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The Princess Bride Theory

54b took a break from strategizing his underpants storage systems theory to offer a word of advice for the gents on V-Day. As always, enjoy the fun.

Most chicks, and I use the term loosely, begin each date with one thought on their minds: "resist all forward advances lest this guy think I'm a whore."

Conversely, every guy, and I mean every guy, enters the dating arena much like a marginal athlete who spends most of his time riding the bench. His only thought in the world: "please God, let me score."

At any rate, somewhere between the invention of fire and foreplay, man discovered sealing the deal was made infinitely easier if they could convince said date to join them back at the friendly confines affectionately known as the "bachelor pad." And what better way to gain "home-field advantage" than to suggest "movie-rental night."

Though brilliant in its simplicity, the movie- rental date, if executed incorrectly, will prove more disastrous than the time some enterprising young man propositioned his date by cutting a hole in the bottom of his tub of popcorn and, well, you know the rest. And while this young man might have received points for creativity, innovation and the highly sought after "wow" factor, from an executional standpoint, it was a nightmare. Needless to say, when it comes to making your move on movie-rental night, picking the perfect movie is paramount.

To ensure your success in your selection process, here are a couple of NO-NO's to adhere to at all costs:


Guys, if you want to play doctor, don't rent "The English Patient." She'll come down with a case of the cuddles and by the end of the date, you'll be suffering from a severe case of the Blue-Ballic plague.


No doubt "Hoosiers" is the greatest movie ever made, but if you plan on doing any scoring off the court, it's important to remember that she's not a basketball rim and you ain't Jimmy Chitwood.


Admittedly, the "Little Mermaid" is a little hotty-pants, but believe me, no girl wants to delve under the covers with "Under the Sea" on extended-play and some queer lobster running through her head.


Nothing will make a girl run into your arms faster than the threat of "Jason" the homicidal lunatic with a hatchet looming ...then again, nothing kills the mood faster than when she spends the next two hours running a background check on you via the Internet.


Well, let's just put it this way: If you're still dependent on subtitles to help you speak the international language, chances are you're still trying to figure out how to get your sister's training bra off the dog. Forget "Amelie." The only thing you'll need that's French at a time like this is a $7 bottle of ripple and maybe one of those "tickler thingies."


It's tough enough to impress your date as it is and your odds are only going to get worse if the only thing she has to compare your scrawny ass to is some character named Johnny Hungwell, Private Dick.


If you plan on going where you haven't gone before, it's probably not a good idea to rent "Star Trek." Take it from me, lose the force Luke and stick with the yawn and stretch technique.


See "Action-Adventure."


Let's be honest here, "Singing in the Rain" was a tragic song about a guy so hard up his only recourse was to take a cold shower. So unless you're planning on slipping some Spanish Fly in her Dulce De Leche, leave the "Guys and Dolls" on the shelf where it belongs.


I know renting "F-Bomb," the heartwarming story about the blind, quadriplegic racquetball player with Turrets syndrome seems like it would show your date that you have a sentimental side, but repeat after me, "you can't ball her when she's balling her eyes out."

So what's left? I'm glad you ask. In the far corner of most movie rental stores (and no, I'm not talking about the little room behind the curtain), you'll find a little known section called "Romantic Comedies." True, these movies come dangerously close to falling into the bottomless crevasse of emotional hell known simply as "Chick Flicks" with the exception of one very important aspect: Romantic comedies feature actors who originally set out to make really steamy romance films, but were either too ugly or too stupid to pull it off. However, their loss is your gain and here is why...

As I mentioned before, most women enter the dating realm with their defenses up. And nothing lowers those defenses quite like laughter. But you have to be careful, you make her laugh too much and she won't take you seriously leaving you alone to spend the rest of the night punching the clown. So you've got to mix in some subtle romance. Consciously, she'll think, "Wow, I'm having a really good time with this harmless guy who just wants to share a couple of laughs," while subconsciously, her "Id" will be screaming for a little TLC. And since you're the only warm body within arms, you're in like flynn.

Here are my top five "can't miss" picks:

WHEN HARRY MET SALLY - You got the whole salad bar fake orgasm thing, the platonic relationship debate and don't you just know you're going to be looking pretty good to her after she spends two hours looking at Billy Crystal's ugly mug.

THERE'S SOMETHING ABOUT MARY - What can I say other than it's a damn funny movie and if you're not exactly a stud, no worries because in the end, the dork gets the girl.

THE WEDDING SINGER - Oh yeah, this movie will spin you right-round baby, right-round. You play your cards right and she'll be waking up in your Van Halen t-shirt (NOTE: T-shirt not included).

TOP SECRET - It's basically Naked Gun but with better looking actors. And no, you probably can't compete with Val Kilmer, but then again, your date's breasts probably don't defy gravity either. It's a zero-sum game, but it'll still work.

And my numero uno, unbeatable, never misses even when the ladies leave the seat down pick is...

THE PRINCESS BRIDE - What else could you possibly want from a movie? There's a princess with perfect rack, a swashbuckling farm boy risking it all for true love and Andre the Giant. Okay, maybe not so much with the giant, but if you can't score with this flick, you might as well save the $3.99 rental fee and spend it on phone sex.

Hey, nobody ever said sealing the deal was easy. And no doubt women are the smarter sex and will always have the upper hand when it comes to slamming ham. But females do have one exploitable weakness, and that, my horny little friend, is their emotions. Even they will readily admit that they let their heart lead them while we men still rely on that trusty compass in our pants.

And while women are the gatekeepers, we men, own the keys. But you've got to have the right key to open the lock and that key is the Romantic Comedy. Next to putting on side one of "Led Zeppelin IV," there isn't a more sure fire way to take a roll in the hay.

Have fun storming the castle boys.