What The Atari 2600 Taught Me About Personal Finance

Atari 2600

Last weekend I got a call from my mom. She was cleaning out her house and came across my old Atari 2600. She asked if I wanted it back. I said heck yeah and took off to retrieve it. I’d forgotten all about the thing, but the minute I saw it the memories rushed back. The hours I spent playing Yar’s Revenge, the mania to get all the way to the end of Pitfall and, of course, joystick thumb from pressing that red button so hard and so often. But after the nostalgia wore off I remembered something else about that Atari 2600. It gave me my first real lesson in personal finance.

At the risk of dating myself, I’ll say that I was about ten or eleven when the Atari came out. If you

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10 Responses to What The Atari 2600 Taught Me About Personal Finance

  1. betty says:

    If we could all only have had moms that patient and steadfast

  2. princessperky says:

    Awesome Mom, and great job learning from that lesson

  3. Fish says:

    You brought a sweet smile to my face this morning. I was all of 12 when the 2600 came out, and I remember the hype well- and our wanting one desperately. My brother and I got ours for Christmas.

    I grew up in a remote town and remember that one of the few places you could buy the games was at a swimming pool supply store. How weird is that? Fun memories.

    Not sure I learned much about money from ours, but certainly other lessons were learned. :)

  4. Lori says:

    I had a similar experience when I was around that age. I wanted The Coolest Bike Ever: White with hot pink splashes and neon purple handles and tires (sweeeeeet). I saved for maybe 6 months (parents paid for half as a birthday gift). The happiness of getting something from your own work made a good impression on me. Yea parents who help us like that!

  5. Heidi says:

    At that time (1977)we didn’t even have a tv, so that made getting an Atari a nonissue in my parents’ household.

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  7. Jim ~ mydebtblog.com says:

    I was really young when I got my Atari. This brings back the good days when graphics were dots you use the joystick to move the dot around. Pole Position, Pitfall, Frogger, some of the best games of the time. It makes me wonder if mine still works.

  8. ????? ????? says:

    good post!

  9. ????? ????? says:

    thanks

  10. oscar says:

    Nice story, nice lesson.
    Thank you Jennifer.

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