James Blunt, famous for his love songs, has become infamous for his reported supermodel-calibre hookups. (Hey, any guy who's called party-crazy Ibiza, Spain, home likely isn't looking to settle down!) Indeed, experts say that plenty of guys have gotten wise to the fact that lame lines and octopus arms don't work-at least not on sober chicks. So when a woman meets a man who uses some tact and class, her defenses melt, says Tina Tessina, Ph.D., author of The Unofficial Guide to Dating Again. While a quintessential player makes no excuses for his behaviour, these crafty guys actually work at winning a woman's trust. Let's face it, plenty of so-called nice guys aren't conventionally handsome. So they probably were charmingly vulnerable and then realised at some point that they could leverage that trait to become more attractive to women.
So how do you know if a nice-guy act is just, well, an act? One red flag is when a dude goes overboard with the big romantic gestures (a perfect candlelit dinner, flowers for no reason) but never talks in specifics about past relationships. He may be an expert at wooing but not have any experience following up.
Also, be wary of any dude who goes out of his way to convince you that he's not a scoundrel, overexplaining or denying his playerlike behaviour. Says Dr Sharda Batra, Holistic Consultant, New Delhi: "It's easy to spot a guy who is trying a bit too hard to be nice. Nice people don't need to try to be nice, they just are!" There are still others who will harp about the theory of free-love where relationships are open and no one is tied down to commitment.
But for all you know they're slimy and pretentious, covering up their intentions with a practised intellect. These guys seem like the perfect romantics, humble, down-to-earth, poetic, and more often than not, nature-lovers! Seeming absolutely harmless-thus, it's the easiest to give in to them. They'll talk about stuff that'll make you feel free, lighthearted, almost like you're high, and that's where lies a great degree of addiction. After which it is your personal choice to lead a life without basic rules and regulations (read discipline), or know when to back out. The only way to know a true saint from a pseudohippie, is honesty. Everyone has the right to choose their way of life, but a player will be faking all the I-don't-believe-in-commitment talks, whereas a real dude will tell you honestly right at the start.
With inputs from Jaya Sharma