What’s love got to do with it? Emma Bernstein on the gurus who would guide you to the perfect pickupYou might expect that the art of seduction had changed since 1 BC, but you would be mistaken. Thanks to Ovid’s Ars Amatoria, published that year, the Roman was well schooled in all manner of sly tips and tricks, which bear more than a passing resemblance to those proposed by today’s praeceptores amoris. But there’s a difference. Whereas the scandalous advice of the Ars Amatoria caused a sensation (rivalled only by a certain birth the following year) and resulted in Ovid’s extradition to the Black Sea, nowadays, the authors of dating manuals can enjoy the reverence and gratitude of their lonely-hearted readership. Undoubtedly the most notorious of the numerous guides to seduction is Neil Strauss’ 450-page tome, The Game: Undercover in the Secret Society of Pickup Artists, which has achieved cult status among its lovelorn disciples. This is no simple, step-by-step instruction manual for the wannabe lothario. Rather, the book chronicles Strauss’ initiation into the “seduction community” and his transformation from a “formless lump of nerd” into his alter-ego, Style, the “master pickup artist”. Here, seduction is a field dominated by professional predators, relying upon mind control, hypnosis and persuasion techniques. Lest there be any doubt as to the credentials of The Game, Strauss’ own proficiency is confirmed when an incautious Britney Spears gives him her number. One seduction method beloved of the pickup artist is ‘negging’, which is “to actively demonstrate a lack of interest in a beautiful woman by making an ambiguous statement, insulting her in a way that appears accidental, or offering constructive criticism”. Whilst it beggars belief that classic ‘negs’ such as “you look great – are you wearing make-up?” would melt hearts, ‘negging’ apparently has the dual effect of empowering the pickup artist and making the woman vulnerable. Other methods of seduction rely upon neuro-linguistic programming, “a form of waking hypnosis”, which uses repeated mesmerising hand movements and “flirtatious hypnospeak”. Yet its amoral techniques and nouveau jargon have only served to increase the allure of The Game, whether as a glimpse into a fascinatingly sordid enterprise or as a guide to follow with religious fervour. However, in terms of sheer notoriety, a serious contender to The Game comes in the unlikely form of The Rules – Time-tested secrets for capturing the heart of Mr Right, its exact opposite in every way. Where The Game uses advanced mind-control and invented terminology, The Rules espouses the traditional approach, and is bloated on its own self-hype. The two authoresses assure readers that they too can “make Mr Right obsessed with having you as his by making yourself seem unattainable”, by simply following their 35 rules. Their credentials are all in the book’s dedication: “to our wonderful husbands”. Quasi-scientific justification is offered for women playing hard to get; “men are born to respond to a challenge” and that “biologically he’s the aggressor”.Can a “good marriage” really be based upon such superficial rules? Women are advised that “if you have a bad nose, get a nose job”, are told to limit phone calls to ten minutes and to end the date first. The publications of The Rules had feminists up in arms, but the authors argue that their empowering methods enable every women to get what she wants, namely “a marriage truly made in heaven”. It remains to be considered whether the approaches of these two very different books get results.
Marta Pauer-Tursi announces the launch of Borealis PR, a full-service public relations agency specializing in social marketing, corporate social responsibility (CSR) and public affairs. Ms Pauer-Tursi is a seasoned communications specialist with ten years of corporate communications experience at a Fortune 100 company. Her career also includes nine years as an editor and writer at The New Yorker magazine.In opening Borealis PR, she brings experience in developing communications strategies for organizations seeking to pursue programs in corporate social responsibility. “In today’s business environment, transparency, accountability and reputation are crucial components of organizational identity,” said Ms Pauer-Tursi, “Companies are scrutinized by consumers and the media as much for how they run their business as for the profits they earn. That is why a solid strategy that communicates a company’s core values is essential.”Ms Pauer-Tursi and her colleagues who are specialists in law, human resources, public and environmental affairs will offer clients a broad range of strategic communications solutions to enhance market value and reputation. “With so much experience on the front lines, we will be able to offer more than counsel to clients,” Ms Pauer-Tursi said. The agency’s approach is to become fully integrated into clients’ marketing and communications teams.Borealis PR is Vermont’s first agency to specialize in CSR.For more information about Borealis PR visit www.borealispr.com(link is external)
When Visions Federal Credit Union($4.2B, Endwell, NY) initially invited Ty Muse to interview for the cooperative’s CEO position, Muse, who was satisfied with his role as CFO at a nearby credit union, declined.“I was a finance guy,” Muse says. “I was living near where I grew up and was making a difference in my community.”But after thinking it over, he saw the role for what it was: an opportunity.“How many large, strong credit unions only a few hours from my hometown was I going to come across that wanted to talk to me about becoming the CEO?” he says.Muse decided he wanted the job, and he took the helm on May 1, 2013. ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr continue reading »
Major League Soccer and the MLS Players Association have officially ratified a new collective bargaining agreement, paving the way for a return to play in 2020 while avoiding a potential lockout.The two sides announced the deal Wednesday after several days of negotiations that threatened to undo the progress made during the winter months. In February, the league and MLSPA agreed to a five-year CBA running through the 2024 season that included increased player spending, increased forms of free agency and a rise in the availability of chartered flights. The deal was agreed shortly before the start of the season, with the two sides avoiding a potential lockout.That deal was not ratified before the coronavirus outbreak shut down the league, however, as the process to officially finalize an agreed-upon CBA takes time. As a result, the pandemic threatened to undo all the progress made during talks in January and February with the two sides forced back to the negotiating table in the wake of the coronavirus.The league had played two matches prior to the coronavirus shutdown implemented on March 12. As a result of the agreement, the league is cleared for a return to play for a widely reported tournament in Orlando, Fla., that is set to begin in July.MORE: Weston McKennie wears ‘Justice for George’ armband during Bundesliga matchAccording to The Athletic, preparations for that tournament will begin June 24, with players beginning a two-week training camp in Florida. The tournament, which will keep players there for about six weeks, will include three group-stage matches that will count toward the regular season, as well as a knockout round.Talks were reportedly held up by several issues. One was a clause tied to attendance numbers that would allow the league to back out of the CBA. Another was a proposed decrease in the percentage of media rights revenue share for players in 2023 as well as the players’ proposed pay cut, which was agreed to earlier in the process.”MLS Players today ratified a new collective bargaining agreement, which will run through the 2025 season,” a statement from the MLSPA read. “Today’s vote also finalizes a plan to resume the 2020 season and provides players with certainty for the months ahead. It allows our members to move forward and continue to compete in the game they love.”However, we recognize that we are all moving forward — as players, as fans, as societies and as a world — into a future that looks much different than the one we mentioned a few months ago. There are problems we face collectively that are both more urgent, and more important, than competing on the field.”We are grieving, we are fed up, we expect change, and we expect action. This change won’t come on the field, but it will come partly through the force and determination of those who seek justice and quality. We hope our return to the field will allow fans a momentary release and a semblance of normalcy. “We are committed as a group to doing all that we can — both as leaders in our sport as well as leaders in our communities — to help carry our countries, our communities, our league, and our sport forward.”