I Need Your Help!
I have a girlfriend. Let’s call her Amy. She’s that person. The sort that could be a character on the female version of The Big Bang Theory. You know: she gives 110% in some areas, and makes up for it in others.
Like social skills. She can talk about her latest boyfriend, obsession, fad diet, internet addiction, hobby or anything really for hours upon without giving you much of a chance to get a word in.
Especially when it all comes crashing down. Honestly, Amy makes some very poor choices — she has more exes than anybody I know, and that includes me — and her way of dealing with life’s problems is to get a bottle of something fruity and sweet and cheap, pick up the phone and talk herself out.
I love her to pieces, but sometimes, when I have a busy day and I have to spend two hours of it with my phone pressed to a burning ear murmuring things like, “Yes, that must have been terrible,” and “Uh-uh,” and “Then what happened?” and “Mmmm, ‘scuse me for a moment while I make coffee/go to the loo/kill myself…” it can strain the friendship a little.
She goes through phone after phone because people stop answering her calls after a while, and she has to get a new number.
I don’t because I’m not that sort of person, and I know I can always smear a bit of honey on an invitation to have brunch together and get my life back for a while. Sometimes she shows up and we go somewhere and get all giggly, sometimes she forgets because she has a new obsession, and I’ll learn all about it in due course, often late at night when I hadn’t planned to spend two hours on the phone being a good listener.
Right now, my feet are bloody stumps because we walked all over town while she demonstrated her newest craze and I’ve got more Covid kilos than I really should be carrying around. I’ve been nursing myself with Ibruprofen and Passion Pop and cheesecake, and now I need to vent a bit, and you are it, dear reader.
If you are of a certain age…
…then you know all about Pokémon. It was a cutesy Japanese thing that was a video game and a TV show and a card game and a way of life for a borderline nerdish sort of personality.
I had a lot of things going on in my teens, and I wasn’t always allowed to indulge myself in such worldly nonsense, but teenage girls get a few breaks now and then, and I would sometimes avoid real life by immersing myself with my schoolfriends in the complicated lives of these “Pocket Monsters” and their youthful trainers and their adventures and battles and progress in various skills.
I thought I’d left all that behind, but a few years ago these creatures invaded smartphones and gave people of a certain bent a new reason to walk around with their heads stuck in their phones.
Amy showed up and her opening burst was, “Britni, you’ve got to install Pokemon Go, and you’ve got to be Team Red, and you’ve got to be my friend,” and I did, and we rushed all over the place from one location to the next and often back again while we did all sorts of weird things and battled and caught and trained and potioned and swapped and evolved and a whole bunch of other things that I had never expected to be spending my Saturday doing.
And now I’m Level 20, I have a menagerie full of these things, a screen avatar that looks nothing like me — I need more points to refine my looks, apparently, or maybe I haven’t found the exact right area of the game that involves hairstyles and feet that have been reduced to tattered remnants — and two in-game friends, one of which is Amy and the other is some random guy we met and accosted when he had his head in his phone and pulled it out to see two women ambushing him and demanding that he hand over his best monster.
Honestly, it got a little weird for a while, and while he didn’t quite run away screaming, he wasn’t in a coherent frame of mind by the time Amy had done with him.
Story of my life, really.
It seems that I need more friends. Ingame friends. Right now I have starter level monster and item storage, and if I want to do something I need to do something else to make room in my limited resources, and I need to perform quests and constrain myself even more and tie myself up in knots trying to figure it all out and the sweet fizzy wine didn’t really help, but if you have any clue and know what to do with it, here’s a number you can use:
9971 4440 6101
Apparently, it helps if my ingame friends are an outgame long way away. Like Scotland or Indiana far away, because we swap monster eggs and they taste better if they have distant genes or something.
I’m a total newbie at all this, and I’m well out of my depth, so if none of this makes sense, then buddy, join the club!