Pokémon No!

 

 

The game is all around. Literally. Pokémon Go is now played by more people than are on Twitter.

 

Good Lord. Are you serious?

 

I was challenged to upload and play the game. Even though I am far past the targeted demographic… Challenge Accepted.

 

When the original Pokémon was released in the 90’s, it was made for children younger than my youngest son. Which is to say, our household largely missed out on the phenom, Of course, there was no escaping it. I even recognized the phrase, “Pikachu, I choose you!” no matter how much I tried to avoid it.

 

Now they have revived and reinvented said game in a thunderous comeback. The droves of players of the augmented reality game have affected everything from restaurants to police stations to Holocaust Museums. People walk along, staring at the screen of their devices, and try to find the simulated characters embedded by the software of the game onto their cameras. This has led to some serious issues which the police and others are trying to warn people about. While folks are paying more attention to their screens rather than their surroundings, there have been robberies, accidents, near misses, and one dead body found.

 

This is alignment to my personal experience. Honestly, I thought you’d have to be a moron to walk into a dangerous situation while playing a silly game. You’d have to be even stupider to drive while playing.

 

Now I understand.

 

I loaded the game and got my husband involved. We caught the first trial creature in our living room, and had a good time together looking for more. The thought that this cool game could lead to trouble was ridiculous. Weak-minded, weak-willed people, sure. But the average player must certainly be more aware, right? Well…

 

One late afternoon while in the car, my husband was driving and I opened the game. The gyms flew by, and I found myself shouting, “turn left here” and so he did. As the sun set, we chased a few of these things around while out and about, and I really enjoyed playing. Maybe a bit too much.

 

Then we got home. My eyes still locked on the screen, I hadn’t realized we had arrived until the car stopped. Jumping out of the front seat, I watched the screen while trying to relocate a blip I’d seen.  Totally engrossed in the game, I became frustrated that the damn thing seemed to have disappeared. Then I looked up.

 

I jumped as if waking from a dream. The sun had set and I was standing in the dark, four blocks from the house. For a moment of panic, I didn’t know how I’d gotten so far. More importantly, I didn’t know a game could control me like this.

 

As an aside, my IQ is 130. I’m not easily swayed by the latest ‘must haves.’ Trends annoy me more than excite me. Basically, I’m old. With all that said, I apologize to all those I thought less of because they joined the masses and played this game. I now understand. It is an addiction.

 

Pokémon Go might have been my latest, most enjoyable, addiction. But I’ve had to break too many addictions in my life. I don’t need to know where I would end up should I allow this one. The police station? The clinic? Hospital? Morgue?

 

Sad to say, Pokémon Go is now deleted from my device. I’ll try to keep an eye out for those addicted, and try not to judge.

 

PS, I’m really glad my grandchildren are too young for this round from the folks of Pokemon.

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