Here’s a piece I wrote in 2000, which explains the no-longer-topical references, but the rest of it still holds up…
In my single days — a lot of years ago — I was never one of those guys who could pick up women in a bar. I never had a good opening line and was amazed at some of the men who could do it so smoothly while it always felt so awkward to me.
Whenever I tried anything approaching one of these lines, I got the same chilly reaction that Slobodan Milosevic gave his pollsters this week when the Yugoslavian election results came in.
On my show today, I was talking about this and wondering what kind of pickup lines my listeners could remember. I was also curious about whether any particular lines had been effective for the guys, and how women in the audience had responded to them.
Note that I didn’t ask what pickup lines the women used. That’s because, for most single guys, anything a woman says can be considered a pickup line. She may say nothing more than a simple hello, but the man’s ears somehow process it as a come-on.
That’s a scientific fact — verify it with any man you know – that has something to do with the structure of the male inner ear. She says: “Would you like fries with that?” He hears: “Won’t you please help me cure my terrible loneliness and longing for close physical contact?”
In reading these pickup lines, you may be as amazed as I was at how brash some of the guys have been. I can’t imagine saying most of these. Even more, I can’t believe that they have actually worked. Yet many men claim success with even the lamest lines below. On the other hand, most of the women I spoke to said that they would have to be pretty drunk to respond to these lines in any kind of positive way. Of course, that may just be the point.
Anyway, here’s the list, broken out into categories of ascending boldness…
“We must have met sometime before, because I have seen those eyes before.”
“Where did you put them? Your wings. Because you look like an angel.”
“Where did you park your cloud?”
“Your father must be a thief, because he stole the stars and put them in your eyes.”
“You’re so sweet you’re giving me a toothache.”
“If I had eleven roses and you, I’d have a dozen.”
“Are we near the airport or is that just my heart taking off?”
“My friend wants to know if you think I’m cute.”
Attempts At Wit
“You must wash your clothes in Windex, because I can see myself in your pants.”
“Are your legs tired? Because you’ve been running through my thoughts all night.”
“Is that a run in your hose, or is it my stairway to heaven?”
“Are you from Tennessee? Because you’re the only ten I see!”
“Do you know CPR? Because you take my breath away.”
“If I could rearrange the alphabet, I would put U and I together.”
For Use Only By Men Under 30
“Your daddy must be a drug dealer, because you’re dope.”
“Is your dad a terrorist? Because you’re the bomb!”
“Are you a parking ticket? Because you have fine written all over you.”
“Is that a keg in your pants? Cause I’d just love to tap that booty.”
First Used By A Caveman
“If I told you that you had a nice body, would you hold it against me?”
“Is it hot in here or is it just you?”
“Hi, I’m new in town. Can I have directions to your house?”
“When does your centerfold come out?”
“I seem to have lost my number. Can I have yours?”
What If She’s Lactose Intolerant?
“I’m like milk. I’ll do your body good.”
“You’re so fine, I want to pour milk all over you and make you part of my complete breakfast.”
“I may not be Fred Flintstone, but I sure can make your bed rock.”
“Hey, that dress looks nice. Can I talk you out of it?”
“That dress looks good on you, but I’d look better.”
“Are those pants from outer space? Cause that butt is out of this world.”
“I like your hair that way. But I’d really like to see what it looks like on my pillow.”
“I’d like to buy you breakfast tomorrow. Should I call you, or just nudge you?”
“My mother always said that I had hands that belonged on a girl. Can I put them on you?”
Too Crude To Use Except At Last Call
“Can I tickle your belly button — from the inside?”
“You have 206 bones in your body. Would you like one more?”
“You look like you have a little Mexican in you, and if you don’t, would you like to?”
“That outfit would look great in a crumpled heap on my bedroom floor tomorrow morning.”
Again, don’t blame me for any of these. I have never used them, and never would. I’d be scared to death of the response. Or that she might think I’m Craig Kilborn.
I’m not alone in my rejection anxiety. One guy told me he tried quoting an early Woody Allen movie to a woman in a bar, asking “Would you like to take me home and hurt me?” She didn’t waste any time. She kicked him in the shins right then and there.
A woman told me that a guy sat down next to her and introduced himself as “Bond. James Bond.” Without missing a beat, she replied, “Lost. Get Lost.”
Several ladies also asked me to pass along a tip to the guys. If you recognize that her name is the same as some famous song lyric, you should not start reciting that song to her. No matter how clever you think you are, you are not the first guy to try to impress her by singing “Oh Susanna,” “Help Me Rhonda,” “Michelle My Belle,” or, fer chrissakes, “The I Love Lucy Theme.”
What kind of approach would women truly welcome? Picture the scene in “Top Gun,” where Kelly McGillis is at the bar and Tom Cruise (with help from Anthony Edwards) strolls up with a microphone and serenades her with “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling.”
Caveat to guys: this overt tactic is considered a winner by women entirely due to the fact that Tom Cruise was doing it. It would not have the same appeal if you look more like George Wendt.