Retro Video Games, First Posts, and Stranger Things

After escorting Miss 17 to a famous fashion retail establishment this afternoon, I left her to peruse their wares and crossed the road to see what the second hand video game store might have on display. I wasn’t planning on buying anything – I just wanted to look.

My plans began to fall apart then I saw the Playstation 2 tucked away in the corner of a display unit. They completely disintegrated two minutes later when I also found copies of “Ratchet and Clank”, and “Jak and Daxter” among the shelves of traded in games.

There’s a back-story here. About fifteen years ago I owned a Playstation 2. Both myself and my other half would play it after work as a means of relaxation. She sang along to Abba while playing “Singstar”, I tuned my pretend supercars in “Gran Turismo”, and we both went on wild goose-chase treasure hunts as both “Jak” and “Ratchet” in their respective video games. We loved those games – but then children arrived in our lives, and we needed money. We sold everything.

Fast forward to this afternoon, and Daxter once again fell into the Dark Eco and became an “Ottsel” (I always thought he was a mongoose – it’s amazing what you learn if you bother to read about things). Over the course of an hour all the children congregated around the Playstation 2 and the smack-talking began as they took turns. It’s worth pointing out that their phones, consoles, and tablets were all forgotten. There’s a message somewhere there about gameplay trumping graphics, internet connections, and ridiculous hardware specifications.

Getting back to the shopping trip thread of the story, we had some time to kill before getting our bus home, and the kids hadn’t eaten for several hours, so I took them to McDonalds for some fries and a drink. While sipping at drinks and laughing about the random things you do while also jamming soggy fries into your face, Miss 17 retrieved her phone from her pocket and started tinkering.

“Ooh! I can carry on writing my blog post on the phone!”

“Yes, yes you can.”

This evening she finished the blog post, and then agonised over her writing, her punctuation, if she had written enough, if she had written too much, if the picture was good enough, if the tags were correct – everything you could possibly imagine.

“Don’t worry about it! The important thing is that you’ve written something. People will like you, because you’re you – and you will get better each time you post”

I know I was just “being encouraging”, but it’s true. There are so many blogs out there filled with advertorial link bait, shallow attention seeking, and gameification of every damn aspect of “blogging” that a new voice posting real thoughts, stories, and opinions is going to shine out like a beacon. It may take people time to find it, but they will.

Anyway. We have another several episodes of Stranger Things to subject ourselves to, lest the army of spoiler toting assholes ruin it for us. Please excuse me if I fall off the internet for the next several hours.

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