Behind the Hunt: The Adventures of Dr. Blined

watson-adventures-dr-blined-thumbHe might be our easiest clue to find: Tall, dapper Dr. Robin M. Blined, with a snappy hat and a monocle, stands out among the crowds at the Museum of American History in Washington, D.C. He’s a suspect on our murder mystery hunts in a variety of science and history museums, and your job is to interrogate him.

In D.C. the duplicitous doc is played by Bobby Williams, who came up with his own costume. He and Sharlette Williams make up TeamSllae, two of the many creative, enthusiastic people who make Watson Adventures scavenger hunts so entertaining. They play many roles and wear many hats—quite literally, in Bobby’s case. His outfit and height draw a lot of attention from people who aren’t on the hunt, as he reveals in this account of a typical day at the office (so to speak)…

My character’s story is that he is hiding in plain sight, for fear of suffering the same fate as his departed colleagues. The hunters must look for me holding a clipboard near the John Bull locomotive. As you can see from the photo below, my attire is not unlike a conductor or some other official who may have knowledge of the train’s history. Helps me blend into the museum environment. It is a recipe for great interactions with all museum patrons, not just the hunters.


One recent hunt was especially rich with such moments. Tons of kids stopped to ask about the train (or just talk to the tall man in the funny hat). One group of eight kids begged their guardians for a chance to come speak to me. This posse of tiny humans craned their necks upward, asked all sorts of questions about the train, and were amazed to know that it remains functional even today. They were dazzled by my pocket watch and shocked to learn that cell phones did not exist in 1831.

A very young boy stopped his parents in order to regale me with a tale of a train he saw on television, which was melted in a massive pool of lava. This story took approximately nine minutes. His parents apologized profusely, but I insisted it was no problem at all. I also encouraged the boy tell that riveting story to all who would listen.

I got a lot of requests to pose for photos. One lady demanded that I hold up my monocle…you know…for authenticity.

One young man told me that I was too tall for his world and expressed his desire to live in a world where short people are not forced to abide in the shadows of the tall. I told him we should all live together in harmony. His reply: “I don’t care.  You are too tall.”

Usually, the funniest stories are born from my interactions with the hunters.  On that day, it has been everyone else stealing the show.