The Art Of The Hunt

A Stoke treatise on getting saucy and smashing strangers.

There’s nothing quite as thrilling as nailing a stranger for the third time. The first time, yeah it’s pleasant, but it’s more of a fluke than anything, the inevitable conclusion of throwing it all out there often enough. Infinite monkeys X infinite typewriters kind of thing; you should take no pride in your persistence. But the stunned look on their face, that’s enough to inspire a second swing of the bat.

The second time, there’s a certain calculation to your game. Whether conscious or not, you’ve ascertained what works and what doesn’t; you’ve elected your target based on what worked previously, and you can focus all of your attention on hammering them. The thing with the second time is that you’ll fall flat as often as you succeed – your strike ratio isn’t high enough for you to be making the attempt with the requisite confidence, in many regards this is still your first rodeo. Keep at it, cowboy.

When you make your second strike then you’ll be going into the third with a swagger that parts. The third is less an attempt than it is a foregone conclusion; you know what you want and you know how to get it. Choose your target wisely on the third run, because you’re in the zone where you can conquer anybody and anyone and anything. Don’t inform them that you’re coming for them, leave them numbed in their false sense of security. You will see them across the crowd and you will see the dumb smile on their face and you will know that sooner or later the smile will be replaced with a horrid mess. Visualise them wiping the mess off their face, that will help you to achieve satisfaction.  

It’s best to only focus on strangers, because it’s rude to nail people you already know. That said, when you nail a stranger multiple times you should probably introduce yourself, exchange numbers, offer to add them on Facebook, or something. I mean, we both know that you will have no intention of ever contacting them, but you don’t want to appear like a total sociopath, even though you are behaving like one.

Afterwards you can stand there, all saucy, dripping in the effluent that’s left over from nailing and being nailed, grinning from ear-to-ear, picking detritus out of said ears, with your clothes torn and probably a few bruises, smiling dumbly and thinking to yourself that, Goddamn this is messy, hedonistic business, but hoowee if I could think of a better way to pass my time!

* Stoke Travel offers all-inclusive packages to La Tomatina, including transport from Barcelona, if getting to Valencia is out of the question. Join us from the 29th August – 2nd of September.

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