The Game of Life

After moving to Canada and finding much frustration with the entire immigration situation as it merged with my school life and social (or lack thereof) life, there was a very short and focused period of time where I spent my days playing games and interacting with as little people as possible.

Quite probably everyone has seen the stereotype illustrated in comics or in movies: A person living completely disconnected from the real world and instead living through some sort of character in an MMO. No longer a part of this world, the person only maintains their online appearance while letting their life fall apart.

Well, I was not that far off to be honest, but I did spend more time online playing games than I did interacting with real humans. At the beginning this came from my lack of willingness to go outside during winter, and almost evolved into me sitting down in front of my screen a good 20 hours a day. I would log into my favorite Korean MMO and then play for hours and hours and hours. First on one account, and once some of my friends came online, I would switch to other accounts to meet them.

It was a fun time, and a moment in my life where I thought I was exploring new depths of social interaction.

One day I woke up and was getting ready to play that one game with a friend, and for some reason I locked myself out of my account and could not go in. I could have emailed customer support for some time until everything was figured out, but instead I decided to hop on my mountain bike and see how far I could go before I really needed to turn back. This was somewhere in March and there was snow everywhere.

Going outside after many months inside felt silly: Suddenly there were so many dimensions to life, though everything else was pretty much the same. There were people everywhere to whom I could talk for any reason, and some of them even interacted to sell goods for money. Eventually my silliness ended in a patch of snow that was almost as long as either of my tibia. A space with so much snow that I needed to crawl out of it. Heading home I figured that I really wanted to go out for a walk to take some pictures, and so I did.

The end of my greatest hobby opened the gate for what became my three main hobbies: Gaming while actually having fun, photography, and bicycle riding — and it all happened out of the blue for no particular reason.

Something that stuck with me after all of those changes took place ever so suddenly was how my brain was trying to adapt my real life objectives to a priority scale like one would find in a quest-based videogame. Critical quests take priority while side quests can be ignored or left for later.

Life is a big quest that needs to be done. Every quest has its own degree of importance, and each quest will give you something new to use for the rest of the journey.

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