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Date Night: The Arcade

by Megan

Last night my husband took me out on a date. He told me to choose a place to go, so naturally I looked up bowling alleys. That’s natural, right? Anyway, we did go to the bowling alley, but instead of bowling we played in the arcade. I know, I am a teenage boy.

They have a special on Wednesday nights where you get $20 of play for $10, so that’s what we did. We were being really stingy with our “credits” at first, until we thought we were out, and we had the worker check our card and we still had 69 credits left! Then we went all balls-to-the-wall and played everything we wanted!

Let me back up a little bit for those of you who haven’t been in an arcade since the 90s. They do not do tokens and tickets anymore (at least not this one)! Oh no. They have upgraded to the digital age, and now you get a reloadable card that you swipe at every machine. Gone are the days of standing by your game while your friend tracks down a worker to come and fix the dang ticket machine and get you your dang tickets!

After standing at the skee ball machines for a few moments, we figured out that we were supposed to swipe our card in order to play. Clearly we have not been in an arcade this decade millennium. Ironically the arcade was playing 90s music the whole time we were there, but it really enhanced the “arcade mood.”

Once we got all the technology figured out, we had SO MUCH FUN.

We were about even at skee ball. I won two out of three games, but Daniel had the high score. I schooled him at air hockey (7-1, 7-1, and 7-4), and giant digital whack-a-light (like whack-a-mole, but with lights!).

I was also super pleased when I beat him at giant digital connect four. I even did pretty well at basketball and football, but he took the high scores on those games.

Then it was time to cash in our “tickets.” I think now would be an appropriate time to share the story about our toaster.

You see, when we were working in the New England theme park industry, each summer we got these passes that gained us free entry into several other parks in the area. A few arcades were included on the list, but since they were free entry anyway, the passes got us each $20 worth of tokens. Well, we used those each summer and saved up all of our tickets, and after our third summer, we counted them up. We had…a lot.

No I don’t have a photo of us cashing in our tickets, but I do have this one of the adorable Farmer Funtown.

So we went to the arcade and looked around. By this time, we were already engaged and in the midst of wedding planning, registering, etc. Well, the arcade had a toaster for 4000 tickets. We still think it may have been a mistake, because similar-valued items were worth way more tickets. But we had more than 4000 tickets, so we told the worker we wanted a toaster, dang it!

Now this worker…let’s just say he looked like he should be working in an arcade. He had these really thick coke bottle glasses, and he went in the back to look around for the toaster we wanted. He was gone a really long time. At one point he opened the door, stuck his head out, looked around, and then disappeared again. For another really long time.

Finally, he came back and said there were no more toasters, but that we could have the display toaster. So we took it. It was very dusty. We have no idea how long that toaster had sat up there.

But we’ve used it now for almost 8 years. It still has the 4000 ticket sticker on it (though it’s been through many a splash of dish water). It’s our pride and joy and it makes great toast and waffles.

Pretty sure that’s the original tape. I should probably try to get that off.

Back to last night. We got a princess crown for Vanessa, a toy tank for Carter, and pirate eye patches for both of them. At the last second, Daniel grabbed a hacky sack (going along with the 90s theme), but the guy said the computer is slow between transactions, so he said to just take it (at which point we said, “Um, actually we wanted that Xbox!”). We only used about half of our tickets, so I think another date to the arcade is in order!

On the way out I told Daniel I would have to write a blog post about our night, at which point he insisted that he take a picture of me wearing the eye patch and princess crown and playing hacky sack.

So I did.

Thank you, arcade, for the most fun I’ve had in months (or possibly since the 90s), and for the confidence boost from annihilating my husband at air hockey. You don’t mess with this.

Don’t forget to drop by on Valentine’s Day for our Bloglovin hop!

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jen @ grown in southern ground February 2, 2013 - 7:20pm

sounds fun! i love skee ball :)

Holly Higgins February 5, 2013 - 1:15am

Too cute. Sounds like my kind of date night!


It's a Starry Night - Shaping Up To Be A Mom November 20, 2013 - 10:53am

[…] use every day. It was probably only a couple of dollars, but it’s that good. We have the same toaster that we got at an arcade for 4000 tickets, before we were married. And now we have the Starry Night Mobile from Tiny Love, which I know will […]