There’s A Difference Between Being Enthusiastic With Someone And Enthusiastic AT Someone.

(NOTE: Based on time elapsed since the posting of this entry, the BS-o-meter calculates this is 0.603% likely to be something that Ferrett now regrets.)

I don’t care for anime, on the whole. And I have been trapped in convention conversations where a woman is spewing anime information at me, and I tell her I don’t know that show, and she proceeds to tell me all about her love for some spiky-haired cartoon person and I have no idea what’s going on, and I would leave but unfortunately I made the unwise decision to wait in the same line as her.

I have also had excellent conversations about anime where I still didn’t care much for it, but the person discussed their love for some spiky-haired cartoon person and I went, “Oh! That’s interesting.”

The difference?

They paid attention to me.

In the first case, the woman wasn’t there to participate in a discussion – they had a firehose of facts they found interesting that they wanted to turn upon someone, and I was nearby. When I said “I don’t know that show,” they didn’t attempt to inform me why I should care about that show, but proceeded to tell me why they cared about that show – in the process, usually omitting facts that I would need to understand basic concepts like “What is this show about?”

In the second case, the woman was there to share a love with me, and as such they gave me a quick pitch for the show, and I said “Oh, that’s interesting!” and they proceeded to tell me about why this show was different from American shows, basically homing in on the aspects I asked questions in. Which made it a dialogue.

The basic difference in these conversations were twofold:

One was there to tell me how they felt about things.

The other was there to see how I felt about things.

And I bring this up because yeah, the nerdy “Don’t spew about your D&D character” is usually Socialization 101. (Not that there’s anything wrong with 101 courses.) But when I talked about how men often talk their way out of sex with women, there was an interesting sub-aspect to that:

See, men are often trained by society that they have to be interesting to women. Whichโ€ฆ isn’t exactly wrong, because dick is cheap and abundant. A lot of seduction conversations are two-sided – the man is asking, “Will this woman have sex with me?” and the woman is asking, “Will this man give me sex that I’ll find fulfilling?”

So what a lot of men get taught to do is to spew their interestingness. They have a nice car. They work out. They have a good job. They broadcast all the things they have been taught that women find attractive (NOTE: this is not necessarily the same as what women do find attractive, which is why a staggering number of dick shots get sent prematurely), and they just sort of hope this cloud of Interesting leads them on the path to laiddom.

But in the process of doing that, they often forget to listen. They’re telling the woman how they feel about politics or news stories, but completely overlook how their partner is reacting to this.

And as I said yesterday, “If you can’t listen to her when she tells you about her job, you sure as well won’t listen to her when she tells you about her vagina.”

So you know, it’s not wrong to talk about your car or your fishing techniques or your politics. But it is wrong – at least, if you’re trying to forge a connection strong enough for a person to let you into their bed – to just firehose out a spiel that boils down to “I AM A VERY INTERESTING PERSON AND YOU SHOULD WANT TO HAVE SEX WITH ME” if you’re not actually going to notice when and what the woman says back.

Again. That’s close to Social Interactions 101. But judging from the many comments I got across the social medias yesterday, a lot of men still aren’t getting it. So lemme boil it down for you:

If you’re striking up a conversation in the hopes of sex, in many cases, listening will get you laid a lot more than talking.

Next up: Why Listening Isn’t Just Nodding Your Head And Agreeing With Everything She Says, Or: Why Am I Still Not Getting Any Interested Women When I’m Not Actually Contributing Anything To Their Lives?

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