Friday, April 25, 2003

Did you play any of those early role-playing-type computer games? My high school friend Minda had a wizard-themed one. Through text and simple line drawings of passages, rooms, stairs, and doorways we would navigate characters through a maze and conquer goblins, or whatever.

Navigating the halls of the middle school near the mall reminds me of our early struggles to get oriented in that game. There are no windows. The vistas all seem as alike as amber lines on a tiny black screen. “I know I’ve seen these stairs before, but is that good or bad? Am I headed towards the teachers’ lounge or that dead end that I keep choosing?”

The building wants to communicate to me, with its halls tiled different colors, and letters and numbers prominently painted above the tile. Yet somehow the muted tones and identical cross halls all read the same to me.

Speaking of reading, a learned friend loaned me The Gospel According to The Simpsons. I believe I read an excerpt or summary on the web. Author Mark Pinsky argues that we see the Simpson family in church and using their faith to get through problems much, much more often than pretty much any other TV characters. As I read, I have been surprised and delighted to find that even when I know the line, the scene that must be coming, I chuckle at old favorites, like pork-and-mayo laden sandwich at Izzy’s Deli named for Krsuty. Take a look at it sometime.

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