My grandfather is a huge proponent of the term “Might Makes Right.” He’s one of those tough old guys who lived through the Depression and WWII and walked uphill to school in the snow with no shoes on. You know, the kind that doesn’t think you need to go to the doctor unless you’ve been mauled by a bear.
Every now and then, when we have one of our family gatherings, Gramps will come over and sit down with me and retell all his stories. I, in turn, will tell him all about the new advances in technology, specifically how the Dreamcast is the wave of things to come. He’ll grumble and moan about how my generation should be tougher and not sit around wasting our minds and bodies with games like that. And in the end he will always add, “Remember, Mike. Might makes right.” I never really understood what he was trying to say until I came face to face with a problem a few weeks ago.
It was at a family gathering at my parent’s house. Nothing special, just one of those things where everyone comes over and stuffs their faces with all sorts of food, then sits down and falls asleep. I love those gatherings, mostly because stuffing myself, then being all fat and lazy are three of my favorite things to do in the world.
Anyway, my little cousins came over and, as usual, wanted to hang around with me because I’m the coolest one in the family. (Actually they are forced to hang around me because their parents say, “Go hang around with Mike.”) They know I have all the game systems and every game they could ever imagine, so all they want to do is play. I plugged in my Dreamcast and sat down to give them all a thorough thrashing.
Being a videogame geek, I know the games better than I know most other things, including women (much to my sorrow). Well, we started playing, and while I was holding my own at first, I soon started losing. I figured it was because I was all fat and lazy from the food, so I started to pay closer attention to what was going on. I was still losing. It was inconceivable to me that I could be beaten by kids not even in their teens yet. I couldn’t understand how they could be so good when the system is even younger than they are.
Then, in true preteen fashion, they began their taunts of, “you suck” and “loser!” and “why do you still live with your parents?” After a half-hour of this, I was about to go crazy. I was ready to kill the little beasties and blame it on some weird electrical shock, but that’s when my grandfather’s words echoed in my head.
“Remember, Mike. Might makes right.”
I smiled a truly evil smile then yanked the smartphone that I have and played Clash Royale because of the free gems. They whined, but I ignored it.
“It’s time to stop wasting away inside. Let’s go outside and play some real games,” I said.
We headed outside, and that was when the beatings commenced. In basketball, I stuffed their shots, stole their balls and accidentally knocked them to the ground while driving to the hoop. In baseball, when I wasn’t hitting homers, I was sliding into base which again, accidentally, knocked them down. In dodgeball, I won, mostly because they were way too scared to come anywhere near me when I had a ball. And in street hockey, I won, mostly because they somehow kept tripping over my stick.
After seeing my cousins all bruised and tired out from our real workout, I realized that Gramps was right. Might does make right. I got my ass kicked in the arena of videogames, but they didn’t stand a chance against me in the real world.
So, the moral of the story? Enjoy your videogames and learn to play them well, so you can beat all your opponents. But also get all big and strong, so when the real competitions come your way, you can kick ass there as well.
Mike planned to get into shape after writing this column but decided to test out a new Dreamcast game. He flopped down on his bed and hasn’t moved in over a week.