It’s a tired morning—or rather, afternoon for all of you. How’s everyone doing? The world end yet? I mean, we just experienced the release of Pokemon Go!, which effectively blew up the internet. Seriously—my Facebook feed is utterly consumed. Which is part cool and part annoying. I’m stuck because I sort of want to participate in the fad—I mean, I certainly like Pokemon, but I don’t exactly have a ton of time for it.
Video games, as well as other hobbies that extend to this in similar ways, are the topic of today. I have a couple hobbies—one of which is writing this blog, the other is playing Magic: the Gathering, which is a card game. The latter of which gave me an avenue to a job, and the former of which will (hopefully) help me along the way in my career. Aside from that, I don’t really have many hobbies. This could be because I am a student that works 40 hours a week during the summer—so I really don’t get a break. At the same time, exactly what is the value of these hobbies?
Video games are something that people can obsess over. I know I certainly went through a phase where all I did was play video games. It was called the middle years of my childhood. Regardless, I am uncertain of if the continuation of this is a good idea. I have friends between 18 and 28 that are all checking out this game. On the one hand, it’s making people interact with one another more. Carpooling to find Pokemon in different areas, going on a hike together, and so on. That’s great, especially if it gets people out of the house that would normally just play a game like this for hours on the couch. I haven’t played it yet, but I assume there are Pokemon battles that are available to strangers somehow. In which case, it provides people an avenue to meet new people and make friends. That’s also great.
On the other hand, it is a distraction from real life. We aren’t taking hikes for the experience of the mountainside, instead we are trying to find the Tyranitar or Geodudes. We aren’t having meaningful conversations with our friends, we are discussing our next stopping point for a trip. The list goes on. So while I encourage you to experience this fad while it is popular, I hope you don’t let it consume your life entirely. It’s a game, but the reason I think they made Pokemon Go was to help bridge the gap between reality and gaming—because so many people have become incapable of basic interactions with others. It’s not too hard. Just look up, smile, and say hello.