This article originally appeared on thump
A confession: I'm completely useless at talking to boys. I find myself surrounded by confident and beautiful female friends who regularly message me to tell me about the latest famous DJ or band member they've pulled, and I worry that I'll never accrue the levels of confidence they have. I don't think I'm necessarily an unattractive girl or anything like that, but attempting to flirt with boys makes me nervous. Really nervous.
There is some hope, though: according to the internet it's easy for girls to pick up boys. Apparently, all girls require is a combination of fluttering eyelashes, easily-flickable hair and expert grinding capabilities in order to persuade the object of their affection to hop in an Uber with them. On top of that, everyone is always banging on about how easy it is to get free drinks out of boys.
All told, collective wisdom seems to be that there is someone readily available for everyone out there. But not everyone is everyone. What about someone like me? Someone who cringes at the thought of even thinking about considering maybe attempting to try and flirt with a guy in a club?
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I decided to do some research, and turned to the internet's most questionably reliable but straightforward instructional database, Wikihow, to learn how to pull boys at the club. A quick Google led me to Wikihow's "How to Seduce the Hottest Boy in the Club".
The first line of the article asks me, "Are you tired of all your girlfriends getting the hottest guys before you do?" YES, Wikihow! That is definitely me! It was as if the crowd-sourced advice column was speaking directly at me. But would it work in practice? I decided to try Wikihow's instructions on a night out in London, to see if I could actually pull a hot, sexy boy at the club.
Step One: Getting Ready
Shower, shave and moisturise. Easy! What was I to wear, though? Another bit of googling informed me that boys find the little black dress sexy. "Urban Dater" reckons the little black dress is a boy's kryptonite, rendering them a "reverted state of goo". I know I'm not really that experienced in all this, but I assumed that making a boy go gooey is what I was supposed to be aiming for?
Sounded about right, so I matched a little black dress with a bit of black mesh, because London is cold as fuck.
I needed to decide where to go to bag a boy. A quick search of "the best places to pull in London" pointed to a list by Fluid London titled "On The Pull: Top 10 Best Bars & Clubs for Finding Love".
Fluid London reckons that XOYO is a "great place to pull", and as I was already putting my trust in anonymously-produced internet content, I thought I'd follow the theme and head down to the Cowper Street club.
Step Two: Feel Free to Drink Alcohol
YES! I love being drunk! This is something I can do very easily!
I bought myself a pint and smashed it down in the blink of an eye. Then, moving onto the dance floor, foam still dripping from my lips, I surveyed the boys on offer.
Step Three: Check Out the Crowd and Choose a Target
This bit was easy. I saw a boy who was a babe and decided he would be my target for the night.
Step Four: Make Eye Contact
Following Wikihow's instructions, I slowly made my way over to my target – from here on in, I will refer to him as "the target", even though it definitely makes me sound like a member of the "seduction community", i.e. a pick-up artist, i.e. a creep – as he danced with his friends.
Standing beside the target I made sure I was looking right at him and waited until we made eye contact with one another. It's possible that he was slightly unnerved when he turned around to see me staring at him, a saucy smile on my face – but I think I finessed it.
Step Five: Give Him a Glance and Go Over to Talk to Him
I edged my way closer to the hottest boy in the club in an attempt to show him that I was keen. Typically used to finding myself with nothing to say in these situations, I'd done a little bit of homework about cool things to say to boys by searching: "Cool things to say to boys."
I remembered two phrases from my Google search, so approached the target as confidently as possible and began to whisper.
"Come live in my heart and pay no rent," I said to him.
"WHAT?" the target yelled. No dice. I recalled another cool thing to say to boys.
"You hardly find any good-looking boys with brains out there – are you an alien?"
The target looked at me very confused.
Step Six: Control Your Nerves
Shit – he thought I was a weirdo. I was definitely nose-diving and had completely run out of cool, snappy phrases. The nerves were really getting to me, and Wikihow's vague suggestion to "control your nerves" wasn't getting me very far. How exactly, Wikihow, should I control my nerves? Mindfulness? Beta blockers? Please update your guide.
I noticed that the situation had become pretty awkward, and Wikihow suggested that if it feels a bit uncomfortable then I should buy the target a drink. I chose to ignore this tip. No target is worth London's drink prices.
Step Seven: Flirt
Step seven was the last of Wikihow's tips on how to seduce the hottest boy in the club. My flirting skills – as we've established – are weak, so I tried running my hand through my hair. Because… boys… like that? Unfortunately, the target was facing the opposite direction at the time, so this technique was completely useless.
Not long after, the boy and his friends moved away to dance somewhere else. Was this due to my close proximity, wild-eye staring and off-kilter chat-up lines? Possibly. No way of knowing for sure, though.
And so I found myself back where I started. Alone on the dance floor. The tips hadn't explained what to say to my target or, more importantly, how to pull him if we did start talking. They were unspecific and often verged on terrifying. Wikihow sucks. I was left feeling embarrassed, rejected and ashamed. That said, I didn't want to ruin my night, so I reverted to the one step that was working for and modified Wikihow's guide to better suit my needs: step two. Rinse and repeat.