Why Insulting Women Works. Wait, You Mean It Works?

Thank god our economy is in such good shape so economists can tackle such topics of national importance as insult-seducer Mystery on VH1's The Pick-Up Artist. No really! Because while you might be tempted to think the "economics" of men insulting women basically boil down to: insulting girls will lead them to believe his "supply" of ready women is sufficient that there is very little "demand" for their services, thereby raising his "price" or something. But apparently it's more complicated than that!

The results showed that men who piled on the insults (particularly those in the "derogating value as partner/mental capacity" group) were far more likely to engage in mate retention behaviors, suggesting that "men's partner-directed insults may be deployed as part of a broader strategy of mate retention."


Which we think means "insulting" is the relationship equivalent of a dude who puts his iPod in a really shitty rubber case and disguises it with crappy black earphones. Almost as transparent!

But this brings us to a good question for you commenters: does this insult shit actually work on anyone? "Witty repartee" is one thing — we don't really do it, but we can see its appeal — but when suitors try to tell us we are, say, "a bad kisser" or that our "perfume smells too much like our B.O." (Yeah, this happened the other day, hah) we generally laugh. That's the point, right?

Freakonomics: The Science of Insulting Women [NY Times]



We're talking about picking up women in bars, not sustaining a mature relationship. In that kind of a setting, the challenge of a disinterested guy is much more appealing than the guy that immediately comes and sits next to you and tries to be charming and schmoozy. Unless he's totally hot that is, but when does that ever happen?