There’s a phenomenon that’s taken place ever since the book, “The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists” was first published in 2005. The Game was written by Neil Strauss and is a book about his journey of transformation into his Pick Up Artist (PUA) alter-ego "Style," as guided under the tutelage of “Mystery” – also a self-proclaimed Pick Up Artist.
You can now find hundreds of forums and websites dedicated to PUA teachings; teachings that advocate sociopathic behavior and thinking processes in men. And The Game itself goes a little something like this. . .
You see, in this Pick Up Artist process, the man is basically instructed to emotionally manipulate the woman and walk her, like a dog, through a roller coaster of three stages that are all designed to weaken the woman by undermining her value in order to make her more vulnerable - to sex. Because naturally, after the man swoops in there looking like a circus side-show act and pays more attention to all of the other women in the group and then insults and ignores the girl he’s really interested in – he then moves into Phase Two: the “Comfort” phase – where he provides the neglected, insulted woman a shoulder to cry on and attempts to lift her back up so that he looks good. (Awe, how chivalrous of him.)
Once he’s undermined his intended target’s self-esteem and self-confidence, he is then instructed to move into Phase Three: Seduction. This phase basically involves charming the woman with a bunch of bullshit so that he comes off looking like some kind of savior and the woman is so grateful to finally receive the man’s withheld attention that she just can’t help herself and she jumps right into bed with him.
It’s basically a roller coaster process of “deconstruction” – tearing a woman down (negs), then lifting her up (comfort) and then pouncing when she's in this confused, weakened state (seduction). Sound familiar gals? (I imagine alarm bells are ringing in your head right now.) This emotional manipulation process is meant to affect the woman’s self-confidence and make her weak. It’s meant to turn women into easy prey or VC’s – Victim Chicks – as coined by Pick Up Artists.
There are 3 main components to the Pick Up Artist’s tactics:
And then each of those 3 components is then broken down into 3 separate steps for a combined total of 9 steps. That’s a pick up artists total investment ladies – 9 steps, otherwise known as “The Mystery Method” (PDF).
And believe it or not, this step by step process was first created as a way to aid the cartoon character known as Mystery (Erik James Horvat-Markovic) in his day job at the time – that of a professional magician (shocking, I know).
In all honesty though, what else could you expect from a group of men with names like Mystery, Spoon, Sin, Kosmo, Matador, J-Dog and Style? Are these male strippers? Are they members of the Chippendale Dancers? No. “Style” is actually Neil Strauss, author of The Game. Not only are these cartoonish characters advised to dress like circus side-show acts, they are also instructed to name themselves as such.
And what do these buffoons consider “the ultimate challenge?” A stripper - yes, a stripper. A woman who sheds her clothing in exchange for money is somehow considered the ultimate challenge to these men. Seriously, how hard is it to get a stripper to disrobe for you? (No disrespect to any of you female dancers out there, I realize you’re simply earning a living and most likely trying to care for your children, but it is what it is.) The simple fact is – all it takes is money – dah, it’s their job. Yet somehow, these cartoonish fella’s consider this a real challenge? A woman who sheds her clothing for money is a real challenge? A woman whose personal boundaries are already much less than that of a woman who is not used to doing this easily or regularly – is a challenge? A woman whose inhibitions are much less than that of a woman who isn’t as comfortable disrobing for a man – is a challenge?
The Language of a Pick Up Artist
Now let’s take a look at some of their language; a language all its own, yet one that can give you a real glimpse into the mindset of a Pick Up Artist:
Neg, Negging – A backhanded compliment meant to insult the woman. Stunts similar to the ole’ “who is this” response from a woman’s communication attempt, where the man pretends he’s deleted the woman’s number but knows full well who’s contacting him. (Know this ladies, a player/PUA will NEVER delete a woman’s number as he associates the amount of female contacts in his smartphone with his masculinity – in spite of the fact that the rest of society does not). And how these men feel that insulting a woman and decreasing her overall value as a human being is a feeling that she will want more of, I’ll never know.
Peacocking – A tactic that makes you stand out above the rest (because you look like a freak). This basically includes “props” such as a fuzzy hat, goggles, fuzzy jackets, brightly colored clothing, a goofy necklace (preferably one that lights up), fuzzy pants – lots of fuzz, feathers, fur and outlandishness will do.
PUA – Pick Up Artist (I’d like to spin a female take on this one. PUA – Stinky (PU) Ass. Thanks Gemini50 ;-)
IOI – Indicator of Interest
AFOG – Alpha Female of Group
AMOG – Alpha Male of Group (naturally, a big adversary to the PUA).
AK – AMOG Killer (BOOM, my charisma will kill you!)
Set – The “stage” of the situation, as in “theatrical production” – ready on the set ladies!
ASD – Anti-Slut Defense (when a woman attempts to convince you she’s a nice girl, because naturally, any woman that is comfortable with her sexuality is instantly deemed a slut and, therefore, needs an anti-slut defense).
AI – Approach Invitation (a smile, eye contact, etc.)
BHRR – Bait, Hook, Reel, Release (basically, the disappearing man; the ole’ “sweep her off her feet” and then POOF, he’s gone method).
BAFC – Below Average Frustrated Chump
AFC – Average Frustrated Chump
BS – Bitch Shield (naturally, this is an unapproachable woman - because any woman who’s smart enough to see past this charade MUST be a bitch – she’s not intelligent, she’s simply a bitch. I know another meaning for BS - Bullshit).
BD – Boyfriend Destroyer (because a PUA erroneously believes that the fastest way to success is through bad intention).
CR – Canned Routine (need I say more?)
CP – Comfort Plan (“There, there, it’ll be alright. I’ve decided that I suddenly like you; put your head in my lap and it’ll all be okay dear.”)
DHV – Demonstration of Higher Value (similar to a marketing/PR campaign).
DDBL – Doggy Dinner Bowl Look (a compliant woman, “Please, please, please pick me.” *Sad eyes*)
DTF – Down To F*ck (the PUA’s entire goal.)
EE – Eject and Explain (When you’re getting nowhere so you bail, “I'm outta' here, my friends are leaving; catch me later.” I’d like to add my own spin on this one, ladies. Eject and Explain – Prematurely “eject” and then attempt to “explain your shortcomings” away.)
Fatty (Tuna) – A woman who doesn’t look great, but is still doable of course.
FGOP – Fat Girl Overhead Photo (creates an illusion of being thin, because naturally, it’s only looks that truly matter to a PUA).
FTOW – Find and F*ck 10 Other Women (wishful thinking and a fast track to the free clinic for treatment of all of the STD’s you’re also going to “Pick Up” along the way. Hey, I’d like to coin a phrase myself, “DD - Dirty Dick.”)
SDL – Same Day Lay
STMD – Sealing the Mother Effing Deal
SNL – Single/Same Night Lay
VC – Victim Chick (the need for the use of this terminology says it all).
WPU – Work Pick Up (shared place of employment)
ZNR – Zero Night Stand (immediate casual sex).
Okay ladies, disgusted yet? Regrettably, there’s more, much more - a full list of this crap, “849 terms and counting.”
So just how far does this false illusion of “awesomeness” go? Oh my Lord ladies, you’d be surprised at just how deep it goes.
Don’t believe me?
Take a look at Neil Strauss here, Author of The Game, err. . .my bad, take a look at “Style,” Author of The Game, in this “after and before” shot. The left is the “illusion” and the right is the “reality.”
Now do you see why there’s a need for a fake getup, an alter ego identity and a bunch of schmuck tactics that only work on insecure women? Now do you see the need to prey on the weak and single them out from the pack? The need stems from a complete lack of self-confidence. And the fact is, I’m quite sure there’s more than one woman out there who would’ve accepted this man for exactly who he was had he just worked on his social skills as a human being - instead of caving to low self-esteem and creating an entirely false identity to hide behind.
Which then begs the question, how long can one keep up this charade? Not long as inconsistency, insecurity and false bravado will eventually give way to truth.
I feel sorry for men using these tactics because what they don’t realize is that these tactics only work on insecure women with low self-esteem – like attracts like, folks. And are those REALLY the women men want to date? Are insecure folks with low self-esteem really the folks that ANYONE wants to date, male or female? I realize we all have insecurities, it’s a human condition. However, when you let them guide you, guide your decisions in life and your perception of yourself – you end up with this.
These tactics basically leave men to “slum it,” deep in the depths of the dating ghetto, down in the bottom of the barrel, trolling the clubs and bar scenes for the perfect - Victim Chick (VC). These tactics advocate victimizing women and exploiting their nature – predator versus prey. One of these Pick Up Artist idiots even has what he calls a "rape van." It's crystal clear that these are mentally damaged individuals.
And many of the techniques pick up artists advocate are shameless yet completely obvious once you’re onto them. For instance, many of the online Pick Up Artist forums and chat rooms advocate that men ask random beautiful women in public, complete strangers, to take a photograph with them (be sure to point at the camera so you look cool). Advocating that "Women will find you more attractive, than if you were with a group of guys." That way, the man can then display these images online and give the false illusion that he’s pulling some awesome tail in the real world.
By the way, yes, that's Mystery in the image, furry hat and all.
The Game also advises men to compliment women on things like shoes and handbags as a way to look appreciative of the ways and efforts of women. I don’t know about you ladies, but if a man ever complimented me on my shoes or handbag, I’d secretly be wondering if he was 1.) homosexual or 2.) a closet cross-dresser 3.) married. I mean really, why else would a man be well-versed in women’s fashion? For me, that’d be a big red flag and a sign of a man that’s trying way too hard.
Pick up Artists also wrongly advocate seducing married women and women in relationships. In otherwords, they advocate setting out with bad intention – to break up marriages and relationships, simply to “prove” something to themselves; to prove that they can do this, which in and of itself signals low self-esteem is present in these men because insecure men always feel the need to overcompensate (macho) for their lack of confidence by proving things to themselves for no apparent reason other than – to make themselves feel better about themselves.
Confident men do not feel the need to prove themselves to anyone. Confident men don’t need a “prop” to garner a woman’s attention because it’s their masculine, leading energy that garners all the attention they need. Confident men have the skills necessary to please women, sexually, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. Confident men have honed social skills and respectful dating skills and don’t have a need for manipulative tactics.
And many men agree that confidence is key. Here is “Magic” explaining why negs are NOT the way to win a woman over. As much as I hate his name and his overall persona, I have to agree with him that undermining one’s value is not a recipe for success, nor is it going to make a woman want to spend any significant amount of time with a man:
The Game is all about sex. It has nothing to do with real relationships, genuine human interaction or true bonding. Nor does it teach men how to be good lovers. I’d bet my bottom dollar that these PUA’s haven’t a clue what to do with a woman once they actually get her undressed, other than permit themselves to be serviced in some crude manner so as to take the pressure of performance off of themselves and place it squarely on the woman’s shoulders.
The Game teaches men absolutely nothing about what it takes to make (and keep) a real woman happy and standing by a man’s side.
It’s no real "Mystery” – it’s a loser’s game.