Nostalgia in the Pacific Northwest

While visiting friends in Washington two weeks ago, we stopped by Sprinkles, an ice cream shop decorated in nostalgia. Sitting along one wall of the store were the monoliths of my childhood:

Video games.

I spend many hours and many thousands of dollars playing Defender, Pole Position, Pac Man, and many, many others. There was a time in high school when my friends and I would vacation in Weirs Beach, New Hampshire simply because of the quality of the Half Moon Arcade and Fun Spot.

I like to think that there was something special about those coin-operated video games. By having to pay 25 cents to play, the stakes were higher on those games, and thus, the gaming sessions more important and more memorable.

In later years, I spent an enormous amount of time playing computer-based games like Warcraft, Diablo, and Madden, and it was unquestionably fun. But those days in the arcade - when every game required a financial investment- those were very special indeed.

On the flip side, Sprinkles was also selling candy cigarettes, which struck me as an incredibly stupid idea. While nostalgia is something I adore, there are certain items of nostalgia that should never be brought back into today’s world.

“Irish Need Not Apply” signs
Mercury thermometers
Leaded gas
Segregated drinking fountains
The General Lee from The Dukes of Hazard
The Macarena
Lawn darts
Birth of a Nation

Candy cigarettes belong on that list.

What the hell are you thinking, Sprinkles?