we goin' ridin' on the freeway of love
Before I get started on this post, let me apologize for once again writing about video games, which, if we travel way back in my time machine (Mmmm...smell that? That's that new time machine scent!) to late December 2009, we'll see they were also the subject of the last post I wrote. In that post I shared that, thanks to Nintendo's semi-hostile takeover of my home, it has been nothing but non-stop gaming here for almost two weeks. My sons each now have their own DS systems, and we also now have a Wii, which my Tool Man has become quite enamoured with. If I wish to find any of them at any given time, I need only follow the sound of bleeps and bloops blasting through the place.
(sidebar - As I try to write this, my 7 year old is sprawled on the couch next to me playing Super Mario Brothers on his DS, my 12 year old is on the love seat busting the chops of someone on Smackdown VS Raw 2009 on his, and between the noise, them talking to the screens, and the voices in my head asking me when the kids' bedtime is because they want to snag one of those systems and play Cooking Mama, I seriously can not think.)
Tool Man seems to be most in love with MarioKart, and has spent countless hours improving his methods and puffing up his chest each time he dominates a race. "Oh, that was a pretty hard one," he'll say (and that's what she said, too) after conquering a course, and as he's blinking his beady little bloodshot eyes to regain the moisture lost from staring nonstop at the TV screen for so long, I'll glance up and notice he's come in first in every race he's played, and I'll sneer "Oh, yeah, Ricky Bobby, that was REAL hard."
(and then I'll say "That's what she said!" again, because, oh, that NEVER gets old!)
On New Year's Day, my king of the road, apparently forgetting the way my poor muscle coordination (which I could perhaps improve if I ever got a moment on that damn system to work out with my Wii Fit) makes me all flippy floppy with the game remote, asked me if I wanted to join him on a game of MarioKart. I was intrigued and excited by the possibility the request was his way of letting me know one of his resolutions for the new year was to spend less time making whoopWii and more time racking up the high score loving points with me, so I immediately dropped what I was doing and grabbed his remote.
His ACTUAL remote.
Because I didn't make any resolutions about more loving quality time, because I'm good on that one, thank you very much.
Even though I may have yelled something about "IN YOUR FACE!!"
And he may have responded with "That's what she said!"
And then that just grossed me out.
I immediately dropped what I was doing to join him and listened intently as he gave me tips on the best vehicle to pick for the character I chose to play as (Miss Peach, in case you're curious), and where to look ahead on the course to better take out other opponents. After a few games, I really thought I was getting the hang of things and doing reasonably well, and because Tool Man and I were playing on the same team, my heart was racing with pride and devotion almost as fast as he raced his Mario around Rainbow Road and through Coconut Mall. When Tool Man is intent on something, he sticks the tip of his tongue out and folds it under his lip, and when I could spare a glance over, I noticed he was doing that and I found it so adorable that all I wanted to do was throw my remote aside and get to some shakin' and bakin'.
That feeling only intensified as we put the pedal to the metal and I realized he was yelling "Go, baby! Go, baby, go!!" over and over again during various course, and I was thrilled to think he was cheering FOR ME (and Miss Peach) as I attempted to improve my pole position in Waluigi Stadium, which only made me try harder to take out that annoying Donkey Kong every time he attempted to edge me out. For three or four races, Tool Man's cheers of "Go, baby! Go, baby, GO!" continued, and his awesome sportsmanship was really turning me on.
However, on the fifth race, as we skidding along the frozen terrain of Sherbert Land, and I was preparing to thank Tool Man for all the support and encouragement he was giving me (and Miss Peach), I stole a glance toward his screen as his tongue was darting all over the place and he was screaming positive affirmations, and noticed he was - and had been - cheering "Go, baby! Go, baby, go!!" TO HIS OWN CHARACTER!!!
Not to me (and Miss Peach)!!
When I realized that, I waved a black penalty flag to send Tool Man back to the pits, and God bless him and his attempts to get a green flag back onto my course, there was no victory lap for him that night.
In between sneaking on the Wii to practice my MarioKart skills so I can get all up in Tool Man's face and make him say "I love crepes," I've also been doing some thinking and I wrote about my thoughts for Polite Fictions 2.0. This time, instead of an ongoing narrative, we're each putting our own self-contained spin on one theme, and we're starting big with The Afterlife. If you're so inclined, please go read my contribution and give me some feedback there. Also, kick your shoes off and stay awhile so you can read some beautiful words written by the others who haven't yet kicked me out of their far superior home. I appreciate, and I know they do, too.