I am video game deficient. This is entirely Mrs. Crappy’s fault.

My buddy Chachi is the complete opposite of video game deficient. And he’s about to put his experience to good use.

I’m don’t recall the exact moment when the edict was issued, but at some point in the course of our relationship, the then-future-Mrs. Crappy announced that I was not permitted to have a gaming system of any kind. Mrs. Crappy doesn’t issue many edicts  — or perhaps I tend to not notice many of them — but she has enforced this one to this very day. Her reasoning? She worried that her husband would become so involved in EA’s NCAA Football Of Whatever Year He Has Handy that we would never actually speak again.

Mrs. Crappy is most likely correct about this. But that doesn’t mean I like it.


Chachi probably spends more time with gaming systems in a month than I have through my entire 44 years, and he’s come up with a way to capitalize on his passion while raising money for Make Room for Kids, the Mario Lemieux Foundation charity founded by our mutual friend Ginny to build and stock playrooms at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh.

Chachi’s notion: Take pledges. Play games for an hour for each $100 raised. Raise enough money to play for at least 24 hours, with all of the cash going to Make Room For Kids.

And call the whole thing Chachi Plays.

Here’s how it works: At 7 p.m. Feb. 11, Chachi will sit down at MIB Ninja Entertainment on Smithfield Street downtown and start playing. If he’s got $2,400 in donations, he won’t stop until 7 p.m. Feb. 12.

Ginny has done a fabulous job of raising money for Make Room For Kids, and the battle she waged with Michelle last summer for the hearts and wallets of Pittsburgh baseball fans was epic (and I would say that even if I hadn’t won one of the donated prizes). But this is perhaps the best combination of talents and generosity I’ve seen, and Chachi deserves some support.

Here’s what you can do: Visiting the Chachi Plays site and clicking on the Donate button at the top of the page. Let’s get some more cash for the kids at Children’s, and let’s make sure Chachi is playing for at least 24 hours next weekend.

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Nifty Chachi Plays logo by Melissa Ott Design.


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