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"Sleep With Me" Article (2005) about Neil Strauss and "The Game"


posted by Donovan at 12:43 PM

Guys I put this in, as a note to those who just can't grasp such a concept as one we believe.

Former New York Times-man seeks to become a confident playa. So why does his book seem so desperate?
by Mike Seely from the Seattle Weekly

neil Strauss, pua, sex, pickup, seduction, sexualityHad Neil Strauss ended The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pick-Up Artists (ReganBooks, $28.95) after 146 pages, he'd have a wickedly economical book that's impossible to put down. Had it ended after 205 pages, it'd still qualify as a truly engrossing chronicle of a fascinating, misogynistic subculture of freaks and geeks who trade in their anime porn and eight-sided die for platform boots, feather boas, and dumb, hot chicks whom they manipulate through a labyrinth of head games that's extensively calibrated and hilariously termed (the glossary may be the 10 most entertaining pages).

But because Strauss drags The Game out to 437 pages, the book morphs into a grating, narcissistic Fight Club knockoff in which Strauss clumsily elevates his role from supporting playa to a sexual superstar who arrogantly proclaims, "I was no longer in the game to meet women; I was in the game to lead men." Gone is the likably self-deprecating journalist/nerd who can count the amount of lays he's had in his life on six fingers. Once he's elevated into the PUA (pickup artist) fellowship's hierarchy, he - and the book - become insufferable. Novice PUAs start shaving their heads and wearing goatees, eyeliner, and frilly shirts to mimic Strauss' signature "peacock" look. This all goes straight to Strauss' noggin, and The Game goes south.

That's a shame, because at the journalistically adroit outset of The Game, Strauss discovers a ruthless collection of sexual self-help gurus and pupils whose tactics border on date rape. Let's say a "sarger" (he whose sole purpose is to "sarge," or pick up chicks) walks into a bar and runs a "yes ladder" routine - a series of basic questions designed to elicit positive answers - on an attractive gal before identifying her "trance words" and changing locales for a little "time distortion." Over a quiet supper, he puts her in a state of waking hypnosis through a little NLP, or neuro-linguistic programming. Then he takes her home, fucks her, snaps his fingers, and calls her a cab before she realizes the depth of what's actually transpired. Is that really consensual?

This is where Strauss might have developed The Game into a serious morality study. But you go to press with the book you have, not the book you need. And, lest we forget, Strauss is a guy who willingly chucked his New York Times perch to pen celebrity blow jobs for Rolling Stone and ghostwrite books for porn star Jenna Jameson and Dave Navarro.

In short, Strauss is an unabashed starfucker, and the remainder of his book merely chronicles his attempt to transform himself into a trash-pop literary stud along the lines of Bret Easton Ellis. He brags about his conquests like a second-grader who just found out what the word "boner" means. After he shares the news of cadging his first menage a trois via "dual induction massage," Strauss claims "PUAs all over the world started having threesomes" after initiating rubdowns of their purported harems of bi-curious ladies.

How does Strauss verify this? He doesn't, really. He just takes similar accounts posted on Web sites at face value. Whether you believe these "field reports" - or, for that matter, Strauss' own sexual exploits - depends on whether you believe Penthouse Forum is the real deal or written by hired hands. I don't doubt that Strauss and his boys "number closed" (i.e., collected phone numbers) on a fair amount of club-hopping floozies. But he only seems to have "f-closed" a couple chicks, including a 19-year-old single mother who works at a Toronto Hooters. (Afterward, he's forced to baby-sit her son.) I suspect he and his PUA brethren - like Steve Carell's buddies in The 40-Year-Old Virgin - are prone to exaggerate the number of their conquests.

But then, The Game is not about women; it's about men. (When Strauss and his PUA buddies rent a Hollywood Hills mansion and sit together in the Jacuzzi sipping watermelon-based cocktails, he declares, "There were no girls, and we didn't need any to validate us. Tonight, it was just the boys.") And like a lot of guys intrigued enough to read his book, my reaction was, Sorry, Neil, you can't sarge me.

-For the record, I think he's a guy that wrote this... (Mike?) and the book is riveting till the end... I finished it last night -Donovan


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posted by Donovan at 12:43 PM Dating Advice for Men


Anonymous Anonymous said...

The funniest part of the whole article written by "Mike" is that in order for any reader to understand his OPINION fully, you must be or have been a part of this "underground subculture" It seems like "Mike" is putting down this subculture and anyone who is a part of it. The real funny thing is, that in order for him to make the comments he makes or even to understand his OPINION “Mike” must have been part of it. References he makes lead me to believe he has been part of it for years now. Mike you might be right on a few men’s reasons for joining this subculture, but I really believe you failed in grasping what it is all about yourself, and you must of never really got it! The ones who never do realize what it is all about will in the end bash and ridicule because they don’t get it.

It’s not about hypnosis, tricks, tactics, etc. It’s all about the person you are and how you portray it to the world. I have read many books on sales, and in these books they teach you tricks and tactics that help you get the right message across to your clients. Once you’re a beginner you rely on these training wheels, but as you get better you realize that its not about tricks and tactics its about how you get your message across about your product and about you. The advanced salesman fully graduates once he no longer uses the tips in tricks because it is natural he doesn’t sells himself.

Mike its ok if you never got it, you focused on the wrong thing, it’s not about the training wheels it’s about you dude! I can’t speak for everyone in this subculture because some of them never get it like you and they really believe it’s about tricks, even some people that claim they are “gurus” sell it as tricks, but no real PUA believes in tricks. They believe in the science of social interaction.

10:42 PM, January 01, 2006  
Blogger Donovan said...

I 100% agree, nice comment anonymous. I put this one in so people know "Just how he doesn't get it"

12:21 AM, January 02, 2006  
Blogger yana said...

i was just listening to the radio and it was an interview with neil strauss!!! i just wanted to say that. hmmmm.

3:33 AM, February 07, 2006  

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