Friday, November 05, 2010

The Enterprise - 2

When I came back out Elaine was waiting.

"Let's meet Bob. He leads the creative department. You'd be reporting to him."

"As an editor?"

She smiled as though she hadn't heard my question. Or hadn't known it was a question. She led me to the far corner of the office and introduced me to Bob, a gruff, bald man. He peered at me warily.

"Do you like anime?"

I thought fast. "Yes."

"Let me show you some concepts," he said, indicating that I should sit beside him. "Here are some personifications of the Product."

Bob paged through a series of digital sketches on his screen. They depicted the same cute robot that Elaine had shown me, but in a variety of settings and attire. The robot in a tuxedo. The robot playing tennis. The robot in a Native American headdress and warpaint, wielding a bow.

"These are merely representations of the Product," he stated solemnly. "Not the Product itself. Do you understand?"

I said that I did.

"Your job would be to extend these representations into the editorial realm."

"That's exciting."

"Not analogs. Not companion pieces. Your mandate would be to codify the spirit of the enterprise as expressed by management. The owners of the vision."

I endeavored to give him the impression that I understood perfectly.

"We'd like to task you with nothing less than establishing and maintaining the personality of the Product," he stated gravely, making sure I heard each word.

It did have a pleasing ring to it.

"Can you outline some ideas and shoot them back to me? Maybe we can talk again next week," he said, and we shook hands and parted ways.

I took the elevator back down with a man who appeared to work with the company in some vaguely senior capacity. He was tall, thin, handsome. Bored. He carried himself with the mix of nonchalance and ennui that can only come from a lifetime of entitlement and privilege. He introduced himself as Derek.

"I'm Paul," I said, shaking his hand.

"You gonna get on board, Paul?"

"Looks like I might."

His tone suddenly turned serious.

"This thing, this idea, this thing we have here," he said, indicating the third-floor office with an upward glance. "It's a big, big, big, big deal."

"I get the feeling."

"Lemme tell you something. The only other time I ever felt like this–I'm not lying to you. I sat with Jerry Yang when he founded Yahoo."

"That right?"

"That feeling, that electricity in the air."


"Can you feel it?"


"So can I," he said. The elevator doors opened and he exited with a thumbs up and a smile.