Thursday 17th September 2009. I’m in town early, quaffing a Starbucks and playing with my netbook. At about 1pm I decide to get going and spot HB6 Madrid ambling past Tottenham Court Road station. I open nice and smiley, fairly disarmingly, because she’s a bit small and timid looking.
Her English is weak and a few weeks ago I’d have ejected but this time I perserve. She likes talking but mentions a boyfriend back home. She’s in London for two weeks, studying English. I vibe a bit, really speaking slowly and do light kino. I’m probably too loud. She says she’s looking at museums today so I take the opportunity to bounce her to the British Museum with an elbow lead.
We look around, I get her to take a few pictures of me as a compliance test and lead in to getting a picture of her for the blog. We swap Facebook names on the pretext of me sending the photo of her, then numbers. She mentions her boyfriend again. I decide the combination of BF, her poor English, the 2-week number, and her mere 6-rating to just eject. I do it politely, like I have to meet a friend. I send her a Facebook invite anyway when I get home.
Next are two sets in rapid succession on Carnaby Street. First is HB7 English who I stop well and she chats but I’m not really hooking. Then right after I stop HB7 Canada who is very cheerful and nice. I open normally then do the introduction:
Krauser: Hi, I’m Krauser
HB7: I’m HB7 Canada
Krauser: You’re awfully posh
HB7: *smiles* Well, I’m Canadian
We vibe about ten minutes but she says she’s come to England cos her boyfriend lives here, who she met travelling in Belize. So I keep it light, get a photo for the blog and let her go. Nice chat.
Then I’m up by Great Portland Street to meet Sai at Itsu for lunch. Just as I sit down outside with a coffee. HB6 Brit wanders past holding her takeaway lunch. I get up and open. She hooks well despite being on her way back to work. I get her Facebook but she won’t give her number.
Just as I sit back down with Sai a 2-set of HB9s goes past, walking fast with an A-Z map. I decide to do my second ever 2-set. Sai says it looks like a tough set. They are tall too. I run around and open.
Krauser: Hi. *pause. turns to address obstacle* I was just sitting having coffee with my friend there *points* when you walked past. I knew I had to come talk to you. I’m sure you’d agree. *turn to target* Your friend is gorgeous.
[it's a strong stop cos they are clearly in a hurry but show no problem staying to talk. It's kind of arbitrary to say one is a target and one is the obstacle because both are stunning]
Krauser: I’m Krauser *shakes hands*
I try to guess they are from Portugal. No, Poland. Why are they in London – they’re models here for a casting call, which they are late for.
Krauser: Modelling’s a bit hit and miss isn’t it. One of my ex-girlfriends was a model and she’d often go a week or two with no work and then suddenly be booked solid Monday to Friday
2-set: Um, kinda.
I feel I’m DLV’ing a little but my opener was strong enough that I get a Facebook and photo with the target:
On the way back to Itsu 2 guys sitting outside Eat stop me and ask if I’m a pick-up artist. We chat and they mention there’s a model studio nearby and that its London Fashion Week. Suddenly I notice a few models walking around with A-Zs. I’ve barely sat back down with Sai when another HB9 Model goes past. I give chase.
This one doesn’t stop for long and though she’s really nice and polite it’s clearly not going anywhere. Nonetheless I push her into giving me a photo:
Finally I sit down. Sai is “fucking hell mate, can you not just drink your coffee with me.” We soon go off and try to track down this studio. Sai opens a hot black model but it doesn’t stick. We stop by a Starbucks so I can drain my spuds and Sai opens a seated HB6 Fashion Student and we double team her, including me doing a brief photo routine with my two new photos, as if I’m friends with these models.
Headed to Trafalgar Square I get blown out by an HB6 Braces, then get a good stop with HB6 Morocco PhD Student. We chat for about half an hour. She’s really smart and we are talking academics, something I don’t get much chance for. She’s IOIing and really keen to progress the chat. I forget to kino for ages but start it up. She’s nothing spectacular but one of those cases where the brain and manner start to work on you. I number and Facebook close and eject. There was an instantdate waiting to happen but she’s only a 6 and she’s also got braces. Good set.
On the way to catch up with Sai I spot HB9 French. Initially I think she’s the same Polish model I just got the photo with. She’s that pretty, and dressed similar. I actually have to check my camera to confirm it’s not the same person. So I chase across the road and open. She stops well. Her English is a bit weak but so long as I’m slow it’s fine.
Remembering I’m supposed to practice things, I start talking about coffee in tortuous detail, telling her I just found out mocha coffee is named after a city in Africa where they invented it. Just boring shit, as a test. She gets two phone calls while I’m there and both times she forgoes the excuse to walk away, and she seems to actually cut the calls short for me. I lock in to a phone box and try to look disinterestedly alpha while she’s on the calls. We walk together for a while and I allow silences to see what happens. She doesn’t fill them, though it’s not clear if it’s her English, her nerves, or a lack of interest. I still get an easy number close when she takes a third call and says she has to turn off at a junction.
Finally I catch up with Sai and two wings in Leicester Square. I point out a HB6 Scouse for Sai to apocalypse but he dithers so I do it. She takes it well, especially cos Sai jokingly tries to AMOG me but I tune him out so well he gives up. Fair enough, it was his set. I get five minutes with her but no close. I don’t try when I find out she’s only here for the day. I’m not really taking any sets seriously now.
More wandering and the streets are dry now with precious few sets. I open a couple in Trafalgar Square and Covent Garden but just flaky-looking Facebook closes. I’m pleased that I neg a girl for her Inspector Gadget coat. I go for one last set, another HB9 Model, this time from Mongolia. I have fun this time. She’s texting when I open, and a minute in she’s looking at the phone:
Krauser: Hey, pay attention!
HB9: *laughs, puts phone away*
Krauser: Uncross your arms!
HB9: *laughs, uncrosses arms*
I’m definitely integrating the arbitrary boundaries. We chat ten minutes or more and she’s not in a hurry to leave. Another instantdate waiting to happen but I’m just too sarged out to bother. I regret it now, but at the time I was just thinking “for fucks sake, this is my fourth model of the day”.
I go for the number but she refuses and offers to take mine, handing me a pen and paper. I do the “you are one of those number collector girls” routine which softens my jumping through her hoop. As I’m writing it down:
Krauser: Is it even worth me writing this? Are you actually gonna call?
HB9: You’ll have to see
So is this weak cos it’s not a real close, or strong because I’ve kept a HB9 model in set over ten minutes despite (or perhaps because of) barely giving a shit. She gives me some excellent feedback. I’m talking about how I’m reading a book on speedreading. She says “Yeah, you talk fast too” and suddenly I realise why I’ve felt the attraction draining away the longer I’ve been in sets today.
So I end the day with 14 approaches, 3 numbers, 3 additional facebooks and a couple of great social proof photos. And yet I feel mildly disappointed. But isn’t that a sign of my progress that I can be disappointed with this kind of day?