And now, for all the street hustlers and daygamers out there, I will post a review of a surprisingly interesting and relevant book: How to Pickup Girls, by Eric Weber.
The copy I have of this book was published in 1970… a few years before I was born. I bought it as I thought it would be entertaining (and I’ll take any excuse to go deeper into pickup culture), but I was surprised to learn a few things.
There were more than a few surprises as I turned the pages… including some great notes on female psychology.
It’s not specifically designed as a daygame book… but it might as well be. And there are even a few indications that Daygame.com and the London Daygame Model guys were specifically influenced by this book… more on that below.
Here is an interesting quote to start us off:
“Alix: You should emphasize in your book that men should never be afraid to approach a girl. In my whole life only two men have come up to me. It was great. I wish it would happen more often. It adds a little special spice to life.”
Ahhh, I love that. It’s a quote from a girl named Alix… one of several women Eric Weber interviewed for his book.
While the book has some clear “how to” material, I like it more for the inspiration. Weber’s book is a triumphant celebration of pickup… from both sides of the dance. From him (the author), excited about the hunt. But also… from the girls, enjoying being hunted. That first quote above is a great example.
The premise for the book is this:
“Suddenly I had an inspiration. Why not ask real live girls exactly what it would take to pick them up? Why not get the lowdown straight from the horse’s mouth? And that’s just what I did. I interviewed 25 of the prettiest, hippest girls I knew. And asked them how I could go about meeting them if I never seen them in my life before. In other words how could I pick them up?”
“This book is built around their answers.”
I was turned off by the idea that Weber was going to “ask girls” a bunch of questions and that we, as men, would learn anything from that. In general, we “watch what they do, not what they say” when we want to understand female psychology. But I was pleasantly surprised at how interested I was in the comments from the girls. Those comments… were the juiciest parts.
This is a great read for men that like to talk to girls on the street. And it would be an excellent book for a beginner – not so much for its instruction, as for its general encouragement.
The joy of daygame can be felt in these pages.
And the mutual excitement of the sexual tension between men and women is very apparent. It’s real. And as a guy that has done thousands of approaches… I could tell I was reading a book about me, about my wings, and about the girls we chat up everyday on sidewalks in cities around the world.
Here is some more from the opening pages:
“Has this little tragedy ever happened to you? You’re walking down the street. Minding your own business…. And suddenly you spot a girl. Not just an ordinary girl. Not just a fantastic girl. But the girl – someone so absolutely sexy, so downright delicious-looking, you actually find yourself running to catch up with her.”
Well, Weber… as a matter of fact… that HAS happened to me before. As soon as I read this… I knew this book was perfect for men like me.
This is a book about daygame culture.
“Your mind draws a blank. You don’t know what to do… You’re terrified that if you do get up enough nerve to say something it’ll be silly. She’ll ignore you. Or even worse, she’ll tell you to get lost. Or report you to the nearest cop. Or both!”
Yeah. I know exactly what that feels like. This is honest male sentiment, well expressed.
In the pages that follow… Weber gives us some concepts to work with that might help us find the willpower to actually get in front of the girl and open our mouths. And more so, to see the whole enterprise of pickup from the girls’ point in a real and encouraging way.
“Somehow, in some way, some guy was able to break through everyday convention, flag her attention, and take down her telephone number – and perhaps even her panties. It happens all the time. And it’s a fantastic way to meet women.”
Cold approach IS a great way to meet women (it’s the only way that interests me, personally). And this book is a collection of pickup insight (from the late 1960s/1970s) that does an excellent job of showcasing the culture we are keeping alive today.
“This is reflected in almost everything the fabulous 25 had to say about picking up. To them it’s the hip, modern way to meet men… Purer than a blind date, less artificial that being formally introduced… In short, more in tune with our hip, modern times.”
See guys? We’re so “hip” and modern. Go daygame.
How To Pickup Girls is not a strict collection of interviews. The book is organized as a series of chapters on various topics, and the chapters frequently include quotes like these:
“Linda: I get lonely lots of times. All women do. We get lonely and bored and trapped in insecure relationships. It’s very hard to get a good relationship, one that makes you feel loved and wanted. That’s why so many women are always looking to meet new men.”
“Diane: I’m going to be very frank with you. A few months ago I hadn’t gone out with a man for a long time. I was very horny. If a nice man had approached me I would have gone up to his room and right to bed with him. It’s a shame no one approach me.”
“Gail: If a guy approaches me in a nice way then I’m always willing to hear what he has to say. I have to hear a man open his mouth first before I decide whether I dig his looks or not. As far as I’m concerned, he doesn’t have to be anywhere near an Adonis. If I like the way he talks and what he has to say then I’m intrigued.”
I appreciate all this. Weber’s book is full of good conversation.
Not only have I run into girls like the ones featured above, but I have tried to actively imagine girls that think like this when I needed inspiration on a given day.
It is very true about daygame that as you’re out “flipping over stones,” you DO discover girls that feel like the girls in the quotes above. And they DO want to be picked up. They DO want to be swept off their feet. They DO want to be taken “on an adventure.”
So much of the way a women will respond to a topic depends on how that topic is introduced. Whatever Weber did to set up the exchanges from which these interviews were gathered, he managed to inspire some friendly, honest, interesting comments from these girls.
There is a lot that can be learned about female psychology in stories like those found in Weber’s book. And in how you connect those stories to your own personal reference experiences.
“Bonnie: A lot of girls are hesitant because it doesn’t look good to be picked up on the street. Being cold makes it more acceptable in their own little mixed-up minds.”
I am a proud-proud daygamer, full stop. And I don’t agree with Bonnie’s logic here, but it is interested to hear it. Do some girls feel “dirty” being picked up on the street? Maybe. And would they be cold to help distance themselves from the dirt (even if they like it?) – maybe so.
“Bonnie: I don’t know what turns me on about men, but it has nothing to do with whether they’re bad-looking or good-looking because even ugly guys appeal to me for some reason.”
Is this true? I think it is. Certainly for Bonnie.
And I like it as it teases apart the idea that girls want a certain thing. Or that the concept of “looks matter” is particularly interesting (it is not). Dig into their heads… you’ll find thoughts like this. Bonnie isn’t being polite… she’s telling you that when it comes to attraction, for her, “it depends.”
That’s real. Here is more:
“Monique: I was going cross town on the Ninety-sixth Street bus and he got on the bus the same time I did. He was carrying a camera. When I got off the bus he got off, too. He followed me. We sort of walked abreast for half a block or so till he finally said, “Hey, look, I’d like to get to know you. You look nice.” It took the breath out of me. I mean I expected him to say something. But nothing so direct and complementary. It was thrilling.”
Thrilling. That’s cool. Who doesn’t want to be that guy?
I don’t recommend shadowing her for half a block, but here are more pickup stories and more happy girls – and that is no coincidence. As daygamers, we all have stories just like these.
More from the same girl:
“Monique: Anyway, I finally mumbled something about his camera. And we started talking. I gave him my phone number and he called me later in the week. I invited him over for dinner. We had a very nice evening. Not that it turned into any torrid love affair or anything. In fact, I never heard from him again after that. I was sad.”
And this comment is more heart-felt. That is why I included it.
She was sad she never heard from the guy. And I’m not “Captain Save a Ho,” but I include this example to show some consideration for the impact badass men have on the girls we seduce. She was into it. She was sad it wasn’t more than it was. That is melancholy, but charming all the same.
(Did he fuck her? It’s not the point, but based on her comment… I bet he did.)
We go on and on about “thots” but there is more to girls than that kind of caricature. As the line between MGTOWs and “the Red Pill” is increasingly blurry and retarded… I like sources like this that are closer to the thoughts of women, and keep us centered on seduction and not boner-killing themes of “male activism” and political-sexual bitterness.
“Mary: Most girls I know have one guy to date. Two if they’re lucky. But most guys I know seem to be dating eight and nine girls at a time. It isn’t fair.”
Does it sound strange to hear a girl misinterpret the male experience like this? To hear her wild assumption that “most guys” are “dating eight and nine girls at a time?”
Most guys? Almost no guy has that experience. This is classic a “Apex Theory” miscalculation – where she sees some guy that has a life vaguely like what she is describing here, and assumes “most guys” have that life. As recently as this year I have dated 14 days in a row (with almost that many girls), but mostly… we don’t live like this.
Weber is showing us that some girls think this is what life is like for men. Interesting. We learn a bit about the “heads” of women in the flavor of these comments.
“Most chicks are a little bit ashamed when they’re getting picked up. They’ve been taught ever since they could walk that it was naughty to talk to strange men. So women feel a conflict when a strange man, who they’re dying to get to know, approaches them.”
Hmmmm. That is Weber’s conclusion. Who knows how much of that is actually what girls feel during a pickup, but it is an interesting comment.
I believe the most important quality in a man that is truly good with women is a deep, working knowledge of female psychology. I was surprised and pleased to see Weber’s book help me along in that area.
Here’s more from the book at the level of “go pickup!”
“So next time you’re wondering whether to try to pick up a certain girl, remember: It may be a long time since she’s been to bed with a man. She may be horny. Very horny. Right at that moment. And maybe just by saying hello to her, you’ll be the lucky guy she decides to relieve her frustrations on.”
When I was in Japan this year… I dated multiple girls that claimed they hadn’t kissed a guy in over a year. True. Girls like this are waiting for you.
“Think about that. The very fact that you’re dead serious about wanting to pick up women can be a far more valuable talent than super good looks or great wit and charm.”
More valuable? Well… a plan in action is infinitely more likely to generate results than an even better plan that never gets off the couch.
“Even if you bungle things terribly and make an incredible fool of yourself, 10 minutes later you’ll still be able to sit down and enjoy a big steak dinner. In fact, 10 minutes later you’ll still be able to approach another chick.”
What is the quote about “the street has a 10 second memory?”
“Laura: I realize it takes courage for a man who doesn’t know me to walk up the street and say hello. So I don’t mind if he’s a little awkward. Or even a lot awkward. The important thing is, he did it. Despite the fact it wasn’t easy. That impresses me.”
At the time of this writing, my background pic on Twitter is a quote from a girl I picked up on my daygame trip in Shanghai, China. She said, “I think a boy speaks to a girl in the street is brave.” That was such a rad compliment. I couldn’t get that girl out before I left China, but she was fun pickup… I still remember her.
“What else gives a man lots of sex appeal? Some of the girls said it helps to act aloof and cold. Of course, that’s a little difficult when you’re trying to pick someone up. After all, it’s you who who’s approaching them. That alone says you’re interested.”
This quote gives Weber some solid credibility with me as he shines a line a boring trope in our space: this “act aloof” garbage. There is a type of man for which that is appropriate… but that guy, but definition, is not “picking up” girls. Cold approach guys lead with our interest. The question is only… how to position our value along with the fact that we’re obviously interested. In my experience, it’s not that hard to do. If you sweep “act aloof” aside, you have a lot more choices and control over when and where you can make contact with the feminine.
You show interest. You take action.
Weber continues that thought here:
“Whether you know it or not, you already have one great thing going for you when it comes to picking up chicks. And that is, you’re a man. What’s so special about that? It puts you in the driver’s seat, that’s what. As a man, it’s your right, your privilege to approach a woman anytime you want. But women – they’ve got to sit there and wait.”
That is exactly correct.
The “act aloof” crowd (who are mostly keyboard jockeys – prove me wrong) have to wait for women to show interest. That is a “feminine” strategy for mating/dating – “waiting” to be picked up is what the girls do. As a man, I would much prefer to be “in the driver’s seat.”
So many reasons to love this book.
“Traditionally, a woman without a man is a tragic figure. But a man without a woman – now that’s a different story. There’s something romantic about the devil-may-care bachelor who, instead of making dull constricting dates weeks in advance, prefers to pick up his women work wherever he happens to be at the moment.”
I can’t help but think of Troy Francis in that line. Him, and all the rest of the men (myself included) that enjoy being unattached… purposeful bachelors.
Glorious. I love it.
“Now we’re going to get down to the real nitty-gritty of picking up chicks: The approach. What you actually say and do to pick up girls. The very words to use when you first approach.”
He does delve into technique and theory. Here is a good quote:
“As you can see, not all girls like the same approach. What emerges from their answers is that there are three basic approaches: The compliment; The direct approach; and the approach that begins with a traditional well-known pick-up line.”
It makes me laugh to hear a guy lay this out… but it’s not a bad summary. The compliment is the bread-butter of modern London-inspired daygame. The “direct” approach is all intent (and I like this one too). And the cheesy pickup line approach… I have more to say on that below (and this is one of my big take-aways” from the book).
“More chicks than you’d expect prefer a totally direct, honest approach. No fancy talk. No sweet talk. Just a plain, old ‘Hello, my name is Joe Schmo.’ Or, ‘Excuse me, but you’re terrific looking.'”
There is more practical advice in this book than what I present here… but as this is pickup, as we’re out penetrating these girls’ worlds… the emphasis on being direct is totally appropriate.
WHAT I DON’T LIKE:
I always include some criticism in a review, so here is something:
“The first and most important thing you should know about the different approaches is that none can rival just plain being yourself.”
Blah. That’s shit. We’ve all heard it. It has a bit of truth… but that kind of advice won’t help you grow.
The surprise for me in Weber’s book was not that he had weak lines like this one, but that there were so few of them. Weber seems like he is genuinely from our culture, and you don’t have to wade through much of this kind of mainstream noise at all.
Now… here are a couple of parts of the book that really caught my attention… some of the comments that really burned in my mind as I read them.
First, a simple but interesting point:
“Figure it this way: When you approach a woman on the street corner or a bus, it’s just as tough for her as it is for you. Not only does she have to deal with the usual awkwardness of meeting a stranger, but she’s also got to decide, in a split-second, whether you’re a mad rapist or not.”
Is that completely ground breaking? No. But it was helpful.
Hans Comyn’s says somewhere that “it puts our attention on what could be happening in her world.” The quote from Weber above is concentrating for a moment on what she is experiencing in the pickup. This is not our point of view (of her power in judging us as we approach and try to hook), but that she is “under pressure.” That is helpful for me to see.
As the pursuers, we as men are under a lot of pressure ourselves, and we’re likely to overlook the pressure a pickup puts on her. Even when we are smooth and charming and seductive… she might still feel the weight of the pickup. We initiated it, she… stumbled into our path. This was helpful for me to think on.
And here is maybe my favorite line in the book:
“Marie: ‘Do you have a match?’ ‘Do you have the time?’ ‘Aren’t you Hank Ryan’s cousin?’ They’re all corny, true. But at least they make it easy to answer. If a guy walks up and says, ‘You’re very pretty,’ what the hell do I answer back? It’s almost impossible. You’re left there holding the bag.”
I’m not overtly sexual as I approach, but I DO like to go direct… and I can’t tell you how many times I have thought about that comment since I first read it.
This girl is saying that for super direct pickup and compliments… she just doesn’t know how to respond. It makes perfect sense to me, but I hadn’t taken that point of view before.
I needed to hear this. She would rather you give her some cheesy line to deal with, as it’s less intense, and she kind of knows how to respond. That is good insight.
“The really great thing about old, cornball lines is that they’re easy to handle. No matter what you say, it always gives the girl an opportunity to say something back.”
Since I read this, I’ve thought about (not only) how easy I can make it for the girl there on the street, but also how I can structure my text messages so it’s easy for her to play along.
Does that mean I am going to stop being super direct? No. Not at all. I love going super direct. But I am more aware now that I need to help her to respond. That could be by asking her leading questions (where she can fill in the blank), etc. In a more general way, it helps me see pickup from her standpoint.
This book is excellent like that.
“Susan: I prefer somebody to come on to me with something like, ‘Aren’t you Hank Smith’s sister?’ That kind of approach is easier to handle – even if I know it’s artificial. That way at least I can say, ‘No, I’m not, but, gee, you must have seen me somewhere else. Where did you go to school?'”
This is an old book and it’s not super rare. When I came across the examples below, I couldn’t help but wonder if the Daygame.com guys had specifically read this book, and used some of this as they laid out their structure and the lines that have come to be associated with that particular scene.
Below are a couple of examples from Weber’s chapter on “Fifty Great Opening Lines.”
Check these out:
“You look very nice and I’d like to get to know you.”
“Are you French?”
Those are both “textbook” London Daygame Model examples. Did they get them from Weber specifically?
Ha. “You look nice.” Really?
In my opinion, that is the weirdest line from the LDM guys. “You look nice?” What the fuck does that even mean? Anyway… of course I noticed it as I read it, and I can’t help but wonder if the London guys lifted that phrasing from Weber’s book.
And “French?” To be fair, the London guys turned that into an assumption (“You look French… it’s your clothes, the way you hold your cigarette, and that ‘I love wine’ look in your eyes.”)… one of the biggest clichés in daygame.
Two lines specifically from Weber’s chapter… coincidence? Maybe.
Okay. There you have it.
“Here’s a fantastic piece of information I learned from The Fabulous Twenty Five. No matter what a man looks like, what kind of job he has, or what his personality is like, there’s one simple thing you can do that will increase his stature in a woman’s eyes 100%. And that is he can try to pick her up. That alone say something great about a man… It says he’s courageous, that he’s man enough to go out and try to get what he wants.”
“Janet: If a man gets the urge to pick up a girl, he should just do it. Because if you stop and think about it, naturally all your fears will come to the surface. So just do it! Without thinking.”
See? What are you waiting for? Janet is giving you all the permission you could ever need to run up on the girl to drop a smile and your best “line.”
Weber’s book came out in 1970 and yet so much of it is totally relevant today. It was a fun read. Even talking about it makes me want to talk to girls.
And the fact that it’s relatively old is another reminder that in the realm of seduction, time and place don’t matter much at all. The notes from a man in the late 1960s match up very well to the experiences I have had in the last week as I work to charm girls on the sidewalk on the eve of 2020.
People are the same everywhere. And seduction is a pastime that never runs out of gas.