The art of flirting is perhaps the eighth wonder in this world. For men who have mastered this science, love, money and respect come flowing their way. For those men who find it easier to cup water in their hands than a woman’s breast – their only benefit is a stronger forearm.

A good flirt is charismatic in every way and is a master of all the senses. He knows how to dress, what cologne to wear, what music to listen to, how to dance, how to talk, how to look a woman in the eye and how to make a move.

A good flirt knows that the job starts long before you see, speak to or even meet the girl. Look at “Hitch,” the engaging and funny (but unfortunately corny) movie starring Will Smith and Eva Mendes. Smith plays the part of a god-like man named Hitch who knows what every woman wants and how to give it to her. He does the impossible in setting up a clumsy, chubby, white-collar worker with the fashion-goddess played by Amber Valletta, and he hooks up with smoking hot Mendes by the end of the movie. How does he do this? He works. Hard.

And what does all his hard work go into? Opportunity. Most women won’t notice you until you do something to catch their eye, stand out and separate yourself from all the other average bozos staring at her. In order to get the attention of the hot blonde (Valletta), Hitch instigates a scene in which his client defies his boss and takes Valletta’s side in an argument. The idiot then gets caught up in the moment and quits his job, but it sure as hell caught her attention. And you know what? He gets the girl, so it was probably worth it.

So don’t think you’ll be able to get a girl just by sweet-talking her; women are much smarter than that, and they know when you’re full of shit. The key, just as Hitch says, is to listen.

The feminine sex is much more interesting than most guys give them credit for (and those guys are the ones coming back from parties in search of a new and interesting porn site). Granted, I can’t stand “Grey’s Anatomy” or “The OC” or whatever show is “in” right now, but, other than that, what they have to say is usually much more interesting and intelligent than what you have to say (one more exception is when alcohol comes into play, but then neither of you is going to be so smart).

Confidence is integral to pulling this off. Ever wonder why that jerk-off is getting all the girls while you, the nice guy who’s always there for the girls you like, are stuck at home listening to Billy Joel or some other singer that sympathizes with you? It’s because it is much more useful to have an excess of confidence than none at all.

Whatever you do, don’t be intimidated. I don’t care if the girl is as hot as Sloan from Entourage (Emmanuelle Chriqui?Canadian? Who knew they contributed so much?), don’t let it get to you. She may have the most amazing body you’ve ever seen, but you’ve got just as much going for you. Yes, I’m even talking to all of you guys who suck at football and basketball and every other sport you’ve ever played; I’m sure you’ve got mad skills at World of Warcraft.

Just get out there, “flirt” a bit, and have some fun. I know, I know, it’s got to be hard to leave your level-60 warlord dungeon master alone for awhile, but trust me, the end credits to that game won’t be nearly as rewarding as being able to hold and listen to a girl you like.

Epstein is a member of the class of 2010.

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