Mystery also pioneered the now-widely imitated weekend-long “workshops” or “boot camps” in hotels aimed at turning AFCs into PUAs nearly overnight.
Attendees are shepherded to bars for hands-on experience by master-PUA “trainers” with their own pseudonymous monickers (Captain Jack, Hi Roller, Keychain, and so forth). Mystery’s website, Venusian Arts, doesn’t list prices, but the three-day workshops marketed by Venusian Arts’s top competitor, Love Systems—run by Nick Savoy (real name Nicholas Benedict), a business partner of Mystery’s until a nasty 2007 split—cost $2,997 apiece, with a $999 deposit.
They all feature pictures of scantily clad supermodel-like females and the same acronym-laden jargon ultimately traceable to Jeffries: a “PUA” is a “pickup artist”; an “AFC” is an “average frustrated chump” who hasn’t paid a guru to learn how to be a PUA; an “HB” is a “hot babe”; an “IOI” is an HB’s “indicator of interest” in a PUA, such as leaning in his direction or “accidentally” brushing his hand.
Jeffries’s most famous pupil is a Canadian-born former stage magician called Erik James Horvat-Markovic who subsequently changed his name first to Erik von Markovik and later to just plain Mystery.
Pepper Schwartz, a longtime sex columnist and a sociology professor at the University of Washington, told ABC News in November: Before, guys did this gross kind of sexual behavior, and we said, “Boys will be boys,” but now it’s boys and girls. Schwartz seemed unaware that booze-fueled hooking-up lasts well beyond the frat-party years. breathe a sigh of relief or even liberation watching Samantha down another tequila, unrepentantly ogle the sex god at the end of the bar, and get richer and more beautiful with age, with no STDs or furies pursuing her? around the time of the film’s release revealed that the typical female resident of Manhattan, who marries later on average than almost every other woman in the country, has 20 sex partners during her lifetime.