Thursday, July 19, 2012

A Find! (And a book review)

I was out with my wife a couple of weeks ago and we stopped in a little consignment shop. While she was trying on clothes, I was browsing through the selection of used books on the back wall.That's where I made this remarkable find: The Game, by Neil Strauss. I'd have bought it if it was a ratty paperback, but was especially delighted to find it bound in leatherette, and decorated with gold leaf. The silk ribbon bookmark is an especially nice touch.

In spite of the binding, this is not a pickup-artist Bible. It's actually the story of how author Neil Strauss transformed himself into a pickup artist called Style, and moved into a Los Angeles mansion with Mystery. It's a memoir rather than a method, but reading it will give you some insight into the methods of the pickup artists. 

The book reads like a novel, and it's a real page-turner. After Style develops the skills to pick up any woman he wants, he begins to question what it is he really wants. He notices that the group of PUAs living in Mystery's house are more concerned with impressing each other than actually meeting women. He discovers that pickup skills are great for one-night stands, but struggles with forming lasting relationships -- too bad he didn't have the benefit of Athol Kay's writings, or The Red Pill Room, to help him with that.

Eventually the infighting and rivalries cause the residents of the house to go their separate ways. Strauss' big insight comes at the end of the book, when his girlfriend Lisa tells him she wants him to be Neil, "balding, nerdy, glasses, and all." 

He realizes that while Lisa liked "the real me," she would never have had the chance to meet him without the Game. 
I needed Mystery, Ross Jeffries, David DeAngelo, David X, Juggler, Steve P., Rasputin, and all those other pseudonyms. I needed them to discover what was me to begin with. And now that I had found that person, brought him out of his shell, and learned to accept him, perhaps I had outgrown them.
Perhaps he had. And all of us in long-term relationships can learn from his experience. The PUAs have some information we can use, but we don't want to be them. 

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