Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Thanks To My Father...


My earliest video gaming memory goes all the way back to 1977. My Dad was into gadgets, cars and new houses. He had the money to buy all of these things, so my childhood was great. I was spoiled beyond belief. Just as an example I can remember my 5th birthday vividly. I came home home from kindergarden to see a pinball machine in the living room that wa all mine. I was so short that I needed a chair to stand on the play it. I racked up hundreds of hours on that table. I wish I still had it. Along with the pinball table we had Pong. When you're 5 years old Pong is cool. 
Somehow I remember playing the pinball machine more than Pong, but Pong was my first gaming experience. Four years later my gaming obsession would really begin.

In 1981 I would turn nine years old. I generally got what I wanted for my birthday. Yes, I realize that I sound like a spoiled brat, but I was a good kid back then. Anyway, I happened to see an Atari 2600 commercial on tv. The games they showed like Asteroids, Space Invaders and Pac-Man just looked incredible. I had to have it! I just had to have it! I of course asked my Dad if I could have an Atari for my b-day. He kinda messed with me about it talking about how expensive one was and all of that, but in hindsight what was he gonna say? It's not like he was gonna come right out and say sure I'll buy you one. There would be no fun in that. The day my b-day rolled around there were no gifts for me. Then my dad got home from work and off to the store we went. He really didn't say much on the ride to the store. My Dad rarely said much. When we got to the store I already knew I'd be getting an Atari. Needless to say I did get an Atari, and quite a few games to go with it. From that point on gaming was an obsession for me. All of this thanks to my Dad.

I ended up losing my Dad to cancer when I was just 11 years old. It was February 23rd 1984. He was only 32 years old. He was the best Dad a kid could ever possibly have. I just wish he was around to see how far gaming has come since the Atari 2600. I can remember playing games on the 2600 with him. We used to play COMBAT, OUTLAW, and ASTEROIDS.
Now I'd like to play some COD4 or Rainbow Six Vegas with him. I think he'd love those games as much as I do.

R.I.P. Jack Phelps

3 comments:

Wingman709 said...

I remember the days of the Atari 2600. I loved that thing. You could not get me off that console. I can still here the fake pac-man sounds. That was such a horrible version of the game. Pac-Man only turned left and right, he did not turn up and down. So the pellets went thru his head or butt when you were moving up and down. haha.

Anonymous said...

I didn't know your dad was so young when he died. At least you have good memories of him.

I was raised on all of those games. I miss the old style pinball machines, they were better than the electrical kind. I used to string all the games up at the arcade. Using fishing line taped to the quarter. Played tons of games for free.

Robert said...

Wing, that version of pac-man was definitely crap compared to the real arcade version, but I sure did burn up a lot of time playing it. The 2600 may have been the most reliable console in the history of consoles.

HaHa That rules that you used the fishing line trick! Me and a friend always talked about doing that, but were to chicken shit to try it. LOL

My Dad definitely died young. When I turned 32 a few years back it put a lot into perspective as to just how young he was when he died.

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I'm 38. I'm addicted to Xbox 360 gaming and Dallas Stars hockey. I make a decent living at a boring job where I run two autoclaves and do various other tasks. My escape from this boring as hell life is video games, hockey, and music. I generally listen to Metal music, but I also love 80's tunes as well as 70's tunes. I have an unusual love for the band Overkill. They do it for me for some reason. Blitz is GOD!

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