Hey ! It's me Ali in Alaska!
My name is Alessandro Romano' and I was born the 10th of June 1965 in Milan, Italy.
In 1967 I had my first encounter with the U.S. as I went with my family for two years to Rochester, Minnesota after my dad who was an executive at IBM. Sadly the only things that remain of that period are a lot of beautiful pictures.
I attended the italian schools until the year 1978 ,a turning point for my whole life. My father (may he R.I.P.) had a second assignment to work abroad for two years ,again in the US, so I went again with my whole family in Minnesota where I fell in love with the beautiful city of Rochester. I even remember my address : 3519 17th avenue NW and the phone number 2898951! I went to the near by John Adams Junior High School . What a period of time! How many discoveries! I was staring at a whole new world with the eyes of a fourteen year old boy. No other problems other than to enjoy myself! Among the new things I met there was what in a later period became a mass and worlwide phenomenon: the portable electronic gaming.
I got my first handhelds back then, a Mattel Football,that I still have, and an Entex Baseball that I broke, since I remember playing entire seasons of 162 games ,imagining to play for my beloved Minnesota Twins.
This is why I consider myself a Minnesotan. After all I passed 4 years of my life over there and I'm very,very fond to this great state!!
After the return in Italy I have attended the Italian scientific high school and fought a personal war attending the university . In 1998 I got married with my wife Claudia and 3 years later in 2001 she gave birth to our beautiful boy named Davide who is now 7 and a half.
And now here am I almost 30 years later right in the middle of my mid-age crisis (lol).Thanks to this I begin searching eBay for those games of my childhood: the Entex Baseball and few others that I remembered playing in my youth........1........3........10........and I never looked back!!!
Now at the age of 44 I've bacame a big handheld collector and I'm looking to catch up with the biggest handheld and tabletop collectors around the world. As a friend of mine wrote me : I got the fever!!
My hobbies are right now, tennis (I'm quit good at it :)), vintage handheld games ,the game of baseball (I love this game) as I don't miss a single game of my Twins on MLB.TV and I'm considered a kind of a computer geek since I like to assemble and mod them (hardware) and prepare them for the use (software),so when someone has a problem Pc related....here am I!
Well since I was a big fan of the aviation world,among other things I used to play on the MS Zone at Combat Flight Simulator, so I had to have those kind of truculent nicknames they use there so I chose "tana"(without the H),a greek suffix for death ,and "tron" for electronic. So tana+tron= electronic death. Kind of scary!!
Roll the drums,please! I now have to make some special thanks!
A big thanks has to go to Rik (the boss), Neil, Linda, Dan ,Pat and all the other wonderfull people that I met in the forum of the handheld museum site. It is really a friendly community!
A very,very,very (3) special thank you has to go to my wife Claudia for letting me go with this beautifull but expensive and cumbersome, due to the amount and volume of the games, hobby of mine.
Thank you Claudia I love you!!
PS - You might be wondering what the heck the title means ! Well ...that has been , in a certain way , a refrain of my life ever since my stay to Minnesota .There was a snowy tv commercial shot in Alaska of , if I don't recall wrong, a car battery, in which the greatest of 'em all, Muhammad Ali, popped into the screen at the beginning saying : " Hey ! it's me Ali in Alaska". Absolutely HILARIOUS!
From then on when some parent asks me at the door who is it, the answer has always been " it's me Ali in Alaska".