Screen Shot 2013-12-27 at 6.55.58 PMI’m the proud owner of a gaming system. It’s a hand-me-down gifted by someone who couldn’t believe we didn’t have a gaming system. It was as if he found out we didn’t have food or had only one pair of socks to share between us. He had extras and gave us an X-Box 360. I wrapped it and put it under the tree–it was a hit. I’ve never owned a gaming system. Correction. I have owned one. Pong. We had advanced Pong, which came with a skeet shooting game–there was a duck option, too, before that’d get you killed by PETA or DCYF, because guns certainly are not cool these days.

I used to hole up behind the couch and wait for my unsuspecting younger brother to play squash or tennis. At just at the right moment, I’d sniper the ball. The ball would disappear, and he’d lose. It was really funny. I was a good shot. The game was too primitive to realize the gun didn’t go with those games.

The good Lord rewarded my malice by never gifting me a gaming system. My brother got a Nintendo, and all of my friends had Ataris, but I had nothing but books. Look where it got me.

So, now that we have a gaming system, I find there are a lot of nifty things I can do with it, like finally get my movies on the flat screen TV we bought when we moved into this house fifteen months ago. I’d have skipped the TV entirely and gone with the books, but turns out that wasn’t one of the choices.

I tried to set up the X-Box myself, but I’m not certified. It seems to be a gender-specific operation for boys from the ages of 3.5 to 30. I’m not in that demographic. Video games are not for girls my age.

Nerd #1 helped me yesterday, but it was taking too long and I was getting upset. If I can calligraphy the Gettysburg Address faster than I can turn on a device and make it work, then someone in Silicon Valley or Japan has to get on the stick and make it more moron proof. It’s just not keeping up with me. I needed a break.

Nerd #2 came to the house today, giving me a hands on tutorial on how to use the controller. It’s a pain in the ass. I painstakingly entered in every single letter of my entire history, arrow by arrow, erasing and starting over more than once. Then I got this gamer ID issued to me–one that I cannot possibly remember. I snapped a picture of it. I don’t think anyone wants to play games with me, but if they do and they don’t shoot me immediately, I’ll need to remember my own name.

Really, though, I don’t want to kill anyone or shoot rainbows out of my butt. I just want to keep my promise. I told Declan he could play Skylanders.

Two hours later, the X-Box is set up. The house is quiet. The boy is watching Netflix–which he was watching on the computer just this morning. But now that he has the Netflix-X-Box, I’m getting to do some work after all. The X-Box 360 has bought me some peace. Just wait until I figure out how to put Skylanders on. It’ll be even quieter.

Declan told me he was going to give me what I wanted for Christmas–world peace and an end to human suffering. Turns out, he has given me an iota of it after all.

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