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Archived Smirk

While we were mini-vacationing in Seattle this past weekend, we discovered The Best Place On Earth: Sega Gameworks. It's a 2-story arcade filled with every Sega video game ever invented (including a game where you go virtual bass-fishing…no, really…with a fishing pole joystick and everything!&#41, and during certain times of day you can pay $15 and play for an entire hour straight (2 hours from 11 pm to 1 AM!&#41 Basically, you get a little paper card to which you can add as much money as you want (it takes up to $100 bills&#41 using the "add-money" machines that are scattered all throughout the place. A lot of the prices of the games are inflated (the cheapest ones were 50 cents a play&#41, but when you're playing for "free" for an hour, who cares? You could play really badly and keep dying and it didn't matter! You were immortal! The first day (yes, we did go all three days that we were there&#41 we ran around like kids in a candy store playing a bunch of different games, mostly Virtua Fighter 3 — with the big screen — but over the course of the last two days we realized that we were addicted to Manx TT, the motorcycle racing game where you actually sit on the motorcycle! It was like drugs! We got calluses from gripping the the handlebars for so long, and then more calluses from the guns of Virtua Cop 2!

This place had everything — old fashioned games like Frogger and Dig Dug, a virtual reality Virtua Fighter where you actually threw the punches and kicks, a bar, a restaurant, a Starbucks and pool tables. It was addictive with a capital A…the last day we were there we went in thinking we would get the "School's In" Special: 1 hour of play for $10. To our great dismay, that very day they had introduced a whole slew of new specials, none of which included the hour of "free" play. We were bummed, but like the game addicts we are we just kept pulling money out of our wallets and feeding it into the damn add-money machines. "It 's like drugs!" I said, the sweat dripping off me, my face all flushed. "Drugs!"

Yeah, Gameworks is truly a wonderful place… but after playing Manx TT (a motorcycle racing game&#41 for a half of an hour, your thighs start to spazm. As we left the game to head over to the bar to have a celebratory beer, I noticed that Janet was walking a bit bow-legged (in hindsight, it seems that I was walking a bit like a cowboy myself&#41. It's funny, I forgot what it feels like to spend that much time on a motorcycle, even though these motorcycles are just fake plastic ones… you still use your thighs to steer the bike, and after steering for a half of an hour, your thighs just start to ache. After the beers, as we started to walk down the staircase to the exit, I exclaimed to Janet "Ouch, my loins!" It's now three days later and my legs are fine… and I am wondering if it is time to finally drop down the money and buy a motorcycle.

Posted in Smirks.

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