That’s pok-ay, for any of you who don’t have elementary school boys.
It all started when Vincenzo came home from a play date with a friend, brandishing three worn Pokemon cards. “Look what B-Dog* gave me today!” I felt like my kid had just been offered drugs, and that he had said yes.
Pokemon has spread through the class like a peace pipe at Woodstock. There started out with one main dealer, who generously gave out a few cards to any open hands, and then those small time dealers would give one or to other kids until some of the parents cracked and bought a whole deck for them.
Yes, I am one of those parents. It’s just that Vincenzo hasn’t been passionate about anything since the fall of the flying, fighting, secret agent shell ninja turtles, and seeing him happy makes me happy. Plus he will do anything for a Pokemon card, and let me tell you–our toilets have never been cleaner.
Pokemon trading is not allowed at school, so the kids trade madly on the bus. If you are ever held up behind a bus and it’s taking too long, be assured the Pokemon are involved. On Wednesday last week Vincenzo got off the bus and announced sadly that the bus driver said they’re no longer allowed to trade Pokemon on board. On Thursday he got off the bus and said that he and his friends are now trading invisible Pokemon cards on the bus.**
Sometimes the kids return Pokemon for other things like a toy whistle or a flashing keychain toy. I’d love to see how much Vincenzo can get with one Pokemon…trade it for a whistle, then for a dragon toy, then for a Nerf gun, and eventually he’ll end up with a nice two-bedroom home on the lake. Or at least a red paperclip that’s worth as much.
It’s not Pokemon themselves that I dislike. Pokemon is actually a card game, and there is a bit of reading and adding/subtracting involved, and Pikachu is incredibly lovable. There’s nothing inherently evil in the game (except Team Rocket of course).
What I don’t like is the highly addictive nature of Pokemon.
However, I used to ask Vincenzo how his day at school was and all he could tell me was, “I don’t remember.” Now I get massive quantities of data about all the Pokemon everyone traded with each other and which cards he’s going to try to get tomorrow and how Unfeasant evolved from Tranquil who evolved from Peadove and how many HP Scullipede has and how Articuno’s weakness is metal and how Gyrarado’s does 50 and 80 damage and how Articuno is a rare holo Pokemon. So there’s that.
The Pokemon, while banned at school, are still finding their way in. Here is an art project where kids copied Eric Carle’s method of painting tissue paper and cutting it into shapes.
(Pikachu, in case you can’t tell.) (And also a kid who is so excited at seeing a real live Pikachu that he pooped his pants.)
And here’s a lovely drawing of two Pokemon trainers throwing Poke balls at one another.
And my personal favorite, a treasure box:
Any guesses what’s inside? Anyone? Anyone?!
ARRGH! IT’S ME POKEMON!!!
I really hope those pirates are kindergarteners because if not, there’s going to be a mutiny when they get back on board.
*Name changed to protect privacy and also to sound more gangsta.
**If this works, we might have a breakthrough technique for recovering drug addicts.