This is not a story of victory. It is a story of failure, defeat, but ultimately, in a cheesy way, redemption. It is the story of how our stupid white male egos were crushed, trashed, and ultimately resurrected in a frail, but perhaps more lasting and real form.
It is the story of the Douchiest Internet Dating coaches.
Me and my best pal, both Caucasian Males, hit Jakarta in our early 30s, me American, him Australian. We had a ball, we played the field, basked in what we thought was the adoration of young women, and lived a playboy lifestyle. Little did we know at the time that our Indonesian friends were secretly laughing at us. They were laughing at our vanity, how we got played, and the mercenary and cold nature of the women who approached us.
There was also another side. Jakarta, like so many other global metropolises, is a place where people come to chase their dreams. Many of the girls we thought adored us were simply looking to trade up what they thought was a piece of the American or Australian dream after years of conditioning by movies and TV.
They needn’t have worried. Reality quickly hit. The global financial crisis drove us both back to our home countries. We lost our high-flying six-figure jobs. We went back to either small towns or small corners of big cities.
And that’s when reality hit. Suddenly we weren’t 29 or 33. We were ten years older, hitting middle age, with beer-bellies, no hair and a bank account drained by a decade of fancy living we couldn’t afford. In vain, we tried to hit the local bars, replicating in our mind what were the successes of the previous decade. We hit on 22-year olds. They looked at us as if we were sex offenders. We e-mailed friends across the world, Iceland, London, Washington DC., all Jakarta alumni and they all told the same story: UB40, as the band name goes.
Not to be deterred, we dug deep. Someone mentioned a 2000 movie called the ‘Tao of Steve,” which offered alluring promises. The Tao of Steve suggested there was a technique to the whole thing. We took it further. We delved into the Internet and discovered an entire corpus of teachings on how to get babes, starting with YouTube with titles like “How to land the woman of your dreams.”
Certain themes emerge from these Douchebag coaches. Most of it you could’ve got from your Uncle (if you were lucky enough to have a functional one): be confident. Be a gentleman. Be chivalrous, even if feminist websites like Magdalene tell you it’s dead and chauvinist. Beyond such self-obvious platitudes were a plethora of little schemes, stratagems and tricks that ultimately just failed badly.
My buddy in DC tried the tricks at bars and nearly had security (doormen) called on him multiple times. One pal in London got clocked by a jealous boyfriend. As for me, the women I was interested in were all too smart for my cheap little Internet tricks.
“You’ve been reading stuff from the pick-up community, haven’t you,” said one woman, who was obviously wise to the game. “Yeah, I read about that.”
Another one said, “Yeah, yeah, you’re gonna start off trying to be charming and then act aloof and cold. I got it.”
Eventually, I started to wizen up and did the growing up in three months I should’ve taken 10 years to do. I signed up to an online dating site. I dated women my own age. Most of them were battle-weary single Moms looking for a companion. And while they were kind, they were quite realistic about the practicalities of marriage.
“I’m sorry,” said one, “you’re unstable emotionally and financially. I need a more together man around my kids.”
She was right. Several others have said the same thing. So that’s where I’m at right now. Some of my ex “Keong Racun” (poison snail or dirtbag buddies), have similar stories. Some of them have done well. I’m just taking it one date at a time.
So, in such a spirit, I offer you: The Internet’s Douchiest Dating Coaches.
5. Coach Corey Wayne
Is as cheesy as a plate of Tex-Mex Tacos. He comes across as a “nice guy,” exactly the kind of man he teaches his acolytes not to be with women, and is a student of uber-charlatan self-improvement guru Anthony Robbins.
Corey offers tips on “how to get your ex back,” and “indifference makes the difference with women.” He says, like Mr. Darcy of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, you should affect an air of cool standoffishness, albeit mixed with a playful flirtatious demeanor.
I tried it. It didn’t work. Corey also advises men to assume, “all women want them.” To his credit, he also says that “nine out of ten women won’t be interested.” On the upside, such an approach – like my 100:1 strategy in college: approach 100 and you’ll get one yes – builds resilience and staying power.
4. Marni the Wing Girl
Marni wins the douche award for advertising her services as teaching men to “get any woman they wanted.” Marilyn Monroe? Cleopatra? Actually, I’d settled for Rachel Weisz or J.Lo, but they’re both taken.
Marni breaks down the dating and mating game from a woman’s perspective. She tells us women “test” men in a range of ways, subtly probing their self-confidence with little putdowns, and, again, offering the stock advice of “be confident.”
Unfortunately, her whining voice is a little annoying, and, in the end, all of Marni’s games just got me blown off by bar-woman’s girlfriends. To her credit, Marni claims to be “honest” with men, “calling them on their bullshit,” etc. etc. In the end, though, Marni is just trading off the fantasies of lonely, unsuccessful men (like me), and thus wins douchebag number four award.
3. Stephan Erdman
German actor Stephan Erdman isn’t such a bad guy. His V-neck T-shirt, combined with a blazer jacket and production of videos on how to turn off women with creepy body language, lands him as number 3 douchebag.
Like Marni, he tells men they needn’t worry about their looks; women will like them for just being them (yeah, sure Stephan). In this clip, he advises on “How to be Attractive to Women if You’re Not Good Looking” (we don’t see too many dowdy or ugly movie stars). He also expounds on the “tests” women give men. For us it was, “oh, so you spent 10 years in Southeast Asia – you must be a whoremonger.”
2. Doc Love
Any one who calls themselves “Doc Love,” with cousins called “Sal the Fish Love,” is asking for a douche rating. Doc claims to watch out for men and help them avoid gold-diggers, psychos and manipulators with a set of principles he calls “The System.”
Doc’s “System” includes “the reality factor” (is she into you or not? Watch her actions), being a “challenge” (Doc was one of Coach Corey Wayne’s early mentors), and not being a “nice guy” or doormat.
Unfortunately, Doc crams a complex set of human emotions, motivations and dating and mating behavior in a set of one-line magazine platitudes ultimately designed to see his book. (Incidentally, you can rip it off Piratebay, but Magdalene does not condone illegal behavior). In the end, Doc’s staying power in the dating advice game and annoying poodle wins him a number 2 douchebag rating.
1. Jason Capital
Jason is without a doubt the biggest dating douche on the Internet. He espouses swagger, arrogance, and an annoying Long Island accent combined with a hoodie and possibly a major coke habit. “Yo what’s going on,” he greets us, “it’s Jason FUCKING Capital.”
He offers advice on “how to be the cool guy on campus,” and “how to let go and let fvck in.” Capital’s biggest douchebaggery lies in blending gangsta rap with neuro-linguistic programming or NLP, one of the creepiest and most annoying self-help movements of the last 20 years. One of my bros actually tried Jason’s techniques at a bar in DC. Sadly for him, he tried it on sophisticated, Ivy-League educated women, whom he lost at the first “Yo!”.
So there you have it Magdalene Readers. Our take on the Douchiest dating coaches online. Try it at home – just not when out on a date.
About Barry Dwight
Barry Dwight was a business consultant in Jakarta from 2005-2012. He enjoyed his time in Indonesia, but wishes he spent more of it enjoying cultural pursuits and visiting Majapahit temples than trawling bars in Blok M. Numerous Indonesian colleagues at the time warned him he was wasting his time here. Now, stuck in small-town America, single and aged 43, he agrees with them. This article is his atonement.