Mario and his meatballs, they just keep tasting better and better

Super Mario Galaxy 2 (2010)

Look, it’s the 21st century now, so it’s not completely wetty for a man to do the cooking anymore. At least, that’s what my many, many self-help books tell me. Well, I don’t like it, but I’ll have to go along with it. Anything to keep the old tummy from rumbling. And you know, naturally I’d be perfectly happy to subsist off white bread and chicken all day and every day, with a few pints mixed in.

Unfortunately, you come to regret that one healthwise. I don’t mean that these foodstuffs will make my heart seize up or explode; that outcome is inevitable anyway. I’m far more worried about being subjected to that you-really-should-know-better-at-your-age tone from my doctor, which is worse than any other form of social shaming. This unhealthy diet ain’t making me look any better in my tartan-coloured stockings and old-boy suspenders either, which really ought to be addressed.

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The name’s Burkey… Heathen Burkey

GoldenEye 007 (1997)

There seems to be a strange phenomenon in life whereby the most major and far-reaching decisions tend to be left in the lap of children, while the decisions made by adults are of no consequence at all, or you never had that much agency in the first place. You might think that marriage, or buying a house are earth-moving decisions on your part. But it’s society that makes this decision for you, if you’re really being honest with yourself.

That momentous decision to have kids? Oh come on, how many of us were accidents? Even if you’re too careful for accidents, and you want to reproduce, then it’s still not your decision, that’s your genes acting on your behalf. And as you get older, it’s not like you’ll be the one deciding when you’re going to shuffle off to a home, which one you’ll even go to, and when to pull the plug at the end of it all. It seems to me that the older you get, the less you get to decide.

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Building the Best Pokémon Team (Part 20)

Building the Best Pokémon Team (Part 20)

There comes a time in every man’s life when he realises that it’s over, beyond any shadow of a doubt. Generally, this is when a man walks into the baby section of a department store for the first time and realises he now needs to appear knowledgeable about their baby’s health.

You may not know what to ask for when you’re in there, but fear not because I’m about to take you on a tour through the Pokémon Gen 4 Baby section. You should recognise some of the faces – they look just like your mates twenty years ago, back when you all used to have a booming social life.

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The Student… hold your Form Baton in your right hand, and the box of wine with your left…

WarioWare: Smooth Moves (2007)

I’m fully aware that children may be reading this, so I hate to advocate mind-altering drugs here, but I just want to say that I am thankful to alcohol for many varied reasons. In general, all it’s ever done for me is make me shouty, belligerent, uninhibited, free-spending, giggly, light-headed and stupid. And for all of that, I’ll be forever grateful for its existece.

You see, I know you’ll find this hard to believe but I used to be a dreadful stick in the mud. If ever a moment passed when I wasn’t at the top of my mental game, I would feel embarrassed. Do you know what this left me as? An overly studious, financially conscious bore who wouldn’t have known what a girl was if one came up and… well, not sat on me, but you know what I mean. 

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Never bring a white van to a go-kart track

Mario Kart 64 (1997)

In around 150 AD, after several years of labour and study, Claudius Ptolemy completed his Cosmographia, his long-studied understanding of the geography of Europe and the world. Beginning in 1308 and finishing in 1320, Dante produced his masterful magnum opus, the Divine Comedy. And in this year of our lord, Burkey presents to you his much anticipated treatise of the worst types of road users.

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There’s plenty to click, and it’s not much of a drag either

Mario & Wario (1993)

To this day, I still can’t decide whether or not I like mice. I’m not talking about computer mice, to which I’m fairly ambivalent. I’m certainly a lot more ambivalent about them than an old boss of mine who was from an age before computers, and therefore distrusted them immensely. He’d pull the old wired mouse around his desk like he was trying to start a lawnmower, and he only ever called it “the rat” in a low grunt. You’ll know the difference between mice and rats if your cats ever bring them in, that’s for sure. Here’s a tip – rats are a bit more chewy.

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Building the Best Pokémon Team (Part 19)

Building the Best Pokémon Team (Part 19)

Never mind their Switch remakes, the release dates of the original Pokémon Diamond and Pearl definitely makes a lot of us feel old. Perhaps it’s because the DS they were released on finally had a goddam backlight, so gamers too tight to shell out for a GBA SP could play at nighttime. But the Gen 4 games seemed so new and modern at the time, who would have ever thought they’d be several Generations ago now?

We’ve already gone through the usual staples – the starters, the common bird, the rodent. But with the likes of Infernape, Staraptor and Bidoof, Generation 4 has worked wonders so far. It’s after this point that each Generation strays away from the template and goes off to do its own thing, like an enfant terrible who’s just discovered tattoos and piercings. What kind of zoomer designs will Gen 4 come up with?

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