Women Don't Lie,
Men Don't Listen
Archive 2006

Does John Stamos make Them Feel Safe and Secure?

Hey Doc,

No offense, but your book does not offer good advice for all men.

In particular, good-looking men who inadvertently intimidate women with their appearance should not follow your advice on “getting women to chase you.” In your book, you allude to playing games with women to make them believe that you are not very interested in them. In turn, they are supposed to chase you to win you over, right? Wrong! It’s common knowledge that women are typically not as confident as men. So why would they place themselves in such a vulnerable position? Why would they want to be hurt or feel even more insecure?

Then you offer more advice that makes women think that you are a flat-out player, and that every woman in town wants you! I hate to break it to you, Doc, but this only creates stress on the female’s part, and stress does not lead to more attraction. Stress leads to an increased desire for stress reduction and removal. In other words, forget this guy! I’m surprised you don’t know this; Doc, but women want control. Women want security and loyalty from a man, not a man who can have any woman he wants. That, my friend, is not security!

I used your techniques on a great woman, Rain, and I blew it because of your advice. She started with very high Interest Level. I could give you a whole pile of evidence, but I want to keep this short. The “game” you had me playing left her confused and scared. All women have a history of being hurt. Why would I want them to think they are bound to get hurt again? It just makes no sense. You should create another book for men who have no problem attracting women, but do have a problem with intimidating and scaring them away.

I’ll leave you with this: “Everyone would love to own a Lamborghini, but not if it means driving it on the edge of a cliff.”

Roman - who blew it with your book

Hi Roman,

I hate to break this to you, but my book is great for ALL guys. If a guy likes women, then “The System” is for him.

Now let me tell you something: a good-looking guy might intimidate a woman going in, but once he starts talking and comes off like a buffoon, he’s nowhere. He thinks the lady’s Interest Level is up in the sky while she’s laughing inside. So good looks will get you going, but they don’t keep you there.

I don’t – and never did -- advise playing any games with women, pal. But here’s the way the strategy works. You have no idea what a woman’s motives are when you meet and why she’s with you. You’re going out with a complete stranger. So what I’m telling guys is that they have to go in SLOWLY, keep their eyes open, and look for red flags. If that’s playing games, then sign me up for the Olympics!

You completely missed my point if you think I want women to know a guy’s not interested. What turns them on is when they know you had a good time on the date. The truth is that the woman knows on a gut level what your Interest Level is. So what you’re doing by hanging back and not draping yourself all over a girl is being playful instead of a game-player. Then you’ve got her thinking to herself, “Look at the Self-Control this guy has! Every other guy in the world would have phoned me four hours after our first date, said what a great time we had, and by the way, can we get together next Saturday night?” And you know what that does, man? Like my cousin Fast Eddie Love says, “It absolutely blows up Challenge.”

And you missed another important point, pal. Women are supposed to chase you to win you over. Because when they have to fight to get you, it lasts longer and they respect you more.

But you think women can’t take it because they aren’t as confident as men. Hey, Roman, you should be giving speeches to women’s groups in colleges – they’d just love that statement! When it comes to men and women, ALL WOMEN ARE CONFIDENT. They may not be so sure of themselves flying an airplane or un-corking a champagne bottle, but when it comes to men, they have us down cold. Like my cousin General Love says, “You guys have no idea what you’re going up against!” And what’s worse, men talk down to women when they’re clueless about what women want or need.

A clinically sane woman will look at a man’s teasing, flirtatious behavior as playfulness. If you have an insecure woman -- who I don’t want you with in the first place – that kind of confident behavior is going to make her feel more insecure. To you Psych majors, insecure women hate Challenge. But a self-reliant woman with a good attitude loves Challenge. So “The System” protects guys by weeding out the women who aren’t good enough, the numbers with too many scars and baggage. Sorry about that!

Buddy, if you use Challenge on a woman who has all her marbles, she isn’t worried that you’re a player. She wonders if you’re a player. There’s a big difference. And she’s also wondering if she can catch you and she can get you to want to give up all the other girls, and that notion is attractive. So that’s one thing you hit right on the head, Roman – you want her to think that every other girl in town wants you. Because when her Interest Level is way up in the 90s, she thinks you’re the best-looking guy out of 3 billion men. Ask any woman if you don’t believe me.

Your theories about stress are really amusing, guy. You’re piling one lie on top of another. When you shower a babe with attention and concern, all it’s going to do is lower her Interest Level. It’s got nothing to do with stress. When you use Challenge, the girl with low Self-Esteem, the girl who’s been hurt a lot, is going to react by bitching and moaning and her Interest Level is going to waver. Then you’re going to blame my techniques for screwing you up. But as I tell you in my book, you have to give me something to work with. Like the great Doctor Freud once said, “Don’t bring me these loonies!”

Your theory on what stress breeds makes for a great sentence, but it has nothing to do with this article. Sure, I want her to forget this guy! I hope she gets rid of you! That’s how my principles protect you. If a woman can’t take a little teasing and have patience with my playful game plan in the beginning, then I don’t want to keep her anyway. I want someone who’s got a sense of humor and who’s playful.

So, women want control? You’re kidding! You got me on that one, Roman! Gee, I never would have known!

The point is not that a guy can have any woman he wants, but that he picked her and now they’re happily married. And she knows he would never mess around because the guy is loyal. And he’s secure in himself, and he’s also a playful Challenge.

Rain started with very high Interest Level because of your looks. (And then you started talking!) But let me get this straight. You met this girl, you waited seven days to call her and that just really messed with her head, right? Then you spent four and a half hours with her and because you didn’t call her right afterwards, she was confused and scared, right? Then you’re going to tell me that you went out with her again, had a great time, waited another seven days to call her and this created even more confusion and she’s practically out of her mind? Then I say good riddance! That’s the whole point. I want it that way. Because Challenge cleans the place up.

Next, you want me to believe that all women have a history of being hurt. Then how is it that women do 90% of the dumping? It’s the guys who are getting beat up, my friend. Roman, do you happen to belong to the “National Liberation of Women” movement?

Dude, good for you that you look like George Clooney or Pierce Brosnan or Brad Pitt. With your looks you should be choosing from tons of women, especially if you understood my philosophy. But you’re missing it completely. It’s astonishing, because I can tell by your letter that you’re a very intelligent man. But when it comes to women, you get a D.

This is the truth of the matter: “The System” protects you. It doesn’t hang you over a cliff. It keeps you in the center of the road.

Remember, guys: some guys just don’t get it.

Does Denzel ever Fall for Another Babe?

I need your advice on a problem.

Shannon has been my girlfriend now for almost a year and a half and I never cheated on her. Well, about two months ago I started going regularly to a bar in my neighborhood. The bartender, Gina, was very attractive and I couldn’t help but look at her. One of my friends (a woman) knows her and introduced us. One night we all went out after she got through bartending and Gina and I got close. At the end of the night I went for a kiss goodnight. For the next few weeks Gina and I went out once or twice a week. I let her know I had a girlfriend, and she said it didn’t matter. I asked if she had a boyfriend, and she said they just broke up.

Well, during the second week, Gina and I got very romantic. That night she must have given me a hundred compliments. She kept saying that I was the perfect man. One of my friends from work told me that he thought Gina was still seeing her boyfriend, and I confronted her. I let her know that I didn’t care if she was seeing someone, but that I wanted her to be honest with me. She stuck with her story that it was over between her and her ex. We then made plans to get together again.

The night of our date I called her to confirm. Hours went by and she didn’t call back. I called again and told her that I didn’t want to play games, and she finally sent me a text message that said “I’m at the hospital with my dad.” I wrote back and said “And you couldn’t have called to let me know that?” And she responded “Not to be mean, but that was the last thing on my mind.” She let me know she was angry with me. I told her I wasn’t trying to be ignorant, but when I make plans with someone and she can’t even let me know about an emergency, then it’s disrespectful, and I won’t take disrespect from anyone.

Doc, I know that I’m cheating, but Gina is a 9.5. She gets hit on constantly. She’s used to getting what she wants, and I didn’t want to play that game. Do you think she’s lying about seeing her ex?

Finally, do you think I did the right thing with Gina or did I make too many mistakes? Is there anything I can do from this point on or should I just let her go?

North - who doesn’t know what he’s doing

Hi North,

It’s amazing how guys will contact me when they have a problem with a babe, but they won’t contact me when everything is going well. Very few guys that I sell – probably only about 5% -- say that they want to make sure they’re doing all the right stuff, and that’s why they got the Dating Dictionary. They’re not out to snag the girl – because they already have a great one, and she’s all over him – but just to make sure they keep her happy, just to have that slight edge going forward, they buy my book. Like my Uncle Jethro Love says, “Which side of the fence are you on, boy?”

As far as hanging around your neighborhood gin mill goes, pal, you’re allowed to do something like that once. Just once. You spot a girl like Gina, she happens to look like Angelina Jolie’s younger sister, and all of a sudden you’re in trouble. All you’re going to do is go back there and look at her some more when you already have a great girlfriend. That was your first mistake. Let me tell you something: if you go back to that joint a second time when you’re so physically attracted to the bartender, you’re cheating on Shannon. (See, girls? I’m not so bad after all!)

Mistake number two was actually going out with Gina. First you’re ogling her, next you’re dating her. Didn’t it matter that you already had a girlfriend? Apparently not. And apparently it didn’t bother Gina at all. Hey, I have to hand it to you, North -- she’s a classy broad. Like my cousin Brother Love down in Watts says, “I see she’s got high standards straight out of the chute!” And by the way, you should have found out why she got rid of her boyfriend.

This red-hot bartender may have given you thousands of compliments, but your girlfriend’s got 18 months in with you. Gina doesn’t even have 18 hours in with you.

Now why the heck are you talking to a friend at your job about this total knockout? Don’t you know what a BLOCKER is, dude? You better go back to my book and look under “B.” Know what? Your friend was just trying to make a fool out of you. He was pushing you to go and get into an argument with Gina over nothing. Which is exactly what he succeeded in doing.

Of course you care if Gina’s seeing someone else – you brought it up, didn’t you? If you didn’t care, you wouldn’t have made an issue of it in the first place, so who the heck are you kidding? It’s like when a woman says “I don’t care if a guy has money or not.” Then why’d she mention it? Duh!

You want Gina to be “honest” with you? She doesn’t care if she steals a guy with a long-term steady girlfriend and you’re worried about honesty? That’s like trying to turn a tiger into a housecat or asking Hugh Hefner to stay away from 19-year-olds. You’re a funny guy, North.

Now, when this hospital situation came up, you had to take it for what it was. Gina wasn’t exactly at the post office trying to buy stamps to make sure her business correspondence got out and she got held up because there were 30 people in line that day. The point is this: she told you that her dear old dad was in the hospital. Her story is either true or it’s false, but we’re going to give her the benefit of the doubt. So let’s say it’s true. If her father was in the hospital having an emergency appendectomy, she didn’t have to call you. So you’re completely off base on this. Gina should be angry with you for being an insensitive boor.

Ah, but you won’t take disrespect. Does there have to be a riot in the city before you’ll let someone off the hook? What does it take to convince you there’s a genuine problem? A tornado? An earthquake? Get real here, North. And dude, LOVE IS A GAME. Get that straight right now.

I don’t think Gina’s lying about not seeing her ex. I’ll bet she’s already got at least two new ducks lined up for when she gets tired of you (which shouldn’t be long now). This girl doesn’t fool around. Like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “Hey, man -- you forget where this girl works!”

But we should be crying in our beer over poor Shannon – not you and Gina. Because the poor girl’s Interest Level is high, and you’re going to dump her. Or you’re going to get caught fooling around.

You better tell your girlfriend Shannon to move on, guy. Do her a favor. To you Psych majors, unless you’re going to be loyal to a girl, don’t go steady with her.

You’re going to let Gina go? North, it’s not your dear old daddy who’s in the hospital! You got no say in the matter. Like my cousin Fast Eddie Love says, “When she looks like Scarlett Johansson, you don’t stand a chance!”

So here’s what you’re going to do. You’re going to buy a card and write; “I hope your dad feels better” on the right-hand side. And on the left-hand side you’re going to add, “I was completely out of line when I got on your case for not calling me. And I hope your dad feels better. When you feel up to it, give me a call and we’ll get together.” And you’re going to send it to Gina.

But you’ve got to get rid of Shannon before you escalate this thing with your “10” bartender. And you have to do a little studying. Let’s face it, buddy, you’re making blunders all over the place. You’re calling to verify dates. You’re blabbing to blockers. I don’t think so, guy. You’ve got a long way to go to hold onto either of these women.

Remember, guys: when you have a good one, don’t mess around.

How does Hugh Hefner Handle All Those Young Babes?

Hey Doc,

I’m in my mid-thirties, newly divorced, and have my own business. I recently purchased “The System” in an attempt to understand what went wrong with my marriage and not repeat the mistakes of the past.

After my divorce, but before I bought your book, I met an 18-year-old girl, Jami, through my business. She was and still is a regular customer. Our first date was to a concert. She invited me at the last minute and I foolishly accepted. The second time was to see a movie, also a last-minute invite. The third time was another concert, planned in advance. All three times one or more of her girlfriends came along. The fourth time was dinner with her parents, and I insisted on treating.

From your book it seems I did everything wrong. I bought Jami expensive presents. I complimented her too much. We also e-mailed and text-messaged every day.

Then she asked me for a job at my company. I told her I had concerns about that because I had feelings for her. She responded that she didn’t have feelings for me, but wanted to be friends. I told her it would be too painful. This was all via e-mail and instant message.

After this, we stopped communicating for the most part. Occasionally she e-mails asking what I’m up to, and I’ve always responded. In her most recent message she asked for assistance with one of her college projects. (She wants to be an actress, by the way.)

My gut tells me that Jami is an immature, inflexible taker, and that she’s not the one for me, but I find her very attractive. Doc, what should I do? Should I respond to her need for assistance? What do you think Cary Grant would do in this situation?

I would appreciate it if you could give me some guidance on this matter.

Frederic - who got your book a little too late

Hi Frederic,

You didn’t just purchase “The System.” You invested in your life. You decided to protect your sanity. You gave yourself a guarantee that you’ll never have to lie on a shrink’s couch bawling over some ditzy babe.

Pal, the vast majority of guys repeat the mistakes of the past. Know what Judy, Caprice, Lynn, and Amber all say? “This guy’s needy.” But let’s get on to your problem.

So, Jami’s all of 18 years old? Come on, Frederic -- what are you going to do, adopt this girl? But you did the right thing by going along when she asked you out. Take note, because this is what I call an “advanced class.” When a girl comes at you, when she invites you out, you have to GO. I don’t care if you’re the third or fourth dude on her list; if you go along for the ride, you might end up number one or two. And that’s why you go for it. Like my Uncle Jethro Love says, “When she tells you to start the dance, you say ‘Baby, turn up the music!’”

When Jami invited you to the movies that was the second time she asked you out. Freddie, you’re moving up! Like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “You’re really swattin’ flies now, baby!” Then a concert planned in advance? Wow. You started out as hamburger, next thing you know you’re Chateaubriand!

Now, guy, you know I’m against group dates, but you had to go along with Jami when she asked you out with her friends because she’s just out of diapers and needs chaperones. I know this sounds silly, but these 18- to 22-year-olds have to run you past their girlfriends for approval first. Like the old Chinese proverb goes, “That’s ding-dong rule number one!” You’re a nice guy and she was bragging about you. You worked this girl nicely, man.

And by the way, you better only get together with this girl at night because I don’t want her seeing your sagging jowls and all those deep lines and saddlebags under your eyes!

It’s perfect that you insisted on treating for dinner when you stepped out with Jami’s parents. That’s exactly what Cary Grant would have done, too. And, hey -- you’re meeting the folks!

So you’re being too hard on yourself, Frederic. You did lots of things right – up to this point. But now here’s the downside.

You only buy expensive presents for your fiancé or your wife. Big mistake, Frederic. You don’t stick 10 or 15 grand on the credit card for this little girl. Like my cousin Fast Eddie Love says, “Before you open up your wallet, you gotta swing an alone date with her, man.”

My book tells you to limit your compliments. You had the book, but you didn’t MEMORIZE it, and when you were confronted with this stunning 18-year-old nymph (who belongs on the cover of Elle magazine), it’s understandable that you weakened. But you pulled another boner, Frederic.

E-mailing and text-messaging this honey every single day was a huge blunder. To you Psych majors, Challenge means you’re out in North Dakota because the United States Federal Witness Protection Program put you there -- you can’t be found until your next date!

And to ice the cake, you just couldn’t hold yourself back and had to blabber about all the feelings you have for Jami….Frederic, what in the world are you doing baring your soul to this child? Like my cousin Rabbi Love says, “You got kids older than this girl!” Talk about begging! Talk about weak!

Of course Jami doesn’t have feelings for you -- but she loved your Visa card. That’s one out of two. But if I were you I’d be friends with Jami – but you’re going to be kissing her on her doorstep. You told her it was too painful to be friends via e-mail? I’ll bet that raised Interest Level at least 10 points!

You and Jami didn’t stop communicating, buddy – she dropped you like a bad habit. When she contacts you from now on, tell her you’ve got a heavy love problem. You’re dating twin Playmates -- Miss January and Miss July of 2007 -- and they’re fighting like cats over you. And you really like Miss January because she has a great sense of humor, but there’s something about Miss July you love too. The problem is that her legs are too long. What’s a poor guy to do? Ask her for a suggestion.

Wanting help with her college course and dreaming about becoming an actress is a double whammy. Tell Jami that you’ll help her with her project but first she has to come over to your house and cook dinner.

I have no doubt whatsoever that you find Jami very attractive, my friend. And that makes two of you – you and the U.S. Army. How should you handle it now? Disappear. It’s your only hope. What would Cary Grant do in your position? Mostly the opposite of what you’ve been doing.

Remember, guys: if she’s beautiful and between 18 and 22, don’t try to buy her.

Does Julia Roberts use "The System"?

Hey Doc,

I’m writing you from Scandinavia. I’ve studied your book and listened to your radio show, and I have to tell you that in the beginning I was skeptical. But I have to admit that more and more it makes sense. But how do you manage a woman who’s using “The System” on you?

I’m 51 and have been seeing Lisa for more than two months. We just had our eleventh date. She calls me often, but she does all the things I’m supposed to do. For instance, she waits for me to touch her. She always guides the conversation to topics she wants to discuss. She spoon-feeds me the dates she wants us to have. In short, she keeps me guessing and on my toes.

Lisa has three jobs and three kids and her sports hobbies take up the rest of her time. If it weren’t for her inviting me out, I would assume that she’s lost interest. Jokingly I asked her what she expected of me at the party she recently invited me to, and she said without hesitation, “Just don’t flirt with my friends!”

So it’s a bit of a cold war, Doc. I try to play it cool, too, by not talking about the future or my feelings. I try to keep the conversation light and tease her often. But she is a very attractive woman and I feel that her Interest Level is lower than mine, and I think I should do something radical or quit. Maybe Lisa is just a user -- but then she’s very sweet and Giving when we meet, she’s always on time and never plays games.

It is difficult to find times to meet since I have two kids from my previous marriage as well. Maybe five kids between us is the problem. What I’m most worried about with Lisa is too little touching and that she never speaks about the future. But she always kisses me on the mouth when we meet and she sometimes takes my hand to caress it.

What do you think, Doc? Should I try another tactic?

Ellis - who can’t get out from under her thumb

Hi Ellis,

You should be skeptical about what you hear and read. Because there are 10,000 love doctors running around out there giving advice and guys, you have to be discriminating. But guess what? None of the others talk about CHALLENGE. Why is it more of these so-called geniuses don’t talk about Challenge? Have the Feministas brainwashed us to the point where it’s not even on the radar screen?

But let’s get on to your problem. If Lisa waits for you to touch her and you’re bent out of shape about it, the solution is simple: just don’t touch her. You’re the one who caves in first, Ellis. If there’s no physical contact between you and Lisa, fine – there’s no contact. Live with it. But you’re not going to touch her. Let her give in first. The reality is that you’re not both using “The System.” She is, but you aren’t!

What’s the problem with letting Lisa choose whatever she wants to gab about? Let her go where she wants with the conversation. And let her talk until the cows come home. As Doctor Freud once said, “Women reach a state of euphoria when they’re blabbing about nothing.”

But let’s look at this thing more closely, pal. Lisa keeps you on a long leash, but when she shows up for a date, she’s the best thing since cheap gasoline prices. There’s nothing wrong with this girl. So I don’t know what you’re moaning about.

You should be kept guessing and on your toes, Ellis – it’s part of the dating dance. And you’ll dish out the same treatment to Lisa by not touching her anymore. If her plate is filled with all kinds of duties and activities, let her call you when she’s ready. It’s that simple. Don’t ask her out. And don’t worry -- she’ll ask you out.

Don’t fret about her Interest Level, either. She’s the one asking you out despite her overloaded schedule, right? Like my Uncle Jethro Love says, “She’s helping you out, dodo!”

But apparently that’s not good enough for you. You had to go and ask Lisa what she expected of you. In other words, you were begging -- begging to know where you stand in the relationship. There’s a chapter called “Begging” in the Dating Dictionary. You should go back over that one, dude, and stop yourself from wrecking it with Lisa before it even gets off the ground.

When she ordered you not to flirt with her friends she came off sounding like a very classy lady. I don’t see where the cold war is here, Ellis. You go out, you have a great time, and Lisa kisses you good night. What else do you want from this girl? You act like she’s a 17-year-old high school kid who has just a few classes and Phys Ed to worry about. This lady’s got three jobs, three kids, and she’s in training for the 2008 Olympics on top of it all. Come on, man – she’s busy!

And you know what? Three jobs proves she’s a good catch. Like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “She’s not going to sit on her fat butt and wait for you to hand her your money!”

Forget the urge to talk about the future or your precious feelings, Ellis. Just sit back and enjoy the trip. This babe’s about as perfect as they come. Like my cousin Fast Eddie Love says, “You got any idea how many guys in America would like to date this girl?”

I don’t think Lisa’s Interest Level is any lower than yours. But it’ll make Dubya’s approval ratings look high if she senses your insecurity and you keep shooting your mouth off about what she expects of you. You want a radical tactic? Keep your trap shut. That’s the way you’ll keep her.

Where are you getting the notion that Lisa’s a user? Ellis, you’re in la-la land. Try laying off the Jack Daniels, my friend. You’re telling me she’s sweet and Giving, always on time and never plays games. Like I said before, what else do you want from her? Remember, three kids and three jobs? Hello? To you Psych majors, there’s only 24 hours in a day!

But if you can’t come to grips with common sense and logic, look at it this way. If Lisa’s so tied up with her life, it means she can’t be cheating on you with somebody else. She’s got three kids, three jobs, athletic training and a boyfriend! Where’s she going to find time to squeeze another guy in on the side?

Don’t worry about how you two are going to get together. You’ll work it out. Get yourself a babysitter and a backup babysitter. Overpay them and they’ll jump whenever you call.

The problem isn’t five kids between you and Lisa. The problem is that you have my book and you’re not using it.

So relax about the future and the touching. You two have only been on 11 dates. What do you want her to do, slobber all over you? She’s a class act, not a desperado. And wait a minute here. All of a sudden she’s caressing your hand? I thought you said she didn’t touch you?

You have to memorize my book, Ellis. And P.S., try to interpret it properly. You’ve got a good woman here. Relax and enjoy the ride. Lisa’s not a high school cheerleader and you’re not the star quarterback of the football team. Those days are gone.

Remember, guys: when they have three kids and three jobs, it’s okay for them to make the dates.

Are Charlie Sheen and Denise Richards On or Off?

Hey Doc,

I used to go out with this girl, Megan. We spent three and a half months together, and during those three and a half months I broke up with her once due to her bitchiness, difficult attitude and also because she used to meet her ex-boyfriend and I couldn’t take it. She cheated on her boyfriend with me before we hooked up together, and then she finally left him for me.

I left her for the second time just recently. I know that she’s met up with her ex many times (he asked her) and that he’s kissed her. She said she didn’t want him to, and then turned around and said it’s her fault and that she’s sorry she let him. However, we are still very close, we love each other, and we also date on a regular basis. She says that whenever I kiss her it feels right.

I see Megan often since we go to the same school. We both talk to our friends about our relationship, and she’s told my best friend she doesn’t want a commitment and wishes to start fresh with someone else in the future. She’s told me this too, then turns around and tells me she doesn’t know what she really wants. She says she wants to be free but that she’s certain about one thing -- she never wants to lose me and she needs my hugs and kisses, and she has to see me and talk to me. She says she adores me and that I’m a treasure. She swears she’ll always be there for me.

Doc, I’m so confused. I didn’t leave Meg for no reason. Her bitchiness and flirting got to me. But when I see her act all sweet and loving, I start wondering whether I made the right decision. I don’t know if I want Megan back, but I can’t stand even thinking about her with someone else. If she wants freedom, why does she NEED things from me?

Please help me.

Andy - who’s never been so confused in his life

Hi Andy,

So, you couldn’t take the fact that your girl was getting together with her ex? Then why did you go back for more? As my cousin Doctor Freud once wrote, “The boy must be a glutton for punishment.” She left her ex for you? Like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “Hey, this girl sounds like the loyal type!”

Let’s face it, Andy, when Megan met up with her ex, the guy didn’t exactly have to put a bow and arrow to her head, did he? He gets to kiss her, doesn’t he? You mean she didn’t turn her head when he went for her lips? She didn’t push him away? She didn’t take at least one step backwards? Well, now it makes sense! Now I see how the guy got away with it!

What you should be asking yourself, Andy, is how much of the whole story of her extracurricular activities Megan is really giving you. If she’s telling you to your face that her ex is smooching her and that it’s her fault, can you imagine what’s really going on? Like my cousin Fast Eddie Love says, “If she’s willing to cough up this much, you sure she’s not working you?”

When she kisses you and says that it feels so right, you should ask her – like one former President of the U.S. would – to define “right.” Is it “right” enough that she’ll stop seeing her ex? Apparently not.

On my gosh, Andy -- you talk to WHO about Megan? What have I told you guys again and again? Never talk to anybody – except for me -- about your relationship. Why don’t you just have “I LOVE YOU, MEGAN!” printed on 10,000 fliers, rent a helicopter, then fly over the college and throw them out the window?

You can believe or disbelieve what your best friend is telling you about your girlfriend, pal, but with the way things are going with her, I’d have to say, “It’s a lock you’re going down!”

But what the heck, Megan tells you the very same thing, right? She practically broadcasts her desire for other men to the world. Like my Uncle Jethro Love says, “And you keep chasing this girl? Whatsa matter wif you, boy?”

I don’t know why man was given an EGO. It’s the most dangerous thing in the world. The EGO clouds vision. It puts blinders on you, until all you can see is your own desire. And like my cousin Rabbi Love says, “When it comes to women, men are STUPID enough to begin with.”

So don’t snow yourself, buddy. Megan knows what she really wants. She wants to get rid of you and find a new stooge!

But you insist on believing that she adores you and thinks you’re a “treasure.” Those are two really extreme words -- and she’s confused about her feelings towards you? Hel-lo! Welcome to the Wonderful World of Womanese!

But not to worry, Andy. Just like she promised, Megan will always be there for you. Heck, she’ll even let you be best man at her wedding!

Sure, Megan’s bitchiness and flirting got to you, and that’s understandable. But what about all the mistakes you made, guy? What about all the things you did wrong? Maybe that’s what sank her Interest Level; did you ever think of that? (This of course is in addition to the fact that she has a bad attitude!)

But let’s be real here, Andy. Megan could tell you to jump off the Brooklyn Bridge and you’d do it. She’s got you right where she wants you. To you Psych majors, “She works the man’s ego with the skill of an acclaimed artist!”

You might not want to think about your squeeze with someone else, man, but that’s not the important thing here. The only thing that’s relevant is how Megan feels about you. Remember, HER Interest Level is the only thing that matters -- after her attitude. All the other stuff means nothing.

Want to know why Megan needs things from you? Because she wants a pet dog.

Remember, guys: women who love you are consistent.

Do Women Always Call Colin Farrell Back?

Hi Doc,

Thanks for all of your books. I’ve read and re-read them over and over. I’ve tried “The System” off and on for over a year -- and invariably I’m happy when I use it, and unhappy when I don’t!

The main difficulty I have is with phone calls, specifically, trying to catch the women at home. I’ve avoided calling their cell phones, but it does seem weird to have their number and not use it.

The second problem I have is that I get most of my numbers on Fridays. Waiting until the following week seems too long (10 days if I call on Monday), and calling on Sunday night seems awkward.

Here’s my current dilemma. I met Heather recently and on our first date she showed high Interest Level. She laughed at my jokes, hugged me once, said she had a good time, and twice told me she was glad I asked for her number. I feel this woman has real potential. She is Flexible and seems Giving.

I called her twice several days later (a Monday) at 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. -- no answer. I tried twice Tuesday, also no answer, and I left a short message saying that I called, but did not leave a call-back number nor did I ask her out. I know leaving any message is against your principles.

Doc, how do I proceed now? Have I blown it already? If I can’t catch them at home, do I just wait another week? Heather’s already asked about my marital status, whether I have kids, etc. Even though I played it cool but friendly on the date, she knows I am interested.

I have continued to try and use your techniques by asking another girl out and have another number to call next week, though it’s Heather I really like. Yet I do see the value in having more than one number! It’s really killing me to apply “The System” to this Beautiful Woman, though I have seen it work on women that I have ended up not pursuing further.

Thanks for any insight.

Marat - who can’t figure out how to take it from here

Hi Marat,

If you know that “The System” works, why in the world are you fighting it? If you go six months following my rules and everything is right, why would you change the order of things? What is it you don’t trust about my principles? Do you have to go out and test them, is that your problem? Are you out to find your own way of doing things? Do you want to prove me wrong? I may not be 100% right, but NO ONE COMES CLOSER THAN I DO. I bat 98.7%.

Guy, one question you should be asking yourself is exactly where Heather is when you call her at all different times of night and day and she doesn’t pick up. Now think about this. You got Heather’s home phone number and every time you call her she’s not there. Yet she’s carrying a phone around with her and you have that number. Why aren’t you calling her cell phone? You already played the other hand and it hasn’t worked. You’re lucky enough to have a cell phone as backup, so what are you waiting for?

Marat, all you have to do is phone a girl on Wednesday or Thursday, and set up a date for Monday or Tuesday night. That’s all there is to it -- simple.

So, Heather gave you a squeeze. Wow. I’m knocked out. Seriously, I don’t know why you guys get off on hugging. I’ve got an aunt who’s 93. She’s a great lady. When we get together we hug. Dig? So I wouldn’t place too much stock in it. But if a girl pulls you in like that on a date, go for a kiss on the lips. If you can’t pull that off, go for a kiss on the cheek. Let’s press the issue here. (Unless of course the woman owns the company you work for, then you don’t try to kiss her -- obviously.)

So, you feel Heather has real potential. Why? You know nothing about this woman, dude. You’re going out with a complete stranger. You’re dishing out all this praise just because she did a couple of right things? Boy, I’d love to be student in your class! To you Psych majors; she’s got no time in. Tell me in six months that you trust her – then we’re talking about something.

And she’s Flexible and Giving to boot. How do you know that, Marat? You’re just dying to give this woman accolades, aren’t you? Which means your Interest Level is way up in the nineties. Unfortunately, that’s not what counts. As my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “It’s better not to adore them.”

Why didn’t you call Heather at 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. and 9 p.m. instead of banging on your redial button right after you called her the first time? The times you phoned were way too close together. If she sees your number come up on her caller ID she’s going to think to herself, “Look at this guy – he went berserk! What did he do – have 16 cups of espresso and hit the phone lines? Or is he that desperate?”

Then you go and break a cardinal rule by leaving a message, but you don’t leave a number to help Heather to call you back. Really slick, man. Like my Uncle Jethro Love would say, “I’d never want to go hunting with you or Mister Cheney!”

If you know that leaving a message is against my principles, why on earth did you do it? In other words, pal, you can teach my techniques, but you can’t implement them. Does that make any sense? You can get up on a podium and teach “telephone blunders” to 200 guys in a seminar, but you can’t avoid making them yourself. Intellectually, you know what to do, but you can’t pull if off yourself. Know why? Like my cousin Fast Eddie Love says, “Because you’re whipped!”

Have you already blown it with Heather? Well, as they say at the racetrack, “It’s a lock!”

Marat, I’m curious to hear your answers to Heather’s questions. Did you get a big laugh out of her like you’re supposed to? When she asked, “Have you been married,” you should have said, “I’m married right now,” and watched her jump out of her seat. And then I hope you said, “Tell you what, we’re going to be one big happy family – you, me and my three wives up in Idaho!”

If Heather could tell you were interested in her on your date, then you weren’t cool at all. Go and watch Steve McQueen in The Getaway and Bullitt. That’s what cool really is. It’s not who you like, man – it’s who the woman wants. So you got it all backwards. Are you sure you got the right book?

The value of having lots of girls’ phone numbers is explained in the Dating Dictionary. It’s like playing poker with a strong hand. You have to study my book and get your act together. Then you have to be going through girls like water through a rainspout. You want to be shuffling three to five girls at any one time. As Doctor Freud once said, “The biology lab first, then field work.” You have to go back and forth from book to practice until you get smarter and more aware.

Marat, Marat, Marat – the whole idea is to apply “The System” to this Beautiful Woman! This is where DISCIPLINE comes in. Like my cousin General Love says, “You want to be a Marine on the dating battlefield? You gotta toughen up, son!”

What does seeing my techniques work on women you haven’t pursued have to do with anything? Of course they work! Why don’t we talk about the color of your grass? Is it green or gray?

You have to go to the library on Sundays, get jacked on coffee, turn off the cell phone, and pull out your magic marker and STUDY. Pretend you’re taking the state bar exam next week. You have to have my material MEMORIZED. Do it for four straight Sundays. You have a long way to go, my friend. You’re doing some things right, but you’re giving this girl way too much credit and she worked you. Don’t be so quick to give away the store.

Remember, guys: fools rush in where angels fear to tread.

Would George Clooney ever Give away His Love Strategies?

Hi Doc,

Hope all is well with you. Doc, I slipped up last night.

First, let me give you a little background. Yancy approached me on the street and asked me for my home phone number. I got hers as well. I was completely prepared to wait a week to call her, but after just four days she called and asked me out. It was an incoming offer, so I went.

When we went out, I kept everything light and funny, no heavy subjects, no putdowns, no compliments, and no touching. Yancy was doing all the touching and talking. I didn’t kiss her. The next day she left a text message saying “Hey, I just wanted to let you know that I had a lot of fun last night and I really enjoyed your company.”

Well, Yancy and I were out on our second date last night when she found the Dating Dictionary under the seat of my truck. (I forgot to take it out before I picked her up.) She flipped through it, then asked me to explain Interest Level and Womanese, which of course I did. She seemed to respond positively to the explanation. Then she asked me what I thought her Interest Level in me was, and I lied and told her 60% to 70%.

I know that it’s actually higher. Did I hurt my cause by breaking down Interest Level and Womanese to Yancy? Afterwards she asked me to go to dinner and dancing with her the next night. It was back-to-back dates (which I know from your book are no-no’s), but since it was an incoming offer I said yes.

Doc, do you think I should disappear now to build up more Challenge? What do you think about all this? Am I doing the right thing?

Thanks for your time. I love you, man. You’re the best.

Sonny - who doesn’t want to give his plan away

Hi Sonny,

First of all, I want to make sure I got this straight. You’re telling me you were walking along a public thoroughfare, Yancy saw you and said to herself, “Know what -- I’m going to walk up to this dude and take him out?” For a guy like me who faithfully watches Forensic Files and American Justice, it’s pretty darned scary. Like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “There are lots of loons lurking around out there!” If Yancy were my little sister, I’d give her a spanking for accosting a strange man.

But you two made a connection. Now think about this. Ninety percent of the guys in America would have called Yancy within the first two days of swapping numbers. The other 10% are pretty sharp with the girls. And I’m talking here about guys who haven’t been schooled on my techniques. I know you guys think I’m beating up on you all the time, but I’m really only beating up the dumb 90%, not the slick 10%. But by utilizing “The System” and a waiting period, you got this girl to crack up. Another guy would have been on the horn to Yancy within 48 hours of meeting her, and never allowed her the possibility of calling him. To you Psych majors, you scored an “A” in PATIENCE.

Your behavior on the first date was classy. I just hope you made Yancy laugh. And it’s good you didn’t touch her. Remember, you picked this girl up on the street, okay? Remember too that you can always kiss later. But in this circumstance, which I call an Advanced Class, because you just met this girl, and because of where you met her, you didn’t have to employ the usual “Kiss Test.” To you Psych majors, we’re slowing things down. And again, this is because you were complete strangers on a street when you met – which still bugs me.

But you flubbed it when Yancy text-messaged you with what a great time she had and how much she enjoyed being with you. You should have responded to this like Bobby De Niro would: “Tell me some more. I’m very intrigued.” In other words, you should have played with it. You could have gotten some humor out of that incoming missive, but you didn’t.

Know what you should have said to this babe when she found my book under your seat? “I trained that guy. I taught Doc Love everything he knows about women. Then he went and wrote that book. It should have been me.” And said it with a straight face. She would have been totally impressed, and you would have been in the driver’s seat.

But you never should have had the book in your truck in the first place. What is your cherished Dating Dictionary -- an almost sacred tome that is loaded with TRUTH -- doing underneath a seat in a truck with the cobwebs and fast-food wrappers? Like my Uncle Jethro Love says, “You got some dried squirrel skins under there too?”

Instead, for that second date you should have vacuumed and washed your car and blackened your black walls. Your vehicle would have been in perfect shape then, in case Yancy’s a cootie freak. And that way you would have noticed my book and taken it out of there and you would never have gotten into the situation and had to answer questions. But we can still clean this up.

Viewed from another angle, it’s good that Yancy discovered it because it allows you to test her attitude. If she concludes, “I hate to admit it, but this Doc Love is right on as far as dating goes,” then you got yourself a potential keeper. But if she doesn’t get it, she’s going to be brutal to deal with.

Your answer to her question about her Interest Level wasn’t humorous. To boot, you didn’t shoot a question right back at her. Like my cousin General Love says, “Soldier, you’re on the front line, and you have to move forward!”

Here’s the rule – when a woman hits you with a tricky question, you’re supposed to come right back and be a clown. As the Chinese proverb goes, “If you’re not a clown, Grasshopper, you’re gonna be the fool!” When Yancy tried to pin you down on her Interest Level, your snappy comeback should have been “I don’t what it is now, but I’ll tell you this: at the end of three months -- if you make it that far -- it’s going to be in the nineties!”

But you didn’t significantly hurt your cause. Because women know that men hate any type of self-help when it comes to relationships, and Sonny, you stepped out of that box. So she has to be thinking: “Look at this guy – he’s got the guts to buy a self-improvement love book. He’s not only got courage, he’s got brains!”

Where you did screw up was when she asked you out for the very next night. It’s true that I tell you to accept the date if it’s incoming, but you should never accept a date when you’re on a date. Let’s say she asks you to a wedding in two weeks. You answer, “Can we talk Wednesday?” We want this girl coming at you – calling you in the early stages because it demonstrates high Interest Level. And that’s our main goal here -- gauging her Interest Level.

I know I tell you not to talk about the future, but in this case we want the girl to call you. If she says, on the spot, “Let’s set the date now,” then she’s closing you, which indicates high Interest Level. But what you’re doing is testing her, studying her, you’re finding out exactly where she’s coming from in terms of her Interest Level.

So again, even though it was incoming, never take a date on a date. Tell her you’ll talk later. Or even better, hand her their favorite line out of the Encyclopedia of Womanese: “Let me check my schedule first. It’s at work.”

Here’s the good part. You’ve only been in this girl’s presence twice. Everything looks great, and by the third date she knows whether you’re going to be around for a while. And so far this girl’s doing everything right. The only red flag is that there are so many nuts walking the streets. I just hope you two didn’t hook up at four in the morning in Compton!

Sonny, you’re lucky Yancy’s Interest Level was in the nineties when she spotted you loitering on the pavement. But you have to go six more dates. You have to make it to nine or 10 dates. So let her contact you by text message. If she doesn’t, you know what to do. Give it some time, then call her and ask her out for date number four.

The only thing you shouldn’t have done was accepted the third date.

You’ve got to learn to pace yourself. The biggest problem men have in relationships is RUSHING IN.

Remember, guys: you have to spoon-feed yourself; otherwise, she’ll get bored.

Did Nick Notice Changes in Jessica before She Dumped Him?

Hey Doc,

My wife of five years, Cassia, and I recently separated, with plans for a divorce. We have had our ups and downs, mainly due to financial problems with neither of us budgeting well. We also have a two-year-old daughter.

About six months ago, I noticed something different about Cassia. She changed her clothing (more sexy), eye color (contacts), and hairstyle (again, more sexy). I thought nothing of it at first, but there was more distance between us. She wanted to go clubbing with her new female friend from work every weekend instead of being at home. Then I discovered text messages that I found out later were between her and an ex-boyfriend. She said they were just friends, but when I mentioned the messages she reacted very angrily. She lied three different times about who this “other man” was, and now says she made it all up to make me angry.

Now she says that when we met she thought she was marriage material, but she wasn’t in reality. She accused me of tricking her into marriage even though at the time I felt that she (along with her mother) pressured me. She says now that her true personality is one that only wants to date different guys. She also says she’s sorry she had to get married and have a child to realize this.

Cassia moved out two weeks ago and I’ve not called her since. She has called me three or four times to “chat.” One of those calls was at two in the morning. She said she was upset I hadn’t called to “check on her.” I said I didn’t think it was necessary because we agreed it was over between us. I think she gets frustrated because I act indifferent when she calls. She also asks if I’m seeing anyone and drills me about my personal life. I think she’s shocked because I have not come pleading or begging for her to come back. It may just be her ego making her call when she doesn’t hear from me. I have not once even asked about the other man, if there is one.

Doc, am I being too indifferent to Cassia, even though we have a daughter together? I know the fact that we have a child changes things because we have to speak to each other about her. Also, should I give the two of us another try in the future?

Shel - who’s tempted to give it another go

Hi Shel,

I hate to break this to you, but your impending divorce isn’t completely on account of financial ineptitude. But you and Cassia are the typical Americans. You’re the folks who don’t save anything, you’re deep into credit card debt to the tune of 18 to 25 grand, and you have to figure out a way to stay in love with each other. But when there’s no food on the table, Interest Level goes down. To you Psych majors, you have to very careful with your money.

At first, the vast majority of guys think nothing of the changes their women make right under their noses. If they pick up anything at all, most of them think: “Oh, great -- she’s falling back in love with me!” Here she’s undergoing a complete makeover from Plain Jane to Jessica Alba, and it doesn’t even make them blink. Like my cousin Doctor Freud once said, “You know what’s great about men? They’re so observant!”

Now just imagine…all kinds of guys are dancing slow with Cassia, rubbing their bodies up against her, breathing and sweating all over her -- and she wants to keep boogeying with them! To boot, she’s text-messaging with her ex. In other words, she’s out partying with the football team, plus she’s giving false hope to her last boyfriend! Like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “Hey, this girl really loves you, I can tell.”

Shel, when Cassia said her ex was just a friend, notice she didn’t say “male” friend. She happened to leave that word conveniently out. In other words, she told you three lies, and then she tried to sell you on the fairytale that it was all on purpose just to make you angry. But why did she want to make you angry? You should have asked her that question. But we already know why she wanted to tick you off. Because then it would be easier for her to leave – but in this case it looks like she never loved you in the first place.

When Cassia said she wasn’t marriage material, do you know what that meant? Like I say in the Dating Dictionary, 25% of all women who get married do it with an Interest Level of only 40%-49%. And now you two are blaming each other for the fix you’re in. Isn’t it funny when you go to court how you hear two sides of the same story and one side sounds nothing like the other? This is the same thing. What a mess, dude. I hope you’re reading my book every night.

When Cassia revealed her “true” personality to you, you should have asked her how many dates with men she needed per night. When she told you she was sorry about having to have a child to arrive at her realization, it wasn’t even Womanese anymore. It was way beyond Woman Talk. She was into a different territory altogether. She must really dig you, Shel.

Let me ask you this question: why do you pick up the phone at two in the morning when Cassia calls? Why don’t you let her babble to the answering machine? That’s what they’re for, don’t forget. Let her chatter away there. Then erase the message the next morning -- don’t even listen to it. Haven’t you heard enough from this prize already?

But then I can understand why Cassia’s upset, pal. Why should you be miffed that she’s seeing the ex behind your back and doing full body rubs at the local disco with all those lounge lizards? Heck, you should be calling her up and pleading with her to see you. I can’t believe how selfish you are!

But seriously, you should tell your wife how consumed you are with your wonderful, fantastic life when she tries to get in touch. “I’m really tied up, honey. I’m having a little party over here. So get back to me later, okay?” That’s what you tell her.

What makes you beautiful, Shel, is that you are acting indifferent to Cassia. Five years in, and you don’t call her. You know how many guys wouldn’t have the Self-Control to do that? Like my cousin General Love says, “Soldier, you deserve the Medal of Honor!”

When Cassia demands details about your personal life, tell her “They’re holding a Playmate shoot in the bathroom right now. In fact, Hef’s coming over to introduce himself.”

You hit it right on the head, buddy -- women simply can’t believe that they can dump a man and he’s actually surviving. Here she blows the guy off, his heart is broken, he’s got this terrible emptiness engulfing his stomach, he can’t eat, he’s losing weight, and he’s fighting with his boss, all over this 105-pound girl. But not you. Good for you, Shel.

And it’s great that you’re not talking about the other guys. Yes, it is just Cassia’s ego that’s bruised by your refusal to cave in and turn into a basket case when she tramples on you. When any other woman’s Interest Level drops from 51% to 49%, you’re supposed to beg. And that abject whimpering and whining will drive her Interest Level from 49% to 40%. Then, when she hooks up with the latest new guy, it will drop further, to 39%, and you’re out. That’s the way it works. In your case, Cassia moved out.

But Shel, you’re different. You’re doing everything right. You’re not giving Cassia the satisfaction and you’re keeping your dignity intact. When you’re around her with your daughter, be very, very affectionate toward your wife. Then grab the kid and head to Disneyland.

You’ll have to remain cordial with Cassia because of your child, but do it expeditiously. Talking about the kid is okay, but other than that, you’re getting off the phone. When she says she wants to talk about something else, tell her “Babe, you got 30 seconds. I’m a real busy man.” Like my cousin Fast Eddie Love says, “Let her walk around wondering what you’re so busy with.”

But after all the torture you suffered at the hands of this wench, you’re thinking of getting back together with her. Shel, your wife never dug you from the beginning, so there’s nothing to go back to.

Remember, guys: make sure she’s deeply in love with you when you marry her.

How Does Hef keep Them from Coming on too Heavy?

Hey Doc,

First of all, thank you for all the great advice! I recently purchased your Dating Dictionary. “The System” has helped me more than I could even have hoped. But I hope you can help me more now.

I’ve been following your guidelines strictly with the girls I date. Their Interest Levels are above 50% or higher. But whenever I’ve succeeded in getting past the first three dates, something happens. After about two months of dating them, they start saying “I love you,” or “I feel like I’ve known you forever.”

Which might sound great, but how can someone “love” you after just two months of knowing you? And the worst thing is that they expect me to say, “I love you” in return, or to become further committed to them. At this level, I’ve already asked them not to date anyone else (they all agreed). But to me, that’s entirely different from what they expect: they e-mail or text- message me several times a day (expecting a response for every single message, of course), expect me to call them every single day, etc. I don’t acquiesce to their demands, however.

I’ve told all these girls the same thing, which is that a two-month “love” is still too fragile for me to blindly dive into something deeper, and that I’m not comfortable with all this smothering from them, either. By the way, I never let these discussions get heated up (I keep it light and funny).

The result? They have accused of me of being “emotionally unavailable.” They cry and try to convince me to say the “L” word. They accuse of me of being unfair. Finally, they start “advising” me: with the next girl in my life I shouldn’t come on “strong and heavy” at first, only to take it away from them after a few weeks. Finally, tired of all the drama, I break up with them. Or they break up (angry and hurt, naturally – or so they claim) with me.

Doc, I don’t think I’m emotionally unavailable. I try to see my girl once a week, show her through my actions that I care and that I’m having a great time with her. So what am I doing wrong? Or am I under some curse and just meeting emotionally unhealthy women? I don’t know if it matters, but I’m a foreigner (I moved to the U.S. three years ago) and each one of these girls has been the all-American blonde. And they’ve been single (which to me should translate into “very little baggage”). They’ve been all kinds of women, too, from teachers to doctors. Their ages are 20s to early 30s (I’m 32).

I would like to continue dating a girl longer than two to three months, without her becoming too demanding or smothering me. Is that possible?

Jiri - who’s baffled by American girls

Hi Jiri,

I want to thank you very much for investing in your future. You arrived at the realization that when it comes to love, it’s a jungle out there and you need all the coaching you can get. And of course that’s where I come in.

Pal, these girls are leaning heavy on you because they’re falling in love with you. So you’re looking at a positive development as a negative. As I’ve told you guys so many times, my techniques make you dangerous. Give me nine or 10 dates, two or three months, and you see the results, the numbers are there. Jiri, you got this strong response from women because you did almost everything right.

You hit it right on the head that a woman can’t really love you after so short a time. Like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “She’s in the ‘heat’ stage. Give her a little more time.” And in the heat stage she’s saying to you that as long as you keep doing everything right from here on out, she’ll stay with you for the rest of your life.

So when she starts hinting that the two of you were husband and wife in a previous incarnation, tell her: “The reason I dropped my last three girlfriends is because they pressured me, and I think that true love takes a long time to develop. I’m real happy that we both like each other so much, but we only have two and a half months in. We have at least another 10 months to go. And as far as the ‘I love you’s’ go, let’s go down to the pet shop and we’ll get you one of those talking parrots.”

So, Jiri, why in the world are you asking these girls not to date anyone else? Like my cousin Rabbi Love says, “My son, why are you wasting time selling her when she’s already sold?” They should be telling you that they don’t want to date anyone else. So why are you giving them orders? Why ask a babe with 95% Interest Level to be faithful? Like Doctor Freud would say, “It’s repetitive redundancy!”

When she starts with the text messages and phone calls, just tell her “Honey, it’s nice to hear from you, but save it for our next date.” And don’t cave in to her desire to respond. You might not be acquiescing to their demands, dude, but you’re taking this way too much to heart. To you Psych majors, never take women personally.

And why are you talking heavy with these girls at all? Debating with them over why you can’t plunge into a deep pool of love with them is way, way too much. Like my cousin Fast Eddie Love says, “Just keep your mouth shut and go out with as many of them as you can!” Let them blab their guts out. You don’t have to come back with anything. Just sit there and smile, and when they’re done yakking, give them a kiss. It always works, I guarantee it.

But you’re still not comfortable with all the smothering. You know what my cousin Brother Love down in Watts says, don’t you? “Yo, dog, you better get used to it!” Because you’re using Challenge. THIS IS WHAT CHALLENGE DOES TO WOMEN. This is the whole idea of being a Challenge. Again, you Psych majors, we want these girls blabbering on like this, telling you how much they love you even though they hardly know you.

You might think you’re keeping it light and funny, man, but you’re not. You’re contradicting yourself. Entering into protracted debates about love and binding commitments on any serious level is not light and it’s not funny.

When these girls accuse you of being emotionally unavailable, what you’re really hearing is a manifestation of low Self-Esteem on their part. To you shrinks out there, excuse me for stealing your podium for a moment, but a clinically sane, emotionally balanced woman would just let the whole thing ride. She’d say to herself, “This guy’s a cool customer. It’s very attractive. I’m totally impressed.” But a woman with low Self-Esteem? Uh-uh. She’ll freak out. She hates Challenge and loves Control – of you.

When a girl tries to get you to say the “L” word, ask her if you can say it just once a week. Tell her you want to take care of next month’s quota right now. What do you mean, she’ll ask, and you answer: “I love you I love you I love you I love you! There, I’m all caught up -- now let’s have some fun!”

Jiri, you didn’t take anything away from these ladies. You were just being a Challenge. You were consistent. Their lectures and rants are just more Womanese.

Don’t get rattled, my friend. You should be having fun with all this stuff, kidding and laughing about it with your girlfriends. You should be talking to them like Owen Wilson or Jim Carrey would – in a non-stop comedy routine. Parry their desperation like a master boxer. And if you can’t stop her from going completely nuts, tell her: “Honey, listen, you’re going too fast for me too soon. You gotta slow it down. But we had a good run. Goodbye.”

You’re not doing anything wrong. You’re doing everything right. You’re just going out with psychos, Beautiful Women with a lot of little devils between their ears. Welcome to the wonderful world of dating. The fact that you’re foreign has nothing to do with any of this. You’re of the male gender, that’s all that counts.

Sure, you would think that the fact that they’re single would mean they have little or no baggage. Except for one little problem -- you know nothing about their childhoods! You’re sane and they’re not. And as far as their occupations go, like my cousin General Love puts it, “Just because a woman can sew a guy’s arm back on his body, it doesn’t mean she’s good for the long haul!”

So don’t sweat it, Jiri. You’ll date a girl for longer than two or three months. You just haven’t found her yet. You have to learn to relax and enjoy the ones you’re with. The women you’re dealing with now will teach you a lot about which ones to avoid. If they get too demanding, take a walk. “Baby, you’re smothering me. Do me a favor – call me in 60 days.” That’s what you say.

Remember, guys: there are nut-cases in every country, not just America.

How Does Ralph Fiennes Handle Mixed Signals?

Hey Doc,

I’ve read your columns for some time now and would like to thank you for your astute advice on handling women. Even though I try to practice “The “System,” I acknowledge that I still need improvement. The following scenario is a good example of this.

While on a flight a few weeks back, I sat next to an attractive girl named Brianna. Before we parted ways, I asked for her phone number and waited seven days to call her. I called her on a Monday and told her that I wanted to take her out for drinks that Thursday and she agreed.

On Wednesday she committed the cardinal sin of dating: she broke the date using the excuse that her “friend” was in town. She then counter-offered, but weakly, by asking if I wanted to go out with her and her “friends.” I didn’t take the bait, but I still blundered by asking her to take time away from her friends on Sunday so I could take her out for lunch. She said that she would call back.

Realizing the serious mistake I made, I called her soon afterwards and explained that I forgot that I’d made plans for Sunday and was busy the entire weekend. Thursday was my only available day. I could then hear her hesitating for a moment, and then she said “We should reschedule,” but she didn’t give a specific day. I didn’t respond to her verbally but in my mind I was thinking “Yeah, right.”

Over the next few days, I told myself I shouldn’t call this girl because she wasn’t interested in me. The words that kept haunting me, though, were “We should reschedule.” A little less than two weeks later, I decided to give it one last try. After calling two times and getting her answering machine, I left a short message giving the day and time I wanted to pick her up for dinner, my phone number, and nothing else. After two days without a reply, I promptly erased her number, expecting to never see her again. To my surprise, she called back and apologized for not calling sooner. She said she’d been feeling ill but was better now and would like to go out to dinner with me.

We went out and had a good time. I kept the conversation light, my eyes on hers, and made her laugh. At the end of the evening, I walked her to her place and stopped a few feet from the entrance like a gentleman. I decided not to kiss her that night, but now realize that I should have done so to gauge her true Interest Level.

At this point I’m unsure of what to do. Brianna is pretty, with a very upbeat and warm personality. I am interested in seeing her again, but I don’t know if I should pursue her. I think that her actions raise red flags and green flags at the same time. What do you think, Doc? Do you think she’s given me mixed signals? If not, then how should I pursue this girl?

Brandon - who doesn’t know if he’s coming or going

Hi Brandon,

Thank you for having the confidence to ask your question. Most guys don’t have the guts to ask a question like yours, and it shows you’re open to a new experience and widening your horizons in the area of how women’s minds work when it comes to romantic relationships.

It’s great that you waited seven days to call Brianna. You were right on schedule. But let me ask you a question: if this girl had high Interest Level in you, would she ever have broken that first date? Then, Brandon, ask yourself this question: is there one guy in the world she wouldn’t have done that to? George Clooney, maybe? Or Orlando Bloom? The answer to that question is what the male ego can’t handle.

Now let me make sure I understand you right. Brianna tells you she’s breaking your date, and what do you do? Like my Uncle Jethro Love says, “You hand her a new whip so she can beat you some more!” You know to never do group dates, but you actually asked her out on top of a broken date? You’re not supposed to ask her out EVER AGAIN after a babe pulls that on you, and guy, you couldn’t wait!

That said, at least you’re on the right path with “The System.” Remember to place it by your bed, and read it every night for 10 minutes for the rest of your life. Any less than that, and you’re going to be making more boo-boos.

Then Brianna tells you, “I’ll call you back.” And you believed her. Oh, Lord, Brandon. There isn’t a woman on the planet who hasn’t trotted out that whopper at one time or another. Like my oddsmaker pal in Vegas says, “I’ll give you million to one it ain’t gonna happen!”

After you insisted on humiliating yourself and calling her again, she “hesitated.” That’s a very telling word. Do women who would take a bullet for the husbands they’re madly in love with ever hesitate? When a female prison guard springs some bad-ass dude who sweet-talked her, does she hesitate slipping him a weapon?

What you should have asked Brianna was “So what’s a good day for you?” To you Psych majors, then she’s got no wiggle room. You would have heard her go “duh…uh…uh…uh…uh….” Because you staggered her, just like Floyd Mayweather with a left hook. But you’ll get craftier the more you study my book.

Brandon, you don’t argue with yourself over whether or not to call this girl. You throw her number away -- period. When she said, “we should reschedule,” she’s just working your weak, deprived ego. Like my cousin Fast Eddie Love says, “She does it to all the guys she toys with.”

“We should reschedule” is just a generality. Girls with low Interest Level toss out generalities that don’t mean anything. Girls with high Interest Level get specific: “No, but I can make it Sunday at six!”

So you wanted to give it one last try, huh? Let me ask you another question: how many lottery tickets did you buy last week? You called her again and left a message? What did I tell you guys about phones? You fellas just don’t get it. You want to rush in and make it worse by begging. By getting on your knees and crawling like a pathetic worm.

All this girl has to do is pick up the phone and she’s got you. But she can’t do it. Why? Because her Interest Level is below the Mason-Dixon Line. So stop trying to think up excuses for her and quit trying to help her, for Pete’s sake. Look at it this way. Let’s say the girl’s Interest Level is 55% before you dial her digits. By actually calling her you just pushed it down to 49%!

Brandon, have you noticed that every time you ask this girl out, there’s some kind of catastrophe? First there’s a friend coming in from the East. The next time you called she couldn’t go out because when she heard your voice she wanted to throw up. (That’s how come she was ill.) When are you going to take the hint?

When Brianna finally consented to go out with you, how many times did she touch your arm? Big, big mistake, not trying to kiss her. When you don’t know a babe’s Interest Level, you have to go for it. You have to push the issue. Like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “You want her to turn her head so you don’t have to waste your time on her anymore.”

But with everything that’s happened so far, you’re not talking about her Interest Level. What you want to know is this: what’s her Interest Level based on her actions?

Here’s what I think of your situation. Brianna’s giving you mixed signals because she has low Interest Level. Wait for her to call you and ask you out. Meanwhile, hustle other women. Her Interest Level is around 40%. You’re just fill-in material, Brandon. She’s thinking to herself, “Oh! Thursday’s open….Let me call that stooge I can break dates with – he doesn’t mind!”

Like my cousin General Love says, “That’s the way the enemy thinks – and that’s when she’s in a sweet, caring mood!”

Remember, guys: when they screw around with your head, don’t rationalize, please.

Does Leonardo DiCaprio ever have Trouble Knowing when to go for the Kiss?

Hey Doc,

I’m 18 years old and completely in love with Jenna. She’s gorgeous and in my senior high school class and we’ve been talking for more than a month now. You might find this hard to believe, but I’ve had dates with lots of girls before. Jenna’s only had one boyfriend before me. I know him and he’s a complete klutz.

A few days ago I invited Jenna to go to a movie that she wanted to see. Since we had some schedule confusion, she surprisingly called me to arrange the date and everything was set.

After the movie was over, we ended up talking for a half-hour until her mother called Jenna’s cell phone and said she was waiting for her in the parking lot. At that point, I gave her a gift of a CD of her favorite band that she mentioned she wanted. She was ecstatic about my thoughtfulness and gave me a huge hug.

Doc, at that moment I knew that I should kiss her, but I didn’t because everything happened so fast. I knew that I’d missed an opportunity, and I’ve felt frustrated about it ever since.

Jenna and I now have a date to go to a concert she wants to attend. I’m afraid the same thing is going to happen again – the moment to kiss her will come and go and again I won’t have done anything. The problem is that I don't know when I should give her a first kiss. She is very hard to catch, Doc. I believe that Jenna likes me, but sometimes I’m not really sure. Does that make sense?

What do you think, Doc? I've never tried to kiss a hard-to-catch girl before. The other girls I went out with were easy to read, but not this one.

I hope you can help me because I’m very interested in this girl, and I’m sure I’m not the only guy in a similar situation.

Ronde - who’s a little mixed-up

Hi Ronde,

It’s just fabulous that you’re completely in love with Jenna. But never lose sight of the fact that there’s something much more important going on here. Like my cousin Fast Eddie Love says, “What are her feelings towards you, Junior?” Guys, it’s her Interest Level that counts – not yours.

Hey, I believe you’ve had dates with lots of girls, Ronde. But when you looked at them, they sort of just blended into the crowd. Jenna – a double for Kate Beckinsale -- looks like she materialized straight off the cover of Elle magazine. And that means you have to be extra careful and really know what you’re doing or you’ll get eaten alive. Remember, no matter how sweet and innocent she appears, you’re still dealing with the MOST DANGEROUS CREATURE ON THE FACE OF THE PLANET. Leopards, jaguars, cheetahs and tigers are beautiful to look at too.

Sure, Jenna’s only had one boyfriend in her life – and she’s rejected 2,000 others who’ve been coming on to her since she was 13! And by the way, Ronde, why would you want someone who digs klutzes?

When Jenna called you to set up your date after all that schedule conflict and confusion, she was doing you a big favor. To you Psych majors, she cleaned up your mess. But once her Mommy called her on her cell phone, you should have taken Jenna straight home. Remember, you don’t want to tick off her folks since you’re both still in high school.

Now let me get this straight. You presented Jenna with a gift on your very first date? Jeez, pal, why didn’t you just the buy her the engagement ring while you were shopping? I mean, why waste time?

Now let’s get on to what’s really bugging you. Ronde, you’re wrong thinking that you have to kiss Jenna the minute you get within three feet of her. In fact, you shouldn’t have kissed her. You’re putting way too heavy a trip on yourself.

Listen up: you’re not going to kiss this girl at all. This girl’s going to kiss you (assuming you stop making blunders!).

So don’t feel frustrated, guy. Believe it or not, you did the right thing by not going for it. See, everybody tries to kiss this girl. You’ll just be one of a whole flock of turkeys if you force the issue. But you’re going to stand out because you’re different from the rest of her fans and worshippers.

So now you two are going to a concert. Hm…I detect a pattern here. Jenna picks the concerts…she picks the movies…and she picks the times you get together. What do you ever get to pick? As my cousin General Love once said, “Is she going to tell you when you can talk after you get married?” Or as Doctor Freud put it, “Sonny, are you trying to do a perfect impersonation of Wimpus Americanus?”

Nevertheless, I still don’t want you to do anything when it comes to kissing. You’re doing just fine as you are. You’ll kiss this girl only after she begs you to kiss her.

Jenna’s not hard to catch, dude. She’s coming right at you, in case you haven’t noticed. She cleans up your messes and you’re going out on a second date. So just keep smiling and showing her your teeth and your shiny shoes. And don’t forget to show her a little Challenge while you’re at it. You don’t want to be a doormat even before you say, “I do.”

My friend, you’re not really sure Jenna digs you only because she’s so gorgeous and you don’t have any experience with a real woman. So of course it makes sense that you’re confused about whether or not she likes you -- especially considering the source!

But seriously, it’s great that she’s not so easy to read. Like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “It means she hasn’t been out with the rugby team.”

Make no mistake, though -- every guy at school loves this girl. Even the tenth-graders love her. Like the old cowboy saying goes, “They say she’s old, but she’s a knockout!”

But always remember that guys do the picking, but women do the choosing.

Remember, guys: you have to conserve yourself and not rush in; otherwise you’re going to lose her to another guy.

Does Justin Timberlake ever have Trouble with Her Roommate?

Hey Doc,

I’ve read your columns for a while, and just recently purchased your book.

Thanks to your techniques, I hooked Vanessa and we’ve been together for over a year now. We love each other, Doc, and for the most part the relationship has been fine. Vanessa is Beautiful, Self-Reliant, and has a good overall attitude. So far, so good.

Our biggest sticking point is her best friend and roommate. This girl is always whispering dirty little things to Vanessa and tries to break us up so that she can have my girl all to herself. My problem is that Vanessa stays friends with her. For instance, the roommate couldn’t pay her share of the rent once, so she moved in with her boyfriend, and then, when they broke up, she moved back, without ever paying for the month she missed. THE WORST PART IS VANESSA LET IT HAPPEN!

This is the sort of thing that happens all the time. Vanessa is just too soft a touch. Doc, I would love to neutralize this situation somehow without having to take out a contract. It seems like this issue will eventually come between Vanessa and me, and it keeps me feeling really insecure about our whole relationship.

One other thing. Sometimes Vanessa is very flakey with me. When she’s around, she shows 90% Interest Level in me, but when she’s not, it can be like pulling teeth trying to get her to hang out. Still, she calls me most of the time. This has been the pattern throughout our entire relationship.

Doc, what do you make of it? It’s possible that I am too available because whenever Vanessa calls I answer (but I keep the conversations short). Should I cut back on my availability? Will that set her straight? What do I have to do to get rid of the leech who’s sucking the blood out of my girl and get more power in this relationship?

Thanks, Bro!

Tiki - who feels like he’s fighting a war

Hi Tiki,

There’s really only one thing you can do when you have to deal with Vanessa’s roommate from hell. Go with the flow and defuse the situation with humor. What have I always told you guys? Keep it light, keep it funny. Like Doctor Freud once said, “Can you imagine Cary Grant getting bent out of shape over some babe’s ditzy friend?”

So let’s say the roommate hisses to Vanessa, “I don’t know why you like this guy. He’s not even that attractive.” You come back with this to your girl: “Hey, baby, when I look in the mirror I see the spitting image of Quasimodo – I don’t know what she’s talking about!”

Or if she whispers behind your back, “Vanessa, why do you even go out with Tiki? He’s never going anywhere in life,” you shoot back: “Are you kidding? I’m planning on collecting unemployment the rest of my life and sleeping under the freeway. If that’s not going places, I don’t know what is!”

The point is to let the nasty stuff roll off you like water off a duck’s back. Make a joke of it. If you give no resistance, the roommate has no target to fire at. It’s one of the oldest tricks in the world.

And for now, at least, you don’t have much choice, Tiki. Vanessa likes this gal-pal of hers. As the Reality Factor says, you have to come to grips with it instead of fighting it. She’s not going to get rid of her, no matter what you say. To boot, they live together. Like my cousin Fast Eddie Love puts it, “You gotta be slick to outwit them.”

Now, I just can’t believe that Vanessa’s roommate would skip on the rent. Impossible! I find it hard to accept that any woman would pull such a sleazy ruse! Why, it must be the first time in recorded history that a female used someone!

But of course you know why that happened -- because your girlfriend’s an easy touch. The good parts of Vanessa are that she’s sweet and naïve and a Giver. The bad part is that she can’t tell a good person from a user. But is that the worst thing in the world, Tiki? Better to have a woman with a good heart than…well, than someone like her roommate.

So, a soft touch is what you’re going to marry. Everything else about this girl is awesome, right? Can you learn to live with her one flaw if the rest of her is perfect and she’s Beautiful? That’s what you have to ask yourself. And that’s what “The System” is all about: finding out who the girl really is and whether or not you can put up with her.

But remember this. When Vanessa marries you, she’s not going to be living with the dreaded roommate anymore. If she wants to go out with her girlfriends, fine. If she wants to have the roommate over for a cup of tea and crumpets, go and have a beer with your buddies. Get out of the house for a couple of hours.

You’re going to have to work with this situation, that’s the point here, buddy. If Vanessa wants to keep this thief as a personal friend until she gets screwed over again, fine. Just don’t let the roommate take you out. Like my cousin General Love says, “Boys, never take a bullet indirectly.” And when Vanessa brings it up, tell her, “You know I really like this roommate of yours, honey. You should have another girlfriend like her.” Then walk around the block and bang your head against a brick wall. Just don’t do it in front of her, like Macho Boy would.

Tiki, if you wiped this infernal roommate off the face of the planet, you’d end up paying an even heavier price than you’re paying now. Like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “Your girlfriend would visit you three or four times in jail, then she’d run off with the prison guard. And if not him, then another jailbird when he gets out on parole.” You’re not going to hold onto Vanessa by blowing her roommate away, man. So taking out a contract is out of the question.

Your girl has been all over you for a year and she’s great. She just happens to have horrible taste in girlfriends. You’re going to learn to live with it or you’re going to have to walk. But like my cousin Rabbi Love once said, “When you find the next girl, you’ll have something else to kvetch about.”

If you’re pulling teeth to get Vanessa to hang out with you, then you’re begging, my friend. When she calls you up, let her ask you out. If she doesn’t ask you out within five minutes, tell her you’re busy and you’ll talk to her later. Then wait until she begs you to go out.

And if this babe calls you most of the time, Tiki, you’ve already got the battle almost won. Force her to call you ALL of the time by staying off the phone and not phoning her. That way her attention is always incoming, and her Interest Level will go up via CHALLENGE.

The way it is now, of course, you hop to whenever Vanessa calls. You’re like a paramedic -- on duty 24 hours a day. The only difference between you and them is that you’re on duty seven days a week, too. Paramedics get three days off.

So yes, cutting back on your availability will set Vanessa straight. And there’s one surefire way of claiming power in your relationship: by building up the roommate to your girlfriend. To you Psych majors, it’s called reverse psychology.

Remember, guys: there’s no such thing as a clean deal.

Does Colin Farrell ever have to Get Rid of Her Guy "Friends"?

Hey Doc,

I think your stuff is foolproof and provides a fascinating view into the constant chess game being played between the sexes.

Here’s my situation. I’m 20 and I think I’ve found my soulmate. I don’t fall in love easy, but I can honestly say I’m in love with my girlfriend of six months, Shakira. She’s also 20, is gorgeous, innocent, super-affectionate, and acts like one of the guys. I’ve been with many women and I’ve never been happier than I am with her. I am her first major beau. She’s confessed her love to me and talks a lot about marriage.

Now, being one of the guys is great. I love it that Shakira isn’t a girly-girl. But the vast majority of her friends are guys, and that’s the problem. I have major trust issues with women. However, I do trust Shakira because I’ve tested her many times by showing up unexpectedly when she’s out with these guy friends. But this group of guys drives me up the wall. I believe they are shady characters and I’ve told Shakira that they aren’t to be trusted. I remember hanging out with hot chicks who had boyfriends just to try and woo them away, and I know for a fact that at least two of these guy friends have asked Shakira out in the past before we started dating, another one tried to steal my girlfriend’s sister away from her husband, and the other friend is her ex, who I’ve already had words with because he made a very sorry attempt to try and get Shakira back while I was away at school. (She rebuffed him, by the way.)

Guys, unless they’re gay, don’t keep hot chicks around just to be friends. Since they’re shady, who knows what, given the opportunity, these guys might do?

Our relationship now seems to be teetering on this one issue. I want Shakira to dump all of these losers. She makes it an issue by saying, “You can’t tell me who I can and cannot hang out with.” She thinks I was too rough on her ex when I confronted him, so she tries to keep me and the guy friends apart as much as possible because she thinks I’m going to bully them, too.

Doc, I don’t know what to do. I’m frustrated because it looks like

this one issue could dissolve this otherwise great relationship. How should I handle these shady friends that probably secretly love Shakira?

Do I tell her to choose between them and me? Do I tell them politely to lay off? It seems however I try to work it out it causes a fight. I’d appreciate your expert insight.

Jermaine - who’s all out of ideas

Hi Jermaine,

You’re dead right about the relations between the sexes being a tricky chess game, because it involves strategies and tactics and maneuvering. And do you know why it’s like that? Because the Reality Factor says that romantic love is all about POWER -- or at least a big, big part of it is.

Jermaine, right off the bat you and Shakira have a problem. Both of you are only 20. And you know what I always say about 18- to 22-year-olds (especially the girls): you’re not grown up yet. But you will be. I just hope you’re staying a constant Challenge to this girl. Because like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “A Beautiful Woman who’s only 20 never has to wear make-up.” And like my other cousin Fast Eddie Love puts it, “A ‘10’ is always trouble.” You’ve got to be completely schooled in my techniques to have even a remote chance of survival.

That said, it’s great that Shakira confessed her love to you and that she brings up the subject of marriage -- as long as you keep in mind that she’s just a baby.

But wait a minute here, Jermaine. You’re only 20 and you’ve already had tons of women? Maybe you’re the first guy ever who doesn’t need the Dating Dictionary.

But I don’t believe that for a minute. Because by your own admission you have major trust issues with women, which means you weren’t all that successful with the ones who came before Shakira, either.

Now what do I always tell you guys? Keep it light, keep it funny, no heavy subjects, no negatives, no put-downs. Your girl has done everything right. She’s never given you a red flag. So what do you do? You get all uptight on account of your hang-ups. You decide to show her how shaky your confidence is. You demonstrate how insecure you are. Like my cousin Brother Love down in Watts says, “My friend, you still have trust issues.”

When you sneak around and check on Shakira, do you figure there’s any chance she’s thinking how weak you are for spying on her? Any chance her Interest Level drops a few points because she knows you’re not sure of yourself or her, even though the guy friends she hangs out with don’t have a chance with her?

Dog, you’re making a big, big mistake by fretting over these guys. Instead, you should be building them up! You should have told your girl, “I’m glad you’re hanging out with these boys. There’s no reason for me to be all-uptight about it. Honey, you wanna go out with a hundred guys, you go on and play with them! Be my guest! And have a good time!”

But you’re doing the exact opposite. You’re trying to control this babe. Let’s face it – you’re not going to be able keep her on a leash. As Doctor Freud once said, “It’s a delusion for a guy to think he’s ever going to tell a woman what to do.” That’s why when you’re dealing with a female, you’ve always got to be shrewd and take an oblique shot. You’ve got to attack from your flank position instead of the front line. Like my cousin General Love warns, “Never go straight at her, soldier. She’ll slaughter you!”

Naturally all kinds of guys are pressuring Shakira to go out – look at her, for God’s sake! She’s gorgeous! Why wouldn’t they ask her out? Your problem, Jermaine is that you’re so insecure. But since Shakira’s Interest Level is in the nineties, there’s no reason for you to be so unconfident. So what’s wrong with you? Are you sure you’ve read my materials?

You have to realize that guys are bird dogs, even your friends. To you Psych majors, they’re always going to try to steal your girl, especially when she looks like Beyonce. There are very few guys who’ll be loyal when it comes to your squeeze -- very, very few. They’ll always try and rip you off. But if Shakira has already told her ex to get lost, why are you telling him to get lost?

As I said earlier, your little girl is 20 and hasn’t completely grown up yet. So let these other dudes show their true colors over the long haul, and if they don’t behave themselves and she goes for it, then you have to realize she prefers guys who’ve done a couple years in Rikers Island over you. But not yet.

What should you do? Say, “Shakira -- you know, I was thinking about it, and I can’t tell you who to run around with. But if you want to see your guy pals, it’s fine with me. They’re not my cup of tea, but they’re good guys – you go ahead and hang out with them.”

And then keep your mouth shut and go talk to a shrink!

Shakira’s 200% right that you can’t tell her who to hang out with. And you were too rough on her ex; she was on target on that one too. With every single thing you’re doing, man, you’re lowering Interest Level. You should be out having a beer with your rivals (without having Shakira along) and being their pal. Remember what Michael Corleone said in The Godfather: “Keep your friends close, but your enemies closer.”

Sadly, Jermaine, this one issue will end up dissolving your beautiful relationship unless you get a grip. And it’s all your fault. Shakira’s a Beautiful Woman, she’s 20 years young, and I don’t care if it’s one guy or 50 guys, they’re always going to be hustling her because of her looks. You love her, right? Well, why wouldn’t they love her? Heck, I haven’t even met her and I love her!

But she’s got 95% Interest Level in you, and that’s the one weapon you have in your arsenal.

Don’t make her choose between you and them. Do nothing. Just put on a happy face and bite your tongue. And don’t order these characters to lay off – because they’re not going to do it. They’re not going to pay any attention to you at all! You’re at the bottom of the totem pole in this game.

Instead, go back to my book and learn to practice SELF-CONTROL, PATIENCE, and DISCIPLINE.

Remember, guys: unless it raises her Interest Level, she doesn’t want to hear it.

Does Jamie Foxx ever let Them Pay for Dinner?

Hey Doc,

I bought your book, have diligently read your columns and have completely digested your philosophy. While “The System” does expose many truths about relationships, I have several questions.

First, the one-week waiting policy. I tried that method, as well as my own “call-the-girl-whenever-I-feel-like-it” method and I have found no difference between the two. Recently I called a girl I’d just met and successfully set up a date with her for later that night. We got very romantic and I’m still seeing her. I understand how waiting a week can be “playing hard to get,” but it’s my philosophy not to stoop to their level. I try to be upfront about what I want without resorting to playing games and thus far have had no problems.

Second, I have to criticize your aversion to anything sexual. How can you give relationship advice while skirting the issue of sexuality? Sexuality is a very large part of the reason why I want a relationship and I don’t believe I’m alone on that point.

My final complaint is on the topic of paying for women’s meals and dates. This, to me, is the absolute worst thing a man can do! I don’t pay for a woman…EVER. I value my time spent with her, and if she doesn’t feel the same way, then she can go home. I should never have to pay to take a woman out. This is the age of equality, and there are no excuses for a man paying for anything. If a man pays for a woman’s time, it is begging. I believe that a woman should be interested in me and not a free dinner. I feel very strongly about this point, and I have never had a problem after explaining to a woman how I feel. Believe it or not, most women are actually impressed or turned on by my attitude.

I do not expect you to publish this letter, as it would be disastrous to your marketing/advertising efforts, but I would appreciate a reply. I used to recommend your philosophy to other frustrated guys, but I don’t anymore. If you can explain to me why I’m wrong, I assure you I will resume doing it.

Noah - who is beginning to see it differently

Hi Noah,

You say you’ve completely digested my philosophy. But let me ask you a question: are you sure you’ve completely memorized my book? Because I if you had, you wouldn’t have all these questions! Once you’ve committed “The System” to memory, you’ve got all the answers you’ll ever need when it comes to women. And they’re the right answers.

Now, pal, I’ve interviewed thousands of women over the years, and when I tell them the guy should wait a week to call, why is it 90% of them go ballistic? Because being faced with Challenge for a change makes them sit up and take notice. Challenge gets under their skin. Most guys – like you -- can’t control themselves and are all over a babe if she gives them the time of day.

And here’s something else. Don’t you see that you’re kowtowing to a girl by coming on heavy and jumping right on the phone to her 10 minutes after you meet? Like my Uncle Jethro Love says, “You got it backwards, cowboy!”

Hey, don’t get me wrong, Noah. I’m really happy you’re not having any problems with any of the babes you’re dating. But I’m really curious to know what kind of women they are. Like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “Hey, man, are you cruising websites for females in the federal prison system?”

Let’s move on to the topic of sexuality. Dude, I want to ask you another question. Does a married man whose wife’s Interest Level is 100% ever have to talk about or angst over the subject of sex? Does this guy ever have any problems in that area? Is sex an issue ever for him in his relationship? The answer is NO. Again, you’ve got the cart before the horse. Like my cousin Fast Eddie Love says, “Worry about whether she digs you, man. The other stuff will take care of itself.”

But something else is involved here. The Reality Factor says that women have sex with you when their Interest Level is 51% to 100%, but what most men don’t understand is that some women have sex with you when their Interest Level is only 40% to 49%. And that’s where the problems come in.

It’s a half-truth that paying for a woman’s dinner is the worst thing a man can do. If you do four to six dates with her and she doesn’t want to spring for dessert, then you can be sure you don’t have a Giver on your hands. So in that sense, I see your point. But not paying for a woman ever? You’re going out with women and you’re never going to pop for even a lousy cup of coffee? You’re seeing lots of women, right, Noah? Well, the ones you’re going out with must weigh at least 350 to 400 pounds, or you’re the spitting image of Brad Pitt. To you Psych majors, “This guy must be the drummer in the band!”

Saying that a woman can go home if she isn’t completely knocked out by merely basking in your presence is another half-truth. Because you have to be doing something on these dates besides walking around the block. If you go bowling, you have to rent the shoes, right? If you go to the zoo, you have pay admission to get in, don’t you?

Paying for a woman greases the relationship. In the mating dance, the male, at the beginning, goes for the bill. That’s the way it is. So you’re way off base here. I can’t imagine what the women you’re dating have going on between their ears. Maybe nothing?

Let’s face it -- not ever having to pay to take a woman out would be the ideal. But the Reality Factor says that the man opens his wallet. What’s more, buddy, it’s not begging to treat a woman. IT’S SHOWING MANNERS AND CLASS. I mean, can you imagine Cary Grant ever sticking her with the bill? Like my cousin Rabbi Love says, “Are you sure they’re not calling you tightwad behind your back?”

That said, it’s true that a lot of women are only interested in free meals. They’re called Gold-Diggers and Professional Daters. But if my techniques were completely burned into your brain cells, you’d be able to tell the difference between a girl you could buy dinner for and one you couldn’t.

So let me get this straight. You’re actually telling me you say “What’s your home phone number? And by the way, when we go out I don’t pay for anything -- but I’m dying to see you!” Is that really your approach? Smooth, my friend, smooth. No wonder you’re so popular! Can I ask you a question? Just how many tattoos do these girls have on their arms?

Noah, don’t you worry about my marketing/advertising efforts. I just sold four more books because of you.

Now you said something very interesting at the end of your letter – you referred to “other frustrated guys.” Which means that you’re frustrated, right? You just got through telling me that you get away with murder with all these honeys, which means that their Interest Level has to be 100%. So how is it you’re frustrated? As Doctor Freud once said, “Something’s not making sense here! You’ve even got me confused!”

Remember, guys: you can lead an ass to water, but you can’t make him drink.

Does Lindsay Lohan ever have to Ask Her Parents' Permission?

Hi Doc,

I’m a dedicated follower of “The System” but I’ve seemed to encounter a situation I just can’t read yet.

Bridget and I are both 22. I asked for her phone number and without hesitation she jotted both her home and cell phone numbers. I waited a week to call her and asked her out for a Wednesday.

Bridget admitted that her parents were a bit strict and that she’d have to run it by them first. She called me the following day and told me that her parents wouldn’t allow her to go out with me because they didn’t know me just yet. She counter-offered to hang out at her house instead. It was a bit uncomfortable to meet her parents on a first date, but I figured it was some sort of test to see if I was truly interested in her or not.

Things went well that night. Her parents and I got along amazingly great. They offered me dinner, and I accepted and was a gentleman throughout the night. I figured that after I “proved” myself, I would be able to take Bridget out on a second date.

I called five days later and asked Bridget out again, this time for a Thursday night. She accepted, but she said that she’d have to run my offer by her parents again. She called me the following day and said her parents still didn’t know me well enough and that they would prefer we hang out at their house again or with her friends. She then invited me to a concert on Sunday, where her friends would be.

Doc, I haven’t been able to get this girl out on a date alone yet, and so I can’t “interview” her. I’m pretty sure she has over 51% Interest Level in me, but it’s difficult to gauge her actions and ask questions when her mom and dad are hovering around or when her friends are present.

Should I stick with Bridget and hope she eventually gets “permission” to really go out? Or do you think she just wants to be friends?

Your wisdom would be greatly appreciated.

Henri - who’s never had to face anything like this before

Hi Henri,

When a girl jots down every number short of her Social Security for you, everything is just about perfect. So I’d say you were off to a darned good start with Bridget. I only wish you two were a little older. As it is, Bridget is on the outer age range of the “ditz” category, but maybe she’s a mature 22-year-old. We’ll find out.

Now, this babe is running stuff by her folks for one of two reasons. Because she has to, or because she doesn’t have to. And also because she has high Interest Level or because she doesn’t have high Interest Level. What we’re hoping for is that she comes from an ultra-conservative family, because it means she hasn’t dated most of the football or hockey team. So, if you’re patient, this restriction can be a big positive in disguise.

Bridget returned your call the very next day? Dude -- how many women actually do that? One in eight? Awesome! Like my Brother Love down in Watts says, “We got Interest Level here, baby! Hallelujah!” When she told you her parents didn’t know you yet, you should have asked, like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love would, “Hey -- can I buy ’em off?”

But when she came up with the counteroffer to hang out at her house, she was helping you out. What have I told you guys again and again? When a girl likes you, she helps you out. So she does appear to have high Interest Level. And it does seem legitimate that her parents are ultra-conservative. This is great -- maybe you’ve got what we call a sleeper here.

It’s uncomfortable anytime you meet strangers, but don’t let having to deal with Bridget’s folks rattle you. When you memorize my book, nothing will ever bother you again when it comes to women. You’ll be super-confident because you’ll know how to handle any situation you’re ever confronted with. So what you do is shine your shoes and brush your teeth and flash Bridget’s folks a great, big smile. Because like my cousin the Reverend Love says, “You gotta get the parents out of the way if you’re going to get to Angel!”

Sure you’re facing a test, pal, but it’s not Bridget’s -- it’s her parents’! So you’ve only got part of it right. And guy, look at it this way -- they didn’t throw you out, so you’ve passed the test so far. What’s more, they asked you to break bread with them. That’s a big deal to an ultra-conservative family.

But don’t forget, hanging around her house wasn’t a date. A date is when you and Bridget are alone and nobody’s around trying to block your relationship. So you’ve gotten way ahead of yourself, like most guys do. As my Uncle Jethro Love says, “Until all the eggs are broken, you can’t tell how many chickies you got!”

The second time around you should have known you were going to have to pass the “Parents Test” again. But as long as Bridget returns your phone call, that’s all that counts.

So now you’re stuck with her friends. Ideally, the rule is that we don’t want any of those around. But we still haven’t removed the parents yet as blockers. But at least when you go out with Bridget’s friends you’re out of their sight. You’re out in a public place with people who aren’t her immediate family. Maybe after two or three of these “friends” dates, you’ll get an “alone” date. Look at it this way – you’re on the right track and you’re getting there.

Buddy, when you say you haven’t taken Bridget out alone yet, you act like you’ve been chasing her for a year and a half. You’re just getting warmed up here, man! You’ll interview her down the road. The point is, she’s giving you time. She’s asking you out. She’s making counter-offers. Hello, Mister Interest Level!

So you’ll take care of getting to know Bridget in depth when her mom and dad finally say “Okay, you can go out alone with Henri now.” It doesn’t matter how long this process takes. And like my cousin Fast Eddie Love says, “You’re going to be seeing girls on the side anyway, right, amigo?”

Of course you should stick with Bridget. And no, she doesn’t want to be just friends. This girl has Interest Level. But your problem is this: like most guys out there, you want to rush and pressure. To you Psych majors, you’ve got to learn to SLOW IT DOWN.

Remember, guys: until the blockers are blocked, there’s no moving forward.

Did Ben and Jen Argue before They got Hitched?

Hey Doc,

Sofia and I have been engaged since this past August and dated for almost two and a half years before that. I’m 32 and she’s 31. She was always a Flexible Giver, and I had more fun with her than with any other woman. I also treated her right, just like you said to in your books.

After about a year and a half, Sofia was ready for marriage. I eventually proposed to her on a fun trip to Cape Cod, and we were both excited by it. We also decided we could move in together since we were engaged. This is where things got tough.

Since I was living in an apartment and Sofia had just bought a condo, it made sense for me to move in with her. The problem is that I had to fight to hang onto my own stuff and carve out some space for myself. Sofia was very settled, and I pointed out that it seemed more important for her to keep HER stuff the way she wanted it rather than making me feel welcome. From that point we’ve been in an argumentative rut. Sofia has lived alone for six years while I’ve always had a roommate. To boot, her stuff is thrown everywhere in the condo. I’m kind of an organizational freak, so this arrangement stresses me.

Things finally came to a head a few weeks ago when we went shopping at the mall. We were walking along when all of a sudden my ex-girlfriend’s sister walked up and said hi. I was kind of shocked to see her because I cut off all communication off with my ex (who does live nearby) four years ago.

Afterwards, Sofia got really mad at me for not introducing her as my fiancé. I tried to explain that I was caught off guard and wasn’t thinking straight. I apologized, but I didn’t think it was that big a deal. Another big argument.

The next morning Sofia said she felt foolish and apologized profusely. But through all of this Doc, my excitement to get married is greatly diminishing. Is this part of living together that I’d have to deal with anyway? (Many friends tell me it is.) Or do we have a real problem? I know you say a few arguments a year is okay, but we’re having too many. It really bothers me that I’m not all pumped up for marriage anymore.

I still love Sofia and am willing to work on our problems. She can tell I’m more and more “out of it” lately and it makes her sad because she thinks we’re on the rocks. I’m trying to be supportive of her, but I’m just numb from it all. I’d love some advice.

Val - who’s not even married yet but already weary

Hi Val,

Your first big mistake was asking Sofia to marry you. You may own my book, but it’s obvious you haven’t actually read it. Because if you did, you’d know that in “The System” the woman always asks the man to get married. You got things all backwards, and that’s why you’re in trouble. You’ve got to be more of a Challenge. Guys, Challenge matters even when it comes to kissing.

Let me give you an example. The singer Pink met motocross racer Carey Hart at the 2001 X Games in Las Vegas and proposed to him last summer. This is what’s supposed to happen when her Interest Level is through the roof. And when it does happen that way, the guy and the girl are going to argue a lot less down the road. (Pink and Carey Hart recently tied the knot in Costa Rica, by the way.)

Now this is what I don’t get, Val. I always tell you guys to look at a woman’s Attitude, right? So you date Sofia for two and a half years, and every time you go to her house it looks like a pigsty. You notice it because you’re like Jerry Seinfeld – a “cootie freak.” Then all of a sudden you move in with her without setting the ground rules first.

What were you thinking, pal? Didn’t you sit down with your squeeze and establish the boundaries first? What you should have done was hashed out with Sofia exactly how you were going to carve up the territory. What’s going to be your area? What’s going to be her area? Who can go where and why? Which furniture are we going to keep? All that stuff should have been worked out beforehand. But like most men, instead of controlling yourself, you rushed in like Dubya invading Bagdad.

If you’d have memorized my material, buddy, you would have had the Doc Love edge – the edge that comes from knowing the Dating Dictionary inside out -- when you ran into your ex’s sister. And when you have that edge, you never get rattled, because you’re ready for anything. In other words you’re like a paramedic – you’re on duty 24 hours a day. And when that call comes in, you’re able to deal effectively with whatever emergency awaits you. To you Psych majors, when you’re with your girl, there are always going to be twists and turns in the road, and something tricky is always going to come up. And that’s your chance to dance, show her how cool you are under pressure.

Why didn’t you think you might run into your ex or her family, Val? You’re in the same town, so you were probably going to bump into someone eventually. As the Blackfoot proverb goes, “It’s called the geography of the mall!”

If you knew my principles, you would have realized right off what Sofia’s problem with that scenario was: Kitty Kats Kompete. How else would you expect her to react when faced with even a whiff of a potential rival? And when your girl ran into your ex’s sister, you were supposed to be LOYAL. LOYALTY dictates that you have to proudly announce that Sofia is your fiancé. You had to make it perfectly clear where the boundaries were. Going tongue-tied wasn’t exactly taking a strong stand, buddy. But then again, you didn’t memorize my materials, did you?

Nevertheless, Sofia apologized profusely anyway. Whoa! This is a big, big deal! A woman said she was sorry for throwing a hissy fit? Contact the Guinness Book of Records – right now!

But seriously, Val, your problems all stem from the fact that you didn’t handle this relationship the right way from the beginning. Like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “When it comes to tying the knot, the babe should always do the begging, otherwise you ain’t nothin’ but a chump.”

Second, you should have waited a lot longer to live in sin. Hey, man, you didn’t really know the girl that well. You’re telling me in one breath that she’s a Flexible Giver, and in the next that she’s fighting over territorial rights with the guy she wants to spend the rest of her life with? She should be saying “Honey, with you, I’d live in a tent!” Or as my other cousin Fast Eddie Love would put it, “I’d hate to see how she acts if she didn’t like you!”

But in Sofia’s defense, you’re turning her off. You see her ex’s sister and you’re dumbstruck. Your behavior couldn’t have gone over well in Sofia’s eyes. Heck, when you run into your actual ex someday, you’ll probably pass out. So if you turn a woman off, how can she have high Interest Level in you?

What I would do if I were you is go and find an apartment and continue to date Sofia. In other words, you have to start all over again. When you move out, she’ll make space for your stuff the next time, I guarantee it. But you have to get out from under her nose and boost her Interest Level. Because right now it’s not anywhere near the nineties.

Remember, guys: the key to women is patience.

Did Angelina Wait Until Brad was Divorced?

Hey Doc,

I am in desperate need of advice, and I was hoping you could help me.

I am 38 years old and a police captain. A little over a year ago I started having an affair with the city clerk, who is 37. We were both married at the time. I know it was wrong, but it happened anyway. I wasn’t happy at all with my marriage. For a long time there was nothing between my wife and me, and she told me she wasn’t happy either. Things between the city clerk, who I’ll call Meg, and me, took off like a whirlwind. I fell in love with her, and she tells me she loves me too. She claims her husband has been unfaithful and controlling since they’ve been married and that she has not been happy in years.

We promised one another that we would marry and “live happily ever after.” It seemed like we had things all worked out and started dreaming and planning for the future. I divorced my wife and have completely dedicated myself to Meg. I do everything for this woman. I wait on her hand and foot. I buy her what she needs. I go out of my way for her mother and children. I can't think of any other way to show her I love her and how dedicated I am to our relationship.

I suppose you can already guess what’s coming next. Meg has not left her husband yet. She tells me she doesn't know why she can't leave him. She’s always waiting for the right moment, or for him to cheat on her again, or just an easy way out. This is really beginning to wear me down. I have tried to explain to her how much it hurts to know she is with him and that they do things together. She seems sympathetic to my agony and asks me not to give up on her, that she wants to be my wife and for us to have a life together. Having to sneak a kiss or a hug, ducking and dodging, and having to meet somewhere secret to be together is all new to me. I’m beginning to feel like I get the seconds only when her husband doesn't have time for her.

Doc, have I been taken for a ride? Or should I give her the extra time she says she needs? What the heck’s going on?

Freddie - who held up his end of the deal

Hi Freddie,

What do mean, this sordid affair just “happened?” Did this little girl put a gun to your head and make you kiss her? The fact is that each of you should have been off-limits to the other. Lots of people would say you shouldn’t mess around at all until you’re both divorced. Until the two of you are legally free, nothing starts.

If there was nothing between you and your wife, maybe you should have started dating her again, did you think of that? Maybe you should have given her 110% of your time and effort, taken her out every Friday and Saturday night, and tried to fix what went wrong. Pretend a little. Fake it, until you two got it back on track. If your wife’s Interest Level was hovering in the 51% range, you should have tried to fan the embers back to life. Until you did that, Freddie, you had no business getting divorced, and you shouldn’t have been chasing other women. In the words of Brother Love, “Like half the guys in the world, the vows you took didn’t mean a thing.”

Of course things took off between you and Meg like a hurricane. To you Psych majors, forbidden fruit is always a temptation. As Rabbi Love puts it, “It’s like when Eve coaxed Adam to take a bite of that juicy-looking apple -- and he did. Bad decision.”

Now think about this for a minute. If Meg hasn’t been happy at home in years, then why hasn’t she left? But you two still promised each other you’d live happily ever after together. Hold on a second here. Before you go any further, you gotta tell me what kind of hooch you been drinking. Freddie, this is unbelievable. And you know what amazes me most? You’re one of the sharpest guys on the police force, right? You can smell a liar 10 miles away, you can expose a fraud just by looking at him, and you can tell just from the way a guy walks that he’s a dope dealer. But when it comes to the opposite sex, you don’t have a clue. When Meg rubs up against you, you’re as dumb as a wall and as helpless as a baby. Like my cousin Fast Eddie Love says, “Man, this honey must have some set of wheels on her!”

I’m sure you were dreaming and planning for the future, dude. But you didn’t realize that Meg had her own secret agenda that you didn’t know squat about. Dedicating yourself to her completely was a blunder the size of Iraq. What you should have said to her was “Call me when you’re ready!” -- i.e., when you get the divorce papers finalized. (Which is not to say that I approve of this whole mess, but I’m here to help guys in spite of their bad choices.)

If you have to do everything for Meg, why don’t you just go out and get her a seeing-eye dog? Let me get this straight: you spend all your money buying the store for a woman who’s not yours and who still sleeps with her husband? Is that what you’re telling me here? Do you have rocks in your head, Freddie?

Do Meg’s mother and children know that you’re sneaking around with a married woman? What kind of family is this? It’s pathetic; actually, that you bend over backwards doing whatever Meg wants – except the most important thing – telling her NO.

But after all this effort and strain, she still hasn’t dumped her hubby and run straight into your arms. I’m shocked! I can’t believe it! Hand me theanHUa valium!

Know what, Freddie? There’s no need for Meg to leave her husband. Heck, why should she? She’s going to bed with two turkeys! And you actually believe that as soon as her husband cheats -- which will be the nineteenth time he’s done it – it will give her the impetus to leave. The other 18 weren’t quite enough, is that it? Oh, that’s rich. This girl’s a great catch! You gotta love this Meg! And you do, Freddie, you most certainly do.

I’d be jealous too if Meg and her turkey were doing things together. Hey, they’re only husband and wife! When she promises you that she wants to get married and have a life with you, does she do it with a straight face? Or is she pinching her leg really hard and making it bleed while she’s cooking your whopper?

Sneaking, ducking and dodging might be new territory for you, but it’s old hat for her. As General Love says, “Remember, she committed adultery with a whole platoon of other guys before she did it with you.” If you were only second to her husband, I’d feel lucky if I were you!

Have you been taken for a ride? Well, Freddie, let me put it to you this way: you’d be a darned good choice for this year’s Amtrak poster child. By all means, give her the extra time she needs. Tell her to take a hundred, a hundred and fifty years. Like I always tell you guys, you don’t want to pressure the girl!

Wanna know what’s going on here, guy? Meg’s playing you for a monkey. And pal, you never held up your end of your deal because you cheated on your wife and didn’t give her another chance.

Remember, guys: until they’re divorced, they’re off-limits.

Does Tom Brady ever have Trouble Getting Dates?

Hey Doc,

I have a major problem in my life that I just can’t seem to overcome. I think that you are the only person who can give me direction.

I’m 21 and haven’t had a single girlfriend in my life. In fact, I’ve had only four dates. And believe me, I don’t look bad. I’m 6’2” and athletic, and I’m intelligent (I’m an economics major and have a 3.7 GPA). Doc, I’ve tried with about a dozen girls. I succeeded in going out with those four I mentioned, but eventually all of them lost interest.

The reason why two of them rejected me was because I tried to kiss them a little inappropriately. (That’s what they said.) The last girl I went out with, Diana, was really stunning. She also had an extremely nice personality. She was the first girl who agreed to go out with me a second time. Then I tried to kiss her, but the only thing that I achieved was to scare her. She did not agree to go out with me again.

My failure with Diana made me think deeply about myself. I reached the following conclusions:

1. My looks aren’t what’s killing me. One of my dates rejected me for a guy about 6’4”, 130 pounds. She looked even bigger than him.

2. I’m introverted and shy. When I approach a girl I feel anxiety, high blood pressure, and embarrassment. On one recent date, the girl even saw and remarked on how my hand was trembling. I only have this anxiety when I’m with women I have romantic feelings for.

3. I’m a negative thinker. When I see a girl I like, I don’t dare ask her out. This is simply because there is absolutely no reason that would make me believe that she’s going to accept. If I do approach her, it would be with the inner attitude that I’m going to be rejected. I realize that this is a wrong way of thinking but I simply can’t force myself to think in a different way. The feedback that I get from girls is negative.

I would be very grateful if you gave your opinion about my problem.

Dupree - who feels like killing himself

Hi Dupree,

Sure, I can give you all the direction in the world, but are you going to do what I tell you? Or are you going to quit because it’s too hard to get yourself together? Do you want to stay a loser, or are you going to make the commitment to do what it takes to turn yourself into a winner?

First of all, dude, I hate to tell you this, but lots of guys are in the same boat as you but they just won’t admit it. The reason girls lose interest in you is because there’s something physically wrong about you that you’re leaving out of your letter, and/or you don’t know how to talk to them.

It’s funny that two separate girls used the same word – “inappropriate” -- about the way you smooched them. What the heck could you possibly be doing to them? I’d like to go into this in more detail with you, pal, but this column is G-rated.

Nevertheless, it’s a great sign that Diana agreed to go out with you a second time. With everyone else you only got to the first date and then you were history. But with Diana you got a little further. Perchance – assuming she’s not a Professional Dater – you did some things right on that first date that got you to the second. If I were invisible and could have been beside you I would have seen what you did right, or else figured out that Diana was a Professional Dater. And that’s where the importance of memorizing my material comes in – it’s like having me with you all the time. And you don’t say in your letter whether you have the Dating Dictionary or not.

You succeeded only in frightening Diana too, like you did the others, so I have to ask you this question: when you go to kiss a girl, do you go for her neck with your fangs out? Do you have long, stringy hair like Howard Stern after a shower? Guy, since I can’t see your face, what I would do if I were you would be to find a close friend or relative and find out what’s wrong with your mug, because first of all we have to get past the issue of physical attractiveness. And if there’s a problem, then you should undergo some cosmetic surgery or take other steps to rectify it. Maybe you look like a male witch or something like that. (Of course, even weird looks hasn’t hurt guys like Howard Stern when it comes to women. Like my Uncle Jethro Love says, “You ever see some of Marilyn Manson’s girlfriends before he went and got married? Hubba-hubba!”)

Now, let’s take a look at the conclusions you drew about yourself.

We don’t know for sure that your looks aren’t killing you. As my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “Hey, maybe you got a mole on the end of your nose the size of a turnip.” And maybe that guy who was built like a string bean was a male model with a washboard stomach and a great face. Don’t forget the immortal words of my cousin General Love: “Remember, when it comes to war, you can never have enough weapons. Soldier, on the dating battlefield you can never be good-looking enough!”

You should feel embarrassment, anxiety, high blood pressure and all the rest of it when you hit on a girl you don’t know because you’re going up to a complete stranger. So that’s not abnormal in itself. But if you’re introverted and shy, the first thing you need to do is grow a personality. You need to take speech classes and then give talks on my principles. You also need to go to improv class and learn how to be funny. And you have to keep improving yourself until you calm down when talking to people about my material and making them laugh with my material.

Like I said before, pretty much every guy feels some sort of anxious discomfort when he’s with a woman he likes. But if it’s so bad you can’t control your physical reactions and symptoms, you have to go and see someone who’s got a sheepskin on his wall. If the whole process is that painful for you, you should go and consult some type of professional counselor who can help you. On the other hand I do know this: if you memorized my book and were able to get up and lecture on it in front of a hundred people, one or two women in the audience would think you’re cute and you’d be on your way.

Your third point is the saddest of all. Because do you know what you’ve done here? You’ve given up hope. To you Psych majors, as long as you’re breathing and you can get to the door to ring the bell, there’s hope. But you have to change your Attitude. You have to look at the fact that you’re in good health and you live in the greatest country that ever existed with a standard of living higher than anywhere else in the world. That’s what counts.

Finally, you have to stop taking women to heart. Like Doctor Freud once said, “Your entire existence is wrapped up in whether or not they like you. That’s nuts!”

Thinking that all females are going to reject you is a half-truth. Sure, the majority is going to reject you, but the majority of women reject most guys. But that doesn’t mean you can’t try. The feedback from women is negative for most guys. But the muddy water will clear as soon as you have the right education, which means you follow my strategies.

My friend, I’m a coach, not a shrink. In your case there is the possibility that you have some deep, deep problems – no offense intended. Some of the things you talk about are borderline off the deep end. Those kinds of problems are not my area of expertise. So it’s up to you to do what you need to do get yourself straightened out.

Dupree, unload the gun, put it back in the drawer, and you’ll be okay when you get the proper help and memorize my book.

Remember, guys: the key to women is to not take them personally.

Did Ashton Kutcher ever Complain about Dating Older Women?

Hey Doc,

I’m a 24-year-old man who works as a personal trainer. I bought and read “The System” and I thought all my troubles with women were over. However, this is far from the case. In fact, I think that I had more success with women before I got your book.

I’m a good-looking guy, which might be part of the problem. Do good- looking guys have to do anything different than the average guy when it comes to dating? What exactly are the rules when women make comments on your looks? Not too long ago a friend was telling me that girls don’t like to have relationships with good-looking guys because they think the guys are more likely to cheat on them and that they’re mostly interested in us for a one-night stand. And in fact I’ve had women approach me very aggressively at parties and try to take me into a back room. When I didn’t give them what they were after, they wanted nothing to do with me. I’m not a one-night stand type of guy.

To make matters worse, older women are always trying to pick me up and I always seem to have trouble with girls my own age. Another friend – a woman – told me that girls my age find me “intimidating.” Rarely a day goes by when one of these “desperate housewives” doesn’t hint at going out with me or even makes an overt sexual comment. Perhaps you could help me with that one?

Here’s a specific example of my problems. I knew Shannon, who’s around my age, from the gym, though I never asked her out. Recently I went up to her, made small talk, then asked for her e-mail address. She wrote down her phone number as well and said, “Call me sometime next week.”

I waited six days to call, and when I did she said, “Can you call me back later? I’m about to eat dinner with my family.” I said, “This won’t take long. I’m going to Dairy Queen on Sunday and would like you to join me.” She said, “I’m working all weekend.” There was no counteroffer. A few days later I e-mailed her, saying that she seemed like a very busy person and asked when a good time to call her was. I never got a reply. That means that her Interest Level dropped below 50%. Now obviously it was above 50% when she gave me her e-mail and number because she went out of her way to write them down. What caused her Interest Level to drop? I hardly said anything!

Doc, I’ve followed your techniques as closely as I know how. Am I doing something wrong or is there something wrong with these girls?

Alex - who’s sick and tired of being frustrated

Hi Alex,

I know you’ve got my book, but right there’s your problem – you bought it and only read it, and that’s not enough. What have I told you guys again and again? In order for the principles to sink in, you have to commit it to memory. You have to log more library time, my friend.

Let’s talk about this “problem” you have with your looks, and let’s think about you’re saying. You start out pretty good with women, right? And you go out and get another book that makes you even better with women, right? But after you read the book, whatever mojo you had with the babes suddenly drops off. Maybe it’s because what you were reading didn’t sink in. Did you ever think about that?

Now let’s take a look at your next statement: “I’ve got a problem -- I’m a good-looking guy.” Wow. Every other guy on the planet would kill to look like George Clooney or Brad Pitt (personally, I’d like to look like Cary Grant), so how the heck can that be a problem? Like Doctor Freud says, “Son, you’re living in an alternate reality.”

Alex, you’re good-looking. Out of 100 guys you’re in the top eight. How could you actually buy my book and maintain that being good-looking is a drawback? Sure, things are different for good-looking guys when it comes to dating. Like the Reality Factor points out, “They talk a lot less because they don’t have to sell themselves as much.” Want to know what you say when women comment on your movie-star looks? You say thank you very much. You smile. You’re a gentleman, remember? Be gracious.

So, in your universe girls don’t like to date good-looking guys. Then how is it that good-looking guys always have girls? It’s a half-truth that women only want you stud-muffins for one-night stands. And what do I tell you in the Dating Dictionary? Don’t listen to half-truths. Alex, what book did you buy? I don’t think it was mine.

Like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “When they want to take you into a back room, pal, it proves you don’t look like Danny DeVito.” But you’re not a one-night-stand type of guy. Hey, why would you want anyone using and abusing that beautiful body of yours?

It’s true that you’re probably a little intimidating to some girls because you’re so good-looking. It means they know that other good-looking girls are after you. “Kitty Kats Kompete,” remember? Now I’m sure you didn’t memorize my book! When you get a blatant come-on from an old lady, just quote my cousin Fast Eddie Love: “Thanks, but I’d prefer going out with your daughter.”

Well, it’s good you didn’t ask Shannon out right off the bat. You were able to figure out that you were going to see her all the time at the gym, so you didn’t lose your Self-Control, move in like a battering ram and try to close. But then your clear thinking crashed.

Alex, why in the world didn’t you go for Shannon’s home phone number when you finally made your move? Why did you ask for the e-mail address? In my book I only tell you 68 times to ask for the home phone number, and you go and ask for the e-mail. This is so basic, man. It’s like walking up to a house, expecting to get in, but not pushing the doorbell! What were you thinking? Were you thinking at all?

When Shannon ordered you to call her next week, know what you should have done? Called her in two weeks to show her you have a backbone. But you don’t, and that’s why you didn’t. That’s okay. Ninety percent of your brothers don’t either. Blame it on Oprah.

But hey – you waited six whole days to pick up the phone. I’m shocked you held out that long! When she told you to call back after dinner, that was Woman Talk for “Why don’t you call me back in about 39 years?”

But then you hit on the idea for Dairy Queen, expecting to turn the tide. You were going to take Shannon to Dairy Queen? Dude, you gotta stop throwing your money around on these girls! If you’re springing for dates like Dairy Queen, you better be the owner of the health club!

Guy, the second Shannon told you she’d rather eat than talk to you, you should have gotten out of there. You made a double fool out of yourself.

What you don’t get about Shannon’s Interest Level was that it plummeted way back when. Alex, I hate to break this to you, but 40% of the women who give you their phone numbers have low Interest Level. Maybe Shannon prefers doctors to personal trainers. Or maybe that Dairy Queen offer was just too overwhelming for her to deal with and she couldn’t think of what to wear.

What caused Shannon’s Interest Level to drop? I can’t believe that you own my book. You might be able to bench-press 350 pounds, but when it comes to common sense, you got problems. Following my techniques “the best you know how” is your biggest problem. Sixty-eight guys ask for the home phone number like I tell them to in my book, and here you are asking for an e-mail address. Have you checked your reading comprehension lately?

The younger girls aren’t doing anything wrong. They’re doing everything right by rejecting you. Get into that library every Sunday for four hours with your yellow marker and start highlighting and MEMORIZING. The reason you’re having problems with females, dude -- and I don’t care if they’re 18 or 58 -- is because you haven’t got my book down cold.

Remember, guys: even if you’re as gorgeous as the Gods can make you, you’ll still talk yourself out of the deal if you don’t understand “The System.”

Would Dennis Rodman ask Permission to Take Her Out?


I’ve read your book and I agree with your principles. I salute you and I’m very grateful for the knowledge you are imparting to us guys.

Here’s my problem. You’ve written that your techniques apply across the globe, but I’m starting to think twice. I’m a college student and live in the Philippines. In this country we practice traditional Christian courting. This has been ingrained in us since 1600 A.D. We call this mating dance “ligaw.” Women here are half-traditional and half-liberated. Normally in “ligaw” the man befriends the girl first. It’s so useless. Worse, it’s anti-Challenge.

In this culture we become stooges for the woman, Doc. We carry her bag and open doors for her. We offer to escort her home, and as always, we pay for the transportation. We mingle with her friends and often eat lunch with them. (Yup, it’s like a group date. I know that “The System” tells us to isolate the girl from her group so that we can go one on one, but it’s different here.)

Then there are the mushy and romantic text messages that we have to send her to make her feel we love her. We guys meet their parents early in this mating dance. Any dates we schedule have to go through them first, and it’s their decision whether we can even take the girl out or not. This process may take two months and can stretch up to five months. Tradition is nothing but a waste of time! And all that time we can’t be seen courting other ladies since that would mean infidelity. And Doc, news spreads faster here than a brushfire.

At the end of this ordeal, you have to ask her if she wants to be your girlfriend. You see, Doc, in our tradition the power of the guys in the mating dance is given up early.

By contrast, America is an efficient country. There you can ask the girl up front for her home phone number and call her for a date. Here, if you call her and ask for a date, she’ll decline. Why? Because if she accepts the date on just a call, she’ll be branded a slut. Women here are expected to be shy and reserved. They don’t go out with men on their own. That’s why group dates are one of the best shots we guys can take. We can’t even kiss them after a date. A kiss is totally sacred and we guys are considered disrespectful if we try to go for that smooch.

Doc, how can I short-circuit this morass of tradition? I know I can’t break it altogether, but I have to find a way to apply your techniques. I’ve been wracking my brain for days searching for applications of “The System” in my situation. Love Soldier reporting for duty, Doc!

Carlos - who feels at a complete disadvantage

Hi Carlos,

Thanks very much for the compliment. And don’t worry. We’re going to work this thing out. That’s my job. And that’s why you guys contact me from all over the world. And I really appreciate the time you took to write your letter.

So, your Filipino mating dance goes back over 400 hundred years. That’s not so old, pal. Look at it this way -- “The System” goes all the way back to Adam and Eve. As far as “ligaw” is concerned, there’s a way to attack it from within. What you’re going to do is work on the liberated side of these babes

It’s okay to befriend the girls you’re interested in, Carlos. Doing that isn’t at cross-purposes to my principles. In a minute I’ll show you how you’re going to operate.

Of course tradition is anti-Challenge. But what you’re going to do is deploy Challenge in the areas that are open to you. You won’t be able to work it quite as much, but you’ll work it nevertheless, as much as you’re able to. And since it’s such a powerful, basic element in the relations between men and women, giving her a portion of Challenge still separates you from everyone else around you, because they won’t be using any Challenge at all.

When you talk about being stooges for women, are you referring to the guys in the Philippines or the United States? Like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “We got the same sickness over here, baby.” But it’s all right to carry bags and open doors for her. The important thing is whether or not she says “Thank you.” Does she gaze into your eyes? Do they get real big when she sees you? Is she happy to be near you when you do these little things for her?

Because if she doesn’t, this is the last time you’re carrying her bags or opening the door or doing anything else for her. If she shows no gratitude or interest, this girl’s a-goner and you’re quickly moving on to a new adventure. What you’re doing is testing her by the standards of “The System” in your own culture. In this case, you’re measuring her level of appreciation for you.

Carlos, you should see the girl home. You’re a gentleman. You’ve got to be gallant. And you should pay her way, too. No matter where in the world a guy is, he has to show class at all times. Remember to keep watching those Cary Grant flicks. And you can find his movies in the Philippines, too.

Now, if she has to go out with her friends, you have to go ahead and work with that. To you Psych majors, my principles work everywhere, and in every circumstance. They’d work in a prison cell. They’d work on the moon. Here’s how to employ my techniques: when you’re mingling with her and her friends, you have to gauge how much time she spends talking to you versus looking at and talking to other people around the table. Because if she pays more attention to the others than she does to you, that means she has low Interest Level. And that’s how we’ll work around the fact that you can’t isolate her at first.

Dude, you don’t have to send any mushy, romantic text messages. Get that out of your head right now. After you see her and she shows you strong buying signals, just send her an e-mail and say “Thank you for the very nice time. I hope you had the same.” Hopefully she’ll get back to you with “Of course I did! When are we getting together again?” And you’ll say, “Talk to your friends and we’ll all do it again.” The point is that you’re not afraid of anything, and you can handle whatever comes your way. The only thing that you’re not going to put up with is low Interest Level.

You’re going to have to deal with moms and pops, Carlos. I want you to meet them because if you don’t, they’re potential blockers. So if you have to go through them to get to her, you’ll do just that. If you can’t duck them, you’ll have to meet them head on, and the sooner the better. Because in your country, her parents are just the first obstacles in the dating process.

Don’t invest all those months waiting the girl out, though. You’ve got to move it along faster, pal. And you’re going to do that by reading her Interest Level, like I said before. If she doesn’t show a significant amount of interest, she’s going to be history by the second date. And like I said, check out the attention she pays you when she’s with her friends.

You’re concerned about being seen with other women? Like my cousin Fast Eddie Love says, “You’re not sneaky enough, man, that’s your problem.” You’ve got to be a little bit of an operator so you don’t end up wasting your time with only one who might turn out to be a dud. If I gave you a million bucks to meet a honey on the other side of town, could you do it?

On the other hand, maybe you live in a small town, in which case your caution is understandable. All the more reason for going through these girls faster than water through a garden hose. If you tell her you want to meet your parents and she says you can’t, it’s “Nice talking to you – NEXT!”

Buddy, you’re NEVER going to ask her if she wants to be your girl. She’s going to have to bring it up to YOU. You’ll only ask her that question after she suggests it. Begging is counter to Challenge.

You’re not going to ask her out by phone. Like my cousin Rabbi Love says, “We wouldn’t want her getting a bad reputation, would we?” Like I said, ask instead if you can meet mom and dad. And don’t go for the smooch. That will come later, once she’s hooked.

Guys, when you’re hamstrung by strict tradition, you’re going to have to be extra-shrewd. Wherever there’s any wiggle room at all, use Challenge. But Carlos, you should have figured this out early on. You haven’t got my book memorized. Go back and read it 10 times.

Remember, guys: like I’ve said so many times before, “The System” cuts across all cultural boundaries.

Would 50 Cent give Her a Second Change to Show Up?

Hey Doc,

I’m looking for some advice regarding whether or not I should give a woman a second chance to make a first impression after I was stood up on our very first date.

I met Pamela on Match.com. When I told (not asked) her that she should join me on Thursday evening at a local brewery and then come along to see a new exhibit at an art gallery, she said she loved the idea and the direct approach I used with her to set precise plans. (All of this was accomplished via e-mail; I was waiting to meet Pamela face to face before asking for her home telephone number.)

A couple of days later Pamela learned that she’d landed a prime apartment and would need to begin packing for the move to her new place. She asked if we could change our date to a week later, and I agreed to her counteroffer.

To make a long story short, she was a no-show for the make-up date. I e-mailed her the next morning, told her how disappointed I was and that I was looking for a woman who demonstrates Integrity when it comes to keeping her commitments. A woman who truly possesses class and consideration would have either kept our commitment to meet, or let me know she wasn’t interested.

Here’s what she wrote back: “Oh my god, I am so incredibly sorry! You know I just moved and everything is scattered this week. I have never stood up a human being in my entire life and would never intentionally do so. I cannot apologize enough, or stress enough how sincere my regrets are. If you can forgive me, I’d love to make it up to you.”

Doc, intuitively, I’m done with this woman. Here are some key reasons why: 1) There is no specific reason given for her oversight, other than to say, “everything is scattered this week.” 2) I’m assuming Pamela has an electronic paper trail of our communiqués sitting in her inbox that could easily act as a set of reminders for our date. 3) Pamela says she’d “love to make it up to me,” but makes no commitment towards specifics or how she plans to do so. Wouldn’t a woman of true class and consideration put some effort into helping me forgive her via a new set of date plans? 4) As you say, a woman with a high Interest Level doesn’t forget a date with a man she’s keenly interested in meeting, right?

Doc, do I give Pamela a second chance?

Anderson - who would rather not get burned again

Hi Anderson,

Let me ask you a question. Was the city working on sewers the day you got stood up by Pamela? Maybe they forgot to put up a MEN AT WORK sign and the poor girl fell into an open manhole, thereby rendering her unable to make your date. Right. But the odds of that happening were better than a girl with high Interest Level breaking a date.

When Pamela paid you a compliment on your date-planning ability, it was a red flag if I ever saw one. As the old saying goes, “Beware of Greeks bearing gifts.” Some women will compliment you when they have low Interest Level. It’s a purely off-the-cuff remark that has no basis in reality. Like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “She’s softening you up for what she’s going to pull on you later.”

Going for her phone number when you were face to face with Pamela was certainly the right idea, except that you missed one crucial step, my friend. You were supposed to do Starbucks with her first before dragging her out to paint the town. Anderson, you had no time in with this girl. Not even one second. You didn’t meet her at a business convention and talk to her for 45 minutes over coffee, or go out to lunch with her before asking for the home phone number. You had nothing. Like my cousin General Love says, “You committed the fatal error of counting your chickens before they hatched.”

Now think about what happened next. Pamela would rather pack dusty old books in boxes than be with a man she’s supposedly going to be in love with. She’d rather wrap up her kitchen utensils than spend time with the man she would want to be the father of her kids.

So now this girl has stood you up a second time. Let’s set our egos aside if we can and ask ourselves a question. As my cousin Fast Eddie Love puts it, “Would a nice girl with high Interest Level screw me over twice?”

After that humiliation you needed to lash out, and so you jumped all over Pamela with your disappointment over her lack of Integrity. Anderson, if this girl had high Interest Level, it would have been okay to do that because it would have hurt her and she would then have had to think about changing her behavior. But this girl had already written you off. In fact, since you never went out with her, you weren’t even in a position to get written off! You were actually written off the second she said “Sure, I’ll meet you at the brewery!” There’s absolutely no evidence whatsoever that Pamela ever once said to herself, “You know what, I can’t wait to meet this guy!” Instead of telling her what you wanted in a woman, you’d have been better off taking a picture down and talking to the wall.

It’s true that a woman of class would have kept her commitment to meet you, but you’re wrong about the second part. A woman is the unlikeliest creature in the world to come right out and tell you the truth: that she has no interest at all in going out with you. Even if Pamela had a big mess on her hands with this move, if she had one iota of real interest in you she would have been thinking to herself, “Boy, I can’t wait until Thursday night to get together with Anderson!”

Then she wrote you that heartfelt e-mail apologizing for her misdeeds. But sadly, that’s where the Womanese comes in. When she protested that she “never stood up a human being” in her entire life, what she really meant was “this week!”

Here’s what Pamela was supposed to have said to end this debacle: “Anderson, I’ll tell you what. Here’s my address. Here’s my cell, business and home phone numbers. I want you to come over to my apartment a week from Wednesday. You tell me what kind of dinner you like most and I’ll cook it for you because I want to prove to you that I’m not the kind of girl who breaks dates.” But she didn’t.

Now, on to your reasons for deleting her e-mail address from your computer forever.

On number 1, you’re dead on. “Everything is scattered” is not a specific enough excuse. I’m impressed with your reasoning here, Anderson.

You’re a little off-base on number 2, the electronic paper trail. I get so much e-mail that I have no choice but to get rid of it. Maybe that’s what Pamela did.

On number 3, you hit it right on the nose, baby. Bingo. Pamela should have come back with a solid plan to make up for dissing you not once, but twice. Right there you get an A. But here’s the thing. A woman of class and consideration would have kept the first date. You just found out a little later rather than sooner that you got all wound up over nothing.

On number 4, you’re really way off base. How could Pamela have high Interest Level in you? You didn’t pass the Physical Attraction Test, Anderson. She only saw your photo on Match.com. And we all know how pictures can lie.

Should you give Pamela a second chance? Like my Uncle Jethro Love says, “Boy, do you know how many guys she does this to?” There’s your answer. You figure it out.

Remember, guys: until you have a few dates under your belt, you’re not even in the game.

Does Steve Martin use a Form Letter when Online Dating?

Hey Doc,

Thanks for your years of great service to men. I am an adherent of your principles, which you so humorously and effectively explain in your weekly column. Now I’ve become addicted to your radio show, too. What are the chances that you’ll become syndicated? Let me tell you, I think that we can all do with a dose of your advice!

I’ve been thinking about starting to use Match.com to meet women. It seems that these days the bar and club scene is dead, and instead everybody is online getting dates. I don’t know if it’s an effective way of meeting people, but it seems to be worth the shot since that’s where the game is, right?

So here’s my question: do you have any suggestions for what to say when contacting a woman on Match.com? In fact, can you give us guys a blueprint for how to do it? In other words, what do you say in your intro, the next paragraph and the next paragraph, how do you wrap it up, etc. I’m okay when I meet a woman face to face, but frankly, I’m not exactly sure how to deal with her when you can’t see her. It seems to put a guy at a disadvantage.

Here’s something else: the women’s screen names are usually not their real names. Is it a good idea to go after their real names right off or let that come later when a beachhead has been established?

Also, are there any signs to look for when exchanging e-mails with Match.com women? Now that I think of it, the question I guess I’m really asking is how can you gauge a woman’s Interest Level across the computer? Don’t you really have to be in a female’s presence to accurately assess it?

I’m asking you this now before I actually take the plunge. Like you always say, it’s better to be completely prepared before going out on the battlefield.

Thanks, Doc. Looking forward to your response.

Jared - who feels awkward at the computer terminal

Hi Jared,

I really appreciate what you said about me, and thank you for being so supportive. But I want you to do me an enormous favor. It’s extremely important that you set my book by your bed and read it every night. And remember to do it for the rest of your life, even after 35 years of marriage. It’s the most airtight safeguard you can give yourself when it comes to dealing with women, and its principles are eternal.

But let’s get back to meeting her.

Here’s the truth about the bar and club scene: it’s not the greatest place to meet women. It’s too dark, there’s too much smoke, too much booze flowing, and that’s when people have a tendency to tell lies. If you go out to a club, you want to be there with your buddies, having fun talking about the old days, boxing, business, and, of course, women. But if you happen to see somebody you dig in a bar or club, you have to ask her to dance. But don’t go there hoping to pick up Miss Right. The odds aren’t good.

Jared, online IS where the dating game is these days, make no mistake about it, and in front of the terminal screen is where you have to be. Even my Uncle Jethro Love says “Boy, you’s dead in the water with the girls without your Macintosh!” But before you log on, you have to be prepared and you have to have a very strict game plan.

And the aim of plan is to get the girl through the door of Starbucks. There you are at home, pal, with just your laptop and no girlfriend, and your goal is to eventually say: “Caprice, very nice to meet you! Have a seat.”

When she arrives, you buy her a mocha valencia and you talk for 45 minutes. Afterwards you walk her out to her car and she says, “Wow, Jared, I had a nice time! Please give me a call and we’ll get together again.” Then she hugs you, gets into her car and drives away. Guys, if we’re going to sell ourselves, we have to get the buyer in front of us for 45 minutes at Starbucks.

So here’s what you say when you’re at the keyboard. Since the ladies always ask what you’re looking for, you’re going to tell them, “I’m looking for a Self-Reliant, Flexible Giver who will laugh at my corny jokes. Let’s meet at Starbucks and see if I can make you giggle.” There’s your icebreaker.

You want a blueprint? A piece of cake. Like my cousin Fast Eddie Love says, “The point is to make ’em laugh and tell ’em nothin’.” If you get a positive response on Match.com – a wink – toss into your e-mail that you’re a busy guy and that you have tons of fun on the weekends. In your second paragraph, keep on keeping it light. Does she like to dance? Does she like to travel to Vegas or New York? What babe doesn’t like to dance or go places? Then ask her about Match.com to remind her that you don’t want to just be her e-mail “buddy.”

Jared, you’re afraid of the wrong things. The fact is that it’s a lot easier to deal with a woman when you can’t see her. You’re most definitely not at a disadvantage, because on the Internet you can check out up to 200 pictures within a half-hour. Then you pare it down to 45 or so, and out of that 45 you give the best ones a wink. You’re going to dance back and forth with a few e-mails, then you go for the home phone number.

And she’s going to say (hopefully) “Here it is,” or “I’ll give it to you when we meet.” Then you have to get her to show up for her coffee. Make sure you give her the Starbucks telephone number and detailed directions and that the place has plenty of parking because a lot of these girls won’t show if they have the slightest excuse.

As far as her onscreen name goes, if she wants to call herself “Anita The Hun,” that’s her right. You’ll get her real name if she’s really interested.

So to sum it up, break the ice, exchange your e-mails, then ask for the home phone number and a 45-minute date at Starbucks. Of course you can’t completely gauge a woman’s Interest Level across the computer, but to you Psych majors, the more detailed her responses are to your e-mails, the easier she makes it for you to contact her in person, and the more questions she asks you, you can bet her Interest Level is clinically alive.

Remember, some women will meet a guy for coffee. When she walks in the door, you’ll witness her female presence in the flesh. Then you’ll sit down with her for a chat, and it’ll be easy to assess whether she likes you or thinks you’re the worst thing since Osama Bin Laden.

When it comes to being completely prepared before going onto the battlefield, like my cousin Brother Love down in Watts says, “Amen, Bro!”

Remember, guys: if you don’t go packing, you can’t go off to war.

How did Joe Piscopo Maneuver around his Wife's Parents?

Hey Doc,

I’ve been reading you for quite a while now (two to three years), but only lately started to realize that “The System” contains no false or optional statements. It really has helped me not only understand relationships, but also develop a backbone for business.

On with my situation. I met Allegra over the internet. It was a quick chat (no photos), she left me her number, and I called after seven days and asked for a date. She accepted, and the first date went really well. I stood by your principles, looked her in the eyes at all times (the fact that she’s Beautiful helped) and guided her into talking about herself. I watched her Interest Level slowly rise. She started touching me, looked back into my eyes and asked me questions. I walked her home and didn’t kiss her.

After five days, I called and ask her for another date, during the week, of course. She accepted, but showed up with a girlfriend. After 10 minutes, a boyfriend joined the “date.” After another 10 minutes I excused myself and left. The strange thing was that while I was there, Allegra gave me a lot of signals, including mentioning to her girlfriend that she’s single and wants to change that.

Two days later I got a phone message from Allegra in which she said she felt sorry that the date didn’t go as planned. After three days I called and asked for a date, not mentioning what happened. She refused the suggested date but quickly counter-offered with a date for a stage play.

Halfway through the date I leaned over and kissed her. She kissed me back. I gauged her Interest Level to be over 80%, just how you taught me to. So I feel that I righted the ship after that disastrous second date.

The problem, Doc, is that her parents have some strict rules. She’s 19 and a student. I’m 22, also a student and working. She has to be home before seven o’clock and I barely get out of work by nine o’clock. This makes dating during weekdays impossible. I actually had to skip a conference call to meet her today, but she doesn’t know this.

Doc, Allegra has Integrity (she never seems to have lied to me), Flexibility (we get along fine and she has a nice Attitude), and Giving. For instance, she smokes and I don’t. She asked me if kissing a girl who just smoked is unpleasant for me. I said yes and she immediately put the cigarette back in the pack.

This girl really has potential, but I’m just not able to cope with the weekdays-only dating rule. Perhaps meeting her parents would help. Any advice, Doc?

Ira - who feels hampered by the techniques that helped him

Hi Ira,

For eight years I taught seminars in Los Angeles. Lots of guys who own their own businesses have called me back over the years to tell me how well the principles of “The System” carry over into their business and professional lives. But I don’t think it’s just a matter of “carrying over.” I believe that a universal truth is involved in my techniques, and that’s why they work.

Now let me just get this straight. You and Allegra didn’t even see photos of each other and you got together for a date? She didn’t even know what you looked like and here she was giving you her number? Wasn’t that all a little too fast? Wasn’t that a little dangerous, with all the wackos running around out there? Didn’t Allegra ever hear of Ted Bundy?

That aside, I have to say that you acted perfectly on your first date. So far you get an A. And if Allegra’s as much of a knockout as you say she is, it doesn’t surprise me in the least that she warmed to the task of talking about herself. When it comes to the Beautiful Woman, it’s always all about her, isn’t it? And that’s your problem in a nutshell, but we’ll get into that in a second.

Then she showed up on your second date with a girlfriend. Uh-oh. Huge problem. Massive problem. The first thing that occurs to me is that this girl’s a control freak. But hey, maybe she just wanted to have her girlfriend along for the ride. So what the heck – you don’t mind, right, Ira? Allegra’s 19, she’s got long, gorgeous legs like Elle MacPherson, bee-stung lips like Angelina Jolie, and a butt like J-Lo and she doesn’t need makeup. In other words, she’s a total fox. So what’s the problem with bringing her friend along? Why doesn’t she have a perfect right to change the rules of the date? Why not throw you a wicked curveball? You’ll be back, right, Ira? Every other guy has been, ever since she was 12.

But, you protest, she sent you some vague “signals” on that wonderful date. Let me ask you something: why are you and most of the other men out there just dying to kiss and make up with these hotties -- and after she slights you, puts you down, changes the rules of the date? Like Doctor Freud once said, “When it comes to Beauty, oh, how men love to be tortured!”

To you Psych majors, when she acts like this, it’s a MAJOR red flag – not a tiny red flag. This girl was inconsiderate. She has no manners. She has no breeding. But like my cousin Fast Eddie Love says, “Other than that, she’s great!”

Ira, you can’t really mean you actually called this little hussy three days after she dissed you. With the way she insulted you, it should have been two weeks -- if ever! (But you’re not strong enough for that.) And when you talked to her, you should have mentioned what happened on your second date. Know what you should have asked Allegra? “By the way, how many more people are going to show up on our next date? Are you bringing your grandma along too this time?”

But apparently that wasn’t enough wimping around for you. You leaned over and kissed her in the middle of the show. Mistake! This girl’s on serious probation and here you’re fawning and slobbering over her in a theater?

But her Interest Level – according to you -- is over 80%. Sure it is, pal. So why is she hauling all of her friends along on your dates? You guys kill me. To you Psych majors (again), when a girl pulls a stunt like that, her Interest Level is more like 51%. Are you sure you read my book?

Why are you talking about setting things right with Allegra? Your second date was a disaster because SHE threw YOU a slider. You didn’t do anything wrong – she did!

Guy, Allegra’s parents have nothing to do with any of this. They’re eighteenth on the list of what’s wrong. You’re giving Allegra a pass on the first 17. She’s your problem, Ira, not ma and pa.

Here’s what you do. If you insistent on letting Allegra toy with your head, take her out in the afternoon on your days off. Ask her out for noon and have her home by 5:30. Better yet, try the morning. If you do that, maybe all her friends will be in class and won’t be able to join you.

How can you say Allegra has even an ounce of Integrity? She broke the rules of the dating contract! When a girl accepts a date with a guy, unless she clears it with him first, she doesn’t bring anybody else along. It’s a hard and fast rule. Flexible? Hell, no. She’s as structured as a brick wall. Giving? I don’t think so. She’s so selfish, she brings all her buddies on your dates. She’s a real Giver, all right. Maybe by “giving,” you mean she’s giving you a hard time.

Oh, but then there’s her incredible consideration in not lighting up once when you were with her. But she didn’t give smoking up, did she? Sure she’s got potential – she’s got the potential for developing lung cancer when she’s 59 from smoking two packs a day for 40 years. What does this girl have to do, Ira, burn your house down before you get the drift?

It never ceases to amaze me how you guys will rationalize for a hot babe. When you like a woman, especially when she’s 19 and a looker, it’s incredible what you’ll overlook, what she can get away with. It stupefies me. Like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “It ain’t no wonder you got troubles with women.”

Finally, what have I told you guys again and again about dating 18 to 22-year-olds? Look at the stuff this one’s pulling. At that age they’re ditzy. They fall in and out of love every five minutes.

Remember, guys: if you employ my techniques correctly, you’ll never feel hampered.

Does J-Lo ever Feel like the "Other Woman?"

Hey Doc,

I always read your articles and like the way you tell it. I have a unique problem and can’t find a similar situation among my friends or in your literature. I went through a very hard time with my marriage, and stuck out 10 years before realizing it was going to kill me if I stayed. I am a doctor, and have never considered having an affair. At the end of my marriage I became good friends with a nurse, Mona, who was also getting a divorce. We were supportive of each other, and agreed to keep it on a platonic level. But when I made the decision to proceed with my divorce, she confessed she loved me, and I also had to admit I had very strong feelings toward her, and we looked forward to the day when we could have a romantic relationship.

During the final stages of the divorce, we began dating and did some couple-type behavior -- hugging, kissing, and holding hands. Then, all of a sudden, she stopped returning calls. The few times I was able to talk to her she was vague and distant and finally said that she wanted space. She let me know that she felt like she was “the other woman” and that she didn’t want to feel that my divorce was because of her. I know that this was very distressing to her because her husband had cheated on her constantly, and for her to feel the stigma of being the other woman really affected her.

I did what most men mistakenly do -- gave presents, begged her to talk, sent her long love letters. I even fooled myself into thinking that she just wanted to keep a distance until the ink was dry on the divorce papers.

But then I found out that she started seeing someone else. She claimed she still loved me, though. Initially I reacted with anger, but after several days I cooled down enough to let her know that we had meant a lot to each other and if she wanted to try and salvage our friendship I would be willing to talk to her.

I didn’t hear from her for two months, and since I needed some sort of closure I e-mailed her to tell her to stay away from me and not contact me anymore. Well, she answered me, and we started talking again and then became friends again.

We talk on the phone for a couple hours every day now, and when we’re together we hold hands and cuddle. She will not kiss or have any intimacy beyond this and still says that she only wants friendship. I am getting very mixed signals, and have never heard of a woman doing these things but only wanting to be friends. She’s not interested in seeing anyone else, and I am the only “man” in her life right now.

Doc, I don’t know whether to hang in and hope that things will change or take the approach of acting disinterested to see if this will perk up her Interest Level and make her realize that I am a good catch.

I really love this woman, but don’t like what I have now and am very frustrated. I certainly don’t want to ruin any chance of a relationship with Mona if I can help it. I know that as of right now I do not have that relationship, but Mona is clearly showing interest and getting something from the coziness we have now. I am very confused and feel powerless. Your advice would be helpful.

Drew - who needs to break the impasse

Hi Drew,

First of all, I want to commend you for staying in your marriage for as long as you did. When it was all over you wanted to say, “I was going for ‘forever’ like I promised at the altar. I did my best to make the long haul, and I didn’t just say ‘I do’ to fool around with this girl for 10 years.” But like my cousin Sal “The Fish” Love says, “Some women can kill you without a knife.”

When you hooked up with Mona, you should have realized right off the bat that you were dealing with two people who were seriously on the rebound and not really available. It was like throwing Jennifer Aniston together with Kenny Chesney. In other words, you had all the ingredients for disaster. What the heck were you thinking, man?

Why were you getting all heavy with a woman who was still married? I tell you guys not to talk serious when they’re available. Mona’s still legally hitched and you’re blabbing about the future? You should have been putting on a clown show, not a “psychology today” seminar. You would been better off disappearing instead of yakking about how you’re going to get re-hitched the minute you’re free of your wife.

But you went ahead and engaged in “couple-type” behavior anyway. Like 90% of the men out there, you had to go rushing in like a bull in a china shop. The problem is that you, like everybody else, think only in the short term. Nobody thinks long term. And that’s what “The System” is all about.

Mona stopped returning your calls? Drew, I’m positively shocked! Women never do that! They’re not known for inconsistent behavior! We got one for the Guinness Book of Records here! Are you sure this really happened?

She was vague and distant and wanted her space? Boy, you got all the luck. You just got rid of one hellcat, and the second one’s beating up on you before you’re even out of the cage. One drove you nuts, and you already have another one trying to do the same thing. Any normal human being would throw in the towel.

So, Mona doesn’t want to feel like the other woman, huh? Like I’ve told you guys before, they always give you the SECOND reason why they’re cutting you loose. Remember when the born-again Christian Jane Fonda said, “I can’t live with an atheist” when she split with “Mister Moneybags” Ted Turner? I’ll bet you anything she wasn’t so religious when she had 99% Interest Level in old Ted.

Know what’s great about most women? They love to concoct a darned good back-up story instead of the real deal. They always come up with wonderful, inventive whoppers that don’t have anything to do with you.

Drew, if you knew that giving presents and sending mushy letters was wrong, why in the world did you do it? That was your fault. It was Mona’s fault that she didn’t tell you she was waiting for the ink to dry on your divorce papers. What does that say about her?

Now, can you believe Mona started seeing someone else? I can’t. Again, I’m totally shocked. But Drew, seriously, how much more of a beating do you have to take, how much more screwing around with your head do you have to endure, how many more lies do you have to hear before you get past your ego and see reality?

But, you insist -- despite all evidence to the contrary – that Mona still loves you. Like my cousin Fast Eddie Love would say, “Dude, she’s lying through her teeth.” The sad part is that you want to believe her. And you’re a doctor? I hope I never find myself in your emergency room -- I’ll probably end up with a scalpel in my stomach when I come out of the anesthesia.

Why are you checking in with this woman? You’re married, she’s married, and she’s seeing another man. When you were talking to her on the phone, were you on your knees or were you just lying on your stomach?

You weren’t really after closure, Drew. Closure is when you walk away and never look back. But at least you grew a teeny bit of a backbone – until you and Mona became friends again. What you really mean is that you caved in, you weakling.

Now you two are chatting on the phone a couple of hours every day. Is that all? Gee, you should talk longer than that. You know why Mona doesn’t want more intimacy with you? Because she has to save it for her other boyfriend. Actually, you should ask her if she still kisses her husband. So there it is, buddy – after all your groveling and begging she’s kissing two other guys and not you. That’s just great.

Mona doesn’t want friendship either. You know what she really wants? She wants a divorce and she wants to be wrapped in her new boyfriend’s arms. This woman is a user and a drama queen. Gosh, Drew, did you actually believe her when she said she didn’t want to see anyone else? And that you’re the only man in her life? What about her boyfriend and her husband? That sure sounds like a couple of others to me. And like my Uncle Jethro Love would say, “She just keeps you around because you don’t give her no trouble.”

What do I think you should do now? I think you should throw more gold on the sinking ship. As Bill O’Reilly says, “You been drinking too much Kool-Aid!”

Ruining a relationship between the two of you is not even a possibility because Mona’s Interest Level is south of 50%. The reason she returned your call after two months is because she probably had a little argument with her boyfriend or maybe she dropped him.

But it’s your own fault that you’re in this fix. Guys, until you have the paperwork in your hands, you shouldn’t go starting anything.

You call holding hands “coziness?” Not! Coziness is kissing, and you’re not doing that. I hold hands with my grandmother.

Remember, guys: if you don’t memorize my “System,” you are doomed to repeat your mistakes.

©2006, DocLove Dot Com

Other Relationship Issues, Books

*     *     *
I present myself to you in a form suitable to the relationship I wish to achieve with you. - Luigi Pirandello

Doc Love is a talk show host, entertainment speaker, and coaches men in his seminars. For the past 30 years he has asked thousands of women, "Why do you stay with one man versus another?" Archives for 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001, and 2000.

DocLove will answer all of your romantic love questions from a man’s perspective. So set your ego aside, learn to laugh at yourself, and visit www.doclove.com or e-mail me at doclove@doclove.com or call me at 800.404.2644 and I will give you a snappy answer to your silly love question – one loaded with truth. You do what I say, and Miss Right will rob banks for you. When I get done with you, you will need more security than Julio Iglesias. However, to protect the guilty, I promise to not use your real name, or give it out. All questions will be answered, but only the ones of general interest printed. Please be specific and don’t ramble.

Contact Us | Disclaimer | Privacy Statement
Menstuff® Directory
Menstuff® is a registered trademark of Gordon Clay
©1996-2019, Gordon Clay