Tuesday, January 31, 2006

picking up

I have been learning so much about dating. I think it really boils down to two things:

1. Confidence
2. Stamina

Last night, I was determined not to get wound up about CDave and his neither-here-nor-there email. He mentioned that his internet access was going to be limited, but I wrote him back instead of calling (I hate the phone, except to talk to my mother and make plans). I decided I would show a little more enthusiasm in my note and mentioned that I had a lot of fun on Friday and would like to do it again (interpret "it" as you will). I knew it could be a couple of days before I heard from him, and in the meantime I was keeping part of my weekend open, just in case.

In the pick-up community there is something known as "oneitis", which is when you get hung up on a single person. Sometimes oneitis leads to a relationship and other times it leads to a big wad of misery.

I felt the beginning symptoms of oneitis toward CDave appear, and I decided to take action to calm my neurotic little heart. I excercised. I meditated. I went back online and wrote to a couple of men. I have a date with a new one tomorrow. Oneitis symptoms cured.

This is where stamina comes in. Dating is, in some ways, like long-distance running. Things will go and go and go, uphill and downhill. Sooner or later, you may get a stitch in your side. You can give up at the first sign of discomfort or you can suck it up and run through the pain. Dating is all about running through the pain. If you get a little hurt and give up right away, chances are, you'll end up feeling depressed, jaded, and lonely. You also might close yourself off to potential romantic opportunities by giving up too soon.

Belive me, I've been there. I got worn out and busied myself with other social activities, proclaiming myself to be on a "break from dating". Now, I honestly believe that if a woman truly wants to find a man, whether to get a little action or find a boyfriend, breaks should be as infrequent as possible. You have to keep on going. Last week, I got two emails from guys rejecting me. If I didn't keep going, I wouldn't have had my awesome date with CDave on Friday, or my crazy make-out-filled Saturday night. A couple of weeks ago, my friends and I ended up at a party with no prospects. If we gave up, the night would have been a washout. Instead, I insisted we go to a bar. And when that bar didn't pan out, we went to another one. And another one. Finally, at the third bar we met hot guys.

This is where confidence comes in. When I say confidence, I mean in yourself and in your circumstances. If you want to find someone that will value you, you have to believe you're worth something to begin with. PUAs call this "inner game". In the same way that a woman can sense a loser vibe from a man, insecurity and desperation can be picked up by a man. That insecurity and desperation could cause a man to either exploit a woman's weaknesses, or ignore her altogether.

Today, I am pretty secure in myself. Ever since I got my ego together and realized my self-worth, my interactions with men have dramaticaly improved. But I don't don't only have confidence in myself, I have confidence in the fact that I will eventually meet someone who is right for me. In the meantime, I'm going to have as much fun as possible (which is a lot) and take whatever adventures life throws my way, instead of pining for The One. Saying "it's never going to happen to me" is easy during the low points, but you have to stifle those feelings if you are going to survive, especially in a city as tough as New York. And once you have that inner game going, you become more approachable. Who do you want to talk to, the depressed person scowling in the corner, or the happy person laughing in the middle of the crowd?

You might be wondering about all the PUA lingo. Well, ever since reading Neil Strauss's The Game and having my own encounter with a pick-up artist last week, I have become more and more captivated by these seduction communities. I have even started a list linking PUA blogs (check them out!). It's tempting to dismiss these guys as players who use evil tricks to get girls into bed. The fact is, if you scratch the surface and get past the pussy-chasing, there are some great techniques both men and women can employ, for dating, or even other aspects of life. Things like being able to start conversations with anyone and honing social skills, dealing with rejection, and making yourself a more charismatic person overall.

Women already employ some of these techniques, without even realizing it. For example, my friend gets a lot of attention when her hair is in braids. This is called "peacocking", a term that's used when personal appearance is altered in a way so as to be a conversation piece (in fact, the PUA I met was wearing a small watchface on a string like a necklace; had I not been too busy trying to expose him as a fraud, I would have commented on it).

I emailed Neil (aka "Style") to share my PUA story and tell him how much I enjoyed the book. I recently received a friendly reply. The PUG (pick-up guru) himself said,

It's not wrong to learn the skills of attraction, but it is wrong to lie to people, lead them on, misrepresent yourself, pretend to be something you're not, etc.

I couldn't agree more. It shouldn't be about manipulation, but self-improvement. Make yourself more engaging and then go out and engage people. Keep knocking down that doubt and all those other emotional hurdles.

Run through the pain and the pain disappears.


The Asian Playboy said...

Neil's a pretty good. I used to hang out with ProHo before it went down the toilet and went surfing with him.

The thing to consider, with Pick Up Techniques, it's like Wall Street. There's nothing NEW under the sun.

Everything that's being taught or given names was ALREADY being done by men and women.

When a woman goes out dressed, like you pointed out, very slutty, all in pink, high heel shoes, and cute Britney Spears type hat, she's peacocking.

And just like that guy in the center of the bar who has everyone entranced with his storytelling, he's "holding court" and DHVing (Demonstrating High Value).

The words may be new, but the techniques have always been there.

The Asian Playboy - Seducing Women to the Asian Way

darius451 said...

Confidence is a MASSIVE part of a woman's game. In my opinion, a confident woman presents the hardest target, but the greatest prize. When I enter a set, the confident, smartass AFOG is the one I always game to attract.

Great blog. keep it going.


Donovan said...

Nice blog. Love it.

William said...

Your posts get better with time, Dolly. There is a lot of wisdom in your writing and this one is the best so far.

I have now read The Game and I agree with you that pickup is about self improvement, not the exploitation of women. I agree also that pickup can be employed by women as well as men. Perhaps some enterprising female will start her own pickup web site dedicated to the seduction of men.

There is also a lot of wisdom in Neil Strauss. On page 342 (2nd Ed) he says "Beyond the attraction and lust, there were deeper feelings that few of us felt and none of us had mastered - feelings for which the heart and love are just metaphors." I couldn't agree more. But such feelings are not everyday occurrences. Mr or Miss Right may come along only once in a lifetime, the question is will we recognise them when they appear?

We now understand the difference between lust and love, but do we know the difference between possessive and non-possessive love?

The symbol for possessive love is the grasping hand with fingers hooked ready to take. The symbol for non-possessive love is the open hand inclined toward another in the act of gift. The direction of possessive love is inwards towards 'me' while non-possessive love points outwards towards 'other'.

Possessive love is beyond our control - we say we fall in love. But falling is an involuntary act which comes about through lack of concentration and poise. It's an accident, and often not be a happy one. Possessive love says "This is my love, my possession, and no-one else's and I will not share it with anyone." When that love is removed we feel bereft because we have become dependent on it. It's an addiction like any other and we feel withdrawal symptoms when it is no longer available. Romantic love is in this category.

Non-possessive love is something we have control over - we give it freely to those we consider worthy. We say "I love you because of the way you are and my love will continue even if it is not reciprocated." Because we are in control we are not dependent, and we cannot be hurt because we give love rather than take it. But non-possessive love attracts love, and it may not me non-reciprocated for long.

When you can do non-possessive love, you become aware of something else - something much more satisfying. You may meet someone in whose company you are so relaxed that, although they may be physically attractive, sex with them is the last thing on your mind. What you feel cannot be isolated as a response to physical (heart or loins) stimulation. You find you don't have to pretend with them anymore but, at the same time, they bring out the best in you. It's not romance - it's beyond that. It's a if you have some predefined destiny together. To me is the Prime Relationship which gives stability to our lives and from which we can go out into the world in search of variety.



William said...

Missed a bit. In too much of a hurry to publish.

I think you were right to contact CDave to tell him you would like to see him again. But, like you, he may be heavily into the dating game and not willing to devote himself to one person. This could work to your mutual advantage. If you and he can arrange to date regularly while seeing other people in between, you have the best of both worlds - variety and stability. You can throw your energies into finding other relationships safe in the knowledge that if all else fails you can rely on a regular "toe curl" say once a week. CDave then becomes just one Secondary Relationship among others until you both decide to upgrade. Now, I call that living the good life.

Cameron said...

>I agree also that pickup can be >employed by women as well as men.

Depending on what you mean, I vehemently disagree. Women who actively "pick up" are NOT valued by males - in general.

Dolly said...

I think it's interesting that you mention Wall Street, because I was going to use the same comparison myself. In both cases, you have a small segment of the population that has learned a skill most don't have. You can't hate a person for studying economics and learning to make money and you also can't hate a person for studying seduction and learning to attract people. Do you really think the techniques have always been there, though? A generation or two ago, the mating game was a lot more straightforward and there weren't that many people playing the field. I wonder if these strategies got refined with the sexual revolution, as people started experimenting more with personal relationships.

While confidence is crucial for a woman to have, I've noticed that being too dominant can turn a man off. It's all about striking that right balance and knowing when to let the guy take the lead for a while, right?

Why do I feel like you are trying to convert me to the land of the polyamorous? While I enjoy playing the field, ultimately I want to find someone (ONE) to settle down with and have a family. I think it's unfair for you to imply that monogamous people are not as evolved as the poly because they don't have the non-possessive love that makes it possible to have sex/relationships with multiple partners. That is not my style. When I meet someone I'm crazy about, I don't have the time or mental/emotional energy to devote to other romantic prospects. Ultimately, I don't want a once a week "toe-curl", I want a substantial, loving and trusting relationship with one man and one man only. You seem to have a lot to say on the topic, though; you should start a blog!

Vespertine said...

I love this metaphor, "running through the pain." This is some quality wisdom here. I take heed.

Now, on that note, and in response to Polyamourous Prosyltizing William (who is also preaching polyamory on my blog, and will now get his own pseudonym, "PPW") I have to address the method of "running through the pain". I think when I have been on a series of one-time dates, or even 2-time dates, the diversification method works swimmingly. However, get to date 4,5,or 8....you know, that zone just before you have "the talk", and dating lots of other people becomes a potential liability. This is the essential trust-building phase, so diversification dating is probably a bad idea.

Luckilly, there are other options. I think in the heat of all this date-seeking, we often forget that dating is not a hobby. Unless we develop ourselves in other ways, we will have nothing to talk about (and will wonder what to do with all of our free time) if we get into a monogamous thing. So, as an addendum, another way to run through the pain is to do anything that we love to do-- read, hang with friends, play your sport of choice....whatever, so long as we are growing our minds, and feeding our curiousity monkeys.

PPW, I understand that you would like to see social dynamics shift to a place where polyamory is the norm. Unfortunately, many of us have not transcended yet. I still get jealous, and moreover, I admit I kinda like it when a man gets a little (NOT a lot) possessive of me. Perhaps this is unenlightened, but it is valid. No amount of preaching is going to change this for me-- and frankly, I`m not sure I have the mental energy to have regular sex, nevermind, LOVE, more than one person.

Anyway, Dolly, I will happilly hand you a dixie cup o' water as you run your marathan. :)

William said...

OK, ok. I pushed too far on this one. "Polyamourous Prosyltizing William" will butt out. Good luck.

Dolly said...


I agree, lots of men are turned off by girls who try to pick up the guys. While I'll slip a guy my number from time to time or go into dominant mode and make an advance, for the most part, I try to let guys initiate. Females have to be a lot more subtle and make themselves available in a way where males are still doing their fair share of pursuing. It's nowhere near as straightforward as male PUA behavior.


You are so right. I remember times where I'd be going on three dates a week and guys would ask what I've been up to. I couldn't very well say, "I've been dating a lot." Meeting so many new people constantly can be very draining, too, which is why I can't do more than one or two dates a week now. And considering that I usually have as much/more fun with my friends or on my own, those are things I never want to neglect, either. (You know, I like it when a guy is a teeny bit possessive, too! Not to an unhealthy degree, but it makes me feel like he really values me and wants to protect me. Can't even remember the last time I encountered a guy like that...)

darius451 said...

You are exactly right on the confidence. When a woman is too cocky in the beginning, I always see it as form of arrogance. Cocky & funny is a whole different story. If you can be witty & confident, my pulse quickens w/every smartass remark. ;) This attitude communicates to me that you understand the game, and are secure with yourself---something so few women are.

BTW: I'm going to add you to my links. I know my blog isn't getting much 'action' so far, but your prospective on PUA is critical.

Dolly said...

Darius, you're right, so many women are insecure and unsure of themselves. I've discovered that a positive attitude and the right amount of sassiness can win over tons of guys. It's interesting, because it's the one part of attraction you can't teach another person, they have to develop that within themselves. Having a strong inner game makes it so that you don't even need a routine, because your interactions with people become naturally flirtatious and friendly.

Thanks for offering to link my blog. Hope you don't mind that I linked yours.

Tonic said...

I think it's important to point out that oneitis refers to one who is hung up on one who is uninterested in the other. There's nothing wrong with relationships in PU (anyone who says otherwise has lots to learn). One in a relationship would not be said to have oneitis for the other. It would be afterwards, if the relationship ends, and one is still clinging, that one would be said to have oneitis.

I've still got it a bit for my ex-fiancee of over 3 years; I don't think this is uncommon.

Dolly said...

Tonic, you're right, I should have clarified. Though, in my case, my oneitis did turn out to be a case where I was interested and he wasn't. Luckily, my oneitis turned out to be a 24-hour bug, and as soon as I kissed a few more boys, I was cured!

Shezzler said...

Great Blog, Great post - keep up the great work!

Sarge On...

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