The more perceptive readers of this blog will have noticed a lack of posting since I stated that I was about to dive headlong into the crazy, mazy world of internet dating. Well, the two things are not just coincidental- because it takes a lot of time to play the game that is Dating via the Internet. However, I think I have managed to come to some conclusions about this particular method of attempting to find a life partner, a date or even a casual relation. And being the sort of chap I am, I just have to tell someone all that I have learned.
Before plunging into the story of my time on various websites (or ‘Disasters in Dating’ as it is known to various people) I need to go back in time and describe the experience I had of reading a book called ‘The Game’: It is an expose of the sub-culture of men who are ‘Pick Up Artists’ (or PUAs as you just knew they would call themselves). These men frequently judge their worth in life by the number of telephone numbers they can collect in an evening out. The more successful then judge themselves by the number (or sometimes the quality) of women that they have sex with. I was given this book and told to read it- which I duly did. The book was a fairly popular and on the New York Times bestseller list, but as I read I was revulsed by the way these men had broken down meeting, conversing and even bedding women into a process. And worse than that, it was a process that other men could pay to learn. It honestly made my skin crawl to read this and I felt embarressed and ashamed of my gender and the way it would manipulate people simply to get a phone number, steal a kiss or even get laid.
However, at least according to the book, many of these men were now much more successful with women and I was resolutely single. But I refused to try to learn the techniques as they were often, quite frankly, mean. Then a few weeks ago I was using Facebook and one of the adverts promised to explain the ’10 Most Common Mistakes that Men Make with Women’ (and who says that Facebook can’t target an audience with its ads!). Well, I was at home and had no fear of the consequences of clicking on a link, so I followed the hyperlink. I read through the list of 10 mistakes and they seemed to make sense- in fact I could see that I had made some of the mistakes. Wow, this seemed like the magic potion I needed to successful with the opposite, so I read who had written these 10 magic commandments. And somewhere, in the back of my mind a neuron fired and said “Hang on, you recognise that name” But where had I come across this all knowing author?
Yup, he was one the characters in The Game. Obviously I wasn’t going to subscribe to the website, after all, he and his like were the anti-Christ (and I don’t even believe in God). But now that I have been through the whole dating thing- I might grudgingly admit (though only on a bad day) that he and the other truly repulsive characters of The Game may have had a point after all. But that point is going to have to wait for another post