"nice guys" finish last


The article I’m about to point you to, 6 Harsh Truths That Will Make You a Better Person, really needs to be circulated, and circulated widely, for the benefit of men.  I say “for men” because most women don’t actually need to hear it.  Women, in general, have known for centuries you need to bring skills to a relationship.  Those skills can be anything from cooking well to cleaning house well to raising children well to looking great to giving a really good blowjob, but when push comes to shove, those are all skills, and women have them, work at them, and know you have to have them.

The people who don’t appear to know you need to have them are men.  Which is why you don’t see a bunch of women sitting around whining about how men don’t date nice women — but you see a crapload of guys sitting around whining saying just that:  “Women don’t date nice guys.”

Putting aside the fact an awful lot of guys I have heard say that are actually shitheads and not “nice” at all, and the fact guys bitching about men with money getting all the dates — yes, that guy brings a skill to the table, he can take a woman to nice restaurants — or that men with looks get all the dates — that is another skill set, taking care of the bod and appearance, a skill set that is in large part lost on the male inhabitants of Austin, delicate cough — these guys seem to think being “nice” just means, well, you don’t black your girlfriend’s eye on Friday night.

Bad news guys.  If the only skill set you bring to the relationship table is “I won’t give you a black eye,” you have a ways to go.  So here for your benefit:



~ by David Wong


2014, motherfuckers. Yeah! LET’S DO THIS.


Feel free to stop reading this if your career is going great, you’re thrilled with your life, and you’re happy with your relationships. Enjoy the rest of your day, friend, this article is not for you. You’re doing a great job, we’re all proud of you. So you don’t feel like you wasted your click, here’s a picture of Lenny Kravitz wearing a gigantic scarf.


For the rest of you, I want you to try something: Name five impressive things about yourself. Write them down or just shout them out loud to the room. But here’s the catch — you’re not allowed to list anything you are (i.e., I’m a nice guy, I’m honest), but instead can only list things that you do (i.e., I just won a national chess tournament, I make the best chili in Massachusetts). If you found that difficult, well, this is for you, and you are going to fucking hate hearing it. My only defense is that this is what I wish somebody had said to me around 1995 or so.


#6. The World Only Cares About What It Can Get from You

Let’s say that the person you love the most has just been shot. He or she is lying in the street, bleeding and screaming. A guy rushes up and says, “Step aside.” He looks over your loved one’s bullet wound and pulls out a pocket knife — he’s going to operate right there in the street.

“OK, which one is the injured one?”

You ask, “Are you a doctor?”

The guy says, “No.”

You say, “But you know what you’re doing, right? You’re an old Army medic, or …”

At this point the guy becomes annoyed. He tells you that he is a nice guy, he is honest, he is always on time. He tells you that he is a great son to his mother and has a rich life full of fulfilling hobbies, and he boasts that he never uses foul language.

Confused, you say, “How does any of that fucking matter when my [wife/husband/best friend/parent] is lying here bleeding! I need somebody who knows how to operate on bullet wounds! Can you do that or not?!?”

Now the man becomes agitated — why are you being shallow and selfish? Do you not care about any of his other good qualities? Didn’t you just hear him say that he always remembers his girlfriend’s birthday? In light of all of the good things he does, does it really matter if he knows how to perform surgery?

In that panicked moment, you will take your bloody hands and shake him by the shoulders, screaming, “Yes, I’m saying that none of that other shit matters, because in this specific situation, I just need somebody who can stop the bleeding, you crazy fucking asshole.”


12 Responses to “nice guys” finish last

  1. This is The Best “self help” article I’ve read in a very long time. Thank you so much for posting. Back to work. “…ABC. AIDA…Close or hit the bricks…”

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  3. Max

    I do not think it is advice you directly need, Miss. I think you “do” every day. I just do not think you recognize everything you do all the time. [wry smile]

  4. Your post inspired, gave a perspective of strength that I needed to hear. Though the post may have been directed toward men, it applies this female, too. I should have realized a LONG time ago that I can change only myself. (Tired of waiting, turning my own boat around.) Many thanks…. <3

  5. I don’t think the article you’re citing is particularly insightful about the issues plaguing men who are sneeringly labeled “nice guys” by certain pundits.

    In fact, as a description of human relationships, David Wong’s article is pretty toxic, and tends to reinforce the male stoicism that is a symptom of the patriarchal gender oppression of men. I agree with what David says on some level, in that, yes, people are fundamentally selfish, and that’s OK. However, there’s a big difference between ‘enlightened self interest’ — which in its best expression is when we find joy and delight when people we care for are happy — and sociopathy. David does not appear to understand that distinction.

    In fact, he enshrines as his ‘hero philosopher’ a shallow, greed-driven, narcissistic, homophobic asshole who clearly hates men (i.e. the Alec Baldwin character from Glengarry Glen Ross). That should be a big red flag to anyone thinking David is genuinely empathizing with the men he’s claiming to ‘advise.’ (If you have trouble grasping what I’m saying here, imagine a gender-switched scene, where a Christina Ricci ‘teacher’ berates a room full of average women to “slim down to a size 4 or go home to your cats, you fat dykes!”)

    Sadly, David is not alone in his inability to genuinely empathize with average men. It is precisely that culture-wide hostility to male vulnerability which is a key component of what “nice guys” struggle with. They see — and often have applauded — the emergence of women from the confines of outdated sex roles. But when it comes to dating, they find that (in America at least) men are still by and large relegated to a gender role which places the burden of explicit initiation and (for average men) frequent overt rejection on men … a burden that’s made much more problematic by women’s apparent preference for men who are socially dominant.

    A commenter at Feminist Critics, Aleknovy, had some interesting points about this phenomenon in this comment. (His wording is a bit ‘undiplomatic,’ but clearly that’s not an issue for you, Max.) He was responding to a post I wrote about feminine hypergamy, which is also relevant to the situation confronting “nice guys.”

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  7. I’m not sure why you haven’t released my previous comment from moderation, Max. Links? Length? Disagreement? I think a conversation about this could be worthwhile, so I’ll try once more.

    There is a lot that could be said about your endorsement of David Wong’s disturbingly popular post, which in some ways, is just an extreme version of our industrialized/capitalist attitudes towards emotional vulnerability and need. We hate it in males — starting from a very young age. We aren’t exactly thrilled about it in women, but the interpersonal space we allow women to express vulnerability and need is vastly larger than the space we grant to men. It is precisely in that larger space that women are able to develop the deep and authentic friendship bonds that most men lack.

    In short, the greater permission to be emotionally vulnerable that we extend to women is an arena of female privilege. By berating men for their relative lack of people “skills” without acknowledging that males are much less likely to receive the emotional nurturance and tolerance that facilitate the ability of women to develop those skills, you’re displaying a real lack of understanding of the social reality facing the men you’re scolding.

  8. Max

    I had not released the post because I had not seen it yet. I don’t check the blog daily.

    I think you’re missing the point of Wong’s statement. It’s not about vulnerability. It’s about “doing” rather than self labeling. “I’m nice” is an adjective. “I volunteer at an animal shelter” is an action.

  9. Max

    Jeez, I just checked out your post over on the other blog. A blog post that claims to be a “no hostility” zone is getting a little hostile slamming me with labels like “ignorant.” Playing a little fast and loose with your own rules there, aren’t you? There’s no way I’m walking into that.

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  11. Reblogged this on bletebzz and commented:
    Interesting…And yes, I will try to keep my resolutions this year

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