Yotsuba & New Interns


Journal Entry 1:

When I was first exchanging emails with Colette Bennett about interning at Japanator, I was excited. For two reasons was this so: number one was that I would get to help out and write from one of my favorite sites. Going from being a passive acceptor of content to a creator. The second reason was that any experience in the industry is good for my resume. 

So you can probably understand why I was thrilled with the chance to intern here. As such, I began a journal of my days here at Japanator. However, things didn't end up quite as I expected. I suppose the first sign of bad news was when Colette asked me to come to the Jtor headquarters.

At 2 AM in the morning.

Journal Entry 2:

I reluctantly approached the rundown line of apartments. Having braved a series of intense trials known as "dodge the crazy guy in 2B" and "avoid that one rabid cat" I had arrived at the townhouse on the end of the row. Apparently this was the location of the Jtor headquarters, but from the outside it looked to be more suitable for a drug deal than running a website. Perhaps it being 2 AM and the heaviness of my eyelids was a bigger influence on my judgment than I initially thought. 

With great trepidation I raised my hand to gently knock on the door, but before my knuckles brushed the metal the door had already swung open and two eyes peered out at me.

"So, did you bring the girl?" queried the doorway.

I responded in the only way I knew how, "Uh, um..."

"Oh, are you the new intern?" Suddenly a face was exposed into the flicker porch light. It was Colette. At least, I presumed it to be Colette. She smiled and waved me in, "Oh, come on in. I wanted you to meet everyone."

Slowly stepping into the townhouse, I followed her in, hesitantly shutting the door behind me out of fear and worry. She lead me through a dirty kitchen into the living room. Stopping only to remove some dust off of several plastic figures that rested on a shelf on the way, Colette pointed to a person sitting on the couch in front of the hazy blue glow of a 52 inch screen. "This is Brad," she said, then sat Indian-style on the floor in front of a laptop.

Now, I'm sure many of you have heard Brad's voice on the podcast. His voice is like a bass guitar crafted by God and delivered on unicorn farts to your cheap iPod earbuds via electronic signals that even Jesus envied for their brilliance. While this is all true, Brad's physical form is the most opposite manifestation of that possible while still remaining human. Sitting in front of the television was a prepubescent female child. I use this particular phrasing because Brad used such wording himself upon his introduction.

"I'm Brad Rice, a prepubescent girl, and I rule this small slice of the internet!"

Such a voice from such a body has never inspired such a terror. I'm not sure how the other editors can take it.

"Listen up, new guy! I'm the head tsundere around here, so shut your trap, open your Macbook or whatever other trendy hipster-wannabe piece of trash laptop you're attempting to use and begin writing! You'll be living here from now on, you can stay..."

Brad's small pause sent chills down my spine.

"...in the back room. Where Jon is staying. Share a room with him."

I opened my mouth, intending to says something sensible like, "Holy crap this is insane and I'll never stay here you crazy woman, I'm only an intern!" but before I could put my vocal cords to use Colette bounded up again and decided to speak for me: "Wow! That's awesome! Jon will be a great roomie. Why don't you take your stuff on back right now?"

"Well, uh, I only have my lapto--"

"We have extra clothes! Plus half the time you don't even need bodily coverings! We're all friends here, right? Right."

Colette forcibly pushed me out of the living room, up a flight of stairs, down a hall, and into a tiny room in the back. I asked her where Jon was. She said something about death, despair, and a grocery list, but as far as I could tell Jon's location was nowhere in her statement. She shut the door and a 'click' of the lock told me that I should stay put. I felt as though I had been kidnapped, but then I remembered I came here of my own free will and wondered how a courtroom battle against these nutcases would go, before falling asleep.

I woke up once during the night due to the cold. Apparently interns don't get blankets, so I plugged in my Macbook, opened up several tabs in Firefox as well as every program in CS4. It kept me warm for quite a bit until the overheating emergency switch forcibly powered the laptop down.

Journal Entry 3:

It's my third day here. Jon has still not shown up. I'm beginning to wonder if he ever will. My day generally consists of writing up articles for Brad. Once they found out I could draw something slightly more humanistic than a stick figure, I was also roped into creating odd little caricatures of the staff and tracing over some manga (and then posting it on the site as original work).

I also met some of the other staff members. When Colette isn't busy polishing her figure collection she's ordering us around. Dale North is an odd fellow. He seems to have the time of his life getting beaten up by Brad, and sometimes will mess up on purpose just to be punished. I've learned to stay out of the way whenever they get a little too into it. His job is to report on K-On!, which I found out the second day like this: "What does Dale do?" Colette answered, "Oh, he reports on K-On!" I was naive, "Oh, there must be a lot of K-On! news if there's one editor dedicated to it."

Colette stared at me for good ten seconds then went back to polishing her figurine.

Jake Thomas doesn't do any work at all as far as I can tell. He lives in the attic in a ridiculously plush bed and seems to have way more money than even Brad, so I'm not sure why he's still here. Most of the time all he wears is a crown, king's cape, and a pair of Lizzie McGuire boxers, and his gait is that of royalty. Where he gets his arrogance from I am entirely unsure. However, there appears to be some sort of running joke in which Brad calls him "Luca" which gets Jake absolutely infuriated. I haven't figured out why name "Luca" is funny, but once I do I'll be sure to write it down.

Karen is another intern who'd been working here longer than me, by about 4 months. I had hoped she'd be somewhat normal, but any conversation I try to have with her results in her muttering about "dying media" and hugging her doll that has huge hands.

I showed another editor, Tim, an article I'd been working on, in hopes he'd give my some critique. The only response he would give was "Uh, sorry, this sucks. Not now." I think this is his default response, putting up a front because he is afraid of his true feelings, or perhaps a way of dealing with stress. Then I realized that's a load of bull and he's probably crazy just like everyone else.

Journal Entry 4:

Today I decided to brave the murky waters of the living room and present Brad with a concept for a new weekly column. It would be about humor.

"This is supposed to be funny?"

"Well, yes. It's about how the anime industry is collaps--" I was interrupted.

"No one cares, Bill," Brad said. I began to retort, "Actually, my name is--"

"NO ONE CARES WHAT YOUR NAME IS," Brad whirled around in the sofa, his face contorting into such a disturbing expression that even I wondered what muscles existed that could create such a look. "Now, get back to work doing something productive. Post some boobs or lolis or something. That's it! Make a new weekly column about boobs. Call it Terrific Titties or something to piss Tim off."

"Uh, okay..." I said, unsure of how else to respond. The prepubescent girl turned back around to the oversized screen and began to play Blazblue.

Not prepared to give up quite so easily, I walked down the hall, carefully avoiding the fresh droppings from god knows who, to see Colette in her "office." As I stepped in she abruptly stopped petting the Miku figure and shoved it back onto her desk. "What is it?" She asked through a fake smile.

"Could you look at my idea for a new weekly column?" I held out the sheets of paper.

"Oh, um, sorry hun. It's just, I'm busy working on a big story for the other site. You know, Tomopop?" You mean the one that I'm pretty sure is just a cover so you can get free toys? Yeah, I know that one. It's blue. I nodded to whatever she was saying and walked out. Perhaps if Jon were here he'd be normal enough to at least give feedback, I dreamed.

Reality set back in as Jake wandered in front of me and held a mic against my nose. "Hey, want to do a podcast? It'll be awesome! We'll talk about anime!" I almost said yes, then remembered that nothing good could come of that. "No thanks, maybe some other time, Luca."

I blacked out after that.

Journal Entry 5:

I must hurry and finish writing as my journal is already getting long-winded. It's hard to see my screen when my right eye is so swollen. I tried to quit today, but Brad began laughing then stood on my back while forcing me to draw some "delicious flat chest" for his collection. My cell phone had just enough juice to make a 911 call, but when I told them the address, the operator nervously replied, "Oh... oh, that place. Oh." It took a while before anyone from the police showed up, and when they did not much comfort came with them.

The knock on the door. Brad answers, "Oh hey James. What's up?"

Brad's on a first-name basis with the police?!

"We got a call again, Brad. Now, you got some of the goods, or do we need to search the place?" The officer leaned against the doorway like a casual friend. Brad sighed heavily and said, "Oh, fine. It's some of my best stuff, but I guess it's all I got right now." He walked away from the door only to return moments later with several volumes of manga. I couldn't read the titles because Brad had stolen my glasses earlier that week for something I'd rather not ask about. With the stack of probably-lolicon-manga in hand, the officer smiled, waved, and left. Brad, apparently relieved, went back to playing Blazblue again, screaming at the television like it was talking back.

Sometimes I wonder if I ever will escape this place.

And I never did see that Jon Snyder guy.

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Ben Huber
Ben HuberContributor   gamer profile

I'm the managing editor of Japanator by day, and a roving freelance graphic designer by night! /  more + disclosures



Filed under... #Japanator Original #top stories #yotsubato #ZOMGWTFBBQ



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