For those of you who are unfamiliar, RSD (Real Social Dynamics) is a PUA company who has a very unique...brand.
They are red-pilled, but pretty cult-like and by in large are in their own weird little place. They have an effective marketing strategy and their content is very hit or miss. RSD hit their prime around 2010-2014 in my opinion, but since then have been in a gradual decline. Some of their older content is pure gold, but their newer stuff is just gimmicky BS.
My friend who lives in LA signed up for Owen Cook's bootcamp, but asked me if I would like to take his place. He offered to fly me out and I figured there was no reason to say no. However, with the rise of dating apps like Tinder/Bumble, I haven't actually done sober cold approaches in close to two years, and I knew I'd struggle a lot. I also was a bit uncomfortable with the idea of a bootcamp due to RSDs cult-like mentality, but I figured I had nothing to lose.
The following is a review of the program itself and a field report for each time I went out. We were scheduled to meet from 10pm-2am on Thur/Fri/Sat as well as a 2pm-6pm on Fri/Sat/Sun afternoon for day game. We ended up staying out every night until about 3am (clubs closed at 2am and we’d do street game/debriefs after).
I hadn’t the faintest idea what I would be getting myself into. I haven't been a part of the RSD community for years, after Alex and Todd left and the whole Julian fiasco I rapidly began to distance myself from them. At several points I tried rewatching their videos but I found them to be gimmicky clickbait marketing BS. While some of their older content is pure gold, you will have to sift through a lot of BS to find it. Owen is particularly bad about this, in his 1-3 hour videos he may only talk about a few things that are truly insightful and meaningful. The rest mostly sounds like the inane ramblings of a narcissist with hypomania and ADD/quasi-autism.
But I digress. I am mainly here to talk about my own experiences and observations about the bootcamp in the most unbiased and objective way I possibly can. For the most part, I went into the bootcamp with an open mind and non-judgmental attitude.
Field Report: Thursday Night
Our initial group meeting was at a restaurant on the Santa Monica pier. In addition to Owen, there were two primary instructors who would be doing most of the work, as well as three assistants. Including myself there were eight students, which brought our group to a total of of fourteen people. The student to staff ratio was decent enough.
We walk to the Santa Monica peer and give in depth introductions and discuss our game level and goals with Owen. We seem to have a good mix of people of different skill levels and personalities, and most of the students were pretty cool. At about 11pm we head into our first venue just off the pier called The Bungalow, which is the name implies, is a former bungalow home converted into a club. It felt very much like a house party with a bar service. There was a ping pong and pool table, two indoor bars, and an unobstructed outdoor patio with a bar as well. Here are a couple of photos to give you an idea. 1 2
We were split into different groups with two or three students per coach. There was no structure or organization beyond that. Within minutes of entering, everyone was off doing their own thing and it felt like I was lone wolfing the experience. I was struggling to open at first, and there were a few times where I felt quite uncomfortable and self-conscious. The club was in actuality not very large, and I made the mistake of continually walking around hesitating and not taking action. I met up with my instructor who essentially advised me to get into social flow state by having brief interactions with several people as I walked around. He said it can be as simple as a high five or saying hi. His thought process was to pump yourself up by recognizing that taking action, no matter how small, was a win for you, and the wins will begin to stack up and get you in a good state.
This was reasonable advice, although I would quickly learn that wasn’t quite my style, I would later learn it was more effective for me to act more natural ie take in the scenery (not “value scanning”), but just being more intentional and deliberate about the actions I take. I do think that he was on the right track though, which is to say that when you’re not in state, you should lower the bar for yourself and not psych yourself out by setting unrealistic expectations.
Later on, I ended up talking with one girl that one of the assistants pointed out, who appeared to be from southeast Asia, though she told me was a mix of various ethnicities. I talked with her for a good while, and she seemed oddly engaged, physically and conversationally, despite me not really doing much. One of her friends even came over and basically gave me the approval and said I was handsome enough to take her home, or something to that effect. I was pretty surprised because my game was actually pretty shit that night. After talking with her for about 15-20 minutes, some dude (not a student) I met earlier that night came up to me and told me there was something he had to tell me. He informed me that the girl and her friends were actually trannies. His friend had actually kissed one of them and was beating himself up over it. I guess they found out by someone else telling them. In hindsight it wasn’t that surprising – even though I didn’t see an adams apple, their voices and general body language just seemed slightly off in a way I couldn’t quite put my finger on. I sort of brushed it off and laughed about it.
I remember that for the most part, the rest of the night had a lot of ups and downs. As long as I was taking action and not walking around hesitating, I felt alright. If I did particularly well in an interaction, I walked away feeling confident. However, this feeling was very fleeting. Within a short amount of time, I would lose the momentum and once again start to get self conscious and hesitant. The night generally progressed like this until the last part, where approached a blonde Irish girl who I talked with for the rest of the night. It wasn't a particularly sexual vibe however, despite some occasional teasing and light physical contact. I did not escalate very far even though I'm pretty certain I could have made out with her at a few points. It ended up with a number close and that was it for the night.
That was the first night I did sober cold approaching in probably almost two years, so I wasn't expecting anything amazing. Plus, it was a Thursday night. Overall I did about as good as I could have hoped for. I think my main issue was being too self-conscious. I found the large crowds and small size of the venue to be a bit intimidating. I think my other problem was being too hesitant in my actions, which caused me to wander around and get increasingly apprehensive about my next approach, instead of simply doing it without thinking.
As far as my general thoughts for the bootcamp itself… I found it to be quite unorganized. I did not see most of the other students or staff for most of the night. Occasionally I would run into my assigned instructor for the night and he would help me take action, but other than that I was sort of left to my own devices. I would have liked to have an established spot in the club for us to regroup, see some demonstrations, and have some sort of game plan.
Field Report: Friday Night
Friday night we went to a venue in downtown LA called Clifton's Republic, which is a three-storied bar/restaurant with a central dancefloor surrounded by balconies on 2nd and 3rd floor. The second floor also had a live band performing in a large room opposite to the balcony. There were also some quieter and more chill areas like this, where it was obviously a lot easier to open.
This night overall was a lot harder for me than the first night. I started the night feeling quite confident and ready, but that feeling didn’t last too long. We were supposed to meet at 10pm, and upon arriving I realized almost one else was there yet. Eventually I ran into two other students who were casually talking to one girl in a big mixed set. I followed them to the third floor bar as they opened a set of three women. I almost said nothing in the first set beyond introductions and said literally nothing during the second set. I don’t particularly like big sets, I didn’t get along too great with one of the other students, and I didn’t like the women at all, and so I felt uncomfortable. Eventually I left and did a couple of quick opens on my own, which I should have done from the start.
A few of us finally meet up with one the instructors who suggested we do the same thing as last night – simply walk through an area and starting small – saying hi, complimenting, adding some sort of value, whatever. The idea again is to get yourself in a flow state where you stop thinking and build momentum by continually taking action and recognizing each action as a win. I did not like this approach at all this time, and I could tell one of the other students didn’t either. We did this for a while and eventually started splitting up again amid the chaos. That particular instructor spent most of the night in the center dance floor area, and may have been helping other students, though I don’t know for sure.
The first half of the night was brutal, really. I hardly did any approaches and the ones I did went poorly. I ran into the problem of walking around and not taking action, which would make the next approach even harder from the constant decision fatigue that results in backing out of doing various potential approaches. Even though it was frowned upon to drink, I eventually caved and bought a double order of Jameson. I downed it in about 10 seconds and the rest of the night went a lot better. It was just enough to take the edge off without making me feel sloppy.
At one point shortly after the drink I approached a mixed set (2 girls, 1 guy) and was chatting with the two girls for about 5 or 10 minutes until I told them what sort of work I do (affiliate marketing/SEO) and they said their guy friend was trying to get into the same thing. I ended up talking with him for about 10 minutes about SEO and other topics and that actually pumped me up more than talking to the two women.
I had a very similar experience the last time I was at XS in Vegas earlier this year -- where after having a very deep and meaningful conversation with my friend, I felt a lot more social and confident than I would have felt after superficial conversation with some vapid basic bitch. Shortly the conversation with my friend at XS, a hot brunette walked by me and I stuck out my hand and pulled her in with zero hesitation, and was one of the best opens I had done in a long time.
Anyway, I find it a little amusing/peculiar that intellectually stimulating conversation (which is always with men) actually gets me more excited than flirting with some girl. I think that was actually the most important lesson I learned that night: talking to men can be just as important as talking to women, at least indirectly for pumping your state and becoming more social.
In general, the night had a lot of ups and downs just like the previous, especially the first half. At one point I had actually considered walking out, though after having that drink things went a lot better. I found that many of the interactions I had went a lot better than the previous night, there was one girl in particular who was definitely into me and may have even gone home with me. But at one point she accused me of “mansplaining” and lost interest. If this was a shit test I was completely unprepared for it. I tried to tell this to the other instructor and he didn’t know what that was, nor did one of the other students. It’s funny that the radical left/feminists think this is a mainstream concept when in fact most people have never even heard the term.
Anyway. While I was alone for a good portion of the night, in the 2nd half I started running into some of the other instructors/assistants/students who helped wing in mixed sets. The other main instructor was some dude Russia who had short blonde dreads on one side. He had a very different style than the previous instructor who was a tall skinny black dude with huge feather earrings. The Russian instructor seemed more focused on practical game, such as making sure I was squared off and directly facing someone if I talked to them, or making myself look less serious by using light humor and being more playful, which he stated is something he had struggled with as well. I don’t remember much else of what he said but he actually followed me and another student for a while and watched our sets and gave us feedback as we did them, which I found helpful.
The rest of the night was more or less the same stuff. Some solo approaches, some mixed sets with instructors/assistants/other students. Nothing particularly noteworthy happened for the last hour or so. As the club closed, we did some street game which was pretty much a shit show for everyone. One of the instructors (the black one) told me to go approach a some tall blonde girl who was with a guy. The guy threatened to knock me out after doing so, which wasn’t the first time that’s happened. I wasn’t particularly affected by it but he made a big deal out of it and saying I should have made a light joke or something instead of walking away. After doing more street game, we had another debrief and we all went home around 3 or so.
Field Report: Sat Afternoon
By this point I should specify that I’m from the midwest and was getting pretty bad jet lag at this point. We had stayed out until 3am the previous two nights, not actually getting to bed until 4am, which for me basically meant I was going to bed at 7am. To make it worse, I was only getting a few hours of sleep. I was pretty exhausted Saturday. We had made plans to do daygame at the Bungalow again from 2pm to 6pm, which I was not looking forward to.
I decided to circumnavigate this handicap by drinking a lot of coffee and taking a modest dose of a stimulating strain of kratom. My mood was actually fairly peculiar that day. The stimulants made me feel awake and engaged with the world but my mental fatigue sort of shut off that overly analytical and critical part of my mind, so I felt good.
Upon arriving in the Bungalow, I was pretty shocked. It was even more crowded than it was Friday night, there were more women, and the women were all 7s or above. I am not exaggerating when I say that some of the hottest girls I’ve seen in LA were all there. And despite the fact that it was the daytime, I found myself able to start opening quickly and without much difficulty. The first few approaches I did were all two sets, and they lasted at least 5 minutes. The last one went a little poorly at the end when I said something about her eyelashes looking weird or something, but otherwise they went fairly well. The atmosphere was very relaxed and I got the impression that most of the women either hadn’t been approached or weren’t expecting to get approached much. It was also less loud so I was able to do more chill relaxed game which is far better for my style.
After doing 4-5 opens I started to feel quite overwhelmed, however. As I had stated before, the strategy that my instructor had tried to get us to do where we focus on doing rapid, brief interactions seemed pretty ineffective for me. After doing several opens almost back to back, I found myself feeling like I was redlining. The place was also getting very packed and I felt the need to go for a walk or something. I actually walked around the block to get more coffee, and that helped re energize me a lot. On my way back to the club, near the entrance a legit 9.5/10 girl said something to me about my coffee as I walked past her, and I ended up sticking with her for a while before going in. Some dude walked past us commenting on her appearance, asking if she was my girl. This at least told me that our body language must not have looked too platonic, so I was probably doing something right with her.
I couldn’t really keep her attention once all her big group of friends wanted to go in. I would later see her inside the club a few times, though I never tried reengage her since she was literally always getting hit up by some guy. I did a few more solo approaches, and the last one was another two set where two other students would later join in. One of the girls was kind of a bitch to them and left with her friend, annoyed about something they said. As she left she stated that she liked me because I was nice, which I jokingly said I was insulted by. At that point I felt pretty fried and walked to the pier to relax, at that point it was past 6 and I decided to leave and go eat dinner and change.
I learned a couple of big lessons from this. The first one is something I had been realizing from the previous two days, and this day established it even more in my head. I learned that I RAPIDLY lose state in between sets. Even if the sets go well, I end up feeling like I need to recharge afterwards for a while. This is especially true when you're sober, alcohol seems to act like a social lubricant which prevents you from losing momentum quickly. This was particularly true today, where at many points I felt like I was overexerting myself in a sense, and blowing myself out mentally. I find lifting weights to be an apt analogy – especially powerlifting – if you’re lifting heavy, it’s imperative to rest inbetween sets otherwise the next set will not be at 100% capacity, or worse you may injure yourself.
I should also mention at this point that none of the instructors were actually there that day. So basically everything I did was solely of my own volition. This brings me to my second point – I learned that I do not need others to motivate me or wings to help me – I can do this on my own and ultimately that’s all that matters. This was by far the best experience I had during the entire bootcamp, despite not getting makeouts or numbers, I genuinely had fun and took a lot of action.
I also learned was that kratom + coffee is a social wonderdrug.
Field Report: Sat Night
This isn’t going to be so much a field report as it a report on my experiences with Owen Cook of RSD. We had a debrief at 10:30pm at a club in Santa Monica called Victorian. I won’t bother describing this club though because other than the debrief, I didn’t spend a single moment in the club the entire night.
The previous two days I had seen very little of him as I had not been assigned with him yet. This night he took me and two other students to go outside. At this point it was close to 11pm. He started out talking about some sort of marketing strategy in which you slowly get someone interested in you by offering high value stuff for free, whereby you increasingly charge more for each tier of product/service as you lure the customer in more and more. He said this was how RSD operates – free tours and tons of free content on Youtube, and eventually people end up spending $3000 to take a bootcamp.
He then talked about how Instagram has been a game changer for him. Instead of having to keep track of various women texting him and trying to remember all their names and faces, he simply uses his Instagram to get a constant funnel of women investing and chasing in him with very little effort on his part. He says that his IG is mostly women and he gets them interested by inviting them to party at his Hollywood Hills villa (which was pretty dope btw). I had to infer this part myself, but I think he was basically saying is that when women see his IG, this gets them hamstering and shows them that he’s a high value man in high demand, or something to this effect. You have to understand that this guy is a bit crazy with some intense ADD, hypomania, and almost psychotic behavior, and it’s hard to follow his train of thought. But for the most part he spend something close to 2 hours talking about something that could have been explained in two minutes. As it was nearing 1am I realized we would likely have very little time to do anything in the club.
Once he finished his speech/lecture, he finally started opening. This is what really blew me away. This is when I realized he truly was one of the greatest PUAs of our time. He approached almost every girl that walked by, some even came up to him. One of the craziest ones he did is going up to a Spanish couple who looked quite closed off, started speaking to them in fluent Spanish, and ended it with a group hug with both of them, with them both leaving looking happier than they were in the start.
This part is a little fuzzier for me because I was quite exhausted, and I apologize for not remembering it more clearly. But this was quite a sight to behold, it was simply astonishing. If you watch his infield videos, they'll give you an idea. For the skeptics out there, he's legit. He must have gotten 20 different girls added on his IG in a very short amount of time. Most of them seemed very interested in him. It wasn’t just the fact that almost every girl liked him, it was the fact that he approached EVERYONE. It didn’t matter if it was a mixed set of two girls and two guys, he would approach them and simply befriend the guys. But I think the most astonishing is how effective he was at it all. It seemed almost flawless, and he seemed to be able to draw these women towards him almost effortlessly. You could tell this was a guy who perfected this art over many many years.
Eventually he started pushing us to do some approaches, which went more or less okay but nothing particularly noteworthy happened. By the time we started approaching it was past 2am and we were mostly dealing with girls who were more interested in food and ubers than getting hitup by some guy. Eventually the night fizzled down and we had a long debrief once again. We all went our separate ways and said our goodbyes. I felt completely exhausted and it was a fairly intense night overall. I just wish I had more to say about Owen’s game, but it was nothing short of magic. His infield videos are not faked, I was there to bear witness to it in person. Go watch them if you're curious.
I certainly don't think the bootcamp was worth anywhere near $3000, maybe a couple hundred at best. The severe lack of organization/structure and planning made it annoying for me. There was very little live feedback and demonstrations, and I didn't find the debriefs to be particularly useful either. But since it was all free (except for all the damn uber rides), it was worth doing. It reminded me how challenging and rewarding cold approach can be. And getting to see a master PUA work his magic was also pretty mesmerizing, this guy is truly one of the best PUAs of our time.
The main thing I took out of this is that I don't need RSD or anyone else to push me. I was effectively alone for good chunks of the nights and I was able to approach purely of my own volition, despite not doing solo/sober cold approach in a long time. You don't need to read PUA books or learn game to pickup women, ultimately it comes down to simply taking action and being willing to recognize where you fucked up. I didn't really learn anything from this bootcamp to be honest. Tyler's pep talk was mostly nonsense and bragging about the women he talked about. I wouldn't even be able to tell you what I was able to learn from seeing him in action other than the fact that he has mastered the craft in his own unique style.
The bootcamp also decreased my interest in using dating apps. While they do help you learn things like handling logistics, LMR, etc, all they really do is help you get laid, which in my opinion is more of a side effect of pickup, not the goal. There is something about cold approach in particular that can be life changing. It is one of those disciplines which features meta-skills that can be applied to other areas of your life.
But again, I think it's important to remember that getting women should never be the primary goal of your life. Pickup often seems to pedestalize women and make people think that getting laid will make you happy. It won't. A meaningful and purposeful life is the only life worth living. And if you only focus on getting laid, you'll soon realize that blowing a load in a wet hole is doing nothing to improve the quality of your life.
In short, the point of pickup not to get laid - it is to push yourself out of your comfort zone and recognize your weaknesses and strengths. Pickup can serve as a catalyst for transformation.