I had a strange and unexpected pleasure today. I was actually able to purchase a Wii Fit console for the younger son. When searching for a graduation gift for said son, he had indicated (back in May) that he would really like a Wii Fit. Now, it should be noted that younger son has about as much interest in fitness as I do in video games in general, but since he had done so wonderfully throughout his high school career, I was true putty in his hands. I probably would have bought him a bazooka had he asked. The good news was that since he was off to his summer employment directly after graduation, he really didn't require the unit right away and it gave me some time to track it down. Well, it has been eight weeks of looking up and down the streets of greater Toronto. The husband and I have been in every conceivable electronics boutique within a 40 mile radius of our home. Nobody would place our names on a wait list. No need. The damn things magically disappear from the stores within minutes of it being delivered. One store manager actually laughed at me when I asked if there were any in stock. Laughed at me!! Like I was knowledgeable in the quirks associated with video game buying. Now I ask you! Do I, even in the slightest, bear any passing resemblance to a young male adult? One poor clerk took the time to explain to me that Nintendo metes these suckers out with an eyedropper. The stores are given no advance notice as to when they might arrive, for fear that clerks and other workers will notify their friends as to the time and location of the deliveries. When they do make it to the neighbourhood stores, there is no consistent quantity that might arrive. Sometimes they get 2 in and other days 10!! It is basically a hit or miss proposition. Today, while visiting Walmart, (yes, I am still frequenting the devil's haunt!!) I took a chance at the gaming store in the same plaza. Well, today was a hit. They had just gotten in 2 units and for the first time in my life, my timing was bang on!! (For a musician, I have really crappy timing!) I felt like I had actually taken one to "the man"! I "beat the system"! I ruled!!
While posting my success on my Facebook profile earlier this afternoon, a cousin/friend asked me if the unit was "really" for younger son. Last week that answer would have been and unqualified yes, but something has definitely changed in the past 3 days. You see, after decades of avoiding video games due to an ineptness that is legendary, I discovered Guitar Hero!! Now, video games have not always been on my "nyet" list. I loved PacMan. That crazy little yellow mouth gobbling fruit at warp speed. I used to play the first generation of Nintendo with the boys when they were much younger. Back then, all Mario and his brother Luigi did was run and jump. I understood how to move my fingers across two buttons on the controller. The husband bought me a first generation GameBoy complete with Tetrus and Dr. Mario. But, once the games required the use of six fingers on each hand, I gave up. The damn things play music in a continuous loop that would be effective at Guantanemo, and the rapid movements gave me vertigo. We moved the consoles down to the kids lair in the basement, and I rarely intruded. I let it be known that after their 16th birthdays, I would no longer buy video paraphernalia. They were on their own! And to their credit, they never asked, nor did they overspend.
And then Nintendo came out with the Wii. If you haven't seen this thing, it is truly remarkable. The graphics are stunning and the music not annoying. The Wii not only encourages, but demands that the players get off of the couch and become physically interactive with the games. Not only that, this brilliant company realized that they needed to expand their market beyond pre-pubescent boys. Hence, Guitar Hero and now Wii Fit. Guitar Hero is fandamntastic!! For anybody, like me, who has a passing interest in music, it is the ultimate game. It comes with a guitar shaped control pad and allows the player to feel as though they are playing with the greats of rock and roll. Younger son has been all over me for months to play with him, but I have resisted. I was very concerned that if I played, even once, that would be it. I would be hooked! And so it was that I trudged down to the lair on Saturday with First-born Nephew to give me my first lesson on the Wii! I haven't been able to stop. SHIT!!!! What am I going to do when younger son takes his Wii console to school with him? And now the Wii Fit? The husband arrived home and saw it still wrapped in it's box.
"You haven't opened it yet?"
"If I get hooked on this thing, I will never be able to find another!"
Shit! Wii are not amused!!