Friday, August 29, 2008

I Really Need to Get a Life

I think I've mentioned that I get caught up in computer games every now and then. It usually happens when I'm stressed out and looking for a total escape to another planet. When I can't focus on genealogy and I've been beating my brains out processing bad data and I'm too tired to knit, crochet or work on dollhouses, I have a tendency to fall into the trap of computer games.

During the work crush of July I was spending large chunks of my evenings playing Super Granny 3. This game has approximately 100 levels and the point is to race the little Granny character around the screen saving stray kitties, watering flowers and dodging bulldogs, pink poodles and maniacal robots. Along the way you have to collect enough points to purchase a required piece of equipment to reach the final half-dozen secret levels. I finally completed all the levels about the same time as the work petered out.

I mentioned this weakness at work the other day and was met with gaping mouths. I am something of an oddball at the office. The data processing folks are generally in their 30s and think I'm a grandmotherly type. There are actually two of us fifty-somethings in the group and we've worked together for almost as long as the others have been on earth. We are the wise old folks and it always surprises the youngsters when we reveal our quirky sides.

So I told them about Super Granny 3 and while they were still digesting that, I mentioned that I had played all the levels of Diner Dash (3 different versions), Luxor, Atlantis, and Pirate Poppers. By that time they were trying to decide if I was weird or senile. I got the distinct feeling that their mothers don't play computer games. I care not. I like being eccentric.

Well, along came this week and more stress and guess what? I needed an escape and I dug out an old game that I had not yet mastered - Westward. Being a fan of old Western TV, it's right down my alley. You settle a wilderness. You build housing for your settlers, set up timber camps to accumulate wood for building, dig wells for water, create farms and ranches to generate food, and set up mining camps to dig for gold to buy materials like dynamite for clearing boulders. Along the way you fight outlaws, try to keep your sheriff alive, repair buildings after tornadoes and fire, and suffer drought, famine and plague. Each level has tasks that must be accomplished to advance to the next level. It's a hoot and very addictive.

Needless to say, I am not getting much done this week except resting my brain from an overload of stress. No genealogy is getting done. No housework is getting done. No dogs are getting petted. My book isn't getting read. My bills aren't getting paid.

But my sheriff is still alive. Barely.


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