When I get home from work every day, I walk the dog, I plan what I’m going to cook for dinner and then I play video games with my friends online via Playstation 3 or Xbox 360. I’m 36 years old now.
My wife looks at me like I’m crazy when I hook up the system and put on my headset. She says I look like an operator from the movie Slum Dog Millionaire. There I am with the microphone and earpiece yelling at my friends while I brag about scoring a virtual touchdown in a game that won’t make a difference in anyone’s life seconds after it’s done. She’s amazed by how happy and excited the games make me.
As I write all this down, I’m amazed a little too. I’ve recently started asking myself: Am I too old to be playing video games? How old is too old to play them? Who knows? When I was younger, I used to try to get my mother or uncle to play them with me. They didn’t even know how to approach holding the controller. It’s a lot different now. Many things have changed since the late 80’s. But, video games are still toys. Every once in a while, I’ll play with a random person online… that “person” is usually an ill-mannered 12-year-old, who runs up the score and has the vocabulary of a sailor who has been in a Turkish prison for at least 10 years. Even that 12-year-old is asking: “why are you on here, old man?”
I have many other hobbies, including shooting photos and playing a lot of golf. Should I just drop video games all together and make my way into adulthood? My wife would LOVE it if I stopped playing and paid more attention to more important things, like cleaning out our garage and re-doing the guest bedroom downstairs.
Take this into consideration: I’ve spent more than $600 in the past couple of months on video games alone. That money could have paid a few months of electricity, definitely a couple of water bills and undoubtedly, it could have paid for those guest-room renovations we’ve talked about at home.
I don’t know if I can do it cold-turkey, but I’m sure going to wean myself off of the systems and most likely sell them to a child who can use them more than I.
Then, I’ll use the money I get from selling my video game collection to buy new golf clubs.
Manny Fantis was born and raised in Brooklyn, NY. His views are through the eyes of a New Yorker who has been bouncing around the U.S. for most of his life. He has finally settled down in the DC area and works as the Executive Producer of Digital Content at W*USA9.