"Doctor Holocaust is a villainous gentleman who, above all else, is trying to take over the world."

Nice Guys Finish Last (2/2)

Now, herein lies the primary source of the negativity that surrounds Nice Guys. Rejection. For example: Nice Guy A spends X amount of time trying to get Girl B to date him. She, through some means, chooses not too. Either because she chooses another guy, is simply not attracted to the Nice Guy, or she turns out to be a giant lizard. Whatever. The result is Nice Guy A gets upset. And people seem to think that this is somehow inappropriate.
But here’s the thing, when we put time, energy, effort or money into ANYTHING that does not result in the desired outcome we have a negative reaction. For example, a gamer gets mad when their save file gets erased by accident. This is a game that will in no way offer them any kind of applicable life skills, gain them any money, or achieve anything real. But they get mad because they spent time and effort trying to get to a point in the game. Now they have to start over. And no one likes that. It’s a natural reaction.
And I know… “But Doc, you are relating the sanctity of a relationship to something as mundane as a game or a contest.” How can I not? How is initiating a relationship with someone not a contest? How is succeeding in that not a victory? And vice-versa? The Nice Guy just spent a bunch of time and effort (and likely even money) trying to show this Girl that they are a worthy candidate for a romantic relationship. And for whatever reason it didn’t turn out. So naturally, just like everyone else, they look for someone to blame. Maybe the girl decided to date a jerk or something but ultimately the negativity stems from their failure.
And while we’re on the subject of “The Jerk” let me explain, from my opinion, how that label comes about. It’s a combination of The Jerk contributing directly to the failure of the Nice Guy and the lack of work The Jerk needed to do to succeed. Imagine that you just ran a whole marathon JUST to have some jackass ride up in a Mercedes, get out, and walk across the finish line taking home the gold. It’s infuriating. And how this happens is a perfectly good candidate waltzes up to The Girl and just asks her out. Confidence (and arrogance being a hairs berth away) is in general an attractive trait in a potential mate. So weather or not this guy is an ACTUAL jerk, The Nice Guy will still label him as such to help ease the pain.

And there ya have it. Again, this is just my opinion. But I hope it can help to shed some light on the situation. I don’t think nice guys are as bad as everyone makes them out to be. Misguided perhaps. But not out-and-out terrible.

Well… maybe this one. 😉


  • Wat
    Posted May 8, 2013 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

    Are you saying that literally every interaction you’ve had with people is transactional? I feel bad for you son. Either you’re ignoring every kind deed someone’s done for you without expecting you to return in kind, or no one has actually done anything nice for you selflessly. Feels bad, man.

  • Prof. Enigma
    Posted May 28, 2013 at 1:42 pm | Permalink

    You make some points. Your intentions are good. But I feel compelled to try and illuminate the other side’s perspective more clearly. Others have been more eloquent than I, but here goes.
    The reward for your time, attention and friendship is the other person’s time, attention and friendship. That’s the prize! It was valuable when you gave it, yes? Same value when reciprocated. Imagine being told that your friendship is valueless, and time spent hanging out with you was time wasted. Kind of a punch in the gut, isn’t it?
    The vending machine analogy has a point. The implication is that if you’re rejected, you just didn’t put in ENOUGH coins. It denies the other person’s choice and preference. The fact is, it’s not THAT kind of transaction. Relationships are give and take, not a purchase. Your actions are not currency any more than the other person’s actions are product. Both people are participants with wants, needs, and investments in the relationship. Denying female romantic and sexual agency is kind of a THING, if you haven’t noticed. So sorry is the state of the world that Pick Up Artists EXIST. Read @pua_txt if you ever need to vomit.
    Guys are encouraged to persevere no matter how many times they are rejected, while girls who pursue at all are “pathetic”. How about an acknowledgement that we too go through disappointment, rejection, awkwardness, shyness? How about we aren’t relegated to being the prize at the end of “coming of age” movies? Then we can talk about cutting Nice Guys some slack. For now, we’re too exhausted. Tired of being vilified for making choices instead of paying out.

    • Posted May 28, 2013 at 8:01 pm | Permalink

      I agree. Women being a prize at the end of films is the lamest thing. I hate that. And what I hate more is the tradition that if a guy asks a girl out, it’s cool but if a girl asks a guy out she’s a slut. Way unfair.

      But again, I see nice guys as people (men AND women) who have romantic intentions for someone but go about it in such a way that it sets them up to fail.

      Remember a few things.
      First: I think all interactions are transactional on some level. If they weren’t we wouldn’t do those things. Even if it’s just for that feeling of self satisfaction, we give and take. I made a post about it explaining in greater detail.

      Second: I decide what my objectives and goals are when I set out to do something. So if I decide that my prize for my actions is going to be a date with a nice lady, then that’s my prerogative. Now, weather or not I succeed is dependent on a great many things but my goals at the beginning are mine to decide.

      The vending machine analogy is meant to explain that we are transactional by nature. In this case it’s not a matter of not having enough coins, it’s a matter of not having the correct currency. No matter how much you do that person is not going to like you for their own reasons. It relates less to how much/how little we did then we’d like to admit. We don’t want to admit we just aren’t what they are looking for. So we say we didn’t do enough.

      Again, I don’t think “nice guys” are as bad as we make them out to be. Some are. But not all.

      • Prof. Enigma
        Posted May 29, 2013 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

        Fair. And you’re absolutely right, we’re all people. Someone who expresses frustration shouldn’t be automatically attacked for it. Still. I guess I’m just wary of making light of the issue or excusing Nice Guys as a group, BECAUSE there are some who aren’t so nice.

        The key is really more open communication and trying to understand each other as human beings. If the other gender isn’t set up as some unfathomable alien, it really helps the whole process along. Right?

        Done philosophizing, I promise! For now 😉 I really appreciate the response.

        • Posted May 29, 2013 at 3:29 pm | Permalink

          I agree wholeheartedly. Just trying to shed some light on WHY they do these things is all.

          And thanks for being a part of the discussion. 🙂