It's my sweetheart's birthday today. I thought long and hard about the perfect birthday gift for him. First I started planning a weekend away...Montauk, Newport, and a new mountain resort a few hours away were all on the list. But then I realized... Silly! That's what I want for MY birthday.
So I went back to the drawing board and found something that we both can enjoy, and also will hopefully be fun for the whole cross-language family:
I am not really one for videogames, but this is indeed pretty cool. Instead of sitting stationary in front of the TV, Wii forces you to get up and move. The handheld remotes act as your racket, club, bat, or whatever other instrument you are playing in the game. Not only is this pretty fun, it's apparently kind of healthy too. I just saw this article:
A study by Liverpool John Moores University finds normal Wii use could burn 27lbs (12.25kg) worth of calories a year. They studied gamers in the United Kingdom and found that they spend an average of 12.2 hours weekly playing video games. They also found that kids playing a Nintendo Wii more than doubled their energy expenditure when compared with playing other video games. Wii energy levels rose to 156% above resting level, as opposed to 60% above resting level for normal gaming. That doesn’t mean a whole lot to me, but translated into calories it does. The Wii players would burn 1,830 calories per week playing for 12.2 hours at that energy level.Since I have class tonight, I gave Damir his present last night. We set it right up in the living room so everyone could play. We had a lot of laughs watching Damir and his dad play each other in baseball... especially since I don't think either has ever picked up a bat in real life before. There they were in the middle of the living room, one pitching and one batting. Good stuff.
The graphics leave a little to be desired on the games that come with the set, but my guess is that other games purchased separately probably are a little more sophisticated. There are some other fun functions of the system, like a digital photo program that lets you edit and play slideshows. I dig that.
So even though we don't get a romantic weekend away, this, I hope, is something that will bring a lot of fun to our odd family for a long time to come. There is very little common ground I can share with the parents given the language barrier, so this is really a birthday present for all of us.