Tuesday, April 03, 2007

We Don't Need Another Hero

That one guitar, felt good in his hands
Didn't take long, to understand
Just one guitar, slung way down low
Was his one way ticket, only one way to go

This weekend, I was introduced to a new way of life; a foreign land that I had only read about. I had been part of this world once before...many years earlier before becoming old and jaded. My heart was freer then and I could slow down and savor the joys of new opportunities. I was young...I was innocent...I was... the gamer.

This past weekend, at what should have been a playdate for my son, I was chatting with my friend's husband. They had recently moved into their house and were slowly settling in. Their three year had claimed much of the house with his toys, books and videos. The buzz of battery operated machines occupied much of their new home...including the basement.

He took me down to the room where little kids were forbidden without the company of the big kids. There in the corner, sat a 50" flat-screen, HiDef TV. And next to it sat the machine that has forever taunted me; PlayStation II.

I am a joystick man. Perhaps I should use past tense; I was a joystick man. Atari was my game of choice. I was the master at Asteroids. One time I had played for over 5 hours straight until my brother tripped over the cords when he went to the bathroom. I mean, who can think of peeing at a time like that?

Fast forward to 2007. A plasma TV beckoning me to engage it with the idle Playstation II laying at its feet. The problem; that fucking controller. It has more buttons than an upholstery store. I couldn't embarrass myself with that. I tried to explain my problem. The man just smiled.

He walked to the closet and returned with...the guitar. He said, "We're not going to play golf or racing. We're playing Guitar Heroes."

This is what wet dreams are made of; a chance to jam like Slash or Mick Mars. In seconds, he had the track list up for me to choose which song I was going to grace Springfield, VA with as I magically connected with this instrument.

I looked over as I imagined the smoke filled room packed with screaming fans.

"We're going all fucking out. Sweet Child of Mine, for fucks sake."

He looked over. "Dude, you're standing in the middle of Thomas the Tank Engine set. Relax on the language."

"Okay, sorry" I said aloud, but my mind was saying. "Shut the fuck up and turn the fucker on."

The initial notes rang out as I watched a twenty-something, long-haired, tattooed rocker--the mirror image of me--finely pick the notes. Meanwhile, I began struggling to connect three fingers to green, yellow and blue buttons.

Umm, the song isn't sounding so great. It seems that if one misses the notes on the guitar, they subsequently don't play in the song.

Pretty soon, there is grumbling and boos coming from the TV. "What the fuck is that?" I ask.

"Dude, it's interactive. They are booing you because... well, because...let me put it a way you can understand it... you fucking suck."

The song stops midway and I am booed off stage. Me. The guy who saw Poison three times.

"They aren't going fuck with me. I'm doing it again."

This time I made it through the whole song. Two cuts later, I completed it with a 'good' standing. Then I went on to Cherry Pie and succeeded with that. (OK, I got booed off the first time then too.) Then it was Shout at the Devil followed by Heart Shaped Box.

Nothing could stop me. I was going to jam forever. Fans were grabbing at my pants begging...

"Daddy, move. I wanna play with Thomas."

And that one guitar made his whole life change

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Blogger Mamma said...

I've only heard about it. I can't believe you got to try it. And in my home town no less. You were probably right next door!!

Great post!! Especially the lyrics.

9:16 PM  
Anonymous MetroDad said...

Holy crap, my friend! It's a good thing I'm not gay because this post is filled with so much awesomeness that I might just jump your bones!

Firstly, need I even say anything about the fact that you started out with some Foreigner? All it did was remind me that Foreigner 4 might be one of the greatest albums of all-time?

As for Guitar Hero, I've never tried it. But have you heard that almost every single rock musician is addicted to it? Apparently, Metallica delayed one of their concerts recently for a whole hour because they were all embroiled in a serious Guitar Heroes competition.

I HAVE to try this. It might be my new DDR!

10:46 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Yay! You rock! It sounds like so much fun!

11:02 PM  
Blogger Yondalla said...

I am not a gamer. At all. I don't play them.

Well, expect years and years ago when Brian had the chicken pox and I played the original Nintendo 64 Yoshi game with him to keep him from scratching.

And since Christmas when my kids got guitar hero. I was never "into" music all that much. Certainly not rock.

But damn, that game is fun.

10:20 AM  
Blogger Whit said...

You're my jukebox hero.

10:21 AM  
Blogger The Brian said...

Dude you are so money.

11:02 AM  
Blogger ThePapaDog said...

I'm so going to look into buying Guitar Hero now!

You are my muse... except you're not a female goddess.

12:43 PM  
Anonymous L.A. Daddy said...

Eww, that sounds like fun! I'm not allowed to have the video games. I would find myself up at the three in the morning, yelling at the TV, and getting nothing else done.

But the guitar sounds fun... Hmmm.

12:02 AM  

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