Fear and Lothing in Tampa Bay

Gaming can be addictive.  By gaming I refer to spending hours and hours of shooting bad guys on my Playstation, not playing the slots at the Hard Rock casino, although both are equally addictive vices.  Compounding the fact is the ability to play online.  To take on a complete stranger, perhaps halfway around the world, in what is never a meaningless game of Madden football.

Every so often you will come up against a kid, or grown adult for that matter, who will ‘pull the plug’ on a game.  You intercept a pass and take it all the way back for six, or you go into halftime with a 49 point lead.  Now, I admit I have done my fair share of plug pulling.  It’s human nature I guess.  You get so frustrated you just turn the game off.  Heck, we do it on Sundays for real games.  I know I have turned off my fair share of Dolphins’ games, especially this past season.

And there are times when that mentality, that feeling, spills over into my real life.  Into my personal life.  I look at what I do, I look at who I am, I look at what I haven’t accomplished and I just want to start over.  F**k it! Reset.  Let’s try this again.  But I can’t.  There is no little green button to push like I have on my Playstation.  There is no deleting of accounts and records followed by the creation of new ones.  It feels sometimes that all that’s left is blank stares at the floor and head shaking.  Where did it all go wrong?

Where did I deviate from the path?  When did I become this person so ….. so ….. so different from who I am supposed to be?  I mean …. there was a plan.  Things were supposed to work out a certain way.  Career, kids, home.  It’s not supposed to be like this.  I was supposed to be the exception to everyday.  I was supposed to shine above everyone else.  I was supposed to be special and different and unique!  Dammit, I was supposed to make it!

…………………………………………….instead, I am a cliché’.  I am just another statistic.  I am one of those guys that people talk about.  The guy with all the potential who peeked just a little too early.

I mentioned that gaming can be addictive.  Actually, for me it’s just a way to make today become tomorrow.  What can really be addictive is self doubt.  And self doubt can lead to self loathing.  And the only thing worse than being miserable is being miserable all alone.  I think we all are forced by God to serve penance for things we have done.  One way or another, God finds a way to make us pay back our mistakes.  My penance is found not in acts of charity or great misfortune, but rather in being given time.  Time to think.  Time to dwell.  Time to obsess.

They say time heals all wounds.  The funny thing is that sometimes time can make the wound just a little bit deeper.


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