Tuesday, July 24, 2012
This is My BOOM Stick
Bruce Campbell is the shit. Some know him for his writing, most of us for his acting, and all of us for The Chin. Few know its exact chemical makeup, but if you’re thinking brimstone and horsepower, then you’re on the right track. The Chin shattered Thor’s hammer, then sprinkled the bits on top of its Cobb Salad. They say that staring at The Chin too long can create an eerily womb-like sensation. Chin straps and plastic surgeons tremble when in the same room. And it’s not that hair can’t grow on The Chin; it’s just out of respect that it doesn’t. Hail to the king, baby.
So Bub is a Wii Resort Golf duffer now. Smooth segue, I know. It’s how my mind works. It will make more sense in the end, I promise. Stick with me here. Boom Stick with me.
I originally introduced him to the magic of the Wii several months ago. I was bored, and Bub didn’t really share many amusing anecdotes or inspire much witty banter. Didn’t really do shit, frankly; just kind of sat there like a drooling little Buddha. So I decided to entertain him by doing exactly what I wanted to do.
We started with baseball on Wii Sports. He was kind of into it, but lacked a fundamental understanding of the game. He’d dish up a 64 mph cherry right down the pike, then cheer as the computer doubled into right. The only rule he came to understand was The Mercy Rule.
Then one day, dicking around in the Training mode, I found the home run derby. Phenomenal. Never knew it was there. With each sweet crackerjack of the bat, I started yelling “BOOM!” which he got a big kick out of. Babies are an easy crowd; the jokes rarely get old.
But the derby did. Bub now required something a little more sophisticated, refined. A gentleman’s game, if you will. He was ready for Wii Resort Golf. Much more complicated than baseball to operate, he was content at first to sit and watch. He carried the BOOM over like a long-division remainder from baseball to my tees shots. And then the Disembodied Wii Vocabulary Builder would chime in with “Nice shot!”
He loved it. A week later, he started showing up to the links of the bedroom in polos and tablecloth pants. A fifth of single malt, spikes, a divot tool. He made thoughtful club recommendations (“BOOM!”), praised good play (“Nice shot!”) and quieted the gallery before each putt. I’m certain he would have pulled the pins if only the TV were a few inches lower.
Then, inevitably, Bubber Woods wanted a turn. He would just swing and swing, not hitting anything yet exclaiming “BOOM! Nice shot!” What he lacked in proficiency, he made up for with enthusiasm. He’d pick up a stick outside—“BOOM! Nice shot!” A piece of chalk, a CD, his juice cup—his world is full of Boom Sticks, as well it should be. We even caught him one night in his crib, eyes heavy with milk, hitting imaginary greens in regulation.
Say what you want about Video Game Parenting, but the dexterity and hand-eye coordination demanded of this game is formidable. And Bub can actually hit balls on his own now. Sure, his short game is for shit and his putting physically pains me to watch, but I'm proud of him. He did it. And the satisfaction he must feel? Immeasurable. Nice shot, kid.
***Okay, so I lied. There’s really not much tie-in here back to Bruce Campbell, other than hoping that Bub turns out just like him. Dare to dream. He’s got the Boom Stick. Now we just need to work on that chin.