Tuesday, June 03, 2003

It’s All a Blur

Mike Benson Recounts His Days on the E3 Floor

Relax; I won’t bore you with another round-up of the games at E3. By now, you’ve already read about a million of them, and I’m sure they were just fine. In fact, I couldn’t recap the show even if I wanted to. Here’s all I remember of it:

1. Cold concrete steps outside the convention center, early in the morning, as my crew and I prepare to go inside and start filming. I’m sitting on them, or kneeling, listening to a speech about walkie-talkie etiquette. I start to shiver, and clutch my flimsy Styrofoam cup of 7-11 coffee, which smells like a mixture of vanilla and ashtray.

2. Staring up at the baseball-field-sized poster for Rockstar’s upcoming videogame adaptation of The Warriors, Walter Hill’s classic 1979 cult film. Shifting my weight from side-to-side, I remember first watching the movie in high school with my friend Rebecca. We were crying with laughter, rewinding the scene where baddie Luther taunts the protagonists with “Warriors…Come out and playyy…”

3. Trailing Lance Bass with a throng of other production assistants as I help run security for his appearance. We have to follow him from the South to the West Hall, and make sure he isn’t mobbed by frantic fans. Of course, since E3 is attended primarily by men in their late 20s, that problem never presents itself. As we walk hurriedly towards the entrance doors, one angry attendee remarks sarcastically, “Why don’t you guys fan out a bit and take up more of the aisle!” Momentarily, I feel angry.

4. A very heavy backpack, full of camera equipment that eventually pulls my shoulders down to my waist.

I was at the show for all three days, and had a very fun time this year, probably because I helped film the show. We worked in a group towards a common goal, and the mixture of camaraderie and exhaustion made us punchy. By the end, we were laughing at anything and everything that moved, even if it wasn’t cel-shaded.

-Mike Benson