Sunday, December 26, 2004

Ambushed by Counter-Strike

There she was, winking seductively at me from the top-shelf, the software package for Counter-Strike: Condition Zero. I gulped, squashed that nagging murmur and reached for her with trembling hands. My preciousssssssss..... Oh how I have missed you. Almost half a decade ago, from the time the first beta was out, I spent my life holed up in LAN cafes almost every day, breathing ah beng sweat mixed with secondhand smoke and imitation cologne, skipping meals, not seeing daylight, eyes glued to the screen and right-hand inseparable from the sticky mouse, shooting CTs or Ts, strategizing with my team, planting bombs, defusing bombs, rescuing hostages, using hostages as human shields, sniping from hidden locations, yelling "fire in the hole!"...ahhhh...you can be mine again for only S$24.90...

I paced the shop suspiciously clutching the precious package to my pounding chest.

The nagging murmur had been increasing
steadily in volume and by now had reached a shrill scream,"Put that down!!! Are you mad??? PUT THAT THING DOWN RIGHT NOW!!!"

Myprecious: "Oh shut up, prude. It's just a game. Good for winding down after a long day. Plus brownie points for buying an original and not succumbing to the temptation to steal from the developers by using pirated software."

Nag: "Do you remember what happened the last time? You were reduced a skeleton! You practically lived and dreamt CS! Whole months passed you by and you never noticed!"

MP: "Don't be silly. Soon you'll be saying she was possessed by the devil because of CS! Good grief!"

Nag: "Don't waste your time in this meaningless manner! You know it'll take at least a few hours to have a good satisfying game!"

MP: "Posh slosh! Just a few minutes to relax after a hard day at work. Why deny yourself that? AND studies have shown that gaming improves dexterity and hand-eye co-ordination!"

Nag: "Did Christ save your life so that you could waste it like that?! For shame! What about all those studies yet unwritten and people yet unmet? Are you abandoning these great things of eternal value for this slut?!"

MP (whimpers): "Cheat."

With sweaty palms, I put her back on the shelf and slink out of the shop.

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