I grew up as an only child in a very strict household.
I couldn't read books that weren't approved by my parents.
I couldn't watch movies that weren't approved by my parents.
My childhood had all the makings of an indivudal who never developed any creatvity or imagination.
Most children grow up watching or reading fairty tales, finding themselves whisked away to fantasy lands where the only limit to what could happen was their imagination.
If it weren't for my best friend Ryan and his PlayStation, it's likely I would've grown up without ever having that privelege. Though my parents were strict about many things, they did like Ryan, and that meant I could go over to his house on the weekends without too much fuss.
I remember the first day I was over there, sitting awkwardly in rickety wooden chair, worn smooth by decades of butts sliding on and off of it. Ryan was fussing with an odd little grey box, which looked to me like some sort of bizarre CD player. But I was wrong. Very, very wrong.
I remember the feel of the controller in my hands, fitting there as if it had been made for me, and me alone.
Soon, I was lost in the warm sand and expansive, rolling ocean of N. Sanity Beach from Crash Bandicoot, and the tight, dark alleyways of the streets of Miami in Driver: You Are the Wheelman.
One thousand different worlds, a plethora of colorful characters, and all of it was mine to explore.
It changed my life.
Today, I own a lot of different consoles, and I'm floored by the amazing games that the industry is producing.
But to this day, the sound of a PlayStation starting up sends shivers of childlike wonderment down my spine.
Perhaps I was late to having my mind opened by the power of fantasy. But because of PlayStation, I caught up in no time.