Dating Coaches & Pickup Coaches: Same Difference?

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mystery, pickup artist
College Humor helps bridge the gap between dating and just hooking up.

While "dating coach" is a relatively new appellation (not to mention occupation), the concept has been around since forever. From Cyrano's aid to Christian in Cyrano de Bergerac to Steve Martin's helpful hints to Rick Rossovich in Roxanne to Uma setting straight a clueless Janine Garofalo in The Truth About Cats And Dogs, romance guides (not marital aids) have been getting people together since year zero. It's probably why God invented older siblings.

But actually paying someone for help was once viewed as being a little too needy (however, paying someone to romance an unruly older sister has been just as popular in Shakespeare's day with Taming Of The Shrew as it was in Heath Ledger's day with 10 Things I Hate About You). But, just like online dating is no longer viewed as something to be ashamed of*, needing a little bit of help in the love department is not a hair shirt to wear (or cross to bear), it's becoming the norm. It's way easier to get toasted on blackberry brandy as an undergrad and marry some dude (or chick) than it is to find someone worthwhile when you're grown folk (especially for women, especially in big cities). So, you attend seminars, dating boot camps and pay for one-on-one sessions (like with Matt Titus and Tamsen Fadal).

 

But dudes still feel a little goofy about asking for/ paying professional dating help (note: dudes, because we like technology and convenience, were always far less weird about online dating and are fans of Craigslist for some reason). A dating boot camp for dudes (playas!) just doesn't seem like it would be successful (run it up the flag pole, give it a floor test, workshop it). But if the promise was to teach a guy how to score with hot chicks, then things are a little different. Neil Strauss, Frank TJ Mackey and Mystery know how to move their product: sex.

While most men dig having someone wrapped up in a long-term, semi-binding deal and most chicks dig boning (and not always with someone they care about), we've been programmed (thanks, God / evolution) or conditioned (thanks, mom & dad / TV) to use the promise of one to get the other. Maybe lonely men should go see pickup artists who are really dating coaches and lonely women should see dating coaches who are really pickup artists and see what that does for them. Everyone should be on the same page is all.

 
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