Just a little more to the left…

Tuesday, January 6, 2004

7-year-old gets stuck in stuffed animal game machine

This story just tickles me, probably because I used to play these machines pretty religiously. In high school and college, that was my favorite game at the arcade. Not for the prizes — sometimes you’d get a Looney Tunes character, but most of the stuffed animals were just lame — but for the skill required to win. You have to have an eye for it. You have to identify a good target — something that is loose, where you can get the claw around its center-of-gravity. Then, as you line up the claw, you have to check it from several angles to be sure you have the claw in the right place. And, don’t release the claw too early — if it’s swinging too much, it won’t land right.

Remember the crane game scene in Toy Story? If you’ve never played a crane, let me tell you, that scene was highly inaccurate. Oh, sure, the toys inside really do worship the crane as if it were a God, but did you notice the grip that thing had? No claw has that kind of grip.

Like I said, I played those games a lot.

Needless to say, if I had been there, the kid wouldn’t have been stuck for an hour…