Yes, my nephew is my Padawan learner.
To Be a Kid Again

Ice cream sandwiches on hot summer days. Cartoons all afternoon and Saturday morning long. Great neighborhood-wide games like "kick the can" and "hide Jeremy's shoes". Sleepovers at friends' houses where you try to stay up all night playing Nintendo. Homework cram sessions in the carpool to school. Actually counting the days down to Christmas and feeling like it would never arrive.

What a horrible world it could have been.
Just imagine a childhood without Nintendo or Atari 2600! Is that a world you want your kids to grow up in? They wouldn't understand the complexities of finding the negative world in Super Mario Bros., or how to save yourself from paying for door repairs in the original Zelda by turning off the system fast! These video game examples teach real life lessons. Like how to kill turtles and mushrooms without fear or regret and how to get away scott free after destroying old people's property.

Yes, I speak of youth. My youth, your youth, everybody's youth. Unless you're a redheaded stepchild who got beaten more regularly than Tina Turner (cause she wouldn't shut the fuck up!!) I'm guessing that you have some pretty fond memories of your childhood and that you've longed for them in at least one instance in your miserable life.

Personally, my childhood was pretty grand. I had all the G.I. Joe figures and vehicles I could ever want (well, other than the U.S.S. Flagg Aircraft Carrier and that Space Shuttle thingie); I was allowed to eat sugared-up cereals (unlike my friends the Chionchios who only got to eat plain Cheerios I'm guessing because of the rhyming thing); I was allowed to play outside until kinda late on school nights (till around 8 o'clock, which is like 1AM in adult time); I had a Nintendo in my bedroom (and my sister wasn't allowed to play it); and I would participate in an average of 2-3 sleepovers a month. If that's not living right I don't know what is!

Now that I'm much older and farther away from those delightful days of yore I can finally afford to look back without breaking down and crying at the thought of being that much more elderly and closer to death. Honestly, I still do cry a little, but it's mostly cause I miss my Transformers so goddamn much. But this new perspective of age that I now have is a blessing and a curse. It's true that I can see just how great I used to have it as a child, but I can also see just how much I don't have now. Yeah, I have lots of DVDs and books and shit, but they don't hold the magic of my He-Man and Hot Wheels collections. It's true that I still have most of my original Nintendo games and a working NES, but other than Metroid, Super Mario Bros. and Zelda, I was horrified to find out that I now completely SUCK at just about everything in my classic video game library. What kind of a fucked up reality do we live in where imagination and game skills get worse with age?!

Ideally, we, as human beings, would get smarter, stronger, more imaginative and more free thinking the older that we get. Instead we get duller, lazier, and more like a cog in the boring and broken down machine known as life. To quote Cliff Clavin, "What's up with that?" Sure there are still a few adults today with the minds of children, but they turn out to be gay children's show hosts, or mentally mongoloid. Or both. In which case we can't tap their minds to find out how to be free of the shackles of drab grown-up living. So sad.

If owls could deliver messages my balls could develop film.
Sometimes childhood can be so traumatic to certain kids that it causes them to lash out in the form of deluded fictional reality worlds in which they are kings/queens. The recent trend that I've noticed it children wanting to kill evil parents with Harry Potter-like mad magician skillz. The only cure that I've found is to drop a car on them and tell them that Ron and Harry must have lost their magical powers while flying to Hogwarts because they had the magic AIDs in them. That usually shuts the retard muggles up.

As an experimental experiment I recently tried to find some of my lost imagination from years gone by. I spent an entire weekend reading old Spider-Man and X-Men comic books, playing with whatever GI Joe toys I didn't hawk off for booze money in college, looking through the women's underwear section of the 1987 Sears Summer catalog, and attempting to remember where the fuck the final dungeon was in the second quest in Zelda. Well, the comic books got boring fast (it amazed me to see just how completely repetitive they all were and how none of the female characters got naked). The GI Joes were still cool, but I didn't know how to get them into a battle-filled storyline that didn't involve Flint trying to seduce the lady Joes, the Baroness and Tomax and Xamot (who were the closest he was able to get anyone into the sack, FYI). The Sears catalog was still pretty provocative in this day and age, but when compared to the internet (where a boy can find over 2,000 images in less than 5 seconds of women sucking off kangaroos while cats with strap-ons shag them from the rear) it just ain't enough to do anything for me anymore. Honestly, now I need at least one form of hardcore lesbian action (involving no less than 6 women) to get even slightly aroused. I did remember where the final Ganon dungeon was in Zelda and I kicked the dark prince's pig ass back to the Golden Land, but without the use of realistic 3D polygon-graphics depicting severed limbs and gallons of blood drowning out my TV screen, well... 8-bit Link just doesn't do it for me anymore either... But not in a sexual way. Those tights are still ass perfect.

I guess that I blame society for my woes. You see, back in the old days, like King Arthur's time, kids only had a few board games and Slinkies to play with and they spent most of their time praying to a loveless god to spare them from the black death. That went on for generations. Now, every 6 months to a year toys and the availability of pornography evolve exponentially. In no time will we see the advent of soldier action figures that fight the bad guys themselves, without the aid of children, and then hit the local whore houses for some much needed R&R (the whore houses coming equipped with a life-sized blow up doll of Bangkok Betty with kung-fu grip and "sucky sucky" lifelike squishy sounds... God how I want to be a toymaker!!!).

Is this a bad thing though?

Continue on to Page Two
to see if this is a bad thing >