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Lincøln
Level 8: 5802 points
Alltime Score: 20858 points
Last Logged In: March 6th, 2017
BADGE: Senator BADGE: INTERREX BADGE: Journey To The End Of The Night Organizer TEAM: Societal Laboratorium TEAM: The Disorganised Guerilla War On Boredom and Normality TEAM: El Lay Zero TEAM: Group Creation Public Badge TEAM: Team Shplank TEAM: The Ezra Buckley Foundation TEAM: SFØ Société Photographique TEAM: SCIENCE! TEAM: SFØ Podcast TEAM: The Ultimate Collaboration Team TEAM: Synaesthetics TEAM: LØVE TEAM: Level Zerø TEAM: Public Library Zero TEAM: SF0 Skypeness! TEAM: INFØ TEAM: AustinZero TEAM: BRCØ TEAM: The Sutro Tower Health and Safety Task Force Justice TEAM: Whimsy TEAM: The Cold War Reenactment Society TEAM: Robots Are Taking Over! TEAM: Team MØXIE! TEAM: Bike TEAM: The Bureau of Introductory Affairs TEAM: SSF0R (Sphores) TEAM: SFØ Academy BART Psychogeographical Association Rank 8: Psychogeographer EquivalenZ Rank 3: Protocologist The University of Aesthematics Rank 7: Professor Humanitarian Crisis Rank 1: Peacekeeper Biome Rank 3: Field Researcher Chrononautic Exxon Rank 2: Futurist Society For Nihilistic Intent And Disruptive Efforts Rank 6: Deconstroyer
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Journey to the End of the Night Los Angeles by Lincøln

July 23rd, 2008 6:15 PM / Location: 34.108890,-118.3076

INSTRUCTIONS: Prepare for Adventure!

The city spreads out before you. Rushing from point to point, lit by the slow strobe of fluorescent buses and dark streets. Stumbling into situations for a stranger's signature. Fleeing unknown pursuers, breathing hard, admiring the landscape and the multitude of worlds hidden in it.

For one night, drop your relations, your work and leisure activities, and all your usual motives for movement and action, and let yourself be drawn by the attractions of the chase and the encounters you find there.


A thrilling pursuit through the heart of Hollywoodland. No skates, no bikes, no cars; just your own two feet and public transportation. Bring some water, possibly a camera, and comfortable shoes (or maybe no shoes) - leave everything else at home.

If you're participating in the El Lay Journey, in any way, be it as Chaser, Runner, or Check Point Volunteer please tell us your story.

Yes, please, take lots of pictures, or draw some, if you have no camera. Tell us your tale of adventure, be as detailed as you can.

Tell us your impressions of the route, the people you meet, and your perceptions of the city.

This here proof will chronicle my own personal journey to bring Journey to the End of the Night to Los Angeles.
la28582.jpg

Journey L.A. started when I read that Dax was doing one in Chicago. I thought, "well, if Dax can do one, surely I can as well."
Actually that's not quite true. Journey L.A. really started for me within the first week I joined SFØ. I went to the home page and instead of a picture of Lank, Captain Barbacopca and myself, (or Beth and her camera at a BART station, or an armed mailman in camo, or a cop's ass on a segway, or or or or...) I saw this picture here:Robertish's spark that made me wanna play.
Which a player called Robertish drew. Yes he drew a part of his adventure comic book style. It was one of the first things I ever saw on SFØ and I fell in love.
From that moment I knew I wanted to do a Journey L.A. Well, I imagined a Journey L.A. but I wouldn't say I was sure I wanted to be behind it. At that time I didn't know how the site worked. I thought all of the tasks and events were generated by some mysterious people who ran the game. The powers that be. But when I realized that we create this game collectively, and that anybody could create events, that was when I started to really think I could create a Journey L.A. But probably sometime in the future. Someday.
And it was Dax that lit the fire under my ass. It was Dax announcing his Journey (complete with cool website), that made me get to work on a Journey for L.A. I needed to figure out first where the race would be run, as there are many good choices in L.A. for routes. After discussing it with a few people I finally settled on Hollywood. Once I settled on Hollywood, I needed a route. I knew a few things to start. I knew I wanted to hit big cool touristy spots. I also knew I wanted to finish at my theater, so we'd have a space to have a party and room to relax after the chase was over. I also knew I wanted to start in Griffith park. Because that way, no matter how many people showed up, I could get them all together in one place fairly easily. Knowing those few things, the route was easy to figure as soon as I looked at a map. And the route that came to me was this. That was exactly as I drew it the first day I thought it up. Even the bonus checkpoints. I scrutinized it and sent it to C.M. for him to scrutinize and find faults and we couldn't.
So we had our route.
Now we needed a date.
I knew I wanted to do it in the summer.
And the only calendar I looked at was my theater's performance schedule calendar. I noted that we had a show closing in late June, and a one weekend only show on July 4th and then another one weekend show on July 19th. And July 12th was open with nothing going on. I set that date. I went to the administration of the company and requested that date. It was approved and so I announced the date to SFØland.
I made up fliers and started emailing friends and posting on websites and generally spreading the word. But I hadn't gotten very far in the spreading when I learned that my theater moved the dates of the shows around, and were having their big awards show celebration party on the 12th. That show always always runs late and well past midnight. This would not do. So I went back to the drawing board. I either needed to change the date or the endpoint of the race (and as a result possibly the route of the race). I agonized over this decision for quite awhile. I discussed my options with a few friends and decided because I'd already advertised it on the 12th, that we couldn't change the date (which was especially full of suck for me as it meant I couldn't go to my awards show). But now I had to find a new place to end the race. I wanted someplace indoors where we could hang out and have a good relaxing time to unwind after the ordeal. And after a few more weeks of scouting and calling friends trying to find a place that was relatively close, I was no closer. So I decided to have it end as I planned it, and possibly end in the parking lot of the theater if worse came to worse. It was a few weeks before the event when I was at my theater and remembered the medical marijuana store next door to my theater often had parties in their big space some nights. So I went over there and asked the owner if I could throw a party in his place. After about an hour of sweet talking and explaining our game, he agreed.

That was a relief. But the down side was in all of the time that passed where I didn't have a location down, I did very little work on promoting the event. I did very little work at all except trying to nail down a location. So the promotion was a bit of a failure. But we got 20 people there. And since before this event there were two real active players and four new players, that was a pretty good turnout.
So once I had my endpoint, I went about promoting, I passed out flyers (again) and fastidiously posted on those cool "what's happening in L.A." blogs. But I didn't do too much follow up on any of those fronts, as I had to make all of the tools of the game. I had to design the manifests (I stole my design concept and ideas from the CGØ Journey Praxis of Dax's designs) I made trophies for the winning runner and winning chaser (again my idea was stolen from Dax), I made the stamps for the bonus checkpoints (another awesome idea taken straight from the mind of Dax) and I had to aquire red and blue material and rip them into ribbons for arm tying. The trophies took the longest as I made my trophies out of tape.
Runner trophyRunnerChaser trophyChaser

So then came the day of the race. That morning I made the mechanism to attach the stamps to their locations at the two unmanned stations. I gathered up all of my props and headed out. I called Loki on my way out to see where he was and what he was up to. When I called he informed me that he was in the Hollywood Forever Cemetery. I didn't know it at the time, but he had just finished not jaywalking. So I picked up the Loki and we went off to Astro Burger to install the first stamp. We wandered around the establishment looking for the perfect place to put it when Loki came up with the idea of putting inside a free newspaper stand. Genius.
The first unmanned checkpointThe stamp inside the newspaer stand.
Then the two of us went to the White Horse to find the bouncer there and I gave him a sharpie and instructions to sign any piece of paper from anybody mentioning Journey to the End of the Night. That accomplished, we went to the starting point where Captain Barbapoca was waiting. I gave him the red and blue ribbons and had him make them pretty and in neat rolls while Loki and I went up to the Griffith Observatory to plant the second unmanned stamp. It was quite a hike to get there, get around all of the people and find a spot that would go un-noticed for the night, but we managed to find just such a spot.
Again, the checkpointThe second unmanned checkpoint
Getting up to this location was difficult and treacherous during the day, I can't imagine what it was like at night while trying to move fast trying to win a race.



Then all that was left to do was go to the starting point and wait. And help make the rolls of ribbon. So Loki, the Captain and I rolled up fabric into little balls in a park on a nice Saturday afternoon.

The first player to show up was LeftHandedSnail. We were sitting hidden ninja-like in the shadows of a tree so were made invisible from the outside, so we saw her before she saw us. I had to go get something out of Piper, so on my way to do that errand I bekoned her over to our table and she helped roll up her own blue and red ribbons, both of which would be used that night. When I'm sure I know that everything is being handled, I call and check in with all of my checkpoint agents. Lowteck is supposed to man checkpoint one and is running late being stuck in West Covina and unfamiliar with traffic in Los Angeles, he's manning the checkpoint with Mark II Robot so I'm not too worried as there are safeguards in case somebody didn't make it. But I have no way of contacting MKII that day, I just have his word that he'll be there. But I get calls from all other checkpoint agents and all is going according to plan.
Runners planningimg_6555.jpgimg_6560.jpgimg_6561.jpg
By 7:30 just about all of the runners are present and have manifests and ribbons, but I'm stalling waiting for Lowteck to get to his checkpoint. Because I'm just not sure if MKII is there yet. But I do get word that Lowteck is circling for parking. I figure he'll beat the runners, so I gather my runners together and go over the rules and offer up answers to any questions. I mention that there are three bonus checkpoints, and say that I will give any player who gets all three bonus checkpoints and arrives at the finish line with a full manifest I will give that player anything they want. I say this because there is a bonus checkpoint on the front of the Griffith Observatory. This is a very difficult place to get to much less find in the dark while running. I added the Griffith Observatory checkpoint as a joke really. I never imagined anybody would attempt to retrieve it. At about 7:45 I release the runners off into the night. And four players run away from checkpoint one. They run into the darkening park behind us. I offered to give anybody clues if they wanted to attempt the impossible checkpoint. Tac Haberdash asked me for the clue (the clue was the pictures I took of the location I intended to use just for this praxis). Then he ran off to join his friends who had fled into the dark park. For reference the three other runners were Waldo Cheerio, Black Coyote, and the Rev. Odyssius Thwakinbusch.

The runners were off. My job was done. I decided to go check on the checkpoints. I went to checkpoint one first. And there just as I had hoped were Lowteck and MKII Robot. Lowteck had music playing and MKII was dancing. I wasn't aware robots could dance. I was only at the checkpoint for a short period of time and left before any runners got there, but I did notice many many people liked MKII. People in cars were honking their horns and waving at him. He's a real celebrity, and cooler than I would have thought.

I left checkpoint one for checkpoint three. Captain Barbapoca was at checkpoint two and I knew he could fend for himself in the sea of Jack Sparrows at the Chinese theater, so I went to the third checkpoint to check up on that group, and there was a friend of mine from high school dressed as a zombie in front of the Hollywood Forever cemetery. He had a beach chair, and friends, and a case of beer, and seemed to be doing just fine.

So I left him and went to checkpoint four, which is in an awesome park that most people don't know is there. River was manning that checkpoint with my brother. It's a beautiful park with an amazing view, so I stayed up there for most of the rest of the night. It had good cell reception, so I could keep tabs on all of the agents and chasers from there. I stayed up there until the first runners arrived. The first two were unlikely. They were Nazzo Tinerlen in a red hat and Peter Garnett in a white coat. Once they arrived, I figured it was time to move on to the next checkpoint.

I found Loki and Nancy sitting out on a patio with some chasers that were strategizing. I stayed just long enough to make sure that everything was cool, and then headed off to the finish line to make sure that was all set up and ready.

And when I got there it was. Lowteck and Barbapoca were there already, and next door to the party was my theater where a huge event show was happening. I went in there to see how that was going, and for the rest of the night I popped in from one space to the next. It was a few hours before we got word that runners might be on their way. By this time, the block was surrounded by chasers who staked out corners on every surrounding block, they guarded every street and approach diligently. My brother predicted that nobody would finish the race. How could anybody get through this kind of security? They had every approach covered. They did. What they didn't have though, was a way to catch Tac Haberdash. I was standing on the corner down the street from the finish line when I saw Tac strolling down the street with a blue knit cap on like he hadn't a care in the world. When a chaser saw him and his blue armband, he started to cross Melrose to get him, when Tac saw this, he waved and began to approach with a smile on his face. When he was about six feet away, he double juked the poor chaser like Barry Sanders, left then right, then left again, and when the chaser's knees buckled, Tac sprinted for the sidewalk (the safe zone), when he got there he asked if he was safe, the chaser yelled out "No!" as he lunged at him, and I swear the chaser got to within a foot, maybe closer, and Tac threw the jacket he had been carrying in his hands into the chaser's hands, and while he was occupied, he bolted out into the middle of Melrose again, and he ran faster than anybody should be able to run, he ran like the wind. He ran a huge loop and the chaser ran the short distance to try to cut him off, all the while shouting for his fellow chasers to come and help. To no avail. Tac was swifter of foot than all of the chasers combined. Seeing that one moment of action made me want to run the race. It was truly amazing. And exhilarating. It was so amazing that my words, I fear don't begin to describe what happened, so I made a map with a step by step of what happened and gif'd it up for you to enjoy.

Here, enjoy:
tac-ftw61828.gif

Ironically, all of the shouting that was going on to try and catch Tac, left the back side, the alley vulnerable, which allowed The Walrus to sneak in and finish the race second.

And there they are, the first two across the finish line:
WinnerSecond
Now I would like to point out an amazing fact. I knew when those four guys went up the hill the wrong way to try to get the bonus checkpoint, I had a feeling that they might succeed, but I never ever would have thought that anybody who went up there would then finish the race. It would take too much time out of their Journey. But here's the amazing fact, one player managed to get all three bonus checkpoints, and six regular checkpoints, this is an amazing feat. But wait, it gets even better, that player who did that was Tac Haberdash. He not only did all of that, and was the only player to have done it, but he also finished first. That is truly rocktastic.

Also, Lord Bojangles Winston-Jones was the best chaser with five kills. He was on a bike and the bike was far more effective here than it was in Chicagø.
And here are the winning chaser and runner:
Winning chaserWinning runner.

After everybody made it back (and I forgot how many people finished the race, it was around six or seven I think) we all relaxed and told stories of daring escapes and cunning schemes. A good time was had by all and next door a friend of mine proposed marriage in an awesome way. I also won an award in the award show next door.

At about two or three, the players began to get real tired and I began shuttling people back to their cars four at a time back up to Griffith Park. When everybody was home, I stayed around the theater and hung out with my theater friends. Until about 4:00 when I was tired and decided to take Captain Barbapoca home. But as soon as we got into Piper we realized that the unmanned stamps were still out there in the night, so we went to clean up our mess. The Astro Burger one was easy, but the Griffith Observatory one was not. The park is closed at night, so we had to park outside of the park and walk in. We had to hike up to the observatory in the dark while exhausted. But we did it.
The clue at night.
And while we were up there in the best vantage point of Los Angeles, the best city in the world, we decided to take some photos. Well, the Captain took photos of the city at night, and I took photos of him taking photos.
The Captain captures the night.
Then we left, this time not as diligent at hiding from the park rangers. A few rangers passed us and said nothing, and we couldn't figure out why, but as the sun began to lighten, we figured it out. It was because it was dawn and the park was opening again. It was a long night. And we journeyed to the very end of it. I took the Captain home and then dragged myself back home. I took this photo just before going to sleep. See how morning it is behind me?
The end of the night

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26 vote(s)


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6 comment(s)

(no subject)
posted by Peter Garnett on July 23rd, 2008 6:45 PM

Vote for making it work.

(no subject)
posted by Lincøln on July 25th, 2008 9:51 AM

Planning for next summer's has begun and there are some pretty cool things going into it. It will follow the regular format of a normal Journey but there will be many surprises and unexpected adventures along the way.
I want it to be next summer now.

(no subject)
posted by Dax Tran-Caffee on July 25th, 2008 12:55 PM

Hey, will you look at that? It's next summer already.

(no subject)
posted by lefthandedsnail on July 25th, 2008 4:54 PM

Yay Decemberists!

(no subject)
posted by Lord Bojangles Winston-Jones on July 26th, 2008 7:04 PM

An absolutely wonderful night, thank you Lincoln. I eagerly anticipate next year's journey, and I hope more victi- i mean players can join up for the fun.

(no subject)
posted by Tac Haberdash on August 10th, 2008 1:07 AM

This vote is for the gif ONLY. I haven't even read your praxis yet, and it's not getting a vote from me.