When I was a kid, my dad sat me down in front of the television and said, "You don't need no schooling as long as you got the TV. Watch and learn, son." Boy, was he right. My first lesson was you don't learn anything until you put forth some effort. On the the fourth day of sitting in front of a blank television screen, I figured out I had to turn the darn thing on. But TV programs weren't my only teachers. My video game collection also tutored me on the lessons of life. Here are some of the important things I learned from my favorite teacher, Coach Atari.
Atari Game: Combat
Atari Lesson: War is futile and dumb.
Combat taught me that no one dies in war. What's the point in that? You get shot and you spin around for a while, but then you're ready for battle again. I learned that if you don't kill your enemy, he'll just keep hitting the reset button and asking for rematch after rematch. There's no end to war if no one dies. So until they can figure out a way to kill people in war there will be no peace.
Atari Game: Breakout
Atari Lesson: Ain't no prison can hold me!
After hours of breaking down multicolored walls, I realized that when I go to the big house I'll be free within a few hours. All I have to do is have someone smuggle a big paddle and a wall crushing ball to me and I'm Scot free. So, you willing to help a brother out?
Atari Game: Space Invaders
Atari Lesson: There's no use fighting the establishment. Conform now!
One independent spirit can ultimately only be crushed by the advancing army of conformity. Sure, early on you can ward off mediocrity for a while, but soon you'll get bored fighting it and settle into a nice life of complacency by the time you're 30. Just quit now, before you start.
Atari Game: Asteroids
Atari Lesson: Women just don't get video games.
Every time one of those bastard rocks hit my space ship I would scream, "Damn it!" Then my mom would slap the back of my head. I tried explaining to her that her hitting me wasn't helping my game playing she would slap me again harder. Can anyone explain women to me?
Atari Game: Golf
Atari Lesson: My Uncle Gus is a pussy.
My uncle Gus got me the Atari Golf game for Christmas one year because he didn't like the idea of people shooting at each other or at aliens for that matter. I also learned how to hate golf without ever having to go to the trouble of picking up a club.
Atari Game: Donkey Kong
Atari Lesson: The observations of the Zaire Mountain Gorilla by Dian Fossey are invalid.
All of Dr. Fossey's research fails to take into consideration what an ape could do if it was given access to an unlimited supply of barrels. This should have gotten me my doctorate, if those jerk wads at Stanford would have let me defend my thesis instead of having me tear gassed by the campus police. Fuckers!
"Stick It In The Slot"