What I’m Not Playing This Week: The Anti-Grinch Edition

What I’m Not Playing This Week: The Anti-Grinch Edition

We are now only two weeks away from the most festive and therefore most busy and expensive holiday of the year, which means that, to many red-blooded males in the workforce, there are certain things that’ll be sacrificed in the immediate future for the sake of niceness and all that fluff. It certainly applies to yours truly as well; I’ve been working overtime and thoroughly enjoying it, with the intent of spending that hard-earned cash not on myself, but on those near and dear to me.

Of course, that also means all my immediate gaming plans are pretty much going out the door.


When you’re a wee lad,  you think of Christmastime as the best two (or three) weeks smack dab in the middle of the school year. No homework, no pressure, just all gaming, all the time. Even as recently as college, I can remember throwing my books in the corner and starting up Team Fortress 2; I’m fairly sure that in just a week alone, I somehow dedicated 80 hours to that crazy addictive game. In my specific case, I can openly tell you that I was a ridiculously spoiled child, especially when it came to the holidays.

With my parents having a total of approximately fifteen siblings, Christmas not only became a tedious affair of going to three or four separate houses to celebrate, but was also a glorious, glorious period in which I was almost literally showered with gifts from all relatives. Some were awesome (Nintendo 64 from my parents! BOMB!), some were not-so-awesome (Power Rangers VHS from my uncle when I was a high school freshman? Not sure if want!), but the fact of the matter is I had a pretty great childhood, and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t exactly appreciate it as a bratty kid.

Cut to my adult life. I have a consistent, fantastic job that pays me well enough to indulge most of my hobbies without making my wallet cry too badly. As someone with a semi-developed sense of responsibility and appreciation, I can now look back at my childhood and truly realize just how much my relatives must have given up to make myself, my brother, and my cousins all as happy as they could be. Just recollecting the story my parents told of their N64 hunting adventure is enough to make me feel like a scumbag for taking advantage of their dedication as loving parents. As an entirely self-absorbed individual, I don’t think I would ever go above and beyond like that for anyone but myself.

Except this holiday, I’m going to attempt to shed my selfish ways and start my journey to benevolence. I am incredibly behind on video games lately; thanks to time and money constraints, I still have yet to experience the world of Skyrim, continue my exploits as Batman, or help Nathan Drake get into yet another inconceivably epic mess. With this overtime-laden paycheck, I was intending on purchasing at least two of these must-play games and savoring them through the holidays. However, I realized that even if I have the money, I won’t necessarily have the time to enjoy them, and at this point I’m not sure if I’d be playing them for honest enjoyment, or merely for obligation.


That ambivalence has led me to discard that plan, and instead spend all my vidjagame money on those who helped utilize that habit and further advance my development as an all-around mediocre human being. Half of my paycheck is going to my parents; without them, you all wouldn’t be able to hate me as much as you all do today. Further, the remainder is going to be used for gifts for all the ones I hold dear around me. Those who have had to (and continue to) put up with me as a shoddy sibling, an unreliable friend, or just a plain douchebag, you all are saints and deserve more than the amazing, rare craft beer I have lined up for you. None of these little trinkets and tchotchkes will even come close to expressing how much I truly appreciate all of you for shaping my life and making it the most awesome it has ever been.

So yes, instead of playing video games this week (or the next couple weeks), I am spending my hard-earned money on others. Sounds like a stupid idea, eh? Well, so does Christmas, and yet it never fails to make my heart grow three sizes. Have an amazeballs holiday season, wieners.