Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Stuff (No Longer) In My Drawers Day

I finally got down to business on the oft-delayed task of cleaning out the crawlspace under the stairs, with the reasoning that we'll have kids in the next twenty years or so and we have a huge shortage of bedrooms, so the youngest will probably have to channel Harry Potter for living space.

This time around, I actually designated things for the nearest garbage bin, including the millions, if not billions, of old computer games, manuals, and game box trinkets that I kept around purely for useless nostalgia -- although it's tough to throw them out, am I ever actually going to buy a computer with a 5 1/4" floppy drive to play them again?


This is all that is left of my my nearly-British empire of Legos. I specialized in town construction with a minor in pirates, so it's a wonder I didn't go into urban planning or Somalia.

I guess this educational toy worked -- or at the very least, got me the A in that Electrical Engineering crossover class with the box full of wires. Your career in chemistry can begin when you open the box twenty-five years later to find that there are still 6 AA batteries in various states of decomposition.


When I started running out of shelf space on the two designated game shelves in my parents' house as a kid, I started consolidating some of the packaging. For most games, I tore off the front cover which doubled as the manual, although I kept the Zork trilogy intact for some reason. Maybe I thought they'd be worth something someday, even though Cindy the cat peed on all the maps.


"Time" and "America's Past" were easily the best Carmen Sandiego games because the clues actually mapped directly to text in the reference books. In contrast, trying to using the Fodor guidebook in "Where in Europe Is Carmen Sandiego?" required you to read an entire section and understand it. Reading comprehension does not belong in educational software!


Here's a smattering of disks that were thrown out. I was probably the only person in the world who bought the game, Freddy Pharkas: Frontier Pharmacist.

This puzzle game was maddeningly difficult and impossible to solve without also buying the $14.95 hint book (excellent business model, by the way). Many of the puzzles had to be done by brute force. One "fill-in-the-blank" puzzle actually required you to cheat by moving the cursor to a hidden part of the screen where the answer was. Very meta.

This is only half of the clutter I sorted through -- stay tuned for future insights into my trash!

Popular Kauai swimming hole gains deadly reputation
Thieves steal 21 tons of mustard and ketchup
Live mannequins in Milan shop window anger union

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