A while ago, I met a Canadian girl on the subway.
I walked into the train and went straight for the long-haired cutie with a round face I’d spotted before the doors had even separated. I left only one seat between us, despite the fact that the train car was near-empty. Fortunately, she had her face buried in a book, so she didn’t seem to notice.
After pretending to check my phone and rifle through my gym bag for a couple of minutes, I started up a conversation about the book she was reading—alleviating my aching curiosity if it was “any good.” I chatted her up over the next several stops and got her number before we walked in opposite directions at the station. She was a sweetheart, and I couldn’t help but notice that her warm eye-contact and smile had improved my mood—a rarity. I admit I was sort of hopeful that she’d text me back after my strict adherence to the 2.5-days-and-not-expressing-any-interest-beyond-transactional-plan-making texting rule.
She did. We went out to a local bar, where I bought us a round of beers, for which she thanked me twice. At a point during that beer, I ran to the bathroom. When I returned, she was looking out the window instead of her phone. After a single round, we went to my nearby apartment for a second one. It wasn’t long after our arrival there that I learned she had boyfriend back in Canada. Irritated, I asked her why she hadn’t seen fit to tell me earlier. She responded that it was because she’d normally “be very interested in getting to know [me].” But, despite this and my best efforts, I couldn’t get more than a closed-lip peck on the front of my face from her—a nothing-move she said made her “feel really-really guilty” anyway. I talked to her a little longer, while ushering the conversation in a way that would get her out the door. I had jerking off to do, and TV to watch, and she seemed a little antsy to leave after the minor physical contact we’d had.
Partly from reflex and partly from the faint smell of blood in the water, I spit out the throw-away line, “we should do this again, though,” as she was putting on her shoes. She replied more enthusiastically than I expected with, “Yeah, I’m going back to Canada for the weekend, but after that for sure!” On the way out, she thanked me for the additional beer I’d given her out of my fridge.
We got together a second time not long after she returned. Judging by the noticeable change in her attitude toward contact—and freshly groomed cooch—two things had likely happened: she’d dropped the boyfriend and had pre-meditated our bang. Whatever the case, the sex greatly exceeded my expectations.
It’s important to note that this girl knew that I wasn’t going to be her boyfriend. For one, she was going back to Canada—for good this time—a few weeks later. A recent college graduate, this was little more than an extended trip to visit some family. Secondly, she never brought it up or even intimated it in any oblique way. Yet, over the coming weeks, she’d do nice things that I can’t remember encountering in the US, at this—or any—stage of a non-formal relationship. When we’d confirm plans, she’d add something like “looking forward to seeing you!” She’d admit to things that no American girl ever does, “I was telling my mom about how interesting you are the other day!” She dressed stylishly, even when she was coming over to “just watch a movie.” She’d sometimes spend the night, other times she’d excuse herself and go home.
One time, I had to postpone her visit to my apartment by a half-hour because I was trying to meet a deadline on a project. She replied with this text:
Wow, that’s late! Kidding. I’ll bring some snacks to help you relax.
She walked in the front door with a cranium-sized bowl of homemade guacamole, an equally large bowl of homemade salsa, a giant bag of organic corn chips, and a six pack of imported beer. The guacamole was so good that I asked her for the recipe. And, I make Mexican food regularly. Who was this girl?
She went back to Canada without a single tear or ounce of drama. She’d never been clingy or crazy. The closest thing was when she said “keep in touch,” while writing down her e-mail address on the last day I saw her. Right after that, she handed me a new toothbrush in the packaging. “Here, it’s to replace the one you gave me the first night I stayed over.” It was the same brand and model.
In the ensuing days and weeks, I experienced an unfamiliar feeling. It took me a while to figure it out, but I eventually identified it as kinda-missing-her. Canada Girl had tenderized me with her sweetness. She’d known exactly what to do, and executed it to perfection. Even though I knew what she’d done, it didn’t reduce its effectiveness. She’d cracked my hard exterior.
Canadian girls (non-French) are known for being a lot like American girls—in all the wrong ways. So, as far as I could tell, this girl acted like girls I—and guys I know who have traveled more—mostly encounter outside of the English-speaking world. She’d been supremely feminine, but unafraid or awkward around a man. She had tact, never once flaunting her sexual past with masculine pride. She demonstrated her domestic skills by using them, instead of just boasting about them. She’d been nurturing, when she accurately ascertained it was called for. She never claimed to be too busy to see me—even though she actually had a lot going on. She displayed enthusiasm about seeing me. She never over-stayed her welcome, or made herself at home. She thanked me—even over-thanked me—for everything.
In short, this girl had game.
Guys who spend time abroad talk about how the girls—everything else being equal—are more feminine or more wholesome or more old-fashioned or just plain “better.” But what they’re not saying is that much of this basically amounts to “game.” Girls with girl-game, simply told, know how to get (and, by extension, often keep) a man with more than dangling the quickly consumed new-pussy carrot.
Not long after Canada Girl left, I went out with a series of (American) girls who were a fairly typical sampling of my previous talent pool. The juxtaposition made the differences all too plain to ignore.
On one first date, I asked a girl where she’d gotten her colorful scarf. She answered, “My last boyfriend was Turkish. I went to Turkey with him all the time and got it there.” Another girl proudly announced that she was a “Microwave Queen” when I showed her my expensive French cookware, bragging that she made “kick-ass [boxed] mac-and-cheese.” Yet another girl—granted, I met her online—tried to schedule our first date two weeks out, because she had “several other dates [that] week.”
This kind of thing continued, girl after girl.
When—after a heated first-date make-out session—I went to remove one girl’s already-unbuttoned jeans, she blurted out, “I’m not having sex with you on the first whatever-this-is. That keeps happening and I don’t feel good about that pattern.” Another girl, with whom I had had sex on the first date, came back for the second with a confession that—over the recent extended holiday weekend—she’d “had a little too much to drink,” had sex with someone else, and was now “just trying to figure it all out.”
In those weeks, I never once got a thank-you for the first rounds of drinks that I bought, for the top-shelf alcohol they were served at my house, for the contact-lens solution, for the brie-cheese-on-crostini, or for anything else. I never once got a trace of feminine sweetness in a text, or otherwise. These girls resolutely hid any sign of interest or vulnerability, beyond whatever was implied in the course of physical intimacy. And, they certainly never replaced anything I’d given them. I got sex. And that’s all.
There’s a myth that game is only for men, but there’s a whole universe of game for women that American girls were either never taught by their mothers, or willfully refuse to learn. It’s basically a dead language in America. There’s a myth that a girl just has to “look cute” and show up, and that there’s little more to getting a quality guy than playing musical man-chairs until you land on the “right” dick. My story proves otherwise.
There’s also a myth that American men have no game when, in reality, American women are even worse.
Read More: “You Didn’t Have To Make Things Awkward”