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Hey Woody,

I’m 28, reasonably good-looking, I work out, I’m well-read, drive a good car, have a good job, blah, blah, blah. So why can’t I bag any guys? I’m not interested in one-night stands. I want dates, not tricks. Whenever I meet someone I try to be as impressive as I can. I try to do everything right: I say cool things, I try to figure out what the guy wants to hear. If I say something he doesn’t like I backpedal and change what I said to better suit his tastes. Clearly I’m not trying hard enough because Saturday nights might as well be Monday nights for all the dates I’m getting. What am I doing wrong? How can I be impressive enough to get the guys I want?

– Ready to impress or implode

Hey Woody,

I’m 28, reasonably good-looking, I work out, I’m well-read, drive a good car, have a good job, blah, blah, blah. So why can’t I bag any guys? I’m not interested in one-night stands. I want dates, not tricks. Whenever I meet someone I try to be as impressive as I can. I try to do everything right: I say cool things, I try to figure out what the guy wants to hear. If I say something he doesn’t like I backpedal and change what I said to better suit his tastes. Clearly I’m not trying hard enough because Saturday nights might as well be Monday nights for all the dates I’m getting. What am I doing wrong? How can I be impressive enough to get the guys I want?

– Ready to impress or implode

Dear Ready,

Sorry, I’m with all the guys who turned you down. I’d rather crawl through broken glass and dive into a pool of acid than listen to some pompous ass like you.

I have two words of advice: STOP TRYING. Okay, two more: SO HARD.

Studies have proved over and over that 80% of communication is non-verbal. You, Math Whiz, are putting all your marbles on the other 20%.

When you intentionally try to impress a guy here’s what they’re thinking:

a. “This guy’s an egomaniac.”

b. “He’s not comfortable enough around me to act normal.”

c. “He’s insecure.”

d. “He clearly doesn’t read Woody’s column.”

Trying to impress someone usually has the opposite effect. Instead of getting in your pants they fly out the door. Here’s my advice:

Don’t be impressive, be impressed

That means shut your pie-hole, listen and be interested in what your prey has to say. Or do what I do and PRETEND to be interested in what they say. You do that with “conversation helpers” –they’re basically “feel” and “tell” questions. Like, “Tell me why…” or “How did you feel when…”.

Flirt

Take the simple question of “What do you do for a living?” You can answer “I’m in P.R.” and make it sound like you’re good at getting publicity or you can say “I’m in P.R.” and make it sound like you’re good at giving head. Get the book “Superflirt,” by my good friend and co-host of Sex Inspectors, Tracey Cox. It’s packed with useful body language tips to tip him in your favor.

Joke

When you notice his drink is almost empty, go get two drinks, come back looking horrified, and say, “Yikes, there’s my A.A. counselor—hold one of these for a minute, will ya?” Be playful. Make them laugh and you’re halfway up their leg.

Walk Away

The best way to keep their interest is to keep them guessing. Excuse yourself to say hello to and hope to hell there’s a friend nearby. Keep them guessing and you’ll keep them interested. Always come back of course, and always with a quip or a compliment

Mirror

Match their body movements and you’ll establish more rapport. Echo his head tilts, nods and facial expressions. But be careful. You don’t want to be too deliberate because he’ll think you’re ridiculing him. So if he curls his fingers around the stem of his wine glass, put yours on the base—that way you’re not “aping” him.

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