Sunday, April 17, 2011

Play While You Play

I was tired of life lately. I hated everything that it had been reduced to by my peers and elders  - "a nine-to-five job, steady pay, work diligently, obey your senior colleagues, flash a smile at them even when you actually loathe them deep within, rush to catch that train back home, wrestle your way through hundred other sweaty, tired, foul-mouthed people for that single seat in a train while on your way home, find a nice girl who will take care of you, buy a home, procreate to extend your bloodline, change their diapers, break your head over which school should they get admitted for learning A B C's and 1 2 3's, and while you are at it stick to your job because that is what pays for that home loan which you borrowed from that bank." The people I grew up with are all married or are in the process of getting hitched, sooner or later they will be following that vicious circle that is defined above. 

The very thought of having my life built using the blueprint of probably every other person my parents and I know started irking me. Was that all that our lives were reduced to? Work, Marriage, Spouse and Kids, Mortgage, is that all our life revolves around? Where did Play go? Where was the pleasure of winning in a challenge or in a game? When was the last time I had ever given out a cry of exhilaration? There was a lot of rage built up within me. There was a  need to thrash the daylights out of those pricks who drive their vehicles jumping the lights while I try to cross the street, there was a need to tell the HR of how pathetic I find the grammar in their offer letters to be, and the need to tell them where exactly they can roll that piece of letter and shove it in, the need to speak my mind to those clowns who takes advantage of my benign self and deprive me of the privileges which they graciously bestow upon others with no questions asked, the need to keep believing that somewhere down the line the slogging is all worth it. Brick by brick the fury was built, and day by day the foundations became stronger.

Vengeance came at a heavy price and with a neat packaging, and when viewed in HDMI with a 5.1 surround sound I realized that every penny I had paid was worth it. Vengeance had a new name - Playstation 3. No more do I return home cringing and hating the very thought of going back to work the following day, no more do I curse everyone around me for the mistakes that *I* make, no more do I get angered by a seat missed in the train, or for that matter even missing the train that goes home. I have learnt to take criticisms with a smile on my face, I have learnt to face disappointments, and the best thing of all I no more depend on people to give me an emotional stability to calm me down. For I know that once I press the "start" button everything will happen the way I want to happen in this virtual world. Guns will start firing, cars will race at speeds unimaginable, heroes will start flying. Juvenile and ridiculous as I may sound right now but the very thought of going back home and playing a pre-programmed game where my character shoots down aliens, enemy soldiers, throttles the booster powered engines of vehicles, and blasts his way to jaw-dropping awesomeness leaves me on a high. This new piece of equipment has also made me take my job more seriously, it is after all the job that pays for my play.

Have you ever felt so enraged that you feel like putting those people who have rubbed your nose in the ground through a world of pain? Punching your pillow is one way of letting out your angst, but even better is when we gun down enemies in a PS3. There is a sense of power, an adrenaline rush that I get when I get the controller in my hands - the power to kill, the power to destroy, the power to be reborn in the battlefield when I bleed to death. And when I push the square, the circle, the cross and the triangle I know I am in control, the character does what I want to do. In his triumph I find my glory, in his kill I find an awesomeness that was missing. In the virtual world, there are no disappointments, there are no rejections, there are only escapes - an escape from the harsh realities of life, an escape from the endless loop that it is being played on, an escape from the organized chaos. And amidst the sights and sounds of buildings being demolished, villains getting killed, cars getting wrecked, and a mock vengeance getting claimed I could finally hear my own scream of exhilaration.

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