Thursday, January 12, 2012

Refinement to The Neg

Tucker Max is a populizer of The Neg, a technique whereby men strategically criticize women they're attempting to pickup. The idea is that by doing so you signal deep confidence from your high status, which makes you look more attractive, or at least makes a woman rethink blowing you off. It is intriguing, and I wrote about how Asian guys are picking this up to counteract their more restrained demeanor.

Interestingly, I read an interview with Tucker Max over at Psychology Today, and he specifically mentioned several influences that I also quite like to read: Geoffrey Miller (author of Spent), and Robin Hanson (blogs at Overcoming Bias), and the interviewer mentioned Robert Kurzban (author of Why Everyone Else is a Hypocrite). I guess there's a confluence of ideas here that appeals to those with all sorts of angles.

But as to The Neg itself, it seems there's a potential refinement that may take your game to the next level. It's called, 'the pratfall', and involves making a clumsy blunder after establishing your awesomeness. For example, after slyly dissing your target of affection by noting her lipstick is smeared, you sink the hook by secretly shaking up a can of soda and then have it 'accidentally' blast you in the face in front of her. Oh my! I'm so clumsy!

Here's Yale psychologist Peter Salovey on how it works (info needs only first 5 from where this starts). This is within a Yale Intro Psychology Lecture on Love.


  1. Regarding the "pratfall", that's not a new idea. I read about pretty much the same idea years ago, in a different context. It was in a book titled "Dress for Success" or something like that, and when I first read it in the '80s or '90s, it had probably been gathering dust in my father's office for 10 or 20 years.

    The book talked about different ways of dressing for men of different body types, but it also touched on behavior and psychology to some extent. Something it mentioned was that particularly large men sometimes had trouble selling: their size often intimidated other men, and those men would act defensive and refuse to buy (the book explicitly said this wasn't an issue with large men calling on women). The book quoted a big sales rep who had come up with a solution to this problem: he'd 'accidentally' drop his papers when he went on a sales call, and that got the prospect to drop his guard.

  2. Mercury7:48 AM

    That guy couldn't get laid in a whorehouse with a fistful of hundred dollar bills.

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  4. Tucker "Max" only gets women with low self esteem into bed with his "method", any guy could do that without making an ass of themself. His book was a read in everything that is wrong with this world, it made me ashamed to have the same genitalia as him.

  5. Mercury8:23 AM

    BTW - In this context it's worth checking out 'Why Women Aren't Funny' by Christopher Hitchens. Pretty good as far as sweeping generalizations go (the short answer is: "because they don't need to be").

    I know I'd still be a virgin...

  6. @idiot savat: I won't take exception with your overall point but I will take great exception with your initial premise. Having grown up in Chicago and matriculated along a similar post-grad path as Mr. Max -- I can tell you that many of the women he beds are rather impressive. I count two as very good friends. Both very well educated, rather attractive, and I'd have to say more confident/able than the average twenty-something girl.

  7. Anonymous #512:02 PM

    The secret of "game" is that you can never win unless you play. Beyond that it seems like mostly nerdy contempt for women.

  8. Mark K10:08 PM

    I like this blog but don't come for it for lessons on game...

  9. Thank you for the good writeup. It in fact was a amusement account it. Look advanced to far added agreeable from you! By the way, how could we communicate?

  10. Anonymous12:29 PM

    Roissy/heartiste has a post on dropping a vulnerability after establishing alpha cred, so the pratfall need not be a forced clutz move