Spectacular church alpha DLV.

8 Sep

This just in:  even a natural alpha is not immune to crippling DLV.

On Sunday two of my friends and I attended our church’s monthly after-service luncheon.  I think the luncheons are intended to be “a time of fellowship,” which generally means that people who already know each other table up together and share gossip what’s going on in their lives.  In other words, if you’re single, you’ve got about a 20% change of meeting the person who will one day become your spouse.

On this particular occasion, however, my friends and I had the good fortune of coming into contact with Wilhelmina, one of the church’s dowagers, who had zoned in on two male visitors and invited us to join them at their table so they would “feel welcome.”  Ha.  (Of course, now being schooled in Game, I took it as an indirect compliment that my looks are still viable.  Well, either that, or it was a pity invite, but my hamster will not allow that line of thought to dominate.)

The two male visitors were Vlad and Pushka, whom I immediately recognized as the two guys who had sat behind me and my friends in the service and talked the whole time in another language.  It turned out that they were Armenian Persians who were doing some church cruising.  Vlad was fat, dark-haired, and had a unibrow that would make Bert from Sesame Street envious.  He seemed nice but was not super-talkative, probably because his English was so-so.  Pushka, on the other hand, was the most alpha single guy I’d come across at a church in a long time.  He had a shock of unruly thick, red hair and the physique of a guy who enjoys weights, and he was very sociable.  Even better, he had an interesting backstory that added to the contrast of his being able to claim Iranian citizenship while sporting very red hair.  Before moving to the U.S., he spent ten years living in Spain – which allowed him to speak Spanish with my Spanish-speaking friends.  Nice move!

I was starting to think that this guy had incredible, natural game – he even had the presence of mind to act surprised and insist we looked much younger when he found out how old we were – when he mentioned his Canadian “almost-fiancee.”  When my friends pressed, he said that he wanted to propose to her soon, and that he had met her online through video games.

I’m pretty sure you could hear the crash of a boulder falling from a 70-story building when he dropped that knowledge.

While online dating has grown in acceptability, in church circles that’s more or less limited to eHarmony.  Among Christians, I’ve never heard of a couple being matched through any other service.  In addition, video games are pretty much the fastest way for a man to kill any desirability he may possess.  Even though gaming is a huge industry, video gamers – at least white, male gamers – are consistently considered bottom-of-the-barrel mate material.  And guys who use online gaming to meet chicks?  That they want to marry?? Forget it.

Here’s a clip from How I Met Your Mother that nicely sums up people’s feelings about those who gets their dates this way:

Pushka said that he and Vlad would come back to our church next week.  I wish him all the best.  And I hope he doesn’t talk as much during the service.

33 Responses to “Spectacular church alpha DLV.”

  1. Joseph B September 8, 2010 at 12:41 pm #

    I believe you are who you say you are now. This was the missing burst of characteristic femaleness…

  2. Aunt Haley September 8, 2010 at 12:53 pm #

    …..Thank you?….

  3. sdaedalus September 8, 2010 at 12:54 pm #

    I think you need to make a move on Pushka. I can give you a few tips on redheads if you like…

  4. Aunt Haley September 8, 2010 at 1:21 pm #

    Why do I need to make a move on Pushka?

  5. Keoni Galt September 8, 2010 at 2:06 pm #

    Aunt Haley, to automatically disqualify any man who is a gamer is basically disqualifying anyone under 40 nowadays. Is this notion that gamers are not good husband material a deal breaker for you?

  6. Aunt Haley September 8, 2010 at 2:15 pm #

    It’s not an automatic dealbreaker, but finding out a man was an avid gamer would give me pause. Maybe not a very long pause, but it wouldn’t make him more attractive to me.

  7. y81 September 8, 2010 at 2:17 pm #

    I’m with the author: you don’t want a dorky husband. I would add that you don’t want a foreigner as a husband either, because foreign men are effeminate, cowardly, and prone to infidelity.

    But I think the author, since she is determined to have LTRs only with churchgoing men, should find a church with more and better single men. (In the nature of things, such a church will also have more and better single women, but at least there is a chance.) Then, find some churchly activities that will be heavily male (or at least half male), like ski trips or conferences on maintaining integrity in the financial marketplace, and let nature take its course.

  8. Silas Reinagel September 8, 2010 at 2:21 pm #

    In some ways this post says a lot more about you than about him. Just because you consider video gaming to be a DLV doesn’t mean that it universally is, or that it’s even a critical factor.

    As Dave-in-Hawaii rightly points out, nearly all American red-blooded males under 40 play video games. When you have such a strong mental prejudice, you close yourself off to relational possiblities and ensure that you never have the opportunity to see all the sides of a person.

    There’s always a major danger with excluding people too quickly and judging them before you really know them. That’s one of the problems with the Game-o-sphere, which focuses almost completely on externals and often falls into the category of stylistic reductionism.

  9. Aunt Haley September 8, 2010 at 2:23 pm #

    I don’t think you understand what the real DLV was: it wasn’t that he was playing video games, it was that he apparently had such a video game life that he had met a girl in another country in this manner and despite having a completely long distance relationship, had decided he wanted to marry her.

  10. Silas Reinagel September 8, 2010 at 2:30 pm #

    Your explanation confuses me.

    Are you saying that the DLV was that he had “such a video game life” or that he decided he wanted to marry this girl that he had a long-distance relationship with? Is it the way he met her that you find distasteful or the nature of their relationship (long-distance)?

  11. tannen September 8, 2010 at 2:38 pm #

    So what if he plays video games? And met his beloved playing such games? I scent the stench of jealousy.

    He’s redheaded (maybe some ancient Norman crusader blood in there), Armenian/Iranian (more exotic than pasty white ‘muricans), lived abroad for ten years, at least trilingual, sociable, attractive and has a nice body. Probably knows how to run a business too, those guys usually do. And is somewhat actively attending church. What’s. not. to. like?

    So he meets his beloved online while playing games. Who cares? The two lovebirds have a shared interest they’ve bonded over, be happy for them. You were initially attracted to him but are jealous of his “almost-fiancee”. So you use an activity you find dorky and unattractive, (video games) to reduce his attractiveness in your eyes. Now he fits comfortably in your loooooser category.

    Get over it. As Keoni Galt said, almost all males below 40 play video games. Lose the entitlement complex.

    I’d say gaming far less of a character flaw in a man than a shoe shopping or reality television fixation in a woman.

  12. Aunt Haley September 8, 2010 at 2:47 pm #

    Why so caustic? You accuse me of jealousy, but you’re the one who’s sounding wounded.

    Attraction isn’t an either/or, on/off switch. I didn’t say he was no longer attractive, only that he revealed information that made him less so. All of his good qualities still remain.

    Besides, what does it matter? He wants to marry someone else and didn’t express interest in me. End of story.

  13. tannen September 8, 2010 at 2:48 pm #

    >>”Even though gaming is a huge industry, video gamers – at least white, male gamers – are consistently considered bottom-of-the-barrel mate material. And guys who use online gaming to meet chicks? That they want to marry?? Forget it.”<<

    I doubt he's using online gaming to "meet chicks". There's more going on here you aren't privy to.

    Plus, they have a shared interest. Something they can enjoy. Together.

  14. Aunt Haley September 8, 2010 at 2:49 pm #

    A little bit of both.

  15. Samson September 8, 2010 at 4:51 pm #

    Looks like everyone else has beat me to every punch I was going to make, so I’ll only say this:

    While online dating has grown in acceptability, in church circles that’s more or less limited to eHarmony.

    Eh? There are several Christian dating sites. Friends of mine have had great success with christiancafe.com.

  16. Joseph B September 8, 2010 at 5:03 pm #

    Clearly Haley has never spent significant time in an MMORG.

    What compels people is the formation of communities, guilds, long-term friends, cooperative play.

    Nobody (successfully) goes onto WoW to get chicks. My guess is that he won her with pure rapport game and general outgoing friendliness. Which you’ve noted he possesses in real life.

    They might still be the nerdsville couple, but you can’t make that assumption, not with how popular WoW has become.

  17. ASDF September 8, 2010 at 5:10 pm #

    Isn’t this what contrast game is all about? You should be tingling like crazy!

    Nobody does online gaming to meet chicks. It must have just been a happy coincidence.

  18. Aunt Haley September 8, 2010 at 7:01 pm #

    He did have great contrast game. I think one of my friends was tingling harder than I was, though.

  19. Aunt Haley September 8, 2010 at 7:02 pm #

    foreign men are effeminate, cowardly, and prone to infidelity.

    That’s a rather wide brush you’re painting with there, sir.

  20. Aunt Haley September 8, 2010 at 7:03 pm #

    I’ve heard of christiancafe.com, but eHarmony is still the giant.

  21. jack September 8, 2010 at 7:20 pm #

    Ahhhhh, the grapes, they are sour, no?

  22. Aunt Haley September 8, 2010 at 7:29 pm #

    And here I was thinking you’d be proud of me for keeping my clothes on.

  23. Will S. September 8, 2010 at 7:35 pm #

    I don’t play WoW myself, but it was a hobby of several of the young men in my last church; I don’t think it hurt their long-term chances. One of them started dating a girl while I was there, and was all but engaged to her by the time I moved away.

  24. ASDF September 8, 2010 at 9:09 pm #

    I think contrast game only works if the chick likes the de-alphafying trait. E.g., If you liked opera, you would probably like an alpha jock and a Frasier-esque opera nut equally, but a jock who liked opera would set you a-tingle more than either. However, a lot of less cultured girls might say he was a fag and refuse to date him.

    Think about what would have happened if a gamer chick had been at your table, fed up with all the nerds who play WOW. That’s probably how the guy ended up engaged to one.

  25. Aunt Haley September 8, 2010 at 9:32 pm #

    I think contrast game only works if the chick likes the de-alphafying trait.

    I think you’re on to something, although I don’t think the contrasting trait has to be de-alphafying. Contrast game is merely about a man having an attractive but unexpected quality; it doesn’t necessarily have to be a beta trait, although the girl may find it beta depending on who she is. For example, a SWPL girl may find a man who speaks fluent French very attractive but then be disappointed when she finds out he also likes NASCAR and Nickelback. The contrast isn’t between alpha and beta traits, but because of who she is, the contrasting traits may be considered unattractive. (Of course, if the man has the right panache, she’ll find it endearing that he has such uncultured taste.)

  26. Cane Caldo September 8, 2010 at 10:11 pm #

    Pot; Kettle.

    When you use phrases like “crippling DLV” and compare your disdain to a boulder falling 70 stories you can’t credibly accuse others of taking your meaning too hard.

    I didn’t notice any streaks of jealousy in your story, but it does seem like you were too pleased.

  27. Cane Caldo September 8, 2010 at 10:17 pm #

    Hold the phone! I thought y81 was a girl.

  28. Aunt Haley September 8, 2010 at 10:36 pm #

    I thought y81 was male…but I could be wrong.

  29. Cane Caldo September 8, 2010 at 10:36 pm #

    In AH’s defense: there is a qualitative difference among types of gamers. I’ve never played WoW, but I work with enough guys who do to know what an MMO is, what “DPS” means, and what “tanking” is. Besides, even Toyota made a commercial that played on a WoW meme.

    However; Three quarters of the WoW dudes I know are in their 30s and single. One of those qualities is permanent. The three married WoW guys I know are–to a man–married to women who make considerably more than they do. It’s likely that those women purposefully married below their market value.

    If the Red Iranian had said he played Madden competitively, and met a girl at a tournament, I bet AH’s reaction would have been less visceral.

  30. Badger Nation September 9, 2010 at 6:34 am #

    Count me among those calling shenanigans. The distaste by most urban women for video games, NASCAR, watching football or whatever reflects a condescending disapproval of a man doing something he enjoys with no higher purpose.

    Of course, THEY get to have their girls’ nights out, their Real Housewives, their $1,000 purses. But NO – hubby is supposed to spend all of his spare time working on the house, romancing the lady, anything as long as it’s not just for him. This after he spends his days building his career to afford baby’s ring and big house. It’s what a “responsible” man does when he “stops being a child settles down.” Right.

    I’d be remiss if I didn’t also mention the image-whoring. Chicks don’t want their men playing games because it would make the girl look bad to their friends. They are deathly afraid of the moment their girlfriends hear about this and twist their mouths – “ewwww!” Their public image is more important than whether their man is happy with himself.

    Meanwhile a lot of these women don’t seem to realize that the man’s interests and passions are what motivate him, what give him the high status and confidence the woman wants out of him in the first place.

    A man is like a casserole – it’s all baked in there together, a woman can’t just pick out the parts she don’t like after he’s come out of the oven.

  31. y81 September 9, 2010 at 6:46 am #

    I am not aware that our hostess has expressed a distaste for men who like NASCAR or football. Those activities aren’t status-diminishing. But an obsession with video games brands you as a dork.

    The above should be qualified by noting that NASCAR fandom is to a slight degree identified with lower economic status. But it isn’t identified with being a social loser, so it wouldn’t be a problem for most women.

  32. reformed_tomboy September 9, 2010 at 7:18 am #

    It’s quite possible he ended up meeting this girl online because he has moved around so much. Speaking as someone who has moved on a regular basis because of my university studies, it can be hard to meet people at times. That’s why a lot of people will turn to some sort of online form, such as WoW to meet people and “hang out” as it were.

    While I myself have so far avoided online dating because it makes me uncomfortable personally, I know many people who have met through a variety of online forums. Some through fandom, gaming or dating websites.

    I think that provided a gamer also has other stuff going for him – as in has a variety of interests, holds a decent job, is a nice guy, etc – it doesn’t matter if his big hobby is gaming.

  33. flirtyintrovert December 4, 2011 at 9:46 am #

    Coming from Silicon Valley, I totally disagree! All young men play video games these days, not just the nerdy ones.

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