Several months ago, we were over at my sister-in-law’s house for something, a birthday party most likely, and A was having a good time with her cousin playing Nintendo Wii. They were playing High School Musical: Sing It. This is a game where songs from the movie are played and you sing along with them into a microphone and the game judges you on your pitch and durations of the notes. Despite the fact that A isn’t into High School Musical, she had an absolutely great time singing along with the songs.

Since the movie Mamma Mia came out, A has been totally digging on ABBA. She loved the Mamma Mia soundtrack and asked us to get ABBA albums out of the library. She’d walk around the house with her headphones on singing ABBA. We’d be in the van listening to the Mamma Mia soundtrack and she’d be singing the songs.

Several weeks ago, we went to Target to look for a birthday present for one of her friends. A went to the toys to look around while L and I went around to get some things that we needed (dishwasher soap, Capri Suns, etc). When we got to the toy department, A wasn’t there. Not to worry, though. She wasn’t far off. She was in the video game section, just standing before the cabinet with eyes wide as wide could be.

There, on the top shelf behind the glass, was a game. Singstar: ABBA. It’s the same kind of game as the High School Musical one I talked about earlier, only it’s on the PS2. And it’s ABBA. And her birthday was coming up.

“That’s what I want for my birthday,” she said. “That right there.” I told her that we’d have to do some research on the game to see what songs were on it and read reviews and what not in order to see if it was really something she wanted. We also informed her that it was going to be much more than the $30 (the cost of the game) because we would also have to purchase the microphones, which were going to be another $25.

I knew that she REALLY wanted this game when she said, “I could use some of my Christmas money to buy the microphones!”

I gave her the text-book parent answer. “We’ll see.”

Well, her birthday came and one of the presents she opened up was Singstar: ABBA. She hugged it and didn’t want to put the box down.

“Can we put it in?” she asked.

“Uhhh, I guess. But we don’t have the microphones.”

“So? I just want to hear the songs. There are some I don’t know and I want to at least listen to them before I have to sing them.”

So we put the game in and set it up with a throwaway profile so she could listen to the songs. Two days later, it was the weekend and all she kept asking was, “When can we go to GameStop to get the microphones? Can we go now? What about now? What about after lunch? When can we go?”

We went after dinner and she bought the microphones. We arrived at home and she was on the floor opening the box before she had even taken her coat off.

The next 3 hours was as close to an ABBA concert as I’ll ever get. Or want to get. She was having the time of her life, belting out Dancing Queen, The Winner Takes It All, Mamma Mia, and others.

And you know what? It looked like one hell of a good time. We set up S.O.S. as a duet and I sang with her. Her sister sang songs with her. L sang songs with her. And even Z sang with her. Everyone was having a good time. So good, in fact, that I’ll be purchasing SingStar: 80’s very soon.

I’m looking forward to singing Culture Club, Wham, and Flock of Seagulls.

Yes. I am a dork.