Pokemon, Family, and passing on the Geekiness

So I have about a zillion half-formed blog posts that need finishing and I’m sorry I’ve been slacking here.  But today I have to share this.  Because today I saw this video:

If you grew up in the 90s and played Pokemon, and you watched that, you probably got chills just now.

I read a little more about how the game is going to work, and it just filled me up with so much joy and nerdiness and emotion that it just begged to be blogged about.

Let me tell you why.

When I was a kid, like most children who grew up in the 90s, I fell in love with Pokemon.  Pokemon was like oxygen back then–you didn’t take an interest in it so much as you absorbed it.  I resisted for a long time (I really never got into the card game as a child), but when I discovered the Game Boy games it was all over.  I was a sold-out Pokemon dork from then on.

But you probably could have guessed that from my enthusiasm about any kind of new Pokemon anything.  What you probably couldn’t guess is how my mother would react.

When I first started getting into Pokemon, my mom helped me design a board game to share with my friends at school based on the Pokemon tokens I got on the back of Lunchables boxes.  She asked questions and was interested in my new hobby.  And one day, I came home from school to find my mom curled up on the couch with my game boy, playing Pokemon Blue, and she said, “I’m going to need a game of my own because I’m ON THE SECOND GYM LEADER AND I CAN’T SAVE BECAUSE I’LL OVERWRITE YOUR FILE.”

She got Pokemon Red and we played together for a long time.

Eventually, my dad would get in on the fun, too, getting his own game.  We would trade together or battle or just talk about the game.  It was awesome to be able to share that with my family.

So when I see that video, besides the awesomeness of the app itself and what is coming, here is what I see:

  • adults
  • with their children
  • trading Pokemon together

I see families getting together around a shared love of silly geekery.  I read about the accessory that can be paired with a phone so that kids can run around and catch pokemon with their little pokewatch and play together with their family, and I see that Nintendo GETS it.  They understand that they are marketing to a generation that grew up on Pokemon, and now have families and children of their own, and they want to make something that people can enjoy together.

And I think about my own childhood, and how my parents both took an interest in my geeky pursuits and shared with me a love of their own nerdiness, and it makes me really proud and happy to think I’ll be able to do the same in the years to come with my son and daughter.

My 3-year-old, C, ADORES Pokemon.  He doesn’t know much about them but he gets really excited whenever he sees them and I let him sit with me while I play on my 3DS.  So to think that I will have a game that I can really share with him, that he can strap on a little plastic doohickey and we can run around outside together and “catch pokemon” and then he can sit with me and SEE them on my phone. . . I can’t express how happy it makes me to think that I’ll be able to share that with him in this way.

Obviously, my children will develop their own passions and interests.  It’s my joy and responsibility as their mother to learn and get excited about the things they will love.  But it’s also my joy to share the things that I love with my kids.  And Pokemon, which was a huge part of my childhood, is giving me a way to do that.  That means more to me than I could ever express.

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