Every time i see my mother she has a plastic bag for me, without fail. It always contains a potpourri potentially exploding with tissues, snack bars, cds, mail i’m still receiving at home, household items i probably won’t ever make practical use of, and any special requests i had from home. On Friday when i slid into the back seat of our car while in mid-sentence of bitching about the length of my day and not quite remembering how to tie a tie and not really being able to do anything spectacular with my hair i noticed that the normally expected plastic bag had two familiar long boxes in it, and that’s when i remember that i had asked my mother to bring my Magic Cards with her.
As a frame of reference for this you should know about my first and last experience with Magic. The latter was in Boston where Rabi‘s brother had a deck of 7th Edition cards and i played him in two games at the kitchen table while Rabi idly surfed the internet The former was at my first year as counselor in training at the good day camp, where i watched one of my camper’s older brothers play his friend in what had to be Unlimited edition. So, now that i’ve established those two floating points in space, let’s look at what’s within.
Going from seventh grade to eight grade i really didn’t have very much of anything in my life. I wasn’t especially tight with anyone from Masterman yet, and i only had Monica left over from grade school; i had no life after i got back from camp every day. That was way before I had a website, let alone a computer, and I’m honestly not sure what I did with my free time. My only hobby at that point was … um… i want to say that it was some RPG on Super Nintendo, but i think it might have actually been masturbation. We’ll just let that one lie. Anyhow, point being that Magic excited me… it was like keeping my entire army of GI Joes on tiny shufflable cards and being able to wage war against other people’s collections. I made haste in pestering my mom to buy me some cards as soon as 3rd edition saw wide release, and by Christmas of 8th grade i really did have my veritable personal army which soon included two nearly infallible decks.
The thing about infallible armies is that, no matter how infallible you claim them to be, you’ve eventually got to pit them against another army to see whether they’ll fail or not. And, being the introvert that i was, i wasn’t exactly heading out to comic shops to play other people on gaming nights. My foes were just classmates who randomly got hooked on the game, and they played by all sorts of non-conforming rules on slimy lunch-tables that my cards wouldn’t be caught dead on. So, i just kept buying cards in a vacuum, without any practical use for them. I finally stopped at Ice Age and 4th Edition, because i felt like nothing i really wanted or needed was coming out anymore. The cards went into boxes, the boxes went onto my bookshelf, and with mostly no interruption that’s where they stayed for the entirety of highschool.
And now they’re back, spread out on my floor in a fabulous array of five colors and the names of Anson Maddocks and Melissa Benson calling me back to a hobby meant for multiple partners that I somehow made just as self-contained as masturbation. As a spectacular example of an only child, I suppose that everything I did was like social masturbation, and so now all I’ve really got going for me is that I’m really good at interacting with myself and that hardly anyone else does it the way I can do it.
But, anyway, all I meant to say is that I’ve been playing Magic all night, and that I have to remember to send some cards to Rabi’s brother later this week.