The Time Steve Jobs Got "the Kissing Disease" (He Wasn't Making Out!)

It's a scourge of junior high school students everywhere: Mononucleosis. The highly infectious disease is colloquially dubbed the "kissing disease". But that's not how Steve Jobs got it. He got it making a video game.

In an interview on The Last Word, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak recalled when he made a Pong game for himself. According to Wozniak, Jobs got a job at Atari because he loved Pong so much.


"Then he [Jobs] came to me, and he said, 'Hey, Nolan Bushnell now"—the owner of Atari—"wants this one player Pong game called Breakout..." Jobs had been assigned the job of creating the Breakout circuit board.

"I said I would do anything to be able to design a game that kids are going to play," continued Wozniak. "Steve said you have to do it in four days. They want software then."

Wozniak explained that making a game isn't something you can do in four days; it's something that will take six months. Wozniak didn't think he could do, but got down to work with Jobs.

"We worked day and night," Wozniak said. "We both got the sleeping sickness, mononucleosis."


Both Wozniak and Jobs finished a working version of the game—albet four days late.

So how is mono spread? Spit, snot, and making Atari games!

Wozniak on Steve Jobs biography [MSNBC]

(Top photo: Paul Sakuma | AP)

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