Sunday, August 12, 2007

A Great Mystery, Finally Solved

I have a few Achillies' heels (don't we all) but the one that certainly haunts me the most is the fact that I've never married nor have I had children. In a world filled with couples-- couples with children, couples without children, couples' vacations, tables for two, bicycles built for two, articles about raising children, articles about keeping your marriage hot, articles about retiring with your spouse and buying a vineyard in Napa (see Fine Living Magazine)-- being perpetually single has certainly cast a pall over my life.

As I've mentioned to my sisters and my Mom, being a forty-something single chick in this world tends to make one feel like a complete freak.

I try not to think about this subject too much or analyze it too deeply, because when I do, it becomes too depressing to chew on for very long. Overly self-critical to begin with, I find myself shooting into hyper-criticism mode when ruminating over my single state. This is not what I need. Consequently, my thoughts on the subject are fleeting and the "problem" never gets solved.

But this weekend I had a breakthrough, thanks to the fabulous Melissa Lafsky at Freakanomics:

"Picking up women has been getting plenty of press these days, leading up to this week’s premiere of the VH1 reality show The Pick-Up Artist. The show follows eight “socially inept” men through an eight-week boot camp on seduction techniques, led by a self-proclaimed Lothario called “Mystery.” The headliner (whose real name is Erik Von Markovik) initially found fame after being profiled in Neil Strauss’s 2005 book The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists, and went on to co-write his own book, How to Get Beautiful Women Into Bed: The Mystery Method.

"Under particular discussion is a pickup technique that Mystery advocates known as “negging” — a move that involves interjecting an insult during an initial conversation with a woman. The motivation behind the insult is, as Esquire’s A.J. Jacobs puts it, to “lower her self-esteem, thus making her more vulnerable to your advances."

Melissa does not condone negging, but plenty of guys left comments after reading her online article, and many agreed that negging almost always works. I didn't know this! I didn't even know it had a name! As the recipient of this approach, I've found the key to the greatest mystery of my lifetime-- why I've never been married.

I've been such a fool. The two times (that I remember clearly anyway) I've been the recipient of negging, I was mistakenly throwing away the possibility of a lifetime of happiness with a man I could truly love and who in turn would love me!

First Negging Example:

Standing in line to get into a nightclub, a guy behind me tapped me on the shoulder and said, "Nice pants. Are you wearing underwear?"

"You're an idiot," I answered.

See, had I known he was negging me, I would have hung around him all night hoping he'd ask for my phone number. We probably would be buying that vineyard in Napa right about now if I'd not given him a verbal slap.

Second Negging Example:

I stepped into an elevator containing a man, who turned to me and said, "You're such a beautiful woman-- it's a shame you smoke."

"Is that supposed to be a fucking compliment?" I snapped.

Now I wish I'd ridden up to the top of the building with this guy so I could have tried to get to know him better. He and I would have had a lovely destination wedding to Sandals Resort, had I just known.

Those boys in kindergarten who hit you because they liked you? They grow up to become men that turn their negging skills onto you. Just like a laser beam of love.


p0nk said...

one more example of how asshole men end up with the ladies, and why i always go home alone. Something is seriously wrong with society.

Anonymous said...

Ok I HAVE to put in my 2 penny's worth on this, SINCE I do know both sides of the track.

Many years ago I was out with some of my guy friends (thats a funny concept in itself, Guys don't have boy friends, they have guy friends or buddies)

Anyway, these two guys ALWAYS had the girls around them and always seemed to date. I on the other hand was single and lonely (good reason as I analyse this now). They told me the trick was to treat women like "shit" and they proved it to me. I could never do that, and never did. There was No way in hell I was ever going to treat a woman like shit, just so I could get into her pants.

Now move ahead to the now days. I am now female (wow what insight I have). I have had a few guys hit on me and the funny thing is, all of them were very respectful to me when they hit on me. I have no idea if they knew that I was born male and was now female, but hey, does it matter? Only 1 guy did the negging on me and that negging was (oh and he was young and claimed to be a Dr. but with the way he was dressed I had my doubts. He came up to me, put his hand on my back and said, "Your such a pretty woman, be proud of yourself, Your shoulders are all slumped and I can fix that for you"! well maybe not the best negging, but I guess it is negging. Personally if a guy says something negative to me, he may get a 3" spiked heeled boot stomping on his little snake.

They man in my life, treats me with respect and dignaty and TJ if I was still a guy, I would treat you that way, but then again, I was a nice guy and nice guys finish last.

I'm happier as a female.

No wonder the Native Americans though of people like me as GODS, we see both sides.


T-Bone said...

p0nk: Honey, just you wait. You're gonna get a really nice girl that will love you something awful. You don't sound like the type of person who would necessarily enjoy bagging one of those "ladies" who respond favorably to Neggers.

'Laney: as usual, you see both sides! There is a silver lining to your sitch after all. Could we start calling Mikey "Mystery"? Ack. As if he deserves such an enigmatic nickname. I think maybe we'll stick to "The Amazing Weasel Boy."

Meeg said...

"Negging" -- what jerks! You have to wonder whether all the men who employ this despicable move are just looking for a one night stand or if some of them are looking for something more serious. It's hard to imagine telling your future grandchildren about how grandma and grandpa met: "He said the dress I was wearing made me look dumpy, and it was love at first sight"

T-Bone said...

Meeg, I agree. I am truly mystified that this works, let alone that some poor fool responds favorably to the Negger. I have no idea why a woman would like that approach. I think it's just awful.

Anonymous said...

Here is my favorite article on Mystery, the douche du jour, and his mad pickup skills. You can read all about negging and how men in the know get great results when they use it. I would just hit him and pour a drink on his stupid hat. The guy is such an ass clown. -- the Redhead

p.s. You are awesome, with or without a man.

p.p.s. I hate Fine Living.