To the metal

I just flew in from E3, and boy are my legs tired. Yeah, legs. What, did you think this was a joke? No. The first thing I did upon getting home, you see, was spend an hour on the exercise bike. That exercise regimen I started up a month ago? I’ve actually managed to stick with it every single day for, by my count, 26 days. I’d be at a full month now if E3 hadn’t taken me away for three days and plopped me in a hotel more concerned with looking rustic and Moroccan than in offering guest amenities like an exercise room. And no way was I jogging in L.A. — if the humidity and pollution didn’t kill me, the aggressive, wild-eyed homeless guy who stinks of human feces would have instead.

Anyway, it’s good to be back in the routine. Honestly, my legs feel better tonight for having exercised. I spent my entire time at the LACC feeling stiff and slightly achy for not stretching them enough. Working out has become the one thing I totally look forward to every evening; I’ve moved my way up from that painful first day and my desperately agonizing twelve-minute/four-mile workout to 50-55 minutes and 18 or 19 miles every time. And where at first I struggled to deal with 3/8 resistance, now I spend most of my time at 3/8 or 4/8 and jump up to max resistance for short sprints. I don’t have a scale, so I can’t weigh myself, but I’m about to have to take in my belt another notch (the second since I bought this belt in February), so it must be having some effect. And I’m in a consistently better mood, too, with far less time spent in the doldrums.

Why didn’t you people tell me exercise was so good for me sooner? Jerks.

Anyway, you don’t really deserve it after letting me down like that, but we’ve recorded one of the best episodes of Retronauts ever. It’s not the usual crew or the usual format, but I think that’s part of what makes it so good — it was something different, and we had to keep it quick and punchy to make room for 1UP Yours. I had been considering closing down the podcast, since the existing format has really run its course… but now I think I want to use this episode as a springboard to revitalize it. We shall see!

23 thoughts on “To the metal

  1. I take full responsibility for not telling you to improve your life sooner. Damn me all to hell. ;) Also, it was indeed a good episode. The MM3 music helped a lot. ^^

  2. I was in a really crappy mood today until I decided to hunker down and force my way through my daily Wii Fit regimen. Then I felt awesome.

  3. I’m reminded of that old show, The Pretender, where instant expert Jared would dress up as a different expert every week and make people’s lives better by subjecting the overbearing evil boss to an ironic punishment. Every formula gets old no matter how awesome the formula started out as, which is why Fawlty Towers is still so good.

    Okay, wait, bad example.

    I mean that formulas are a crutch to get out of making something properly compelling.

  4. I’ve built up a pretty good tolerance for running around Lake Merritt, except sometimes my shins threaten to rebel.

  5. I grew up in south Louisiana where, in the summer, it’s usually 90 – 100 degrees outside with HIGH humidity all damn day long. There is no respite, even at night. God forbid it rains and the humidity rises to 95%+. You walk out of the house and within 30 seconds you are sticky and sweaty. So whenever I hear someone complain about the heat or humidty in Los Angeles, I just laugh and laugh. ;P

    Much appreciation for the Mega Man 3 music in the podcast. Shadow Man’s music = the bestest.

  6. Oh, man, I love Brandon Sheffield. He’s such a brilliant writer. Fuck all y’all Pitchfork haters.

  7. I agree with the Brandon Comments.

    I hope the old format has at least a few revivals, I still enjoy the theme topics every now and then.

  8. Good Retronauts! I was very amused by tales of Nintendo’s prickishness! What? You want Warioland Shake? How about Wii Music instead? Why play a sidescroller when you could be playing AIR SAXOPHONE? That’s a GREAT use of the wiimote and nunchuk! Video of the demonstration is truly cringe-inducing. I mean, the drums would almost make sense, if Rock Band didn’t exist… I’m confused.

  9. Halfway through the podcast, and I’m really liking it. I don’t know who half the people are, but that’s easily corrected by visiting their sites.

    As for the belt thing, watch out. I recently had to spend the equivalent of $100 taking several suits and trousers to the tailor. It’s special seeing an old “35” tag on a trouser that is now closer to “30,” but my wallet didn’t appreciate it.

  10. I’m a big fan of Kevin’s podcast and it was really cool to hear him on Retronauts. Brandon was a cool edition to the show as well.

  11. Maybe in the future exercise video games can get the player to burn calories without knowing it? I keep hoping the next Wii Zelda is going to require the balance board for the whole game the way Phantom Hourglass is based on the stylus.

  12. I hope you’ve convinced yourself not to close down Retronauts. Us gamers have short attention spans, and constantly crave innovation, it is true, but your show is the equivalent of sports talk for me. Commentators have managed to discuss baseball for 100 years, and that only requires, like, four buttons to play. You say the format is stale, but it seems like there are tons of subjects yet to be discussed, and tons more that could be fleshed out by guest commentators (the computer rpg podcast, for example, was pretty weak — the radness that is Wizardry 7 is completely glossed over).

    So yeah, keep ’em coming. Your lo-fi rants totally ease the tedium of my office job. Hell, you could even start pulling random fanboys off the streets of SF to plug the holes — we’re not too crazy.

  13. I’m usually not one for podcasts that aren’t repeats of This American Life, but Best Retronauts EVAH!

  14. The Hotel Figueroa wept joyous tears of liquid concrete when it learned E3 would be returning to the LA Convention Center. The Hotel Figueroa thought of wrapping you in its starchy sheets for that long, lonely year. The Hotel Figueroa miiiiissed yooooou.

  15. Retronauts has run its course?… what? It’s about old games, and there are plenty of old games and systems left to talk about. And don’t tell me you’re running out of ideas, because people post ideas for shows all the time in the Retronauts blog. The fans are doing the work for you!

  16. Gillenium: ‘Nuff said. I’ve been listening back through the classic episodes of Retronauts and most of them are good. Scratch that, all of them are good. There are still piles of topics you could cover. Retronauts has no where near run its course yet! Only improvement need be made: more Bettenhausen.

  17. Perhaps it’s fitting for a Retronaut fan to love the earlier episodes based on nostalgia, but I really think the Parish/Sharkey/Kohler team worked. Besides, it only takes one episode for me to miss Sharkey’s snarky comments.

    Of course, all the other guests have been terrific as well, (example: It’s always a bonus to have Shane’s hyperkinetic enthusiasm on the show). But, really: Retronauts is awesome in any form, and quite necessary when concerning modern gaming.

    And it honestly garners a pretty kick-ass mix of passion, knowledge and humor that I’ve never witnessed in a podcast.

    I suppose this wouldn’t be a good time to mention missing Bonus Stage, but… kinda do.

  18. The appeal of retronauts for me has always been the humor. I think this peaked sometime last spring/summer. Yes, I know Sharkey had taken over for a bit, but I loved the non-format, anything goes banter. I still love retronauts and always will, so keep up the good work my friend.

  19. If you simply don’t feel like hosting a podcast anymore (you complain an awful lot about it!), do the decent thing and let Sharkey take over.

    And the latest episode didn’t have Sharkey, Kohler OR Ray, so you’re not allowed to call it one of the best episodes ever..

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