Christmas Memoirs Of An 80’s Kid

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I really like it when readers email me their stories to post here on The Sting Of The Scorpion Blog, I like reading them all. I especially like the stories that I can relate well to, such as the following story, because I was an 80’s kid. Being born in 1968 I can remember most of the 70’s, how things really started improving in the 80’s, and as a young adult when the 90’s started. But, I remember being the kid who “caught” my parents pretending to be Santa Claus red handed. I had always wondered how an old fat bastard got around down here in southeast Texas, the humidity had to make him sweat something fierce. Plus, having a fireplace was more like a decoration, it wasn’t meant to be functional, it was meant to be the eyesore in the corner where all the junk collected. As a kid I grew up and lived in the same house for 16 years, never once was the fire place used. My mother installed lights in it to accent the seasonal array of plants she would put in it to fill the void. Our winters are mild here to say the very least. But, this isn’t my story to tell, I turn y’all over to read the story of another disappointed 80’s kid.

​Fortunately, I’m guessing, I don’t have a horrific Christmas tale of woe to share really, Scorpion Sting. Let’s just call it the “God-awful, just heinously suck-fucking-tastic family Christmas story”, okay? What I do have, however, is a tale of complete parental letdown, a tale of epic Santa denied disaster, and ostensibly the end to ever seeing the world of gift giving the same forever.

Do you see this here? That Tabletop Pac-Man circa 1983? Yeah, well, that’s all a young Spirit Fingers wanted for Christmas. And how could anyone not want this wonderrific arcade game styled in true arcade fashion making for the unique opportunity to eat ghosts, cherries, and power pellets right at their frigging fingertips? This was THE quintessential gift item. Yah, Cabbage Patch dolls were for over exuberant baby-lovers, Freezy Freakies gloves were for nerd-junkies and future Fox 5 weathermen, naw, the Tabletop Pac-Man, that, my friends was for cool kids with skillz, the ones who wore Jordache not Wrangler, had crimped hair not crispy bangs, who prided themselves on acquiring over 50 Garbage Pail Kids, not those who played Uno with their cousins on Friday nights. Yah, knowledge of the T.T.P.M meant you’d actually been in the mall arcade with real high-school kids, if only for a few seconds before your mother grabbed you and said you’re too young and they probably smoke “reefer” in there.

So, I’d dropped hints about this thing. Showed everybody the picture in the Toys R. US (parental nightmare) catalog. Put it as the NUMBER ONE gift on my Santa letter, which was stamped, mailed, and shipped directly to the North Pole of course. I even confirmed this fact during my phone call to the man himself. (In the 80’s parents calling taped phone recordings of “Santa” so their kids could “talk” to him were popular) and felt I had done all I could to secure the gift. I stopped smacking the ever-living dog shit out of my brother for breathing. I washed dishes for two weeks straight without an increase in allowance, AND smiled graciously when my Nana mentioned some lameitude about pink and blue Barbie themed legwarmers. (which I actually received to my shame)

Everything was all set. Cookies were set out. PJs were on, off to bed I went, secure that Santa would bring me the toy that I could play, but was also excitingly portable so you could bring it to taunt all your friends who just got LEGOs or some other “thinking child’s” toy. Now, every parent knows no kid goes directly to sleep on Christmas eve. They all just lay wiggling in their beds in a ball of hope and Santa magic straining to hear reindeer or the jingle of bells until sleep forcibly takes them. So instead of bells or a distant “Ho, Ho, Ho.” I hear a battery operated whirring, and a chorus of whines and staccato electronic bleats and bleeps…very odd for a house built in the 1950’s to make. I creep downstairs to the kitchen to find my father and mother bending over a TABLETOP PAC-MAN game blustering and cursing AND fucking playing the shit out of my Christmas gift like they’ve been doing so for frigging weeks! I’m appalled, I’m mesmerized, I’m thrilled…I’m really fucking angry. Their excuse, “Well uh, we had to know if what Santa brought you…um, earlier, actually worked, because how could Santa really check everything that leaves the shop, right?” Bullshit, fuckers.

In twenty seconds I’ve learned there’s no Santa Claus (assholes), parents lie (assholes), and videogames are way cooler than anything ever if one can lead you to being an asshole in front of your child, and then of course, send them to bed and expect unadulterated joy when they open their NUMBER ONE Christmas gift in six hours that has already been sullied by the hands of Santa Claus thiever of Jesus Christ day veritable joy hijackers…i.e. the people who created and birthed you.

— Just Another 80’s Kid

The Fucked Youth Of Our Nation

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It may not be fair of me to judge all of the youth of our nation based on my personal interaction with a few of them lately. But, real quick, I want to share what happened at the gas station first thing this morning. See the picture of my hat? Did you read it? Do you know what it is? At the gas station, this 20 something kid asks “dude, that game is awesome, Deadwood is super hard tho”. Me, “what in the fuck are you talking about”? Kid, ” I’ve been playing that badass game for a couple weeks now, it’s badass dude”. Kid, “you been playing”? Me, “it’s a fucking city in South Dakota you dumb shit”! Kid, “no its not, its the game I’ve been playing on the Xbox, its not a city, that would be a stupid name for a city, its a game, ask your kids, they’ll tell you.” I shook my head and walked away, hoping that his stupid didn’t get on me. Check, I’m clear. What a fucktard bonehead!

Do Any Of Y’all Play “Big Fish Casino “?

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Why do I ask? Is that what your thinking? I personally find it fun to play in my spare time and wondered if anyone else did as well. If you do then we should become “friends” and if not then you need to download the app so we can be “friends”. Next time you log in to play use my ” friend code”. As you already know, adding Facebook friends adds to the bonuses one gets.

Just a quick note. I do not get anything for mentioning this game, I just wanted to use my blog as an extra outlet to “connect” with “friends” worldwide.

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Why I Had To Play My Dad Card

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Normally I try very hard to keep my “dad card” tucked away in my wallet. There are times, though, I have to raise the bullshit flag and call it the way I see it. I give allot of trust to my children still living at home because, in general, they give me no reasons not to trust them. Sometimes, when the line gets crossed, it gets worked out without too many hard feelings. But not this time, this time its different for some reason. So, let me start with the way it all started. My 17 y/o volunteered to drive my 12 y/o son to the mall so he could spend his money that he had been saving on a new game for the Xbox 360. Now, I wasn’t aware what game was purchased at the time and had not seen the game in question played until this past weekend. The only reason I saw it then is because they where in the living room since the Xbox 360 is connected to the 70″ HD television in there. Still, no problem, they play games there every day. Anyhow, I took a seat in my recliner looking to hopefully catch a nap but the very graphic images and very racially graphic language caught me a little off guard, prompting me to inquire what game it was that they were playing. Very nonchalantly my son replies by telling me it is Grand Theft Auto 5. I watched him play for about 5 more minutes and then I instructed him to turn it off, put the game in the case, and set it on the end table next to me.

In a very disgruntled way he complied with my request. Then we talked for a minute, and then he headed off to his room to get ready for bed. My daughter remains behind along with my wife, who decided that my actions needed to be questioned.  My daughter explained what she knew about the game from the times she spent playing it, some of the ins and outs, and the general just of the game. This prompted me to do some reading online and to me eventually playing the game with my daughters assistance. I was not and remain not impressed with the game. Now, readers here know I don’t have the cleanest language. The bad language on the game only started bothering me when I got to thinking about the age of my son and how I really didn’t want him repeating any of the racially charged comments in the company of any human being. He isn’t raised being a racist dumbass and I will prevent it from happening any way I can. I could get into the morality of the game, which is about lieing, cheating, killing, stealing, and of course, car jacking. In the end, the game is pretty influential in the overboard glorification of some very negative behaviors in our society. The game is rated M for Mature Audiences, not 12 year olds. Personally I don’t see the draw to the game in any regard.

The verdict? Well, since an open game cannot be returned to the retailer I gave my son what he paid for it. He was also given some stricter guidelines and was told the next time I will not be as generous. Don’t mistake me for some kind of purest prude, because I am not, but I am a father who wishes to help my kids become proactive individuals in our modern society. The damn internet and television do not raise my children nor are they my children’s babysitter. With that being said, I know they have good heads on their shoulders and I know they wouldn’t take the game too seriously, but don’t think it is an appropriate game for any age. Now I have this stupid game which I will NOT be putting for sale on eBay but will instead be using for target practice the next time I head out. My opinion? Fuck this game. Save your “the game is harmless” comments for someone else because I don’t want to read them.