Thursday, 16 May 2019

Men going out solo: the pros and cons


“The amount of company someone attains isn’t necessarily a reflection of popularity.
It is more often a symbol of low-confidence and inhibition.”


Men’s, and women’s, friendships with the same gender fragment in number, solidarity, loyalty and reliability as they get older.  There may be a small percentage of people who claim the opposite, but most honest people will agree with me.  Time is precious to everyone, but over time you simply have less time to dedicate to others outside.  This even includes your loved ones.  You could argue that the diminishment of disposable time as we become older causes us to also be more selfish, and the two factors often go hand in hand.

This isn’t so much a criticism to anyone as much as an observation and acceptance of reality.  I class myself as one of the most loyal and reliable folk out there, but even I would put my hand on heart and confess to becoming far more selfish as each year has passed by, although a large part may be the consequence of being a cancer survivor, in conjunction with possessing less free time due to work commitments and progression.  Pure and simple, a rude awakening forces a person to be more selfish and evaluate who actually gives a crap about you and who wouldn’t piss on you if on fire when they walked past.  When the evaluation has been actioned, you distribute your time out accordingly. 

Only the other night, a few of us had arranged to go out for few drinks and catch up.  We only tend to do this every couple of months at best.  I’d informed all the other men of this date at least six weeks prior, and they all agreed it was a firm arrangement.  Two weeks prior to the night, I texted a reminder.  One of them backed out as he had to babysit his little boy (not sure what his fat ass wife was doing, but that’s another story).  No problem I thought, although it did make me wonder when he would have informed me had I not prompted.  A day before the night, another one started to have reservations, and he never text me one way or the other the next day.  The final man, on the morning of the event day, claimed he had a dodgy tummy and couldn’t make it.  Maybe he was telling the truth, although I know for a fact all was fine the day before when he ventured on an eight-hour walk. 

At the risk of contradicting myself, it is a fair argument that we are just as selfish when in our peak lifespan of going out – between 18 to 21.  As a younger mind is more self-centred in terms of thinking the world will accommodate our needs and all else is irrelevant, there will be many young people letting others down without an ounce of remorse.  The difference is at that age the social group is much larger, and one or two dropping out has little, or less, consequence on your overall arrangement.  The show goes on, with just a couple less faces to see.

Fast forward five or ten years, and a couple of people dropping out on short notice is pretty much wiping out your plan.  When it happens on an isolated occasion you can cut your losses and put it down to one of those things, but when it gets to the stage when you are half expecting the same old excuses, you start to wonder what’s the point. 


The decision to go out alone

Whether through travelling or working away, I’ve probably gone to bars and restaurants alone hundreds of times.  Whilst I totally commend anyone who cares little for no company in these scenarios, for the purpose of this post I’m discounting both.  This disregarding is only because, to the wider audience, contemplating going out alone to bars and clubs in someone’s local town or city is far more relevant.

Although I’m a person who cares next to nothing about what people think of me, or little about the consequences life throws at me, I still have never gone out alone in my home city of Derby.  I’m a great believer that when taking risks, the reward needs to outweigh the possible results, and as I will allude to below, too many people know me in Derby.  For this reason, last year I went out in the neighbouring city of Nottingham (which is a more vibrant city and has a considerably greater number and percentage of physically attractive women).

This didn’t come without consideration baggage too.  Although not close to the magnitude of Derby, I gradually over the years started to know more people in Nottingham.  I have been involved with more than a few women on a casual basis who live in the city or surrounding area.  But in view of the above explanation with regards to unreliable male friends, it came to a point of natural progression to venture out solo in primary objectives to meet sought after and quality women. 

All this came with mixed fortunes.  I extend on this below:

Advantages 1: You write your own script

One of the big advantages is, in attempt to meet women who strike your eye, you are the master of your own destiny.  When in male groups, some of the others may desire to go to bars you know class women do not locate.  When in a bar, one man may feel more at ease standing nearer more attainable (hence uglier) women than hot female counterparts.  When going out alone, you go and stand where you like.  This saves valuable time and money on wasted locations.

Advantage 2: Leave a venue straight away

As any astute man will tell you, a social or working venue that has a high ratio of men to women is a complete waste of time.  Any half-decent woman receiving attention from desperate men will think she is a level or two above what the mirror tells us.  This makes it twice as hard to gain positive receptiveness from her in comparison to an evenly matched ratio.  When out alone, unlike in a group where the usual decision is to stay on for a drink, you can instantly leave the place.

Advantage 3: Low calibre male friends not being there

Don’t get me wrong, a large part of going out is to catch up with mates and have a laugh.  Nevertheless, any honest man will also concede that, and especially if single, he will be on the lookout for suitable one-night stands, short term flings, or a potential girlfriend.  In the sheer law of averages in life, the reality is a high percentage of your friends will not be confident around women, have very little ability to navigate a conversation around women, and have poor body language and demeanour to suit.  This can, on more than a few occasions, detract rather than attract women.  When alone, you don’t have the hassle of carrying them.  Similarly, if you are on the hunt for a one-nighter yet your friends look and dress older than you, women can’t predict your age as accurately. 

Advantage 4: Portrayed Confidence / Mystique

Women are uncontrollably drawn towards an air of confidence a man can portray.  They are also ignited to a level of mystique – trying to work out what he is about.  A lonesome man standing in a bar, not acting in a timid or shameful way, gives off both offerings.  It’s strange because like me back then, I’d expect there are many late teenage and early 20’s men who think women are attracted to men who hang around in large numbered male groups.  The problem is, this is basically a man who is acting like a woman – with the “safety in numbers” mentality.  It is never a bad time to remind yourself that what a woman feels comfortable in acting out herself, she is unattracted to a man replicating it in the gender opposing way.


Disadvantage 1: Women’s interpreting you are a loner

We live in a world where women require social proof more than ever before, and without the luxury to explain reasons to your sole outing, a decent percentage of women will automatically interpret a man standing alone as a loner.  Such is the female mind that is petrified of any negative the world sees upon her, many women will not entertain getting to know a man who she thinks has no friends.  It’s important to have a good reason ahead of you regarding being alone, no matter how objective or economical to the truth it may be.

Disadvantage 2: Unable to exploit charisma easily

Irrespective to the level of your extroverted or introverted male friends, the big positive in being with male company is the luxury to exploit strong body language, verbal confidence, and listening skills. When a woman is analysing a man interacting with his male buddy, effectively she is weighing up how he would interact with her.  When alone, naturally this is not possible.  Even if you pick up conversation with an unknown group, the level you can positively expose your character is limited due to not having the common ground or talking topics.

Disadvantage 3: Women construing you as a poor socializer

As an add on to 1), once more many women will have concerns you are not someone who has high tolerance with others.  They may think you are a social loser at worst, or someone who falls out easily with others at best.  Again, women are always assessing a man on far more than his looks, and the thought he may be someone who can’t get on with her friends and family may enforce her to dismiss any of your advances.

Disadvantage 4: Assumption you are an extreme player

Some women love players, and they will go out of there way to be with men who they perceive to be this way.  At the end of the day, what sought after woman doesn’t desire to be with a man who is experienced with the female population.  However, and if you are a very good-looking man, if alone, many women will automatically tar you into a bracket of a man who is just out to get laid.  In the world of big female egos, a large percentage of women will dismiss this man in favour of a safer, even if more boring, male suitor. 


A Final Thought

One thing I have learned, and this may or may not apply to other men, is that it is harder for me to motivate myself to get ready and go out when knowing I’m flying solo.  Although I’m totally adversarial to the follower mentality, I guess I do like immediate company, usually in smaller groups, to warm me up.  If I haven’t got this enthusiasm in the first place, I find it hard to gather up momentum as the minutes tick by.  This is all more relevant in colder months.

Nevertheless, this as to be balanced out with the inevitable unreliability of male friends, therefore I’m a firm believer in back up plans.  With all this in mind, I’d conclude as saying going out alone can and does work to your advantage when in the right frame of mind, yet it works against you when feeling half-hearted.  Likewise, going out with company is a safer bet with greater margins.  So in essence, going out alone is high reward versus high risk.

Q-tip:
Sometimes you can feel like the world is watching you when venturing out alone.  You need to accept you may be the only person in the room doing so.  Over time and experience though, this feeling isn’t so irritable or conscious, especially if you can manifest a mind of outcome independence and not giving a shit what people generally think of you.  The harder task is eliminating your inner thoughts of what women are thinking about you in absence of any company.

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