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The Valentine's Pick-Up Guide, 2009 Edition
Don Jawan

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February 13, 2009

So, it's Valentine's and all that.

And pink is in the air, though this year we're all talking more about underwear in the mail and less about candy hearts, which signals a marked improvement in the universe as we've known it.

Once again, I've been yanked out of relative obscurity to write about this day, and how you, my physically and emotionally driven brethren, could possibly make use of all the oestrogen in the air and try and get some home with you.

So in keeping with the Pink Chaddi Campaign -- which has all the power to change male lives forever -- here's a simple gameplan. Enjoy.

1. Hit the pubs early

Sirs, every self-respecting young woman in the country is planning to gather at the pubs for solidarity. It's a nationwide ladies' night; the laudably diametrical opposite of a dry day. One look online would inform you that women everywhere are planning marches to the pubs to, essentially, give the moral police the finger.

What you need to remember about the situation, buddy o' mine, is the fact that said finger -- and a few more of its ilk -- are what you need to type digits into a keypad and give you a phone number. Exploit the masses, Luke, the force of the numbers is with you. Here we're talking swarms of women, a significant percentage of whom don't even usually come to pubs.

You are at the motherlode. Come in early, get a good vantage point. Sit back, grab a cold one, and wait for them to trickle in. Ahh.

2. Use the silent, disinterested approach

Odds are, good buddy, you're outnumbered. Yip, as they say, ee.

There are quite likely more women in the joint than men, and so you sit back and take your own sweet time choosing. And while just being there doesn't mean you won't strike out, remember it's easy enough to fall, dust yourself off, and head in the direction of your next target -- making sure you aren't in immediate proximity to the one who just shut you down. There's nothing quite as devastating to your chances as another girl snickering knowingly when you try and make your move.

And speaking of making your move, do us all a favour and leave your pick-up clunkers at home. Sit back and look thoughtful, and just remember to whirl your barstool around every so often, whenever there is a loud trill of 'whoo's and applause, and raise your glass: it's a group of girls each poorer by at least one pair of rosy innerwear, and they're toasting the day. Join 'em, and not just in a show of solidarity -- join 'em because it's a day you should be grateful for.

3. Make them buy you a drink

I'd never steer you toward complacency, but this is a night we as a gender have pretty much earned the right to sit back. This is a bunch of (justifiably) agitated ladies fighting for their right to party, and we're all for that, aren't we?

So on a night when they want to raise their hands for equality, who are we to reach for the cheque? Find a target, grin, make unmistakable eye-contact, and after a few glances, stare at your whiskey glass and sip it slow. Let them come to you.

And after the early lines break through and dialogue has commenced, breeze through your opening conversational gambits and then, BS-lessly lay your cards on the table. 'So, would you like to buy me a drink?', you ask, and at this stage, throw in a disarming laugh if -- and only if -- you can handle it. Else just smile and be charming but be firm about them buying the first drink.

All I can say from past experience is that women like to get some value for their dollar, some bang for their buck.

--

Good luck, lads, and may your Valentine's Night be most prolific.

Just one word of caution: Don't pursue. Not on a night when women are all pubbed up and ready to gang up on men. Just cause the day's historically noteworthy doesn't mean it should end with a Massacre.

Now fly.

Illustration: Dominic Xavier

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