Let’s be honest: Bars are a waste of time.  Once you’re past 25 years of age, and you’re still often frequenting bars and clubs, you are wasting your time.  I write this with the presupposition that you’re an ambitious person, and if you read my blog, you probably are.  I still go to bars too often, even if it’s just ONCE per week, it’s still too much, I believe. 

 There is the inherent problem.  It’s a matter of conditioning, knowing where the bounty is.  If you’re a pirate, you hit certain parts of the Ocean to take your loot; If you’re a religious organization, you prey on people’s desperation and naiveté, and if you’re a guy looking for a gathering of women in abundance you hit the bars.

 On the one hand, you deal with a population that comprises of 80% scumbags, all gender inclusive, especially if they’re over the age of 25.  Scumbag is a strong word for it.  I have a lot of acquaintances in the South Bay who hit the bars all the time, and they’re not bad people.  They’re just retired frat boys as I’ve alluded to before on this blog.  They’re some of the “Good people” of the bar.  On the other hand, that’s where the sexy dressed women are.  It’s what my buddy Jon calls the battle of brain versus penis, and in my opinion, depending on how much testosterone you have as individual male, the battle becomes very one sided.

 It’s similar to the line in “Dog Day Afternoon.”  Upon being asked, “Why are you doing this,”  Al Pacino’s character, Sonny, who is robbing a bank replies with a thick Brooklyn accent: “Why?  Because they got money here.”  (Seriously, if you haven’t seen “Dog Day Afternoon,” you need to get a copy and watch is ASAP. Great movie.  Make it a date night.)   

 That dynamic applies to bars and clubs.  “They got pussy here” is what Sonny would have said. The dynamic is further compounded by the fact that I can go to any bar anywhere, and pretty much talk to anyone I want, and I actually do that.  Sometimes it goes well and sometimes not so great, but I don’t have issues approaching and striking conversations with strangers. 

 Most people in bars are onlookers.  90% of men stand around and stare wishing they could to women.  They stare, they hover around in close proximity, and even some guys who are good reply on getting pretty wasted on alcohol before they start accosting the women. 

 Yet, it doesn’t change the fact that it’s a waste of time to go so often.  A buddy of mine, (a now retired dating coach) used to argue that bars are just for social people who are extraverted.  Well, perhaps, but using that logic, you can conclude that it’s a place for people who enjoy paying 6 to 7 dollars for a beer.  (If you’re reading this in Iowa, yes, that’s how much a beer costs in LA or NY.)

 There are social instances where it’s an occasion to go to see your pals.  You could go to a bar to see a basketball/football game on TV while having a few brews, and you may go to shoot pool and relax.  The chief goal of why guys go to nightclubs is to meet girls.  Let’s not mask that.  The primary reason why women go is not to get laid, although some are open to possibility.  Despite that paradox, it’s the place where alcohol mixes with bimbos and douchebags and the results sometimes produce something possibly even worse than Bill O’Reilly.

 Back in the Project Hollywood days, I used to go quite often. We all did.  That was 2004.  We didn’t even drink much.  It was some weird sport almost.  These days, (last few years included) I go once a weekend, (sometimes twice).  Though I may skip a weekend here or there, it’s pretty consistent.  Now, like anything else, it has become conditioned.  The weekend rolls around and you start making plans where to go.  It’s Fri or Sat night and you  feel like you should be out somewhere.

 I had this conversation with Stephen Nash when he was out here visiting.  He and I used to be “Wingmen” quite often back in the old Project Hollywood days, and we did pretty well for ourselves.  Stephen is also a naturally extraverted guy who is social and into the performing arts, so we can relate to each other well.  He issued a challenge and said, “What if you didn’t go to bars anymore for 2 months?  Just as an experiment to see what’d happen.  What have you got to lose?”   

He has a good point and part of me wanted to argue with him, but I knew that he was right.  I am going to guess that for a lot of guys reading the blog, there is a reaction of “What’s the big f**king deal?”  For a lot of guys staying home is actually easier than going out to a night spot.  For me, it’s the opposite. 

 So, I am taking 2 months off.  I’ll go out with friends but not to bars.  Only exception may be a birthday party but my close friends don’t have birthday parties at bars.  The only other exception is if someone actually manages to somehow talk me into coaching him “In-field” which is something I don’t do much anymore, and something I don’t even like doing.   

 Coaching is part of the problem.  That’s how a major part of  this began:  When you do live “In-field” coaching, part of you feels like you should be out there keeping your cold-approach skills sharp.  That’s another contributing factor.   In an industry filled with charlatans and liars, the pressure even mounts on more.  You feel like you’re one of the few honest people who needs to carry the burden.

 I’ve met everything from guys who are just unsocial but savvy marketers, to the socially weird, to creepy, to those who have no friends, to those who leverage their position in the porn industry, to those whose primary source of sex is paying for it!  I’ve met them all.   And hey, I am not judgmental on hiring hookers, but you really shouldn’t be giving dating advice if that’s your method.   That’s like a guy giving you advice on how to be a successful farmer, and he only gets all his fruits and vegetables at the local giant supermarket chain.  Something’s amiss.

 So, that’s how it sort of all started and now it has become habit.  Like anything else in life, you do it long enough, and it becomes part of your daily/weekly routine.  It’s an important key factor to recognize!  You can condition yourself with new habits constantly.  It’s the first few weeks that tough.  Be it going to the gym, be it doing a certain activity, whatever…

 So now I’ve started to implement a new habit.  For the months of April and May, no bars or clubs on Weekends. (And obviously, I don’t go on weeknights anyway.)   Everything else is acceptable.  House parties are allowed.  Dates are OK. Movies are fine, and heck if I have to sit home and read a book, watch a Lakers game or type out a Blog post on a Friday night, that’s fine too.  Just no Bars or clubs of any kind.  This is not particularly easy for an extrovert who would rather socialize with random people than just “Chill out” alone at home.

 Last night was the first test.  Friday afternoon, a buddy of mine called up and said he was going to some place in Orange County (which I rarely venture to.)  He had a “Hook up” at some place where he knew the promoters and could get us in easy.  “It’s supposed to be great, etc, etc..” 

 Didn’t go.  Don’t plan to either.  The decision has been made.   60 days, no bars, and I’ve extended that to places that bar people would hang out.  So no hanging out for too long a period at a house party where there are a plethora of people that you’d see at the bar any other night…   (who many times end up leaving the house party to go to the bars around midnight anyway.) 

 Let’s see how this experiment turns out…….  Stay tuned.