It is spring, which means a few things. I can wear my cute shoes again, the First of May is mere days away, and it is time for spring cleaning. As part of Cleaning Ginia’s Goddamn House 2010, I have spent a considerable amount of time re-assembling my scattered video game library. As I sorted through the various discs, manuals and cases, I found myself having an experience akin to flipping through a school yearbook or a photo album. Each game logo inspired flashes of memory, of people, places, seasons, foods, music. These seemingly random elements are forever bound and tied to these games for me, and I do not always know why.
I played Lufia 2 on an emulator in 1998, when I was supposed to be performing telemarketing duties from home for a local theatre company. Sorry about that, guys, but your plays really sucked. Thanks for the money. Now when I see or hear mention of Lufia 2, I immediately think about the overbearing sunshine and songs like “Summer Girls” and “All-Star” which were often playing in the background. I remember how I had my laptop setup on this hop chest, and I had to kneel down to play it, and how much that would hurt my knees after awhile. Still better than working, though.
Despite how many times I have played and re-played Final Fantasy IX, that game will forever conjure up memories of Christmas, of feeling sick, and eating M&Ms, because that is how I spent my Christmas holidays about 5 years ago. Final Fantasy Tactics, on the other hand, another game I have played often, is linked to Lusipurr’s old Caribbean blue bedroom and ramen noodles, no matter how much time I spend playing that game in my own pink and cream and definitely NOT blue room.
I played Final Fantasy X while recovering from a busted foot. That foot twinges with remembered pain as I write this. I remember that pain and the frustration and embarrassment of that injury before I think of the Sphere system, that dumb sports game, or the infamous “HA HA HA HA” scene.
Any Mario games makes me mentally flash to my mother’s old floor model tv and the ugly orange carpet I would sprawl out on while I played various SNES era Mario games.
Soul Calibur and Brendan are inextricably linked, as are Alex and Sonic games, and Michelle and LittleBigPlanet. Oh, and sushi. The first time I played LittleBigPlanet was also the first time I tasted Formosa’s sushi. Good times.
Games have always been a huge part of my life. They remain my primary hobby and therefore one of the key anchors for my memory. For others things like music, sports or food are their anchor. I could not tell you where I was in the Canadiens won the Stanley Cup back in the 90s. I forget what my graduation song was in 2000. I can tell you what I was eating when I finished Earthbound (Nerds and Fun Dip) and who was there when I finished the final stage of Super Mario Bros 3 (Anna). My only memory of the old hand-me-down TV I had when I first moved into this house is playing Final Fantasy VII on it.
I guess I just have my priorities in order.