Life is like…an adventure game

There’s a series of adventure games I used to play when I was younger called Monkey Island.  One of my favorites was the third in the series – The Curse of Monkey Island.  The main character is a young pirate with the amazingly ridiculous name of Guybrush Threepwood.  He runs into various sorts of problems which you spend the game sorting through.

My everyday life often reminds me of this game.  Problems, puzzles in the game, are stacked. 

Game Problem: Your fiancee has turned into a gold statue because of a cursed ring you accidentally gave her.  You have to go to a different island to get a different ring to remove the curse.  But first you have to get a ship, a crew, and a map.  But first you have to convince possible crew members to come with you.  In order to do that, you first have to prove to one of them you can find gold.  So first you have to do that…..

Real Life Problem: Not dying.  So you need food, so you need money to buy food, so you need a job to get money, so you need a car to get to your job.  But your car’s been totaled.  So you need to get a new one, for which you need a photo ID and proof of insurance.  But you’ve lost your wallet.  So you need to get a replacement driver’s license, so you need to print out the form online to fill out and mail in with a check….

In the game, these sort of stacked problems are fun.  In real life, they feel closer to home and just make me stressed out.  I’ve also noticed that in the game, I’m more willing to try ridiculous stuff just for fun.  I’ll make Guybrush say the most ridiculous stuff I can to other characters, just to see what will happen and how they’ll react, because it’s funny.  In real life, I’ll play it as safe as I can out of fear of what will happen and how others will react to me.  It’s not nearly as funny to me in real life when people get upset as it is in the game.  So what’s the difference?  Why do I feel so hurt by others’ reactions in real life, but find it funny in the game?

Another question that comes to mind is that of control.  In the game, you choose who Guybrush talks to, and you can choose from a list of things to make him say.  In real life, where do the options of what to say come from?  How is it decided what I do and where I go?  Is it more like watching a game being played?….which you can do here…..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1IBUfXq0nbk

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Neuroscience and doership

I kept running into Patrick Haggard’s name related to neurological studies having to do with doership.  Found this video of a talk of his:

http://forum-network.org/lecture/neuroscience-human-will