Lori Lothian believes it’s time for SNAGS to go the way of the Dodo bird.
I’m a woman who has been around the personal growth, consciousness-raising circuit long enough to spot a sensitive new age guy (SNAG) almost immediately. And while a man open to spiritual inquiry is attractive to me, what is decidedly a turn off is when a man tries too hard to play a ‘spiritual guy’ role. (Think the Austin Powers version of soulful—goofy caricature instead of authentic presence.)
I’m not sure exactly when the Sensitive New Age Guy showed up on the Western cultural scene but it was probably sometime just after Flower Power and bell bottoms—About when Ivy League educated Richard Alpert left for India and returned months later as Ram Dass, with instructions to his buddies to Be Here Now. Suddenly spiritual was cool, and by 2013 men had a plethora of ways to dress the part, from breathable yoga wear to mala bead necklaces to fair trade, natural fiber business suits for power meetings done in the Power of Now consciousness.
But sometimes, SNAGS are easier to spot (or not) by habitat than apparel. Typically, the best places to find SNAG-less men is in boardrooms, bars, pool halls and Superbowl Sunday parties. Where SNAGS hang out most is meditation circles, yoga classes, kirtan chant circles, ecstatic dance events and any kind of neo-pagan ceremony. Ideally, there is the third option guy, what I call a soulful sexy dude. Frankly, I think you find these rare fellows running particle accelerators, playing in rock bands or writing the great american novel.
The other day I ventured into a SNAG habitat, a full moon cacao ceremony (think molten chocolate imbibed like communiion wine in a priestess-lead circle). Even though I was pretty sure most of the men there were SNAGS, it wasn’t until the sacred dance portion of the evening—when the priestess asked us to punch the air while we danced—my suspicions were confirmed.
Only one guy out of about the ten men present actually, you know, punched the air. The rest of the men made wimpy limp gestures that no more resembled a punch than a ballet pliet resembles a hip hop dance move. Damn it, my punches packed more oomph than those guys. (Later, I asked the one guy who was punching if he had studied martial arts—bingo.)
I know, I know. Men have been told it’s not okay to be aggressive, that soft and gentle is in. But for gosh sakes, we are taking about punching the air while you dance, not knocking out a person or bashing a hole in the wall.
So, ever since this cacao ceremony, I’ve been ruminating on what exactly constitutes SNAG traits and what a soulful sexy dude version looks like. (Qualification: Some women love SNAGS. I am just not one of them).
Here it is then, 7 Signs You are a Sensitive New Age Guy:
1. It’s a first date and in good SNAG tradition, you take her to Kirtan or a cacao ceremony. Soulful Sexy Dude: Let me cook dinner for you at my place, and then let’s go to a Jazz club for a night cap.
2. It’s been a fun evening (or day) together and it’s time for that first kiss. You lean in and bow namaste. Soulful Sexy Dude: Leans in and asks if it’s okay to kiss her.
3. You’ve been dating several months. You finally pop the big question: Do you think we’re soul mates or karma mates? Soulful Sexy Dude: Will you marry me?
4. It’s time for the wedding ceremony. You choose an interfaith minister who is also a cacao priestess and Reiki master and of course you get married barefoot on a beach or in a meadow. Your vows are Rumi quotes, softly spoken while a priestess harpist plays in the background. Soulful Sexy Dude: Let’s elope (and preferably to an exotic land of adventure).
5. Your partner is bitchy. You decide to leave the room (I’ll be back when you are not so triggered) or in an eerily calm voice you point out the obvious (I can see that you are upset). Soulful Sexy Dude: You know, you are acting like a jerk right now, but I love you anyway. Would you like a back rub or glass of wine?
6. It’s home movie night and you insist on watching romantic comedies or obsurce film festival documentaries. When your partner suggests a Bruce Willis or Tom Cruise action movie, you look at her like she’s suggested a snuff film. Soulful Sexy Dude: Forget Bruce Willis, let’s watch a sexy flick together and then make our own erotic movie.
7. It’s time to have kids. You insist on gender neutral names, ideally referencing natural land forms, seasons or the animal kingdom (Tiger, Ocean, Sky, Summer). Soulful Sexy Dude: Let’s name our kids after our favorite relatives or friends.
Of course, there are countless SNAG traits, and this list could surely be extended, but why reinforce a kind of male species that is most likely headed for extinction. Afterall, if we women stop wandering around playing the dom new age priestess (DNAP, another article) then surely sensitive new age men will run out of mating options and go the way of the Dodo bird.
Authors Note: I’m kidding. This is a spoof. Please don’t send hate mail, unless of course you are a SNAG, in which case aggressive words may be therapeutic.
Bonus: Sensitive New Age Guys songtime.