Posts Tagged ‘Zan Perrion


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.”  


Attraction coach face-off

If I needed any more convincing, the text messages did it. “Last night was the best night of my life.” “What are you doing now, sweetie?” And the clincher: “Come over, I’m making dinner.”

Okay, I get it already, Zan, thanks. You can put your cell phone away now.

Friday night I went for a drink with Zan Perrion ( One of the featured pick-up artists in Neil Strauss’s The Game, Perrion is an international man of mystery who spends much of his time jetting around the world to give seminars and talks on his life, his philosophy, and women. Occasionally he’ll make a public appearance in his hometown, which is how I met him in the fall at, appropriately (or inappropriately) enough, at the Vancouver YWCA. 

Anyway, our get-together—at the Cactus Club Cafe ( in Yaletown, part of a chain known for its attractive-waitress policy—was about the possibility of making me the guinea pig of a new program he is putting together. According to Zan, it’s still in the planning stages, but it would involve some one-on-one interactions out “in the field”, as well as follow-up emails and phone calls. The idea would be to teach me to be more successful with women.

Now, I know what you’re thinking. “But Shawn—you’re a great guy, you’ve got an interesting job, a car, your own place, you’ve got your shit together (more or less), you’re moderately good-looking, you’ve been known to tell a decent joke or let off a decent witty remark on occasion, you’re social, and you can play ‘Tangled Up in Blue’ on guitar. How could you possibly need more success with women???”

Good question. But the truth is, I’ve had few dates in the year since my last breakup. It seems like the minute I express interest in someone, it backfires; or, worse, I get put in “the friend zone”. And if I see a girl I’m attracted to, I immediately start thinking of reasons not to talk to approach her. Usually, I’m pretty convincing.

I came face to face with this just last Tuesday, when I went to a downtown mall with Stefan. An attraction/dating coach with Lifestyle Transformations (, a new company, Stefan’s mission was to help me overcome “approach anxiety.” Considering it had snowed earlier in the day and the mall was practically deserted, we had our work cut out for us. But my coach wasted no time walking up to a young woman and saying “Hi.” He followed up with, “This might sound strange, but I just wanted to say you look really good.” She seemed pleased and he chatted with her for a few moments before disengaging. According to Stefan, he’s done this sort of thing hundreds of times, and it showed in the ease of his body language. After a few more approaches, all of which went a similarly pleasant way, he told me, “Now it’s your turn.” I immediately tensed up. The idea of just walking up to an unfamiliar, attractive woman, and saying something—while stone cold sober, remember–is, to put it mildly, not exactly in my comfort zone.

But I did it—and each of the three times, the response was more or less friendly and positive. No one told me to go away or threatened to called security. Of course, the idea is to keep at this—that is, approaching women, saying “hi”, engaging in a brief conversation “offering value” with no concern for the outcome. I haven’t exactly been conscientious about that assignment. There was one other problem. At one point, Stefan watched a dark-haired girl walk past. When I asked why he didn’t approach her, he said she was too young. “How old?” I asked. “25,” said the 21-year-old.

Which got me thinking that I might feel a little more comfortable with a guide with a little more life experience under his belt.

Still, it was a step in, if not the right direction, then certainly a different one. And so, with the determination that 2008 is not going to be a repeat of the rather lame 2007, I’m going to get some coaching to find out what I’m doing wrong and how to change it. How does this benefit you, the reader? Well, you get to read about my stumblings and flailings right here on Click in a special blog series. And, with any luck, when it’s all over I’ll have met the woman of my dreams. Or at least, I’ll have received some text messages from a cute girl inviting me over for dinner. Is that so much to ask for?

August 2020

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