Monday, August 22, 2005

Great moments in human achievement

Prepare to be jealous.

These days, people often say that kids play too many video games and they’ll never accomplish anything.

I don’t know if that’s true or not, but I do know that playing video games led me to one of my most prized accomplishments.

And no, it wasn’t attention from the opposite sex.

Gaze upon my works, ye mighty, and despair: I earned the coveted (I can never find it on eBay) Seaquest Sub Club patch.

Unlike other Sub Clubs that require you to buy sandwiches (or buy black market stamps on the Internet) before you get a payoff, the Seaquest Sub Club had only one requirement.

Attain a score of 50,000 points or more playing Seaquest on your Atari 2600 and take a picture of it. Send in the pic, and “you'll be eligible to join this prestigious organization.”

Here’s the

This is from April 1983. Stop laughing at my glasses. There weren’t many options for frames back then.

Note that not only had I scored the requisite 50,000 points, but I had reached just over 112,000. Not bad for an 8-year-old.

After weeks of waiting, I got my patch in the mail, which I dutifully had affixed to my favorite blue and gray jacket. I’d like to think that I wore the jacket to school and downplayed my achievement.

“Oh, this old thing? I got it when I was a kid.”

But I know I was probably more like: “Check it out! Sub Club! I rule!”

Eventually, I outgrew the jacket and handed it down to my cousins. And it wasn’t until a few years ago I even thought of it.

“Fifty bucks for a patch? No way, eBay!”

I mean, I’m good at justifying entirely impractical, nay, even stupid purchases. I paid five bucks for an old multicolored light you used to shine on aluminum Christmas tree even though

A. It was nowhere near Christmas


B. I didn’t own an aluminum Christmas tree.

But I couldn’t justify dropping 50 clams on a patch that I wouldn’t even wear in public (OK, I probably would).

As a lark, I asked my aunt if she still had the jacket I handed down to her sons. Luckily for me, she still did. That meant 50 bucks for important stuff. Like groceries. Or a Darth Vader Voice-Changing Helmet.

I also reclaimed some other cool stuff, like the Fisher-Price Movie Player and Talk-To-Me Books. Second childhood, here I come.

Anyway, here’s the jacket and patch, modeled by the ever-dashing Brody.

No, Brody, arms out. Try again.

There we go. Good job!

Now I want to get a cool Greatest American Hero T-shirt like I used to have. Talk about sweet…


  1. I think my brother had those same exact glasses!!

  2. My condolences.


  3. Brody looks tooooo cute!! Congrats on reclaiming your patch - lol!