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He's A Nice Guy, but........

The first place you really notice it is in the bars.

As a musician playing clubs and parties, I've had the
opportunity to experience and observe a rather large
slice of life. Virtually every ethnicity and class has
strutted its stuff in front of my stage at one time or
another, and one aspect of life has remained dominant
through all of these varied situations.


Music brings out an interaction between people
that effectively turns any dance floor into a
laboratory. Folks are more themselves when they
dance- uptight and nervous or loose and relaxed-
and they show aspects of their personalities
that are often hidden. And the reason for this?
Romance. Or, at least, the chance of it.

Let's face it. The more we say 'you don't
meet people in bars, the more we go to bars
to meet them. That's because music offers
a possible common ground as a base, meaning
you could maybe meet someone with at least
your taste in entertainment.

Well, that's all well and good and as humanly
normal as can be, but why are the bars still such
a rampant source of romantic miseries?


Now, make no mistake, there are male bimbos, too.
For the sake of brevity, I'd like to take a little
license here and generalize a bit. There are basically
2 eye-catching types of people mixed into the crowd
every night. Both sexes offer us 'Babes' and 'Bimbos'.
(This includes band members and especially lead singers)
Babes are legitimately cool people who happen to be
physically sharp as well. Bimbos are good-looking
schmucks trying to pass themselves off as cool.
'Babes want to meet 'babes', and bimbos want to
meet babes too. So, the two groups used to occupy
each other's time most of the night.

Used to. When I first started performing, I could tell
by the end of the first set where the regular people
where, and it was possible to meet great, normal
women. But things changed over the years. Increasingly,
the 'nice girls' began to want the male 'babes' as well.
( We'll get to the 'nice guys' momentarily.) Coincidentally,
the male 'bimbos' realized how impressed the 'nice girls'
were when they gave them any attention, and that they
usually had money and would get infatuated and part
with it freely. So now, the bimbos rule the floor. The
female bimbos are still after the male 'babes', while the
male bimbos are successfully seducing the 'nice girls'
that the 'nice guys' want to meet.

I know we're never going to shake our emphasis on
physical appearance. It's almost, for lack of a better
term, Darwinian. We are all attracted to something
or someone that we find 'beautiful'. We are more open
to people we consider handsome- we're more generous,
and way more trusting.

So trusting that we suffer a million scams a day
because we 'thought they had an honest face' or a
'sincere voice'.

In my opinion, no one is more vulnerable to this
danger than a single women looking for love. The
male bimbo is searching for exactly that target.
Physical attraction can be very strong, and can
definitely impair judgement for both sexes.
When this happens, people get hurt.

Ah, but what of the nice guy? Well, frankly put,
unless he's visibly rich, he's going home alone
again. He has to rely on an individual circumstance,
-like a spilled drink or finding an earring- to meet
any of the women there. So, he's on the lookout for
a nice girl that he can impress by being himself.
This is always a 'lotto shot' for the nice guy because
he probably isn't as good looking as the babes or bimbos.
He really needs to actually meet a woman as a person.

Dating has always been this way to some extent.
I think we all find ourselves in more than one of these
roles during our lifetime. Throughout history and
eternity, these things happen.

Our current age, though, has really set a new low
for human romantic evolution.

The 'Darwinian' principle I made up earlier is now
visibly applied by mass media throughout the world.
The 'babe' concept has become the cornerstone of
modern arts. Actors especially display and suffer
the fallout of this phenomena. Typecasting by
appearance is the way of the industry, and less-
than-handsome actors must usually play eccentric
or plot-assistive side characters a great deal of
the time. We only see the sub-beautiful in particular
dramatic or comedic instances. We almost never see
the bald guy with glasses get the girl in the end,
unless it's funny. Which brings us to the most
devastating effect of this attitude.

It's funny when the nice guy or girl isn't getting any.

In 20 years time, the response to a 'less-than-beautiful-
person' introducing themself has gone from a smile and a
'hello' to a sneer and 'what a jerk'.

Now, you're saying- that's a rampant generality and you
just have an attitude. Well, yes it is rather general, but I
wouldn't call it an attitude. I'd call it a fear.

You see, I've noticed a marked change in the behavior
of my platonic female friends. Time was, when a woman
was not in a relationship, she would hang out with
girlfriends and platonic male buddies until she met
or started dating someone. The male buddies would
understand and keep their distance unless they were friends
with the new guy too. This has changed.

Now, by my experience, women don't seem to want to be
anywhere near their platonic friends while they are single
and available. Increasingly, when I hear from them, they are
in a relationship. When it ends, they're gone again.

The inference to the nice guy is that she thinks she's wasting
her time hanging out with him while the biological clock is

He knows. He knows he's not cute enough for her. He knows
she'll get hurt, maybe ripped off. He might even know the guy
personally as a 'bimbo', but he knows she won't believe him.

Why? He's a nice guy, but.

Maybe he really loves her, maybe not. Either way, he knows
their friendship is on hold until the new guy moves in. He
knows he'll have to hear about the whole thing as it goes
wrong. Worse, he knows she'll just disappear again as soon
as it's over.

Saddest of all, he knows that she and her girlfriends will
find it hysterical that he's not sleeping with anyone. God forbid
he should have actually asked her out!!! 'He must be totally in
love with her!' He knows he'd be avoided at all costs.

Make this scenario a 'bimbo' guy with a Tom Cruise face
and any woman 20 pounds or more overweight and you have
the exact same deal- 'she's a nice girl, but..'

You see, the whole problem is that this reality is seen
by the public through the eyes of the media, and that media
has a very simplistic view of the world and who's attractive.

We fall for it. We adore the beautiful people they parade in
front of us and we throw our money at them and open our lives
to them at the slightest wink. They know it. The good ones
treat us politely and move on and the bad ones hang out and
pick us clean. Bimbos. They used to be called harlots and gigolos.
They smell the money and the conquest. Our Darwinian nature
yearns to give in.

Well, geez, we should know better by now. We're so scrupulous
of every compliment uttered aloud by the unwanted 'nice person,
but', then open our bank accounts to the harlots and gigolos!

Well, I'll never claim to be a dating authority, and hopefully
you live a life wonderfully devoid of the horrors I've described.
I can only pray that you have. Unfortunately, chances are that
even if you're in a happy relationship, you've still gone through
at least a rough patch of dating, and can relate to some of this.

While I don't think I or anyone will concquer the natural
attraction to sexual beauty, I will say that I'll try to listen
to what's coming out of someone's mouth before I decide on
their voracity because their appearance. I'll try to be
smarter and more patient. After all, I know why we go
through all this- why it's so important. It's more than pride.
More than sexual desire. More then greed. It's more
simple than that.

We're lonely.

And as Hawkeye Pierce once said, 'loneliness is everything it's
cracked up to be'.

copyright 2000 Pegwood Arts all rights reserved 

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