My neighbor growing up was my best friend. We’d play American Gladiators together after we watched women’s wrestling for hours. She also had everything I ever wanted.

Like a Nintendo.

My parents were, as I’ve previously mentioned ad nauseum, teak and fine china people. They were the original wooden toys people (after, of course, the pioneers and the Amish) and would’ve been pretty happy if I played that weird hoop game or made things out of piles of sticks. I’m pretty sure they, at one point, bought me a wooden doll. Yeah, you read that right: I owned a wooden doll. Is it any wonder that I’m as maternal as a sack of rocks?

(answer: no)

When I begged them, year after ever-loving year, for a Nintendo, they scoffed at me: Video games? I should be reading a book by candlelight or sewing my own clothes or churning butter. Not rotting my mind on video games!

It bears mentioning that my older brother spent his days and nights playing Zork on the computer.

So Nintendo? I had no stinkin’ Nintendo.

Which meant I spent an inordinate amount of time at my best friend’s house, begging her to let me play one level – just one level. She, delighted at the sudden shift in power, would tell me, hail noes until I got up to leave, and when I did, she’d suddenly develop an interest in playing.

Eventually, my parents bought me a Sega Genesis, so while my friends were teaching Mario to fly with those stupid fucking raccoon wings, I was playing Echo the (Asshole) Dolphin. There went any interest I had in becoming a dolphin lover.

Today, I don’t like games. Can I blame my parents for that? Probably not. But while Daver and Ben sit on the couch at night playing games on their (not so) Smart Phones, I sit and actually watch television. My parents probably DID have a good hand in making sure my attention span was greater than that of a gnat. Thanks, Mom! Thanks, Dad!

But my children, God love them, they love their games. Video games, to be specific. And I’ll begrudgingly admit that video games have come a long way in the past (mumbles) years.

What kills me, though, is this: with all of the awesome games out there these days, my kids still want to play fucking Mario games. Or Sonic games. The shit that was around (mumbles) years ago when I was a wee crotch parasite.

Not only that, the kids love to WATCH those old television shows. The ones my parents forbid me to watch because, like video games, television rots your brain. I was allowed to watch an hour of public television. A day.

But my kids? They’re in love with some creepers “Super Mario Super Show” from the 80’s. And the Sonic the Hedgehog cartoon. Stuff I never saw. And thank GOD for that, because holy creepers, Batman.

You’d think that with all of the newer television shows with LESS creepy characters, they’d opt to watch them. But no. They’re watching stuff that both Daver and (older) Ben watched. I’d have probably watched them too, had I not lived with hippies.

Now, I’m thinking that the kids need some wooden dolls or that hoop game or some sticks for Christmas.

Seems only fair.

Comments = full of the awesome. Like gravy. I can haz an RSS RSS feed .

20 Responses to Nintendo Generation

  • SarahBee says:

    I love that my kids love the geeky stuff. My almost 8 year old daughter makes PacMan 8-bit art with beads. I’d rather her play hours of Mario and problem-solve with Zelda than be sucked into fairy-princess-Barbie-land – a place I will never understand. I never had a playstation/nintendo/pod-thing when I was little. I think my parents shopped at the same wooden-hoop store yours did. I had fun, though. I did, however, sneak my cousin’s Game Boy when he’d visit over the summers, instigating my life-long obsession with all things Tetris. (and strange Russian folk-techno?)

  • Andie
    Twitter: lilmscreant
    says:

    My kids are weirdos like that too. My older daughter especially is obsessed with Sonic the Hedgehog and all his little vermin friends. So much so that she and her sister asked to go as Rouge the Bat and Amy the Hedgehog for halloween this year. I was like ‘Great, my kids want to go as characters that haven’t been relevant to anybody but a hand-ful of 20-something gamers for over 15 years.

  • Jaime says:

    my parents wouldn’t buy me a video game console…. not because it would rot my brain but because my dad was concerned it would ruin their tv……….. so I also would go to friends houses to play their video games…. I feel your pain.

  • Mayor Gia says:

    We had a nintendo, and I remember watching my mom and older sister playing mario together (I had a sesame street game, hellz yeaaah!). When I was older, I got an N64. I still love Dr.Mario and MarioKart. These things stay awesome forever.

  • Barbara says:

    My kids love old school Tom and Jerry, Fat Albert, Mario, you name it. I prefer them to today’s sanitized stuff. Besides, Dora scares me. No one should let their 5 year old explore the South American rainforest with nothing but a whining monkey and a talking backpack. :)

  • LR says:

    I say, buy them a “Tiddlywinks” game. If they don’t like it they will still giggle hysterically at the name. A win by default.

  • I totally wasnt allowed to have a video not because of wooden dolls we needed to play w but because…my parents wanted us to buy it. Learn the value of a dollar.

    Always envied my cousin….but now…now I get to play it on my system! Yes, I am 31 totally reliving my childhood

  • Kimmy says:

    Aww, it it makes you feel better, my toddlers are addicted to Fraggle Rock and the Muppets. They are 1 and 2. I was amazed to have them turn up their nose at things like Barney, and Dora the explorer, but you start a fraggle episode and they speed it to the tv. from ANY room in the house!

  • steph gas
    Twitter: stephgas
    says:

    i don’t have kids. but my youngest cat likes to watch ‘ghost hunters’.

    seriously though, i didn’t have a nintendo either. well, actually, we DID have one. but my stepfather refused to let us hook it up, even though both my brother and i had televisions in our bedrooms and promised to share. instead he left it in his closet for FOUR YEARS, box unopened. when my brother finally got a sega genesis, my stepfather let me hook up the nintendo in my room.

    i ended up spending most of my time in my brother’s room with him and his genesis. we played A LOT of mortal kombat and nba jams. and in the arcade, where no one understood how a girl was able to beat them at mortal kombat.

  • magpie says:

    This tells it like it is: http://www.wired.com/geekdad/2011/01/the-5-best-toys-of-all-time/all/1

    stick, box, cardboard tube, dirt, string.

  • Michy says:

    I bought myself a Nintendo a few years ago. And this it broke this year. *sadface* I’m totally gonna get another one at some point. I want my Dr. Mario. Until then, I’ll have to make do with my phone, my computer, my PS3, and, uh, that thing rattling around in my head that claims to be a brain.

  • statia says:

    My kids are total Nintendo generation. They run around screaming phrases from He-Man, and original old school Transformers. Next up, I’m buying the Jem series.

  • Chibi Jeebs says:

    Chebbar’s 3-year old nephew has amazing dexterity and shit because of playing (what *I* consider FAR TOO VIOLENT FOR A 3-YEAR OLD *ahem*) video games.

  • Kristin
    Twitter: dragondream
    says:

    My kids are all into the retro tv shit too. Makes me shake my head.

  • Marta says:

    While my 4.5 year old is extraordinary adept at playing on my iphone, but his skills on the wii are lacking. Though he does love to watch other people play the 4 Mario Games we have. I find it somewhat amusing that its the same games from my generation. Except I too never had a Nintendo. I did have the Sims though,. Which made me awesome.

  • Di says:

    Aunt Becky, me too! Whenever I played any video game, I had no experience, hence idea what to do. I just held down the joystick and kept shooting. That is true to this day. AND I got 1.5 hours of commercial-free TV Ontario per day – so that was Sesame Street and one other thing (usually Polka Dot Door). Good times! Now my kid is obsessed with Cars and Daddy’s iPad. (Though an iPhone will do in a pinch.)

  • Cindy
    Twitter: WalkerCynthia
    says:

    Bwahaha, WTF?. I had one I’d the original Atari games. That’s how old I am.

  • DiatribesAndOvations
    Twitter: DiatribesAndOs
    says:

    I’m OLD SCHOOL … I had an Atari! I kicked some Space Invaders ASS and my brother was the king of Asteroids. He was so very proud of his ‘roids record.

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