Clubs are always fun places to go. The more upscale nightclubs seem packed with insecurity. Guys go to clubs to show off their girls (and then pick fights with people who might be looking at her. Does anybody understand this behavior? I don’t). Some go to hook-up, although despite what Hollywood tells you, in real life there’s a bit less hooking-up at trendy nightclubs then you’d imagine, as I’ve noticed the people who enter together are usually the same ones who leave together. (Unfortunately, the trendier the nightclub, the more self conscious everyone is, and the less people actually get friendly.)
But more than anything else, the upscale nightclub is a social status game. Who has the most status? Who appears the ritziest? Who’s the VIP? This status game may correlate with other aspects: such as sex. Many guys believe the one who shows off the most status will be the one women approve of. The highest status male, therefore, walks out with the highest status (most attractive) female. Sometimes it works out this way, although very often the guy who thinks he’s the lion of the nightclub can still go home alone.
Because of this social status game, a lot of people are very self-conscious in nightclubs. They’re extremely aware of their status in the room. And, things like who they’re affiliated with become very important (high-school all over again). People are sized up by their dress, physical attributes, and appearance of popularity (Does the guy have hot women around his arm? Are the women being bought lots of drinks and being given extraordinary attention?). In many nightclubs, you can cut this self-awareness with a knife. You’ll find people are not very conversational in a natural sense. It’s not uncommon for a seemingly low-status person to be flat out ignored by his or her constituents, while somebody with the appearance of status will have the power to mingle with almost anybody.
Everyone in a club is aware that it’s a game, but few are consciously playing it. If you want to delve into this game (and sometimes it’s fun) there are certain techniques to have the edge and actually appear high status in a nightclub. Yes, even if you’re competing over club space with Rihanna and Jay-Z who just walked through the door with 10 bodyguards, you can still do this, and have a good time. Here are the steps.
1. Have a posse. You can troll around by yourself, and at best you’ll be written off as a player, at worst you’re a bar stalker or floozie. Go in with 3-4 other people.
2. Mix of guys and girls. Four guys is a sausage festival. A group of five should be preferably 3 girls and 2 guys. Four people should be at least half and half. A group of all guys, however, is acceptable if the next steps are followed to a T.
3. Laugh, have a good time, and be seen instead of heard. Forget about trying to go in and warm everyone else up (or going around ‘approaching sets’ like pickup artists teach). Instead, kick the night off with your own party. Forget the environment or where you’re at. Make sure you and your buddies are not super quiet and shy, or else it’s four people standing around and appearing awkward. Get talking, and make it conversation that’s more interesting then the nonsense you hear around you. This is where you get the self-consciousness out of your system.
4. Be inclusive. This next bit is very important. A lot of groups go into clubs, remain at step 3, and wonder why the night didn’t turn out very exciting. While everyone else in the club is paranoid of their appearance, status, and image–it’s time you and your friends throw that bullshit out the window. If anyone looks interested in your group–pull them in with you! If on a deck, don’t huddle together–instead, drag other people around you into your party and give them a good time. Stand up, walk around, and (as a group) talk to people. If you think you’re too cool for school, you’re way off. Everyone wants to have fun and meet people, so now you have to take charge and help them.
5. Ignore status rules. This is a very important step. You see, it’s the low-status person who is concerned with what other people think of him or her relative to the status of others. A lower status person will brush someone else off if they think he or she isn’t up to their level. So forget about this. Instead, the loner at the bar should be treated no differently than Jay Z and his 10 bodyguards. By being completely unaware of status rules, other people will ironically assume that you are so high-status that you’ve transcended social boundaries.
6. Focus on fun, like you’re that crazy guy at the party, but don’t overdo it. Keep that suave demeanor going, while being inclusive, ignoring status rules, and having a strong posse, and you’ll become one of the highest-status people in the club.
Of course, status is an illusion. By recognizing that it’s an illusion, you have the power to tinker with the illusion’s effect on other people.
Exerting status in a club is not just for finding a hot lover, because is still a powerful networking tool. When somebody rich and powerful you want to network with (let’s say Jay Z again) sees your group having way more fun than his group, and the fact you seem chill and unaffected by his presence, it will illicit curiosity, and probably a desire to go hang out with you. Once this happens, just remember step 5. You shouldn’t even acknowledge a famous person as being famous. If Lady Gaga appears with her 10 ft headdress, you should still ask “Hi, who are you?” even though it’s dead obvious who it is. And, you should remain completely unaffected. If you’re networking with the rich and powerful, being another creepy fan is the very last person you want to present yourself as.