My Geeky First Times.
A league of extraordinary bloggers post.
It’s no secret that I’m a suave, debonair “geek-about-town.” It’s been that way for a long time and I’ve become quite accustomed to the lifestyle.
I can send chills up a retro console system’s spine just by entering a cheat code. It works every time…isn’t even hard.
At a comic convention, I can leave with any trade paperback I want regardless of who she showed up with.
I’ve literally had vintage action figures fight over me. It’s embarrassing but let’s face it. It’s pretty hot.
Despite the walking geek catnip you see before you today I have some shocking news. It wasn’t always like this. Like the rest of you there was a time that my “encounters” with geek pop culture were my first times. And even for me, first times can be crushing, scarring and so humiliating that there is nothing else to do but recount the awkward and embarrassing moments in a blog!
My first time with Video Games.
It was a dark and stormy night. No seriously it was dark and stormy. At four years old I was a mere claymation were pup and woke up, scared by the thunder. The house was totally dark and silent. I walked the halls yelling for my parents who were nowhere to be found. Beginning to panic, I eventually made my way to the front door and walked out into the yard of our apartment complex. Somewhere between my wandering and sobbing I somehow attracted the attention of my parents who were at our neighbors, two houses down. The neighbors had invited my parents over for a night of fun playing their brand new Atari home video game system!
By all accounts my parents had a great time. The Atari was new! Exiting! And it was the first one on the block! It was the kind of thing that would change the way that my parents looked at home gaming! It mesmerized them! They loved it so much that nothing could distract them from the Atari experience. Even an abandoned, and frightened child.
My first time with a Haunted House:
Children of my generation watched a lot of horror movies. We weren’t so protected back then. I consider the 1980’s the silver age of horror. The slasher movement was in full force and kids loved it. We not only liked the movies, we idolized the monsters themselves. Jason Vorhees, Michael Myers and Freddy Krueger were pop culture superstars! I saw things no differently and had a bedroom covered with posters of my favorite homicidal maniacs, both homemade and carefully removed from issues of Fangoria and mad monster party.
One would thing with that kind of appreciation for the darker side of life that if I were given the chance to come face to face with my favorite monsters I would be overjoyed! My parents thought I would when they drove me to a local haunted house that featured the monsters of my favorite movies.
As I walked the haul of the haunt each door opened, revealing a killer ready to strike. It was a blur of hockey masks knives and chainsaws, at least for the first couple of seconds before I looked down and clenched my eyes shut. For good. All the way home I hated myself and re-lived me defeat. I imagined going through the haunted house again with a bunch of fake weapons. This time I would scare them! I wouldn’t let fear control me ever again! It was time to do things my way.
I never set foot in another haunted house for 15 years.
My first time with Action Figures.
Picture it. I was back at that apartment complex that I mentioned in the story about my parents abandoning me for a video game. I had a friend that lived a few apartments down named Dwight. Dwight was the best. He was five years older than me and I thought he was just about the coolest guy around.
He listened to cool music. He dressed cool and he had really cool toys that I had never seen before. They were called Masters of the Universe! I had never seen the action figures or even the cartoon but it was love at first sight! The armor, the weapons the awesome vehicles and weird mutant bad guys. Because he was so cool Dwight let me borrow a huge portion of his collection and I got to take them home for the night and play with them. What Dwight hadn’t counted on was that I was a chewer and within a short time I had flattened the fingers of several of the Eternian warriors.
My parents were humiliated and had to buy Dwight all new He-Man toys. On the plus side I got to keep the ruined action figures and that experience set my love of action figures into action. It was also the first time I got a real taste for Masters Of The Universe. Taste. See what I did there?
So…there it is. My fumbling awkward first times with geekdom. It was tough to relive those moments but now that I’ve done it, it feels pretty liberating. But enough about my inexperienced past. Lets talk about my VERY experienced present.
Oh and to those limited edition Monster Cereal Bobble-heads I see across the room? I’ve been noticing you noticing me.
How you doin‘?
Meanwhile, At league of extraordinary bloggers headquarters!!
The goodwill geek tells the story of a birthday part that set him off on a slippery (but awesome) slope!!!
Miss M at diary of a dorkette met She-Ra for the first time. And the rest was history!
Lee and Linz at Pop Rewind tell some great "first video games" stories!