Posts Tagged ‘JDog

06
Mar
08

Real World Rapport Summit Day 3

11:00 a.m.: Lance is up there, showing us a new approach. Sheba, the Persian supergirl, sits at a table reading a book (one of the previous day’s props during Lance’s romance novels bit). I’m walking in on the middle of it, but apparently the routine is one where Lance spots his subject from across a room–a cafe, say–then slowly gets up and walks towards her. He looks down at the ground and focuses his nervous energy. He doesn’t crack a smile; he just walks up and says, “I had to come over and talk to you.” She puts down the book and he waits, silently, until she says something. It’s important not to crack a smile, he says–that will dissipate the sexual tension. But, speaking of tension, when I arrive this a.m. there are no seats and the back area is blocked by a sign reading, “For Pickup 101 and speakers only.” I take this as a personal message, and decide to spend the afternoon indulging my nostalgia for Polk Street, where I spent much time while apartment sitting in San Francisco ages ago.  3:00 p.m.: Beer, a swimming pool, the sun–who cares about the rapport summit? I’m too intent on enjoying my last afternoon in San Fran. However, I do run into some of the participants as they mingle outside. Jdog, one of the speakers (the dude with the pen 15 routine), f’rinstance, is out there near the pool on his phone. Also, I talk briefly with Tad, a participant from Edmonton, where he does improv comedy, and has worn a kilt to the conference room the last couple of days. Perhaps a form of what these guys call “peacocking”? He says the afternoon has been “intense.” 8:00 p.m. Back at Zan-adu, Don Diego is covering the lamps with coloured tissue paper from his all-purpose Victoria’s Secret shopping bag. This gives the room a pleasantly seedy bordello effect. “Is this in one of your e-Books?” I ask. (He’s written about 100, he says, for Neil Strauss’s Stylelife Academy.) “Yes,” he says. “My hotel party eBook.” Turns out he’s kidding, but it doesn’t sound like a bad idea to me. 09:50 p.m.: Well, I’ve missed almost all of Sunday. But I’m in time to catch the last minute of Lance’s sit-down conversation with Badboy, a Croatian ladeez man, also featured in Strauss’s The Game. Badboy is talking about when is the right moment to kiss her. “The moment you find yourself thinking, ‘Should I kiss her,’ you should,” he says. “In fact it might even be too late.” And: “Nightclubs are stacked against you… They’re a hostile environment.” And this: “Don’t think about yesterday’s mistakes. And tomorrow is just a dream. Seize the day.” A round of applause follows Badboy’s inspiring words, and then Lance announces the end of the day. Everyone mills about–PUAs (pickup artists) getting reacquainted, students asking more questions of their faves, supergirls deflecting pickup methods. 12:45 a.m.: The party in in full swing up in Zan-adu, with Lance, Zan, Don Diego, Daniel Johnson, Karisma, and a few others. (Zan has somehow talked Karisma into coming back to the hotel, even though she’d already left. Hmmm. The guy’s got talent.) We’re getting loud, and Iain from hotel “engineering” has come by to warn us we’re disturbing the Cathay Pacific flight attendants in the neighbouring rooms. Dylan is pouring him some of Don Diego’s champagne; Iain is surprised and somewhat shocked, even excited, when he realizes he is in the room with professional PUAs. He comes up, by accident I believe, a great name for them–“Premier Fuck Gurus” or something. He shows us the left-shoulder tattoo of his baby daughter, and that’s it for me–things are getting too weird, and I’m not up to conversing with anyone. I sneak out quietly, leaving the superstars of pickup artistry to plan, philosophize, and strategize–not on how to pickup chicks, but on new ways of marketing.

04
Mar
08

Real World Rapport Summit Day 2

9:30 a.m. (saturday march 01, San Francisco): Pickup 101er and Summit MC Daniel Johnson brings out Eric Disco and Alexandra to work on an exercise in vibe-ing with four volunteers from the audience. It’s really fascinating to see these guys stumble and stutter and fumble around. One of the dudes onstage is a 50s-ish guy named Bill. There’s something about getting “coached” from young whippersnappers like DJ and Disco. As usual, the emphasis is on “being in the moment” and listening. Breathe, relax, focus on what she’s saying. 10:30 a.m.: All the presenters (or whatever you want to call them) wear the same clothes as yesterday for continuity. In 2-3 months Pickup 101 will be selling DVD sets of this summit, and I guess different clothes would ruin “the vibe”. Lance has on his pink dress shirt and grey slacks, and today is talking about romance novels. He builds them up thus: “what if you could test out every seduction scenario on millions of women to see what works?” His answer is, look at the bestseller lists and see what romance novels are at the top. 11:30 a.m.: It’s a beautiful day out there and I’m getting antsy. The romance novel talk was interesting enough but San Francisco awaits. Besides, I’m not feeling as welcome as I had the previous day.  I was at the summit under Zan’s aegis, after all (that is, I hadn’t paid the $1,500 or whatever the rest of these dudes had paid), which had been fine when he’d actually been sitting there with me at the back. But without the Zan seal of approval I feel like some of these Pickup 101ers might be wondering what the hell I’m doing here.12:30 p.m. In case you haven’t notices, these times are more or less random. But I’m pretty sure that, around noon, I was on a submarine with Zan and his buddy/business associate Dylan. I’d tracked them down and, after looking for a “pirate store” ZP has fond memories of, we’d walked around Fisherman’s Wharf until we’d found a tourist attraction called the U.S.S. Pampanito (I think that’s its name). The boys couldn’t resist and, as they were generous enough to pick up my ticket, I thought what the hell. Make of this what you will, but I’ve had a fascination with subs since I was a little model-building kid. Dylan takes a bunch of pictures of us as we squeeze through the compartments.3:00 p.m.: I’m catching some rays on Columbus, making my way to City Lights bookstore and asking every girl I see for a lunch recommendation. This isn’t the actual assignment Lance has given us; his suggestion was that we go out and find a girl, or two, sitting at a restaurant. We walk up, ask what’s good on the menu, and after her reply say, “Okay, but if it’s not good I’m coming back to tell you.” The idea being, the question is a way to open and, by walking away, you become unthreatening, and the women are more open to you when you return–and ask if you can sit with them. After the romance novel talk, Lance had told us about discovering this methodology when, as an engineer, he’d worked in another part of the city and was getting sick of the daily commute and wanted to meet someone closer to where he worked.  6:30 p.m. A couple of people I don’t recognize are upfront with a few of the participants. A tall gangly guy is addressing a dude named Eduardo, sitting across from a tall-ish blonde, about “feeding the wolves.” The gist of it is, when you’re talking to someone you like, there are two wolves you can feed–the one that is your negative voice (second-guessing, self-doubts, etc.) or the one that is your positive voice. At least, I think that’s the gist of what he’s saying. Kendra, the blonde, and the tall dude, Dekker, are from an organization called A.M.P.–“Authentic Man Program.” I’m impressed with Dekker’s authority. 8:00 p.m. I’m even more impressed when, over dinner (once again at nearby Wharf place Boudin’s), he addresses Zan’s friend Kasia, from Vancouver, with, “I came here to connect with you.” If I tried this line I would be laughed out of the restaurant (so says the negative wolf). Dekker has a very charismatic intensity. He quotes a James Galway poem, “The Bud”, and tells us that he spent two months in a monastery, and that the two hours where he was actually able to “quiet” his mind wast the best, most blissful time of his life. 9:00 p.m.: “How many of you have been waiting to see Zan go on a date?” asks Lance. He’s all fired up at the idea: Zan, he says, is one of his heroes. The Z-man has selected Alexandra, the dark-haired Pickup 101 dating coach and, for this weekend (because other supergirls couldn’t make it) supergirl (Lance’s name for the girls who work with him) to be his date. What we witness isn’t magic, exactly, but it’s ZP’s technique–he starts out with, “So tell me. I’m curious–why did you come out on a date with me?”, and then moves into, “So tell me something about yourself.” It seems to work to some degree, at least, because Alexandra tells him that she’s from a family of magicians, and that she’s been doing magic tricks since she was 5 or 6. The “date” lasts about 10-15 minutes, and doesn’t include any other revelations. I’m a little worried, actually, that Dekker, whose “date” is scheduled next, might steal the show from the Z-man. 9:30 p.m.: I’m called away to the phone, and when I come back into the room something curious is happening. Dekker’s up there with Karisma, a pretty but uncommunicative, maybe shy, brunette. He’s staring at her with his usual intensity and she’s obviously uncomfortable. This does not look like a fun first date from where I’m sitting. But then Dekker gives voice to what everyone’s thinking when he says, “this isn’t fun, is it?” and Karisma says “no.” The tension in the room is relieved, and Dekker points out that that was the moment he and K finally connected, when they could both laugh about what a bad time they were having. Still, next to this, the Z-man’s display was golden.10:00: Lance sits off to the side while five supergirls stand at the front of the room. He instructs the guys in the audience to focus on the girls and project on them their fears, desires, etc. Unfortunately, after seeing Lance demonstrate his goofy (but effective) “Do you have the time?” approach, I can’t take this part seriously. 12:01 a.m.: We’re in Zan-adu (my name for Zan’s hotel room), and the party is on. I’m in a room full of some of the best (or best marketed) pickup artists of the modern age–British dude JDog, the stylish Don Diego Garcia, of course Zan, plus Dylan, Zan’s friend Kasia, and a few more. The vodka is flowing freely and I’m trying to pay attention while observing JDog and DDG at work. But all I remember the next day is J’s “Pen 15” trick–asking a girl if she knows what Pen 15 is, asking for her hand, and writing “Pen 15” on her arm. Of course, what actually goes on her arm, is “penis.”  




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