I’ll do it after this game

I was going to use this space to discuss graffiti in bathroom stalls, but then decided I didn’t care enough.

Then I thought to use it to talk about racism on campus, but I’ve already done that.

Then I played NHL on XBOX 360 for a while and it dawned on me that I would write on a matter of grave importance, which affects my personal, academic and professional lives—wasting time playing video games.

I bought NHL and Madden 09 at the start of the year and it was the worst decision I’ve ever made. When I’m too lazy to do homework or newspaper work, I simply flip on the TV and beat the pixilated men on the screen.

It has become a social event and sometimes friends come over specifically to play fake sports. And for what benefit?

There’s no health advantage to it; if anything, staring at bright lights for hours on end and moving our thumbs around is detrimental to our health.

As I previously mentioned, video games negatively affect our ability to do work. In fact, halfway through writing this very editorial, I played two hours of NHL, living vicariously through my Be-A-Pro character, flying up and down the ice, laying out superstars like Sidney Crosby and Alexander Ovechkin, fighting Zdeno Chara and scoring on Vesa Toskala. Nothing else I’ve done all week has been quite as satisfying.

This, of course, delayed the writing of this piece and various other articles.

Sports video games are like crack to me. I have friends who spend their spare time studying, others who spend that time volunteering and, still others who spend spare time exercising. All these activities better the doers in some way, whereas mine does not.

Mine makes me lazier. Mine makes me want to snack. Mine makes me think that maybe I should have a beverage in my hand. Mine makes me perfectly happy to sit in my apartment by myself and look at a screen. Mine makes me happy not to bother going to a bar with friends on some nights. Mine gives me an (admittedly poor) excuse not to do my readings.

Yet, after writing all this, it dawned on me that I couldn’t care less. Because having written all this down, it has become apparent that having an excuse to vegetate isn’t always a bad thing, as long as there’s moderation.

If I can moderate my vegetation and supplement the time truly wasted with a solid round of studying and working, it won’t seem like such a detriment.

So I guess the case I’m trying to make is, although video games are indeed a waste of time, they can be a great escape from real life. Because really, who wants to work all the time anyway?

Also, to my editors: the Journal is indeed a priority.

To my professors: studying is definitely a high priority.

To my friends: I wasn’t blowing you off because I really did have work to do.

To my parents: disregard this editorial; it was written by a different Amrit Ahluwalia.

All final editorial decisions are made by the Editor(s)-in-Chief and/or the Managing Editor. Authors should not be contacted, targeted, or harassed under any circumstances. If you have any grievances with this article, please direct your comments to journal_editors@ams.queensu.ca.

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