It’s probably easy to look at Chris Kooluris and dismiss him as a manchild not ready to grow up. That’s what his fiancee did when he decided to convert the bedroom of his Manhattan apartment into his own personal video arcade.
Each night, 37-year-old Kooluris sleeps under a comforter splashed with images of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. The ambient lights flashing around his bedroom doesn’t come from an alarm clock, but rather the half dozen classic video game cabinets lined up around the room.
The choice Kooluris made cost him his fiancee, who decided that living with someone who chose to embrace his childhood was simply a price too expensive for her to pay. According to Kooluris, after selling all his bedroom furniture and sinking roughly $26k into seeing his dream come to life, the fiancee took it on the heel and toe, probably to find someone who appreciated a drab apartment and boring furniture all in the name of being an adult.
For his part, Kooluris seems to have some regret. According to the NY Daily News article, he still holds a torch for the woman who thought his dream was a bridge too far. “If you are going through relationship issues, you need to invest time in the relationship and work on it,” he said. “Do not work on your arcade more than your relationship.”
One must wonder, however, how secure the relationship was in the first place. While some could look at Kooluris as a child in constant search of stimulation, outside the confines of his arcade, he’s a pretty productive person who earns a living as a senior vice president of a global communications firm. He’s been involved in a number of product launches, and would be the first to argue that he more than earns his keep.
If anything, people like Kooluris represent why we strive to do better. If his story has meaning, it’s that life is about choices. Some will choose families, some will choose a solitude life and others will choose to spend a shit ton of money on an arcade. If he had to lose someone to find himself, isn’t that a price people should be willing to pay?
On the surface, sure, this is just another rich guy who can’t let go of the past, but I wonder…why is that always such a bad thing? Happiness seems to come in many forms, and for Chris Kooluris, his happiness comes in the form of all the Street Fighter tournaments he can handle within the comfort of his own bedroom arcade.
The rest of us should be so lucky.