The Plight of the Aging Gamer


I went to pick up Uncharted 2 with my friend Bags on Monday night at midnight. I was fucking pumped! Hell yeah! I was going to play it until I died. I was going to mainline caffeine and snort pixie sticks and rub out loads to gorgeous polygons. Except that I didn’t do any of that. Because I have begun to realize, I’m an aging, antique gamer.

Bags and I went to pick up our respective copies that early morning. We burnt through the streets quickly, and we encountered no line at the store. The only hassle in actually retrieving the titles was the fat fucking sales guy. It’s past midnight and I’m just trying to grab my copy of Uncharted 2, and here is Joey Lame Piercings trying to get me to reserve more games.

Would you like to pre-purchase blahdy blah blah blah blah?

And I told the guy point blank, I already have like a million reservations with you fucking turd munchers. Ratchet and Clank, Modern Warfare 2, you even convinced me to put $5 on Bioshock 2 seventeen years early. But he persisted. Fuck that guy. Anyways.

I got home, and it was probably 12:37. Something like that. I don’t know why I remember that. And I was all excited and I was going to put the game in, when I was like, fuck, I’m tired. I thought of Far Too Beautiful For My Deserving Girlfriend sleeping in her studio apartment. And I faced a conundrum I hadn’t before:

Play Uncharted 2, or drive and snuggle up to my girlfriend and sleep a reasonable amount.

I thought to myself, man it’s late anyways. How long would I really play tonight before I got tired and started shooting at walls when a puzzle pissed me off? If I leave now, I can get to her house by 1. I can be asleep by 1:15. And I can wake up and play the shit out of the game in the morning.

I stared at Uncharted 2. I imagined the warm body waiting for me in Salem, should I choose. Nathan Drake looked at me and scoffed.


You fucking pussy, Ian.

I left the unwrapped game sitting on my PS3. I was officially going soft. I knew with grave certainty that my membership to the Retardedly Extreme And Absurdly Unhealthy Gaming Habits club was going to be revoked at any moment.

I woke up in the morning to a text message from my friend Buddy. He asked with an amazing, geeky LOTR reference (What say you) how I liked Uncharted 2. Buddy knew I had planned on snagging it at midnight. I couldn’t tell him. I had gone to bed instead of playing it. I was a candy ass.

I don’t know when I became such a practical person. I can’t imagine myself doing something like this five years ago.  Back in the beginning of my collegiate career, sleep was something I viewed at entirely optional.

I’d play Warcraft until 5 am. I’d fall asleep to the sounds of my mother ironing her clothes upstairs. Then I’d wake up at 8 for a Shakespeare or some shit. I’d drag my zombiefied brain around campus.   I’d sludge through the day just to do it again the next evening.

Now? Now I staring at the clock before tutoring these days thinking, Jesus, I need to get my ass to bed. And it’s not that I can’t do the late nights anymore. It’s that I don’t want to.

I think I find that even more disturbing.

I told Too Successful To Be With Me Girlfriend about what had happened. She was all,

Aw that’s sweet.

And I was like yeah, totally. What I really want to say was,

What the fuck is wrong with me? I’ve betrayed my roots!

I’m kidding for the most part. It isn’t that I find my evolution into a functioning, practical human being concerning. For the most part. Rather, I find the movement towards sanity intriguing more than anything. And it isn’t that I don’t have my share of late nights, but they’re fewer and far between.

Getting old. Falling in love. Being medicated. Who needs this shit?