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Volume 71, Issue 137, Friday, April 28, 2006

Life & Arts

Gamer says farewell to UH

Leet Speak

Derek Lanphier 

Ever heard the saying, "All good things must come to an end?" Well, it is time to say goodbye to another school year; but unfortunately, I won't be only saying goodbye but also farewell to The Daily Cougar and UH. I'll be transferring to a new school next year and more than likely be working at its paper. As much as I have loved writing for The Daily Cougar, I will not be a student here any longer and therefore cannot work for the school paper. It seems as soon as I got started here and found my little video game niche, I have to leave; but it was a good two-year run in which I've learned things about my writing, video games and our school.

Don't be discouraged, however. I personally know some of the people just waiting in line to do what I do here at the Cougar, and I can vouch for their ‘leetness.' Most of them have been close friends that have been itching to take my job. As soon as someone new fills in for me, it will be like I was never here.

I can't express how grateful I am for all my loyal readers. I know there are only a handful of hardcore gamers on campus, but I was proud to be your voice and to keep you informed on the latest games. As I have always said, "It's good to know someone reads my crap."

However, I'd also like to thank another group of people. Any reader that I ever upset with one of my comments (particularly when I would bash Halo 2), any person that got riled up at the things I would say, and anyone who ever wrote me an e-mail informing me that I had no idea what I was talking about; I thank these people the most. They are the reason I wrote the things I did.

You see, it wasn't my goal to make anyone mad or upset with me, but I did strive to make people think. I know that those people who become passionate about the things I would say were the people I affected the most. I made those people think and form opinions and argue with me. That alone is an achievement. Many writers go their entire lives without making anyone think about anything they write, but thanks to these people, I know that I will never be in the category. That is why these people are my favorite readers.

Of course, I am eternally thankful for anyone who read anything I ever put on paper (and for the Cougar for giving me a chance). However, one person I'd like to thank personally is Dusti Rhodes. When I first started writing for the paper, she took me under her wing when she was the Life and Arts editor and really helped me become part of The Daily Cougar team.

As for me, it is likely my readers will see a new version of Leet Speak crop up somewhere in the near future. Just because I won't be writing here anymore doesn't mean that I'll go soft. I'm still going to be the video game fanatic I have always been. Who knows? Maybe I will own you one day.

Allow me to leave you with one more thing to think about: When we play games, we play to have fun. 

Gamers, like myself, can be competitive and unruly when things aren't going their way. I'd like to be the first to say that it is just a game and that if you aren't having fun, you shouldn't be playing. Playing to win is not the way to go when you alienate fellow gamers in the process. 

Enjoy the fact that we live in a time when things like video games can be enjoyed. 

Finally, if you are a hardcore gamer, take my experienced-driven advice and get another hobby to have on the side; this will keep you sane.

Send comments to dcshobiz@mail.uh.edu

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