I’ve been playing Sims 3 ever since I was 13 or 14 years old. At first it was just a computer game. I bought the Sims 3 base game and the Pets expansion pack. For a long time I played with just those two versions. I would create families, mine including, with pets and obscure animals. Other times I would create individuals according to my liking: handsome men who would pursue women effortlessly and women who were driven with ambition.

At times, this would become me and other times, it was just someone. But the danger of this was that life became blurred between who I wanted to be and the realism of who I am. Perhaps this is where it started, maybe not. A person grows from a baby, to toddler, to child, to teen, to young adult. In all these phases you learn new things of yourself, of life, of who and what you are or meant to be. You change. I did, in a lot of ways.

I discovered the cheats in the Sims and now I can”t play without them. Money problems, no problem, motherlode. Relationship problems, no problem, just drag the bar to where you want it. For every thing I had a cheat and solution. No more hunger, no more tiredness, no more stress. The problem with this is that I wish, just like Harry Potter fans wish that they could go to Hogwarts, that I could control my life just like I do in Sims.

Control… The though of being Godly and in control of others lives seems so cool at first. You have the power to change and to inflect something on someone’s life. You can make them believe in their dreams or you can make them miserable. The thing is with this power comes responsibility. I struggle to control and keep my family of four, sometimes two, happy all the time. Then the thought of my God, I’m a Christian but I believe that in other religions it would be the same, who controls and has the most power of all, that gives people hope and believe, keeping most of them happy, a sense of word choice. I don’t want to be God, but I want to be the creator of something greater than me.

I used the game to escape life and my situation at home, at school, at work. I grew fond of this escape where I can control everything that happens to me, but life doesn’t work that way. That would be boring, though right?, the unexpected is perhaps the most exciting thing about life, although it isn’t pleasant all the time.

I got some other expansion packs and though it is nice to see and live another life, a different life, it is key to keep in mind the realism of your own. Do’t be blinded by power or disillusioned with life because of a game, or drugs or any other addictions or escapes you use. Live! (Easier said than done. True!) Take control. (Easier said than done. True!)

Be the person you create on Sims. Be the better you. Change if you must. Live the life you want to, because tomorrow is no promise, life is just a day-to-day and a second grant of life is unlikely. So take today as the last day of your stuck life which you don’t want to live and starting tomorrow, be the person you want to be and live the life you dream of.


Goodbye Sir

He left me a letter at the back of the book I was reading. We spent three days together, mostly reading each others books and at times we would join in conversation. He told me about his new job in San Francisco and why he was leaving the country side. To be honest, he didn’t look like a man who would fit in anywhere. He had a country boy smile, but his eyes longed for something more, something meaningful.

Dear Catherine, he used my full name, although we spoke of one another as Kate and no, not Leopold, but Jeff (Jefferson). He wrote the whole letter himself, his handwriting wasn’t the best, so it took me a while to decipher what he wrote.

This was perhaps the best weekend of my life. That was such a cliche, meeting a girl on a train and making small conversation, reading her deepest desires and then just like in the movies give her a sign that you might like her. Anyway, he wrote that he wished he could ride along for a little while longer, but he couldn’t. Other obligations… He ended the letter with perhaps an overused phrase,  Yours truly Jefferson. P.S. I might take you upon that offer. Hope to see you somewhere where fate might grant us another chance.


At the station, I waved him goodbye. At that point I haven’t read the letter yet and if I did, I wouldn’t change one thing. For me, he was a companion for the lonesome train ride. Nothing more. Nothing less.

He kissed my cheek, like almost lovers would. I smiled, what else could I do? He climbed off the train, and I waved mouthing the words “Goodbye Sir”. No name, just sir. He was and probably will stay an acquaintance, someone I met briefly on a train to nowhere…



Geskryf deur Melissa van Eeden



staan Spore op die stasie waar hy wag

vir die trein na Johannesburg

waar hy sy drome gaan najaag

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van die stadsgedruis waarop hy snags

gaan neurie voordat hy verval in ‘n onderbroke slaap

van ‘n taxi se toet ‘n streekstaal wat mense

in die verbygaan klets die neonligte wat as

tydaanwysing dien vir die nag


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die lokomotief wat voort storm

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by die venster uitgesmyt word

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niemand klim uit

Spore gee die man twee klippe voor hy in klim

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