Thursday, July 23, 2009

The Tragedy of the Commons

When should you give up and leave a bar, party, public pool, garage sale, church fundraiser, laundromat or local coffee shop if your goal is to meet a woman?

As outlined on this blog before, the answer to that question highly depends on your status.

The reason for this is that in all these settings no women would ever deviate from her "looking out for number one" strategy.

And that means, if there are guys plentiful, an alpha male can shine. The other men will literally become tools for the top guy in the scene. Each single one of them inevitably turns into mere proof of his uber-dominance. The more social underlings, the more glorious the reign of the guy who owns the attentional territory.

Thus, the less alpha you are the better you'll do without any other guys around (this seems intuitive).

An alpha guy, on the other hand, should avoid these situations and seek out settings with other men around in order to demonstrate his status (somewhat less intuitive).

There is one big exception, though, where this strategy will backfire:
And that's if there are too many males of (almost) equally high status.

This phenomenon has recently been demonstrated in water striders (from all things!). More specifically, for large groups of Aquarius remigis alpha males.

In this insect species, as in so many other cases across the animal kingdom, there is huge variation in the level of aggressiveness with which males approach the mating scene.

It all boils down to the good old "Hawk-Dove" dilemma. Researchers found that dove-ish nonaggressive beta male water striders do pretty well in terms of mating success - as long as they are among themselves.

But, as hyperaggressive males arrive on the scene, things change drastically.

Just as outlined above, the alphas will do well among the timid betas. The nice guys finish last.

Yet, as the number of hyperaggressive males increases, so does female resistance (think bitch shield late into the night at a crowded club). Ultimately, both types of males will suffer in their sexual success.

This situation is referred to as "The Tragedy of the Commons":

Multiple individuals acting independently in their own self-interest can ultimately destroy a shared limited resource

This situation can come about during social evolution with intense sexual conflict, since this situation favors individuals with aggressive mating strategies. But, as their genes start to predominate so does the "Sex, death and tragedy".

In its most extreme form, this can lead to complete destruction of the resource rivaled for. In the common lizard species Lacerta vivipara, for example, it has been observed that the Tragedy of the Commons evoked by male-heavy populations drives local populations to the edge of extinction (a classic example of "evolutionary suicide").

Is there a human parallel?

If you think about what happens at certain clubs with rightward skewed female-male ratios late into the night, it gets easy to make up a story.

Social status is relative, so even among alpha males, there will always be leaders and followers. Thus, the general rule above still applies.

Yet, even if there is a king among kings inside alpha-heavy clubs, this will not stop any of these experienced players from using aggressive (asshole) game on women. And while this is likely to go over well with women if there are few other (bad) boys around, the strategy might backfire under testosterone-soaking circumstances.

As women get increasingly approached (be it because of the effects of liquid courage or an influx of ladies men), so does their bitch shield. As more and more guys actually step up and openly admit sexual interest (by approaching girls), the supply-and-demand curve gets an illusory shift to the left. The hoops girls put out for interested guys to (not) jump through now go up exponentially as girl perceive their market value to increase.

There is a certain irony in what happens around the time of the last call:
The girls that still hang around in a bar or club among the horny hordes of drunk, needy guys are surely not there to enjoy the music or the company of their friends. Girls who stay that late into "obnoxious time" are there for one reason only: the fear of the empty apartment /
cold bed. Yet, I have hardly ever witnessed a successful approach-to-SNL at this late hour. The bitch shields are too high and the male approaches too watered down by neurotoxic substances for that to happen.

Bug, lizard or human: Parties with an overwhelming number of beta males are where alphas truly excel in getting female attraction. Too few nice guys or too many men used to high social status in direct vicinity and the magic is gone.


  1. Totally off topic but;does anyone know what happened to Stage Two?Is he o.k.?Is he through with blogging?

  2. Wow. Solid, solid post, eleven.

    I know you posted reference to this before, but I recently had my understanding deepened about the "more guys = good" rule (benefits of sausage fests). You mention coffee shops here. It's pretty easy to be king of a coffee shop, which might sound laughable, but usually there are tons of cute girls there with bitch-shields on low. Being the alpha guy at a coffee shop is actually easier when there are more dudes around. Every one that smiles and nods makes the others smile and nod more, and the few hold-outs that grumble and hide behind their laptops just look like bitter losers.

    And when that coffee shop is in a hip neighborhood of Manhattan... oh my... the honeys....dear me. Ok I gotta go now!

  3. Contentless comment, mostly because I agree with the post so strongly: fantastic post, sir.

  4. I can imagine a situation where other alphas help you out. If you befriend some of them, you'll raise your status because you now associate with them.

  5. reminds me of some brazilian girls i know, they've truly grown weary of full-out alpha/aggressive dudes, and want a nice balance between the alpha and the beta...unlike most american girls i know that SAY they want that but honestly just screen out every herb/beta that comes their way

  6. HUNGRY HUNGRY HIPPOS YOJuly 23, 2009 at 11:34 PM

    Damn... I'm an avid roissy reader, but you put the ugly truths in a much more brutal and depressing fashion. It saddens me to realize and accept just how animalistic and potentially violent human mating patterns really are when unbound by the constraints our ancestors so wisely put in place and built for thousands of years, which we thoughtlessly destroyed in a matter of decades.

  7. Excellent post 11.

    I have friends who are aware of game, who actually do not want to go out with me anymore. Not saying it outloud, but it is an observation I made from the times we have been out lately...

    Funny power games.. (but damn serious)

    Out of context, this is not a reply, just an observation why it is totally wrong to take approach advice from a woman.

    Been thinking about it, and been formulating an example thinking about my friends who are clueless and how I could explain some things to them. This they would understand:

    See, women have a 95% batting ratio (David Buss). Batting being the approach. The pitcher in this case is irrelevant.

    This person will readily give you approach advice and will readily belittle anybody showing approach anxiety.

    If I had 95% batting ratio, I would mock Babe Ruth also.

    A man, on the other hand, not only is he batting with a known pitcher, but is batting in a stadium full of future and past pitcher who will have a great impact on the batting success of the future (i.e. decide to throw the ball). These pitchers in the stadium, are not only evaluating the current pithcer's value, but the current batting success and all other parameters.

    A failed batting attempt will not only stay as a failed batting attempt, but will affect the pitching technique or willingness, and even the bat's quality for future battings to come.

    And even with the best men out there, the corresponding succes rate runs between 5% (david buss) and 10% (generally appected 1 to 10 ratio, which is for longer term seduction. female 95% is for "you wanna fuck?")

    The only ones who could use the advice given by attractive women would be sports stars, rock stars, crime stars, etc etc.

    Here, an examples to explain my point.

    Gorgeous girl(a solid 9) has been seeing this "gorgeous player" for few weeks. He has not noticed her.(he is higher in attractivenes than her.) In a party environment, goes up to him and "You want to fuck", and succeeds. This is the only approach which I know of, so for me there is a 100% approach success. (On an average day, she got approached ten times).

    The same woman, talking about approaching and finding sex, could not understand the problem, and went "what is there to finding company for the night? you get dressed, you go out, and you come home together with somebody".

    This line of thinking goes for almost everything concerning woman, especially alpha behavior, their reactions to alpha behavior, and how to train to be alpha / how not to slack in your being alpha.

    Main reason is,

    1. Women really have no idea/are not honest to themselves about what they want
    2. Women have no ability to see the world through different eyes.

    the other one is

  8. @Master Dogen: Exactly. Most guys are completely unaware about the sensuality of a coffee place. Women don't go there to just buy a cup of joe. They go there to enjoy the rich smell, the tempting sweets, the relaxed atmosphere, the slight caffeine buzz and the men dressed for success.
    It's almost ironic to see all these guys slave away at their MacBooks at these joints, because they subconsciously believe that success in life and with women comes with success at work, while all it would take for the latter is a long, deep smile across the table...

    @Poetry of Flesh: *spank* for not capitalizing "Sir" when addressing me.

    @Anonymous: Associating with other alphas will not raise your status. The only way to raise your status in the presence of other high status players is to dominate their group.

    @Benedict: Yeah, some countries still have women who are in touch with their femininity. Unfortunately, some of these women change once they live in the US for a while.

    @HHHY: It's brutal, but nostalgia won't help. Pandora's box has been opened. There is no way back.
    What I find amazing is the lack of solid female input to the discussion. After all it is them who will suffer the most:
    Slaves to their instincts, they slut themselves out for some years - unable to fulfill their dream of getting fucked by an alpha and having him commit, too. Then they get old, unattractive and either marry someone they are not attracted to or live a life of loneliness.
    Yet, so many women become defensive, aggressive or ineffectively personal/anecdotal when they hear about this stuff. None of that will help them deal with their modern life misery.
    Guys increasingly realize what is going on and use it to their advantage. What about women?
    Male sexuality is absolutely congruent with an alpha life style. Thus guys can use the decline of traditional relationships to achieve happiness. Women need both the hot rough alpha casual sex AND the lovey-dovey beta shmoozing and security of a long term relationship to become truly happy. They should be much more interested than us in rectifying the situation.

    @z.g.: Nail on the head. This is why I cringe every time I hear or read a woman bragging about her "pick up skills". It's like a fat guy bragging about overeating.

  9. About to go to town, and indulge myself in a conversation with a friend I deem alpha, though he is married off now.

    11 said

    Associating with other alphas will not raise your status. The only way to raise your status in the presence of other high status players is to dominate their group.

    In this context I am undecided if going out with female friends or one or two attractive men is better, but it definitely trumps going out with regular joes.

    When you are in company of attractive men who also respect your status, and you constantly shuffle who is the leader, the girls around see this and your attractiveness skyrockets.

    When in company of Regular Joe's, the girls basically think "what is this dude doing with the Joe's?" and your dominance does not really affect this judgement. Never mind the dominance games the Joe's will play on you to make themselves feel better or make themselves look better to the girls around you.

    Who you are is also as important as, if not less than, who you know.

    A pack of more than three attractive men is a disaster.. There are not enough quality girls for this amount of studs.

    My two cents.

    On the "I am kind of a playa" girls;

    It is similar to me announcing:
    "Hey, I can pee standing"

  10. Well said. The advantage of alpha game and the degree of interest in it today I think is directly correlated to the proportion being skewed towards the beta as so many youth either embrace their sensitive side as taught by feminism, or have been raised without male role models to learn from. True men are in short supply, so more than at other times women respond to the alpha dog.

  11. I think that in the past status among males was mainly conferred by being part of a high staus group.Today,as whatever formerly constituted various groups has dissipated,individualistic status plays and markers tend to predominate.I'm not sure whether that works in men's favor or not,however.

  12. @Ovid: Interesting theory (and quite possible). What do you base that on?

    One thing that is for sure is that mere association with other high status players does not increase your status per se.

    If you dominate the other high status guys, you will get uber-status, that's true. But if they get into the position of using dominating body languag e over you, you will even lose status (at least momentarily). With best friends, status tends to oscillate (we clap each other on the shoulder, tell each other stories and listen without interrupting, buy each other beers etc.) - in that case your overall status remains unaffected.

  13. 11,I was thinking something along the lines of an (alpha) "team jersey." You know,something that announces your membership on the "alpha-team."In the past it might have been class affiliation,or race,or ethnicity.Nowadays those markers have been more or less delegitimized,as part of an overall attempt to destroy the Western male.In their absence a vacuum has been created.And since power,including alpha-power,abhors a vacuum,individualized Game rushes is to fill it up.Just a thought.

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