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Charisma is a skill you can learn, say South Africa’s trio of ‘pick-up artists’, men who’ve learnt how to win women over. Ryan Peimer, 27, Darren Lurie, 28, and Josh Margolis, 24, started PUA SA just over two years ago, and have been imparting their experience as lady-killers ever since.
There’s even a Pick Up Artist World Summit, which was held in Los Angeles in January. A lot, it turns out, thanks to three guys who started up Pick-Up Artist South Africa (PUA SA) and have already run nine well-attended “boot camps” for men aged 18 to 40, across the racial spectrum.
Google “pick-up artist” and you’ll see that “pick-up artistry” has evolved into a thriving business throughout the world, with smooth-talking Lotharios sharing their tips with shy guys who feel awkward around women and need to brush up their social graces.
You see an attractive woman in a bar, but the last time you tried to chat up someone you spent a day’s salary on her drinks only for her to fob you off and leave with another guy. You walk over, say something smooth and she’s instantly making eye contact, smiling and laughing. It’s called pick-up artistry, and if you have the budget and the time to learn how to do it, you’re almost guaranteed to be able to win a girl over, at least for one night.
They say there is a tried-and tested technique in every successful pick-up.
The book was controversial in some quarters – Australian journalist Malcolm Knox wrote in his review, “I doubt he has anything helpful for anyone except those men whose emotional maturity stalled at age 15” – but it nonetheless made the New York Times best-seller list following its release in 2005.
Says Peimer: “The Game sparked my interest, and that’s when I learnt there was a whole pick-up artist community and lots of teachings on tools and techniques to build confidence and social skills. What we teach is the highest statistical probability of success when meeting women,” Peimer smiles, adding that “success” might mean a one-night-stand for one guy, and a gratifying chat that leads nowhere near a bedroom for another.