When I told my 9-year old son that Game Truck was sending a truck to our house, he was ecstatic (disclosure – I received a free rental). The thought of playing video games for 2 straight hours was almost unfathomable. He rarely plays that much in a whole week.
“Can I invite my friends?” He asked.
“Of course you can,” I said.
“Yay!” he said as he rattled off a long list of friends.
“You can only invite five friends,” I said. He looked as if I had just punched him in the gut. He would have invited his entire school if I let him.
“Why can’t I invite more?” He asked with the saddest face he could muster. I told him that his other siblings were inviting friends and I was inviting some of the boys from church. His face immediately lit up again.
“At least I’ll have more people to play against,” he said. “I’m going to crush them all.” I awaited the maniacal laughter, but it never came. As I watched him plot his victory, I had to share one more bit of bad news.
“You probably won’t crush anybody,” I said. He looked at me as if I were speaking a foreign language.
“Why not?” he asked.
“Because your friends probably spend more time playing video games than you do,” I said. He considered my words for a minute and then replied.
“You’re probably right,” he said. “But I’m still gonna have fun.”
On the day the truck arrived, my kids could hardly contain themselves. It almost felt like Christmas morning. My kids’ friends started arriving at the appointed time and lined up outside the trailer while the two attendants explained the rules.
Once inside the trailer, the kids were treated to a buffet of XBox, Wii, and PlayStation games (rated Teen and below). The four wide screen TVs, comfortable couches, and stereo sound lured them in like a siren’s song.
But I think the parents were more excited than the kids.
“Thank you so much for inviting my son,” said one mom. “Now I can go home and take a nap.” Other parents also expressed their gratitude. There is no greater gift for a parent than two hours of free time.
While the older boys played sports and adventure games, my younger son and his friends stuck to simple Wii games. My 11-year old daughter and her friends played a few games but they decided to leave because the testosterone levels inside the trailer were too high.
I appreciated the two attendants because they were attentive and helpful. They assisted the younger children with their games and even played a few games with the older kids. They even surprised me with a few gifts – Skylanders Giants figures, Appgear game accessories, and water bottles filled with candy.
As the party wound down, the kids rushed to play as many games as they could. The attendants changed out games at a lightning pace.
When the party ended, my son and I watched the Game Truck drive away as his friends left one by one.
“How’d you like the Game Truck?” I asked.
“This is the best party ever!” He said with a huge grin on his face. For him, it probably was. Not only did he get to play so many video games, but he also got to spend time with his friends outside of school. I think that may have been his favorite part of the day.