Monday, June 25, 2007

Today, a friend of mine helped me install an emulator so I can go play Super Nintendo games on my Nintendo DS portable gaming device. It's amazing how something so small can now do what a device the size of two shoeboxes requiring constant 220 voltage and a television set can do more than 10 years ago. (pretty much like how small kids nowadays can now smoke what hippies used to smoke)

In case you don't remember, Super Nintendo (SNES) is that gray and white gaming console that came out a few years after the red and white family computer reached its peak. I think family computer died when it reached the 10 Gazillion Games in one cartridge point and people said "FUCK I CANT PLAY ALL THESE GAMES!"

Anyway, I suddenly remembered how badly I wanted an SNES back then. At that time, (middle gradeschool years) the only way I could play with an SNES was to go to an SNES rental shop. OH HO.

And yes, I was forbidden to go to those kinds of places. I knew I shouldnt be caught going there. Reasons? Well two.

a) There's a house policy that you can only play computer games during: Christmas vaction, summer vacation, and right after the quarterly final exams.

b) I already got caught many many times. Each time made my buttocks so blue, if you saw me buttnaked after a punishment session you'd think I was wearing skinny jeans. First time I got caught, I was only six.

But I played anyway.

True, I may have sounded like a heroin addict desperate to get a fix but at the time, it all sounded rational to me. My grades werent really bad, I knew I could maintain my position in the pilot section, and for what it's worth, a couple of lines of seven in the grade card isnt so bad (to me at least).

And as I remember things, the wanting to play the SNES actually did something very important for me. Case in point? Hear me out.

In our gradeschool/highschool, final exams are usually conducted during the morning. From 730AM to a little before lunchtime, we're to take the final exams of 4-5 subjects per day. Normal, right?

What makes our system special is that all subjects are taken in succession and time limit is at the discretion of the student. In other words, you take a subject's exam, finish answering it, submit it to the teacher, get the next subject, finish it and then proceed to the next one until you're done.

This way, it is possible for you to focus to subjects where youre having a harder time while shaving off time from easier subjects.

It is also possible to fuck up so badly that you end up spending all your time on one exam with little or no time to answer the rest of the final exams- which happened to many a foolish student - but that's for another day's tale.

One good aspect of this system is that if you can, at least theoretically, finish all tests as fast as you can - it is possible to leave earlier.

As I have earlier pointed out, one of the times I can actually play legally is right after a final exam...

You can probably get now where this is going.

That's right.

To maximize my SNES playing bliss, I felt I had to finish the exams as fast as I could - but I had to be sure enough with my answers so I didn't get any failing grades that would end me up getting grounded.

Speed and precision is the name of the game.

Answering exams quickly was what I did and did good. As I remember it, I held the record for being the fastest test taker (who didn't end up with failing marks) in our class from our gradeschool years, and I stood by that feat until I finished college. Yes, there were other guys who sometimes answered faster than me but the quality of work is almost always incomparable.
Even now, whenever I meet my old teachers, they'd would identify me as "that motherfucker who was always too eager to finish exams quickly".

That's probably why even through my college years I never really found myself out of time while taking any exam - because I've conditioned myself that there's an SNES game session at the end of every test.

While it's true that studying should be a reward in itself, the thought of a reward at the end can make things a lot easier - and for this case, faster.

All for the love of the (video) game.

1 comment:

rei said...


you're the MAN!!!



. . . gah, i badly need an inspiration (again, . .)

thanks for the tip Sr.Red~ ^^;


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