Here I sit at 37 with a 360 controller in my hand, the same as when I was 27, 17, and 7. Back when I was 17, it was "ok" for me to walk into Eb, Funco, or wherever and pick up my game. It was alright to stand in line with hundreds of others waiting for the debut of the PS2 or some other hot game to be released.
Now I stand in line, and hope other people think I am there to pick it up for my son.
My Wife, who watches me play games and shakes her and calls me a nerd, and my Parents and In-laws think I am man-child, when they ask what I want for Christmas, and I reply with " oh, just a gift certificate from EB is cool". I even go so far as too keep it a secret at the bank I work. My ideas on what games are great, and what I can't wait for are proprietary ones, unless I find other 30 something nerds who are brave enough to speak first.
The first time this really ever hit, was when I was in line waiting for GTIV to release at midnight. I looked around and thought "what a bunch of douchebags", then it hit me, I was one of them. I was no longer the kid who had nothing better to do, instead, I was the 37 year old man, who these kids were looking at and saying the same thing about. It was that night, that I thought to myself " maybe its time to hang the controller up".
After this thought running around my head for a few weeks, something hit me. I am really ok with being "30 something" gamer. No longer will I feel I have to justify purchase by saying things such as " I usually only play sports games". I realized that I love playing sports video games( and other genre's also sometimes), and even at my age will not be ashamed to say so. There is something about a man and his competitive spirit, that never wears off. It took all I had, and all I could do to earn a right to receive a baseball scholarship, and that same passion and desire is what draws me to these games. Just because my body cannot do what it used too, 10 or 15 years ago, does not mean my mind forgets.
I am not sure how much longer I will play these games, I guess until that passion and desire burn out. The morning that I wake up and NCAA football or MLB the Show was released, and I forgot, is the day the controller will no longer grace my hands. Even when that day comes, I will always have the blister scars on my thumbs to remind me of the glory days of when I loved to play video games.