Thursday, January 29, 2009
Towards the end of the holiday season, on a snowy late December day, my brother Sam and I experienced possibly the least productive day on Earth by any two human beings. With the rest of the world out enjoying things like family and daylight, we were holed up in his room for a good 12-15 hours, equipped only with an Ipod, a jug of peach iced tea, and most importantly, a Nintendo-64. While the rest of the world has moved on to the XBOX and PlayStation craze, we have stayed strong with the underrated '64.' We stick mainly to sports games. It's pretty much a healthy dose of 'Madden 98' and 'NBA Live 2000,' a little 'Griffey,' and when things start to get really depressing, 'Fifa 99.' Here are some highlights, or more appropriately, lowlights from that infamous day.
At one point during our run of 8 straight 'best of 7' three-point contests on NBA Live '98, Sam realized how very useless both of us had been to society today. He said, "We could have done something good today. Did charity work...served food to the homeless." Instead, we were about to start another split-screen 3 point shootout pitting Gheorge Muresan against Gheorge Muresan. Sam thought the announcer was calling him "Parmesan" instead of "Muresan." This led to Sam randomly shouting "PAR-MIZZ-ON" at different points during the day...I don't think he even knew he was doing it.
I proposed that to make things a little more interesting, we play a full game with fouls turned all the way off. After a 5-4 first quarter score with about 25 combined turnovers from unwhistled muggings, it hit me that my suggestion was yet another bad decision in a day filled with nothing but them. On the bright side, I won the game and forced his starting Warriors' backcourt of John Starks and Muggsy Bogues into a 4-29 day from the field. Caaaaaashhhhhhhh!!
Our rule when doing the 3-point contests was that you couldn't use a player that we've already played with. Towards the end, it started becoming very difficult to find such players. Keep in mind...there are 12 guys on each team, 29 teams in the game...and we were struggling to find new ones. I don't even want to think about calculating how many contests we'd done to essentially run out of players.
When one of the special teams guys went down with an injury to the ribs, Sam felt a severe pain in his upper abdomen at the exact same instant. We were slowly losing the ability to differentiate real life from Madden.
During the 2nd half of our epic "10 minute quarters" game, we both swore we heard Pat Summerall announce that there was a "flag on the field." However, at the conclusion of the play, no infraction was displayed. We were both now hearing things...bad things.
After Sam scored to take the lead and go up 4 with over a minute left, leaving me plenty of time to come back for the winning TD, I asked him confidently, "Honestly, who would you rather be right now?" He replied simply, "Somebody else."
SHOULD HAVE KNOWN WHEN TO STOP
After about 8.5 hours of Madden and Live, I picked up a different cartridge (one of the hardest words in the whole world to say) and held it up to gauge Sam's interest level. He took one look, and nodded. The game was "Rampage." You know...the one where you take some crazy looking gorilla or monster and proceed to destroy various buildings in a city. At one point, this was a semi-classic arcade game, and then even a respectable Nintendo game. Now, it was 2008, and we had no business getting involved with these characters. (Speaking of which, I spent at least 90 seconds selecting the color of my beast before we started. I want that 90 seconds of my life back.) After one level of eating policemen and bringing down high-rises, we realized what we were doing and turned the game off. We knew that what we were doing at that moment was a complete waste of time...so we turned it off and took the game out immediately. And replaced it with Madden.
We contributed absolutely nothing to society that day. We didn't step foot outside all day long. At the end of the day, with tears in his eyes, Sam said he wanted to spend all of tomorrow just "looking at family photos." Couldn't have said it better myself...
Was the N-64 the most underrated system of all time?? Game Gear is in the discussion, but the battery power on that bad boy only lasted you about 2.5 quarters of Joe Montana Football. Drop your thoughts right after this article, or fire me an e-mail at email@example.com
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