The Problem with Pick-Up Lines

Recently, as I was boarding my return flight to Denver, I was dreading the fact that I couldn’t avoid the uncomfortable experience of getting stuck with the middle seat on the flight. I comforted myself with the knowledge that it was a non-stop flight and that I was exhausted enough that I might be able to fall asleep, even while crammed in the middle seat of my row. As I took my seat, I was taken off guard when the young man I scooted past leaned over and “introduced” himself.

“I was hoping you would be a hot girl.”

I turned and looked at my neighbor on my right. This was not the type of greeting I was expecting from a total stranger on an airplane.

“Excuse me?” I replied.

You know, I was hoping you would be a hot girl and we could snuggle up and get sexual.”

I would not be sleeping on this flight. As I quickly discovered, my neighbor for the two-hour flight back to Denver was the epitome of the “obnoxious frat boy.” This guy made the cast of Jersey Shore look like polite Englishmen from Downton Abbey. However, as I soon learned, the guy to my right wasn’t much interested in making conversation with me. He was more interested in “getting to know,” the attractive young woman on the other side of me.

For the next two hours, I was literally right in the middle of a two-hour attempt at getting a girl’s number for a one-night stand… and I could not escape (although jumping out of the airplane was rather tempting).

Over the course of watching the “obnoxious frat boy,” do his pick-up shtick, I observed three things:

Immaturity is Never Attractive

“Can I buy you a drink on this flight?” he asked the girl to my right. She was more than happy to take him up on his offer.

I tried to act like I was asleep, but it was impossible to ignore his constant vulgarity and sexual comments that he made toward the girl on the other side of me. When he got up to go to the bathroom, I decided to make a comment.

“You know he is trying to pick you up, right? What does a girl think when she encounters a guy like him?”

“Oh… I’m not interested. I would never go out with a guy like that. Trust me, this conversation ends when he asks me for my number. Immaturity is never attractive.”

I couldn’t have said it better myself. Young women are interested in dating MEN, not guys that act like they never left middle school.

Pick-up lines demonstrate insecurity.

When the guy came back from the bathroom, he decided to make his move. He noticed that the girl was texting a friend.

“Are you texting your boyfriend?”

“Is that your way of asking me if I have a boyfriend?” she responded.

What happened next was 15 minutes of some of the worst pick-up attempts I have ever witnessed. This guy stumbled all over himself trying to get the girl’s number. At one point, I couldn’t contain my laughter. It was pathetic.

Rather than demonstrating confidence and simply asking if she was interested in a date, this guy beat around the bush and when he was blown off by his repeated attempts, he would make a snarky comment and then try again.

If immaturity isn’t attractive, neither is insecurity. Security is demonstrated in a guy that is confident enough to be direct in his request for a date and secure enough to take rejection.

Kindness is Never Demonstrated in Expecting Something in Return

When it became apparent that he was not going to get anywhere with the girl on my right, the “obnoxious frat boy,” put on his headphones and finally stopped talking. Soon after the flight attendant came by to collect money for the drink that he offered to buy the girl. Instead of paying the bill (as he had offered to do), he stuck the girl with the tab for her drink. Apparently, because he could get nothing in return for his “investment,” he was no longer interested in being “generous.”

At this point, I could see how irritated the girl was with this guy. I immediately grabbed my credit card out of my wallet and paid for her drink. I didn’t want anything in return, I was just looking to be kind (and I felt bad for this poor girl that had to put up with this guy). Kindness, much like the virtue of Chastity, is about seeking the good of the other person instead of seeking to get something for yourself.


evEVERETT FRITZ is the author of Freedom: Battle Strategies for Conquering Temptation. He has dedicated his life to serving young people in the Church by challenging them to live as a disciple of Jesus Christ. Everett regularly speaks on the topics of discipleship, youth evangelization and chastity. He married Katrina, his high school sweetheart, in 2006. They reside in Denver, Colorado with their children. To contact Everett to speak or to learn more about his apostolates, visit Connect with him here on Facebook or Twitter.


  1. Great article! Short (which is so great) and very interesting.

    By Anna | 5 years ago Reply
  2. As I was reading through this blog, for some reason I expected it to be written by a woman. The author seemed like they had understood from experience what the girl was going through. It’s so awesome that you paid for her drink. I hope it made that guy re think his attitude. Good job, Everett!

    By Michelle | 5 years ago Reply
  3. Too bad this young man is being too familiar but maybe the girl should not accept the drink either, or pay for her own. Women lose their power by allowing drinks , food or other things be the”buy off” to other expectations. Women need to be cautious and have firm boundaries especially travelling. We can set the tone fairly quickly either way by our reactions. Sometimes people are just being nice but it’s better to politely decline . We teach children to never accept things from a stranger, maybe it’s a good rule for adults?

    By Kathy | 5 years ago Reply
    • Um, no, Kathy….women should not have to decline courtesies that men offer them because they are worried they have to reciprocate sexually. Men should offer to buy a drink/dinner or open a door for a lady because they are kind, and women should be able to accept with no worries of “losing power” in future offers or requests. It would be a terrible thing if women had to assume the worst of every man that offered to do something for her. Most men aren’t Ted Bundy, we shouldn’t treat them all like they are.

      By dani | 5 years ago Reply
      • Women simply assume that guys will be nice because of their gender, its not so. You need earn it

        By jon Snow | 5 years ago Reply
    • The problem is not guys being chivalrous and buying a woman a drink, it is the intention behind it that is bad.

      By Madison | 5 years ago Reply
  4. this really dum

    By Samantha | 5 years ago Reply
  5. This article got a lot funnier when I read to the end and saw the author was a man.

    By Lara | 5 years ago Reply

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