My friend Trevor isn’t here. This is just me, at this recording studio, with the guy who owns the studio.
“We’ve worked with a lot of high profile people.” He has stopped in front of several pictures on the wall, presumably of high profile people. He gestures at one of an older guy, grinning. I nod as if I know who it is.
“Rob Schneider,” he says.
“Yes, right.” Man, what happened to Rob Schneider? What a long long fall from A Fork in the Tale.
“He was in town promoting one of his movies a few years ago. We worked with him on that.”
“Which movie? I’m not sure. I think there was an animal in it. Maybe a monkey or a talking dog.”
“I don’t think I saw that one.”
“My kids love him. We liked the one where he played a wedding singer. I forget what it was called.”
“The Wedding Singer. Yeah, that one was pretty good.”
“Right in here.”
We’re in a conference room that looks like it doesn’t get used much. There’s some kid in here. He shakes my hand and introduces himself as Nick. I later find out he’s the owner’s son-in-law. This is Nick’s first job after having graduated from high school.
“So we’d like to work with you,” the owner of the studio says. “Podcasts. The wave of the future, right? We’re interested in creating some videogaming podcasts and your editor referred us to you.”
“Well, I’ve never done one before. I mean, I listen to them. 1up, IGN, Gamespot, that sort of thing, but…”
I don’t actually. But it sounds like a safe thing to say. I’m pretty sure all those guys have podcasts.
“We don’t want to do anything like that. We’re looking for something different. We thought you could help us, we thought you might have some ideas.”
I immediately imagine myself reading some of my reviews or columns, maybe interviewing someone like David Jaffe or John Carmack, asking them the sort of hard hitting questions a real journalist would ask. ‘Mr. Jaffe, tell me, were the flying Pegasus parts really necessary in God of War 2?’ ‘Why are there ads in Quake Wars, Mr. Carmack?’ Perhaps I would write an opinion piece on the state of the industry and read it into a microphone every week, like Edward R. Murrow. I might even smoke a cigarette, wear a fedora. Can you smoke in those recording booths these days? Probably not. And are fedoras expensive?
I could sign off with some sort of distinctive catch phrase. ‘Good night, and good playing’. No, too derivative. ‘So long, and happy playing’. Too Douglas Adamsy. ‘Play hard, and have fun.’ Yeah, maybe that. Maybe ‘Until next time, play hard, and have fun.’
“Yeah, I think I could come up with something.”
“Actually, we were hoping you could talk to that friend of yours you write about. I believe his name is Trevor.”
To be continued…
Tom Chick has been writing about videogames for fifteen years. His work appears in Games for Windows Magazine, Yahoo, Gamespy, Sci-Fi, and Variety. He lives in Los Angeles. Shoot Club appears in this space every Thursday.