Warp Drive

Monday, May 31, 2021

Nintendo Rhapsody Notes

A place for my unrestrained thoughts and ideas on the subject of current and future Nintendo Rhapsody chapters.

World 0: The Schoolyard Menace (Prequel Chapter)

World 0-1: Terror of Orchard Dale Elementary
When I was three years of age, I attended preschool at the YMCA. I was accompanied by my maternal grandmother. She would often stay with me during the classes. I was already showing signs of an attention deficit. My preschool teacher, Mary Ray, seemed very concerned with my inability to remain still. She also raised concerns about my delayed motor skills. My grandmother also seemed worried. I would be entering elementary school at Orchard Dale soon enough. A possible recipe for disaster.
When thinking back upon Orchard Dale Elementary's computer lab, two words come to mind. Cold and sterile. It was devoid of the usual classroom writing utensils. Occupied instead by thinking machines. Machines that appeared to have one function only. The output of math equations to a monitor.
A few thoughts on my home life while attending Orchard Dale Elementary in 1989. I used to sit in my room listening to The Beach Boys and I would often compose my own music via a toy piano. One of the songs was entitled simply "Doors." It was just a rudimentary series of increasing and decreasing notes, but it was music to my ears at the time. The Atari 2600 Space Invaders portion of the chapter would be themed around Orson Welles' mischievous War of the Worlds radio play from 1938. I also used to play Dragster with my dad on the big oak television set in the living room. All I seem to remember of that game is burning out the race car over and over again.
My parents owned the original wood grain Atari 2600 game console, but when I was two or three years old, I disassembled it piece by piece. I was more than likely curious how the thing worked. Electronics were like magic to me back then. It was replaced by a second generation Atari 2600 in the years that followed. I still have that second generation console in storage to this day.

Atari 2600 Game Collection

Thursday, January 28, 2021

My First Reading Tutor

I came into this life a destructive force of nature. I was, in my own way, ever curious about the world around me. I just failed to show it in an appropriate manner. Being the slow learner that I was, I would often paint my own version of reality based upon my then limited comprehension.

Needless to say, I learned a lot from the school system, but much of it took place outside the classroom; on the playgrounds, in the lunch rooms, in the offices. It was the people, not the curriculum, that truly mattered. I came to the realization that I was not alone. There were students with far worse disabilities than my own, and there were staff members that legitimately cared for each and every one of them.

It was a treasure trove of experiences, and at the end of the day, it matters not if they were good or bad ones. All that remains to be seen is whether or not something was learned from them. Life, itself, is an institution for learning. The ultimate school system. We pass on what we learn, and what we pass on gives others reason to learn.

Diane Stepnitz