Every 7 year old is cute. Well, not every one, I knew this kid once, well, I won't get into that. Let's just say that he never showered.
But I was cute, a real heartbreaker. I had every girl my age at school eating out of the palm of my hand. It was great. I can't say I was a player, I was too shy for that, but in my mind I understood the power I had over girls at that age. And I wielded that power with grace and cunning.
The best part about growing up was the summer, duh, but we had a roller-skating funhouse in our town and were given free passes from our school to skate there every day if we were so inclined. It was a great way for parents to keep their kids busy, and for some kids it was a place to actually "get busy". (Just kissing, nothing more)
I saw Michael Jackson's "Thriller" for the first time while roller-skating there, it was by far the biggest event of the day when it was played on the 80 inch movie screen in the corner. That was a rush.
The biggest event of the day, however, was when the lights were turned down and the slow, romantic music permiated every into corner of rink. On alternate days you would see one of the following: 1) Girls sitting on the pony wall along the north side holding out there hands just waiting for a boy to grab them and pull them into the rink of love to enjoy a skate and a glance, and maybe, just maybe, even hand-holding. /gasp! 2) Boys holding out there hands hoping that nobody would touch them, but it was mandatory, so we had to.
One day it was my turn to skate around and look at all the little cuties lined up on the wall, hands stretched out in anticipation, and here I am wielding once again my power. What great days those were. Anyway, I saw a group of 3 blond-headed cutesies bunched together. With all the bravado I could muster I skated by them and said on my next pass I'd like to take all three. They giggled at me, then as I skated off said something like "yes, finally" whispered between them. So the next pass I held out my hand ready to grab each in turn when all of a sudden they grabbed me all at once, and so hard did they pull at me (in order to lift themselves off the wall and onto the skating rink) that they pulled me down to the floor where the back of my head hit with the force of ten tanker trucks.
Within the minute a couple adults supervising the skating were at my side administering first aid. My world had come crashing down and those cute little girls were to blame. So much for my hand-holding venture, what a failure. Sure, maybe I was a little to ambitious, but so what, a guy has gotta try, right?
So how in the world does this have anything to do with World of Warcraft and my motives for playing it? Well, as I was resting on the sidelines watching those girls skate away with other, less cute boys, I walked around the arcade part of the building and saw a Miss Pac-Man game calling me. That game had an exploit where you could spin a penny into the coin slot and trick the machine into thinking it was a quarter, it was great. So instead of holding hands with the cutiest girls in school I started playing games that day...and the next, and the next, and the next.
My summer ended with little concern over girls and cuteness, I even felt my power receding into the background. It was still there, believe me, but it remained dormant for a few years. I wasn't ready to wield that power again just yet.
But that day granted me a new hobby. I liked games as much as the next kid, but that day got me started on a path of fun and a lot of time wasted. I later got the new Atari 2600 (at least I think it was that version). I could play all kinds of different games now, and in the comfort of my own, soft-floored, home.
So let me thank those cuties for setting me straight. I don't know what I would be like today if they hadn't nearly split my head in two.
Later brings part two...Adolescence. Ick!