Tucker Max Hangs It Up

There is an interesting article on the Forbes site about the new life of Tucker Max, famous bad boy party blogger. Max has given up his life of nonstop drinking and screwing, leads a lifestyle of health shakes and yoga, has a steady live-in girlfriend, and most significantly has taken up psychoanalysis, and old-fashioned form of psychotherapy pioneered by Sigmund Freud that involves seeing a psychiatrist four of five times a week. He describes his old lifestyle as immature and the product of a bad childhood.

This isn’t too surprising in itself; the fact he isn’t dead already is testament to the strength of his liver. He has milked this for all it’s worth. His first book, “I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell” sold 1.6 million copies; his second, “Assholes Finish First” only 400,000, despite being prominently displayed in every airport in the country. He has another coming out that is supposed to finish his story, but who knows how many people will bother with that.

Frost has accused him of selling out, in a series of articles published at In Mala Fide and his own site. Frost says he was the voice of his generation, but has surrendered due to the needs of political correctness. I think the explanation is much more simple. First of all, Tucker Max is not the voice of his generation. He is just a guy who has a talent for telling funny stories about himself. Having done all he can with that, he seems to be repositioning himself as some other kind of writer, probably along the lines of lifestyle and self-improvement. That’s not to say he doesn’t actually regret his boorish behavior; he has much more self-awareness and decency than guys like him usually have, which is why he’s able to make himself not sound like a complete tool.

There is another thing here though that is much more interesting to me. As sometimes happens in this style of journalism, the author, Michael Ellsberg, makes a side trip into his personal history. He admits to idolizing Tucker Max and his lifestyle of easy, casual sex. He confesses to having spent a lot of money on pick-up seminars, without any success.

He had contacted Max some years ago with the idea that he was going to write an article about pick-up artists, featuring Mystery, some other “gurus” and Max. Max wrote him back, saying he did not consider himself a pick-up artist and declaring himself insulted to be compared with such losers, as he regarded them.

This is true. Tucker Max is not a pick-up artist. He is a natural, which is an entirely different thing. Actually guys like Max aren’t terribly rare. They are not common, but I have known a few and I haven’t had all that much exposure to the world of alpha males. Naturals don’t pick up women, women pick up them. They are usually quite handsome, tall, and athletic, but what is more important is they radiate sexual and social success. Their complete lack of effort and very low level of interest only stokes the fires of the kind of women who go for them- I would say most women feel attracted to them, but only a relatively small percentage throw themselves at them. But that is all it takes to keep them going.

Max’s pride and ego is misplaced. There is nothing admirable about being a natural, because they don’t achieve this status, they just fall into it. Partly they are born that way; it’s substantially genetic, and they have successful experiences with women early and often. How is Max different? He’s very intelligent, and an excellent writer. He has a great sense of humor and story-telling ability. But the reason for his success is that he has a certain sense of shame, which from my experience these guys never have. Their behavior is commonly defined as boorish, selfish, and predatory, but they only see themselves as special people who deserve it all, and the women who have sex with them as lucky. Max understands the typical reader is a bit shocked and appalled, so he adds a bit of rue to defuse the disgust- “Yeah, I can’t believe I’m doing this stuff either. What the hell was I thinking? Best just to laugh at myself, and I invite you to laugh at me too. We’ll all have a good laugh about it.”

Max can take pride in his publishing success, the product of his effort and skill. But his success with women? He did nothing to achieve that. And his contempt for pick-up gurus he should keep for himself. I don’t know if these guys are successful as they say, or can help many guys pick up women. But they have at least some success, and have helped at least some guys. (Notice that Max specifically exempts Neil Strauss, who is a very successful writer and not somebody he needs to have as an enemy.)

There’s nothing wrong with wanting to improve yourself. You need to be skeptical about what anybody is saying; as I have pointed out before, it may not apply generally. The worst people to try to learn from are naturals. They don’t know how they do what they do, because they don’t do anything and are not conscious of anything they do. And as we see from Max’s attitude, they usually regard guys who aren’t slick with women as hopeless losers anyway.

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3 Responses to Tucker Max Hangs It Up

  1. […] – “What Kind of Selection Bias is This?”Omega Man – “Tucker Max Hangs it Up”Fly, Fresh and Young – “Why Do You Want a Girlfriend? Part 1“, “Part […]

  2. doclove says:

    I’m not so sure Tucker Max has shame or guilt. I’m not even sure he has an internal sense that what he is doing is wrong for himself, for the women he slept with or for the torment he put people through for his amusement. I’m not saying he does have these things nor am I saying he doesn’t have these things. I simply don’t know.

    He does have a sense that what he has done is considered wrong by society at large. He is a very bright self-aware man who is more honest than most other autobiographers. He is a decent writer who can tell an entertaining humorous story. He is very socially adept and admits as much in his third book. This is one of the other reasons why his books have done so well. He is never as obvious of a tool as many other men who have lived a lifestyle similar to him.

    If you know how to look and have read Heratiste’s(formerly known as Citizen Renegade formerly known as Roissy) or Roosh etc, then you can even glean advice from his books. Most men should be careful about trying to emulate Max or take advice from him because he is a natural winner with women, always has been, and he knows this. If you read his last book, Hilarity Ensues, you will see the moment in which he decided to take his winning with women up to the next level in his Cancun stories. Most naturals never do this because they are not self aware, socially adept and as bright as he is. Most University of Chicago graduates are nerds socially, but he is not. The University of Chicago is on par with Harvard, Yale, Stanford, Columbia and M.I.T.(Massecheusetts Institute of Technology). Duke is one of the best law schools,top 10, in the USA and he graduated from there too. Most naturals aren’t as bright as him as you can see by me telling you where he went to school.

    • doclove says:

      I’ll add some more. Tucker Max is a University of Chicago bachelors graduate and a Duke Law school graduate. One should always be careful of what he says. Although, he is a self admitted narcissist, he is also extremely manipulative. He seems to be more socially adept than other natural winners with women and he’s much brighter and self aware than they usually are. He has a reputation for being very loyal to his true friends even more so than most other people which is admirable. The problem is if you are not his true friend, you probably should be wary of him. If you are his true friend, you probably need to have a “thicker skin” to deal with him. I’m not saying don’t trust him, but always trust then verify with him which is a Russian proverb which President Ronald Reagan of the USA used in his dealings with the Premeirs of the now defunct Union of Soviet Socialist Republics especially Mikhail Gorbachev.

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