Jimmy and Tony were clearly the leaders of RSG and not just because they were the founding members. Both had amassed immense experience picking up girls. Jimmy had rattled over a hundred girls since going to university. A phenomenal number for late-90s and early-00s England that simply didn’t have the “hook-up culture” of modern USA universities and metropolitan bar scenes. He also had high standards, which really depresses a man’s lay count.
Jimmy was a smart methodical man in all areas of social dynamics, and he’d work a bar with the same precision as Mystery advised. At university his creativity and strength of character had established him as leader of his small pack of bad lads, then he’d take them out drinking, causing a ruckus, then see which girls gave him the eye. In many respects, RSG was just a more grown-up version of his bad lads gang.
Tony was a sniper with women and deeply immersed in romantic fiction. He worked out, was an excellent salsa dancer, and dressed like a modern-day Valentino. He’d shaped himself into the smouldering masculine archetype women fantasise about while reading novels. He didn’t like cold approach but had learned how to ease into sets in bars or on the dance floor. Often, the women came to him. By the time I met him he’d rattled three hundred women and kept copious notes on each seduction.
The penny wouldn’t drop until much, much later, but the innovation of RSG’s coaching was our ability to blend the mechanical systematic style of Mystery Method (via Jimmy) with the masculine polarity and seductive vibe of romance fiction (via Tony). The West Coast PUA movement that had inspired us was almost entirely the former, and it felt unbalanced and hollow.
RSG would grow and evolve. Ace brought in his love for the douchebag game of Hank Moody in Californication. I took a one-one-one with him in Jewel bar in early 2010 and was amazed with his playful arrogance. Midway through the evening, I brought over a pair of Chinese English girls who told me they worked in city law firms. Ace sat in a chair, legs wide open, a whiskey glass dangling precariously from his hand as I approached him.
“Who are these bitches?” he asked.
Both girls cracked up laughing and couldn’t keep their hands off him the rest of the night. He never fucked them but it felt like watching a glitch in the matrix; he was so rude and they lapped it up. Later that night as we stood outside in the smoking area I said to him, “if there was anyone in RSG whose game I want to emulate, it’s yours.”
I’d learn incredible things from being surrounded 24/7 by talented seducers. “Project London” would be a pivotal period in my life and this is its story.
“We’ll each have an en-suite room,” Jimmy enthused over the phone, one month prior. “The location is amazing. It’s probably a third of the market rate, with all utilities included.” Standing in the tiny backyard of my grotty south London flat, I can’t say I wasn’t tempted.
“It’s £300 a month.”
“How?” I replied, “How is that possible?”
There had to be a catch. I lived in a ground floor one-bedroom flat in an old Victorian building, a thirty-minute walk from my office at St Paul’s on the river. I had a lounge, bedroom, small dining room, kitchen, and tiny enclosed yard. It was £900 a month rent, and another £200 to pay off the council tax and bills.
This sounds OK, right? A decent-sized flat in a central area.
No. I lived in Kennington, which is next to Elephant & Castle. The price is low (for London) because it’s a majority black and Muslim area and thus, absolutely disgusting. South London is like a suburb of Monrovia or Mogadishu. Every time I went outside I was reminded that my country was under foreign occupation, and I was being taxed to feed, cloth, house, and educate the invaders. It wasn’t good for my vibe.
“Well, it’s not exactly a typical renter’s agreement,” he responded. “We have to keep the gypsies and squatters out.”
I don’t like gypsies, their travelling parasitical lifestyle being very much at odds with the host culture in Britain. Vlad Dracul had the right idea when he invited them all to a feast then barred the door and torched the place with them still inside.
“You’ve got an hour to decide. The letting agency said they’ll hold it for us until 4pm, and after that they are calling their waiting list. Really, you don’t want to miss this.”
I looked around my pokey little flat with its chipped paint, rising damp, and bad memories. It was where my ex-wife and I had first moved in together after the wedding and where things had all fallen apart three years later. Every room held memories that scaled the full range of emotion. There was the kitchen that she’d once lovingly kitted out with red pots, pans, and other assorted utensils, and which she’d used to cook me a different meal every evening, always delicious. Now it was bare and unused as I tended to get takeaways on my way home from work. Then there was the dining room with the walnut-shaped table around which my old friends would gather every second Thursday for a poker night, until they all quietly disassociated themselves from me after my divorce. I barely saw my old friends now. Rock Solid Game was my new social circle.
I visualized my walking home every evening from the investment bank where I worked, just across the Thames; a brisk half hour’s walk ending at my 1930s-era apartment block, where I stepped in off the street and knocked on my door with an expectant smile. My wife would always be waiting for me, wearing her make-up and a beaming smile, and then stand on tiptoes to welcome me with a kiss before ushering me through to the dining room, where dinner was on the table. That felt great every single time.
But I also remembered making the same walk home in February 2009, after we’d separated, to find she’d come by in the afternoon to strip the apartment of every single one of her possessions, including all the cute accoutrements that had added life to it. She’d left £400 in an envelope with a note that it should cover the shared property she’d taken.
My flat now seemed like a dilapidated old prison. In spite of that, since becoming a player, I’d managed to fuck a bunch of new girls on the same bed (and couch, floor, and walnut-shaped table).
However, the apartment was part of my old life. I needed a clean break, so the decision wasn’t hard to make. I tipped all my bank statements into a bag, grabbed my chequebook and passport then took a tube to the agency’s offices in Islington. I was taking the room sight-unseen.
When I finally moved out a week later, as I closed the door for the final time, it felt like a grand symbolic gesture. I didn’t so much feel that I was finishing a chapter of my life, more that I was opening a brand new book.