I'm a pretty normal 18 year old kid. I've played hockey since i was 4 years old and loved every moment of it. I've always kept my grades up to par in school and will be attending a big 10 university next fall- HOO HOO HOOOOSIIEERRS! I'd like to believe i have a great group of friends with whom i can share my interests and trusts... Yet, theres something my friends dont know about me, something you can sure as hell believe ill be keeping to myself for quite some time.. Well, forever, to be exact.
I have spent nearly 2000 hours of my life playing a single game. 2000 hours, or 83 days, or 2.78 months or- i think you get the point. (Believe me, most players at the IM+ level have well over this amount, some ranging beyond the 5000 hour mark). Countless times i've had my parents ask me to join them for a movie, or to go out for a bike ride or something of the sort, and yet they're always fed the same answer: "i'm playing this game, i cant leave right now!" Time after time, like a stone at the bottom of a motionless pond, the response has been the same. Now, I'm going off to a college that is four and a half hours away from home, and i wont be seeing my parents, or any family at that, more than 3 or 4 times a year. Yet, when they were there, i ignored them. And for what? This game i am so "dedicated" to?
Now, dont get me wrong, I'm not trying to bash on the game or the people who play it- i mean, shit, some of these guys i know better than my pals in "RL." And i love em. All I'm saying is, and I'm sure plenty of you all can relate, that when i look at my steam community page, and see the ugly white letters next to the TF2 symbol, "2000 hours played," i get pretty damn discouraged. I think to myself, god damn, the things i could have done with my time. Ive read, dont go quotin this here clown, that it takes about 10,000 hours of repetition before we "master" an activity. Well shit, ive played this game for 3 years and managed to rack up 2000 hours; if i practiced my game in hockey with the same frequency as I've spent playing TF2, after nearly 14 years i figure i'd be chillin on the top line with Claude Giroux on the Philly Flyers, smoking a season finale blunt and enjoying some smooth jazz. I'll keep dreamin i guess...
Anyways, my parents always say, Ryan, you really need to give up on that stupid game. I look them in the face, and oh boy do i agree with them, i feel like should have quit playin long ago. But, as you guys well know, it aint always that simple. Throughout the years, I've made friends i cant say i wouldnt absolutely love just kickin back and enjoying an ice cold vanilla coke with. There's been laughs, theres been competition, but most of all, theres been friends. To the outside eye, its just a stupid video game. To a member of the community, its a hell of a lot more than that and I'm damn sure you all can relate.
Honestly, the lure in the game is a real tricky thing, its somethin that sneaks up and bites yah on the ass when you arent lookin. Its a tough thing to do, give up on something youve devoted so much time to, but sometimes yah just gotta call it quits. After nearly three months of raw time spent plopped down, cool ranch doritoes on deck, playing this game, i think its about that time. This is in no way a commendment for those who continue to play this amazing game competitively; its more of a journal of my thoughts and reccolections from my time spent in the game. Anyways, if youve stuck with me through reading all this damn garbage, i just wanted to say thanks. Thanks for hearin me out, and thanks especially to those ive played with that have made this game somehow playable for so many hours.