This page is about as factual as it can be to the way Ian and I met. (Steve is loosely based on my BFF Ian, and Hawk is an almost completely real portrayal of myself). We were always the kids in the school who seemed nothing like anyone around us. I have probably mythologized my first encounter with Ian over the 19 years that we have been friends. But, this is how I remember it.
1996 was a time when a lot of our peers were starting to play Magic: The Gathering at Farmington Middle School. I remember Ian walking in with cards and game rules to game no one else was playing. It turns out that he was playing Dungeons & Dragons – a game I had no familiarity at the time with. I actually had to check with him about it before making this page because I couldn’t remember what he was playing. I remember clearly seeing that he was doing something different than everyone else. I remember he was alone doing it too. And that was the thing that I remember most.
He was different.
I was not a kid who fit in with everyone else. I still am not. I remember being obsessed with Pogs, but only because I loved the art. I couldn’t do the game play because I was petrified of losing my game pieces. Instead I collected about a thousand of them and would just get them out to look at. I tried Magic, but it was all about gameplay and I had no patience for the rules and the cards were considerably more expensive to collect than the 25 cent Pogs.
These things about me made me a bit of an outcast. Well, there are plenty more things that made me an outcast, but at this exact point history my aversion towards Magic gameplay kept me on the outs from social circles. Then along comes this other kid. The new kid, whom no one really knew, and he was doing something by himself and different than everyone. Now that is a recipe for at least a momentary friendship.
We had no idea at the time that this would be the start to an epic friendship that would last decades.
PS – Looking back I think the whole D&D thing had almost JUST gone out of fashion for it to be remotely popular with small town kids. I don’t remember ever interacting with it until I met Ian. But I know now how big a thing it was. But it wasn’t just D&D that made Ian cool. His dad was in a band. He read Robert Jordan & Tolkien and could talk hours about the mythology. He listened to music I had never heard of. He was basically the coolest person I had ever met.
Song of The Day:
“In the Garage” by Weezer
Check out the Hipster Picnic Soundtrack!