Nice Guys Finish Last: A Theory

Nice Guys Finish Last: A Theory


Was there some sort of crazy horny moon out this weekend?  Maybe it was just the warmer weather or my cute color block dress, but there were some pretty forward dudes out on the prowl.

I was waiting in line for the bathroom at Haus Party when this exact conversation occurred.  It wasn’t that he wasn’t cute.  He was!  He was that tall, thin hipster-type with messy dark hair that drives me wild.  It wasn’t even necessarily that he was much drunker than I was, even though just looking at him I could tell his breath would taste like stale PBR and Doritos.  It wasn’t even that his artist story completely fell apart in the greatest of ways.  He could have come back from that.  It’s just that ten seconds of effort does not result in a hot make out session in the bathroom line.

This episode happened while I was taking a breather from the guy cornering me in the kitchen.  Also very cute, had a successful career, liked the same music I did, but literally had me pinned against a table with his pelvis while he talked to me.  My friends were taking turns swooping in and pushing him off me for a little bit.  One even called him out for having pursued another really close friend of mine a few months ago.  It was one of those “don’t look him in the eyes, because he is totally going to have his tongue down your throat” moments.  Even with all of this, he kept asking me to come home with him.  I told him that I don’t do that, which he interpreted as “if I keep asking, this is going to eventually work out for me.”
We soon left that party and headed out to meet the rest of our friends at Burton’s.  There a 5’4” white dude in a button up red Bulls jersey over a regular red Bulls jersey and a backwards Bulls hat, one look and you knew this guy sells weed and his grandma’s prescription pills at street festivals, started making out with my slightly more outrageous friend.

My ride soon wanted to leave.  His friend had brought Bulls jersey guy, so the three of us headed out together with Benny the Bull sitting in back with me.  About two blocks into the ride, Benny slides over in the seat and whispers to me, “Are you going to come home with me tonight?  We don’t have to do anything.” This was the first thing he had said to me all night long. To which I replied, “Remember how you literally just finished making out with my friend?” He looked at me like I had just punched him in the face and stopped talking for the rest of the ride. 

These encounters got me thinking.  I hadn’t been acting flirtacious, which I know I sometimes do.  I was sober, so I didn’t just look like an easy target.  I was just hanging out.   Why do some guys think it’s okay to skip ALL of the steps?  I don’t just hop along home with someone who hasn’t even bought me a drink or probably even attempted to remember my name.  Of course, I’ve made out with random guys, but that novelty really wore off when I realized how easy it was.  I don’t need all my friends and a bunch of random strangers seeing me kiss someone either.  I’m a little more private than that.

Worst of all, there was a really nice guy at the party.  He was cute and interesting, but the aggressive guy kept scaring him away.  Is this why nice guys finish last?


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  • Alas, the assumption that "nice guys finish last" is incorrect - simply because its catchy. They usually wait to find exactly what they are looking for. A woman who is mindfully wasting her evening with the a fore mentioned schmucks probably isn't going to be a good match for the "nice guy." Instead, he becomes, "the one who got away."

  • In reply to Wesbecher:

    That's definitely an interesting viewpoint.

    I wouldn't say that I assume nice guys finish last. Honestly, I think that they seem to be the long term winners. Instead, I wanted to explore that typical nice guy lament: "Girls say that want a nice guy, but always date the douche bag." Is that really the case? Or is it a lack seizing the opportunity?

    In this exact situation, it probably wouldn't have worked out for me and the "nice guy" in the long run. In our conversation, he was telling me about some pretty big adventures he had coming up in the next few months. The timing would have been very off.

    But to your point, was it the alpha male scaring him off or was it that I wasn't being firm enough in turning the aggressive doucher down to signify a swoop opening to the nice guy?

  • In reply to Wesbecher:

    The confusion isn't in finding an answer to the question: Are are douche bags more successful with woman than "good guy?" The confusion is in the question. Nobody is just one or the other. I'll tell you this, both good guys and a**holes struggle with women. Good guys can't get a girl and jerks can't keep one. They both suck. So don't look for a "good" man or an "a**hole" man.. look for a REAL man.

    A real man knows when to be a playful a**hole and also knows when to switch gears and be sensitive and attentive. The reality is women want both. They want a man that is strong and sure of himself and goes after what he wants and gets it. At the same time they want a guy that will put them on a pedestal, listen to their day and be empathetic to their struggles.

    If you want to be successful with women. You have to be fun, playful and yes, sometimes tastefully jerky, or else it's tough to entice them. Enticing them only gets your foot in the door. If you don't try to see her for who she really is.. there's now way she's gonna ever sleep with you (without being wasted)

    Being an a**hole isn't better than being a good guy or vise vera. If you want her to be into you, you have to bounce between both. That is how you build tension and attraction. The problem isn't that these guys don't have both sides to them. The problem is that they don't know what the hell they're doing and they're desperate to get laid (both the jerks and the nice guys).the problem isn't the's their desperation, and out of desperation come irrational decisions (like trying to get a girl to come home with you as an initial pick up line)

    Keep your head up girls. There are good guys out there. They just haven't learned how to present that yet.

  • In reply to SpencerBurnett:

    I agree with you that no one can be plunked completely into any given category. I know that I'm multi-faceted and really, really, really confusing, so I can't expect everyone else to be so one-sided.

    I wouldn't even necessarily call all of the overly forward guys "jerks" (bar Benny). They were just stepping way over the line.

    I just think the aggressive marking of his territory by the one guy made it hard for the guy I could've been interested in to step in. He just kinda sat back and watched it happen, when what he should've done was snap me up while the the other guy went on one of his momentary stalks around the party and relocated me. We could've talked more and we would've looked as if he was "rescuing me." Double points!

  • In reply to AnaFernatt:

    well win some lose some, but the key is being honest and flat out be yourself . today's women and men are filled with judgment and opinion and expectations thats the key right one is perfect and lay aside the idea of perfect guy or gal and just get on with it. you keep on attracting douchbags then you got some internal house cleaning to do and when its done you picking up skills and being picked up will get better. and women should have boundries's but for crying out loud lay down some of the games and allow your self to be an open minded and honest. try to step out of your fear zone and stop blaming and go get the first guy ,, what stopped you from walking over to talk to nice guy ,, maybe your expectation and opinion . ladies and gents get over your self and that's were it begins

  • In reply to AnaFernatt:

    Some good comments above, i agree with a lot of it. Ladies, it is on you to do a better job chasing the overzealous men away. These guys aren't alpha males or strong personalities, they're just oblivious idiots with no shame who don't care.

    and guys, it's on you to now act like these backwards troglodytes. The men you described sound about as socially inept as possible. Except for the nice dude who has class, and boundaries.

    as for the initial question, no. Nice guys don't even place, they're not even allowed to run. That said, no nice guys stay that way for very long. It's Pavlovian, their behavior will alter due to negative reinforcement. And on the flip side, any girl who wants criminals, "bad boys" and other assorted low-class trash wouldn't be right for the nice dudes anyway.

    If a girl gets turned off from the man paying and opening car doors on the first date...well who wants her then? If she says "I'm not used to being treated this well, and treated this nice" and then loses interest in that guy because of it. Well, she doesn't deserve anything but the bottom rung anyway. This isn't the most PC slogan, but it's certainly true "you can't make a hoe a housewife."

    And guys, if you notice the girl you're pursuing has such low self-esteem that she only respond to life's biggest losers that have nothing to offer....then the problem is with her not you. But if you keep pursuing her, and go for similar goes, then the problem is now with you.

    I do agree that most guys aren't all douches, or all selfless doormats. some are, but most are in between. All I'm saying is, guys, if you're worth anything you'll make yourself a challenge to these women, and the ones that are worth it will pick up on that.

    as for the girls that would just go home with any idiot that asks them to after five minutes of conversation, those are disgusting tramps that no legitimate guy or REAL MAN should want anyway.

    And those girls probably have big, ugly-ass tattoos on their lower back

  • In reply to thesportsbank:

    Just to be clear: I don't know of any girl who gets turned off by guys who pay for things and open doors.

    And, making yourself a challenge for women is a terrible idea. That's just adding yet another game to the already complicated pool.

  • In reply to AnaFernatt:

    Otherwise, right on the money! Thanks for the comment!

  • In reply to AnaFernatt:

    and I forgot to mention, good article. I see why Jimmy included this in the daily mailing, you make a lot of great points. guys and girls alike, you don't have much control over the type of people you attract, but you can control how quickly and effectively you jettison the douchey guys/bad girls that come your way

  • In reply to AnaFernatt:

    I thought "finishing" last was a good thing ;)

  • In reply to AnaFernatt:

    Your last sentence summed it up. That is EXACTLY why nice guys finish last. But finishing last could also mean that guy that came into your life when you just got throught a bitter divorce and showed you how a REAL man is supposed to treat a woman, or that "friend" that you never thought about hooking up with that has been through all your "d-bag" boyfriends and flings, never judging until finally he lays one you while your crying over your most recent break-up. I think finishing last is the best because your the one they keep!!

  • In reply to AnaFernatt:

    and yes I know my comment above is littered with broad sweeping generalizations, but it's impossible to have this convo and not do that. also sorry for the typoes- should have been "NOT ACT LIKE" not "now act"

    and "FOR SIMILAR GIRLS" not "for similar goes"

  • In reply to AnaFernatt:

    sadly, I do know those girls. And you want to feet sorry for them, you really do- cuz they're usually the ones from horribly broken homes, with dating patterns that involve abuse.....but they just don't believe they deserve any better, so there's nothing you can do.

    If you're a good person, you can't just turn scumbag. Anyways, moving on to the next point, maybe "challenge" isn't the right word. By challenge, I mean not swooning over 'em right away, overly and readily available right off the bat, "too easy." if you will

  • In reply to AnaFernatt:

    We all know Charlie Sheen's take on this article would be that nice guys finish last, awesome guys finish on her face. Some guys, perhaps like Benny the Bull from Burton's, even would take the extra step of posting the awesomeness online for the world's enjoyment.

  • Ana,

    after clicking on your story about Beyonce and Jay Z, I quickly moved on when I saw the 'nice guys' article as I have had several conversations with my girlfriends about this phenomenon. My point is brief, but I believe valid and potentially valuable to girls looking for a nicer guy. The main problem is not the guys, it is the girls who are constantly complaining about the kind of guys who chat to them in bars, often resulting in the comment 'why do I only attract assholes?' It is no mystery that the kind of guy who is supremely confident enough to be the first to bowl over and try his luck with a girl is usually loud, outgoing, somewhat obnoxious and looking for the path of least resistance to getting laid. Who knew. Guys who are smart, selective and polite will not pursue a girl the second she walks in the door, or the moment they lock eyes and might use numerous subtle cues to show interest to a girl. During the time it takes to drop these subtle hints and continue this distant foreplay, what girls do not understand is that the guy is also waiting to see how this attractive individual deals with the imminent approach of the neanderthal you speak of. Allowing the time for other guys to go up and speak to a girl gives me more of a window into the soul than any 5 minute drunken chat ever could. It is a gamble, I'll give you that, but it is a gamble that I am willing to take and although it leaves me disappointed from time to time, the disappointment is always for how I was wrong about the girl rather than being sad I didn't approach.

    The metaphorical kick in the dick in all of this is that girls don't seem to realize that if they hang out at any bar, club, or in any social environment at all and wait for guys to come and talk to them, they are basically limiting themselves to meeting the most obnoxious, confident, stubborn, sexually driven, egotistical assholes in the building. Sometimes, the nice, quiet, studious, selective and sexually unselfish guys will approach a girl and tell them just how wonderful they are, but this is usually followed by the offer of a chat with no agenda and a drink with no obligation to blow them. This is not to be misconstrued in any way, this guy is not gay, he is not opposed to having sex with you at some point or making out in a dark alley under the moonlight. He probably won't stick around for a massive amount of time without permission, attempt to stick his tongue down your throat, grab your ass or declare his conquest to the whole venue in anyway, but I thought that that's what you were complaining about, right? If you really want to find the nice guys and you do not want to limit yourself to 10 a penny whores who trawl through women with little regard for you as a human, why not approach him? Oh shit, did he suggest a girl goes and speaks to a guy? First? Yes! Stop your complaining as you spend an uncomfortable ride home being fondled in the back of a cab by the guy who has seemingly grown three sets of hands and starts rummaging like it's a garage sale. You can do something about this! Study the guys in a bar, make some eye contact, find the ones you like and take a chance. You might still meet a dick, you might get rejected a lot, but at least you will be in charge of who you speak to.

    There, I said it. Maybe this could prompt another wonderful blog.

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