Tuesday, July 26, 2005

If you live in New York there’s a good chance you’ve heard about this “24/7 water gun assassination tournament” that’s going to be kicking off next Monday, and when you did your first thought was likely, “I wonder what Paul thinks about this?” Well, I’m more than happy to tell you: I’m feeling pretty ambivalent about the whole thing. On the one hand, the whole idea that adults should be able to enjoy a little kid-style playing, etc. is something I agree with, and I don’t have any sort of knee-jerk anti-gun "this game is promoting violence" reaction to it… but on the other hand, if I’m just trying to walk down a hot and crowded sidewalk and all of a sudden some securities lawyer comes barreling past with a giggly i-banker hot on his heels spraying wildy with a water pistol, there’s gonna be a small part of me that’s will be hoping that there are some British police officers around to throw them to the ground and shoot them each eight times in the head. I mean, not really… but sorta. I don’t entirely get how this is supposed to provide a welcome break from reality for the players either. Veteran players said it offers an escape for adults … "You feel what it's like to stalk somebody and also know that you're being stalked … You kind of live in paranoia for a while." Yes, that’s a real change of pace all right. Oh hey, and I just noticed this headline right above the headline about this game on MyYahoo's Top Stories. Like the securities lawyer who “created” this game says himself: "It's not really the best time in the world to have a game like this.” No shit, huh? A third, minor, problem I have with this story is that no account I’ve read about it yet has even mentioned that this live-action role-playing assassination crap was all over the place in the early eighties and there were at least two movies about it, T.A.G. and Gotcha. Hey, maybe there’ll be some kinda T.A.G. / Mazes and Monsters “one of the players isn’t playing” situation, too! Anyway, such are my thoughts on this news item. AND I’ve got a bonus thought for you, too… in another nearby Top Stories link we learn that putting a “heart” symbol in your headline doesn’t always translate properly: MIKE: I #™%¥ TOURISTS. Just one of the perks of the office, I guess.


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