I will do a longer post and review on this topic, so I won’t reveal the source book now, but let this serve as an enticement:
The first thing you say to a woman matters very little. Some guys tell me they can’t think of anything or they need a really good line. I tell them they are thinking too much…
"How are you?" I asked.
That is one of my usual openers. Just something you hear every day from the grocery store clerk. 95% respond with a one-word, noncommittal answer: "fine" or "okay". Three percent with enthusiasm: "great" or "super". Those are the ones you learn to stay away from — they’re nuts. And two percent respond with an honest, "Terrible. My husband just left me for his yoga teacher’s receptionist. How fucking Zen." Those are the ones you love.
And here are some assorted links that passed through my brain today:
- What happens when a college commits an act of heroism and doesn’t give in to U.S. News and World Report‘s college ranking game? Easy: U.S. News simply makes up data.
- Schooled by American Idol: "American Idol reflects a tension between a self-esteem-obsessed culture devoted to the validation of individual achievement and a hunger for genuine standards. The judges, like teachers throughout the education system, learn to walk that line."
- Is The Economist a "pseudo-intellectual con job, based on Anglophilic snobbery and Oxbridge-style swagger"?
- Does the kind of music you listen to reveal something about your personality?
- The Art of Non-Pitching a VC – You don’t, really, need their money. Or at least that’s what you need to say. (A helpful psych technique in other situations, too.)
6 comments on “Quote of the Day and Assorted Links”
The Observer’s criticism of “The Economist” is a classic example of spurious argument. What it does is dissect a particular issue of the Economist and draw attention to the various imperfections contained within.
Proving that something is flawed is altogether different than proving that something is worse than the alternatives.
I can easily point out hundreds of flaws with the United States. That doesn’t mean that the country is therefore inferior to the alternatives and unworthy of imitation.
You’re learning how to pick up women now?
The quote is from The Game by Neil Strauss, a somewhat (in)famous book on the Pick-Up Artist subculture. But it’s actually from the only chapter not written by Strauss but by a guy named Juggler. I actually remember that chapter very well because I found it to be the most entertaining and insightful part of the book.
Ben, I’m genuinely interested in what you think of both the book and the Pick-Up Artist’s world. I’m especially interested in how you see the connections between the PUA and the “raunch feminism” you’ve critiqued a couple of times here. I have some more thoughts but I’ll wait to post them when you do your full review.
I have to disagree with Chris Yeh and side with the New York Observer article. When I first became familiar with the Economist a few years ago (I am in college now), I was enthralled by its wide-ranging coverage of world events. However, now that I have a subscription and read it pretty regularly, I have become increasingly disappointed. It seems to be a decent news service, but there is little serious analysis. The Observer article hits the nail on the head. Weakly supported opinions mingle with decent reporting. When I pick up the Economist, I do not expect to find many thought-provoking insights. I think I will probably switch to an online subscription to WSJ sometime soon. Or just read blogs like Marginal Revolution.
When I was in my early twenties I wasn’t satisfied with my efforts at meeting women, so I determined to do better. Basically, it came down to talking to them.
I hadn’t realized that I had succeeded until a friend in law school commented that he had seen me just walk up and talk to all kinds of women. I internalized it by then.
I always told my friends that the best ‘pick-up’ line was “Hi, my name is…” and then, yeah, I guess “how are you?” After that. After you get the hang of it, it becomes more fun trying to meet interesting people. Beautiful women often don’t get talked to that much because people are afraid to approach them (unfortunately their beauty is no gaurantee of good conversation).
Whenever I was intimidated to approach a woman, I just reminded myself that I’d rather get brushed off than stew about not trying later. (ultimately my biggest motivator)
I haven’t read any books about it, but I think the K.I.S.S. approach works best. Plus, even if you’re introverted, it gets kind of easy after a couple of rejections.
PS – Limit your alchohol intake. No one wants to deal with a drunk guy they don’t know.
I was at a conference last week, and a colleague and I realized that being a good networker is just like being a good pick-up artist. So for anyone intending to mock Ben for wanting to meet girls, I’d suggest that perhaps he’s just becoming a better networker (if that’s possible since he’s pretty good already).
I’ve been tempted to write a post about this topic (ever since I read the book), but perhaps Ben will beat me to it.