a Doctor Who trivia night at a pub that is always packed, way in advance. There’s a lot of stuff on meetup.com that pertains to nerds of both genders. I’m looking forward to a film meetup that’s totally old school– watching and discussing classic B&W movies.

    You might have to put yourself out there a little more, but I bet you’ll have fun and meet more people. Best of luck, Cooper–

  • Sassy6519

    @ Emily

    I would also consider certain types of humour to be “edgy”.

    Part of why the “bad boy” characters are so appealing in TV/Movies is because they often have the wittiest lines.

    I agree. That’s a good addition to the list.

    There are quite a few examples of the edgy male comedian. Quite a few bad boys do fit this parameter as well.

    Andrew Dice Clay and Dane Cook definitely popped into my head when you mentioned this.

  • Jackie

    @Ramble
    Cool 8)

    Sometimes it’s hard to tell tone on the internet. And being cute & joking around about a pink pill for chicks might have been taken the wrong way. Anyways, glad there’s no issue :)

  • Lavazza

    Zach: I grew up in a working class neighbourhood in an industrial city in Sweden and went to one of the two old universities. Now I am an expat in another European country. The last time I saw something threatful was a late night out in Stockholm (Manhattan is much more quiet and secure, at least Midtown) and walking to a football game between the biggest club of Stockholm and the biggest club of Gothenburg, when everybody was drunk at noon and glass shattered over the streets and supporters chanting about how much they hate each other.

  • Kirk

    “That’s insane to burn someone without provocation. Did you call the police?”

    @J
    They ran away before I could flag down a cop. I did manage to file a report, though. While I’m not one to believe in pseudoscience, I often feel that I emit an aura that brings out the worst in women.

  • Lavazza

    Here’s a weird YouTube clip of hooligan kids who meet up on a residential street to fight.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K93lgg2ItXk&feature=related

  • Jackie

    @Kirk

    I don’t care if you were emitting auras, rainbows or glitter– NO ONE should be assaulting you with a lit cigarette! Ouchouchouch!

    And, by the way, that is assault and that girl should have been arrested. I hope your arm is feeling better.

  • INTJ

    @ Jackie

    I was always under the impression that girls at nerdy activities are tired of getting unwanted attention. Like I remember reading one girl complaining on wizards.com that when she went to an MtG event, guys kept hitting on her.

  • INTJ

    @ ExNewYorker

    @J

    “Still, I wonder what it is that makes nerd boys pursue “alpha” chicks rather than nerd girls.”

    I went to STEM Central University in Boston (actually, Cambridge, for the sticklers), and currently work in Silicon Valley, and by and large, nerd boys don’t pursue “alpha” chicks. The times that it happens, it tends to be the more “alpha” nerd guys, but that is a very small group. May I inquire if you’ve been watching too much “The Big Bang Theory” on TV ?

    I think Hope had a pretty good assessment in her post #170. The ratios skew so heavily against guys that nerdy girls usually have no difficulties finding guys, unless they have one several circumstance: 1) they don’t like nerdy guys themselves, 2) they are significantly overweight or 3) they only want to focus on their “career” (though often times this is a diplomatic way to saying 1).

    With such skewed ratios, they can often get quite hypergamic. Some of us reformed betas decided to open the field to non-nerdy girls, and that worked pretty well, at least in my case.

    Definitely. Girl’s in STEM are extremely choosy and/or slutty, and they can afford to be. A friend of mine in CS talks about how because the male-female ratio is around 10-1, she basically gets her pick of the bunch. From her stories of people she’s hooked up with, it seems like she acts like an alpha male, as she has a harem of guys that she regularly hooks up with.

    I’d never consider a STEM girl unless she showed me strong IOIs and I had serious evidence that she isn’t the kind to try out one boyfriend after another.

  • INTJ

    Whoops. Formatting fail.

    I wrote this:

    Definitely. Girl’s in STEM are extremely choosy and/or slutty, and they can afford to be. A friend of mine in CS talks about how because the male-female ratio is around 10-1, she basically gets her pick of the bunch. From her stories of people she’s hooked up with, it seems like she acts like an alpha male, as she has a harem of guys that she regularly hooks up with.

    I’d never consider a STEM girl unless she showed me strong IOIs and I had serious evidence that she isn’t the kind to try out one boyfriend after another.

  • Cooper

    @Jackie

    Thanks for the kind words.

    As for my nerdy-activities:

    I do play a lot of video-games.
    In the gaming realm, I’d be considered a hardcore-casual – as I usually don’t play MMOs, but I still spend a lot of time gaming.
    (ex. I’ll spend nights playing RedDeadRedemption/Skyrim/BF3, over LoL/WoW/SWTOR – almost always.)
    That, as well as having a near encyclopedic memory of movies/TV-series.

    I don’t have many friends whom share my enjoyment of games.
    I’d love to have a gang of friends that would like spending an entire night playing Risk, or Settlers of Catan, but I unfortunitely do not associate with anything close to a stereotypical clique of geeks. (not knocking – just I’m literally the only nerd of my friends)
    For example, if I wanted to share that I had a BF3 match, and went 80:31 (like I did the other night, on a 500% ticket server) they’ll immediately change the subject.

    I’ve never considered finding a girl who shares my interest in VGs as even remotely plausable. *shrugs*

  • Jackie

    @INTJ (#209)

    Well, I can only speak for myself: If at a “nerdy” event, a guy came up to me, I would be flattered. :) Maybe some girls hate it.

    Probably some girls will be less than graceful in declining your attentions. But I think that –unpleasant as it may be– rejection is something we all have to face in pursuing what we desire.

    For me, at least, that has been true about everything I really wanted to achieve– lotsa failed attempts before things really came together. Just my 3 cents

  • Jackie

    @Cooper

    Please don’t give up– you sound like a total catch! Hope met her husband through gaming. I know a lot of chicks who like Skyrim. My brother let me play the latest Call of Duty over Easter– it was really fun!

    Maybe you should ask Hope for more details? She is also very very good with advice.

    PS: Settlers of Catan is awesome. :) Lots of girls like this stuff. Really!

  • http://www.rosehope.com/ Hope

    Susan, sorry! Didn’t mean to gross you out.

    INTJ, yes, nerdy girls can be really picky. I’ve usually befriended girls who are already in relationships, but the ones who “play the field” can definitely make a bad name for the rest of us.

    Cooper, I think as you get older video games will become a more periphery activity. My husband and I met in WoW, but we don’t play anymore. It’s better to focus on finding someone who has good characteristics for the long haul. If the only thing that bonded us was our gaming habit, we’d be in trouble now.

  • Cooper

    Jackie, I’ve got to admit I have a hard time straying from ‘MGTOW’ behavoir.

    I’ve faced unrequited feelings – oneitis – far too much to bother indicating interest, anymore.

    I’ve been witness to girls say they want a certian particular type of guy, then nealy immediately choose the opposite. I’ve always been the nice option, what I think to be the ‘dependable’ option. But I’m never selected.

    My group of friends has one guy that is our definitive AMOG. When he’s not around, (he’ll be at a FWBs’ apt, unless we have plans to go out) the girls of our group will talk trash about how much of a “man-whore” he is.
    Nearly a year ago, one of our girl-friends hooked up with him. All the other girls gave her such a hard time for hook up with the “jerk.”
    Within maybe a month, the girl that had given the first the hardest time, had done the same. (along with similar shaming, afterwards)
    Then every once in a while, the girls will bring around a ‘new-comer’ (I always foolishly think they’re trying to hook me, or one of the other ‘beta orbiters’, up), they’ll even tell them to watch out for him, cause he has a lot of FWBs. It is rare that the new girl doesn’t sleep with him.

    I’ve come to identify with this term “beta orbiter,” (not that I like to) cause the girls seem to much rather hang out me, talk with me, and ask things of me – all but when it comes to getting some sex.

    Oddly enough, I even think I’m better looking than him, albiet shorter. (But that’s entirely uncorroborated – obviously.)

    In college, I even had a girl deny going out with me cause , and I quote, ” seem[ed] to be looking for something too serious.”
    She was sleeping with some other jerk by the following weekend.

    Re:NAWALT
    This is something I have to try to continously keep conscious of.

  • VD

    Not knocking you for liking that sort of guy, but in my eyes (and most other guys) not reacting forcefully to that sort of comment would classify him as a p**sy. That’s a direct challenge to your manhood, and by turning it down, backing off and allowing it to stand, you might as well be screaming at the top of your lungs “Beta! Beta! Beta!”

    But not allowing it to stand is not synonymous with physically attacking the guy. For example, the day after my wife and I got engaged, we were at a bar with a relatively well-known local band. The bassist, who rather liked her, actually tried to physically edge me out of the group conversation and started hitting on her. He was a big guy too, and probably had six inches and 30 pounds on me. I didn’t react forcefully or physically, I simply tapped him on the shoulder, said “excuse me” and met his eyes, at which point he backed away, made room for me, and turned his attention to one of the other women for the rest of the evening.

    Now, he didn’t know that I was a full contact fighter at the time, or that I had a .38 Smith and Wesson mini loaded with Black Talon in my pocket. But he backed down nonetheless. The problem is that physical confrontation is not only dangerous, but potentially deadly; as Trayvon Martin learned to his detriment, you can never really know who is able and willing to kill you in an instant. So, the goal should always be to achieve your objective using the minimum amount of conflict required.

    Sure, it feels great to physically dominate another man. I once had both my arms covered in another guy’s blood all the way down to my elbows after a fight in a nightclub, and it was a serious adrenaline rush. I quite enjoyed it. But getting physical right away is really not a smart move, especially when the other guy’s only offense is verbal. Was the guy trying to poach your girlfriend being a dick? To be sure. Did he need to be confronted in some fashion? Yes, most likely. But most trained fighters will tell you that taking it to the physical when you still have other options is both unwise and amateurish. If you can achieve the same result with a simple comment, as Hope suggested her husband would, doesn’t that make sense?

    The most dangerous fighter I ever knew – I once saw him beat the absolute hell out of the point fighter who was ranked 12th in the nation at the time – used to teach us that the very best self-defense move is to spin, put one foot in front of the other, and keep doing that until you reach the exit. Not only have I never known anyone who was less of a pussy than him, but he is now married to a very pretty woman 18 years his junior whose nickname is Penthouse. If you met him, I don’t think you’d conclude he is anything but an alpha’s alpha.

  • ExNewYorker

    @Hope

    “INTJ, yes, nerdy girls can be really picky. I’ve usually befriended girls who are already in relationships, but the ones who “play the field” can definitely make a bad name for the rest of us.”

    *Laugh* Yeah, they can be. That’s why I always laugh when some of the commenters (here at HUS and elsewhere) complain that STEM guys need to date STEM girls, or stop pursuing the “cheerleaders” or “alpha” girls, or that we need to give our fellow “intelligent” women a chance or stick to “assortive” dating. At STEM Central, it was our first preference to date a fellow STEM Central girl, for a variety of reasons, including logistics, and likelihood of commonality in interests. But when the M:F ratio is 3:1 undergrad (and even worse, 10:1 in grad school), the numbers are against us guys, and lots of us wound up the Sahara Desert of the SMP. Occasionally, the bolder ones among us STEM guys would talk to girls outside STEM Central, but unless the guy was a natural, the awkwardness would out us immediately as STEM guys, so back to square one. So no, your average MIT student would not likely be dating any BU cheerleader…

    Now, add a few years of work experience, meeting a larger variety of people due to work (as opposed to all STEM people), and getting some confidence, due to work, travel and outside hobbies, and you find that a larger variety of women become possible partners (especially if one has some game principles in mind). At that point, there’s no need to limit oneself that way…heck, it’s nice having a level of polarity.

  • VD

    Here’s a weird YouTube clip of hooligan kids who meet up on a residential street to fight.

    Those little slap-fighting dweebs have absolutely no idea what they’re doing. If you want to see someone who knows how to fight, check out this guy, presumably a boxer, getting attacked in public by four or five guys at once. Notice how he keeps moving at all times, uses their bodies to impede each other, and controls the gap by stepping into their attacks. He also conserves his motion; even when his punches miss, they don’t throw him off balance or leave him exposed for more than a moment.

  • Jon

    @Richard,

    That look works well for me. No spitting on the sidewalk required.

    However, after reading Sassy’s list, it occurred to me that I had a few other edgy traits in place already (martial arts, wrestling, musician, loner), so it fits my identity.

  • Emily

    Cooper,

    That sucks. :(

    It sounds like those girls weren’t good relationship bets anyways, so you dodged a few bullets there. They clearly have no self-control, which is never a good trait in a LTR partner. There are a lot of girls out there who are also looking for something “serious”, so there’s no need to waste your time on somebody who doesn’t appreciate that.

    Feel free to ignore my advice, but maybe it would be a good idea for you to expand your social circle and meet new people. I’m not saying that you have to ditch your old friends or anything, but IME sluts tend to befriend other sluts. So if you want a girl who won’t automatically jump on the AMOG, you might need to look outside of that particular friend group.

  • Jimmy Hendricks

    My group of friends has one guy that is our definitive AMOG. When he’s not around, (he’ll be at a FWBs’ apt, unless we have plans to go out) the girls of our group will talk trash about how much of a “man-whore” he is.
    Nearly a year ago, one of our girl-friends hooked up with him. All the other girls gave her such a hard time for hook up with the “jerk.”
    Within maybe a month, the girl that had given the first the hardest time, had done the same. (along with similar shaming, afterwards)
    Then every once in a while, the girls will bring around a ‘new-comer’ (I always foolishly think they’re trying to hook me, or one of the other ‘beta orbiters’, up), they’ll even tell them to watch out for him, cause he has a lot of FWBs. It is rare that the new girl doesn’t sleep with him.

    That story’s so common it’s almost become a cliche. I’ve seen it play out that way in many different friend groups. Definitely one of the main reasons that led me to take the red pill.

  • Richard Aubrey

    Jon. I’m glad for you that the look works. I’m not so happy to find out that it works at all.

  • OffTheCuff

    “On the other hand, “stop being a turkey” is hilarious. I don’t even know what he means, but it makes me laugh. ”

    Retro insults are funny. I think the sweet spot would be lingo from “Happy Days”. Think about it – when you watch “West Side Story”, the formerly threatening thugs are now hilariously lame. Hey, Daddy-O!

  • Dogsquat

    Cooper said:

    “You say I “need to select women very carefully,” but if I were to discuss any sort of relationship topic (ie. Where do you see this going? ect.) I’d be catagorized as ‘having a vagina.’”
    ___________________________

    You might know this already, but I feel compelled to speak anyway. This is my take on it, and some of you PUA types might find fault here. I don’t care. I have exactly what I want in a girl – didn’t settle at all – and there aren’t too many men that can say that.

    First, partner selection is paramount. People tell you all kinds of things without meaning to – so pay attention. Drop ‘em and un-ass the Area of Operations if they exhibit deal-breaker behavior.

    You may also benefit from a little tweak in your frame:

    YOU are the prize. She’s auditioning to be a part of the Cooper Show, and if she can’t hack it, well, there’s another gal right behind her waiting for her chance. Good luck and don’t let the door hit you in the ass on your way out SweetThang…

    Internalize that shit. Live it. Become it.

    How does Mr. Cooper – creator, producer, writer, and pure genius behind The Cooper Show (you best stand when he comes in the room) – how does HE tell a girl he’s into her?

    Well, Mr. Cooper doesn’t ask questions. He makes statements. He’ll say jokingly at first,”I figured out something I’ve been pondering for a bit.”

    “Oh yeah? What’s that?” the current object of his affections purrs.

    He looks right into her eyes for this one, not breaking contact until she does, “I’m not going to date anyone else for a bit. I like you and I want to see where this goes. Let me know if you’re dating anyone else.”

    See that? Declarative statements, and orders to comply with a (reasonable) request. None of this questioning her about “feelings”. Mr. Cooper doesn’t care what comes out of her mouth just now, he’s interested in what she’ll DO. He cares about her ACTIONS not her WORDS. He’s doing her a favor by mentioning his intentions. Mr Cooper isn’t worried about the future, either, because he’s got that shit on lock-down. He knows things will work out for him, whether with this girl or another.

    Once you get this attitude to sink into your bones, you’ll see that it’s not arrogance. Dude, the fact of the matter is that most people are wastes of good carbon. They have no mission, no discipline, no reason for breathing. If that’s not you, then it’s a fucking NECESSITY that you screen those remoras out of your life.

    Think about it – you want a girl that’s attractive, nice, loyal, thoughtful, fair, and who has your back. That’s a valuable human being right there. That kind of girl screens guys out constantly because she doesn’t want to waste effort on losers. You’re just doing what attractive women have done for thousands of years.

    –pulls out soapbox–

    I think getting this attitude is about 25% Game and maybe 75% actually having your shit together. If you’re fat, drop the weight. If you’re skinny, hit the gym. If you’re shy, join Toastmasters, volunteer, and talk to 3 strangers a day. If you’re a pussy, come to Uncle Dogsquat’s Saturday morning Krav Maga class. If you’re dumb, read books, go to class, and turn off the TV.

    Put video games in the same category as alcohol – it’s nice to enjoy a 33 year old Balvenie (or another Speyside whisky of your choice, of course) once in awhile. Drinking every night and all weekend is a recipe for mediocrity, though. So it is with video games.

    Seriously – it’s not a bad a goal to set for yourself:

    Become the man that The Girl Of Your Dreams would tingle for.

    This seems kind of beta and supplicating at first, and maybe it is. It doesn’t stay that way for long, though. You build a career, live honorably, make friends and network with other interesting people, improve upon yourself – and things start happening for you. People (not just girls) notice guys like that. Those guys are very rare, and people want those guys on their team. People will give those guys opportunities, and feel good about helping out.

    Do it for six months. You’ll know I’m right when women you work with start asking if you’re single. After a year of it that same woman will try to tease you because all the gals have crushes on you.

    Something will snap in your head when you experience this. It’s mindblowing – the single (or unhappily married) women kind of “present” themselves to you. They linger in your area, do a lot of hair flipping, and lean over you to get things. They try and touch you a lot. The shy ones will stare at you,and they blush furiously when you smile and say,”Hi! You look nice today!”

    When you read something like “I’m not going to date anyone else for a bit. I like you and I want to see where this goes. Let me know if you’re dating anyone else,” and you wonder why any guy would beat around the bush with this kind of stuff, you’re living right.

    Then, my friend…then you go hunt for the one you want.

  • Sassy6519

    If you’re a pussy, come to Uncle Dogsquat’s Saturday morning Krav Maga class.

    Krav Maga?

    Tingles……………….tingles everywhere.

  • Dogsquat

    Richard Aubrey said:

    “So, we have a well-groomed paratrooper whose tat is a parachute and the words “death from above”. No rings, no beard, takes daily showers.
    IOW, the real deal, not a combination of signals.”

    ___________________________

    I am picking up what you’re putting down.

    I’m working on my undergrad after a couple of hitches as a Marine grunt and some other stuff. Some of the tough guy posturing in the halls and the bars makes me smile.

    I have a buddy who had his rifle shot out of his hands, and then killed the shooter with his K Bar. The same guy participated in a no-shit bayonet charge – seriously. They were in long fight with some Fedayeen Saddam types, and were unable to get resupply or supporting fires. They didn’t want to leave their wounded behind, so when they got down to less than ten rounds per man, the Lt. yelled out,”FIX BAYONETS!”

    They went a chargin’ and a hollerin’ across a highway and into a village. They took about 50 well armed prisoners with 21 Marines and no ammo.

    That dude is maybe 5’7″ and 150 lbs. He in college now and wants to be an English teacher. He’s a super nice guy, too – you’d never know that about him unless you’d seen it for yourself.

    Football players acting tough is actually kind of cute. They’re like puppies practicing growls. Wolves like my friend don’t broadcast anything.

  • Dogsquat

    Yes, Sassy – that’s Hebrew for “breakfast pastry”.

  • Sassy6519

    @ Dogsquat

    No it isn’t. I know what krav maga is. It’s an Israeli inspired fighting and defensive technique.

    I’ll give you bonus tingles for being cheeky though.

  • Herb

    Back to the “perfect mix” idea, although it’s often treated as a joke in the services when I was asked for possible phrases for my father’s memorial today the one I suggested, and that my mother choose, is one that is for most people a movie title:

    An Officer and a Gentleman

    I think that is a pretty good one word summary of it. An officer is a man who can both lead and follow, who takes risks, exercises authority, and accepts responsibility. A gentleman is a person both of position and respect but one who takes care to be respectful to others as well as to care for those below him.

    That would seem to be both alpha and beta. The ability to be in charge but to tempter that with caring and morality.

    What it isn’t, except when needed, is edgy.

    I emphasized those words for a reason because I think it gets to the whole douche-bag problem. Edgy, as in violent, assertive, controlling, is something the perfect mix will exercise when needed to protect himself and his (the later may be broadly read as “what he is pledged to protect”. He doesn’t use it merely to get his latest toy. That is the realm of the douche-bag.

    The thing is, the perfect mix, in restraining his edginess, expects a loyalty in return. When a woman repays that restraint by putting him into the “nice guy” box she’ll soon learn the edginess will only show up to screw her, not protect her.

    He is also why I get upset with MRAs. Many MRAs want to free men from that restraint, not to be PUAs but to free them from the responsibility to protect and support, even to their own determent. To me MRAs of that stripe are either merely a response to the breakdown or the repeat of the worst of feminism with men. They want to finish breaking the world.

    So, ladies, could you with a straight face call the man who is wooing you an Officer and a Gentleman in the most idealistic reading of those words (in aspiration even if he falls short) instead of the most cynical? If so, he’s one of Susan’s keepers and you shouldn’t be asking ” but what could I be passing up later” but “can I ever get this lucky again”.

    For those wondering if I have a phrase for his counterpart, I do, wife and mother.

  • Wudang

    “Krav Maga?

    Tingles……………….tingles everywhere.”

    I have always thought that the confidence and fearlesness that comes from martial arts is attractive to women and that a woman finding out you do a martial art might be a small attraction booster but never knew it ranked so highly as a tingle producer as I get the impression it does in this thread. It makes perfect sense to me that it does but the feeling I have had was that it did not do more than give a tiny attraction boost to some but far from all women. I`m very glad to find out it does more than that as I have my first thai boxing lesson in a couple of weeks.

  • Richard Aubrey

    From the department of too soon old, too late smart, I was told and think it may be true, that you don’t have to tell anybody.
    I competed, as I said, in lax and judo. Took a “self defense course” which is what we told the university. Actually, it was scientific dirty fighting.
    I told few people, conversations rarely going in that direction.
    But, said a couple of folks, guys who relish contact/combat sports, etc. have a confidence different from that provided by fitness by itself, or general competence.
    It’s different, said they, on its subliminal effect.
    Besides, as with some old guy who called himself “Thorfinn Skullcleaver” there’s likely to be some punk who feels called to say, “Oh yeah?” And it’s tiresome, unless he gets lucky. So I didn’t say much about it.

  • Wudang

    “But, said a couple of folks, guys who relish contact/combat sports, etc. have a confidence different from that provided by fitness by itself, or general competence.
    It’s different, said they, on its subliminal effect.”

    This is most certainly true. The Krav Maga teachers I had were way more confident and sexure and alpha than the average guy and the same apears to be the case with the thai boxing people I am going to learn from now. Generally martial arts guys seem to me to also be rather nice/warm and strongly principled. A woman looking for a unicorn should really search in martial arts groups.

  • Herb

    Put video games in the same category as alcohol – it’s nice to enjoy a 33 year old Balvenie (or another Speyside whisky of your choice, of course) once in awhile. Drinking every night and all weekend is a recipe for mediocrity, though. So it is with video games.

    +1…

    It’s not even bad to drink a PBR, but if that’s all you got then you’re not bringing it.

    I might read comics, but I can understand (and write software to analyze) complex mathematical models (of machines or markets). I play D&D but I read classics. I play and write music. I’m a former multi-sport athlete and will be again this year.

    Become someone worthwhile, it’s good for you. Forget about the girl getting part of it and just do it for you.

  • Richard Aubrey

    just for grins, google up—– yon “punishers’ ball”— and look at the women.
    Also get Luttrell’s “Lone Survivor” and check out the pix of his teammates’ unfortunate SOs.
    I believe Barbara Cartland said of her characters that when a man seduces a woman he is not naked, he is wearing a uniform.

  • OffTheCuff

    J: Hope is an 8, easily. Me, I think I am a 5 (average) but the Mrs. calls me an 8. Actually, given the OKcupid surveys, we all know that typical men are below average, so, I know women see me as a 3.5, maybe 4. Still, this 4 has gotten casual sex invites from strangers. I don’t get it. Attraction is weird like that.

  • Dogsquat

    Richard said:

    “Besides, as with some old guy who called himself “Thorfinn Skullcleaver” there’s likely to be some punk who feels called to say, “Oh yeah?” And it’s tiresome, unless he gets lucky. So I didn’t say much about it.”
    __________________

    I’m not too up on my Viking history, but if old Earl Skullcleaver lived his days like Miyamoto Musashi or Jim from Blazing Saddles did, I get what you’re saying.

    I am not a badass by any means – I’ve had my ass kicked before – more than once, actually. I also don’t really enjoy fighting. I used to, but as I’ve gotten my head on rather-more-or-less, I realize what an idiot I was as a younger guy. These days I’m usually carrying concealed, anyway, and it is morally reprehensible to allow a situation to escalate when that’s a part of the equation. Getting insulted is just something one should accept without complaint/avoid in the first place when armed.

    I do really, really like Krav, though. Good workout, a little extra pocket money, and generally nice people. I proselytize a little to young guys, too, because so much of what was considered Manly has been bleached from our culture.

    The average 20 year old college kid can’t fix anything, doesn’t know how to build anything (bongs being a notable exception), and would die of exposure in minutes if you told him Room Service stopped an hour ago.

    At some level, a lot of these kids know that. They feel that something’s missing, like they’re not whole. It’s hard for them to take pride in themselves sometimes, because so much of what they’re told to do is nebulous and of no concrete value. I saw that a lot with some of the Occupy Wall Street guys I talked with awhile ago. They were given a faulty script to follow, did so, and are now basically useless – to themselves and everyone else. That’s not a good place to be as a man.

    Don’t get me wrong – I don’t think it’s entirely the kids’ fault, nor do I find them less capable or anything. They’re exactly what they’ve been raised to be, which is half man, half….something else.

    Learning to handle physical confrontation is a good way to address that, at least in part. The “good” kids call the cops or pray for a bouncer if somebody hassles them. That act rubs their nose in how useless their upbringing has been, and highlights how broken the system is. It guts their self-worth. In that moment, they’re paying for all the do-gooder feminized teachers (and some bad lawyers) who decided that, even though it’s life-or-death, they shouldn’t have certain tools because “good” boys don’t do that sort of thing. Again, it’s not good for them as men.

    Some ethical, practical instruction in real fighting fills part of that hole. Instead of being some taboo subject, they are shown the real deal. It’s also useful to teach some of these sheltered kids that there are For Real Bad Guys out there – people who don’t “listen to reason” and don’t care who you voted for.

    I’m a pretty worried about our country, and the West in general. I’ve got this fear that I’ll be eighty fucking years old, and somebody’s gonna have to wheel Ol’ Grampa Dogsquat out to the barricades to fight the barbarians because the younger guys are organizing a sit-in or sobbing hysterically while signing petitions. Teaching a little Intro to Krav class once in awhile helps me stuff that fear down, even though I’m probably just kidding myself.

    Man, I’m chatty today.

  • Richard Aubrey

    dog.
    I get what you’re saying. But the sensei’s instruction that the best thing to do in case of trouble is to unass the area conflicts with the citizen’s duty to leave the area cleaner than he found it. Or maybe that was the Boy Scouts.
    The emotional conflict between the sheep and the sheep dogs is pretty strong. The latter remind the former that there are wolves. But that’s scary, so the sheep slag the sheep dogs. The sheep dogs–regulars–know that the sheeps’ insistence on pacifism increases the likelihood of a wolf attack–metaphor alert–and that the sheep are actually making things dangerous for those congenitally destined for sheep dog duty. The regulars have to die hard to provide time for the sheep puppies to get trained up to take care of the sheep. That pisses off the regulars/sheep dogs no end. As it should
    For fun, go to youtube. Search for “roger moore” “thomas atkins”. What if Tommy goes on strike? Your colleagues may survive.
    IMO, confidence is a tell or proxy for competence in dealing with the real world. Forget computers.
    I once discussed this situation with some younger guys. Learn to fight, I said, and learn serious first aid. As in sucking chest wounds and eviscerations. Not only will that provide confidence, you may need it, as I have needed both in my life, neither as it happens on military duty. Then go on to other meat-world competences.
    If we were to hypothesize a camping trip, the ability to manage all the issues involved in camping would generate tingles, would they not? In which case, it’s a two-fer. Tingles and the ability to manage extremely difficult circumstances. Can’t lose.
    And women who get all lubed up at the sight of a leather jacket and a Harley…might want to find a wolf.

  • Richard Aubrey

    Ref Thomas Atkins.
    It is said that, after the Battle of Waterloo, the Duke of Wellington rode the dismal field. He f0und a spot held to the last by a Guards company. One seemed to be alive. The Duke dismounted and held the man until he died. What can I do for you, the Duke asked. Remember me, the Guardsman said.
    Years later when the Duke was in the position we would call Secretary of Defense, he was asked about a personnel form. Bundles were sent to each unit. The example for filling it out–we would call it the Morning Report or DA-1– included the name of a hypothetical soldier. The Duke insisted the name be “Thomas Atkins”. That being the name he was asked to remember.
    Hence “Tommy”.
    “The Widow” refers to Queen Victoria.

  • http://4stargazer.wordpress.com/ Anacaona

    @Herb
    My condolences about your dad.

  • http://4stargazer.wordpress.com/ Anacaona

    I’m not sure I got that far in the book, but I agree it’s a nice sentiment.
    ??? That was relatively early, did you got offended at the beginning and didn’t finished it? Just curious.

    Al Gore says, “Your Welcome”.

    Heh love that joke.

    Anacaona, oh I can be grosser than that. I pick his back pores and show the pickings to him. He’s always like “get that away from me!”
    Hubby doesn’t has clogged pores or dandruff so…how about getting some of his pub hairs in my teeth after oral and not getting upset over it?

    PS: Settlers of Catan is awesome. Lots of girls like this stuff. Really!

    Among the many reasons I wanted to have kids is to finally have enough players for Settlers I’m always dissapointed when in boardgame night with our friends we don’t get to play at least once. Love that game! :)

  • INTJ

    @ Anacaona

    Among the many reasons I wanted to have kids is to finally have enough players for Settlers I’m always dissapointed when in boardgame night with our friends we don’t get to play at least once. Love that game!

    Settlers of Catan is so addictive isn’t it?

    Though I can’t wait till I have kids and they’re old enough for me to DM a D&D campaign with them. :)

  • Dogsquat

    Richard Aubrey said:

    “But the sensei’s instruction that the best thing to do in case of trouble is to unass the area conflicts with the citizen’s duty to leave the area cleaner than he found it. Or maybe that was the Boy Scouts.”
    ____________________________

    I get it, but Kipling said it best:

    You talk o’ better food for us, an’ schools, an’ fires, an’ all:
    We’ll wait for extry rations if you treat us rational.
    Don’t mess about the cook-room slops, but prove it to our face
    The Widow’s Uniform is not the soldier-man’s disgrace.
    For it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Chuck him out, the brute!”
    But it’s “Saviour of ‘is country” when the guns begin to shoot;
    An’ it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ anything you please;
    An’ Tommy ain’t a bloomin’ fool — you bet that Tommy sees!

    After sitting through a few years of classes at an ultra-liberal State University, I have come to the conclusion that I hate a sizable percentage of sheep. They bleat and bleat about human rights and social justice and the plight of the downtrodden and the high price of gas, sure that somebody will do something.

    Then you go do something, and all they can do is bitch and whine because – guess what, Mr. Humanities Professor – it’s real fuckin’ ugly on the sharp end of things. But everything’s crystal clear to those types because they’ve never done shit in the real world. I hate their pity and their smug superiority and their false outrage and their not-so-subtle insults.

    Maybe it was worth it once. This last go-round was pretty tough on me. Struggling out of the pit I was in, and then paying money to hear what a good percentage of people think about my buddies – those sheep deserve whatever they get. On a very, very good day I can muster up a shred of perverse pride in it. Most days, though, I wouldn’t piss in their mouths if their tongue was on fire.

    I ain’t a bloomin’ fool anymore, and I’m done doing stuff for the “greater good”. In small groups, or one human being to another – I’m happy to help out if I can. It’s a life goal, though, to vomit directly on the shoes of a professor or a politician that says anything about “duty” or “love of country” or “sacrifice” to me.

  • Gorbachev

    Unfortunately, this show has been called out for being racist: the lack of black characters apparently means it’s inherently racist.

  • Lavazza

    VD: Yeah, ideally people should avoid picking a fight with you without even really knowing why. Or at least by a “You got to be kidding me” look.

  • Lavazza

    VD: “Those little slap-fighting dweebs have absolutely no idea what they’re doing.” Which is totally besides my point, which is the weird fact that football firms have kind of “youth academies” and that they sometimes meet up to fight in an organized fashion with someone even filming the event.

    I found the clip when actually looking for footage how it might look around the stadia before important games between strong rivals. Actually there is not much of physical violence or beatings around the stadia, but a lot of symbolic violence, so to speak, that is intimidating to a newcomer. And what I wanted to say is that the way I live my life I don’t even see people picking a fight or expressing symbolic violence more often than a couple of times per decade. And in, for me, easily aviodable situations. I could have called a taxi instead of walking through the whole city centre and I could have gone to the football stadium directly from another angle to avoid the two “dangerous” entrances.

  • http://4stargazer.wordpress.com/ Anacaona

    @INTJ
    Yes kids might not be cheap labor anymore they are cheap game companions till they old enough to hate your guts and yell “you are ruining my life!” :D

    @Hope
    I wanted to cosign the diffusing violence with humor my husband would had said “it looks like someone volunteered to lead the way” move to the back of the file and let the “big mouth” try to put his money where his mouth was. That usually shuts them up nicely. Hubby does knows self defense but he will only use it as a last resort and I like it that way. Nothing makes me feel the “fly or fight” response than a man prone to violent outbursts, or that think violence first asks questions later, YMMV.

  • http://chuckthisblog.wordpress.com Joe

    Lurker, thanks for posting the link to the show on Youtube.

    But I have to ask everybody – is it just my set-up (Firefox on Linux/Fedora) using Adobe flash version 11, or is it them? Every video I tried on Youtube looks awful, like one color is missing (usually, but not always, red). It’s been that way for 3 days now for me.

    Anyway, the episode left me feeling weird. All the characters – including the parents – seemed incredibly, almost unbelievably, immature to me. The girls seemed more like 15 than 24.

    Are they really representative? If so, I’m worried in a way I didn’t expect.

  • DelFresco

    It does sound interesting from a sociological perspective. But man, it sure doesn’t sound like something I’d want to watch. Sounds like non stop cringing.

    I wasn’t a fan of Sex and the City but I could see it’s appeal. If you took away the stylish outfits and the clever banter and the lovely apartments and the casualness of the casual sex, you’d have a rather grim show indeed. It sounds like that’s what Girls is going for.

  • http://facebook tvmunson

    Dogsquat

    Read every word; loved every minute doing so. A handout should be made of your thoughts and it should be mandatory reading for every 18 year old guy on his birthday.

  • also intj

    It’s good to see you, Mr. M unson. I hadn’t noticed posts from you since you last mentioned having another round of chemo about a week ago. I hope you’re feeling okay.

  • Dogsquat

    Thanks, Munson. I’m usually pretty upbeat, but I had a hard night last night. I’m a bitter, judgmental old fart sometimes.

  • http://photoncourier.blogspot.com david foster

    Dogs…another Kipling poem that isn’t nearly as well known:

    The last of the Light Brigade

  • Dogsquat

    David, all grunts love Kipling.

    This one became my favorite after picking up Sergeant:

    http://www.battlepoetry.com/kip/heathen/heathen.htm

    But when I was a (more) dumb ass Lance Corporal, I liked his poem called “Cells”:

    I started o’ canteen porter, I finished o’ canteen beer,
    But a dose o’ gin that a mate slipped in, it was that that brought me here.
    ‘Twas that and an extry double Guard that rubbed my nose in the dirt;
    But I fell away with the Corp’ral’s stock
    and the best of the Corp’ral’s shirt.

    I left my cap in a public-house, my boots in the public road,
    And Lord knows where, and I don’t care, my belt and my tunic goed;
    They’ll stop my pay, they’ll cut away the stripes I used to wear,
    But I left my mark on the Corp’ral’s face, and I think he’ll keep it there!

  • Richard Aubrey

    There was a mil sci fi book in which the author did a suffix, recounting the time a Brit battalion visited the US for joint training. The Brit SGM presented the American SGM with a luxuriously bound book of Kipling.
    Yeah, grunts love Kipling.
    I’ll try to recall the name.
    The Master doesn’t disappoint. See the Lama and the old soldier in Kim, discussing violence. “there is no merit in killing men, as I surely know. But t’would be an ill world for weaponless dreamers if evil men were not now and then slain.”
    Try not misting up no matter how many times you read “Daughter of The Regiment” or “Without Benefit of Clergy”.

  • Mike C

    At some level, a lot of these kids know that. They feel that something’s missing, like they’re not whole. It’s hard for them to take pride in themselves sometimes, because so much of what they’re told to do is nebulous and of no concrete value. I saw that a lot with some of the Occupy Wall Street guys I talked with awhile ago. They were given a faulty script to follow, did so, and are now basically useless – to themselves and everyone else. That’s not a good place to be as a man.

    Don’t get me wrong – I don’t think it’s entirely the kids’ fault, nor do I find them less capable or anything. They’re exactly what they’ve been raised to be, which is half man, half….something else.

    Learning to handle physical confrontation is a good way to address that, at least in part. The “good” kids call the cops or pray for a bouncer if somebody hassles them. That act rubs their nose in how useless their upbringing has been, and highlights how broken the system is. It guts their self-worth. In that moment, they’re paying for all the do-gooder feminized teachers (and some bad lawyers) who decided that, even though it’s life-or-death, they shouldn’t have certain tools because “good” boys don’t do that sort of thing. Again, it’s not good for them as men.

    Some ethical, practical instruction in real fighting fills part of that hole. Instead of being some taboo subject, they are shown the real deal. It’s also useful to teach some of these sheltered kids that there are For Real Bad Guys out there – people who don’t “listen to reason” and don’t care who you voted for.

    Because imitation is the sincerest form of flattery….

    STEEL ON MF’N TARGET

    Keep dropping the wisdom Dogsquat.

    P.S. If you are ever in the Chicagoland area, I’d love to meet up with you and just grab a few beers.

  • Herb

    @David:

    Charge of the Light Brigade is well known enough to be a

    @Dogsquat

    For a long time my favorite Kipling has been The Betrothed. I think it’s probably the official Kipling of the “women are exotic pets” society:

    Open the old cigar-box, get me a Cuba stout,
    For things are running crossways, and Maggie and I are out.
    We quarrelled about Havanas – we fought o’er a good cheroot,
    And I knew she is exacting, and she says I am a brute.

    Open the old cigar-box – let me consider a space;
    In the soft blue veil of the vapour musing on Maggie’s face.

    Maggie is pretty to look at – Maggie’s a loving lass,
    But the prettiest cheeks must wrinkle, the truest of loves must pass.

    There’s peace in a Larranaga, there’s calm in a Henry Clay;
    But the best cigar in an hour is finished and thrown away –

    Thrown away for another as perfect and ripe and brown –
    But I could not throw away Maggie for fear o’ the talk o’ the town!

    Maggie, my wife at fifty – grey and dour and old –
    With never another Maggie to purchase for love or gold!

    And the light of Days that have Been the dark of the Days that Are,
    And Love’s torch stinking and stale, like the butt of a dead cigar –

    The butt of a dead cigar you are bound to keep in your pocket –
    With never a new one to light tho’ it’s charred and black to the socket!

    Open the old cigar-box – let me consider a while.
    Here is a mild Manila – there is a wifely smile.

    Which is the better portion – bondage bought with a ring,
    Or a harem of dusky beauties, fifty tied in a string?

    Counsellors cunning and silent – comforters true and tried,
    And never a one of the fifty to sneer at a rival bride?

    Thought in the early morning, solace in time of woes,
    Peace in the hush of the twilight, balm ere my eyelids close,

    This will the fifty give me, asking nought in return,
    With only a Suttee’s passion – to do their duty and burn.

    This will the fifty give me. When they are spent and dead,
    Five times other fifties shall be my servants instead.

    The furrows of far-off Java, the isles of the Spanish Main,
    When they hear my harem is empty will send me my brides again.

    I will take no heed to their raiment, nor food for their mouths withal,
    So long as the gulls are nesting, so long as the showers fall.

    I will scent ‘em with best vanilla, with tea will I temper their hides,
    And the Moor and the Mormon shall envy who read of the tale of my brides.

    For Maggie has written a letter to give me my choice between
    The wee little whimpering Love and the great god Nick o’ Teen.

    And I have been servant of Love for barely a twelvemonth clear,
    But I have been Priest of Cabanas a matter of seven year;

    And the gloom of my bachelor days is flecked with the cheery light
    Of stumps that I burned to Friendship and Pleasure and Work and Fight.

    And I turn my eyes to the future that Maggie and I must prove,
    But the only light on the marshes is the Will-o’-the-Wisp of Love.

    Will it see me safe through my journey or leave me bogged in the mire?
    Since a puff of tobacco can cloud it, shall I follow the fitful fire?

    Open the old cigar-box – let me consider anew –
    Old friends, and who is Maggie that I should abandon you?

    A million surplus Maggies are willing to bear the yoke;
    And a woman is only a woman, but a good Cigar is a Smoke.

    Light me another Cuba – I hold to my first-sworn vows.
    If Maggie will have no rival, I’ll have no Maggie for Spouse!

    Long ago I posted it on LJ about how much men should value women…some anonymous poster had the courage to call me an asshole. Still have some pride in that.

  • http://photoncourier.blogspot.com david foster

    Herb…something missing from your above comment

  • Richard Aubrey

    I have never figured out whether Maggie gave him an ultimatum. Lips that touch tobacco will never taste mine.
    Ultimata are deal-breakers.

  • Herb

    @David

    Opps, yeah, it’s an Iron Maiden song.

  • http://4stargazer.wordpress.com/ Anacaona

    @Herb
    Heh very good parody although he/she is missing “My thriving manhood” I like that one :p

  • Herb

    @Ana

    I’d post a link but the only location I know is on FetLife and you’d need an account (which are free but I don’t think it’s your thing).

    I picked that particular paragraph (out of 15 or so) for the bad grammar part.

    I’ve seen all three books in B&N and Target. I didn’t check to see if they’ve been edited.

  • J

    I went to STEM Central University in Boston (actually, Cambridge, for the sticklers), and currently work in Silicon Valley, and by and large, nerd boys don’t pursue “alpha” chicks. The times that it happens, it tends to be the more “alpha” nerd guys, but that is a very small group. May I inquire if you’ve been watching too much “The Big Bang Theory” on TV ?

    Actually I love that show ;-)

    The Jacqueline story is a true one though. (I’m referencing a comment I made on the “50 Shades of Gray” thread about my being passed over by a nerd boy forf an alpha girl.) The guy in it was not a STEM major, but more the type who would have ended up a professor in a liberal arts field. To tell the truth, I can’t say that I attracted a lot STEM guys (with the exception of a science TA I almost married) or even saw much of them in college. It was a big campus, and it was laid out with liberal arts on one end in the older buildings and STEM further away on the edge of campus in newer buildings. It made for a sort of segregated campus. There wasn’t a lot of mixing.

  • Cooper

    Who has watched Girls’ episode 2?

    It was very interesting.

  • J

    @Joe

    Nerd-girl seems to be something like the bookish quiet type who’s a little goth, reads poetry and smokes in high school, and follows up by majoring in Gothe, Nitche and indi music/cinema in college (but I’m guessing about that.

    I suppose I was the 70s equivalent of that. Long hair parted in the middle, black turtleneck sweaters, blue jeans or black tights under a skirt. Intellectual and artsy, not quite a loner, but a bookish introvert.

    @Cooper

    I don’t think nerdgirls are necessarily unattractive, but they certainly aren’t social butterflies who dress to attract attention.

  • J

    @Kirk

    They ran away before I could flag down a cop.

    :-(

    I did manage to file a report, though.

    Good! They have probably done it before and they’ll do it again. This will increase the chances of getting caught.

    While I’m not one to believe in pseudoscience, I often feel that I emit an aura that brings out the worst in women.

    At the risk of sounding callous, if you have an awareness of that, it’s probably true. When I was in high school, I was the victim of some unprovoked attacks from some female bullies. I somehow looked like a victim. I changed mylook and body language a bit, and the bullying stopped. If this sort of thing happens to you often, there might well be something in the way you look or carry yourself that makes you look like an easy mark.

  • J

    @Jackie

    I agree with J (as I do just about always– J is awesome, too),

    Thanks, sweetie. That’s so nice of you!

    @Ana

    I read “The Red Tent” over ten years ago, so I don’t recall how far I got into it. I do remember that the virginity ritual scene, for which there is no historical or anthropological model, really offended me. At that point, I realized that the author had her own agenda–proving a matriarchal Hebrew culture that never existed. I may have quit at that point, but I honestly don’t remember.

    @OTC

    I hear you. It’s funny but classical good-looking and sexy don’t always equate with men. Many of the movie stars that other women regard as gorgeous–Brad Pitt, Leo Di Caprio–are too pretty for me. My husband has a nice blend of rugged and pretty features–big brown eyes in Roman coin sort of face, heavy beard. One of the sexiest guys I know, however, has sort of leonine features, a bald head and a goatee. He looks vaguely like Ben Kingsley with a better nose.

    @Cooper

    Yeah, I saw “Girls” last night. It was amazingly realistic in its depiction of that lifestyle. I liked it. I think it’s the anti-SATC; it’s a cautionary tale.

  • Iggles

    Finally saw Girls. I found it entertaining and would definitely check out more episodes. All in all, taking it with a grain of salt I found the characters and their situations pretty humorous.

    Honestly, I don’t think Adam is that bad. He’s rude, clueless, and immature but he doesn’t strike me as Machiavellian (come on, that chick was talking too much!). He’s living in the moment and is clearly not that into the main girl — definitely a FWB arrangement without any real friendship or emotional connection — and for some reason Hannah (that’s her name right?) seems content for to fight for the scraps of his attention. She’s trying to force it to become something more, but if she was honest with herself she wouldn’t be closing her eyes to the things about him she doesn’t want to see.

    That said, there’s no way I’d personally date Adam. In my opinion, he’s a loser but honestly, so is Hannah right now. They both have a lot of maturing to do before either is ready for something more serious. On a sidenote: As a 20-something college grad living in NYC, Adam’s grungy brooklyn apt made me laugh! Reminded me of friends’ lofts! (Though, I gotta say, it also highlights why Adam is a sad character in my eyes. He has no idea what he’s doing with his life, and while I know a lot of Gen Y kids are in the same boat I’m so glad not to be there with them! I figured out my life goals early and have worked to cross them of the list ;-)

    As for Charlie, I thought the actor was cute! However, him and the girlfriend are a total mismatch. His supplicating behavior would turn most girls off, but I really do think that there is someone for everyone. The girlfriend needs a guy who is more dominant, and would challenge her instead of pedastalizing her. I don’t think that a bad thing! — It just means she needs a man with a different temperament for the relationship to be balanced. I know from experience, girls can get resentment when we’re forced to take on a more dominate role than we’d like due to the guy’s lack of leadership. (Perfect example – Her: What turns you on?, Him: Whatever turns you on, dear)

    Anyway, final thoughts – I’m glad Adam wasn’t cast as some WB Hunk. He’s awkward looking and I think it’s refreshing. I hope they continue casting more realistic looking actors, and I would love to see more diversity in characters as the series goes on. (I live in NYC. My social circle is like a Benetton ad. I don’t think that’s an anomaly for people my age.) Gotta say, the random homeless man at the end of the episode was priceless. So very New York!

    • http://www.hookingupsmart.com Susan Walsh

      @Iggles

      I agree with everything you said. I especially love that the show is cast with realistic actors. I found Adam physically unattractive, but he was funny, and his SMV went up even as I was watching. When he tells her, “You’re not that fat anymore, you should have those tattoos lasered off,” I cringed. But it struck me as quite realistic. He’s not pretending anything. She’s there of her own accord. In fact, she’s initiating! He’s just going along for the ride.

  • OffTheCuff

    Hey, don’t get all mad now, Sex and the City was a positive role model for young women! http://cliqueclack.com/tv/2012/04/23/hbo-girls-premiere/

  • http://4stargazer.wordpress.com/ Anacaona

    I read “The Red Tent” over ten years ago, so I don’t recall how far I got into it. I do remember that the virginity ritual scene, for which there is no historical or anthropological model, really offended me. At that point, I realized that the author had her own agenda–proving a matriarchal Hebrew culture that never existed. I may have quit at that point, but I honestly don’t remember.

    I had noticed that people remember what they hate the most about a book/movie/work of fiction than anything else so that explains the rest. I actually didn’t liked that either but I didn’t though anything dark out of it. ..I guess you didn’t liked the book Did God had a wife either for similar reasons.

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