Ethan Jarlewski and five co-workers whose names start with J are bureaucratically marooned in jPod. jPod is a no-escape architectural limbo on the fringes of a massive Vancouver game design company.
The six workers daily confront the forces that define our era: global piracy, boneheaded marketing staff, people smuggling, the rise of China, marijuana grow ops, Jeff Probst and the ashes of the 1990s financial tech dream. jPod's universe is amoral and shameless. The characters are products of their era even as they're creating it.
Everybody in Ethan's life inhabits a moral grey zone. Nobody is exempt, not even his seemingly straitlaced parents or Coupland himself, as readers will see. (From Vintage Canada)
From the book
I slunk into the BoardX meeting where Steve, Gord-O, and staff from the loftiest perches of the food chain were still trying to nail the essence of Jeff the Charismatic Turtle. Prototype turtle sketches were pinned onto a massive cork wall, all of them goofy and teensploitational: sunglasses, baggy pants and (dear God) a terry-cloth sweatband.
"Does Jeff the Turtle follow players around the entire time they manipulate their third person?"
"Almost. Like Watson is to Sherlock Holmes."
"Can you imagine how annoying that would be?"
"Maybe the buddy isn't such a good idea."
Steve squashed that hope. "It's going to be a buddy. Players will love it."
"It's really Poochie-Joins-Itchy-and-Scratchy."
"How am I ever going to look somebody who plays Tony Hawk games in the face again?"
"Isn't our turtle supposed to be a bit more studly?"
From jpod by Douglas Coupland ©2006. Published by Vintage Canada.