The Xbox Widow

“Why do I have to cook dinner” the young man said.

Very faintly, over my headset I heard the reply “It’s your turn, now turn off that stupid game”.

“Bullshit, I cooked last night.”

“Get away from that thing and come cook the chicken.”

“Let me just finish this level and I’ll be right there.” He replyed.

Next I heard assorted grumbling and he told the other players in the Xbox world that he had to go because his wife didn’t understand.

Honeydoer 1 had no idea that all of our hearts went out to him at that time. That for a lot of us, we have had this same conversation countless times. We could offer no advice because we also had found no strategy to insure victory versus the Wife that thinks we play to much Xbox.

What is our biggest obstacle to playing countless hours of fun and achieving greatness? Is it that our thumbs become Arthritic? Is it the power company cannot handle our countless demands for electricity? Is it the alien horde coming down from above.

No, it is the wife that hates the Xbox. She would prefer to do other things like “spend time with us” or “raise the children” or “eat”. Clearly she does not know the importance of our mission: To randomly anniahlate a virtual representative of demon spawn.

She cannot understand our addiction, our desire. She cannot understand why we will say we are coming to bed and then actually stay up until 4 am. She cannot understand why, god why, WE MUST FINISH THIS LEVEL.

We have tried to explain it to her. We have tried to let her know that her future, indeed her very freedom, may rest on whether or not I can T-bag Mr. Honeydoer 1. She mocks us, makes fun of us and eventually rips the cord from the wall.

The Wife says things like “I’m pregnant” to get us away from the xbox. But we counter that if she is pregnant now, she will be pregnant for another nine months so there is plenty of time. She says “The baby is taking her first steps”. Good, maybe she can get me a coke and a hot pocket now.

I have heard other such arguments over my headset as I play Gears. I have heard somethings funny, some things disturbing.

I have heard the Wife vow divorce if he didn’t stop playing right now. The papers were filled last Monday.

We have turned into a support group. We give our sympathy and then we rip him for being a wee little man that cannot control his house. No one wants to lose a player in a game. We find that good old fashioned peer pressure keeps the game intact and destroys marriages. The alien horde does not wait for a T.V. timeout and neither do we.

The Wife may never understand. That is something that we may have to get used to. She may never come to accept the loneliness that comes from being married to an Xboxer. She will try to compromise, she will try become involved. But this will never change the fact that when we say “I’m almost done and will be done in a sec” really means that “I am trying to ignore you and hopefully you will forget that I am up here.”

Soon she gives up. She becomes content as we lay against her at night and use her legs to prop us up so that we can see the T.V. better. She accepts that we will have half conversations that will be interrupted by an expletitve as we lose a vital position in the Xbox game. She accepts that she has become an Xbox Widow and may have to raise the child on her own.

The Wife, our inspiration and our obstacle, may still fight on to get us out of the xbox world. She may actually encourage us to watch more sports and less Xbox. But we are a cult, the converted. We are doomed, and we know it.

At 3:00am, on a Tuesday, the game continues. The Wife is laying beside all the husbands that have fallen down the crevice. A voice erupts from my headset:

“Tommy! What are you doing up, you have school tomorrow!”

“Mom! I’m almost done, let me finish!”

“You get your butt in bed right now!”

“Hold on! I’m almost……………………”

Then silence. We have discovered a bigger scourge than The Wife. The Mom’s powers trump all and our hearts go out to the 13 year old Xbox recruit.

He would have made a fine Xbox man as we take a moment to ridicule him. God speed, young man, God speed.

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