A Backhanded Compliment

This afternoon I played Wii Tennis with my mother. It was hilarious. In fact, most of the time she looked a lot like this:

You see, my mum is far from tech savvy. To be honest, it would be more accurate for me to say she’s tech illiterate. She can barely make a phone call on a mobile phone, and uses computers purely to play solitaire and look at the weather. So explaining the concept of a computer game that can ‘see’ what your hand is doing and copy your movements is mind-blowing.

We started slow. I explained which buttons she’d need to use, and found her a character she could see easily. We practised swinging our ‘racquets’ for a few minutes, and I explained that she needed to make sure she was in range of the little sensor bar so that the console could read her movements. I got the giggles immediately. Her movements would have seemed over-exaggerated on a real tennis court; in out lounge room they looked completely ridiculous.

We played for a half-hour or so, swapping between tennis and table tennis, and I think her moves improved a bit by the end. She had a blast, and has already asked if we can do it again tomorrow. I was absolutely up for regular matches, if only to watch her step-swing-miss-swing serves, and her little dances whenever she gets a shot away neatly.

Oh, and of course to beat her—somehow she managed to win every game. I’m thinking of stealing some of her moves.


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