First of all, I would like to thank Cliff and all of the speakers who gave generously of their time and knowledge in helping to expand the consciousness of others in the Seduction Community. Below you will find my review of the speakers that I personally saw (which was the bulk of them). There were certain speakers I did not get a chance to see and hear for various reasons (usually because I was tied up in private conversation outside the ballroom with one of the previous speakers and in some cases slept in due to very long nights).
For the most part, the information that was dispersed in Montreal was very useful. I must say I came back to Philadelphia a changed person. This convention was my a-ha moment. The camaraderie created throughout this event will hopefully last a lifetime.
The following is a breakdown speaker by speaker (without giving away the entire contents of their speeches) highlighting some of their more progressive remarks. I will give them stars from 1-10 based on what I got out of their speeches; 1 being the lowest and 10 being the highest. Also please note, all of the opinions below are my own personal opinions, so other people may have a different assessment of what they heard.
Michael “The Dating Wizard”
A self admitted nerd, Michael truly conveyed that he is comfortable in his own skin. He shared how he uses his charismatic personality to pick up women and how Superior Intrinsic Value (how a woman can feel your value as a man). He believes these traits are conveyed by body language, humor, and tonality. Michael told the group, “If you are not making a girl feel emotional, then you are not making an impact in her life.” He also stated that women want a cool guy in their life because it validates them (much like how men want a hot girl on their arm).
One of his better suggestions is to get rid of crappy music in your library and only listen to music that empowers you and gets you into a happy and positive state of mind. He would rather go out with positive people with no skills (when sarging for women) than a people with high skill levels who let off a negative vibe.
In closing he added the valuable advice of, “If a girl makes you feel bad, just forget her and move on.”
6.0 stars out of 10
Carlos showed up at the convention after a brief visit with Shaolin monks in China. Xuma preaches a sensitive alpha male style and relates a lot of pick up to the martial arts (as do a few other well known PUA’s within the community).
One of the more insightful things Carlos said during his speech was, “Everyone in this room would love to present a girl with a lottery ticket for a million dollars.”
He then went on to say, “You are her lottery ticket.”
By this I believe Carlos was trying to get across that as men should view ourselves as the prize; their lottery ticket. You can be the good fortune that could come into their lives. So when approaching a girl, if she’s not interested in you as her lottery ticket; it’s her loss.
He used lots of eastern philosophical metaphors and basically goes through life with the attitude that anytime anything bad happens he says, “That’s Great…”
Carlos also preaches the idea that when approaching a woman that one should use a “real” opener. By this he means if you’re going to use an opener, use something that means something to you. Too many guys run around using canned openers they read off the Internet. He suggests that you come up with questions/openers that you actually are interested in. One of his “real openers” that he uses when approaching women is the following, “Why do you think guys are so nervous about approaching women?”
Carlos likes to use a lot of motivational phrases, ideas, and thoughts when it comes to pickup and in life. In closing, one of his more memorable thoughts he shared was, “Successful people do what unsuccessful people don’t want to do. Winning is everything, but it doesn’t have to mean someone else is losing. Anything worth doing in life won’t be easy.”
7.5 stars out of 10
My first impression of Nige when he took the stage was, “Wow, this guy looks like Jude Law.” He was probably the best looking guy to take front and center at the Convention. When Nige got up and spoke most people took notice. From his immaculate physical presentation (his style), his warm smile, and his Australian accent; this guy demonstrated his great outer game. Nige’s message is that a man has 3 main objectives when it comes to meeting women. He said, “You need to develop a look, a personality, and a body.”
To change his look he peroxides his hair and got his tongue pierced. Nige also spoke of having the mindset of when you go out that you need to think you already have a girlfriend, which basically translates into the, “I don’t give a shit attitude.” This women will find very attractive.
He reviewed a few openers, logistical locations in bars/clubs to hang in, and the best time to pull a girl out of a bar. He also went over the idea of having a post sex interview with a girl. This Australian PUA stresses the importance of finding out from a girl why she decided to sleep with you after you do the deed. This helps him in future conquests.
Overall it appears that this very up and coming dating coach from down under, has his shit together and breaks down the game in a very simple and easy to understand format.
7.5 stars out of 10
An expert marketer and master promoter, Grant discussed how the idea of meeting women off the Internet made absolute sense. Adams proclaimed that 73% of single people in America have or are doing on-line dating, so if you as a single man haven’t tried it, you’re missing out on a great opportunity.
He explained how through personal profiles and emails someone can actually make a woman desire sleeping with you before she has even met you face to face. He then went on to explain the dos and don’ts of on-line dating. Choosing the proper pictures, using the right verbiage and language on-line could entice a woman to choose you over 100’s of other men writing her. He also explained how having the proper screen name can separate you from the rest of the crowd.
His presentation did come off a little like a slick infomercial, but overall Grant’s presentation was an overall asset to the conference.
8.0 stars out of 10
Group Panel with Bad Boy, Travis, Lance Mason, and DJ – Developing and Maintaining Multiple Long Term Relationships
This was an interesting discussion that surely brought some value to the Convention. DJ was a last minute replacement for Zan (who would speak at a later time over the weekend). Lance quickly took the lead and explained that he currently had one committed long term relationship, but that he felt all men should go through at least a six month period in their life where they would date several different women just from the sheer aspect of training yourself not to be so needy towards one woman. He then went on to state that when dating several women at the same time, a guy will be able to break each woman down and figure out what he wants and doesn’t want from a woman.
Badboy spoke up and explained that when you meet a girl and start a relationship (dating) that within the first month you must paint the whole image of the relationship and make sure not to see her more than once a week (a common belief shared by many PUA’s). He then stated that there were two ways of thinking in MLTR’s. One is that you can lie and deny you’re dating anyone else or you can just be honest with her and tell her you are seeing other girls. Both are a pain in the ass, yet both styles can work.
Lance interjected with a conflicting view to Badboy’s, stating that if you tell her you’re dating other girls (i.e. sleeping with them), the girl will feel like a slut. So to counter all of this you must just keep things casual (which involves time lapses in seeing her) so she doesn’t get it into her mind that you and her are seriously dating.
DJ went on to state that you shouldn’t try to set up a relationship, but to set up your life which will then draw girls into it. If you’re busy living, that will be communicated and that you will not have to force the frame. The frame will happen.
Travis didn’t get to speak too much as Lance and Badboy did most of the talking. However, his major statement of contribution was that instead of girls shit testing you, you should make them pass your tests (make them jump through your hoops).
Overall a pretty interesting and impressive discussion.
7.5 stars out of 10
Cameron “The ONE” Teone
This L.A. based PUA had a lot to say and wanted to expand upon his speech he gave at the Cliff’s List Convention in 2005 (the topic being personal attributes). Cameron stated that if you are a normal cool guy, that 80% of your game is internal and 20% external. He went on to say that if you want to get and keep a girl, you must maintain attraction and rapport.
Cameron then spoke about what levels of rapport you need with a woman based on what type of girl she is. For instance, is she a party girl? An intellectual? A good girl?
He also spent some time touching on internal dialogue and how you need to stop having this internal nervous chatter. This will only produce feelings of nervousness within a woman. Cameron also encouraged the audience to stop analyzing everything.
He closed out his lecture by making analogies to professional athletes and what they do to overcome adversity. Cameron stated that you should focus on the positive. What happens if I get a girl’s phone number (you must think that it’s going to be a great time)? He suggested that you talk to everyone. One must socialize so that when you see a hot girl, there’s no pressure. It becomes a function of being socially active.
7.5 stars out of 10
Will H with Jacque Werth
Two very interesting men from very different demographics. Will has been involved in the PUA community for several years. A former NYC bouncer, he became well known through the DYD programs. He is the only “well known African-American PUA” in the world. Jacque comes from a business background; always having success with women and in the world of Sales. This man (I’d guess he’s in his mid to late 60’s) brings his worldliness and his self-proclaimed success with women over several years. Mr. Werth brings a very pleasant and sincere personality to the table.
Will reviewed proper ways of leaving messages and text messages with girls whose numbers you’ve accumulated. He also went into some proper procedures that wingmen should employ (some of which I was able to use right away with wonderful success). Will talked about how he doesn’t date (i.e. spend very much money on women) and how he is able to just get them to come over and sleep with him. Very impressive.
Jacque followed Will and spoke about his past history and how he became successful with women. Jacque and Will are in the process of formulating a company called High Probability Dating that incorporates Will’s techniques with the techniques employed by Jacque’s business programs.
7.0 stars out of 10
Steve P, Johnny Soporno, and Zan
I’m not really sure what the purpose of this discussion was supposed to be, but I was able to garner a lot of a lot of fantastic information from these three more experienced and mature ladies men. Johnny Soporno opened up this panel discussion by stating that many women will say to a guy, “You’re not my type.”
In turn you can ask her, “How many people in the world do you know actually settled down with their type and they are happy?”
To me this was a very powerful statement. It sure makes you think. He then went on to claim that when he sees a woman that he puts them in 3 categories.
I wouldn’t fuck them.
I might fuck them.
I would fuck them.
As they talked about so many things, I’ve listed a few other key statements that really rang true to me.
“We make long term promises on short term feelings.”
“Be key to the relationship of what you want, by being honest.”
“The secret to meeting women is that you never have to be the seller. Walk in, knowing that it’s someone you would want to be with.”
There were so many other powerful things said, my hand couldn’t write fast enough. These guys were simply awesome!
9.5 stars out of 10
Brian, a former self-proclaimed multi-millionaire who has been to hell and back, gave what equated to an inspirational pep talk. He claims to have to have an ego the size of Texas, but if there was anyone there this weekend that could be considered the PUA version of Tony Robbins, Brian would fit the bill. He talked about going out by himself and talking to everyone he met. “The intent behind the interaction will make you or break you,” he claimed.
Brian went into detail about how to create rapport and accessing the eye movements of your partner in an interaction to gage their attraction/interest. He then went into specifics of anchoring how this technique can build confidence.
He’s a big believer in NLP and how reframing situations can help you see the world from a different perspective. His major focus in life is on being an excellent human being and that he can’t control how other people feel about him. He did note though that he does care about other people’s feelings.
Overall, Brian’s morsels of wisdom related to life, relationships, health, wealth, and happiness. I personally can see how his attitude about daily life interaction can help one’s approach in pickup.
7.5 stars out of 10
One of the more polished and entertaining speakers at the convention, Bart Baggett brings a skill set in handwriting analysis (he’s also an expert in NLP) that can help even the most advanced PUA. He explained that most of his clients are women, but this skill can be a tremendous asset when it comes to pick up.
Bart explained some of the more important letters and qualifiers in a person’s handwriting to discover whether you may even want to have anything to do with them. Imagine if you could analyze a woman’s handwriting in a bar and realize that she’s most likely to turn out psycho or if she’s either closed off (i.e. prude) or most open to going home on the first night you meet her.
Baggett was able to talk about a serious topic in a light and funny manner. One of his better stories involved how his own father (who is in his late 60’s) was able to pick up more girls in a restaurant in an unplanned event where he went up against a well known pickup pioneer.
Listening to Bart was pure entertainment and quite an educational experience.
9.0 stars out of 10
Decker and Bryan
These two guys from San Francisco spoke about their program that they hope will take pickup to a new and elevated level. They compared men doing pickup to women putting on makeup. Their coaching focuses on a more natural inner game and fixing this problem first. This way you don’t shut down your body and brain when trying to meet a woman.
They are one of the first pickup coaching companies to employ women who also work as dating coaches and giving men on the spot analysis to help them find the woman of their dreams. Decker and Bryan preach how you need to develop the inner belief that, “I don’t need shit from women. I’m bringing something to their life.”
Of course they also spoke of developing yourself as a person so you can back up these thought patterns. It seemed to me that they focus on a lot of NLP/hypnosis type of exercise and help men develop their inner game.
This was a nice refreshing spiritual approach to pickup as opposed to some of the more common techniques that are often taught. Some of the exercises they use to employ these methods seem a bit freaky on the surface, but then again if you can become congruent with these ideas (you actually believe what you’re doing), then I can see how they could work.
Note – one of my good friends who was part of my crew that came to Montreal worked with these guys in a free private workshop and it appeared that he had a major life change (at least for the first 24 hours after working with them). I must say he came back a much cooler guy.
8.0 stars out of 10
At first glance, DJ is physically the average American man in his 30’s. He does not stand out in a crowd as above average or below average in looks. However, when he opens his mouth, a vast amount knowledge and intelligence is dispensed. DJ, definitely knows how to hold your attention.
He talked about a more holistic approach to pickup. Interestingly enough, he’s worked with one of the Pickup community’s master showman, Mystery. DJ’s claim to fame is story telling. He spoke about how you are who you are within your deep inner core. Who you are is how you go out and present yourself (at least to others).
An interesting comment he made (which rings true as many PUA’s are very analytical and highly intelligent), he said, “What if too much focus is based on the result that the focus negates the results?” Definitely something to think about.
Some of the other points DJ spoke about was approach anxiety, AMOG’ing (don’t AMOG your boss), ways to spend time with yourself, self worth, building your own network, and making a conscious decision to be the best man you can be.
8.0 stars out of 10
Lance didn’t fail to disappoint. He runs one of the top PUA boot camp companies in the United States. His star has been rapidly rising over the past few years. This may have something to do with the fact that he actually comes off as a cool guy. The first part of his speech was about confidence. Lance claims that this is conveyed 100% by body language (which makes sense since a lot of their programs focus on this aspect of the game).
He spoke about how the really good pickups do not look like pickups to an outside observer. Lance then spoke about “Naturals.” He explained that naturals are always on through PERFECT MECHANISMS. This can not be faked.
Mason went onto explain that when you learn a new skill set that you must practice it. Otherwise you take it in and there’s a good chance it will be forgotten.
It was nice touch that he introduced some of his top instructors and some guys that he was giving a free mini-boot camp to in Montreal. If there was any downside to his presentation, it did seem like a mini-infomercial. Otherwise, most of what he spoke about was very valuable.
8.0 stars out of 10
The epitome of the alpha male, this PUA instructor from Croatia has seen the battlefield (literally, he was shot in the head and appeared to be partially paralyzed). Despite all of the hardships life has brought him, it doesn’t appear that any of this has hindered his success with women.
He started out by stating that everybody has attraction for something. Every girl is special, but they have more in common than differences. He stated that most women desire the same general qualities in men. For example, they like a guy who:
Is a challenge
Knows what he wants
Has a sense of humor
Is a bit sexual
Is not afraid to show desire
Badboy’s view on being dominant is being the leader in gaming and in life. This will take you to new heights. He segued his way into discussion about pickup and his thoughts that the less a woman had to do in a pickup situation, the more successful you will be. If you don’t use force, you won’t get resistance (then again you might not get anything). However he did go on to say that women find aggressive men to be a turn off, but a dominant man is a turn on. The man must lead throughout the seduction.
He continued to give out big morsels of wisdom. The Croatian PUA stated that 93% of communication is body language and the other 7% is verbal (which you would use your tonality and emotions to help project your intentions). Other points he got across included to never argue with a woman (it will get you nowhere). Every decision a girl makes is based on how she feels in that moment. He spoke of the 5 different emotions women feel.
Of all the important nuggets that Badboy generously dispersed, he told the audience, “Don’t blame anyone else for your life. You are the one who will design your life.”
I don’t know if his style of pickup is congruent with a lot of men, but he was one of the more informative speakers throughout the 3 day event and perhaps had one of the best understandings of the core thoughts of women.
9.0 stars out of 10
Probably the funniest and most colorful character to appear at the 2006 Cliff’s List Convention. He got up on stage and proclaimed, “Sex is for losers, it’s for people who don’t have anything to do.”
This would probably be a profound statement if made by anybody else, but those who know Jlaix by his reputation know that nothing that comes out of this guy’s mouth is that shocking. This RSD instructor is probably best known for being the shock jock of the community. Of course Jlaix did not disappoint when it came to making profound statements. He quickly delved into some of his monologues that he runs out in the field.
Despite his reputation as the badboy comedian of the PUA community, Jlaix spoke about a recent metamorphosis that he’s had in his life. Having spent the past several months in Spain, he decided to change his life around. He spoke of learning about new cultures, developing 3 new skills (every three months) such as dance lessons, language classes, stand up comedy, etc. This is for the purpose of adding value to life and giving value to others.
He covered so many territories when it comes to life and pickup that one could not be impressed by the vast knowledge and wisdom that Jlaix has garnered in his 30 years. He spoke of pushing oneself to take action. You should not aim for perfection, but for consistency. Other memorable quotes, “Return to center, move forward. Play to your strengths. Be different. Be unique.”
Although he seems (at least from my perspective) a little burnt out on the PUA community and pickup itself for the sake of picking up, he did say that what he enjoys best about working with aspiring PUA’s is that he loves to turn a guy into a cool social guy, the kind of guy that he’d like to hang out with.
That’s all one can ask for.
9.5 stars out of 10
This Canadian based psychologist spoke about the Art of Social Networking which more guys in the community could definitely benefit from. The main focus of his talk was the 10 Principles of Social Networking. Basically he shared some of the secrets in life to making friends so that if your goal is meeting a lot of women, very little pickup (traditional pickup skill sets that are taught within the community) are needed. Doc detailed these 10 skills in depth, but you’ll have to check out the DVD if you want to hear about them.
He closed out his speech by stating, “Do something with people rather than alone.” I got the feeling that Doc really loves people and helping others achieve their goals.
9.0 stars out of 10
Steve Celeste “Toecutter”
Steve is considered one of the pioneers in the PUA community. Although not one of the best public speakers out there, he is by far one of the most knowledgeable and opinionated guys in the community. He spoke about meeting girls in your social circle and turning them into romantic relationships. One of the more interesting things he stated was that people express their emotions and feelings on their face rather than verbally (meaning don’t necessarily listen to what a girl is saying, but actually observe her face as she says it).
Celeste told the audience to embrace a continuing interaction with a girl. He also stated that if a woman knows you’re not judging her sexuality, you’ll probably get a lot more out of her on that front (I can vouch for that). In closing, he encouraged the men in the audience to learn how to be playful and keep working on your flirting skills. If you can capture the essence of what he is claiming, you will have a lot more success with the opposite sex.
7.5 stars out of 10
Zan, a Vancouver based “Natural” is one of the long time members of the community. He is known for his pretty boy looks and his just overall likability. He discussed about how there really are no naturals, but that every guy that becomes good with women do so because they’ve really made an effort to work on this area of their lives.
The main focus of his speech was the 10 Traits that every guy who is good women must have (you’ll have to catch it on DVD – worth seeing again). He stated that you either have all of these traits or none of them.
One of the things besides Zan’s 10 Traits that he gave of value is the 90 Day plan. He stated that you should write down your goals for the next 90 days and want them as bad as breathing. Think about nothing else, but achieving these goals. Erase everything else that’s not part of it.
By the time Zan was done speaking, I even overheard a few guys in the foyer area saying that they were not gay, but if they were a woman, they’d want to date Zan.
That speaks volumes about this man.
9.0 stars out of 10
This rockstar-like PUA instructor from NYC closed out the convention. I’m not sure if it was planned, but Cliff saved the VERY BEST for last. He’s relatively new to the PUA community which is quite awesome in the respect that he brings so many fresh ideas to this “world.”
Actually, the threesome panel which featured Johnny Soporno and two of his girlfriends closed out the event. It seems like you missed it but it was a definite highlight which actually had Zan taking copious notes!
(Now back to the review of Brad P)
He went into depth about the notorious, “One Night Pull.” He spoke about processing early sets and how you should do several warm up sets to up your social calibration. You should open up 10-12sets so that you can be socially fine tuned. Brad went on to say that if a girl rejects you, it makes a great story to tell the next girl. How’s that for story telling? From his point of view about figuring out whether you and a girl are compatible, he’d rather find out quickly, rather than wasting time.
He spoke about the 3 types of social contracts (can’t wait to see the DVD’s to review this important aspect of the game). Basically a social contract is the reason a woman is out. Is she looking to be picked up, have a guy buy them drinks, or just out to hang with her girls? Brad delved into these reasons and how to figure it out quickly so you don’t waste your time.
Brad generously gave away his Loser Whatever song and several of his openers and attract material. I have to say I was able to use several of these right away to get some very solid results (yes, some did result in f-closes – Thanks Brad).
Later in the evening he generously donated his time and spoke free of charge to whoever wanted to show up (as he didn’t have enough time to go into everything that he wanted to cover during his allotted stage time). Some of the insights and techniques that he generously gave away would have been worth paying an additional charge.
I have to say that out of all the speakers at the convention, Brad was my favorite. This is despite the fact that he was the very last speaker and I was extremely tired. I was so inspired that I dragged myself to his seminar later in the evening.
9.7 stars out of 10
In closing, I’d like to thank Cliff for all the work he did to put this convention together and all the guys who came in and generously shared their vast wealth of knowledge. This was definitely a changing point in my life. I hope that one day I can give back, if even in a small way to the community that I’ve been able to take so much from.
You guys rock!
More Reviews of the Cliff’s List Convention 2006:
Schooled in the MM, Asian Playboy gave out a few nice pointers on opening, AMOG’ing, in-club escalation, and the interesting issue of race and PUA-dom. He stated that when a girl asks “what do you do?” she is actually asking “who are you?” and that your response must give her some information she will find attractive. For example, not just “I’m a computer programmer” but “I’m a computer programmer but in the winter I snowboard.”
He recommended taking some dance lessons and learning a few good moves to avoid being the “dancing monkey.” He explained his method for escalating to a hand job in the dance floor.
For the latter portions of his talk, he appeared to be answering questions written down on 3×5 cards, such as “Are white girls interested in Asian men?” and “How do you deal with a racist AMOG who says you have a small penis?” (Answer: “You know I’m flattered, but Club Gay is over there…”)
He spoke about how peacocking works but that it attracts shit-tests like crazy. He now opts for a single huge shiny belt buckle, partially hidden behind a half-tucked shirt. (“I have this because it points to my crotch.”) Funny, a friend of mine just wore a new huge shiny belt buckle out the other night…
7.5 stars out of 10
Dr. Paul’s cow-bell punctuated parody of some of the most popular PUA approaches out there was completely hilarious and had the audience in stitches. It was a delicious “meta-moment” and a reminder that some of this stuff can really seem bizarre on the outside.
He’s an actual licensed psychiatrist by his own claim, and he’s not Dr. Phil (he’s light years ahead of that chode, actually). He used his satire as a jumping off point into a fairly detailed discussion of what has been termed “deep inner game.” He spoke knowledgeably about the importance of boundaries, buttons, and blind spots as they relate to a conception of male maturity, which had a ring of truth. He stressed the importance of this inner game over gimmicky techniques (although in fairness, most of the apparently “gimmicky techniques” out there are accompanied by some fairly impressive inner game as well if you really pay attention).
He pointed towards a kind of grounded, ethical synthesis of game, and advocated a move from worshipping the “alpha” male to prizing the “omega” male. In order to understand what that means, you’ll have to purchase his material, at least some of which I know is available through his collaborative work with DYD.
8.5 stars out of 10
One of the pioneers of this field, David Shade has done a tremendous amount of work on the romantic/sexual side of the equation (“Romance is the socially acceptable term for sexuality” he stated).
He stressed the importance of the “it just happened” frame for women, and how romantic behaviors can be the key to its establishment. He talked about his techniques for getting from the napkin-folded-into-a-rose phase (he recommended learning how to do this and surprising her with it) to the radio-remote-controlled-vibrator-in-her-vagina-at-the-restaurant phase. He went over some deliciously nasty 9 ½-weeks-style scenarios to get into, both as a way of turning a woman on initially, and continuing the sparks in a long-term relationship.
Learning the techniques for really satisfying a woman is crucial, he stated, not only to give her great pleasure and get her addicted to you, but also to give yourself the unmistakable confidence that comes with knowing you can utterly rock her world. “Be careful who you do this to, though” he implored, since it can create stalkers!
8.5 stars out of 10
Pick up lines are not where you want to be thinking. Because inherent in the idea of a pick-up line is that you spit out your magic line, and then can cruise because it is magic. Like it somehow magically attracted her, and now you can just be yourself, and everything will be cool.
But the fact is that there is no magic pill. There is no magic smell that you can spray on your body, and suddenly everything will be fine. You have to make the deeper changes; to your self-esteem, to the way you flirt, to the way you make eye contact, to the way you run the interaction … all these things take work. Work on yourself, and work on how you interact.
But at the same time, when meeting people, you have the same conversation over and over. Now, if that conversation is “what do you do for a living” that is still a conversation you are having over and over.
There are people out there who are teaching men how to meet women who say that saying the same things over and over again (routines) is just a crutch. Just something you need to do until you are proficient at off-the-cuff conversation. But this is a fallacy.
Now, you could draw a tree chart of the possible conversations that are there. Just because you do not take the opportunity to have the conversation does not mean that it is not there. Like you could have the conversation that starts with “What do you do?”, but you leave that aside and go for another conversation. You could have that conversation again that starts with “I just broke up with my girl-friend…” but you leave it be, it is not a good conversation. You could do the one of hers that starts with “I have a boy-friend”, but you know where that one ends and you decide to leave that conversation alone.
It is like conversational topics are these things that are like paths that cattle have carved through some forest. To walk along the paths that already exist is easy, to carve a new one through virgin forest is a battle.
Now you have your paths through the forest that you have made. They may be good paths like “A friend of mine just got married in Las Vegas, what do you think of that?” or they could be bad paths that start with “The first girl I ever loved rejected me and I am still recovering …” Either way those are paths.
Now, unlike every other situation in your life, when you are meeting new women, you have no relationship with them. Like when you are speaking to a friend of 3 years, you can not recycle a conversation that you have already had, because this is a replay and no fun.
But with someone you just met, EVERYONE is recycling old conversations. Whether that is the “What do you do” conversation or “How many brothers and sisters do you have” conversation or the something that I like. Ask me about my accent, and BAM! she is on my thread. I know where this one goes, I have had it before. She says “You just want to sleep with me don’t you?”, and she thinks she knows where this one ends, but I have cut a path through the forest on this one that ends up well for me … “Ha! Look at you, you know what I can tell about you …” and I am off on my path.
So at the end of the day, meeting new people is a unique situation. Your parents go out and meet new people and they are having the “What do you do” conversation over and over, and answering it over and over. But they are not in meeting new people situations often, and not in a goal oriented way like meeting a potential partner.
So routines are not something you run away from. They are something you embrace. As long as you are having routines anyway (such as “What do you do”), you might as well have ones that are actually interesting.
These conversations are not something that you use as “crutches” while you are learning, but rather you are beating out new paths through the forest and finding new good ways through. And it is not like you will throw these things away when you are good and have high-self-esteem and have learned how to flirt, but rather that you will have explored the maze of paths really well and know where the forks in the road are. And if she wants to go along the path that starts with “Let’s Just Be Friends …” you know that there is a little trodden path that goes where you want it to go, rather than down the path she wants it to go, and hey presto!, you are using your conversations used before to further your cause.
So rather than running from rehearsed conversations, thinking that there is some “natural” way, understand that most conversations go along well beaten paths, and the well beaten paths are less interesting.
Embrace the conversations you have, and be prepared to have them again. I mean, how many times can you have that “what do you do” conversation and still be interested in taking your end of it? Why not go down the one that starts with “I saw an interesting article about women asking men to marry them in Nepal, and it is the practice there … I mean, how would you feel about that …”