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September 27, 2005

Pick-Up Lines

Over at Feministe, they're compiling the worst pickup lines they've ever heard. I remember, back in the day, a book listing bad ones, of which my favorite was:

"Hey baby, I have cable."

I guess now it'd be "wireless". In any case -- I find this whole conversation fairly bizarre. Does anyone actually use pickup lines? I don't. None of my friends do. And while that means my sample size is approximately wildly unrepresentative, I'm still having trouble with the concept. When folks go up to start conversations they don't just, you know, say something? About the game, about the place, about the day, about the event? Because to me, pickup lines are fundamentally flawed, they don't offer a next step. You're just damning yourself to the ninth circle of awkward conversation hell if your first sentence is a dead end and your second needs to reopen a closed discussion.

But hey, I'm young, I might be missing something. Anyone use pickup lines in a non-ironic way and see some beauty in them that I don't?

September 27, 2005 in Life | Permalink


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The best thing I've ever seen about pickup lines was an episode of "WKRP in Cincinnati" where all the guys demonstrate their favorite pickup lines ("Hey, baby, what's your sign?"), and Les, of all people, comes up with the best pickup line ever:

"Hi, I'm extremely wealthy."

Posted by: M.A. | Sep 27, 2005 11:19:16 AM

I had a friend who regularly used "Nice ass, can I wear it home as a hat." Strangely, it seemed to work for her too.

Another friend claimed to use "Would you like to be sodomized." He said it didn't work often, but when it did it was worth all the rejections :)

I never saw that one work personally, probably glad of that.

Posted by: Dave Justus | Sep 27, 2005 11:20:13 AM

I thought up a can't fail line when I was in college: "I'm much more charming when I'm hung over." Never used it, though...probably for the best.

Posted by: Tom Hilton | Sep 27, 2005 11:55:23 AM

I've always thought that nobody had ever used a "pickup line". I've certainly never seen anyone use one, and can't imagine what kind of person would think they would succeed.

I've also never seen a doghouse. I don't think they exist either.

Are there any other things which are ubiquitous in pop culture but don't actually exist? Another one would be hitchhiking.

Posted by: Cryptic Ned | Sep 27, 2005 12:24:20 PM

Nope, hitchhiking's definitely real. Take it from someone who lived in Santa Cruz.

Posted by: Ezra | Sep 27, 2005 12:31:38 PM

Maybe it only exists in California and Nevada, so it's magnified by constant Hollywood portrayals. Kind of like how in TV shows it snows for one day a year (Xmas) no matter where you live.

Posted by: Cryptic Ned | Sep 27, 2005 12:37:14 PM

Honestly, my best experience came from something like "want to have a drink in my room?" Sure, it's a pick-up line when you turn them down...but what about when you accept? As far as I can tell, a "pick-up line" is banter that fails to get you into bed. Otherwise, it's just foreplay. And who's opposed to that? :)

Posted by: weboy | Sep 27, 2005 12:57:21 PM

Ezra, was there a transit strike while you were at UCSC too? We had one my junior year...hitchhiking was standard coping procedure.

Also, I did a 3 week hitchhiking tour of the west one summer. I can't say it happens now, but I can definitely say that people were hitchhiking back in 1981 - 1985.

Posted by: Tom Hilton | Sep 27, 2005 1:08:12 PM

M.A.--That was a great show, though I only ever caught it in syndication.

Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Sep 27, 2005 2:03:47 PM

"Hi, I'm extremely wealthy." is now read: i'm rich, beeyatch!

though the worst/best pickup line today would be: hey babe, i've got a blog with 600 readers

Posted by: almostinfamous | Sep 27, 2005 2:03:48 PM

"Do you live around here often?" --Steven Wright

Posted by: Matt | Sep 27, 2005 3:35:14 PM

Lots of people use pick-up lines.

Best pick up line:

"Hi, my name is " followed by a compliment of some sort. Worked every time for me.

Worst pick up line:

"Do you see the angry leprechaun on my shoulder?" Creeping people out is bad. Worse, if the person says yes, it could be trouble...

Posted by: joshowitz | Sep 27, 2005 3:58:19 PM

LOL. Weboy's got it right. If it works, it's conversation. It's only a pickup line if it fails. Ergo, there is no such thing as a successful pickup line.

Posted by: Nonplussed | Sep 27, 2005 4:16:01 PM

though the worst/best pickup line today would be: hey babe, i've got a blog with 600 readers

I've been known to talk about my blog in public, if only to explain what it is. Watch the eyes glaze over.

Posted by: Lauren | Sep 27, 2005 5:17:05 PM

Careful, Lauren. Say that too loudly and you may suddenly find you have listeners whose eyes don't claze over.

Posted by: Nicholas Beaudrot | Sep 27, 2005 7:33:04 PM

Most people just. Don't. Give. A shit.

Unfortunately I had to learn this the hard way since my semester is crushing the last of my social life and what's left is IM and blogging. God, I'm depressing myself.

Thanks to the boyfriend for taking me off the market. The other day I was watching Elimidate and was so glad I don't have to do the dating thing, especially since my last blind date situation was -- well, a failure.

Posted by: Lauren | Sep 27, 2005 8:07:10 PM

To be applied spareingly in 'certain bars' (pickup/cruise variety) like some if SF:

"let's fuck"

Posted by: JimPortlandOR | Sep 27, 2005 9:29:54 PM

Ned, hitchhiking is very real. It was the primary means of town to town in-state transport for most of my friends without cars in college. Greyhounds seemed so wasteful and unsporting.

I used to think the same way as you re: Pickup lines, Ezra, until I spent an evening in one of the bars where people quite different from me frequent. All kinds of cheesy pickup lines were flying all around me (never, oddly, directed toward me...)

Posted by: djw | Sep 28, 2005 2:16:23 AM

Best pickup line, like, EVER: My friend, Omar, well into his cups said to his female bartender, "Come here often"?

Posted by: Jimmm | Sep 28, 2005 10:12:31 AM

Some ones I've heard before are:

Can I flirt with you?
Do you know what'd look good on you? Me!
You're so hot, your ass is on fire.
Nice shoes. Wanna f**k?

Talking to a woman/girl in natural and playful way is mouch more likely to lead to a date than some crazy pick-up line... http://www.adventures-of-a-pua.com/2005/09/pickup_lines_suck.html


Posted by: Brad | Sep 30, 2005 6:41:43 AM

Did you grow up on a farm
no why
because, you sure know how to raise a cock

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Posted by: enlargement | Dec 4, 2006 4:10:05 PM

Well, I think a funny pick up line MIGHT be able to get a laugh and then start a conversation going, but no way is a pick up line is going to do it on its own. Still, they can be something to just break the ice with though. Check these pick up lines out.

Posted by: Dave | Feb 18, 2007 4:44:22 PM

I Disagree when people say there is no such thing as a succesful pick up line and i have a great one that is testet and approved by all the women i know...

You:Where are they...?

Lady:Where are what?

You: You're wings cuz you can't be anything else then an angel.

Trust me it works every time.

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