Love in a time of Pokemon

wattle || cityhippyfarmgirllove || cityhippyfarmgirl pokemon || cityhippyfarmgirl

I recently listened to a podcast with Alain De Botton on the topic of love. The first time I was interrupted 26 times before it came to the end. A concoction of three children and a mischievous whippet was the source of the interruptions.

Despite the stopping and starting, I didn’t turn it off.

I couldn’t turn it off.

The conversation was fascinating and I knew I would be listening to it a second time, if only to hear the lines I had missed the first time in their entirety. (I did listen again and was happy that I had. )

Alain de Botton’s way of describing our culture of romanticism, and also why you should be upfront with your own fault’s from the beginning of a relationship was quite wonderful to hear.

So is there magic in some people’s relationships? Or is it an incredible amount of work, effort and kindness that creates this thing called love of which isn’t made by two perfect single creatures with an ambition to live happily ever after.

Alains’ words had me musing for far longer than the podcast, that’s for sure.

[The conversation with Richard Fidler can be found here. Or the rather condensed version of what he talks about in his book, found here.]

But what does Pokemon have to do with love I hear you ask?

Well, over time my small people have spent many happy years with heart eyes for Pokemon. With the eldest two being marginally obsessed, the third was drawn in almost by osmosis by her older siblings. Pokemon, of course she shall LOVE it! they cried.

At the announcement of Pokemon Go, the small-sized ones pricked up their ears and declared…awwwwwesome. Can we get it on your phone Mama?

Nope, not a chance, I said without barely raising my head.

At least I didn’t really disappoint them there, they really didn’t think there was a chance at all of me actually saying yes to that, but it’s always worth a crack eh kids? And yes I still love you all, even though we aren’t getting it.

They then moved pretty swiftly straight on to the kids they knew with their own phones and the crucial app. Straight after school there is a small beeline as kids begin charging around pointing phones in trees. Hastily mumbled hellos to waiting parents and conversations continue, spoken in the garbled tongue of Pokemon.

I recently (happily) caught a conversation between two arborists up a 20 metre tree. With me unintentionally listening in on what started out as some typical tradey talk between two up-a-gumtree fellas and ending in talk of Pokemon Go, strategies on playing and the Pokémon they had managed to happily capture the night before.

I couldn’t stifle the laughing longer than a minute so had to come on inside, where my attention was instantly brought back to that mischievous whippet. All I had to do was follow the trail of chewed objects, she’d lovingly left out for me.

Luckily for me, as I picked through the wreckage of my lounge room, I already knew that any relationship was built on a fair amount of work, effort and kindness. Whether that be with the man I’ve chosen to create a family with, my three Pokemon loving children or that mischief-making whippet. Which I think, keeps things far more interesting than any happily ever after that Disney or Hollywood would have you believe.

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19 thoughts on “Love in a time of Pokemon

  1. Gosh, I’ve just woken, showered and sat down on a weekend minus my child and partner to devour a plate of fruit whilst checking emails and get a few things done and I find this. How ironic that I do! Last night I watched ‘This Is 40’ (accidentally for the second time) along with the lovely film called Iris, which was so much more inspiring (due to me being an artist) I must say. Anyhow, I woke this morning with all these thoughts in my head about the movie I’d watched. At the silliness of some of the things in the movie and I thought, “that wasn’t real life”. I wouldn’t let my kid sit through that many shows of Lost. I wouldn’t be crawling around in a hotel room like they were … And a few other things that I won’t bear here! Anyhow, it’s just funny I read this now. Thank goodness we haven’t QUITE bought a puppy yet AND that my daughter is only (almost) 5 and hasn’t caught up on the Pokemon thing yet. My partner has told me how crazy it’s getting out there. I hadn’t a clue!!! I hate to think what will be around for her by the time she’s old enough to get onto fads and followings. I really am going to have to listen to the Podcast myself now. I’m very curious as to what it has to say. Such a well written post. I “get it”. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on love and life. VERY ironic. 🙂

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  2. We are fans of Alain so this will be a nice Sunday listen. Oh Pokemon. My son received a few cards with special “powers”and then wanted to buy the cards to swap at school. As he was not in to the show I kinda swayed him to save his money for other things he really wanted. However a friend of mine has a blended family that are all really compassionate about animal welfare and bonded by Pokemon. When I saw how good it was for the family and the outings they were going on together I saw how beneficial it can be. Also the big one has moved on to computer games so now I have another issue to tackle.

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    • Im certainly not against Pokemon Go, if it get’s people out and about walking, running, in general just out, hey that’s a great thing. It just looks funny when there are suddenly a bunch of people that would normally be in that one position all walking with their phones trying to catch things that aren’t really there 🙂 Oh world, you are funny sometimes.
      As for computer games…sigh, I hear you.

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  3. This is a great read Brydie. Oh…Pokemon, if my children asked for the crucial app, or a phone for that matter they would have received the same response. Work, effort and kindness are all good things to remember when it comes to our relationships. Happy days with your gorgeous family & whippet!

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    • The eldest is desperate for his own phone, ipod, ipad, something or other to plug in…apparently the communal use of all said things as a family just doesn’t cut it. We’ll see how much he wants it by his independent saving up.

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  4. Excellent read there Ms C. Pokemon Go is most probably the latest in a line of new mind control/consumerist games, aimed at hitting kids where they inhabit, their imaginations and cashing in on our communal human need to grab things and hold onto them. How curious that their parents are succumbing to a wave of austerity with “things” en masse and hurling out all of their worldly possessions in a fit of minimalism when their kids are cramming their devices with useless virtual creatures. I find that somewhat disturbing that we can, as a species, be so easily directed these days.

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    • Now Ms Narf, you know I think of you as a wise sage, and I particularly like your last line as it got me thinking. Do you think we are more easily directed now than in times before or always with the tendencies to follow rather than think independently. I don’t have an answer…but will think a bit more on it.

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      • I think that we have been conditioned to be easily led by the prevalence of social media, trending etc. and with us needing to, more than ever, “fit in” and be socially acceptable. Back prior to the net the only way you could compare yourself to other people was look over the fence, watch the telly or read a magazine. Now everyone’s lives are replicated in several varieties of social media and we are under the microscope 24/7.

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  5. Ah, Pokemon Go !It would explain the boy in a tree in our main street recently who I thought was talking on his phone up a tree…. I suspected he had really bad reception. I am so behind the times .

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  6. Gosh I just cannot bear having sacred listening time interrupted – it enrages me unreasonably, so I save it until I am likely to have a clear run 🙂 My kids have Pokemon go on their iPods – but seeing as we don’t have phone reception at home and they don’t have phones, I wasn’t exactly being as lenient as they thought I was lol 🙂 Love in the time of Pokemon indeed.

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  7. Hi I’m a long time lurker. I play Pokemon go with my husband. I love it not for the Pokemon but that i have discovered my local parks and public art at the same time as getting exercise. I have 2 girls who like to play it on my phone, but they don’t need the encouragement to get out walking like we older ones do. Do you get the book of life newsletter? Love Alain de Botton!

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