So I’m in Best Buy in the xbox 360 section. I have been known to spend some time there.
In this particular timeframe, a woman and her teenage son are there as well.
She picks up a copy of Gears of War and asks her son, “Is this it?”
He nods his head, “Yes.”
She then does something that I have seen maybe a handful of times. She checks the rating. She puts it back on the shelf and tells him, “No. I don’t think this is happening.”
I’m in shock. I think this is called, “Parenting.”
At this point, I interject. I don’t know why. Maybe it’s the hundred or so Saturdays I worked retail in a game store. Maybe it’s the dejected look on the son’s face. Maybe it’s because I have played Gears of War and it’s a fun game.
“Aw, that’s too bad, that’s a fun game.” I address them both. “But it’s more like the Aliens movie. Lots of shooting, cutting aliens in half and cursing—” I turn towards the mother. “But no other uh, themes. You can see here in the back, next to the ‘M,'” I pick up the copy of Gears of War and point out the small text next to the rating. “It’s not like for instance, Grand Theft Auto, if you’re concerned about that type of content.”
She takes it out of my hands and reads the small text. “Ah. Okay.”
“Of course,” I address the mother again. “This is entirely up to you. You have to make the choice regarding whether or not your son can handle that type of content.” I gesture towards the boy. The boy had been silent throughout this whole exchange, he never once whined or complained after his mother put back the game. “He seems like he’s been raised properly.”
We laugh, together.
She turns towards his son. “Well,” She gestures with the copy of Gears of War in her hand and a smile towards her son. “You’re saved.” She turns to me as she starts to head for the registers. “Thank you for your help.”
“Oh no problem.”
As they leave, the young man turns around, out of his mother’s field of vision and gives me a thumbs up and a really big smile. The glint from the braces just makes me laugh, and I wave back.