Saturday, November 3, 2007
The Video Junkie
What happens when the infernal thing blows a circuit or the power supply is cut for a couple of hours? Admit it, you can't live without looking at that small screen in your living room (or that big screen if you can afford one of those RM11,000 plasma TVs). You're a Video Junkie, plead guilty and we'll say no more. What? You never watch the stuff - you'd rather sit in front of your computer every night? Working on the household accounts or answering e-mails? Okay, maybe for an hour or so - and then what do you do? You slip in that pirated video game and off you go, into a private oblivion of electronic euphoria, titillating your braincells with cute little dit-dit-dits and delightful brooooop-toodle-oos as you blast those sneaky-nasties off the screen with sheer digital dexterity. Zap zap zap! Kill kill kill! Yahoo! Believe me, I know how much fun it can be. I've spent hours in some kind of absolute anti-social heaven just fooling around with the UFO game that comes with my pocket calculator.*
And when your concentration starts wearing down after 2½ hours hunched over your little toy and those mean microchips get the jump on you - I know how it feels. Yes, and I've also felt that sense of quiet competence just watching my score accumulate: the exhilaration is almost like you're thundering down the highway in a stolen Lamborghini and no one's ever going to catch up with you. But how long before you need to flex your fingers or rub your neck or go take a leak? Come on, how can you ever hope to win? Silicon wafers don't get tired. And the day you eventually do win you'll only find your wife has run off with her gym instructor or some Yugoslavian diplomat.
*These days it would be mobile phones. I've seen kids hypnotized for hours by some mindless game played on their mobile phones in between watching music videos on those teeny-weeny screens.