I was in Best Buy, shopping for a Father's Day gift and a CD for myself (Jeff Buckley's "Grace Around the World" CD/DVD), when I came to the video game section. I used to play regularly, but now it's only the odd weekend that I spend an hour or two with my Playstation 2. I have friends who own the current generation systems, and I enjoy/envy those when I'm over at their houses.
The store had a Playstation 3 set up with a 36 or 42-inch flatscreen monitor, and a demo version of "Guitar Hero: Metallica" available.
No kids around, so I picked up the guitar controller and rolled through a Soundgarden song on easy. Pretty awesome. These latest versions of GH/RB actually have the "singer" actually mouthing the words to the song, giving it a much more realistic feel to it. Then, I played "Sad But True" by Metallica, and holy crap, there's James friggin Hetfield ripping through the song, roaring out the words. I kept getting distracted by the amazing visuals, and dropping notes.
I finished my song and thought, man, maybe I ought to save up and get one of these, because that's pretty rad. There was a guy standing next to me, looked to be mid-20s, scruffy around the edges, glasses. I set the controller down, and with a wave toward the screen said, "All yours, bud." I walked around to the other side, where Rock Band was set up, but both controllers were worn out and not responding.
Scruffy poked his head around and said, "Yeah, that one's all messed up." I chuckled, "Yep. Too much love."
I am about to walk away, still considering how I may possibly afford to spring for a new gaming system in the near future, when Scruffy meets up with his friend (Pastey) coming down the aisle toward us. Scruffy then says to Pastey, "So yeah, my mom is buying me a thousand-dollar sound system for my room..."
A sick, stabbing pain hits my stomach. I grab my earlier selections and hastily proceed to the checkout.
That's why you don't get a $500 video game system, Dave. Because you're a grown-up now. Your Scruffy and Pastey days (if you ever had them), are long behind you.