Journalist refuses to leave fintech conference
For probably the first time in the generic and platitude-drenched world of fintech, a journalist is refusing to leave a conference.
In the charming city of Amsterdam, at the end of the inaugural four-day show “If You’re API And You Know It, Keep It to Yourself for Once – 2017”; delegates, security and organisers were stunned to see the bedraggled figure of an impoverished journalist ensconced in the lighting rigging 20 metres above the stands.
There in the heavens, Earnest Evergreen, reporter at the UK-based fantasy/fintech hybrid publication Dungeons & Plugins, resolutely refused to come down: “Begone foul creatures! I like it here in this clean north European city where people don’t have an attitude problem and go the extra mile to be helpful. Unlike the UK, where everything is a drama and people go the extra mile to be bloody difficult. I am free of people saying ‘legend’ for almost everything – such as to describe a work colleague who works an extra five minutes. Free at last!
“I find great comfort in the conference scene, where I know I will hear ‘game changer’ every five minutes. I relish the predictability!
“Like watching the England football team or an Adam Sandler movie – I know I will witness a bad performance. But at least there will be solace in such sweet routine and rhythm. And the same is true of a fintech conference. I know what I will get.”
The audience were bemused and confused. The young reporter, cultivating that dragged-through-a-hedge-backwards-look like many of his ilk, had somehow obtained paradise amidst a large, dull and sterile hall.
They marvelled at his appearance and his movement in the lighting rigging. How could someone move so adroitly to evade capture in such an awful and cheap suit? Where did he buy it? Aldi or Primark? A sales person, unwisely it may be said, was also heard to make a joke about “low hanging fruit”.
Evergreen, ignoring the well-dressed and well-fed throng below, added: “Leave me alone you perfidious fools! I will live here for eternity. Free food and drink, a games area – where I can play pinball like some kind of teenager from the 1970s – but minus the flares and bad haircut. They also have a barber’s – regrettably manned by bearded hipsters. But I guess I can tolerate them, no matter how hard that may be.”
Clearly the unkempt wordsmith was not leaving. Security employed a net, tranquilliser darts and cans of lager as bait, but all to no avail. The use of peanuts to entice him down was a poor choice as this merely reminded Evergreen of his monthly salary.
Eventually, his editor arrived – an individual instantly recognisable by a surly demeanour and “killer look” reminiscent of a villain from a 1980’s action movie.
Stefan Silversmith, assassin impersonator and eternally annoyed soul, used subtle persuasion (and a megaphone) to resolve the situation: “Get down here now you idiot or you’ll be doing advertorials for the rest of your life.”
At last, and under fear of death, Evergreen sheepishly descended to the conference floor. The post-show show was over. The delegates, weighed down with free t-shirts, pens and notebooks, departed. They’d be at another fintech conference soon enough anyway.
Laura LaSalle, senior reporter at quirky and hyperlocal payments magazine Things to Do in Denver When You’re Paid, added: “Earnest does this at every conference. It’s because he lives in Streatham in south London. If you lived there, you’d want to stay here as well.”