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I was commissioned to write a song about the issues surrounding mothers and their children playing video-games. Apparently there are quite a lot of issues. Such as mums finding games too violent, over-stimulating, and addictive; and mums wondering whether to let their kids play in their rooms unsupervised or take over the living room with all the noise and technology that goes with gaming. I found it a pretty challenging song to write, and by the end I was overwhelmingly siding with the mums!
The song began to write itself, as songs tend to do, as an ode to motherhood. The more I felt into the issues the more it seemed to me that the 'answers' (if there are any) lie in the intuition of the mother herself (the commission was specifically for mothers). This line got cut from the song, but shows the thinking behind the scenes: 'All I can do is trust in my knowing, it comes from the same place you did, deep inside my body'.
I'm not a parent but from what I can see the act of creativity that it takes to make another human is the same act of creativity it takes to go on guiding this being in the world, ie. a miracle. The more a mother can trust herself and rely on her own body of wisdom the more she will be able to successfully guide the mysterious creature she birthed. Experts and research and regulations aside, a mother is the truest expert when it comes to her particular child.
The song looks at some of the biggest concerns that come up for mums and the situation that many mums find themselves in. My way to tackle it was to take the emphasis off the problem (ie. gaming) and put it on the empowerment of the mum herself.
There's a war, there's a war, there's a war in my living room And I'm the one with the law, I'm the court marshall We all know who you're most afraid of Not those ghosts those enemy soldiers But your mum (with good reason) I have to test everything that comes into this nest When it comes to your soul I'm not easily controlled We all know who's the main consumer I'm the one with all the power in this room (don't forget it now) Will it eat your brains will you move and shake like a zombie? Will it stunt your legs and arms will you grow your thumbs only? You know the world's 3D and it's green and it moves like your body Shouldn't you be out there climbing the tallest tree? I always want what's best for you and sometimes I fail and there's nothing worse I also always want what's best for me so can you tell me what it's going to do for me? I am a lateral thinker, I am a problem solver, I am a miracle maker I am your boundary keeper and I am your fierce believer It's written into my program It's written into my technology It's written deep into my bloodstream This is my technology what's yours?
With so many different perspectives it can be hard to know where to start - a little like walking into a crowded pub. Sorry about that.
But so far we've not found a way to streamline our review output - there's basically too much of it. So, rather than dilute things for newcomers we have decided to live with the hubbub while helping new readers find the columnists they will enjoy.
Our columnists each focus on a particular perspective and fall into one of the following types of gamers: