Saturday, September 11

A week in Vancouver, BC.

At the border to Canada I didn't expect trouble, perhaps that was a mistake. Upon arriving at LAX I was expecting racial profiling or general US paranoia but was instead greeted warmly (relatively) and wished a pleasant stay. The guy at the Canadian crossing looked at me like I was guilty until proven otherwise. I later heard they've been doing this to anyone who isn't white. Assholes!

I am staying with Mitch Lagran and his gilfriend. He works for Rockstar and knows a lot of other talent working in Vancouver. It seems to be a very incestuous scene up here with lots of work. From what I can gather you can in fact get a job here, but keeping it or even liking it can be challenging.
We immediately visited the Aquarium which was very cool and continues my theme of gamers being fascinated by learning. Mitch and I had a good chat about that just after meeting each other. He recommended a book called A Theory of Fun which I will definitely read.
I don't know what to make of Vancouver. Walking round I couldn't find anything I was really interested by and I was accosted by several bums with elaborate stories. Tim Hortons has become some kind of refuge, a place I can go and hide. But even there the obscene 12% sales tax strikes! They don't incorporate it into their listed prices which always stings. I bought a nice jacket for the cold weather and some new jeans after my others tore and the sales tax really hurt.

Poutine is really good though, as is Mt Whistler. On Wednesday night I met my old work friends Jeff and Alex along with Colin and Jag (who supplied some poignant dialog on obesity for my film) and we went to stay in a resort at the base of the mountain. On Thursday we went to the summit and I was completely blown away by just how awesome our planet can be. It makes a pleasant change from dry bush and endless flatlands, and I look forward to going there again in the winter when there is snow to slide about on.

Last night we went to a draw jam at a pub called St Augustine and enjoyed Pumpkin Beer and an Imperial Citric Ale. I met people from all facets of th industry and got some insight into a variety of companies. It seems they fall into one of two categories; companies like Blizzard who celebrate their game launch with Champaign Luncheons and trips to Las Vegas, and companies like EA who celebrate by firing the development team that actually made the game. I can't help but think about this city and Erin and my future... my brow furrows and I just feel like I need to get home and regroup. My resolution does not waver. At this point I can only go forward; it's too late for me to do anything else with my life! But I'm terribly anxious. Life seems like PAX: every second you take deciding what to do others are getting in line, while you play one game you miss countless others, and at the end of each day you wonder where you went wrong. There's another PAX in six months, but this is the only life I'll ever have.

No comments: