CLASSIC CHARM is a video essay series analyzing the world’s most charming men throughout history to help make you better with the fairer sex.
As I spent a moment going over a popular pickup artist’s hidden camera footage of him meeting a girl off the street and soon thereafter bringing her into a public bathroom for sex, then watching him comment on his experience saying that most men would be pussies by only getting this woman’s phone number, and a real man goes for the “same night lay”, I am conversely met with Aziz Ansari’s excellent first episode of the second season of his Netflix show, “Master Of None.” In it, Aziz charms a woman and after dinner and ice cream, sees her off. They plan a date for the weekend, and just as Dev (Aziz’s character) is about to kiss her (which she is noticeably hoping for), he tells her he’d rather wait to do it this weekend when he’s not feeling that drunk.
Was Dev a pussy for doing this? Does it look like he didn’t go further because he wussed-out? Or maybe this was something else.
I learned a quote some years ago, “The weak rush. The strong take their time and poke-about.”
The real answer to the wussed-out question is big to me but sounds inconsequential on the surface: Dev simply has nothing to prove.
He doesn’t have his arms around this gorgeous girl because he wants to tell his friends how quickly he was able to get her to say yes. He’s with this girl because he likes women. Let’s explore that phrase. “Likes women.” Do your douchebag acquaintances or pickup artists actually like women? I don’t know. I think they like impressing people. I think they like proving themselves they can accomplish what they previously thought was impossible. There’s a difference. One is about conquering and validation. The other is about the simple but fulfilling enjoyment of a relationship. It’s not that Dev doesn’t enjoy random, no strings attached sex, he does. It’s not that he’s scared of moving the interaction forward on the first night, he’s completely capable of that as we’ve seen in the show’s first ever episode. It’s what Aziz’s character lacks: A need to impress.
Aziz is more interested in the dynamic I also hold in high regard in my relationships with women: Chemistry. That juicy, yummy, perfect “clicking” feeling you get when you meet that right person. And the more time we spend with someone, the more time we have for that chemistry to brew.
Dev knows this. Dev would rather stretch the tension out and build some excitement between each other. He knows the pay off is that much better than a random bang an hour or so after meeting someone. That feeling of built-up chemistry holds light-years more fun and excitement than the former.
Once the initial exotic high wears off, sex with strangers just isn’t so exciting anymore. I personally think it’s child’s play compared to the adventure of building chemistry and an eventual real relationship with a woman—no matter how short-lived.
And with Dev, who is really just a modified version Aziz Ansari’s own self, I believe is providing all of us with a master’s course on exactly how to do that using Master Of None as his master stroke.
With this show as his medium, Aziz Ansari is paving the way for the modern idea of what it means to be a charming gentleman.
Let me explain.
Do you ever, for a second, see Dev straying from the exact person that makes him so Devvy in the first place? Is there ever a moment where you see him sacrificing who he is in order to further his approval with the female gender?
No. And here is the biggest thing you’re going to learn from our tiny friend. Dev is so goddamned happy with who he is that he knows that his personality can move mountains. And it does. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
Let’s take this simple interaction between him and the adorable Brit he invited to his lonely birthday dinner.
Notice how instead of suppressing his quirky inclinations (as I used to do), he instead sees it as his strongest tool for meeting the right people. Dev knows that though his unique personality might prove to be unattractive to 90% of the women of the world, he knows that last 10% are going to absolutely adore him. And many of which are going to be just as attractive to him as they are to them. And let’s think about it: 1 out of 10 ain’t bad.
Dev knows that no matter how hard he might try, there is no changing his tiny little nerdy character that is him. Making himself more macho or alpha isn’t going to convince anybody. And it’s just going to disappoint the women who really like that unique side of him.
Dev’s personality is also his best tool for finding the exact type of women he’d like to meet. Dev is a caring, sweet, hilarious, cultured, talented individual. The more he shines that side of him, the more beautiful caring, sweet, hilarious, cultured, talented women are going to come out of the woodwork. Further, all of the gorgeous, rude, unfunny, ignorant, uninteresting, superficial women will know to stay as far away as possible from him.
If Dev was convinced he had to put on anything other than who he is to people, he’d be in a world of more frustration and confusion then he already is (Hey little buddy, I can help you out there—stay away from online dating!!).
Onto moving mountains. Throughout the course of the second season, Dev builds a relationship with Francesca, a woman who works with him in this little Italian kitchen. And for the longest time, nothing intimate ever happens between the two. If anyone else were to analyze the relationship between Dev and Francesca, I’ll bet they would say that Dev is going about it all wrong. That you need to either shit or get off the pot. And from afar, it looks like Dev is doing neither. Francesca, despite already being in a long-term relationship, is putting out all of the traditional signals that say, “Make a move!” But that is the number one reason for Dev’s hesitance in the first place—her relationship. But if we were to ignore that for a moment, I still believe Dev was doing it right all along.
Dev possesses patience. He knows that it’s not about capitalizing on that one special girl as soon as possible. It’s about building strong relationships with people, and as those relationships are refined through friendship, watch them turn into something intimate as they run a natural course.
A sign of an immature man is one who blows through relationships like he does his Friday paycheck. The second he gets a little bit, he gobbles it up as fast as possible. And then he’s poor again, so he works real hard to get to his next paycheck, and then gobbles that up too. And so on. A mature individual treats his relationships like investments. He keeps it diverse so as not to put all eggs in one basket, and over time he watches those relationships nurture and blossom. He eventually becomes of what most young men are incapable: Wealthy. The great thing about wealth is once you get it started, there isn’t a lot of work involved after that. You already know what you’re doing and if you’re smart, hardly ever drop back to zero dollars.
This is what I see going on between Dev and the ridiculously, sickeningly beautiful Francesca. They are both watching their relationship get deeper and deeper. They’ve had time to move past where a normal relationship would travel and into places where with others they would probably feel vulnerable. And through that, Dev and Francesca’s chemistry and sexual attraction grows to exciting proportions.
Francesca already was dating the perfect man: Rich, good-looking in that way everyone wants a man to be good-looking (what is that, tall dark and handsome?) He also confident and outgoing. I believe that the thing about truly beautiful women is they are past the superficialities of looking for what everyone else wants. No one knows as much as them that they can get that. But then what is the next step?
I think he’s brown, cute, comes in a tiny package, funny as hell, a bit weird, completely comfortable with his weaknesses as well as his strengths, fun-loving, positive as all hell, and is never rushing to get to where he’s going.
This guy. The modern charmer.