From the Writer Formerly Known as The Jaded Gamer

Editor’s note: In order to capture the entire zeitgeist of the decade in question, I had to attempt a simulation of my mindset at that time. As a result, I’ve had several “beverages,” I’ve driven the neighborhood crazy by playing every hard rock ‘70’s song I can remember through my 50-watt Marshall stack (to be honest, I could have plugged in the 100-watt Marshall stack, but I have developed something akin to mercy in my old age), I inserted the first four Foghat albums into my stereo on infinite repeat, and… I PLUGGED THE VIDEO PINBALL MACHINE

IN TO THE 60-INCH TV!!! Why? Wait for it…

The 70’s was a very special time for me: I’d survived the ‘60s with only one bad trip, I graduated college in ‘73, and by ‘75 I’d secured the mandatory blue collar, 9 to 5 job; all of which meant I was ready to become a Rock and Roll star just as soon as I could.

To that end, I found myself a band of like-minded fellows and we proceeded to make ourselves the best band Chico had ever seen. We called ourselves “SIGH” and we practiced seven days a week, four hours a day. As much as we all wanted it, it became evident very quickly that we needed something that would help get us through those rare times when the Muse wasn’t working. That something was VIDEO PINBALL!

I’d been given an Atari Video Pinball machine for Christmas by my Dad back in 1977 (this is the same Dad who gave me the Vic-20 computer and several Scott Adams adventure games, but that’s another weird story), and since I didn’t watch TV back then, the Video Pinball game was always hooked up and ready to rumble… and rumble it did…

The console that I’d been given had three games residing in its silicon memory:

Pinball, Basketball, and Breakout. While Pinball always got the competitive juices flowing, it was Breakout that became the schwerpunkt of Rock God status. Basketball? Hey, Rock stars don’t play basketball!

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