Buried Treasure

This week, whilst out and about eating something nice, Carole tried to claim that while she was a non-gamer she actually started playing games before me.

“Pah!” said I.

But it’s true, she did (although I will argue that we both started at around the same age, she just had a couple of years head start). She started her gaming life with a little hand-held Donkey Kong Jr machine which was brought back from Singapore by an Uncle. She’ll quite often wax lyrical about the times she spent playing this game, and how she got the score all the way up to 999. She’ll tell stories of how she, basically, took it everywhere – stories backed up by the rest of her family who roll their eyes as they remember the hours and hours of beeping they had to endure while Carole jumped over crocodiles and dodged birds.


Carole no longer possesses the Donkey Kong Jr machine. Some say that the battery ran out and that, back in the ’80s it was probably cheaper to buy a new machine than a new battery. This, to be fair, is the equivalent of the “they’ve gone to live on a farm” story that is told to children when they, mysteriously, no longer have a dog.

My investigations have revealed that there is, however, a more disturbing side to Carole’s family. Apparently, when things became too addictive, the unaddicted members of the family would snatch the item – be it a beeping Donkey Kong game, or a played-to-death tape of Don’t Cry For Me Argentina – and bury it in the garden. That’s right, bury it in the garden. This means, had I lived there, that all of my consoles would have become worm food when I wasn’t looking.

Legend has it that somewhere within this expanse of greenery lies the rotting shell of Donkey Kong Jr
Legend has it that somewhere within this expanse of greenery lies the rotting shell of Donkey Kong Jr

Now, this harsh reality of family life has traumatised Carole a little. I occasionally find her scouring eBay for a Donkey Kong Jr machine and finding that the top bids are upwards of twenty pounds. Obviously, what I should do when I see this is swoop in and enter a bid myself in an attempt to acquire this legendary item for her and net myself a few woo-age points – the relationship version of Nectar points, they are earned and lost with every action you make but if you have enough can be cashed in for various prizes, such as being able to go a day without having a shave.

I, however, haven’t done that. Nor, for those of you who are wondering, have I been round to her parents’ house and dug up their garden looking for the original Donkey Kong Jr (to sell on eBay “with some soiling”). I haven’t even done this in the hopes that one of you lovely readers out there says “ooh, I have such a machine, I will let you have it”. I’ve done it purely and simply so I can finish this blog off with one suspiciously click-able looking word.








8 responses to “Buried Treasure”

  1. arc14716 avatar

    I owned one of those Game and Watch games. It was Popeye and I enjoyed playing it.

    Then, one night–it happened.



    Yep, broke the screen in one careless moment.

    I wish I had never done that. That game was brought me joy when I was young. I only wish there was a way to get that game back ala the way Donkey Kong Jr. came back.

  2. Mark avatar

    I own Gold Cliff, Green House and Donkey Kong 2. No DKJR I’m afriad Jake 🙁

  3. MarkuzR avatar

    I’m the same… Lorna’s a HUGE gamer and I’m just coming around to the term for myself really… but I was playing tabletops and G&W when she was just two years old. I still vividly remember the day when my Mini Munchman screen cracked and leaked. Devastating.

    There’s a tree in a churchyard in Elderslie (Scotland) which still has a Han Solo figure somewhere within it’s branches. I threw it up and it never came back down, but we could never find it.

  4. Darach avatar

    Don’t worry MarkuzR;

    he’ll turn up at the last possible second, to save the day and shag your sister before the credits roll 🙂

  5. MarkuzR avatar

    Woohooo! Just as long as I get to see the video 😀

  6. James avatar

    I had Donkey Kong II! Had totally forgotten about it til now. Used to carry it around with me in the playground of Kittybrewster school, Aberdeen, before I grew up and got all boring and English. Two screens baby. That meant it was twice as good as Donkey Kong Jr. Don’t try to fault my schoolyard logic. Or I’ll steal your milk. XP

  7. The Rook avatar
    The Rook

    I remember the days when a classmate of mine had one of those Nintendo handheld gaming devices (they’ll never catch on). Don’t think I ever got to have a go on it either. Selfish kids.

    Burying the game in the garden was a bit harsh I thought. Until I tried the game. I can see/hear how that game being played over and over and over and over with those beeps and blips could drive you crazy.

    Leave it buried. 😀

  8. Lorna avatar

    Great artice Jake…what a sad end for that poor game…almost like a serial game killing household…gruesome Police reports of sad plastic corpses being dug up while the world’s media looks on, enthralled…

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