One Hundred and Four Weekends

To: Luke
From: Owen
Re: Happy Early Easter


Today marks my second year anniversary with the site since Brian hired me. Back in 2008, needing a weekend editor, he called me out of the blue and asked if I'd seen his post calling for applicants for the job. I was too ashamed to admit at the time that I was only a casual reader, and in fact hadn't looked at Kotaku in about a month. But he convinced me to do it and, of course, here we are.

Given the nature of the hire, there's been some good-natured ribbing from readers about how I took a job from someone who would have been more deserving, and there's actually truth to that. I had no profile or experience within this space of writing before Kotaku. Had Brian wanted someone with experience, just about any candidate would have been more preferable. But from working with him before, I think he trusted my news judgment and dependability regardless of subject, something he really needed when someone else would be minding his store for a solid 48 hours.


On Wednesday I talked to a graduating college senior from my home state looking for advice about getting into covering video games. I told him, as I tell everyone asking this question, that I ended up here by not aspiring to be here. I aspired to be a sports writer, after all. And I think this is how a lot of people end up in their gigs, for better or for worse.

I shared other thoughts about the job I do: journalism is a practice, games are a subject, writing is a job - and none makes any of the others more special. But I can't give advice on how one ascends through a meritocracy when I never did so myself, and when such a meritocracy doesn't even exist in the first place. In 2001, the Daily Camera had six guys more objectively qualified to cover Boulder, already working for the same parent company even, when the Rocky Mountain News chose instead to hire me and my glamour degree. Through that job I came to know Brian. I owe roughly the past dozen years of gainful and rewarding employment to personal connections more than a clipping file, to be coldly honest.

This past week, Frank Deford, a writer I admire tremendously, published a brief memoir in Sports Illustrated that opens with his candid assessment of how he got here. Deford admitted that, as a white guy with an Ivy League pedigree, born in an era of declining births, he faced so little competition that he began his career in 1962 at the head of the line, virtually guaranteed for success. I respect that he would make such a humble admission. I've benefited from some of the same advantages, and some different ones, but this seems a good time to make a similar acknowledgment.

Though I don't often show it, I am mindful every day of my good fortune to have spent the past 104 weekends with Kotaku, and I look forward to at least 104 more, and to continuing to justify my presence on this staff of writers.


Some highlights from the weekend:

The iPad's Arrival
iPad Review: Is This A Capable Gaming System?
The Ultimate iPad Launch Game Round-Up
How Big Is The iPad, Really?
iPad Unboxing: You Will Believe A Man Can Open A Box
I'm The Asshole At Starbucks With The iPad
Here's Where You Can Stick Your iPad


K Monthly - March 2010


Other Good Stuff
Stick Jockey: With a Video Game, a Small League Gate-Crashes the Big Time
"Resident Evil: Afterlife" Trailer Doesn't Reinvent Game Movies As We Know Them
Super Meat Boy Makes iPhone Into Tiger Handheld
Religion in Games: Less a Leap of Faith, More a Suspension of Belief
Kotaku 'Shop Contest: X-Ray Edition Winners
Maybe This Is One Reason the Stimulus Package Cost So Much


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Owen, I usually don't do this, but I gotta tell you that you're my favorite editor. Hard to find people who sympathize with me about sports games, let alone about sports in general. Your Stickjockey posts are the highlight of the week on Kotaku (that's my opinion of course). Glad you're here with us!