Mystery's show on VH1, The Pickup Artist, has gotten a lot of mainstream attention. As a result there are scores of people in that audience trying to wrap their minds around this whole "pick up thing".
I've read a few message boards where people are discussing the show, and almost universally trying to discredit the pick up. Why are people so against pickup? First instinct might be to assume that girls would be against it, but that guys would all be excited about it. Think about it - it promises to fulfill the #1 goal for nearly every man on the planet.
Here's what I think is happening.
There are two big categories of men who have problems with pickup. I'm going to talk first about the small group, and then about the bigger group.
The small group, which by definition are also an outspoken group, are the natural alpha-male types. They were discussing the show in the Tucker Max Forums, where a lot of these guys are. These are guys who have NEVER had problems with women. They naturally picked up enough attractive habits and qualities that they've never had long periods of time where they couldn't get girls. It's natural, and even correct, for them to hear about this stuff and say, "What kind of loser would need this? Getting girls is EASY. Why would you possible wear a stupid hat?"
While I don't necessary agree with their attitude, I don't have much of a problem with this group. Pickup isn't for them anyway. They already get it. Sure, we take their qualities, amplify it, and do it better than they do. We can appear natural if we want to, although going over the top is more effective. But the bottom line is that they're satisfied and don't need pickup to get girls. Fair enough.
The second group of haters are generally the worst section of society. I'm talking about the people who are so close minded that the solution to a problem can be thrust in front of their face and they'll look the other way. Unless an idea is force fed to them, foie gras style, they won't recognize it.
Pickup works. It's a fact that I've witnessed and lived. Done correctly, there is really no valid criticism against it. It is positive towards women. It is focused on self improvement. You don't become someone else, you become a better version of yourself. Pickup artists have gotten book deals, TV deals, and are collectively paid millions of dollars per year. Despite taking in the least attractive guys, we get very few complaints. Still, these people submit to their knee jerk reaction and believe, "Nope. That can't be real."
Most of the media caters to that very idea. Why? If the media became something that we had to THINK about, we'd be upset. As a society, we enjoy sitting in front of the idiot box and getting our beliefs fed to us. As long as the beliefs they feed aren't far away from what we already believe, we accept them as fact and move on. If they reported that pickup worked, every guy in America would have to think about his life and think about what it could be.
A friend of mine is the founder of one of the major pickup companies. He told me that a reporter came to do a story on him, but that it never got published. Why? The reporter later confessed to him that he was instructed to trash them, but refused to because he discovered that they were legit. His editor WOULDN'T ALLOW HIM to write positively about pickup.
I've found that the more I disregard public opinion and mainstream knowledge, the more success and happiness I've found. Following the mainstream is a great way to have a very average life.
I've got to write about this too, because the neg is the most misunderstood and most often criticized piece of pickup strategy. This is ironic, but still not surprising, since the neg might take up 5 seconds AT MOST of the entire pickup process, which often lasts for hours.
The media, as well as detractors from pickup, like to call the neg an insult. That's not what it is. There was recently a study by scientists, which was covered by the Freakonomics Blog, that discusses people insulting their partners. Steven Levitt, the author, calls this negging. It's not.
Here's what negging is, plain and simple. When you approach a woman, you are implicitly putting her on a pedestal. You're saying, "Because you're so beautiful and I'm just some average guy, I will make the effort to come talk to you." The neg is a quick jab not intended to lower her self esteem, but rather intended to let her know that you are confident enough to be yourself around her.
A classic neg is pretending to pick a piece of lint off her sweater. Does that make her feel bad about herself? No. It just shows that she's NOT on a pedestal, and that you'll treat her like a normal human being. It remedies the awkward imbalance of social power that comes with any interaction where you approach her.
I've never seen a neg described so well. I've always understood the purpose, but I've never been able to relate it to someone else without it sounding like a technique to lower someone's self esteem.
Its really too bad that most people are sheep. It hurts everyone, but no one so much as the sheep themselves, because they never get to live life to its fullest. it makes me sad.
Tynan! hey man hows it goin? this is the only way i know how to contact you...i haven't been working as much at the Daily Juice (I'm sure you've noticed). But i wanted to invite you and Todd to an art show that I've been organzing and curating. It's this saturday (17th) from 3-9pm. I hope you get this in time. If you're interested email me at: email@example.com...hope you're well and i hope it's ok that i've contacted you this way! miss seeing you guys! peace and love -bridget
There is a huge misconception about this. I met Mystery and he is a great guy and a very DRIVEN guy. He is a little eccentric but he's also a genius. What he is doing is helping guys to increase their own value in a way that propels them to new heights in their lives and as a great side effect they get women. Not only that, but their CHOICE of women. There's nothing negative or manipulative about it. Women play their games all the time and nothing is publicized about it. This is a way for men to even the playing field a little bit.
It can go both ways. I've read The Game and I've read Mystery's Method (both versions long and short) and I tell ya it's up to the person to take what they will.
Someone can either look at the elements of social engineering and manipulate an outcome or take the precepts of the game and better their lives.
I personally don't yearn for sex (read Extramask's de-virgining in the book) and that's how I've felt. The person I do connect with is Juggler as he is genuinely looking for a connection with a person.
Not a quick lay but a person. I genuinely search for a connection with someone on a human to human basis. Sharing one life experience to another.
The community gives the tools and processes to allow an outcome. Some people see lemons and some people will see lemonade short of a few steps.
To say that a "pick-up" in the singular comes about through more than manipulation or deception, or that it is about expressing yourself honestly, etc. is just incorrect. Nobody has ever ached to "get a female's opinion," or ask if "you see that fight outside." The pick-up may indeed be an art, but that does not make it the undeniable, most legitimate way to meet women that most here make it out to be. Many who post here argue that the Pick-up is about finding and building relationships, but those same people base their opinions on coming up with ways to meet women at bars. I don't have scientific proof, but I am willing to bet that for every life-long relationship started in a bar with published pick-up techniques, there are hundreds that don't make it to the next morning.
While Ryan may have come off as a dick, I have yet to read a compelling argument for the pick-up as more than a means to a short tryst, and for that I hope I hope to come off as as much of a dick to warrant a reasonable response.
there's a good side and bad side to the game just like Neil pointed out.
Ryan missed some points. It's not about manipulation and deceiving women but there are persuasion and influence tactics involved. But with anything in life there is some form of persuasion.
The good is men becoming better with women and accepting new roles and attitudes and adopting new behaviors. Otherwise you end up with depressed men with a bitterness towards women after their girlfriend dumps them and they find it hard to talk to another woman.
The bad I've seen from the community is the snobby and judgemental attitudes I've seen arise. Guys telling guys not to date anyone but 8's through 10's. Guys telling guys not to befriend fat girls because they lower your value. Guys giving guys tips on stealing or sleeping women in committed relationships. And guys referring to the majority of guys outside of the community as AFC! This in no way is helping men become better. It's only putting a black eye on the community. We don't need this. We need men to step up and be men, not boys pretending to be men. As much as I defend the community I also wont turn a blind eye to some of the darkness within. Good post though.
As I've been immersing myself in poker, I've been overwhelmed by the parallels with pickup, in theory, practice, and in my experience as a student.
I'm not sure if this is pure coincidence, my mind trying to find a pattern where there's not one, or a genuine underlying pattern that probably extends to other areas of learning.
Pickup is the only other thing I can think of that I learned rapidly and by immersion. I made it my world for a year or two. As a result, I remember the learning process, whereas something like web development I can't really remember because I've been learning gradually.
Picture is from this article on the cover of The Wall Street Journal's Marketplace section in 2004. Also see my more recent blog post with a video demonstrating how I find names & compose specific emails that work to get reporters' interest
In this post I'll spill the beans and tell you how I get really good press in outlets like TechCrunch, Mashable, CNET, CNN, CNBC, CSPAN, ABC, the WSJ (cover of Marketplace 7/04), Forbes, TechMeme, FastCompany, BBC, and literally hundreds of other publications.
Nothing I'm going to say here is so revolutionary that others couldn't figure it out yourself, but somehow I've figured out the details to make my formula work, and the magic really is in the details.
First off, let's think about what a reporter's daily life is like. Most reporters, from what they tell me, get several hundred emails a day. Many of those emails are from PR people spinning their latest client. So already it's hard to get their attention. And if you're just another one of those PR people, forget about it.