in which the Author reveals that PUA-style pickup game is not for everyone**

The best is yet to be,
The last of life, for which the first was made:
[your] times are in [your] hand
[so say] “A whole I planned”

— adapted from robert browning

**this fact is almost universally overlooked in “the community”, not least because noting it would drastically slash the size of the target audience to which the community’s ersatz leaders hawk their products.

let’s begin by throwing personality types into a sieve, sifting vigorously, and seeing what shakes out.

broadly speaking, men’s ways of striving for experience and achievement — in the very inclusive sense of the term, covering everything from boldfaced résumé mainstays to drunken escapades — lie on a continuum.

at one extreme of this continuum are what i’ll call “vertical integrators”, men who seek to build something cumulative, with many overlaid layers of significance, development, and meaning. these are the thoroughgoing monomaniacs who dedicate their lives to building specific industry-niche businesses at work, or, if they find no such calling, to creating the industry niches themselves; to developing hard-earned talents, with a flat return curve prior to virtuoso level, at their esoteric pursuits; and to building large, patriarchal families.

at the other extreme are what i’ll call “horizontal integrators”, the dilettantes, dabblers, rogues, and picaroons who look to sample as many different swatches as possible from the mottled tapestry of life. drifters in good days and derelicts in bad, these are the restless transients who defy the law prohibiting perpetual motion. at work, at play, and in (and out of and in and out of and in and out of) love, they value diversity over depth. they are like junk bonds — their values may vary greatly from one hour to the next — but they never stray too far from the notion that quantity has a quality all its own.

these two categories correspond, very roughly, to one narrowly defined dimension of the alpha/beta dichotomy, although it would be foolish to define a reductionist alpha/beta dichotomy according to them.

the above is not a binary, nor is it a bimodal distribution; it’s a continuum on which lies a skewed bell curve, whose median lies on the side of vertical integration.

surely there are some chameleons, who masquerade as vertical integrators just long enough to have plausible deniability for their rogue exploits.
and for each of these sneaky fuckers, we can find an antithesis: a man of predominantly conservative disposition, who periodically emerges from the woodwork to white-knuckle a few peer-pressured bouts of chemically assisted derring-do, strutting and fretting his 15 minutes upon the stage in an ill-advised attempt to catch and sing the sun in flight.
these types notwithstanding, though, most men in modern western society are vertical integrators. of the minority who prefer azimuth to altitude, most will find themselves gazing inexorably further away from the horizon and toward the sky with the passing years, as time gradually whittles away their supply of the great horizontal integrator known as testosterone.

-.– — ..- –..– – — — –..– … …. .- .-.. .-.. .–. .- … …

ok, so, who cares?
you should.
because, for vertical integrators (that’s most of you guys out there), pick-up artistry is a sweet-tasting, slow-acting poison.

if you are a vertical integrator working at building or improving a long-term relationship, then do not use mystery-method-style PUA techniques.
notice the word “techniques”. you can and should still use reputable PUA material — especially from sources that have achieved prominence based on quality alone — to strip away the pretty lies and reconstruct the real real world, from first principles.
but, unless you’re getting incredibly lucky at an oversized game of battleships, you should not proceed a1 a2 a3 c1 c2 c3 s1 s2 s3 with your long-term prospect. this sequence can and will get you laid, but in the long term it will almost certainly be counterproductive, causing you to be blown out of the water as soon as the proverbial paint begins to dry.

first, understand that PUA game is to long-term relationships what a hammer is to a phillips-head screw; although one would think it obvious from the name, many people need to be reminded that PUA techniques are designed for pick-up, not for hold ’em.
it is designed for a task whose payoffs are not cumulative. it’s pure horizontal integration — a sisyphean task, of essentially constant difficulty level, repeated ad nauseam.
can you learn to write a novel by writing 1000 opening vignettes?
can you become a chessmaster by becoming really good at the catalan?
you can’t.
but the PUA fellows are telling, and selling, the notion that you can.
fool, money, parted.
worse, though, PUA techniques are not just some inert chemical in the mix of a long-term relationship. in the conception, nurturing, and birth of a long-term relationship, PUA techniques play the role of thalidomide — allowing the birth to occur, but crippling the potential and shortening the life of the bond.
as stated before, women are elastic bands.
effective PUA game works by stretching those bands at an extremely rapid velocity — rapid enough to produce consistent and reliable one-night stands for proficient practitioners.
and yes, haters, it works.
so what’s the problem?
the problem is that PUA technique gets you from point a to point s3 really quickly, and then locks up like a grocery cart that’s just hit the yellow line around the parking lot.
do you want your nascent relationship to end not with a bang, nor with a whimper, but with the dull thud of a grocery cart ramming into your solar plexus?
didn’t think so.
neither did neil strauss, who was the best pua in the world until he met his own grocerycarterloo — when his beloved lisa leveridge, about whom he had waxed so sentimental at the end of the game, unceremoniously dumped him after the exact period of time that normally characterizes rotating polyandry.
want to make it across the desert? don’t drive the car that goes really fast but gets six miles per gallon.