*** *** ***
Around May, a new sales assistant appeared in the small express supermarket next to my apartment. The very first time we saw each other she was at the till. I arrived there, we made eye contact, and immediately that feminine smile and those wide eyes appeared on her face. She looked down for a split second, and then moved her eyes back up, maintaining a pleased expression on her face. Ah, Sweet Girls… They really are adorable!
Our interaction was the bare minimum required in that kind of situation (the so-called Till Routine). I remained indifferent while she was scanning the items and while I was paying, but before going away I rewarded her with a confident yet sweet smile.
This is something I end up doing over and over, unconsciously: first, I wait for the girl to become comfortable with my presence and to start showing some sweet Indicators of Attraction; then, I progressively become warmer towards her, and proceed with the deployment of the 1-2-3 Method over time. If the IOAs are of the Diva type, let alone the Bitchy type, I never move past the “ignore” phase in situations where I can afford to comfortably ignore the girl (e.g. girls at the gym), while I never move past the cordial yet lukewarm Till Routine if the girl is part of the staff.
The girl in question was sweet and submissive towards me from the get-go, hence I rewarded her with a cool smile the very first time we saw each other, but only after remaining serious and indifferent during the entire interaction. Smiling at a new girl in my Routine Circle the very first time we meet is very quick for my standards, but on that occasion it felt right like that.
In the following weeks I didn’t see her very often, first of all because I was going to that shop pretty rarely, and then because she wasn’t always working when I happened to go there.
Once I saw her while she was sorting out items on the shelves, and I pinged her by asking a question on a product which was missing. We had a very brief exchange related to that product, very much a matter-of-fact interaction, but at least we had moved past the usual and boring Till Routine. And also, by having a good look at her when she was in the aisle rather than behind the till, I realised she had my ideal body type, slim and slender. Together with her sweet face and her sweet demeanour, it was a powerful combination indeed.
Before asking her out, I needed to interact a little bit with her and build some comfort. Problem was, this supermarket was much busier than the organic shop described in the other post here. As such, when she was at the till we could only exchange one or two lines each on the top of the Till Routine, and there were her colleagues plus quite a lot of customers right next to us. When I met her in the aisles instead, there were customers all around us, and I would have actually blocked traffic by remaining there talking with her, since the aisles are very narrow in that express supermarket. Fact is, having other people listening to me doesn’t bother me in the slightest, but it was essential to keep under control the social pressure on her coming from both her colleagues and the other customers, hence I needed to be smooth and calibrated in my escalation.
Once I bumped into her somewhere in the aisles and I pinged her with another functional question on a different product, but she was dead serious in that occasion, only to become sweet and more relaxed once again when she was behind the till the following time. Another time I appeared out of the blue when she was at the till, and I caught her so much by surprise that that she was unable to speak and her facial expression was completely blank, she was literarily petrified.
Yet another time she was once again at the till, but now she could see me queuing up and wasn’t caught by surprise. She was serving another girl, and I was next in the queue. The two girls clearly didn’t know each other, since their entire interaction was limited to the classical Till Routine, but when they noticed I was around they exchanged that pleased feminine smile the meaning of which is unmistakeable.
I hadn’t had the opportunity to build comfort, but the girl had consistently shown she was attracted to me, hence I decided it was time to ask her out.
One day I went there and she was at the till. There were quite a lot of customers queuing up and she was on the only open till. She ringed the bell and a colleague of hers arrived. You could tell she had noticed me, but this time around she was very much relaxed and she had a strange expression on her face like if she had a plan.
Then something interesting happened: I had almost reached the beginning of the queue, and she said to her colleague at the other till that he could have gone back into the aisles, since she could have handled the rest of the queue on her own. Fact is, the vibe a girl projects when she’s executing a seductive manoeuvre is unmistakable, and I saw that as a clear Approach Invitation for me. And I detest Approach Invitations, for reasons which are better covered in a separate post. Among other things, Approach Invitations put me under a lot of pressure, especially if I cannot “escape them”, and my heart rate went from normal to very high in a split second. Damn Approach Invitations.
There were maybe two other customers before me in the queue, and I tried to calm down but unsuccessfully. By the time it was my turn to get served at the till, I wasn’t in control of my emotions. I just said the bare minimum required by the Till Routine, but my vibe was completely off and I think it was clear from the outside that I was overwhelmed. My voice was cringeworthy, and surely there was a question mark at the end of my brief statements since my voice was tense. Fuck. Funny how that previous time when she was unable to speak she must have had a similar internal turmoil. Things can change quickly, and now it was my time to have that internal turmoil…
It was now August, and I decided to speed up the process to ask her out. Not easy, since when she was at the till she was surrounded by other people, and I very rarely saw her in the aisles. I figured the easiest scenario would have been to find her at the till in a calm moment, when there was only one till open and nobody in the queue. Beginning of the afternoon was a quiet moment, and since I didn’t know her weekly schedule, I decided to go there every early afternoon at the same time. By doing that, the very first time she happened both to be working and to be at the till, I would have had a clean shot. Sounded like an excellent plan.
I went there for two weeks straight every day between 3pm and 4pm. Every time, first I would pretend I needed something in the aisles so that I could go and have a look if she was there, since isolating her in the aisles would have been even easier than isolating her at the till. Then, I would take a product and go to the till. Basically, instead of going there and take what I needed once a week, I was going there every day and take products one by one. A strategy similar to the one I was using at the organic grocery shop, and since the things I needed were less than the things I needed to buy, I seem to remember I was building some inventory at home.
After two weeks of constantly going there every early afternoon (Demolition-Jack-Hammer Strategy), never did I see her there. What the hell. And the more the days went by when I was ready to pull the trigger but unable to do so, the more I needed to keep my heart rate under control before entering the shop the following time. Fact is, Routine Circle Game can take a big toll on your nervous system, especially when it comes to escalating things with the staff. There are so many variables at play, and it can really be nerve-wrecking.
The plan was well though in principle, since every early afternoon there was a member of the staff somewhere alone in the aisles, and another member of the staff almost alone at the till, but the girl I was interested in was never there. The tension was building up more and more, and this feeling of being ready to shoot but unable to do so was consuming me from within, fucking hell. I really don’t like loose ends…
*** *** ***
One afternoon I arrived and there was another sales assistant at the till. A sweet and feminine girl, and it was clear she had a little crush on me, but I didn’t like her enough to ask her out. I paid for my items, and then she said all sad:
I wanted to let you know that today is my last day here, since Uni is starting again and I will go back to study full time :(
My first thought was whether to go for her number or not, but over time I decided to be pickier in selecting the girls I ask out, mainly to limit the sadness of their side when I don’t commit to them. I liked her sweetness very much, but she wasn’t really my type, hence I just wished her all the best for the future.
My second thought was more like:
Holy shit, what if the other girl stops working here at the end of the month as well?!
The girl I was interested in looked young, only appeared in May, and as such it was highly likely she was another student about to go back to Uni full time.
Shit shit shit.
I only had three days until the end of August, and I decided to double my efforts to acquire the target: for those three days, some “compelling” reasons would have brought me to that shop first in the early morning before going to work, and then in the early afternoon after the gym. It was time to tighten the net. It was time to cover all the remaining work shifts there.
I figured during those three days I most likely would have had only one shot with her, if even that. As such, I needed to escalate things as soon as I saw her, even if that meant losing a bit of smoothness along the way.
Cooper, it’s no time for caution.
Masterpiece, the soundtrack
Early morning the following day, I left my apartment and started walking towards the express supermarket. My heart was about to explode, since there was the build-up of tension from all the previous days, when I was ready to pull the trigger but unable to do so, plus the usual unknown logistical variables:
Will she be working?
If so, will she be at the till or in the aisles?
Where will her colleagues be relative to her?
How many customers will be there and where?
Routine Circle Game can have a toll on your nervous system, and it was high time to put an end to that situation with that specific girl.
I arrived, and she was there.
The till was empty and she was in the aisle, with a male colleague of hers a bit further down the same aisle. I took whatever I needed to take, and since she was the staff member closer to me, I called her and we started going towards the till, so that I could have paid for my shopping… Sure, paying for my shopping was my main priority that morning…
As I turned around to walk towards the till, I realised that another customer appeared out of the blue and was already waiting there for someone to scan her items. Shit, the other fucking customers kept interfering with my escalation attempts!!
The other customer and the other staff member were say 10 metres far away, and me and the girl were halfway between them. Once again, I needed to speak with my voice a bit lower than usual, and I don’t like that.
I would like to invite you for a walk.
She looked at me with an extra-sweet expression, but without any burst of joy nor any smile. Not the best reaction, but not any hint of the Dealbreaker Triangle either.
For a second she didn’t reply, and that’s when I said.
Not now of course, since you are working. What time do you finish?
At 3pm… But I have a daughter…
She paused for a second.
And I’m taken.
Okay, let’s go to the till then.
*** *** ***
Many years before those summer escalations in my Routine Circle, I had already figured out very clearly that attraction is not a choice, and that Indicators Of Attraction are meaningless in terms of indicating “interest” and “availability”.
But still, yet another girl clearly attracted but unavailable… What the fuck!!
In an ideal world, only girls who are available and who are not going to play games will be entitled to show any sign of attraction towards a man, but our world is hardly ideal, and I ended up burning my hand yet another time with this attracted/unavailable thing.
*** *** ***
She got rid of the customer who was waiting for her at the till, and then it was my turn to pay. I was still a bit surprised that she had a daughter:
You look very young though.
I’m almost 30 now…
Another confirmation that I’m not good at guessing a girl’s age, also because a girl’s age is pretty much irrelevant to me, and the only things which are relevant are the emotions I feel when looking at her.
The girl in question had a sweet face, a sweet feminine vibe, and a slim body. I was very much attracted to her, and this is what was relevant to me. Things like her age and whether she’s a mother or not are just not part of the equation, mainly because I’m not looking for a wife or a stable partner.
I paid for my items and went away, not impressed about the final outcome, disappointed of yet another case of the attracted/unavailable curse, but satisfied that I had completed the 1-2-3 Method with her. Fact is guys, once your Fundamentals are solid and you can consistently generate immediate attraction, the only blocker to getting a solid phone number and seeing the girl again for the first date is her sexual availability . And between me and you, “her sexual availability” is my declared enemy.
Next time I saw her there, she showed the best possible reaction a girl can show after a rejected escalation: she was a bit embarrassed and slightly uncomfortable. That is the natural behaviour which authentic Sweet Girls display in that situation . Instead of handing the items to me after scanning them, as she used to do before, now she left them next to my bag for me to take them and bag them. Our fingers would have touched ever so slightly if she had handed the items to me, and that little contact was not slightly uncomfortable for her.
Eventually she became sweet and smiley towards me once again, also because I didn’t “persist” after the rejected escalation (persisting sucks). Instead of persisting, what I did was becoming serious and indifferent towards her, and removing the small talk and the warm smiles. Fact is, things could not stay the same after the rejected escalation, since my small talk and my smiles (not to mention my teases) are not a given. But I always added a “have a good evening” at the end of the Till Routine, contrary to what I did with the girl from the organic shop to punish her.
But I’m not a cold-hearted asshole guys, and as such after a month or so of punishment I started saying “have a good evening” to the girl from the organic shop as well. Never smiled at her ever again after she rejected my proposal for the affair, but at least now I’m back within the range of what is socially acceptable with her as well. What an angel I am…
 From the date onwards there are additional variables at play.
 Instead, the girl from the organic grocery shop wasn’t a real Sweet Girl, I think she had traits of HPD. Not full-blown HPD like the coach at the gym, but surely traits. The giveaways were both the fact that was too happy and not at all uncomfortable to see me after having rejected me, and the look of adoration she had in her eyes a few times when looking at me. On the contrary, her voice was not childlike, her body movements were not artificial, and she never engaged in the theatrical poses typical of the HPD who wants you to admire her.
• Routine Circle Game Summer 2019