Well let me preface this post by saying I played a lot of NBA Live 05' in college. And in playing this game I developed several go-to-guys whom I turned into video game all-stars. Now I would pick the most awkward and least athletic players(typically decided on whiteness and overall comedy in their headshot) and turn them into an MVP. I made my mark with players like Pat Garrity, Mark Madsen, and Evan Eschmeyer...Tremendously white players, with an undeniable lack of athleticism, ball skills, and overall ability(no offense..but yeah). Now this is all well and good and I assume most people do these types of things in sports games...develop a kinship and bond with an all together waste of in-game ratings in the disguise of an athlete.
Now my all-time favorite instance of this MVP transformation was in the xbox body of 6'10",240lb Benjamin Handlogten. Who I'm sure is a household name in all of America. Now 'Big Ben Handles' as I often ironically called him, was a career 4.3 ppg and 3.2 rpg(obviously a perennial all-star)player who entered the league at the ripe age of 30! Now even though Ben 'I can handle everything' Logten only managed a dynamic two years in the league he clearly made a big enough impact to be placed in the 2005 version of NBA Live. Ben 'I log stats in variables of ten' Handlogten had an overall rating of 37(out of 100). This was a clear sign that he would be just player I needed to dominate the league. So, long story short, I managed to claim the NBA MVP trophy for Benjamin 'all i log is victories and my handles are in the form of love' Handlogten while averaging a crisp 17points,12boards,9assists,5steals and 3blocks a game(and yes it was in all-star difficulty). Needless to say their was much rejoicing and I paraded around Madison, WI on state street, screaming at the top of my lungs that Ben Handlogten was the mvp!! "MVP, MVP!!!" I crooned. I had done it. After the dust settled and the ticker tape was cleared from the streets I had time to reflect on my victory. And in doing so I had an epiphany "Hey maybe Ben 'Im a 30 year old rookie' Handlogten is on Facebook!! And lo and behold there he was! A dapper 41 year old married man with three beautiful children. So i went ahead and friend requested him. And then the waiting began. I waited day and night by my email inbox for a full year and a half for my simple request to be accepted. And for a year and a half i was disappointed, it was like waiting for your college confirmation letter from your dream school. And day after day i gradually fell into a deep dark hole of hopelessness. "Doesnt Ben know that I just won him the MVP trophy? Doesnt he appreciate all the hard work and dedication that went into achieving that goal?"... I was crushed, I was ready to give up.......Which brings me to Saturday afternoon, May 1st,2010, 3:45pm. The best 'ding' my email inbox has ever experienced. A full year and a half later, Benjamin 'Im just a family man now, my days of averaging 4 points a game and dunking on shaq are over' Handlogten had confirmed my friendship!! I was ecstatic, my eyes welled up, I called my grandma, I kissed nearby babies, and again I paraded the streets(this time downtown minneapolis) shrieking "Im friends with Ben Handlogten!! Suck It Doubters!", My life had just been filled with hope and purpose again. I was whole, and there was nothing that could stand in the way of my happiness and success. Ben Handlogten had given me the gift of life and I was forever grateful..
So kiddies, the moral of this story is: never give up, never lose hope, and always chase your dreams. My dream, was to become facebook friends with Ben Handlogten. And I accomplished that dream. It took many days of non stop xbox, sleep deprivation, and many many many tear-filled nights..but I DID IT. I DID IT.
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