Tucker Max isn’t an asshole anymore.
Then again, you might never have thought he was one, depending on your tolerance for drunken shenanigans, love of stories about anal sex that end with poop-on-penis action or thoughts on the artistic merit of something called ” The Blowjob Follies”
But he is not an asshole anymore. He is 40, married with a kid and a long way away from the self-titled blog that launched him to stardom as one of the founders of the short-lived “fratire” movement.
In fact, Tucker Max is here to help.
At least, that’s how he explains the existence of his new book, Mate: Become the Man Women Want Billed as an exhaustive guide to dating, its lengthy footnotes section and reliance on academic research make it a far cry from Max’s days of hoping there’s Bud Light in Hades.
I caught Max mid-Uber ride on the tail end of a busy day of meetings. He’s been running his own company, Book In A Box, which guides novice writers through the book writing process, for the past several years. He hadn’t set out to write a dating guide until a conversation with co-author and evolutionary psychologist Geoffrey Miller made him realize that, at a time when dating is really as hard as it’s ever been, nobody had ever sat guys down and said, “Hey idiot. Some tips about what you must do.”
“I never realized how little guidance there is for guys about women, sex and dating,” Max said. “As soon as you think about it, you understand there’s nothing on the market that explains this to guys within an ethical, scientific, effective way.”
That first word, “ethical,” may be the key. Max swears the book has nothing in keeping with the glut of PUA guides on the market. Actually, when I ask him his applying for grants individuals behind those written books, he didn’t restrain his contempt.
“Can you consider those dudes are ethical?” he incredulously asks. “It is not ethical and it’s really really not effective. This is the worst part about pick-up artists The stuff they tell guys isn’t even effective, it generally does not work nicely generally. Really the only reason the pick-up artists exist is always to sell marketing to guys. The sad thing is, they exploit guys, not women. Their stuff is terrible, it generally does not work generally. We’re attempting to work as opposite.”
Unlike PUAs, Miller and Max offer general principles, of specific instructions instead. The point is to function as type or sort of guy that women like – a confident, attractive, good person. Negging could easily get somebody’s attention, but you’re still a jagoff every day if you are choosing that strategy – and women detect that
Of course, that’s all from the guy whose entire career is manufactured on a legacy of drunken hookups. He was an idol to the sort of bro who thought ones value being an individual was derived entirely from the amount of orifices they stuck their genitals engrossed. The irony is this business were considering Max’s earlier are helpful tips (which consisted virtually entirely of “Get shtfaced, be funny, have good bros = get ass”), an ordinary thing that horrifies Max in retrospect.
“The idea that you will read an account about me taking a breathalyzer to a bar and getting violently drunk to impress many people I didn’t know as helpful tips to how exactly to grab women , it’s preposterous,” he said.
So promoting this book isn’t the apology tour that most people need to see him make. He’s older and wiser and also probably far richer and happier than he’d have been if he hadn’t chronicled those idiotic escapades. “What goes on is, most media people develop some predetermined narrative and have questions that fit that narrative they will have within their head and any facts that don’t fit, they’ll discard them,” he said. “It is a generalized narrative the media understands of repentance and redemption. That isn’t how it is in my own book. By no means shape or form am I love ‘Oh, I was previously evil and today I’m good.’ There is no original sin.”
Tucker Max used to be an asshole. He isn’t anymore. Or maybe he is. But at the very least, he’s an ethical asshole – and there’s worse things to be for a guy who once wanted to chug in hell.
And the book? It’s a fascinating look at mating and dating from the perspective of a guy who gained fame for doing the former. But Miller’s academic influence gives it some much needed credibility. Any PUA can tell you to just be confident, bro. But this guide comes with accompanying footnotes to academic texts telling you why women like confidence from an evolutionary viewpoint, and what that entails for the human race. Pretty heady stuff for a guy whose biggest goal in life at one point was hooking up with a midget (he succeeded).
Tucker Max isn’t an asshole anymore.