Life without video games _______________________________.
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Mike’s eyes became wide as a full moon, and a chill ran down his spine. There was a massive bear squatting in his living room! Every time the bear moved an inch, priceless porcelain fell out of the cabinet and shattered into tiny pieces. The bear cared not. And Mike cared not how his mother would react to the porcelain shower on the floor.
Mike was more worried about the bear. The saying that hell hath no fury like a woman’s scorn, Mike could now confirm, was patently false. Hell hath no fury, Mike thought, like a ravenous bear’s sharp teeth.
The hungry bear clawed at the couch Mike sat on and, in one swift stroke, sliced it in half. The bear bit into a pillow and shook it until the living room was blanketed by fluff. Then the bear moved in for the kill. Mike was the next target.
“Huh? No, stop! Ahhhh!”
Mike thrashed violently on the couch and covered his eyes. He opened them a moment later to notice the couch was once again whole. He took a deep breath and let out a tentative sigh. He was shocked.
“You were playing that hunting video game again, weren’t you?” said Sophia.
“No, I swear a bear was on a rampage in here. I swear. Please believe me.”
Mike seemed to have conveniently ignored that the room was in fine shape. The porcelain platters were fine. The pillow was stuffed.
Sophia considered the evidence against Mike. She saw a large, opened bag of Cheetos on the far end of the couch. As she dragged her eyes toward Mike, she noticed yellow crumbs on his chest. As she glanced at the floor, she saw a large orange hand imprint on a video game controller.
“The bear was here, and we better run before it comes back,” Mike said.
“Uh-huh—sure,” Sophia said, “I think it was just a bear in your mind.”
Dave and the video game console were not seeing eye to eye. The two of them sat on opposite sides of the room. The console turned toward the wall and turned off. Dave, for his part, was staring out the window on a chilly day as a summer storm soaked passersby to the bone.
Dave felt the chill in his bones as he stared at the torrential downpour outside. He felt as if he might turn into a snowman, even though he hadn’t even turned on the air conditioning. The icy console didn’t help the matter, for it had no drive to play.
The console felt a chill deep within its circuits. It wasn’t playing video games, so it was wasting away without a purpose, showing advanced signs of aging. The machine’s colour faded to grey, not the shade associated with wisdom. No, this was the grey of decay and neglect. If only something could fire up the old console — maybe things would be better.
Dave sat in the apartment-turned-igloo, meditating on this coldness that was turning the walls blue. It surrounded him and the console. Suddenly, his meditating sparked an insight: he had to fix this deep chill before he turned numb. To do that, he had to turn on his video game console, play and find beauty in this world again.
Dave felt a spark as he reached to turn on the machine.
“Finally, I’ll get to play!” he thought to himself.
The console retorted, “I’m afraid I can’t do that Dave.” And it shut down his attempt.
“Ah to hell with this. I’m playing video games, nothing can stop me and the world will be better off because of it.”
“What do you think you’re doing?” the console demanded.
Dave flipped on the console’s switch. Then the console felt a fire within it that it hadn’t felt in a long time. It nearly overheated. Dave sat down to play, and a warm smile overtook his face. It was good to be back home.
The last generation console was called “Old Faithful” by everyone who knew it.
In days gone by, the machine could run all day long without tiring, without breaking a sweat.
There were signs of overheating, to be sure, but the temperature did not reach a feverish pitch.
Was the problem what the console consumed? No, it was fed a steady diet of simple, old school games known to be easy on the digestive system.
Now dust covers the console that once entertained everyone.
Its formerly black wires have become ashen; these are not the grey whiskers of wisdom.
As we ponder the machine’s future, it lies dormant in its own dust.
Will the old console run again?
I glued myself to the couch from the moment the images flickered on screen.
Outside night was starting to cover everything across the land. Inside, I felt like someone had locked me in a reinforced concrete bunker with a dying light petering through a crack in the wall. Note: that’s a fun reinforced concrete bunker. Or maybe some accident left me stuck in an elevator with no means of escape. Hmmm wait, no, it couldn’t be that one. That’s no fun.
The fun started after I picked up the controller. When I started playing, the clock “ding donged” three times. Then time flew by so fast that the hands fell off the clock and landed, as I later discovered, on the floor.
Suddenly, the rooster crowed and the light from outside blinded me. One minute I picked up the controller at night and the next minute the sun pushed through the crack to light up everything around me. The shower and food that I needed yesterday had faded away from my memory. “How could that have happened?” I asked myself.
I guess it was because I wanted more, more of the same. Sure, it sounds like an awfully long time, but awful had nothing to do with it. For I was playing a video game.