(Topic ID: 253412)

"You have too many Pinball machines to have a life, Dad"


5 months ago

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  • Latest reply 42 days ago by whitey
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    #1 5 months ago

    My 19-year-old Son is home from college this weekend. We start talking about his on and off-campus experiences to date. Alot of stories, and he's adjusting just fine.

    Conversation shifts to me, stating I've always been more of a "work then home" kind of guy. I tell him about some of my latest pinball adventures. He then utters the above statement.

    Wouldn't give much thought to it normally, but did get me thinking:

    a) I've brought up my gameroom to colleagues at work, and have received "cool, but seems like a lonely hobby" comment from more than one person.
    b) Given these things are in my house, there's not much desire or need to venture out.
    c) I get leagues, tourneys, and pockets of us that get together to enjoy the machines. But honestly, I can have the most fun playing it alone, as it's ultimately a "you against the machine" experience. You don't really have to engage with anyone to have a good time on these things.
    d) Lost my Wife of 21 years to a long battle w cancer a year ago August. First time I've ever brought it up here, and not interested in (nor want) sympathy. I now get this constant barrage of "advice" to get out, socialize, and don't be too secluded. Not something that is received well on my end currently, as I never did it much prior.
    e) The pins always brought me a great escape from the normal day to day stress and pressures of "real" life. Now, it provides a different type of escape, and sometimes the only thing that can bring a consistent smile to my face. I view that as a positive (?)

    There are other adventures I'm looking at which appeal to me, but giving up the silver ball is not something that I'm willing to do (yet).

    I guess I'm not sure what I'm asking, except his very simple sentence struck a cord with me.

    "Too much of a good thing" is the only phrase that kind of aligns.....

    #16 5 months ago

    Great input......I think "having a life" at 19, vs 60 are defined quite differently....hence my son's remark. Guess I was lucky to get a full sentence out of him...this one just made me think.

    Having a business that interacts with a large healthcare system, along with running a youth soccer club, 4 kids, 3 grandkids....more than enough to call a "life" I believe......

    Interacting daily is part of my job (more on analytical/ executive level) and the hours are long. There could not be a better hobby for me than pinball.

    Added "Pinball Geek" to my "A/V Geek" personal description a long time ago.

    Being introverted and ocd is just sort of who I've always been and a perfect fit for pinball. Now alone, but certainly not lonely (despise crowds actually).

    I'll take a box of lights in the comfort of my home anyday over pretending to care about mindless chatter in public gatherings. Decompression from work and life for a bit...is what it is I guess.....

    #37 5 months ago
    Quoted from PoMC:

    I don’t know you, probably none of us here knows you.
    Your son knows you.
    Probably should be having this conversation with your son and not fellow pinheads.

    Thread's intent was simply to share with others in the hobby (as most on here are) an interesting take on "life/ pinball" perspective from my Son. I've enjoyed reading these responses.

    #41 5 months ago
    Quoted from AUKraut:

    Sounds like your son doesn't want you to be without a female companion to spend the rest of your years with.....probably hard for him to say that directly!

    Suspect he's curious for sure. At his point in life....probably obsessed w being part of a group or getting a girlfriend. So my "life" doesn't make sense to him.

    Those will be the conversations I'll have with him (and his sisters), not Pinside, if that ever happens.

    I just found the "too many pins = no life" analogy something that would be interesting to throw out to the group....

    #42 5 months ago
    Quoted from LTG:

    Tell your son. You enjoy them. They bring you happiness. And they didn't cost you a dime. They came out of his inheritance.
    LTG : )

    Lloyd always has wisdom and perspective.....too funny!!!

    #45 5 months ago
    Quoted from pinballinreno:

    Anyone in retail/service has a different view of socializing especially after dealing with the masses for 40 years or more...
    I hate the masses, but I love people!
    Very difficult situation.
    I absolutely love my home and games. It's an oasis of calm at the end of each day.

    Pretty much my take on things....I think Greg nailed the introvert aspect...I can talk to anyone, just not peeling back the layers. Pinball in my gameroom provides the recluse required.

    Added 166 days ago:

    "recluse" = no, insert - "peace"....odd word choices in this post....

    #50 5 months ago
    Quoted from jwilson:

    You should tell him the machines allow up to four players and ask him to join you.
    Pinball actually makes me socialize MORE. I could easily buy a console and play games in my basement and never see another human being. I can also play all my games at home. But instead, I go to league or to hang out at the pinball bar. Or occasionally, have people over to play!
    I see no problem here, you’re as social as you want.

    We actually hit a few games of FGY after chatting a bit. It was a reflective moment for me....all light-hearted...

    I'm ok w just being me...my days of trying to impress others left a long time ago (not sure I've ever done that consistently.... )

    #53 5 months ago
    Quoted from FlippinJimmy:

    This thread has me considering going to the next pinball expo or event so I can meet some of the people who post on Pinside.

    Been to Expo, WILL be at TPF next go around!!!

    #57 5 months ago
    Quoted from KingBW:

    Several comments here mention the word "escape". I can relate and that's the reason that we called our basement game room "The Escape Room". Several reasons for the needed distraction/escape. But … we've also taken in as much of the pinball "underground" experience as we could. We go to 4-5 shows a year for the last 4 years, been to the Stern factory tour twice, and a private JJP tour with Jack, 4 "pinventure" trips to fetch some HUO pins, joined a league for the last few years and been in a couple of tournaments and launch parties. However, when we come home, we look at our own collection and "it's home" and our comfort zone. We've had a few parties with friends and relatives, some of which think we are a little crazy, but yet some of them are starting to catch the bug too.
    To wrap this up, I think we are going to start to throttle back with some of the shows. We don't regret going and have fun, but our home collection entertains us plenty. I "get" the op's thinking. Been there, done that. Escape room it is.[quoted image]

    I have now officially renamed my room!!! Have received some very cool and thoughtful PM's...really just had a shareable moment to post..... I suspect many have experienced or thought about in one way or another...

    4 months later
    #60 42 days ago
    Quoted from holminone:

    It’s a really interesting and good question. The reality in my opinion is this. If your kid notices enough to say something it’s more true than not. For me in matters such as this I think about my legacy in the eyes of my children. Are you the guy that never made an effort to branch out and experience new things or are you the guy that was defined by Pinball? For me, the fact that kid perceives you are out of balance makes pinball a negative for him. For that reason alone I would try to venture out and find some new balance. Because the story I want my kids to tell is, “My dad was really cool. He got into working out, eating well and going to (Fill in blank) later in life. And he also had this really amazing Pinball collection that he was passionate about but it didn’t define him. He was a really cool dude.”
    To me this is the crux of the thing. For me personally Pinball does not define me. I happen to be a guy that has a couple of pinball machines but I don’t go to leagues I don’t talk about them but I do like to fire them up and play the heck out of them, and I like the way to look at my house. And I like to maintain them.
    But I also have a collection of mountain bikes, I play competitive golf, love animals, read, War god on Zelda BOTW (switch) and I love supply chain. I also coach high school golf.
    Net is this. Create the perception in your child that there is more to you than pinball. Cause right now, he sees you out of wack.

    Resurrected thread...when you own a company, run a nfp youth soccer club,raise 4 kids, devote almost a quarter century to a wife who passed early, etc. I'll have plenty of legacy.

    I think he's 18, no mother, and will occasionally just say things that can be interpreted as hurtful. He means well, but too young to grasp how I deal w the day to day ( everyone's different). Always listen, then realize the situation.

    I'll just be doing me, as that's all any of us really can do. Pinball is my hobby of choice, but doesn't define who I am. No harm I can see. Thanks for your thoughts, but hate golf (lol)

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