Jeremy with the burns

In college I knew a kid, Jeremy, who’d been burned pretty bad in a fire as a child. Part of his torso and upper arm were messed up, as was part of his face. His face wasn’t too f**ked up, but it was misshapen enough to be noticeable. I don’t know if he was naturally on the shorter side or if the fire stunted his growth, but he wasn’t real tall, either. Sounded a little funny, too.

Not a guy you’d expect to do well with the girls, but he made up for his physical problems with personality. He was kind but not a doormat and had an ability to make people feel good about themselves. People, including me, just liked having him around. He’s one of the best listeners I’ve ever met. I’m not sure he consciously thought to himself, “I have this fucked up body, so I have to do well in other respects,” but he might as well have thought about it consciously.

On some level, he realized that his problems with his body meant that he needed to work on his mind and social skills. He must have spent many years doing just that. I doubt he read How To Win Friends and Influence People, but I think he discovered everything in it on his own, like a hedge mathematician who rediscovers already-known theorems.

Today, Jeremy might not be very successful on Tinder, but he knew how to operate in the real world. His natural game was better than mine, even though I had considerable physical advantages over him. Did he care about taking off his shirt? Not a bit. When he’d see people staring at him, he’d call out his own obvious deficiency (“Sick burns, right?”). Instead of trying to hide his deformity, he’d call it out, neutralize it, and then move on. I think people who knew him pretty much stopped seeing the charred skin.

Did he get as many chicks as tall, well-built, gregarious guys? No. No he did not. Did he sometimes get tooled and friend-zoned by hot chicks? Absolutely. But he did pretty damn well by the standards of college and he considerably out-performed what you’d expect. He had a lot of deficiencies and weaknesses, but he worked to turn those weaknesses into strengths. He tried to make up for his physical deficits with his personality… and it worked.

Personality and social skills are probably the hardest things to teach and describe in the game toolkit. That’s probably why newly RP guys are taught to overcome their approach fears, hit the gym, quit sugar, etc. … all activities that are easy to describe and implement. “Learn how to interact with people” “read social cues,” those things are hard.

Jeremy and I lost touch over time, but he did marry a pretty girl (“out of his league” the online punters would say) and had a couple kids. Very normal life trajectory. You could say he overperformed his expectations. I’ve not met anyone quite like Jeremy, but I think of the short guys who become doctors, the guys who realize that if one form of the game doesn’t work, it’s time to play a different game. Every guy who exists today exists because, going back to the beginning of sexual selection, his ancestors made him happen. If his dad and granddad and great-granddad could make him happen, he can make it happen too. He needs to avoid giving into despair. Jeremy could easily have given into despair.

I think about Jeremy sometimes when I read guys’s complaints. Jeremy was a guy with some problems, but he also made it a priority to figure out how to overcome those problems.

I wrote earlier that for the vast majority of guys there is no easy way, there is only the hard way. Every guy is working what he’s got, to get laid. Jeremy had less to work with than many guys, but he got there. Chances are you know a Jeremy in your life, and it’s good to ask yourself what you might be able to learn from him.

Author: The Red Quest

How can we live and be in society?

2 thoughts on “Jeremy with the burns”

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