Wednesday July 7th, 2010

Skull-Crushing Boredom in the Jungle

pitfallAt Powell’s, Tom Bissell has a smart piece about the influence of video games on children, and on him as a child:

I played a ton of games when I was a kid, certainly, but those games were of an entirely more limited magnitude of invention. Despite the enthusiasm of a youthful Jack Black, one can only run Pitfall Harry through the jungle so many times before skull-crushing boredom sets in. I often wonder how I would have turned out if the video games I play today were around when I was, say, seven. Would I have turned into the reader I am? I’d like to say yes, but I’m not sure I can. Given the contours of my obsessive personality, it’s just as likely that I would have wound up like one of the characters in Infinite Jest or some South Korean Starcraft player, expiring from dehydration after a 50-hour bivouac on the couch.