Cody Linley loves his mother. "My mom is amazingly strong and wise" the twenty year old star of Hannah Montana fame told me last night. "I'm really lucky to have a super-mombecause that's what she is."
There you have itproof positive that Cody Linley is not only a tween heart throbnot only talentednot only the on-againoff-againon-screen boyfriend of Hannah Montana (he plays Jake)he's perfect in every way.
I got the chance to talk to Cody the other night at the launch party for Sega's Super Monkey Ball Step and Roll the newly updated version of their wildly popular game for the Nintendo WiiSuper Monkey Ball. In a downtown restaurant filled with tween girls thrilled to be near him and (mostly) too embarrassed to talk to the young starCody played the game - in more ways than one.
When we got thereCody was playing Super Monkey Ball Step and Roll. And like any kid (heyif you're young enough to be my kidyou are a kid) he was totally absorbed. Did he see the fawning metal mouthed tween-agers gawking? Probably nothe was too busy racing his Monkey around. Like the original Super Monkey Ballthe Step and Roll version has players move their favorite Monkey characters through an increasingly difficult serious of challenges. This version adds new charactersnew brain teasersand most importantthe Wii Fitness Board. (As long as you have one - it doesn't come with the game or anything and you can play it without one.) Nowplayers can use either their Wii Remote or their Wii Fit boards to move their Monkey through the many levels of the game. You can even set the game to count the Monkey Calories you burn - the more you movethe more you burn. (That's what I like to call the "mother-marketing" aspect of the game: if you tell a mom she can burn calories doing something fun...you can bet she's gonna do it.)
When it was time for Cody to play the celebrity game - to stop playing and get to work shaking handsgiving interviewsand posing for picturesjust like thathe changed gears. (Further proof of Cody's perfection.) Wouldn't it be nice if all of our kids did that? Imagineif they had (home)work to get to we asked them to stop playing a video game....and they did right away!!!!
In work modeCody thrilled my daughter by posing for a photo with hergiving her his autographand (and this was big) telling her he liked her shirt. He answered the questions sent to me by Role Mommy Beth Feldman's daughter:
Question: Do you like Hannah Montana in real life? Cody: We're really good friends. I haven't spoken to her in a couple of weeksbecause she's really busy. But she's so niceand her family is really great.
Question: How long have you been playing DS and Wii games? Cody: Since I was two! I have older siblingsand they showed me a lot of stuff when I was young.
He also told me that he's in New York rehearsing for his Broadway debut in the musical "Over Here" in which he reprises the role originated by John Travolta in the 1970's. It's set in the 1940'sand he's getting to use his Dancing with the Stars experience to do some Jitterbugging in the show. He loves New Yorkhe says. Growing up in Texashe didn't have anything like Times Square or the Statue of Liberty outside of his window.
Through all of thisthoughI couldn't help but wonder - what does Cody Linley have to do with Segaor Chiquita? (Chiquita and Sega are partnering up for the "Super Bananza Sweepstakes" where you can win prizes such as a complete game room makeover including a 50" HDTVsofas/chairsand Wii console and Balance Board!)
And then I saw a bunch of tween-aged girls swarm Cody for a picture and an autographand I realized...it's because everybody goes bananas over him!
Role Mommy correspondent Nancy Friedman is a former TV promotions producer turned writerauthorghost writer extraordinaireretired Bar/Bat Mitzvah singer and contributor to See Mom Run. Nancyher husband and twin daughter and son live in NYC with their new puppy who was recently discovered by a big time pet agent (no joke). Her blogFrom Hip to Housewife offers a hilarious glimpse into Nancy's life as she ponders important feminine topics like aging gracefully without the influence of botox and her 20 year quest to lose the same 10 pounds.