Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Serfin' safari

The wonderful Lisa Schmeiser reminds me that Doug Coupland's sequel to "Microserfs," "JPod," is due out in May, and it has a Web site. (Apparently the name is not a product, like iPod, but refers to a pod of offices/cubes where everyone's last name starts with "J".)

You don't know how happy this makes me. I loved "Microserfs," and I'd be lying if I said there wasn't a tiny bit of me that wonders if loving the book so much didn't kind of help push me out to Seattle, where I go to work every day on the Microsoft main campus. As I walk around the halls and see barefoot programmers wearing shirts that say things like "There are 10 types of people in this world, those that understand binary and those that don't," I often think of the book. One of my favorite scenes is where the characters go to Costco (a Seattle-based company, by the way) and buy flat foods to shove them under the door of a programmer who won't come out. There's another great scene where someone refuses to take the Microsoft-groomed paths into the landscape, convinced that Bill Gates will look out the window and see him stubbornly making his own way and think "that's my kind of employee!"

Apparently jPod isn't a direct sequel, which is actually OK with me, the more I think about it. I loved Daniel, Karla, Bug and the other characters, but I wonder if they'd be as much fun 10 years later. A new group of young Turks could be fun to get to know. You can get little bio sketches of six of them on the site, including their favorite Simpsons characters and preferred office temperatures, which makes me incredibly hopeful about the new book's tone.

But what's this? A "Microserfs" cover I've never seen? In 10 years of being involved with Microsoft, I have yet to see a 'Softie wear a tie.


Anonymous said...

Oh, Gael!! You are like Santa Claus ... I had no idea this was coming out. I love "Microserfs," and know very well the scenes you mention ... I re-read all my Coupland every now and again. Reminds me of the Summer of Coupland, during college, when I was interning (unpaid) in NYC, going to the library all the time, riding the LIRR out to my boyfriend's parents' house every Friday night with the commuters, and back into the city on Sunday night ... good times.

emc said...

I was checking out the site just last week, and I am so excited about this book. I think you're right, I'm kind of glad he created a new group of characters.

I saw Coupland perform his one-man show 'September 10', oddly enough on September 11, a couple of years ago here in Calgary, and I can say he definitely hasn't lost his touch.

Anonymous said...

Isn't the lego man on the more common Microserfs cover also wearing a tie?