Geek It Happened to Me

It Just Dawned on Me That Bill Gates is Partially Responsible for My First Kiss (and Now I Need a Drink)

Take a look at this screen shot from an old IBM PC game whose filename

was “DONKEY.BAS” (the “.BAS” filename extension denotes that the

program was written in the BASIC programming language):

I will bet that I am the only human being who feels an old adolescent

twinge whenever I see this screen. The reason is that back in 1983,

when I was just shy of turning 16, I was reverse engineering this game

on my friend’s dad’s IBM PC when a girl interrupted me for my first

alcoholic drink and kiss. Had I not been at that machine, that

experience could potentially have been delayed by years (you must

remember that it was 1983, well before the Internet and geek chic made

nerds cool).

Today, I discovered that Bill Gates himself co-wrote DONKEY.BAS. If

Bill hadn’t written that cheesy little demo program, my personal

history would’ve been far less interesting. The girl, you see, was so

much trouble that the rest of the story, I’m afraid, is unbloggable.

Needless to say, the thought of ol’ Bill’s involvement in my first

kiss, however tangential, is a little irksome. I need to do a

double-shot of Crown Royal now.

Photo: Doctored photo of Bill Gates hugging Joey deVilla.

Thank you, Bill…yeeeeesh.

If you want to play DONKEY.BAS or see its innards, check out this entry on IndieGameDev, where I’ve posted both an executable that’ll run on any Windows box (even XP!) and the BASIC source code.

5 replies on “It Just Dawned on Me That Bill Gates is Partially Responsible for My First Kiss (and Now I Need a Drink)”

I still can’t get over how disturbing it is to see my hands on the end of the arms of Bill Gates. “Gosh, he has girly ha — hey, wait!!”

Yeah, sorry Wendy. It was quick and dirty edit on a snowy Saturday afternoon. I could have dedicated more time to it but it was too creepy to keep looking at. Yeesh!

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