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Too Nice To Be True.

"If it's too good to be true, it probably is" - so goes the old adage, which can sometimes save you a world of grief, if applied in the right situation. The late comers to pyramid schemes, victims of lottery scams, and all the winners of free iPads curtesy of Mark Zuckerberg, can attest to this. But the cynical and distrustful attitude which the statement engenders may also result in missed opportunities.

For women in want of a good man, this may very well be the case. Most women will claim to be objective in their search for that perfect man, and they will quickly tell you that "bad boys" are no good, and they get very quickly ruled out. Now you may think that if you're not bad, you've got to be good, and therefore have a very clearcut chance. But things are never that simple. While "good" and "nice" may pass as synonyms for the lexically inclined, not so in the mind of a woman! And "nice" is not a label you want a woman to apply to you.

What! Why wouldn't I want to be considered nice? So asks the uninitiated in consternation. While doing nice things will score you points with the ladies, being labeled a "nice guy" is definitely not to be desired. In fact, you're probably better of being known as the bad boy, than the nice guy, for in this list (if you will forgive the cliché) they really do finish last. Bad boys might not win the girl in the long run, but most women will fall for them at some point, albeit short lived. Nice guys on the other hand are often left standing on the sidelines to put the pieces back together after his nemesis is done playing.

Well let's attempt the impossible, let's try to figure out what what goes on in the mind of a woman *gasp* as she ignores all the nice guys, and goes romping around in decidedly bad company.

Nice Guys Are Too Easy

First thing, get your mind out of the gutter, that's not the easy we are talking about. What we are talking about here is the propensity of women to want to improve their men. They love to dress, groom, and feed their men and the jury is out on whether to blame this on their Mom's or Mattel. And it doesn't stop there, as also to be improved is the personality and overall demeanor of their mate.

Put a bunch of men (preferably friends who go way back) all together at a house party with their mates, and very quickly you end up with a "Taming of the Crew" scenario - most attentive spouse wins! Women take great pleasure in pointing out how much Ken has changed since being with Barbara, and how much Vincent has mellowed in the five years he's been married to Marsha. And all credit goes to the woman who tamed this otherwise wild beast. 

And herein lies the problem - nice guys don't need to be tamed. While no one is perfect, there is nothing spectacular about taking a nice guy and making him nicer, who is going to notice that? Where is the challenge? Too easy, moving right along.


Too Nice

This brings us to our second scenario: perhaps nice guys are simply too nice.  This is where defense mechanisms kick in - he's too nice to be true, so he probably is a fake, best keep him at arms length.  Sadly, this is the case because the male species actively sabotages itself - at least one third of us!  While women may consciously, or subconsciously throw us into one of the three categories, we all reap the distrust which results from the bad experiences with the bad boys.

When a guy puts out his best foot, the girl assumes he's just trying to get through the door, from which point he'll simply get mud all over her abode.  The nicer he his, the more doubtful she becomes.  Like quick money for little or no work, this guy is just too nice to be true.


He's Just A Friend

While nice guys may not get their pick of girlfriends, they are often consistently nice and quickly overcome the prejudice all men face in the pursuit of the opposite sex.  Soon the nice guy who wasn't to be trusted becomes a nice friend to have around.  But alas, that's where it usually stops - just friends. The nice guy is the friend she can call when the bad boy has made her cry, again. The nice guy will always say the right words at that time of the month, when the boyfriend camps out at the bar, for his personal safety. And most importantly, the nice guys does not view her as a sex object and can simply enjoy her company.

We could go on and on about the benefits of having a nice guy as a friend. But I think that has been satisfactorily addressed elsewhere.  With all the benefits that come with having a nice guy as a friend, it is understandable that a woman will want to protect that friendship.  Unfortunately, that often means that she does not consider him for the role of a boyfriend.  Irrational fears may be at play here.  What if he changes?  What if it doesn't work out, she can't very well cry on his shoulder.  Best to keep him as a friend than risk losing him as a boyfriend.

Johnny Be Good

Be a bad boy, and you're guaranteed to have some fun.  Be a nice guy, and you'll make some great friends - everyone likes a nice guy.  But too often nice guys get stuck being just a friend.  We could play the blame game and place this right on the laps of the women who overlook the nice guys.  But perhaps these nice guys need some backbone too - and not the kind you get from steam fish, that comes later.

Is there a middle ground to be found?  ** cue drum roll ** Enter the good guy!  ** flourish and applause **  This guy has many of the characteristics of the nice guy, but he's got that edge that doesn't leave her feeling like she's missing out.  He'll buy her roses just because, but he also has some rough edges which she delights in trying to sand down.  For example, he is conscious of his appearance, but could use some help in that department.  And since he has a backbone, he can tell her what she doesn't want to hear (but needs to be told) when she's being stubborn.

So guys, go, be good!  For much like the protagonists of Hollywood, the good guy always gets the girl in the end.
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