He quickly realized that at point-blank range, "you throw like a girl" might not be the best opening line. (Photo by istolethetv)

As a student of “the game” in years past I met a lot of fellow seekers who went on to become teachers. In fact, I’d say that a good percentage of the guys who learned well and actually succeeded with women have themselves turned around and become teachers, coaches or gurus. (It still happens much that way, which can be a problem, but that’s for another time.)

One of these former students now writing books and teaching seminars is Jeff Allen. His stories back in the day were wild and crazy, often involving karaoke, scatological humor and extreme drunkenness. But this week he reached the mainstream in an article for Time Out New York, wherein he coached journalist Connell Barrett on simple—and classic—tactics for getting the number.

Then Barrett takes the pickup “tricks” into “the field” (i.e., bars) and tries them out on unsuspecting ladies. After each attempt he reveals himself and debriefs the woman, giving insight into her perspective.

Energizer Bunny

It made me laugh when the first “opener” he tried was called the “karaoke opener” (see above). But instead of actual karaoke, it sounded instead like a variation on a Robin Williams monologue. And the only guy who does that well is named…you know. His “target” agreed, telling him to “let a girl breathe.” In reality this might have been a test to see how “out there” the journalist was willing to go, because it’s not something that will usually work.


Barrett’s most successful approach occurred after being coached on touching: done right, it can speed intimacy; done wrong, it can have her reaching for the pepper spray. Friendly, benign touches (like even the dreaded high-five) first can set the stage for hand-holding later. He had a head start on doing it right when he approached a woman on one of the sofas at a dimly lit bar: the stage was set for intimacy before he even showed up. He also had assistance from Allen, who accompanied him as a wingman to occupy the woman’s friend.

The downside to this kind of approach is that sped-up intimacy can lead to expectations. After he revealed he was simply following a coach’s orders, his “target” felt “duped.” A girl who lets you put your arm around her will believe you like-like her, so proceed accordingly.

The “Two-Set”

The next step for Barrett was to approach a pair of girls all on his own. This is actually fairly easy to do at first, as long as you make sure not to alienate the friend: pay as much attention to her as you do “your” girl, or soon she’ll be dragged away to the bathroom, and the pair will either strangely disappear or be seen across the room, obviously talking about you but not in a good way.

The tough part about approaching a duo or group is the moment you want to start really bonding with one. You’ll have to find a way to have her leave her friend(s) with you, with her friend’s blessing. Barrett did amazingly well in that respect, as the friend was willing to be the one to leave—a rarity. Usually you’ll have to use something like, “can I borrow your friend, we’ll be right back.”

You Are So Beautiful…to Me

Finally Allen had Barrett simply walk up to a woman and tell her she’s gorgeous. As I’ve mentioned before, if you can approach confidently and follow the compliment with conversation, this may be the best way to meet women just walking down the street. In a club it can depend on the girl’s ego, but again Barrett got lucky: he happened to approach a French girl. Based on personal experience, I can tell you no one in the world appreciates a direct, blunt approach more than a French girl. They want you to cut to the chase.

“If I didn’t have a boyfriend…,” she told him after (and only after) he revealed himself. And she probably wasn’t just being kind.

The Best “Pickup Trick” of all

That’s me, because I’m going to tell you the greatest “trick” to any of the approaches in the article: lucky or unlucky, Barrett was willing to get in there and make them. Maybe he did only because he knew he could reveal the “act” if he was rejected. You know what? If pretending you’re a journalist when an approach goes haywire helps you cope, do it.

Allen finishes up by reiterating a point I’ve made before: “A guy who’s good with women gets rejected a lot.” It’s your self-confidence that pulls you through when you don’t get the girl, whether you’re a full-time pickup coach or a busboy. And in the end it’s your self-confidence that gets the girl. No tricks required.

Tricks from a pickup artist [Time Out New York]

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(Photo by Tanki)

The third edition of the Tao of Bachelorhood podcast is up now! This week’s ‘cast is about picking up* women, with a couple of slight detours:

  • The single biggest hurdle most men have to get over before they can open the floodgates and meet women by the dozen.
  • Why a man had to travel the world to truly what he had right here at home, and how his lesson can make you not only a happier person, but help you with women.
  • A mildly amusing tale of drunkenness.

(*Disclaimer: I often use “pick up” interchangeably with “meet,” because no matter whether you want to take her home right now or marry her, you begin the same way.)

Thanks once again for listening.

As usual, don’t be shy about letting me have your suggestions and questions at bachelorhood@gmail.com.

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