People are looking for the real you

Caitlin Brown

“So Gavin, does playing guitar help you play Guitar Hero?” my boyfriend asked my brother while the latter was, in fact, playing Guitar Hero.

My brother answered that “Yeah, it kinda does,” and I heard my dad chuckle from the other room.

My dad came out of the den into the room where we were. “Now, I think that’s funny,” he said, still laughing a little. “Because if I had been the one asking, I would have asked it the other way around – it never would have occurred to me to assume that you would want the real thing to help you with the game. Guess it’s just the generation gap.”

And maybe it is. Try to think of what you would have asked in that situation, if it had occurred to you to ask it. It could be that my boyfriend posed the question in that particular way because he knew we had just gotten Guitar Hero for Christmas and it was what Gavin was playing right then. Maybe he wanted the question to relate to the current moment. Or maybe it does have to do with whether you’re 20 versus 46.

What does this say about our generation? We would rather entertain ourselves by competing virtually than adding something to the world through tangible music? Does it say that more people would rather brag about how sweet they are in guitar battles than how good the real ax sounds when they strum it?

Congratulations to those of you who are reading this and mentally separating the two – the world of reality and that of fiction. There’s nothing wrong with de-stressing via video game therapy. We’re all familiar with it. I mean, I love a good run-through of “School’s Out” on medium. I’m not trying to say that instead of playing Guitar Hero you should necessarily be improving someone else’s life through “real music” – no, not at all.

But hopefully most of us can realize this isn’t high school anymore. Maybe someone may care about your highest percentage or how many stars you got, but what most of the people you encounter will be looking for is the real you. If you are best exemplified by your Guitar Hero prowess, by all means, that’s great.

But remember that, in the end, just because you had the most successful tour anyone can remember, or you can play every song perfectly on expert, the only way to be a guitar hero is to actually become one.

Caitlin Brown is a freshman nursing major and a columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected].