The transition from summer to fall can mean a lot of things to a lot of different people. For some of us it’s the end of the riding season, for others its the beginning of sports (do love me some college ball) and for most of us it means the start of a whole bunch of new sitcoms.
There’s one show coming to CBS this year that, and I’m not making this up, tells the story of an outdoor magazine journalist discovering print is dead when he’s tasked with working on the web version.
Now I know what you’re thinking here- This sounds an awful lot like CG’s autobiography and you’d be right. In fact I’m pretty offended that I wasn’t brought on as one of the show’s consultants. At the very least, aside from providing key accuracy pointers, I could have been instrumental in making sure this outdoor journalist’s rants were realistic.
The show, called the Great Indoors, follows an older guy forced to work with a bunch of millenials writing about outdoors and adventure, who have never themselves been on an outdoor adventure. That’s where any similarities to what we do here at MBT end- sure we’ve had to embrace the reality that print is becoming an obsolete concept and that to get their outdoor fix, readers now look to the web rather than the library, our contributors are no posers.
Quite the opposite in fact; the crew of MBT’s biggest problem is usually that there aren’t enough hours in the day to put in the riding, do the testing then write it all down. Once we get out there and start doing the riding, everything else becomes secondary. Oftentimes that list includes things like eating and sleeping.
Getting back to the show, though- one of the most noteworthy aspects I noticed was the set for the office- an open floor plan (with requisite receptionist lobby directly out of the elevator) that is littered with outdoorsy props: kayaks, tents, cots, lanterns etc. among the tablets, iMacs and desktops. I can tell you with certainty that MBT’s lavish offices contain no such swag, unfortunately.
I could definitely get behind the idea of helmets, jerseys and the latest bike offerings hanging from the walls and suspended from the ceilings around here to provide inspiration while we labor over the keys. Then again, that may be too inspiring. As in we’d be inspired to pull down a bike, strap on a helmet and leave our desks for the real great outdoors. Daily.
The advanced screening I saw of the Great Indoors did make me giggle on occasion though. I think some of its more natural moments are the ones that call out the nature of publishing in general. How article ideas and assignments can start out with good intentions and end up becoming pieces of shit. Again, why didn’t the producers call me for insight on this process alone?
The Great Indoors will be coming to a small screen near you on October 27th and I would recommend watching it but only if there’s nothing better going on. And by better I of course mean anything that puts you in the real great outdoors. You can always read archives of my column if it’s hilarious commentary on such things you’re after.
Jason bought a drone to film the sport from above only to end up not filming the sport from above and then having to buy a second drone. Somehow he isn’t bitter.
In MBT’s downtime, Ryan moved from Texas to Washington. Somewhere along the way, he found his inner-philosopher.
Ryan sits down with Skibowl Bike Learning Center’s Scott Connors to rap on the future of Mt. Hood Downhill and what makes Oregon such a hot riding destination in general.