My real name is Eric Pratt. I've been a Commodore user since elementary school. My dad got our first computer in the mid-80s and it was a Commodore 64. I didn't have much interest in it for years. My dad had quite cheaply gotten a green monochrome monitor for the best color computer in the world. I didn't even know it could do color until I went to a friend's house. He wanted to play games on the C64 and I thought that would suck. He convinced me to try anyway. When we booted up his computer, the screen was BLUE! I thought his computer was screwed up and I actually asked him what was wrong with his computer. He assured me there was nothing wrong and it was supposed to look like this. When we loaded up games, they were in color! They finally kicked me out of their house at dinner time. I ran home, opened the door, and let out a Captain Kirk roar, "Daaaaaaaaaaad!!"
My interest in the 64 finally surfaced in the spring of 1988 (6th grade for me) when two things happened.
1) That stupid crappy monochrome monitor died and my dad got an 1802 monitor. This not only got us into the color world but also got rid of that crappy battery powered speaker.
2) My dad gave me an old issue of Commodore Magazine with a type in game I wanted to play. I couldn't type for crap but after about a month, I finally got the thing entered. Of course, I didn't know about the checksum program in the back of the magazine and even if I read about it, I didn't understand what it did. Apparently neither did my dad because we never used it and after a few rounds of printing the code and checking for typos, we couldn't find any more typos yet the program still didn't work. I decided I would learn how to program to fix that game. I started pouring through the BASIC reference material we had and looking at other BASIC Programs we had, like Telengard, to learn how to write code. My dad had the Programmer's Reference Guide but never used it. I ended up taking that thing to school with me everyday. Yes, I was that nerd that hid commodore magazines and programmer's reference manuals in his books during class while the others were hiding Playboys. My dad took me to a computer show and I started rummaging through some of the boxes of old books and magazines under the tables. I found a box of books that were one dollar a piece. Most were completely uninteresting and then I hit the jackpot. I found a copy of "Mapping the Commodore 64". I had never heard of it but I had read the Programmer's Reference Guide enough to know that I really needed to know what every bit in the computer was for. The instant I flipped through the pages I knew exactly what it was and I snatched it up.
Of course, I never did go back and fix that program. I still have the magazine. Maybe I'll type it in one of these days. All I can say is: It better not suck!
I took my 64 to college as my only system for a few years. I didn't break down and get a PC until the summer of 1997. Until then, I had lived off of a lot of CMD bolt-ons: SuperCPU, CMD HD-100, FD-2000, RAMLink, and Swiftlink. I also had a Boca 28.8kpbs modem connected to the Swiftlink with Novaterm in the RAMLink set to autodial on load. I had the GeoCable II that I used with an Epson Color Stylus 500 and Easy Script. Did a lot of my homework with that. For years I didn't have enough room for a computer and a TV, so I did the old VCR/1701 trick to watch me some TV although it sucked that I couldn't watch TV *and* work on the computer at the same time. I also to this day love the hell out of my Super Snapshot. I've got a v5.22 that I think is the best cartridge ever invented for the C64.
I love role playing games, both tabletop and computer. Of course I was big into The Bard's Tale games, Wasteland, Dragon Wars, Telengard, Ultima III, and the AD&D gold box games. But I was a huge pirate back in middle school (hey, I had no money and my parents bought me jack shit) so I played a hell of a lot of games beyond RPGs that I still love to this day.
I'm a sysadmin by trade and I owe all that to the Commodore 64. It was the perfect launching platform for my IT career as well as my hobby.
I've known about Lemon64 for quite some time but never got an account until a few days ago. I recognize some of you from the C4 Expo and World of Commodore shows. I've never been one to be highly interactive with people but I'll try to be on here from time to time.