Today, you are a member of… Tennis Anyone?
Love ’em or hate ’em, video games have a history. And that history is every bit as noteworthy as its most necessary element, electricity. Both are mediums with the bit of message schizophrenia: Electricity is as much about better ways to shoot your enemy as it is about playing baseball at night. And video games simulate missle strikes as brilliantly as tic-tac-toe. Take Tennis for Two, built by a nuclear non-proliferation activist and physicist, William Higinbotham. The game was a real step up from the giganitic NIMROD computer or the vapidly static Noughts and Crosses, with its the mesmerizing pong-like action made even more irresistable because it uses an Oscilloscope for the graphic imaging. It’s also a perfect example of relaxation for war-like reasons: Higinbotham designed it as a way to wow visitors to the Brookhaven National Laboratory, a place that screams Dr. Strangelove. And therein likes the crux of this week, members: that between fighting and leisure. It’s no less a tale of what swirls in the creative madness of the modern soul and hides in the riddle behind the bombshell statement: “A girl with brains ought to do something with them besides think.”