To Hit Attraction Class 0

There is a connection between the sportsball and RPG surveys, and the law of female attraction. I titled it as The First Law, but the respect of men[1] is so important to attracting females that a man could consider it the only factor and still improve his available pool of women in ways which he could not by focusing on his other attributes.

Sportsball–particularly team versions of sportsball–teach a man how to operate in a social performance context. That’s obvious. But it also teaches him the importance of respecting his teammates. It also confers on him some of the overall respect given to the team. That respect is not zero-sum.[2] A quarterback does not get 80% of the respect while the other 20% is divided among the other players. The distribution of respect is not equal either: Each player does not get the same amount of the team’s overall respect. I could describe the distribution of respect in a few different ways. Keep in mind this is to describe a dynamic; not to define it.

Imagine a simple 1-10 scale of respect. Let’s further imagine a football team with an overall respect (GR) of 8. The quarterback is conferred a personal respect (PR) of 4 when viewed in isolation, e.g., walking around in a crowd while no one has any idea who he is. If he is recognized as the quarterback though–because of the effect of being on a team with a respect of 8–he gets 5 additional points for a total of 9 in situations where he is known as the quarterback of the football team.

A lineman gets a similar kind of boost, but lesser, and he also starts off further down the scale. Most linemen are fat because it helps them do their job. He starts at a personal respect of 2. He’s on the team, but he’s not as integral as the quarterback so only 3 points of the team’s overall respect are conferred upon him for a total of 5 in situations where he is recognized as a member of the football team. Even so–and this is the point–the fat, known lineman’s rating of 5 is more than twice as good as 2, and is even better than the fit, unknown quarterback’s rating of 4.

RPG groups function in the same way, only with lower numbers. You can learn social dynamics in a RPG group even though the social aptitude of the people is likely to start at less. As one YouTuber put it: “D&D is the most fun you can have with your brain.” There is no end to the skills and knowledge which can be applied to a RPG; writing, drawing, tactics, strategy, acting, history, conflict resolution, math, abstract thinking… And like sportsball, RPGs are a social performance activity, and even though the activity itself is done by “dweebs“, there are residual respect effects conveyed upon members of the group if the members of the group known are known as a group; even if the group’s specific activity is hidden… a secret which I might recommend in the case of RPGs.

You aren’t in control of what is cool, but even activities which are less cool can provide benefits. Five dudes hanging out to discuss their RPG is only going to attract a few nerdy girls, but it attracts girls at all it’s because there is a group. (Yes, there are girls out there who want to invade RPG groups. If you don’t like sports: Marry one of those.) And the gamemaster is going to get a greater share of the overall respect (PR 1 + GR 2) than a player (PR 1 + GR 1). A lone guy reading a RPG book or planning a campaign isn’t going to attract even one girl; hardly ever, because he remains a 1. As dorky as RPGs might be, 2 is twice as good as 1.

My example answers to the surveys were my actual answers. I played baseball (I was good.) and basketball (I was terrible.), medaled gold and bronze on the Academic Decathlon team, and played RPGs at least once every two weeks with my friends…and we never–ever!–told anyone–especially girls!–that we played D&D.

We all played sports and went to parties and absolutely ruled the sand volleyball courts at the park. We never discussed D&D at school. We were not the trench-coat-n-fedora guy muttering over a rulebook in the cafeteria during lunch.

The main thing is we were seen as a team of friends who respected each other and that group dynamic attracted girls. At the same time: We didn’t shoot our own wheels off by telling the unprivileged about our nerdy activities. (I didn’t talk about Aca-Dec much, either.) Later, as girls became girlfriends only then would we nonchalantly let it be known in an organic situation. “Hey babe. Yeah, I can’t go tonight. Me and some guys are going to hang out, watch a movie, and maybe play some D&D.” 

[1] I prefer respect to status because the latter has a rhetorical effect in that it conjures up rankings in a way that can mislead. A commissioned officer has more status than a noncommissioned officer, but he doesn’t necessarily have more respect. A king has ultimate status in the kingdom, but a respected general can usurp him.

[2] Professional sports as practiced in the the US perverts team sports into something close to a zero-sum game because of the amount of money involved, and because of formal sports journalism.



11 thoughts on “To Hit Attraction Class 0

  1. I will note this works for any large group, really. The number of romantic relationships -yes, boy-girl romantic relationships- within a high school theatre group is very high.

  2. @MtC

    I will note this works for any large group, really.

    Yes, exactly. I picked sports and RPGs because the former is the heights of cool, and the latter is the depths of dork.

  3. The lack of response to this post bums me out for two reasons.

    1) No one commented on the title. That was some good work.
    2) More seriously: A lot of the guys in the Men’s Sphere would do much better if they paid attention to this.

  4. I’ve read the last couple but have a hard time commenting when on my phone. This series has been really good…and I’ll go back and comment.

    Yes social groups are key, which is exactly _why_ the D&D folks don’t do as well. They are generally introverts and therefore have a harder time maintaining social standing. That, and generally brawn is better for general fitness than excess intellect. Something that the smart guys amongst us do well to remember. I being one. Stopping my own envy of strength in late HS was a giant step forward for me as a human being.

  5. @ Cane

    “A commissioned officer has more status than a noncommissioned officer, but he doesn’t necessarily have more respect.”

    Dude, why you gotta rub it in?

  6. “(Yes, there are girls out there who want to invade RPG groups. If you don’t like sports: Marry one of those.)”

    Marry her, but don’t let her invade your RPG group.

  7. I had been wondering how those surveys were going to pan out. Only just now did I find this post, which I guess I missed.

    It’s good stuff. We need to write more about it. I had a bit of blogorrhea this morning while replying to Deti, and the concept I kept coming back to in my head was respect as the male lifeblood.

  8. This also explains a good portion of why especially smart men don’t do well.

    1. Others can’t really teach them anything (either he already knows it or they don’t, or at least can’t explain it without contradicting themselves, even if they’re right), so he has no particular reason to respect them.
    2. He doesn’t receive the respect he feels is his due for knowing/learning X. But part of the point of being smart is knowing what to value—and specifically, knowing to value some things differently than most. Which means that to most people he just appears to know a bunch of useless stuff. Their failure to respect him just proves to him that they are even less worthy of respect. He might be kind, but he won’t respect them. Eventually he grows resentful seeing those he doesn’t respect do better in X arena.

    This is autobiographical, if it’s not already painfully obvious.

    Fortunately, before the reader vomits at the self-pity, I will say: I am glad to be shown the error of my ways this day. It’s a lot easier to say (and mean) “Forgive them, they know not what they do” and adapt when they’re not literally crucifying you.

    This essay may be of interest:

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