The holidays are coming up: shit tests, comfort tests, and gifts [intermediate and above]

Everyone reading this should be familiar with shit tests and if you are not then quit this post and read. For 90% of guys, shit tests are a sticking point and this post is useless. For guys who’ve overcome most shit tests, however, comfort tests can be the bigger problem, especially for medium-term FWBs / lovers (relationship skills and pickup/seduction skills overlap some, but there’s a lot of space separating them… it is possible to be better at one than the other). A while ago I saw a post titled, “Be careful of being too Alpha, Comfort Tests are far more lethal than Shit-Tests.” Good advice.

The holidays can present comfort tests for guys with medium- or long-term FWBs (or even girlfriends). Guys who are focused on one-night stands or very short-term things can ignore this.

The comfort test is easy to fail by either doing too much (many guys) or too little (players). Gifts are an element of retention. When you first start banging girls you don’t have to worry too much about keeping them around, but over time the vast majority of women consciously or subconsciously want to “advance” their relationship with a good guy. Most women also bond with guys who are fucking them and giving them orgasms. This is doubly true if you’re going bare. (Almost no one talks about the overwhelming, primal intimacy of unprotected sex.)

Like I said, it’s easy to fuck up through doing too much comfort (if you are a novice at fucking hot women or more than one woman at a time, quit reading and get more experience). When I was way younger I had the bad habit of thinking that grand romantic gestures and gifts would endear me to women, because that’s what I saw in movies and read in novels. But when I tried grand romantic gestures in real life they totally flopped.

As a younger guy I had no idea why. Now I do. I used to think that the women didn’t like me. Now I know Women love romantic gestures but only from a guy they consider to be higher status than they are.

Women love romantic gestures that the woman has earned and achieved. Romantic gestures and gifts are trophies for her. She has vanquished other women, who are her romantic rivals, and she has won the heart of a hard-to-get man, who is finally willing to show his affection towards her in the form of a gift. All those other women have LOST, and she has won. What a sweet victory for her. Women love to compete too, just in domains that are adjacent to the ones where men want to compete.

I wouldn’t accept a judo black belt because I haven’t earned it. I wouldn’t accept a PhD diploma because I haven’t earned it. Women don’t really want gifts they haven’t earned. Of course they often will take free shit if someone foists valuable free shit into their hands, just like you probably would, but they might feel grimy about it. If they have any character, they will feel grimy about it (although they might still take it). Normal people know that almost nothing valuable is “free,” and valuable things that are “given away” have strings attached. When you give a woman unearned gifts, especially expensive ones, she thinks you’re trying to bargain for sex with material goods… and there is already a profession devoted to that practice.

Only use gifts to reward good behavior. Never use gifts as a bargain, to curry favor, or as a trade. Fucking you on a regular basis is good behavior that should be positively reinforced.

I’m sure many of you are about to write comments about how giving things to chicks is BETA. In the wrong circumstances, it is. In the right circumstances, it’s not. Context changes the perception of a given action. Guys at the start of their journey shouldn’t worry about this at all. Guys with regular FWBs might think about it.

Giving a gift, especially an unexpected gift, can be an element of what Tom Torero calls “contrast game.” Listen to the whole podcast, please, if you are at least intermediate level. A guy who is mostly aloof and does push-pull and is mostly focused on sex can improve his connection with a woman by sometimes (not often, but sometimes) doing the opposite.

Preferably unexpectedly.

The unexpected gift, especially from a guy she’s been casually seeing yet who she worries will not commit to her, will get her wondering, “What does this mean?” She may ask her girlfriends about what her mystery man could mean. She thinks he’s f**king other girls (he is) but he also gave her a necklace for Christmas. Does that mean he’s serious about her? That he likes her more than other girls?

And on and on. Think of it as the positive side of the hamster.

So if you have a woman you’ve been fucking somewhat regularly, consider getting her a small present for the holidays. Only give gifts to women you’ve been sleeping with semi-regularly. I’d say at least three times or for longer than a week, but there is no hard and fast rule. Whatever you do, DO NOT GIVES GIFTS TO WOMEN YOU HAVE NOT FUCKED. Not now, not ever. You will lower your own value in doing so and will decrease the likelihood you will ever f**k her.

I put this in all caps because guys who are skimming this and about to write a moronic rebuttal comment need to see it.

The gift shouldn’t be as expensive as possible; it is truly the thought that counts. A stuffed animal or bar of chocolate or inexpensive necklace will do. If she thinks she’s earned the gift, she will value it more than she will a $10,000 engagement ring or an expensive, fancy, uncomfortable dinner with a guy trying to buy her love and her sex. The best gift I ever got a girl was for a girl who loved pickles and so I got her some for her birthday.

For girls who’ve been around longer or more consistently, high-quality but inexpensive jewelry can be good. For example the company Diamond Foundry makes cultivated diamonds. I know and you should know that diamonds are bullshit but most chicks have been brainwashed and marketed into loving them anyway. Diamond Foundry will sell necklaces with real gold and real diamonds far cheaper than conventional jewelers. If you know a guy in the jewelry business (I do), he may also be able to help you buy pre-owned necklaces, which are far cheaper than new ones. Don’t go this route unless you have a trusted expert, however, as there is probably no industry except modeling that is more lie-filled than jewelry.

Ignore the above if you’re short of cash. If you have lots of cash,  consider it.

Vibrators and other sex toys also make good gifts.

Anyway, a guy who delivers a little bit of comfort you will set yourself off from most player assholes. The key phrase is “a little bit.” One of the commenters to my earlier post said,

Shit Test – Too little masculine polarity.

Comfort Test – Too much masculine polarity.

Well-stated. I have been both and while you should err towards too much masculine polarity, you can overdo it. I have, and I made women pointlessly suffer by being too aloof. I’ve also made women drop off far faster than they would have otherwise.

If you are like me, you might get over your initial challenges and then decide that you’re too badass to deal with her feelings or to deign to remember birthdays or holidays.

This will both make her feel bad (as well as used) and reduce your performance. A couple dollars, a box, and an air of mystery will go a long way. A little comfort also goes a long way and you should be 80 – 90% aloof, mysterious asshole, but that tenderness will up your game. There is a good book, Mate: Become the Man Women Want, that uses the term “Tender Defender” for what women want and like. They want a guy who isn’t a p***y but who isn’t mean to them. When I was younger I went through phases where I was like, “I’m so fucking hard, I’m the boss, I don’t do fucking Valentine’s day,” dumb shit like that. That was a slightly better stance than giving girls I hadn’t fucked flowers in public… but it wasn’t ideal either.

If a girl is investing emotionally in a guy, she may start testing him for comfort, as she doesn’t want to invest deeply in a guy who is going to hurt her or who just wants t ouse her for sex. Contrary to what some pickup guys say, girls DO get very emotionally invested in a guy… just a very small subset of guys who she picks to get emotionally invested in. Once she’s become invested in a guy, she wants to protect herself, and she’ll do that by testing to see if the guy is invested in her as well. That’s the comfort test. If you don’t comfort her when she needs comfort, she will disengage and bitterly call you a “player” or “fuck boy” or similar.

(Adapted from a previous version, [Intermediate to advanced game] Valentine’s Day is coming up. That can be a comfort test. Similar ideas apply to Christmas and Valentine’s Day. I was listening to the Torero podcast on contrasts and realized I should update.)

Bizarrely, Pamela Anderson is the voice of reason: “You know what you’re getting into if you’re going into a hotel room alone”

I’m as surprised as anyone by “Pamela Anderson Doesn’t Care If You Disagree With Her Hollywood Sexual-Harassment Stance: ‘Backlash Is Good’:”

“You know what you’re getting into if you’re going into a hotel room alone,” Anderson explained on Thursday’s program. “Don’t go into a hotel room alone. If someone answers the door in a bathrobe, leave. This is things that are common sense, but I know Hollywood is very seductive and the people want to be famous. Sometimes you think you are going to be safe with an adult in a room. I don’t know where this security comes from, but somehow I dodged it all.” She also recounted her sole encounter with Weinstein while working on the film Superhero Movie, whom she called “very intimidating.”

I wouldn’t have thought Pamela Anderson would be one of the very few sane voices in the mainstream media, but she is. She also seems to want women to be treated like adults, rather than children (or adults when it’s convenient and children when it’s not).

There is not much to this post apart from surprise and a statement that it’s pleasant to see someone, somewhere, stand up for personal responsibility, rather than calling for witch hunts and infantilization.

Some other women who stand up for personal responsibility include Camille Paglia and Laura Kipnis. Too many so-called “feminists” are just whiners and complainers.

The best books for learning game

On The Red Pill someone asked about the best books for learning game: I still think guys should start with Neil Strauss, The Game and Rules of the Game. They are somewhat dated and anything about “negging” should be ignored, at least at first. “Negging” is really push-pull or what Torero and Krauser call “fractionation.” The rest of the book is still more right than not, and Neil Strauss is a very good writer. Both books are also “mainstream” enough to give to your friends, even as a joke. Neil Strauss describes how he read evolutionary biology books that reinforced and supported the game he was learning.

For clueless guys and even some intermediate guys, it’s helpful to understand biological programming. Whether you want it to or not, biology drives us more than culture. Women don’t have that much choice in who they are attracted to, just like guys don’t. Guys can try to force themselves to be attracted to older or fatter women, but it just doesn’t work, right? The number of 45 or 50 year old women a guy will be attracted to is very close to zero, unless the guy himself is aged 60+. A 22-year-old hottie will make any guy look twice, especially over his 45-year-old wife. Maybe he’ll overcome his primal urge through conscious effort but it will remain. Girls are the same way but their criteria is not exactly the same for reasons that make sense from an evolutionary biology perspective.

I actually don’t think it matters very much where you start with game books, as long as you read a lot and more importantly immediately try to apply what you read. Too much reading in the absence of practice is masturbatory.

What else a guy should read depends on where he starts and what sticking points he has. Guys in high school and college will have different needs and ecosystems than guys who are 30 or 40 or 40+. If guys in high school and college try London daygame cold approach or Strauss-Mystery Method they are going to become weird outcasts quickly. They need more friendship, social circle, and connection techniques. Some techniques and mindsets described by London daygame and Strauss-Mystery are still applicable, but “cold approach” is for big, anonymous cities.

“Sticking points” will occur at different levels. For example the Reddit user MattyAnon suggests The Sex God Method, and that is a good book but will be of less use to very inexperienced guys. For guys who are getting laid but are not skilled or confident enough in bed it will be extremely useful, maybe even essential. The book She Comes First is also useful and extremely recommended. Teenage guys should all be gifted a copy of this book, and even sexual veterans can probably learn a thing or two.

One of the best game posts I’ve read is by Krauser, “Reveal vs Restructure,”

I think it comes down to which side of this divide you fall on. Is your Journey a process of:

* Uncovering a pre-existing SMV and personality that is attractive to women, or;

* Ridding yourself of a Pussy Repellent virus and then building an attractive man from scratch.

A guy who is uncovering preexisting value will be different from a guy who has to build a lot of value. The latter guy may be a fat, psychologically messed up guy who needs to learn how to cook, how to quit eating sugar, how to use the gym, how to move his body, how to dress himself properly and get his clothes tailored, and why he needs to physically move to a city and get out of suburbs or rural areas. And he must start now and results may not come for a very long time. But he has no choice. He must struggle, or pay for it, or be alone.

Although this isn’t a book, I like the website Good Looking Loser because it’s about an attractive guy overcoming his own psychological barriers. There are a lot of attractive guys who need help with that. Some attractive guys have limiting beliefs and other issues that prevent them from achieving up to their level.

For books, I just wrote about the Torero book Daygame, and that is a good read. Krauser has good books too. There is a purple pill book, Mate, by evolutionary biologist Geoffrey Miller and writer Tucker Max, and I think it’s worth reading as well.

For guys who need help with fitness, Starting Strength is good and so is the 5×5 method or any number of others. The important thing is to start and make some progress.

Many people like the Mark Manson book Models. It isn’t my favorite but so many guys like it that I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention it.

Over time it is very important to understand how women think and how women evaluate men. There isn’t a single book that is best for this subject but all of the books recommended will help build this mental map.

My Secret Garden is all about women’s depraved sex fantasies, so if you have trouble realizing that chicks want to be totally dominated and used hard by the right guy, read it. Women prefer written porn and guys prefer visual porn, so to understand what gets women off you need to read, while also realizing that erotic material has its place but also often differs from real life.

Personally, I used to read a lot more novels than I do now. Great fiction is still wonderful but so much fiction is about people who are psychologically damaged or who are just dumb. For game-aware guys, watching fictional guys step on their dicks is painful. Usually the answer to their dilemmas is “escalate,” “lift,” or “find a new girl.” In most novels the answer is to keep pouring attention into a single hot girl, who by the end of the story comes around, exactly like most girls don’t in real life.

There is still great fiction but it is usually not about relationships. Right now I am halfway through a novel called Kingdom of the Wicked that is fun but not mainly about sexual strategy. Vary what you read or you will get bored.

If you haven’t already, on your journey you will also learn that there is life beyond game and that without personality and outside interests, you will never break into the highest girl tier for longer-term relationships, whether open or closed. Sex is like oxygen or water, because when you’re getting enough it recedes in importance, and when you’re not getting enough it becomes the focal point of your entire life (not my original metaphor but it’s a good one). When you’re confident that you can get acceptable sex in a tolerable timeframe your whole outlook changes and that is what people mean by “abundance mentality.” It’s not just a mentality, it’s a fact of existence. Abundance mentality ensures that no chick can occupy your entire mental space without your consent.

The more you read and learn, the more you will realize how most people, including most girls, are dumb. You also learn that almost no one has a complete and total handle on the game and sex. There is always another nuance.

“More than half of U.S. kids will be obese by the time they’re 35, study predicts”

More than half of U.S. kids will be obese by the time they’re 35, study predicts.” No shit. Just look around. Outside of a handful of elite enclaves (L.A., Denver), the United States is full of fatties stuffing simple sugars into their faces. Anyone who wants supernormal outcomes must put forth supernormal effort.

If you want good results, don’t be like the fatties. Quit sugar.

Tom Torero’s memoir-textbook “Daygame”

I’m smacking my head after reading this:

I asked her to bring me a present costing no more than £1, and I’d do the same. It’s an “investment routine” that I’v used many times since, which gets the girls to commit to the date and not flake – they spend the week thinking of what to get you.

The quote is from Tom Torero’s Daygame and the suggestion is brilliant and easy. I wish I’d thought of this ten years ago. Being good at anything is the accumulation of thousands of small details. This suggestion is one and it must improve pipeline retention. People can also usually only hold a single thing in their mind at a time, so if she’s thinking about the present she’s not thinking about whether she ought to flake.

If you are doing any amount of game and earn more than $5 per hour you need to read this book, as it may save you many many hours through suggestions like the one above. The ones you find most useful will be different from the ones I find most useful. Guys will get more from reading one comprehensive book than 100 random, fragmented blog posts. Daygame puts many seduction pieces together. The simplest parts of game are the very beginning (when there isn’t much to do apart from opener, vibe, and stack) and the very end (the actual sex). It’s the middle where the action happens and for that reason most of Daygame is about the middle, just like most of the Internet posts are about the beginning or end, where guys need the least instruction.

There are too many lessons in Daygame to list them all, but I like: “Either interactions go well, or they’re just funny stories.” Exactly right and you have permission to take the pressure off. Be fizzy and exciting. There are an infinite number of possibilities out there and while I’ve done many things right, I’ve also spent too much of my life taking things with women too seriously. That has almost always been a mistake. Learn to let go and be light, rather than heavy.

Some of the lessons regularly readers of this blog-memoir will recognize: “This whole story, and other ones in the book, show that deleting details is a bad move, as you never know when circumstances change and a number sparks to life again.” Remember “Snapchat in Game?” That’s what I’m saying there. Girls are mercurial and pretty random, and you never know when one is going to turn back around into you. It is unwise to rely exclusively on rebounds but you will get some when you get good.

The psychology behind seduction and seducers is also of interest, at least to me. In the beginning Torero writes that “By the age of 23 I had slept with 2 women.” No wonder he later became a PUA. I had a relatively normal adolescent and college experience, as I started having sex on the early side of normal and never stopped. I waas at or close to what PUA guys call “abundance mentality.”I had crushes and oneitis problems, like most guys, but my past is nothing like Torero’s. Unlike many guys I’ve never had a long drought (except in my 20s when my now-ex had our second daughter, but that’s another story). That may be why I’m tiring of the game and grind while some older guys still love it. I feel like I’ve done it too long.

I don’t want to claim that I was a master seducer. I wasn’t. I’m not now. My younger self mostly had what I would now call eco system game: school and sports. Because I was obsessed with my sport I built up a solid body and solid group of people I knew. That continued into a job involving it, and into college. Also, as players know, the better your body the better your dating life will go (within limits and subject to diminishing returns like every other activity… I have known gym rats who’d be better served cutting their two hours a day in the gym and meeting actual girls) and that is particularly true among younger girls. Of course looks alone are not enough and especially for women a guy’s looks are linked to his status. But I do think I’ve coasted on looks and things like quitting sugar have been to a boon to both my physical self and confidence. Looks are also more important for online dating than off, in my experience, and quitting sugar while lifting assists here too.

At the end of the book Torero is a sage:

It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy that the better your vibe, the better your approaches and dates go, and the better they go, the better your vibe. I felt like I was indestructible.

It’s fun reading these hybrid memoir-textbooks, as they teach me about the writer but also about the reader. My game has never been as tight as many of these guys, and there is a concept or slider in pop psychology that may explain why: some people are “satisficers” and others are “maximizers.” As the terms imply, satisficers keep trying until the satisfaction point for their drive or desire, while maximizers want to reach the highest possible level or state. For someone doing game a maximizer seeks some combination of the absolute hottest, younger, most loyal girls, or maybe the most extreme experiences (like three ways).

Satisficers however seek “good enough” and stop there and that has mostly described me. Which explains why I have never had the energy to really press for achievements like Torero’s. To be sure I’ve had success and some crazy stories, a few of which I’ve shared here, but nothing like the quantity of women described in Daygame. Generally I find one I like and get into a mini relationship that generally lasts three to twenty-four months. Then I begin cranking again.

At first I wasn’t consciously doing this, but over time I realized it. I think I am just too lazy to bother getting really good, but this doesn’t bother me much and I’m glad there are guys who go all the way. Reading about the Elon Musks of seduction is fascinating. I’ve had some high eights and nines and while they were wonderful, the truth is that when I’m in a woman I don’t care that much about whether she’s a decent seven or a high eight. The latter is better but in my life, especially now, there aren’t a lot of high eights out there. A while ago I dated a girl who was 19 and IMO a solid 8, with things only breaking down about 20 months in when she demanded to move in and I said no. But even with a solid 8, by the 50th or 100th sex session a guy acclimates to her body. She normalizes.

Back to Torero. Interspersed among the stories are big-picture ideas, like this:

When it comes to seduction, girls don’t want logic, they want emotions. The problem is that guys approach dating and daygame from a logical perspective, when really what they should be getting better at is seeing it from the female perspective.

Absolutely. Definitely an error I made when I was younger. The book is filled with mentions of mistakes I have made. If the next generation of guys internalize these ideas maybe they will avoid the mistakes. Most guys of course are too lazy to read books, so they will make the same errors, but the knowledge is there.

If I have a criticism of the book it is that it doesn’t look enough at the dark side. Intense gaming can be isolating and very few guys share the need to do intense game. In addition I read one of Krauser’s books in which he describes Torero going deep into the void in the 2012 – 13 period. That has been excised from this book, so one would never know it. Almost all positive things also have their shadow, and the lack of shadow here makes me doubt it more than I otherwise would.

Torero also mentions going to Oxford and studying with Richard Dawkins, but he eventually becomes a primary school teacher. Perhaps the UK is different from the U.S., but in the U.S. it’s very rare for graduates of elite universities to go into low status, low pay professions like primary school teaching. So why’d he do it? What led him there? We don’t know. Maybe it isn’t important. But it seems strange from an American reader’s eyes.