Salutations and such. In this installment of neilsclark.com I'll give a modestly sensible accounting of the adventures in Los Angeles, a city which we might otherwise call the 'massively single player game.'
I set out in the evening, about 9PM, and drove from Burien, WA, to Morro Bay, CA. With a brief stop of about two hours in between, I arrived at my Co-Author Shavaun's house in the late afternoon. The trip was safe, the largest threat probably being heart failure caused by ingestion of something like 7 Red Bulls.
I brought Shavaun, her husband, and myself cigars. The next morning I left for Los Angeles, and checked into an amazing hostel. If you're staying in LA on the cheap, I'd highly recommend the perfect mix of economy, safety, and charm at Gramercy Place. The more fun stories are all a bit juicy to paste here. I wouldn't, for instance, want to trouble the two ladies who wracked the hostel's on-Demand for softcore pornography (though I'm pretty sure we found the harder stuff). I was, of course, innocently and diligently working on the transcript for a presentation to be given the following afternoon.
Odd that I never finished the thing.
In a colorfully spontaneous adventure to meet up with USC games profs, I got a chance to meet Henry Jenkins, who is just as kindly and wonderfully nerdy as he seemed in all the videos I'd seen, and texts I'd read. He joined a gathering of other games educators as I detailed this ethics course I've been teaching. In attendance were PhDs Jose Zagal and Susan Scheibler, who also teach ethics courses to games students, and a cast of other characters I'd met through the two-day summit.
I never went to E3 or any of its parties. I gave my tickets away, and instead drove to Santa Monica, and up around the Mulholland Fwy with a games academic from Hong Kong.
In the days that followed I visited family that I hadn't seen in fifteen years - the trip was long overdue. My last leg was from Santa Ynez, back up to Tacoma to peek in on a good friend's birthday. I started this one at 9pm as well. Unlike the previous attempt, done after staying up till 2 helping a friend tile his bathroom, this final leg was being tried after sleepless nights of Norwegian hanky-panky in the hostel bunk below me, and of the generally reduced sleep one experiences while seeing good people and places.