Right now the world is a very serious place. There is a lot of violence happening all over the place. The past few months has seen hatred spewing from both sides of every issue. And then last week the internet proved that there are people sitting primed and ready to pounce on any issue.
Last week Nintendo introduced a new app called Pokémon Go. It’s an augmented reality game based on the popular franchise from the 90s. If I just lost you then give me a second to explain two things…what Pokémon is and what augmented reality is.
In the 90s there was a cartoon series along with a bunch of video games called Pokémon. The basic premise was that there are tiny monsters all over the world called Pokémon. They all have unique powers and live in different habitats. On the show there were kids that would catch the little creatures and use them in tournaments against one another. The video games, toys, card games, and board games worked on the same idea.
As far as augmented reality…the way the game works is that you walk around in real life using a virtual map on your phone. When you find a Pokémon then you will see it with your phone’s camera in real life. The creature might be on the ground in front of you or it might be sitting on someone’s head. You have to catch the creature.
If you don’t know what an app is then I suggest you stop reading this blog and join the 21st century.
I have not played the game. Pokémon was not something that I got into when I was a kid. As a matter of fact, they didn’t even rear their little heads until my senior year of high school. So, when I heard about this game the only response it got out of me was an appreciation for Nintendo’s ability to draw from deep within their nostalgic well.
But it did get a response out of millennials because those are the people that really loved the whole craze back in the day. It’s also been really popular with kids who aren’t old to remember when everything in the store had a Pikachu on it.
But my blog today is not about the game itself. It’s about haters.
Immediately after the game came out people across the internet went to their phones and their keyboards to talk about how stupid it was. They talked about what a complete waste of time it was to go out and walk around looking for Pokémon. There was a game store near my house that had a Pokémon catching event and someone took pictures of the kids walking up and down the sidewalk looking at their phones so that they could post it to social media and make fun of them.
You’re making fun of kids for liking a game. Are you kidding me? And it’s not even a game that requires them to sit in a dark room and stare at a TV for hours. They’re going outside. They’re exercising. They’re talking to other kids…and you’re sitting on your butt in your car taking pictures of them to make fun of them.
Why can’t we just let people like things? Not everyone is going to enjoy playing a Pokémon game. So what? If you don’t like it then don’t play it.
This is something that I’ve dealt with all of my life. I was into Star Trek in high school. I got made fun of a lot because I read Star Trek novels at school and I had Star Trek T-shirts. But the same kids that made fun of me would read Sports Illustrated and wear their favorite team’s jersey. What makes the thing that you like more acceptable than the thing that I like? The only difference is that you’re being a jerk about it and proclaiming that my thing is dumb.
I can’t tell you how upset that I get when I mention that I’m looking forward to “fill in the blank” and someone in the group loudly says “Gah! Fill in the blank is so stupid!”.
No, it’s not stupid. I actually really like “fill in the blank”. You don’t have to like it but you can keep your opinions to yourself.
And the argument that you’re making about why Pokémon Go should be banned is not valid. I know that someone was robbed because they wondered into a trap. I know that car accidents have happened because people were trying to play the game while they were driving. I know that kids have wondered into the street while staring at their phones. The game isn’t to blame for that. That is behavior that has been going on for years thanks to texting, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Kik, and a thousand other apps. People that need something to spew their hate vomit on are focusing on the game. IT’S NOT THE GAME!
There are stupid people in every group. That doesn’t make the group stupid.
So, instead of making fun of these kids for liking something that you don’t like…why don’t you shut up and let them play their game?
There is a great little diddy that sums it up that I’m going to post below but I’ll warn you that it has a curse word in it before you click on it.
Thanks. Now go do the thing that you like that I’m not making fun of.