Part I. Jedi Mind Tricks
If there’s a piece of advice that I’d give to any inexperienced guy trying to pick up a girl at a bar, it’s that asking to buy a girl a drink without even really talking to her isn’t a sure way to get laid, but instead a guaranteed way to drain your wallet. Thankfully, I learned this painlessly, a fantastic night as I third wheeled with my roommate and his 18-year old girlfriend to Cornerstone Loft & Grill, right off the campus of The University of Maryland. My roommate Luke’s girlfriend was named Erin, and even though she wasn’t even legal to drink, she was already a professional con artist at tricking dudes into buying her drinks.
Erin was an attractive, but not super attractive blonde. Like, the average dude would definitely say yes to sleeping with her, but It would take more than just a simple request to get a guy to buy a round of drinks for her friends. I swore that girl was able to pull some major Obi-Wan Kenobi shit. That night, she was able to convince random guys to not only buy drinks for her, but for her boyfriend as well as me, her boyfriend’s roommate through pure trickery. She would start up a conversation with random girls while simultaneously trying to eye down guys who were already trying to buy drinks at the bar. Once they had locked eye contact, she would approach them, and talk about how her friends were trying to meet some new people, and that they’d also love to have some guys buy them drinks. The guys are thinking that they just scored themselves some friendly conversation with the decoy girls, if not a partner in bed that night, so there was a 100% success rate of 3 drinks being added to that tab. She’d take the drinks, say she’d bring them to her friends and come back, walk right past the decoys and right back to us, her actual friends.
I would watch her scurry away from her prey after snatching the goods and see the looks on their faces when she didn’t bring them to the girls that she was talking to earlier. The guys would just shrug, and maybe laugh at the guy who just put the drinks on his card. As if that shit happens all the time. Which it does. Erin was definitely a special one though. That girl managed to fool some poor group of dudes TWICE IN THE SAME NIGHT. Like, they had already saw her run away with the drinks, come back saying something about her friends being shy or something and said one of the dudes was really cute. And she’d just run away with the drinks again. And once again, a shrug and some laughing.
Part II. The Legend of the Five Dollar Bill
Sometimes, approaching a girl can go horribly wrong. But thankfully, one incident I’ve witnessed that has made sure that I can never feel that bad about looking creepy or awkward ever again, because it will NEVER be as bad as the time Geno tried to buy a girl a drink. In the prior section, I discussed magical Erin, able to charm guys into buying drinks for her imaginary girl friends. Geno on the other hand is anything but magical.
Before I can rush into this incredible story, you have to learn some backstory on our friend Geno. I’m not even sure how I came to be friends with Geno. He hails from Upstate New York, which might as well be on an entirely different planet from civilized, Actual New York. He essentially grew up in a trailer park, living a rather sheltered life, but was suddenly thrown into the real world, where he finally got to interact with people who weren’t rednecks. On top of all of this, his voice LITERALLY SOUNDS LIKE MICKEY MOUSE. Talk about unfortunate. Geno was always around, and considered “one of the gang,” but nobody was ever sure how that came to be. He’s the kind of guy who would just show up when you made plans with your friends to meet at a public place, but would suddenly show up. Everyone knew him, but nobody would ever admit to inviting him. It seems strange, but it was pretty fun to have him around due to his social ineptitude and the unintentionally hilarious situations his shrill Mickey Mouse Voice would create. This is among his best stories.
Geno was an entertaining drunk. He was already loud and unnecessarily aggressive while sober, but it’d be taken to an extreme with alcohol. Add an extra dose of clumsiness, and the dude is knocking over chairs, making a mess, but also making sure everyone else around him was having a good time. I suspect he knew he was a social punching bag, but secretly took it in pride, as he knew it would affix himself as a member of the gang, and would keep on getting him the invites to hang out. For the most part, these drunk shenanigans happened within the confines of somebody’s home, but this legendary tale occurred during a night out at the bar.
So one crowded night at a fairly popular bar, he lets us know that one of his coworkers is present and that he’s got a crush on her. This excites just about everyone. He was the type to suck up to girls in our little group all the time. With the earlier description, it shouldn’t be a surprise that Geno isn’t quite a casanova. Girls in our group have mentioned that he’s kind of cute or got better looking over the years, but just about all of them were entirely repulsed by his personality. We all wanted to see him in action with a girl who isn’t one of us. So his plan is to buy her a drink.
Cue the T-Pain music. Buying a girl a drink is a classic Hollywood move to cold approach a girl, and I’ve stated that it’s a terrible idea, but even more terrible performed by somebody who doesn’t know how to execute it properly. Think about all of the ways that buying a girl a drink can go wrong. You will not guess Geno’s messup correctly. Buying the girl a drink but having no drink for yourself? That’s kind of awkward. Nope. The girl tries to take advantage by ordering a shot of Blue Label? Erin could probably pull that off, but nope, that wasn’t it either. Something as simple as stuttering? Well, maybe he did that too. In fact, he PROBABLY stuttered while doing this. But that was not the mistake that Geno made.
Geno technically didn’t even buy his coworker a drink. Instead, he handed her a five dollar bill, and told her it was for the drink she had purchased for herself just before. This is the most cringeworthy thing I’ve ever heard in a pickup scenario, and I doubt I’ll ever hear anything more embarrassing. In his mid-twenties, this man did not know that it wasn’t proper bar etiquette to give somebody money for a drink that they had already purchased to “pick them up”. This isn’t even to mention that she was drinking a margarita-type drink at a rather ritzy bar that probably ran at least $8. Not only did he just hand the lady a five, but it wouldn’t have even been enough to cover the price of the drink.
There are two lessons to learn from this story. Buying a girl a drink is probably a bad idea if you’re not sure that she’s actually chill, and that there is never a reason to feel embarrassed about messing up with a potential romantic interest after you’ve heard this story.