Love in a Time of Video Games

My wife is cheating on me with our Playstation.

Fine, I exaggerate. However, sometimes I wonder if she is more emotionally committed to the latest installment of “Grand Theft Auto” than to me. Of course, I was the one who irritated her with my obsessive devotion to “Final Fantasy.”

Revenge is sweet.

I would like to see some type of statistical study on the kind of damage that video games can do to a marriage. Forget setting up romantic dinners or remembering her second cousin’s wife’s birthday: the real challenge to many committed couples today is making sure you don’t kill each other while arguing about whether or not “Assassin’s Creed” lived up to its hype (I say yes, she says no).

It chokes me, but I have to admit that my wife is a better gamer. To be perfectly honest, she even has a better relationship with my parents than I, their son, do (“why can’t you be more like Dina*, son?” – a question I hear almost as often as the “when are you going to give us grandchildren?” inquiry). Maybe, she is better at living.

Does my wife have to make a mockery of my high scores? My knowledge of elaborate cheats? My commitment to the art of gaming?

The answer, I am discovering, is affirmative.

I have no one to blame. I created this situation. Once, I made a horrible blunder. I became competitive with her. I forgot that in relationships, excessive competition is not healthy. Before we were married she knew that I was the better cook. The sight of a kitchen makes her confused, while I navigate everything from the stove to the juice-maker easily. This didn’t trouble her.

It didn’t trouble her that I could touch the tip of my nose with my tongue and she, by contrast, could not. She could be humble about such life-and-death matters.

I had lost my humility, however. Perhaps now it is time to find it again.

Men are jealous of women who excel in a “boy’s” field, and gaming is still dominated by the boys. There is nothing manly or natural about the jealousy. It’s simple stupidity. Even as one’s friends point out that one’s wife is more fun to play “Halo” with when we visit them (we have steered clear of buying an Xbox, if only because we don’t want to die, covered in mold, while attempting to play every good game the world offers), one must remain committed to the idea that she has the right to the praise she receives.

Let her continue the Playstation affair.

I’ll console (pun intended) myself with my secret shrimp recipe.

What? I have to be good at something.

*- Name changed to protect the innocent.

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One Comment

  1. Posted February 27, 2008 at 12:15 am | Permalink

    Shrimp is yummy!

    That’s all. :)