I slept till 9 today, and I could tell myself that was because I was tired out by yesterday’s work. What it really was though, was my subconscious trying to keep me away from the convention center.
I finally dragged myself there around 2 pm (after going to breakfast in the floral district at Poppy & Rose) loitered in the press room for another hour, and at long last, decided to brave the game-crazed masses. It took me all of an hour to breeze through both exhibit halls. I’ve never enjoyed big crowds, but the last few years E3′s crowded craziness has gotten to be more than I can take.
Partly it’s me getting tired of seeing the same games (more or less) every year. I still get excited on a daily basis about smaller games I find on Steam, but my heart no longer goes pitter-pat at the sight of another hundred million dollar space battle, car chase or monster slaughter. Partly it’s that there’s no way in Hell I’ll stand in a 2 hour line just to see a game demo. And partly it’s my strong dislike of being pressed between sweaty guys dressed like Mario.
Fortunately for me, I had an event to attend in the late afternoon–a screening of an upcoming documentary about ESports called All Work, All Play: The Pursuit of ESports Glory–at an independent theater near my hotel, and that gave me an excuse to leave. Somehow I managed to avoid being sucked into “The Taylor Swift Experience”…
…on my way to the venue, and I got to check out a good chunk of downtown L.A. Despite the grunge, (the entire area smells like it was boiled in urine) and the constant fwap-fwap-fwap of police helicopters, downtown L.A. is pretty interesting. I found some great-looking restaurants, a fantastic market that’s been there since the early years of the 20th century…
…and this cool mural of Anthony Quinn doing his Zorba dance for a clothing company.
After the documentary (which was well worth seeing, btw) I was pretty peckish, and as luck would have it, two blocks from my hotel I found the Nickel Diner. What an awesome place! I had a great steak salad with homemade mint lemonade and then the waitress talked me into the S’mores cake. She even blow-torched the meringue right at my table.
What luck eh? Such a fantastic end to a day that could have been all flashing lights and mob mentality.