Sunday, May 28, 2006

Sim Life

As I am about to be unemployed, I've been thinking about the ways that I would spend my time if I could. Although it has drifted down my list to #3, following gardening and blogging, playing the sims is still one of my preferred leisure activities.

The sims is all about control and wish fulfillment. If you have a crush on someone, you make your sim and their sim. Soon, they will fall in love and get married. If you hate someone, you can make their sim, not pay the bills and watch as they fall into despair as everything they own is slowly repossessed. You can redecorate and buy beautiful furniture for your sims, spend hours shopping online for new clothes and hairstyles, even when you, yourself, are broke. My sim drives a barbie pink classic VW beetle, my lifetime dream.

Sometimes I wonder if the Sims appeals primarily to writers, or at least in a different, more direct and obsessive way to writers, as I have known many of us with more than just a passing familiarity with this game. I think it speaks to our need to order and control the world and its presentation to the general public. But seriously, dude, I could play this game for 48 hours without getting up to pee. Back in my MFA days, lazy weekend days like today were spent shopping for and playing the sims from about 12 in the afternoon (when I woke up, naturally) to 10 at night (time to go to the bar). There were times when I encountered people for the first time after 2 days of playing and I felt like I should be clicking on them and choosing "Share Interests" instead of just saying hey.

My love for the sims has not waned over the years. I'll still paypal a site up to 6 dollars for the greatest hair I've ever seen. I buy each expansion pack within a week of its release. I expect that, someday, my sim will have to trade in her beetle for a station wagon, and she'll have a toddler on her hip, but I'll still be playing, dammit.

1 comment:

Kim said...

Sadly, my boyfriend has taken over my Sim computer and uses it to play Civilization IV, so I am relegated to simply remembering my Sims as they once were. My best Sim neighborhood was simply a gathering of every single person I ever considered a friend, living in randomly selected pairs in houses. The best was when Sim Dave started making it with Sim Mrs. Langford, High School Sim Math Teacher. They would be surprisingly compatible in real life.