In Memoriam

RIP, The Neg, 2005-2014

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pickup obit

With the 2005 publication of Neil Strauss’s pickup bible, The Game, the neg was born, and all across America, aspiring pickup artists used backhanded compliments to get with hot ladies at bars. “Nice nails,” gentleman said to women they’d just met. “Are they real?” And the ladies, they responded. Or at least, enough of them responded to make Strauss a best-selling author.

But the New York Times has called it and so it is true: the neg is dead. According to “social development coach” Anthony Recenello, profiled in this weekend’s paper, it is no longer appropriate to insult women we find attractive in the hopes that we will wreck their confidence enough to make them sleep with us. It is 2014. We are earnest now. In these, the late Obama years, we are no longer the conquerors we once were. “I’m not about that at all,” Recenello says. “That stuff, like the neg, is outdated.”

And so we must save our commentary for people we know, or strangers on the internet. In the new world pickup order, we mingle meditatively. We make eye contact. We tilt our heads, in accordance with Recenello’s guidance. It is a posture that says “‘I know you have something great inside of you, and I want it to come out. I’m ready for it and I’m waiting for it.'” We are ourselves now. We do not worry about rejection; worrying about rejection is for the weak. We are vulnerable. We are present.

And so the neg goes the way of the microwave oven, and the IKEA Expedit shelving unit. Our heads are tilted now. Our eyes our open. A new and brighter era dawns. And if we are having trouble adapting to these new and respectful modern times, Recenello is there to help. $400 for the first month, $1,000 after that.