Dad. Me. Pinball

By dstickler

June 13, 2020

1 year ago

At the time of writing this I am in my early 30's and I own a few Pinball Machines. But WHY?

My love and enjoyment for Pinball started as a kid growing up in a city where Pinball Machines seemed limited. Most of our local arcades had the standard arcade machines, TMNT, NBA JAM, MORTAL KOMBAT, etc. or token grab plush toy winning games, but not Pinball Machines. For this reason, I felt almost more drawn to them. Anytime my father and I were out for lunch, dinner or even just taking in a game of Putt Putt (Miniature Golf) and we came across a Pinball Machine, we would instantly stop and play. I can remember watching as he would reach into his pockets and I would just hope to see a handful of coins. Any quarters he pulled from those pocket became like gold. As he handed off the coins I would rush over and jump on the first pinball machine I could find. It never really mattered the machine, to us every machine was equally as great as another. Even today, when I go back to my hometown we still can't help but get caught up in playing pinball machines while we are out. It still does not matter the game, because it is and has always been about the time together. Pinball gave a father, who didn’t have the most money in the world, the ability for even just a few hours to be a king in the arcade and being the coolest person in the world to his son. 

Now that I am older and I live further from my father, I knew I always wanted to have a Pinball Machine in my house so when he comes to visit, we would be able to play anytime we wanted. My first Pinball Machine in my collection was one of my favorites as kid and one my father and I played often, Jurassic Park (Data East). Even now the excitement is still felt when the iconic music plays and of course when the T-Rex eats the Pinball. But the true excitement is when my father comes to visit... The first thing he does after getting settled in is go downstairs and fire up Jurassic Park. If he wakes up before me then that means I am going to be woken up by the sounds of the pinball machine or the sounds of his frustration in not reaching a high enough score to get his initials on the game. For me, this brings me great joy, seeing my Dad now become the Kid and me becoming the one with the gold (quarters) in my pocket. 

Thank you to Pinball for allowing a father and son a chance to have these forever moments and thank you dad for somehow always having a few quarters in your pocket. 

Story photos

No photos are attached to this story.


1 year ago

Great read!

1 year ago

I love this story! I hope my son will someday look back at something we did like this. He has always known our house to be filled with pinball. At 16, he hardly plays anymore. But ... someday I'm sure he'll look back and remember all the times we played together in our house, and especially when we were out in public. Nice story - very humble - love it!

Add a comment

Wanna make a comment? Click here to sign in or register.