When I posted the link yesterday to the NY Post article about the 300 sandwiches I didn’t include much explanation. The subtext most who read that article will miss is that when the author describes her boyfriend waking up and asking why she hasn’t made him a sandwich yet she is bragging. The article isn’t about a woman slavishly making sandwiches out of fear she won’t get a marriage proposal. She is bragging about how much fun it is to be with her boyfriend and how much she enjoys making sandwiches for him. Don’t picture her waking up each morning dreading her boyfriend asking why she hasn’t made him a sandwich yet; picture her waking up each morning and staying in bed in anticipation of her boyfriend waking up so the delightful game can begin all over again.
The first key to understanding how she can possibly be bragging is recognizing the lie of feminism when it comes to marriage (and other relationships). If feminism made women happy, we’d have a world of delighted women. It doesn’t, and we don’t.
The second key to this is understanding the proper delivery of the punchline. When I was first (formally) learning about Game I struggled to believe that women would actually respond positively to many of the examples offered. What I had to do was imagine a line not as I would assume an evil mean misogynistic gamer to deliver it, and not as my more beta self would deliver it. I started to imagine how my player roommate in college would deliver these lines. If he said it it would be funny. It wouldn’t come off as mean, it would come off as loving. This doesn’t mean that he wouldn’t also mean the embedded request, but that the delivery of the message would almost certainly be enjoyable to the woman.
Game in this sense is very much like humor. If you hadn’t ever heard a particular style of humor and simply read a transcript of someone telling jokes, it very likely wouldn’t be funny. Verbal and written communication are very different, and much can be lost in the translation going either direction. If you’ve never witnessed a couple where the man was playfully teasing his wife (or girlfriend) and she was clearly loving it, it is very difficult to imagine such a thing. However, if you have witnessed this, imagine the husband of that couple delivering lines of Game that have you stumped. Don’t worry about keeping the exact wording, because spoken language isn’t like that. Imagine how this man would say the same thing you just read, only playful, fun, and loving.
Slight changes to wording can at times help a great deal, but understand that this has more to do with personal style than anything. The exchange I quoted is brilliant relationship game. I used the same line on my wife yesterday evening and she loved it, and she is the one who originally found the article. For me the key to delivering a line like this is to add the word “woman”. If I were saying the line in the same context (my wife writing about us waking up and us having the exchange), it would probably go more like:
Each morning, he would ask, “How long you have been awake woman?”
“About 15 minutes,” I’d reply.
“You’ve been up for 15 minutes and you haven’t made me a sandwich?”