Thinktoomuch gazed in a drooling wonder upon El Crow as he shot, stabbed, punched, choked and careened his way through an entire horde of insectoid alien invaders that bled volcanic gallons of lime-green blood with every injury.
“How do you do that?” asked Thinktoomuch, sitting on El Crow’s dingy, unspeakably dowdy and odious couch.
“Do what?” El Crow asked, refusing to take his gaze or his attention away from the bestselling Playstation 4 game, IGOR, which title was a lazy, nonsensical acronym for lazy, nonsensical “InterGalactic Overlord Rivals.”
“How can you play that game so…so… like how can you do that? How can you slaughter 500 super-strong, super-agile, super-large insect alien warriors while collecting their hostages and reloading and changing weapons while, in real life, simultaneously lighting a cigarette and eating slices of pizza drenched in cheese oil without pausing the game or getting any of the ash or oil on any of the furniture? And you do it without any discernible difficulty. It’s literally unreal. You must be a prodigy of some sort. A prodigy of some stupendously worthless and meaningless kind.”
“It’s simple,” El Crow responded, again refusing to cease playing of the game, smoking and eating. “I’ve been playing video games on a daily basis for no less than 8 hours per day for the past 25 years. For the first five years, I saw only the controller, the TV, the pizza and the cigarette. They were all distinct and independent entities. For the five years that followed, I still saw the controller, the TV, the pizza and the cigarette, but this time they were all connected. They were part of the same system, the same process. Each element was still distinct, but no longer independent. They all worked together toward some stupid, meaningless goal.
“But sometime during the five years that followed that, the division between the controller, the TV, the pizza and the Cigarette dissolved wholly. They were no longer separate entities, and, more importantly, neither was I. I was not part of the process, I was the process. And now, I can buy any video game on any system and master it immediately. First I simply identify the genre of game, and understand the psychology of the game. The controller disappears, becoming one with my very fingers and hands. When the time is appropriate, I light the cigarette, but have no idea how it got lit. When the opportunity presents itself, I take a bite of pizza without getting grease anywhere, and with no idea where the pizza came from, how it got eaten and how the grease remained in my control.
“Now, should an especially difficult level on the game present itself, I pause momentarily, gauge the obstacle and allow the game to whisper to me the proper course of action, and, in the end, the game is won, the cigarette is smoked and the pizza is eaten. To explain it is almost to miss the point.
“It is said that a mediocre gamer replaces his controller every six months, because he smashes the buttons and often throws the controller across the room in a frustrated, inarticulate rage. An average gamer replaces his control every couple of years because he punches the buttons. A good gamer replaces his controller only when he replaces his gaming system, because he still jabs at the buttons. But a master gamer, his controller can last 20 years because he slides along the buttons, gliding across the surface without effort, certain of the movements before they must be done.”
Thinktoomuch sat with that information for several too-long moments, the air seemingly pregnant with the profundity of the conversation.
“That,” Thinktoomuch said, “That is THE most moronic fucking idiotic nonsensical nonsense I’ve ever fucking heard in my life. AND I’M A FUCKING POTHEAD.”
El Crow successfully massacred several hundred thousand more insectoid alien invaders over the proceeding five hours.