First off, Brian Ekberg isn't dead. That's not why we're holding a picture of him on the iPad. He lives outside of Seattle now (message me and I'll give you his address and tell you where he hides his extra front door key), so it wasn't really practical for him to join Shanker, Homer, and me for game 4 of the NBA Finals a few weeks ago.
Ask any of the four of us, and we'll all tell you that doing The Lineup was the most fun we had at GameSpot. It was a unique challenge to present sports games in a way that both sports-game fans and non-fans alike would enjoy, and I think that by the end of the first season, we had really found our way. Unfortunately, Homer and Ekberg were jealous of the money, women, and accolades that Shanker and I were enjoying, and they hatched an insidious plot to have Shanker and I killed. Lucky for us, GameSpot laid Shanker and me off the day we were supposed to be killed. Not only did we live, but Homer and Ekberg couldn't get their deposit back from the hitman because they tried to cancel the hit within 24 hours. There's a chance this isn't exactly how it all went down, but I'm the only one that's not too lazy to write a blog post, so I get to tell the story however I'd like.
If you haven’t watched this amazing, thought-provoking show, you can find it right here. Watch a little and come back – I’ll wait!
What are we up to now? Let's see...
Shank-Diggity (he calls himself this) has been working as a contractor for Wells Fargo for several years now. He does something boring with app development and testing. But that doesn't mean his life has been boring.
A few notable Shanker facts:
- Bet so much money on a Mayweather fight that his wager actually moved the line. He won the bet and did nothing interesting with the money.
- Firmly believes that an insect fighting league on YouTube would be a huge hit. One reason: "Dude, let's say you've got this undefeated Beetle, and he dies one night. You just go get another giant Beetle and replace him. Nobody knows. You don't have to pay the talent!"
- Still thinks he could possibly beat a bear in an octagon, and tried to convince me that he can run 20mph, but then backed out when I offered to pace him in a car because he "didn't have the right shoes."
- Forces Aaron to play the role of Tom Brady in press conferences so he can grill him with Deflategate questions. This happens via text and the phone.
Brian works for Turn 10 Studios, where his primary role is telling the Forza community to "go fast" and whatnot. I did a little research though, and it turns out he's doing his best work on his personal Twitter page. Here are just some of the gems you'll get if you follow @Mechberg:
- I can't remember the last time I stapled something
- OK, that's pretty good
- Just successfully opened a box of Nerds #2015
- What are the Jerky Boys doing now without phone books
Homer still laughs loud. So very, very loud. He's also working for PlayStation these days, so if you felt like the E3 trailers were just a bit more magical this year, you're not crazy, that's Homer's magical fairy dust in action.
But things haven't been all rainbows and unicorns in Homer's world. It pains me to type this, but he came dangerously close to becoming Canadian. The wound is too fresh to share all the details, but there are rumors that at least one of his children has been heard saying "aboot" and adding the letter "u" to words for no good reason. Our thoughts and prayers are with Homer in this difficult time.
You can follow Homer and mock his faux-gangsta profile pic @homerrabara2. There doesn’t seem to be a @homerrabara or @homerrabara1, so I don’t know how he came up with this gem of a username. You should ask him.
I’ve been working as a Content Specialist for PlayStation for 4 years now, so if you’ve been to our support site in that time, you’ve probably read some of my work… and you’ve probably left feedback telling me how terrible the article was. Thanks so much for that!
But mostly since leaving GameSpot I’ve focused on becoming really, really boring, and I think I’ve made a lot of progress. I got married, started investing, bought a drone but quickly returned it because we bought a house. Now I’m spending my weekends sanding cabinets. God, I’m so dull I almost fell asleep just writing that paragraph.
Oh, I did get to do a "Cop For A Day" experience a few years ago, and it was rad. I got to dust for prints, investigate an abandoned mattress, fire a gun and have lunch with the chief of police! I even convinced the officer I was with to handcuff me and put me in the back seat on the way to the gun range. They have little indentions in the plastic seats so your hands have somewhere to go, so it's really not that uncomfortable. It's reassuring to have that knowledge for the inevitable day when i get arrested for real.
You may have noticed that Shanker and I aren’t on Twitter. I actually made an account for Shanker a few years ago, but he was too lazy to do anything with it. I used to have an account, but I decided that I didn’t want to be one of those guys who gets fired because they say something stupid. I say a lot of stupid things, so I just went ahead and deleted it to be safe.
One thing all of us have in common is our fondness for the “good old days,” so who knows, maybe you’ll hear from us again sometime. Hopefully it’s not because we got caught robbing a bank or killed because we were trying to catch a bear for Shanker to fight.