Two More Selections from the World’s Most Abominable Romance Novels

(About a two minute read)

Here are two more excruciating passages from the world’s most abominable (unpublished) romance novels:

From Kitchen of Lusts:

Robert could not sleep. Outside, the violent thunderstorm broke the hour into moments, and the moments into seconds. Each second held an eternity in itself. And each eternity seemed to chide him with his own ultimate meaninglessness. Robert stirred once again in his sheets.

“I am nothing to Vanessa. Beautiful, kind Vanessa”, he thought despairingly for perhaps the hundredth time that night, for perhaps the thousandth time that entire day. “And there seems not a thing I can do about it.”

But he knew, or he sensed, that down that lane lay only the emotional oblivion of hopelessness. “I must not allow myself to feel hopeless. There must be something to give me hope. If only I could discover it!”

Yet, all that came to mind was the careless joy he’d felt earlier that sunlit afternoon when seeing Vanessa’s breasts bouncing in her white, lightly woven, cotton blouse as she ran across the flower strewn meadow to be first to ravage and engorge the delicious foods spread out on the park table at the church picnic they’d attended.

Suddenly, an idea came to him, an idea perhaps midwifed by the violence of the thunder outside, “She loves food! Adores food! Why have I not seen it before! She’s a pig for food,and will do anything to have her way with it. It’s her religion! So I shall…I shall resolve to become a master chef. She must notice me then!”

“And to seal matters”, he further reflected, “I shall appeal to her religious nature, and become a Minister of the Deity, too.” With that, Robert resolutely set his feet upon the awful path that would eventually bring the future lovers to their terrifying fates. And yet, not before the two had learned to hump like rabbits…

From Ravaged is the Night:

Zounds!”, Danielle said. She liked very much to say, “zounds”. She felt using an archaic word now and then might signal to men that she had a few functional brain cells, for men tended strongly to merely focus on her breasts.

“Zounds!”, she repeated, just to make sure Clemence had noticed the word. But poor Clemence’s face and ears were deeply buried in her cleavage, and Danielle wasn’t sure he could hear much of anything.

She herself could certainly hear something! She could hear his sobs; sobs that had started just moments after he had suddenly, and without any warning at all, plunged his head into her cleavage. That was about a quarter hour ago, Danielle figured, and it might be getting time for her to ask him what was the matter.

Still, she hesitated. The two had been seeing each other for a few weeks now, and Danielle had come to recognize Clemence’s gentle, but troubled soul.  In fact, it was his tender, sensitive nature that had first attracted her to him.  “Maybe he just needs a bit more time alone in my cleavage”, she thought compassionately, “We all need to retreat from the world, now and then.”

It disturbed her, though, that he had plunged in without any explanation at all. She wished she could do more to help him, but she had no idea what the problem might be.

To make matters more difficult, both she and Clemence were only sixteen and both of them frequently struggled when trying to express their newly discovered, but extremely powerful — and almost entirely unchecked — feelings. “He might not be able to tell me, even if he wanted to.”, she thought.

She bit her lower lip. She felt like crying herself now. Crying simply because Clemence was crying. “He suffers! My love, he suffers!” Tears began to well in her tender eyes.

But at that moment Clemence raised his head. At last! She felt relief wash over her. “What’s wrong, my love?”

“Nothing. Nothing’s wrong.”, Clemence said in a voice that was still strung out by powerful emotions. “It was your socks. Your socks. I just then noticed them, and I’ve never been so happy in my life! Dearest, you must love me! You’ve chosen to wear my favorite color!”

See also Selected Passages from the World’s Worst Romance Novels.

Selected Passages from the World’s Worst Romance Novels

(About a 3 minute read)

Three selections from the world’s worst (unpublished) romance novels:

From Quiet is the Yearning:

That evening, and following their supper of cold lamb, the two of them sat by their fireplace for an hour, each in his or her own chair, each with his or her own book, as was their custom most evenings. And there should be nothing out of the ordinary to mention about them, except that Henry, at some point that evening, looked up from his tome to say to Ann (with a measure of feeling in his voice that was unusual to Henry), “You are by no means wretched, Ann.”

“Don’t be a fool, Henry”, Ann replied after the moment it took for her to regain her composure, for the remark had greatly moved her, “You presume to much!”

The couple now — for the warmth of Henry’s remark had made them both realize they were indeed a couple now — the couple quietly returned to their books, deeply satisfied.

From The Accountant of Lust:

At some point during the meeting, her mind had crossed the line from her customary sharp focus on the business at hand to idle thoughts of Jeff. “Why am I always thinking of him”, she wondered, “He’s just a man, and his only distinction is he’s more impossible than most men.”

But she knew it wasn’t true. Not entirely. Jeff was…was.. something more to her than merely the accounting department’s single most despised jerk. Certainly, he was that. No one, not even she, could deny that Jeff was a jerk. At least not after he’d been caught drawing a crude penis on the final page of Louise Franson’s dog-eared copy of her favorite novel, Savage Love.

“I know Jeff can draw so much better than that”, she mused, deeply puzzled, “what motivated him to make the penis so crude? I guess it really must be true he’s a jerk. A more refined man would draw a more refined penis. I’m sure of it.”

“Well”, she thought again, “I don’t care! NO ONE, NOT EVEN JEFF HIMSELF, CAN STOP ME FROM LOVING HIM!”

Abruptly, she realized the whole boardroom was smiling knowingly at her. “Oh god”, she realized, “I’ve been talking out loud!”

Thinking quickly, she decided to poof. Poofing was the only truly reasonable thing she could do to distract her board members from the awful, frightening, but strangely intoxicating, truth that she, the president and CEO of Snuckson’s Motor Parts, had fallen deeply, profoundly, and foolishly in love with a jerk.

From Dark Longings:

Tobias felt his impatience turning into despair. An hour had passed. Then another. And still, no midget.

“What’s keeping him?”, Clarissa asked, moodily.

“How in hell do I know? The talent agency closed at five. There’s no way I can call to find out.”

“Don’t get angry with me! It’s not my fault”, Clarissa protested. But she was too depressed to be feisty, really.

Tobias looked over to the motel room bed where Clarissa sat waiting, dressed in her school-girl outfit. Her hands were toying with the model train transformer, clicking the voltage switch back and forth. Click! Click! Click!

Their usual assortment of goodies lay all around her. A standard can of whipped cream, a fresh, thorny rose bush, the couple’s family Bible, two or three impressively sized dildos, and Clarissa’s favorite teddy bear.

“Maybe we could start without him”, Tobias suggested, suddenly hopeful.

“On our wedding night? No midget on our wedding night?”, Clarissa was incredulous, “But I want this night to be special!


See also Two More Selections from the World’s Most Abominable Romance Novels.

Late Night Thoughts: Socialism, Theresa and Carlos, Kindness and Tragedy, Poems, and More

(About a 9 minute read)

Thunder has been rolling off the mountains since the afternoon.  The breeze has carried the scent of rain for hours, but there’s been no rain.  It’s once again warm enough to leave the doors and windows open to the night air.


Someone was telling me that judgmental people are always jealous people.  If that’s so, I haven’t noticed it.  But it sounds like something that could be true.  And if it is true, I wonder if the converse is also true: Are jealous people always judgmental people?


Waking Up in a Coffee Shop

The sun slants geometric on the floor,
Van Morrison drags the air,
Serbian troops surge forward,
And two old women sit and tell
The lives of relatives —
Their jobs, their marriages,
Births and deaths
Recounted at a trot
With shoes kicked off —
Statistics on estrogen.

The cup of Kenyan is just enough
To provoke the thought Don and Becky
Like the smell of leather better than most religions
And a good walk better than the rest:

Then it’s time to do the laundry.


I might have been 14 or 15 the first time I heard that socialism fails because people are not equal in their abilities.  Of course, the truth of the statement, “people are not equal in their abilities”, is indisputable.  But does any prominent socialist assert that people are equal?  Not that I know of.  The argument seems to be a straw man.

So far as I know, socialists only assert that people should have equal economic, social, and political rights and liberties — not merely in theory (as under capitalism), but in practice.

Nor do socialists typically hold that everyone should receive the same compensation for their work as everyone else.  Rather, compensation typically varies according to the principle, “To each according to their contribution”:

The term means simply that each worker in a socialist society receives compensation and benefits according to the quantity and value of the labor that he or she contributed. This translates into workers of high productivity receiving more wages and benefits than workers of average productivity, and substantially more than workers of low productivity. An extension of this principle could also be made so that the more difficult one’s job is—whether this difficulty is derived from greater training requirements, job intensity, safety hazards, etc.—the more one is rewarded for the labor contributed. [source]


Surely, a sense of humor has prevented more murders than a sense of morality.


As I understand it, there are four major religions that contain within them some kind of a fundamentalist movement: Hinduism, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.  According to one scholar at least, the four fundamentalisms are united in that each is a reaction against modernity.

That would seem to make sense to me.  But I would go a bit beyond that to speculate that the fundamentalisms are also rooted in the same psychology as political conservatism.  Over the past several years, a growing body of psychological research has demonstrated that liberals and conservatives tend to have differences that run deeper than mere politics.  That is, their differences tend to be rooted in their psychologies.

For instance, studies have shown that conservatives, when compared to liberals, are among other things:

  • More orderly
  • More anxious
  • More attuned to threats
  • More self-disciplined
  • Less open
  • Less novelty seeking

One seems to find the same pattern in the four fundamentalisms.


Some years ago a friend of mine, Theresa, saved enough money while working as a $1000/night erotic dancer in Los Angeles to start her own small import/export business.  For a reason I no longer recall, she specialized in trade between the US and Costa Rico.   It was in Costa Rico that she met her husband.

Theresa is athletic and is in the habit of running every day, regardless of where she is in the world.  Consequently, when she was getting her business up and running in Costa Rico, she would run each day, taking the same route, at about the same time in the morning.  As it happened, her route took her by a bank.

Working at the bank was a young man who I’ll call Carlos here because I’ve forgotten his real name  (Sorry, Carlos! But I’m bad with names — even though I recall how handsome you are!).  One day Carlos noticed a beautiful blond woman running past the bank’s windows.  But it wasn’t just her beauty that stopped him in his tracks.

Carlos, you see, had had a dream in which he’d seen a beautiful blond woman running past the bank’s windows.  In fact, it seemed to him that the woman he was watching run past the windows that day was the very woman of his dreams.

He soon became aware of Theresa’s routine and began watching for her around the same time each day.   A month went by.   Then one day, Theresa was not there!

Carlos looked for her the next day, and the day after, but she no longer passed the bank each morning.  What Carlos didn’t know is that Theresa had found a local partner, and had consequently returned to the US.

Seven very long years went by for Carlos.  His friends and family worried he would never get married.  They — especially his mother — put pressure on him to find a woman.  But Carlos resisted.  It was not that he was waiting for the blond woman, though.  Carlos had given up all hope of seeing her ever again.

Instead, the blond woman had made such an impression on him that he didn’t feel any other woman he met during those seven years quite measured up to her in beauty or physical grace — and for Carlos, those were deal breakers.  He wondered if he would every feel differently, but he was adamant not to marry a woman he didn’t want at least as much as he had wanted the blond woman.  That would not be fair to any woman, he thought.

Meanwhile, back in the US, Theresa had long ago cashed out her share of the import/export business and was now a partner in an L.A. restaurant.  One year, though, she decided to take a vacation, and what better place to take it than the lovely country of Costa Rico?  She arranged a month long lease on a house there.

Carlos looked up from his desk one day to see the blond woman running past his bank’s windows!  He was so sure it was her that he didn’t hesitate even a second. Instead, he dashed out the door after her.

Theresa realized someone was calling after her to wait up, but when she looked, it was a stranger, so she kept running.  He couldn’t possibly have any real business with her.  Nevertheless, the man caught up with her.  As they ran side by side, he begged her to stop.

She didn’t stop.

So he sputtered out his story as he ran beside her.  She was the most beautiful girl in the world!  Theresa rolled her eyes.  He just had to meet her!  Theresa picked up her pace.  She was the girl of his dreams!  Theresa pushed herself even faster.  She must stop for he could not bear to lose her for another seven years! Theresa suddenly thought he must have known her from years ago — and remembered her!  Curiosity brought her to a jogging standstill.  She turned to face him.   “Who are you? Have we met?”

The two were married within a year or so.


Kindness is our most powerful rebellion against tragedy.  – George Wiman


The Hands Remember

The hands remember
More than the mind your skin

They think of their own will,
“This was the shape of her”,

When they find themselves cupped
Or curled in a certain loose way

Around the curves
Of you no longer here:

The left hand
Especially so.

Yes, I know
My left hand
Knew you one way,

While my right hand
Knew you another.

Was either best?


Once upon a time, a god wanted something to laugh at, while a goddess wanted something to weep for.  The two created humans, and both were satisfied.



“Hi Don!  It’s Paul!  I’m calling to see if you want to go to lunch today?”


“Great!  Can I come along?

“Don?  Are you still there, Don?”

“Yes, Paul, but now I wish I wasn’t.”

“The Point of Most Religions is the Betterment of Mankind”

(About a four minute read)

“The point of most religions is the betterment of mankind.”  — Posted on an internet religious forum.

A dear friend of mine is a kind, sweet lady who, with her husband, belongs to a fundamentalist church in the Midwestern county I grew up in. Her church means everything to her.

Besides that she’s retired now and spends most of her time doing one thing or another for her church community, her church community presents to her a sort of oasis of love, charity, kindness, compassion, and all around goodness in an otherwise rather disturbing larger world whose values are often alien to hers.

I suspect she would largely agree with the above quote. From where she’s at, the quote must make a lot of sense. She only needs to look at the way her church community took up a collection for the family whose breadwinners were out of work, or the way her pastor visits and comforts the sick, or how most of her church buddies believe in the ideal of treating each other with loving kindness — she only needs to look at those things to agree the point of her religion is the betterment of mankind.

Of course, her church is officially a busybody that’s intolerant of premarital sex, abortion, homosexuality, and many other private things it has no real business being intolerant of. Its pastor is also a staunch supporter of neocons in general, Bush and Cheney in particular, the War in Iraq, the War on Terror, and his side in the so called “Culture Wars”. And many of the people in her church community are bigoted, narrow-minded folk who would never vote for a Black, a Muslim, or a woman to be president. So, to an outsider, her church might appear anything but an oasis of love, charity, kindness, compassion, and all around goodness — let alone dedicated to the betterment of mankind.

Yet, how is she expected to stand back from her church community — which occupies her days and means nearly everything to her — and clearly see the moral ugliness of people who reserve their best “Christian” behavior for insiders just like themselves, while damning and condemning every outsider from scientists to liberals and beyond?

She would much rather help her elderly neighbor get out and about, or bake something to raise money for a needy family, than to consider her pastor’s outrageous notion that homosexuals undermine and destroy the sanctity of her marriage.

I recall a young fundamentalist here in town a while back who I overheard blithely telling her friend that when Jesus said, “Love your neighbor”, he meant love those who belong to your church.

She was certain she was thereby realizing the highest Christian principle of universal love — because, after all, most of the people who belonged to her church were strangers to her, and hence her love for them was “altruistic”.

Yet, even the Bible says there is nothing remarkable about loving only those who are members of our own group.

Humans evolved as a social animal living in small groups. Most of us need little prompting to treat the members of our group with respect, compassion, kindness — even love. After all, we evolved to do that. It’s to a large extent instinctual. We’re almost always ready to “better mankind” so long as “mankind” is the group of people we hang out with.

On the other hand, there are very few Gandhis, very few Martin Luther Kings, very few people like Jesus — very few people who somehow realize in practice the notion the whole world should be treated with kindness, compassion, respect, and love. To most of us, such a notion is “wild”, suspect, perhaps even immoral.

Today, the world — the entire world — is involved in a grand experiment. An experiment to see whether we can all get along together in dignity, freedom, peace and sustainable prosperity. No one seems to have wanted that extraordinarily daring and risky experiment, but it’s now imposed upon all of us nonetheless.

So, what’s going to be the outcome? Will the world descend into endless wars as some think likely? Will it sink into corporate fascism as some others think likely? Will it be the birth of a new golden age for humanity — as very few seem to think likely? Or will something else happen?

More to the point, just what is going to be the role of the world’s religions in bringing about the “New World Order” — whatever that Order actually turns out to be? Are religions going to finally live up to their own professed ideals of universal compassion, kindness, charity, love, generosity, etc.? Will they ever, really, make “the betterment of mankind” their honest “point”?

Frankly, I strongly suspect that any sustained progress towards a world in which most people live in dignity, freedom, peace and sustainable prosperity will ultimately come — not from religions for the most part — but from Humanism. If such progress comes at all.

Originally published on this blog January 15, 2008.  Lightly edited May 6, 2017 to better reflect my current views.

Seven Key Things You Should Do to Find the Right Lover (For Young Women Especially)

(About a 17 minute read)

It is only natural that, as we get older, our tastes in entertainment change.  Mine sure have.  At sixty, the days when I enjoyed showing up at church socials disguised as a United States Department of Agriculture Dairy Products Inspector in order to plausibly announce that I had discovered salmonella in the ice cream are long gone.  So, too, are the hours I once spent calling random strangers at suppertime pretending to be a telemarketer selling “the most exciting brand of mint flavored dental floss you and your family will ever enjoy in your whole lifetimes! Can I put you down for six cases?”.

Nowadays, I have adopted more dignified entertainments, the chief of which is corrupting the youth.  For I have found — like so many people before me — that corrupting the youth is the natural joy and bliss of old people.

I confess, however, that I’m something of a snob about it.  That is, I’m very picky about the ways in which I endeavor to corrupt the youth.  For instance, I disdain giving the traditional advice:  “Work hard, become a cog in the machine, support the status quo, and you too will become your own man.”  Or, “Dress modestly, keep your eyes downcast, and walk in a way that does not tempt men to look at you with lust in their hearts and you too will be rewarded with a wonderful husband devoted to making you happy and blessed.”

No, while I do find such old fashioned advice an effective way to corrupt the youth, I also find it much too cliché for an advice-snob like me.  Consequently, I have specialized in — to put it indelicately — advising young people on how to get laid by someone they want to get laid by.   Just yesterday, for instance, on this very blog I published, The Most Basic Way to Find a Lover (For Men) — for, as everyone knows, nothing corrupts young men like getting laid.

So today I aim to do the same disservice to young women with this post.  Of course, nothing is more scandalously corrupting for a young woman than for her to empower herself to get laid on her own terms.  So precisely that is the real core of this post.  This is all about how to empower yourself by doing seven key things that will dramatically increase your chances of finding the right lover for you.

Naturally, I am eminently unqualified to be offering this advice.  After all, I am an old man here advising young women!  But an excess of sanity has never been one of my weaknesses.  Hence, I must caution any young women reading this that the advice they are about to receive should be embraced with due caution.  Obviously, my advice is not based on personal experience.  Most of it comes from observation, a little of it comes from science, and some of it comes from women close to my own age who’ve told me things they wish they’d known when they themselves were younger.

The only claim I make about the quality of this advice is that it’s stuff I’ve considered and mulled over for years — decades in some cases.   Life can be very strange at times, and — in a way — one of the strangest things that ever happened to me was to have once served as the confident of dozens of young women (and young men, too).   That was about twenty years ago.  Circumstances put me in a position that I did not intend to find myself in, but which eventually resulted in my thinking long and hard about many of things I’ll be writing about today.  Now, with that said, let’s gallop on to the first golden nugget of wisdom  bit of wise advice   insightful observation  old fart’s opinion about what many young women should and should not be doing.

• We start today with what might possibly be the weirdest, most unconventional, bit of dating advice you’ll ever hear from the mouth of an old man:  Ladies, get a hobby!

It doesn’t matter what your hobby is.   So long as it fits you, it can be anything from mud wrestling to sewing your own clothing.  By “fits you”, I simply mean that it should be something you can become good at.   Becoming good at it is key.  But you should get a hobby even if that means putting a lot of time and effort into it.

One young woman I know — a woman I once nannied for a few years — had few interests outside of babysitting.  But she nearly turned babysitting into an art.  She read up on her subject.  She planned her sessions with extraordinary care and creativity.  She kept a diary of how her sessions went, and of the lessons she learned from them.  You can turn just about anything into a hobby, but you should pick something you can become excellent at.

My advice here isn’t based on any grand theory of human psychology.  It’s based on observation.  I have noticed over the years that women who have some interest, something outside of — or apart from — men, that they are passionate about are much more likely to weather the ups and downs of finding a decent lover than women who don’t.  They are not only more resilient, but so far as I can tell, they are happier.  And — for some reason — this is especially true of fatherless girls.

• A friend of mine — a woman a few years older than me — once told me, “If young women understood their ‘pussy power’, they’d rule the world.  The trouble is, it’s only us older women who understand it, and then not even all of us.”   And she’s not the only older woman who has told me much the same thing.  But even if no one had told me about it, I could still testify to the “power of the pussy” based on my own experience as a young man.   The thing is, most young women strike me as nearly clueless about it.

All else being equal, women usually — not always, but usually — have the upper hand in the early stages of any relationship.  Especially in the very early stages.  That is, if they recognize their power and act on it.  Yet so many young women behave as if the terms of their relationship are up to the man.  All too often, they are reluctant to express their legitimate wants and needs; they “compromise” by caving in, perhaps with the expectation that they’ll work things out more to their favor later on in the relationship; and they do not enforce clear and consistent boundaries, among other things.

There are probably dozens of reasons — both biological and social — that women do not take full advantage of their pussy power.  But rather than get into those here, let’s just say that anytime a man wants a woman, even if it’s only for a one night stand, the woman has at least some significant degree of leverage over him.  There is an excellent little book called, You Can Negotiate Anything.  Buy it, borrow it, steal it — but read it.

To be perfectly clear, pussy power is not about using sex to manipulate a man.  Giving or withholding sex in order to get your way is poison to any healthy relationship.  Both men and women are fools if they do it while still expecting to have a loving relationship.  But that’s not what pussy power is about.  Pussy power is about recognizing that you have the leverage — as a woman, an individual, and a human — to negotiate the terms of your relationship as at least an equal to your partner, and quite possibly a bit more than equal (especially early on in a relationship, when it can count the most).  This is an important thing to realize because so often young women imagine they are either relatively weak or powerless in a relationship.

I know some people will think I’m offering pretty cold advice here, but it only seems that way.  With few exceptions, there is no genuine romance or warmth in a one-sided relationship.  If you think you can get what you need — much less what you want — by leaving everything up to the man, by surrendering all control and initiative in the relationship to him, you should deeply ponder just how likely that is to work out well for you.

Society trains women to defer to men, to put men’s wants and needs above their own.  But that’s not how a true partnership works.  You have every right — and every happy reason — to be the equal of your partner.  Are you worried a man might not like that? Then accept the fact that, regardless of whatever tough-guy front he might put on, he’s basically a weak, insecure man, and either chose a different partner, or at the very least, realize you’re going to have to pay for his insecurities one way or another.

If you want to make things exciting for a man, be a person in her own right. Do him a favor — give him something to cherish and love that’s more than a doormat.  If he’s a genuinely strong man, being a genuinely strong woman isn’t going to dismay him — it’s going to excite him, challenge him to be the best he can be.  As long as you don’t use your pussy power to actually abuse a man, you will do just fine to use it.

• One of the hardest things for anyone — regardless of age or sex — to do is to be true to themselves.  And just about no one is perfect at it.  But failing to be substantially true to yourself when looking for a lover can have catastrophic consequences.

It’s easy to understand why.  If you put on a false front with people you will (1) attract folks who like the false you, but probably not the real you; and (2) you will repel folks who don’t like the false you, but might have liked the real you.   In either case, you are increasing the odds of ending up with a lover who really doesn’t like you.  Not the real you.   And few things are more problematic than that.

Put differently, you should be as  true as possible to yourself in order to give those people who like you a chance to like you, and also in order to get rid of those people who do not like you.  It’s really that simple.  But how important it is to be true to yourself is easily overlooked.  For much more information on being true to yourself, see my post here.

•  There is a sense or way in which a very large number of people put less time and effort into choosing a lover than they do into choosing a laundry detergent.  That is, they might try, compare, and weigh a half dozen laundry detergents before settling on one brand of detergent that meets their needs, but nevertheless rush headlong into a partnership with the first or second person that comes along.

This seems to be especially true when sex is involved.  I’m all for sex.  I think it’s a great thing yada yada yada.  But I’m appalled at how many people stick with someone simply because he (or she) was “the first”.

To be sure, sometimes the first or second person happens to be the best bet.  But the odds of your knowing that without doing some comparative shopping, so to speak, seem to me to be fairly low.  You don’t have to ditch the first or second person who comes along in order to do some shopping.  You just have to refuse to immediately commit to a monogamous relationship with them.  Don’t think you have the leverage to do that?  Remember pussy power.

You should ask yourself whether you want a mediocre love life, or something better, even much better.  If all you’re looking for is “passably good enough”, then by all means, jump on the first boat leaving the dock.  But if you want more than that, prepare yourself for some serious comparative shopping.  After all, there are approximately 3.5 billion men in this world.  What do you think are your chances you can’t find a stellar lover out of that large of a pool of candidates?

•  Every young woman these days knows that Prince Charming is a myth, right?  We’re way past the age in which young women waited patiently for Him to come along, sweep them off their feet, and make them forever and ever happy, right?  But if that’s the case, then how come so many young women are still waiting for their prince?  You don’t need to consciously profess to believe in a Prince Charming to unconsciously be waiting for one.

It seems to me that one of the biggest myths our society teaches us about a woman’s role in finding the right lover for her is that her role is essentially passive.  I think most men believe that myth, and at least all too many young women do as well.  The myth, however, is diddly-do-squat, to use the technical term for it.

About forty years ago, a study — perhaps the first scientific study — was done on courtship behavior in humans.  If I recall, a group of graduate students were sent to the bars to observe what really happens between men and women meeting for the first time.  After hours and hours of observation, the students reported back that their hang overs were killing them it is actually the women who most often initiate the contacts!

What happens is that a woman in effect signals a man to approach her by any of several means, the most common of which is to simply smile at him while making eye contact.  After being signaled, often repeatedly, the man most likely approaches the woman, introduces himself, and the two of them then sort out their chemistry or lack thereof.  In other words, courtship behavior in humans is typically initiated by the woman.

Every single relevant study of human courtship behavior (that I’m aware of) since that first one has found pretty much the same thing.  Up to 90% of the time, the woman initiates contact.

Yes, it sometimes does happen that a really good lover comes along to a woman who has taken no more initiative to find him than to wait patiently for his arrival.  But just about anything “sometimes happens”.  What I’ve seen much more often is that a poor fit comes along and that poor fit is then blown up way out of proportion by the woman’s hopes and dreams that he’s a prince.

Your odds of finding a great lover dramatically improve if you put yourself out there and make things happen.  Yes it requires time and effort to meet people, but look at the potential pay off!  People complain over and over about how frustrating and grueling the “dating scene” is.  But that’s life.  Most things don’t fall in your lap: You have to work for them.

•  This might be the single most important bit of advice I can give you.   It’s simple in theory, but often hard to do in practice.  Yet do it you must if you are going to be happy.

When you meet an abuser, move on.  Don’t try to reform him.  Don’t try to save him.  Don’t try to change him.  You aren’t going to win that one.   Move on just as soon as you safely can after identifying him as an abuser, and regardless of any excuses you or he can think of for you to stay.

How do you know he’s an abuser?  Early on, it can be hard to tell in many cases because abusers tend to be quite charming up until they sense you have become committed to them.  Then they unleash hell on you.  But if you find someone who:

  • Fails to keep in check any possessiveness or jealousy they feel
  • Believes that you — and not they — are responsible for their feelings, especially any feelings they have of possessiveness, jealousy, and lust.
  • Bad-mouths their ex’s (especially in a one-sided manner, as if there was never anything good about the people they’ve been with in the past)
  • Tells you you’re not like all the rest, meaning you’re not as bad as the rest
  • Has a low opinion of women in general, and plenty of “reasons” to excuse his low opinion
  • Makes you feel uncomfortable to be yourself
  • Freely and sincerely criticizes you in front of others
  • Tries to isolate you from your friends and family
  • Wants to control you, especially your sexuality, but also in any other way tries to control you (influence you, yes; control you, no)
  • Attempts to change you into a person you are not.  That is, change you against your nature, against who you are as a person

If any of the above are true of someone, then the chances are good you’ve got hold of an abuser.  However, the surest sign is the last: They want to change you in ways that go against your nature, against who you are as a person.  That is, they want you to not be true to yourself.  And the only exceptions to that rule are if and when they try to change you because being true to yourself would genuinely harm you or harm others.

If you had a poor relationship with your primary care giver (mother, father, grandparent, etc), or you are a fatherless girl, then please be especially cautious about the potential of getting into an abusive relationship.

It can be difficult to leave an abuser, but the longer you stay with him, the harder it will get.  Seek professional help if you are having difficulty leaving him — your situation is that serious, whether you fully realize it or not.

• Keep up your relationships with your friends and family.  It always surprises me how many woman, once they find a lover, suddenly disappear — or all but disappear — from the lives of their friends and family.  That’s a mistake.

Early on in a relationship, your lover might seem like someone who can be everything to you — friend, confident, companion, partner, etc — but as time goes on, you’ll almost certainly find that he simply cannot be excellent at all those things.

Moreover, it’s not fair to expect him to be everything to you.  That sort of expectation belongs to fairy tales, and imposes on him a huge burden that, if he takes it seriously, will probably drive him to alcohol, drugs, or even blogging.  Do both him and you a huge favor by keeping up with your family and friends.

Besides, if worse comes to worse, they are your lifelines.  They are the people who — if the relationship doesn’t work out — you will need to help you pick yourself up and bounce back from the thing.

That pretty much wraps up all the advice I’ve got for you today.  To recap, here are the seven points in bullet form:

  • Get a hobby (Cultivate a passion in life apart from men)
  • Understand and use your pussy power
  • Be true to yourself
  • Shop around a bit
  • Seize the initiative by putting yourself out there
  • Move on from abusers ASAP
  • Keep in touch with your friends and family

I’m acutely aware of the fact that my advice is not comprehensive — that’s there plenty of good advice for young women I haven’t covered here.  I am hoping that my readers will chip in and offer their own sage advice.  Please feel free to do so!

If you feel grateful to me for this post (unlikely) or feel grateful to me for finally ending it (very likely), then you should consider buying from me a case or two of the gosh darn best, most exciting mint flavored dental floss you’re apt to ever enjoy during your whole lifetime!  Why go yet another dreary day without the tingling, fresh gums you know you deserve as a human?  Simply call me, your Uncle Sunstone, at 1-888-SCAM.  Please have your credit card handy!

EDIT: Sheri Kennedy has offered some excellent advice in the comments to this post.  See her advice here.

The Most Basic Way to Find a Lover (For Men)

(About a 7 minute read)

A few weeks ago, a 17 year old friend who I know from an internet forum that we both hang out on at times asked me about picking up girls.  “What are the basics?  Give me a ‘Picking up Girls for Dummies’.  Are there any really basic rules I need to know?”

Several years ago, when I knew dozens of young people offline,  I would get that question from both young men and young women, albeit usually phrased differently.  “What do boys want?”  “Can I do something to make myself more attractive?”  “How can I get a girlfriend?”

When you first hear questions like that you wonder why anyone is asking you for advice.  Then at some point you realize it’s because you’re old, and young people — for all their occasional cynicism about it — do have a tendency to think their elders know things.

In a way, they’re right.  By the time you get, say, to my age, you either really do know something — or you’re a fool.  Certainly, you don’t know everything.  No one does.  And those who think they know everything are almost always the ones who know the least, for the Dunning Kruger Effect applies as much to picking up people as it does to everything else.  But to say a normal person can reach an advanced age without knowing a thing worth someone’s learning would be implausible.

I asked my young friend to give me a day to think it over before responding to him because I wanted to be sure I zeroed in on the most important things to know, and didn’t lay on him a lot of less essential advice.  Here’s what I emailed to him a day later:

There are so many fine points to picking up people that you can write books about it, but you asked for the basics, and the basics are pretty simple — at least for a man picking up women (they are a bit more complicated for a woman picking up a man, in my opinion).  So what I’ve decided to do here is to distill the single most important thing you should know down to one point, one sentence, and then explain that sentence.  Fair enough?  Here goes:

Generally speaking, a two dollar tip is standard practice: Simply insert the money into her G-String on either the left or right side of her body so tha

Oh sorry.  That was advice from a future email to you, “How to Tip a Stripper”.  I take your education seriously, you know, and have been preparing a whole series of helpful “life hints” for you.  Hey!  No need to look alarmed!

Here’s the real sentence:  The single most important thing you should do to pick up people is learn to play the odds.

That’s it in a nutshell.  Now, first, I’m going to tell you what that means, then I’m going to tell you how and why it works, and last, I’m going to tell you what you need to do to implement it.

The principle is quite simple.  No matter what else you do right or wrong, you all but cannot possibly fail to pick up someone you want to pick up if you are willing and able to meet enough people.  Nothing else matters more than meeting enough people.  Nothing.  Everything else beyond that is finesse.

I know “playing the odds” might sound too simple, but you will be surprised at how merely meeting enough people virtually guarantees success.

Why does it work?  Try thinking of it this way:  There’s always someone out there who wants to be picked up.  All you have to do is find her.  She might be at the same party you’re at, or she might be at the party you’re going to after this one.   She might be in the chat room today, or she might be in it tomorrow.   She might be in the bar or coffee shop tonight, or she might be in it next week.  But there is always someone out there who wants to be picked up.   All you have to do is meet enough people to find her.

In the noble art of selling, this approach is called “order taking”.   No salesmanship required.  Just get out there, meet people, and — regardless of what you’re selling — you will sooner or later stumble across someone who woke up that very morning thirsting to buy your product or service.  You don’t even need to know how to persuade them to buy.  They’re already sold on buying it.  All you need to do is take their order.  And the same thing goes for picking up women.  All you need to do is find one — just one — of the women who that day has already decided she wants to get picked up.

Now, this is a true story, but it’s a bit vulgar, so brace yourself.  My younger brother when he was at university knew of a man named Karl, who lived on his dorm floor.  Karl was a hygienic wasteland.  No one wanted to be in the same elevator with Karl because he took so few showers that he actually stank.

Karl had another habit that everyone at the time found disgusting.  Whenever there was a floor party, Karl would show up, circle around the room, and ask every woman he could ask if — and I quote here — “Hi, I’m Karl.  I want a buttfuck and a blow job.  In that order.  Interested?”

At the time, almost no one found that amusing.  Anal sex hadn’t become popular, much less blowjobs after anal sex.  What Karl was doing was, by the standards of the day, scandalous.  And Karl got rejected time and time and time again.  But he persisted.  Even when some outraged woman slapped him, Karl would pick himself up, go on to the next woman.

Towards the end of the second semester of the year, Karl found a girlfriend.   A young woman said, “Yes” to Karl’s offer.

In all realism, Karl probably had to ask fewer women than you might imagine before he found one who agreed to give him a buttfuck and a blowjob.  I’d guess fewer than 500, and I think that’s probably very much on the safe side.

Playing the odds works even if you have nothing else in the world going for you.

But how to implement it if you don’t want to be as blunt and obnoxious as Karl?  Or, put differently, how should you go about it so as to maximize your chances of meeting someone you want who wants you?

Now comes the part that volumes can be written about.   But all of that is finesse.  I will only mention one thing here, though.  You can improve your chances dramatically if you simply focus on engaging a woman in a genuine conversation and forget all about picking her up.   That is, don’t make it your goal, “I want to pick up someone.”  Make your goal something like, “I want to have a real conversation with someone that lasts at least 20 minutes.”  That’s the best way to get things going.  And, if you do that, you’re well ahead of most people your age when it comes to picking up people.

One last thing.  Playing the odds is by no means the recommended approach to picking up women under normal circumstances.  In fact, it’s the dumbest damn thing you can do.  But it is also the most basic way for a man to pick up women; it does work almost without fail if you meet enough women; and that’s what you asked for.  However, I would suggest you use it if and only if you’re truly desperate, and have no clue about any other way to pick up women.

Any questions?

My friend responded with several questions which I won’t get into here because the exchange has now gone to more than a dozen long emails. and much beyond the scope of the most basic thing to know about picking up people.

And Though We Love Imperfectly

(About a 3 minute read)

And Though We Love Imperfectly

It was passing strange how we met:
She handed me a cigarette,
Then apologized for her ignorance
Of our ways and manners
Before declaring herself a spy
From a constellation in the sky
And could I spend the time of day
Revealing all to be revealed,
Leaving nothing significant concealed,
Of our species’ secrets:
“What makes us different?”

Well, I thought her quite insane,
But I admired her cheerful countenance.
And her pink hair, brown skirt,
Yellow shirt, and red socks
Made me sense she could not be bought,
So I thought her perhaps true to herself,
And vowed to humor her a bit
While the sun sat down from the sky
And the moon rose to sing to the stars.

Leaning to her ear I said,
“It is our species’ curse
That we often destroy ourselves
For our minds run far before us,
But our wisdom lags far behind,
For our hands fashion weapons
That our commonsense does not confine,
For our hopes create mirages
That our desires believe are real,
For our leaders practice falsehoods
And from the people steal.

After that we sat a while in silence,
Human and alien side by side.
“That my friend”, she said at last,
“Leaves me tasting dust.
I believe you’ve spoken truly
But I wish you hadn’t those facts to state,
For your words reveal so cruelly
The insanity that is your fate.
No other kind among the stars
Shares this burden of yours
Nor carries on its wandering road
So heavy a tragic sadness.
Is there nothing your species claims to possess
That redeems you from your madness?”

“We love”, I said, “bright and brief
As fireflies flickering in the dusk,
Luminous as the moon
Shining on a meadow path,
Passionately as a lightning storm
Crashing on a mountainside,
And sometimes as stubbornly as a weed
Rising amidst concrete,
And though we love imperfectly,
Our love is quite as beautiful
As the sun dancing on bright waters,
For that love has the power to affirm
Even our tragic lives,
And that love has the power to gift
Us with the magic of rebirth.
So don’t think that you must mourn
Our tragic insanity
At least not until you have loved —
Loved as wild and free.”

With that she said, “I thank you friend,
Your species is both cursed and blessed.
If you someday grow to reach the stars,
You’ll find you’re not like all the rest.
For like your rising weed,
Something in you pokes through the cracks
And you, O human, have a greatness
That all the others lack.