22 February 2010
I met my wife while I was tending bar at a dive in Baltimore. We had live rockabilly music on Thursday nights. Other than that, the place limped along on a thriving KENO business and the hipster drunks I was able to attract on most nights. My wife would be uncomfortable walking into a TGIFridays by herself. The fact that she walked into this joint on her own was one of many signs that let me know she was the one for me. She was to meet a friend of hers there but her friend was late.
She sat at the bar and I fell in love.
A few months later I moved into her Charles Village apartment. On my first night I brought a bottle of Makers Mark and my Xbox.
She should have known what she was getting into, but she stuck with me anyway.
She worked with special needs ESL families during the day and I made cocktails all night. I'd wake up late, have a little coffee, walk the dog and then come home and take the Baltimore Ravens to the Super Bowl over and over again on Microsoft's launch football title.
Anyone who knows anything about football and football games knows NFL Fever was no Madden. But it's no NFL Blitz either. The game was deep enough to not feel like an arcade button masher and accessible enough for folks who don't have playbooks memorized.
Which means it was perfect for me.
Monday nights at the bar were always slow, so we decided to start showing movies on the half-dozen TV screens that hung above the bar. I used the Xbox since we had no DVD player there. When everyone left for last call I'd pop in NFL Fever and the cook and I would play a few games. He wasn't much of a sports gamer and neither was I.
But no one looking at those TVs would have known any better.
By Victor Paul Alvarez