Text & Illustrations by Jake Young
Most dating advice is well-intentioned. Every guy wants to help his buddy get lucky (unless he's a selfish prick). However, even the best advice can go wrong. Read these cautionary tales and learn to take all relationship suggestions with a grain of salt moving forward.
Just Be Yourself
Don't be ashamed of who you are, and own your weaknesses as well as your strengths. It's a perennial favorite among young-adult fiction authors and well-meaning moms. However, this doesn't give you carte blanche to disregard all the rules of society and shun all judgment. The Just-Being-Myself Guy may lack the necessary self-awareness that makes parties, bars and conversations with strangers acceptable. You can be yourself without being too much to handle. We're social creatures; we have customs and manners that you shouldn't cast aside in the name of "selfness."
Get Some Liquid Courage
A shot or two is just what you need to talk to that pretty dame. Still edgy? Just grab two more shots, bourbon, bottom shelf. Whoa, whoa. whoa! Slow down there -- you should buy her a drink! Something stiff, a little social lubricant, if you know what I mean. Don't forget one for yourself! You still seem scared -- make it a double. Did you eat yet? Nah, forget it. You'll be fine. Now go get out there and...you just puked directly down her shirt. PACE YOURSELF!
Spend Big to Impress
This is oddly primitive. Shower her in fancy gifts, expensive dinners and unforgettable nights out, and she'll be wrapped around your finger. Whether you can actually afford to do all this is a different story. If you follow this advice but don't have the career/401K to back it up, she'll start getting suspicious when your first date was a night out at the opera and the follow-up was dollar pizza and sneaking through the fire exit at the movie theater.
Honesty Is The Best Policy
This is another one where confidence and self-awareness get thrown out of whack. Be upfront about your intentions and don't lie. This is all good advice until you walk up to a friend of a friend and say, "Hey there, I've been having trouble paying the bills lately. It's been really stressful, but your soft, womanly body is making me feel safe and calm. Wanna come back to my place?" That is too much honesty. Don't be that honest. Never be that honest.
Everything From The Seduction Community
At the height of its popularity, every guy at least flipped through "The Game." There is no secret, though. A lot of it is basic psychological tricks, the same kind of things that have been used by salesmen, street performers and con men for centuries. This is what they don't talk about in the books or TV shows. If you manage to impress people with outlandish outfits, snappy conversation games and some close-up magic, you're usually just fooling some rubes -- and not finding a real girlfriend.