Sunday, December 02, 2007

That Little Japanese Plumber Rules my Life




As we entered the church building last Wednesday I told Zaya, "Honey, please don't talk to everyone about your new video game tonight. I'm afraid they probably don't care about it, really, and would rather talk about something else, OK?" The first person we encountered was our Pastor, to whom Zaya said, "Guess what?!? We just got SUPER MARIO GALAXY!"

I think we have a problem.

On the way to Great-Grandma's house for lunch today, my son announced, "Today Mario, Yoshi and Pikachu are coming to grandma's house with me."

Yup. We have a problem.

How do you de-tox a 3-yr-old from Nintendo? I know some of you out there (i.e. the non-gamers) are saying, "Don't let him play anymore games you pathetic excuse for a mother." But it's not that easy. I don't feel right just completely removing all his games, when it's something he truly loves to do. I don't mind him playing them a little bit each day. I just mind him obsessing about them constantly.

I always tell him that if he plays video games all the time he will grow up to be a very boring little boy that people will not want to play with. (I know, I've already got the Motherhood Sensitvity Award. Don't even offer. My mom gave me hers.) He counters this cogent argument with the following. "When I play video games all day long, I am very exciting." Maybe if he only ever makes friends with pixels.

What's a Mom to do?

p.s. Grandma, Mario is a plumber, and the games are made in Japan. That's what the title means.

8 comments:

aftergrace said...

Right now the video thing is really fun because it's new, but once he starts school, and finds new interests, it won't be as interesting. (I'm hoping anyway)

Scribbit said...

Well I'm glad you explained it, I figured with a name like Mario it was Italian :)

SUNNYBROOK said...

Ok Cousin Aftergrace...I have to insert something there. Once he gets into school, he discovers that he and his friends can have parties into the late hours to which they all bring gaming equipment upon which they all play one another and travel Mario's galaxy TOGETHER!

aftergrace said...

I said I was "hoping", but of coarse I could be wrong.

Babystepper said...

So far none of his friends are interested in video games at all. Maybe we'll luck out.

lilibeth said...

Well, I hate to say this, but the reason his friends aren't interested yet is because they are THREE YEARS OLD and still being entertained by pushing little four-wheeled vehicles around the carpet making vroom-vroom noises. Jumping over little snapping turtles and eating mushrooms which make you grow tall enough to jump up onto a moving ladder which takes you to a sparkling world between the worlds where you can grab enough energy to soar to a castle and fight monsters...now that is not really as boring as making the vroom vroom noises. You have to look at it from his point of view.
Remember back to when a fourth-grader logically discussed with her mother the great benefits of buying her little brother a game system that would develop his fine motor abilities, promote problem-solving skills, and reduce the number of visits to the emergency room for stitches caused by said brother's trying all those jumps in real life. Let him play.

On the other hand, watch what he plays...always, and limit the time he spends. I don't really think he will grow out of it. So use it. You are not a bad mother, just a cautious one.

aftergrace said...

lilibeth, you are a wise woman.

JAM said...

You can control the time he spends on it, but you can't control how excited he gets about the games.

Many colleges now have degree programs in "digital media" which is a fancy way of saying video games. I might have talked about this on my blog before, I'm not sure, but an engineer friend here has a son that earned a digital media degree from Univ. Central FL in Orlando, and worked his summers at Electronic Arts there playing and testing new video games at $9/hr. He now works for Electonic Arts designing video games making way more than he did as a tester, so it's a highly paid job that didn't even exist when I was 22.

Don't worry too much.