The Professional Gamer - June 17, 2019

Happy (belated) Father’s Day to all the dads out there. If you’re reading this post, I’m going to assume that you spent most of the day enjoying some video games with the kiddos. If not, I hope you found a way to enjoy the day in your own style. My only “child” is of the fuzzy variety, so I spent my day with my dad, father-in-law, and grandpa. During the rest of the week, I split my time up between Star Trek, Run with the Wind, and Breath of the Wild. All in all, it’s been a pretty good week, though I am still recovering from that time zone change. Let’s talk about some fun stuff.

I want to talk about one episode of Deep Space Nine that I watched this week: “The Wire”. In this episode, we learn some portion of truth about “plain, simple, Garak”, though the truth is hidden among the lies. It seems that Garak has been using an implant to increase the endorphin levels in his brain, helping him cope with what has become an almost insufferable existence in exile. Unfortunately, the implant is failing and the withdrawal threatens to kill Garak. I really enjoyed Andrew Robinson’s performance in this episode. He did a remarkable job showing what Garak is like when the mask is removed. It also includes one of my favorite exchanges between Garak and Bashir. Garak claims that everything he told the doctor was true. “Even the lies?”. “Especially the lies.” This episode provides a very interesting counter-point to the events of “The Marquis”, where Garak seems willing to do almost anything to get back home, but works against his own people (and his own goal of returning home). In contrast, during a more manic phase of the withdrawal in “The Wire”, Garak goes on a tirade about his exile, from environmental considerations (station too cold and brightly lit) to the disdain that the local populace shows him. And worst of all, the fact that he enjoys his lunch conversations with Bashir. It is still a long time before we get a clear picture of Garak’s internal life and thoughts, but from this point, we know that he is conflicted. Loving and hating both his home planet and his home in exile.

In Run with the Wind, we are in the big buildup to the Hakone Ekiden. And one questions keeps coming up: why do you run? And I’ve realized that I’ve never answered that question for myself. For a long time, I ran mainly as a way to burn calories so that I could eat ice cream every day and still fit into my pants. That is still a part of my reason, because ice cream is delicious, and I have very little self control around the bakery. But I also want to make myself stronger. I want to run faster and longer. But I know that will not depend entirely on my physical strength. I know that running also developes emotional strength; a willingness to endure temporal suffering for hope of achievement afterward. I’ve just turned 36 and had my best showing at the Bolder Boulder of my entire life. I’m a stronger runner now than I was as a teenager, and I’m very proud of myself. I hope I can become stronger still. And that’s what I love about the message of this show. The characters are all looking for their own goals and motivations to keep the faces forward and run. In the end, I think we are all always doing that in life. Glancing back at where we have been and then pushing hard, with all our strength, towards the next peak.

Lastly, I played a little Breath of the Wild. With the announcement of a sequel, I figured I better get in gear if I want to kill Ganon before there is a new game released. I’m rather rusty at play control, but did alright. I gathered enough fire-resistant lizards to make an attempt at the climb up Death Mountain. I was able to complete a couple more shrines and a map tower. And that feels like fairly good progress.

That’s all for this post. Have a great week and game on!