I wasn’t allowed to take advantage of a lot of childhood entertainment. My parents shielded my sisters and I from watching too much TV. Instead, my mean ‘ole parents encouraged us to read or play together. How dare they, right?! 🙂 My youth knew very little of the Smurfs, Punky Brewster, or Gem. Instead, I spent my limited TV time learning the worlds of Super Mario Bros.
When we would visit my cousins in Fort Collins, I would be allowed TONS of time to play the games with them while the adults chatted about whatever adults chat about. I never stuck around long enough to know. I would be upstairs with my hands on that controller before you could say “duck hunt.” And when we finally headed home, I had the knowledge of shortcuts and tips to play the game better and sore thumbs to remember the time by.
Super Mario Bros. 1 was a true original. Super Mario Bros. 2 was fun because you got to choose your player (I always chose the princess). Super Mario Bros. 3, however, was clearly the best of them all. Multiple worlds, earning cards, and racoon tails that allowed you to fly? Those things made an impact on me during my impressionable youth.
There came a point where I would spend my time elsewhere and Mario and I slowly grew apart. Until about a month ago when I learned that Mario Bros. 3 could be purchased for a mere $5 on my Wii. I’m not sorry to say that I downloaded it almost immediately. And amazingly, muscle memory took over. I remembered the tricks from long ago. Watching Mario grow with each mushroom and jumping on those duck-looking turtles to send them flying? Well, that brought back some fond feelings of my happy youth. And also, the sore thumbs.
At a time when my brain was on overload trying to process a lot, Mario stepped in and gave me a few minutes each night where I could relax and remember a time when I didn’t have to make adult decisions. I’m not going to lie, it felt really nice to just focus on helping Mario progress to the next level and not have to think about anything else.
Thanks, Mario. And sorry for neglecting you for all those years. You’re the best!