Saturday, July 16, 2016

On Pokemon Go, and Getting Old

I have a guest on the air mattress in the living room right now. Delaney and Sophie are snoring more or less in unison. She dropped by here to spend the night in case her mother decided she needed to visit the ER.

We have had our first Pokemon related injury. They were out playing yesterday evening and my daughter sprained her ankle pretty badly while running with Delaney. It got quite swollen and they were debating the ER copay vs ice and waiting, so they dropped Delaney here for an unscheduled sleepover in case the ER started seeming like a good idea. (She decided to pass on the ER but will go to the doc in a box this morning.)

Now is where a woman my age should go off on what a stupid game it is, and SEE? People are getting HURT playing it, and I saw on the news that blah blah happened to somebody and on and on. Just as our presidential election is turning into a census of how many ignorant racists live among us, Pokemon Go has been separating the Young and Young at Heart from the Old Farts and Curmudgeons. This isn't a function of age; plenty of people much younger than I am sure do sound like Old Farts this week.

Now, if you have no interest in playing the game and have no opinion about it, this is not about you. This is about the people who are all over social media ridiculing it and sharing every random news tidbit about "And this guy was playing and he...." so it's all stupid and everyone who plays it is an idiot and it's the end of civilization and we are such a dumb, dumb country and I of course am the exceptional person who would never get sucked into something like that. I'm just slightly paraphrasing the stuff I've read in the last 24 hours. It's not enough for some people to see a thing and think, "Eh, not for me," and get on with their lives, they feel obligated to tell everyone else how superior they feel about their decision. Kids today, our childhoods were so much better, and get offa my lawn! I read that stuff and think, "Oh, STFU Grandma!" then remember that I am a grandma.

I downloaded the game to see what it's like, and I think it's amazing. Catching those little monsters is fun! I can't see myself getting to the level of battling for control of gyms because I have a job and other interests and I don't really want to spend that much of my free time on the game when there are afghans to knit, etc., but I really like the social aspect of it. You have to get out and go places to play, which is awesome. The library is a pokestop. So is the playground. So are neighborhood restaurants and shops, and smart businesses are thrilled by the increased traffic. My daughter (before her injury) reported that their neighborhood was swarming with kids catching pokemons, getting exercise in the fresh air instead of sitting in front of a computer or TV. It's getting people out of their houses, and that's a good thing IMO.

Yes, my daughter sprained her ankle while playing Pokemon Go. She was outdoors, running around playing with her kid, having fun. They could have been playing any kind of outdoor game, or she could have stepped in a hole while walking the dog. Accidents happen. It's a cute game.

This accident is particularly amusing/irritating because it happened on the very day my daughter rejoined the gym. Yeah, that first month of dues is pretty much wasted now.

My guest is awake, eating doughnut holes (she brought them with her) and juice, and watching My Little Pony. My weekend plans are now somewhat fluid, but that's fine too. I'm sure there will be pokemon involved.


Liz said...

I tell everybody, I play Pokemon like I look for chipmunks. It's fun! But I'm definitely not that competitive.

Catherine said...


KatyaR said...

My only beef with it is that staff are playing it in the office during work hours. I write for a living. It's bad enough that I have to sit next to a bathroom where I can hear EVERYTHING that takes place there, and 12 feet from the breakroom, which is totally open to the floor, on a floor full of cubicles, now I have to listen to people fighting for I don't know what? Grr.

Thank god for headphones and really loud brown noise. I am definitely old. :-)

Catherine said...

It would never occur to me to play any game at work. I'm thinking your employer needs to address that pronto. Yikes!

JD said...

My kids and I attended a huge Pokemon Go event in my town last week...what a blast! I'm sure I was one of the oldest people playing the game...I'm older than you are, Catherine! But I very much enjoyed the event, and there were no incidents for the police to worry about! Everyone was on their best behavior. Our entire downtown area got a huge boost in business that day. There were still thousands of people there when we left at 2 a.m. I have no problem with it. You can hurt yourself doing 10 million other things, too, but we still do them.

Catherine said...

Thanks JD! To me it's a very positive phenomenon. The media will always focus on the few idiots who do something stupid while playing, and rarely share the positive. I was on the treadmill at the gym (the real one, not the Pokemon Go version) when our local news shared a story about a nursing home that is using the game to get chair-bound seniors up and moving. An aide carries the phone, the resident is on a walker, and they walk around together. They interviewed one cheery lady who said she loved it - "You have to pay attention and concentrate, and next thing you know you're around the corner!" You don't have to be old to be a tired old fart. I have no plans to ever BE old, and admire that lady in the nursing home.