I entered the gymnasium with confidence, trying to appear as if I belonged there. The hustle and bustle of Bucks Media Day was the perfect cover for my devious plot.
“Excuse me, Mr. Ilyasova, could I speak to you a moment?” I asked, grabbing Ersan’s arm. “It will really only take a second.”
Ersan glanced at the camera around my neck, then down at my nametag, which identified me as a reporter for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. False credentials, to be sure, but I planned to make a quick getaway after I finished this one little project. Recognizing that I was an important member of the local media, he nodded.
“All I need is a picture for a story,” I explained. “We’ve already got enough sound bytes from your interview with Paschke.”
“Sounds cool,” Ersan responded without interest.
“Why don’t you stand here?” I asked, pointing an an empty spot of wall isolated from the rest of the media who were present at the event. Ersan wordlessly went and stood against the wall, waiting for me to take the picture.
“Oh yeah, one more thing,” I said, acting as if I had forgotten something. In reality, this was the one detail I had not been able to banish from my mind for the past several months. “I need you to put these on,” I continued, pulling out a pair of sunglasses from my pocket and handing them to the tall Turk.
“Why do I need these?” Ersan inquired, looking at them with an amused expression.
“It’s part of our angle,” I responded, hoping the tiny bit of journalism jargon would persuade him. It did.
“Okay,” Ersan agreed, putting the glasses on his face.
“Excellent!” I said happily, getting my camera ready for the shot. “Just hold still, I’ll snap a few, and you can get on with your day.” I quickly took the pictures, checked the results on the camera’s viewfinder, then, satisfied with the outcome, excused Ersan with an enthusiastic “Thanks!”
The deed done, I walked calmly but purposefully towards the door where I had entered. A few people gave me funny looks, likely thinking I was an intern or something, but I successfully got back to my car without anybody interrogating me.
With these new pictures, my new YouTube channel was now ready to be unveiled.