Be A Gentleman; Or Kotaku Has Lost It

2

I’m sure by now anyone interested in gaming has heard of, if not read, that Kotaku article. I won’t link to it, but it’s the one about getting laid on Sonic sheets. The one in a hugely arrogant and insulting tone. The one that still seems to hold the thought of a “gamer girl” as a mythical creature rivaled only by the unicorn in its beauty and rarity. Well fuck Kotaku and fuck Kris Kail.

Go ahead and point your fingers and say “oh another hard man behind a keyboard playing white knight” then promptly go fuck yourself as well. I’m here to talk to the guys that Kail and Kotaku thought they had an audience for, but based on the comments, misjudged greatly. The guys that really are having a hard time juggling their intensely geeky interests and the ability to find a good woman. The guys that Kail thought he was talking to, before finding out that not everyone behind a controller is a crass asshole that carries a smug smile upon the sheets he should have tossed out over a decade ago.

Gentlemen, first thing is first. Grow up. This does not mean the cliched putting away of childish things, but instead the acceptance of some adult pleasures. Once you’re on your own for all of our sakes, ditch the damn Sonic sheets. Rather you’re in your own home or a dorm there is no excuse to not have learned that a minor “woman’s touch” in your living space can go a long way. Buy yourself some nice bedding, maybe frame some of the posters hanging on the walls, invest in Febreeze, and keep your home clean. Once you’ve taken care of the living quarters it would be wise to do a bit of research into typical social niceties.

[pullquote right]Gentlemen, first thing is first. Grow up. This does not mean the cliched putting away of childish things, but instead the acceptance of some adult pleasures. [/pullquote]What I’m saying here fellas is don’t be a douche. Open car doors, pull out chairs, pick up the bar tab, tip the wait staff well. Encourage conversation that does not revolve around the time you stayed up two days straight playing Grandia 2 on Dreamcast. There’s a huge world out there, and even the most devoted gamer needs to expand their horizons beyond the shelves holding their retro collection. If you find that the only interest you have is gaming I have to warn you that things will be tough out there. All people benefit from being well rounded, and in the singles scene the more topics you can discuss intelligently the better off you will be. Imagine how boring your dates will be if all you know in your city or town are the locations of the local used game shops and arcades. Learn about the interesting restaurants and bars that seem you may enjoy and visit them. Scout out how suitable these locations are for potential dates. Better yet, if you have places you really love and frequent them you might just run into someone while doing the pre-game shoot around.

It will always help by spending time around the fairer sex. Like so many other geeks, I suffered from social awkwardness around women and thought I would never overcome it. Surprisingly it’s incredibly easy to get over the ability to not lock up when talking to a lady that has caught your eye. Just like a Killer Instinct ultra combo it is going to take time and practice. Take an extra moment to chat with the coffee barista in the morning. Ask about the book you see the commuter reading on the bus. The point is to just chat with people, regardless of sex. The more socially adept you become the more desirable you will appear in your desire’s eyes. This is the real world speech craft skill. It will improve all aspects of your life, not just your love life. Hone it.

A bit of hard truth now. If you think you’re out of shape and undesirable…you might actually be. I know, I’ve been there. Still working on it as a matter of fact. If you seem to get zero bites from the ladies rather it be at class, happy hour, clubs, or online dating you might need to take a look in the mirror. Make a serious self assessment. Those things I mentioned about growing up and living like an adult? Those apply in your appearance as well. Not all women will want a man that has a closet comprised entirely of gaming t-shirts and ratty jeans. Buy a nice pair of jeans, a fresh pair of shoes, and a few nice shirts. Maybe change your hair, prevent your beard from being unkempt, or buy some new glasses. The clothes don’t entirely make the man, but to a certain extent it holds true. A bit harder truth is, if you think you’ve let yourself become a gelatinous cube that only shops at big and tall stores you need to re-arrange your priorities.

Don’t get pissed off! I’ve been fighting with my weight for the past five years. I’m still a long way from where I want to be, but I am working on it. You may need to as well. Now, the thought is to say “if she doesn’t love me for me then I don’t care” and you’re right…but the reality of life is that fat people are less attractive. You can compensate for it by honing those social skills and improving your style, but at some point the number of people you pursue versus the number that pursue you will show a vast disparity. Find a diet plan, hit the gym, buy a bike to ride to your weekly D&D game. I preach it again, a well balanced life is good for everyone. Getting in shape will help every aspect of your life, especially your love life.

It’s not easy going from being an insular creature to a social butterfly. It takes work, and you will fail. I was with one of the mythic “gamer girls” for almost seven years before we split up. I let myself go, losing all my social skills and putting on a great deal of weight. About a year after the break-up I decided to put myself back out on the market. I first invested in cheap, but totally adequate new furniture from Ikea for my apartment. I began working out and trying to eat better. I got over my fear of bars and other such settings. I explored my city in hopes to meet someone, but ended up enjoying all kinds of incredible things I never would have experienced if I continued on my path of 48 hours of Warcraft beginning every Friday night. After a bit of bad luck meeting someone one on one I decided to try online dating, and it worked.

If you may be a young lady hoping for advice to meet a nice guy, I wish I could help. I think most of these things can apply, but I would be very presumptuous to assume that a woman chasing a man is identical to the opposite. We all know that’s not the case for a million reasons, justly or not. I can only say be strong and don’t fall to peer pressure that you need a man to complete you.

I met lots of great women between the moment I decided to begin dating again, and the day I met my current girlfriend. I was shocked at the mass of ladies that were interested in me once I began online dating.  At the risk of being crass, I have to admit the first time I had a one night stand I felt horrible…until I realized a girl purely wanted me for my physical capacities. For someone that was fighting feelings of undesirability and rapid weight gain that fact that a beautiful woman had unleashed her carnal desires unto me was quite a self esteem boost. I honestly wasn’t sure how to react, until I came to the realization that that is just the world we live in and accepted it as part of the dating scene. People sleep around often.

Just don’t be the asshole with Sonic sheets. A good woman will appreciate 1,000 thread count.