Long Time Trainer

I don’t know why I’ve had this on hold for the longest time, but I’ve been planning to write about this actually, this was one of the first stories I wanted to share on my blog but since there’s a lot to it, I had writer’s block on it for 2 years, but now I’ve put it together.

I think it’s time I tell you my story as a Pokemon fan, and this time I’m not leaving anything out. I didn’t grow up with the anime or watch it like most of you did. I do have a collection of cards, that I started collecting in my freshman year and then into sophamore before collecting Chaotic cards.

How did it all start? It came out of nowhere that I decided I wanted the original Ruby GBA version, for the hell of it, to try something new.

When it appeared under the Christmas tree in 6th grade. I couldn’t put the game down. At first I didn’t know the right tactics of being a Pokemon Trainer so I just ended up fighting with my starter: Torchic the most as well as adding additional Pokemon I needed. So there were a lot of times I didn’t know what the hell I was doing or where to go next, until I was told where to go. But my brother and I were playing and talking about the game nonstop. (we had the same version).

Until, I finally learned that in order to beat the last Gym Leader I had to stop Team Magma’s plan first, I did so and met Groudon. When I caught him, I became more attached to him than I was to my Blaziken, since he was my first legendary Pokemon to own.

One time, when we did dancing in gym class, I did my assignment on my own, and danced to the Pokemon theme, I practiced and practiced and came up with a unique routine. I loved practicing it so much that inside somewhere I still want to dance to it again, but I only remember like, one move from it. My teacher was planning to select one group to perform at the next assembly, I really wanted it to be me, but instead she chose a group of 5 girls doing some kind of jazz dance instead, (which to be completely honest here, I didn’t like that performance) I was devastated and it took me a while to move on from that.

I delayed on beating the Pokemon League for almost a whole year, because I had no fucking clue how I was gonna pull it off, but then finally I did it and with a LOT of help and backup, I caught Rayquaza next.

By the time he was in my party, I LOVED him. But he wasn’t my #1 just yet, (we’re getting to who that’ll be!) but I had a thing for Rayquaza that was special. I always pictured myself riding on him, flying high above the ozone layer. That fantasy went on for a year. I think it still is buried in my brain somewhere….and by the time I was 14, the next level of my place as a Pokemon Trainer came.

By now I had a better understanding about how to play, so when Diamond and Pearl came out, I decided to get Pearl because I thought Palkia looked cooler than Dialga.

I played it nonstop, and the only really hard part at first was the 2nd Gym Leader until I finally beat her. Then, I had to put my play through on hold when I went to summer camp for two weeks. But, due to some unexpected bad events there, I went home early.

But it truly began on August 23rd a few days after I came home. I had beat the 7th Gym Leader, and knew what was coming soon. I was in my room on my bed, playing that game. Ever since we adopted two cats, one of them had made it a routine to keep me company whenever I sat on my bed to play Pearl. I climbed up Mt. Coronet and when I first saw Palkia, my heart literally raced.

As soon as I threw that Master Ball….Palkia became the icing on the cake for me as Pokemon Trainer. I loved everything about him, especially when I got Pokemon Battle Revolution the following Christmas, and imported my legendary team (including Groudon and Rayquaza, migrated from Ruby) onto the game and saw Palkia and the rest of my party on the big screen. Palkia was awesome to me in every way, the moves, the looks, even his cry. I loved him, and I still do. There was something that made him special from all the other Pokemon I had, and he was different, so in a way he was sort of an inspiration before Optimus Prime came along.

Back then, I frequently fantasized about spending time with him. I drew pictures of us at the Spear Pillar on the peak of Mt. Coronet. He would stand on that platform and I would sit on a higher structure next to him; which he would lift me up onto, and we would gaze at the stars for hours. That came to my imagination when Super Smash Bros. Brawl came out, and they put in the Spear Pillar as one of the unlockable stages to battle on in the game. But that wasn’t what started this little fantasy. It started with a story I put together in my mind, where I entered him in a Pokemon Contest, we won, and I hugged him. Since then we became close, and yes I did imagine us hugging at one point. Palkia loves his Trainer very much!

Palkia was a guardian to me that I loved in my dreams, only I could understand what he said. My friends thought it was silly but they never said it was dumb. So I ended up buying a plush doll of him for my 16th birthday. I have earrings of Palkia too, and I wore purple and white together all the time to represent him during my freshman year. Palkia was my first since since General Grievous started in 7th grade. I still wear Palkia’s colours on the day of the anniversary when I caught him, every year when possible.

But sadly, the happiness did not last. Enter my sophamore year, things started to really get worse, where I felt like I was forced to hide my passion once Palkia entered my heart; I was a passionate fan and soon, I could no longer show it out of fear of what began to happen.

I had a cute little Pikachu keychain on my purse, just so I could have my love for Pokemon with me wherever I go; you know, like right now how I have KISS & Optimus Prime dangling on my purse, but since myself and no one else around me were adults, such a thing like respect didn’t exist.

In Math class, one of the guys who was always trying to act cool, (much to my disgust) took notice of that little Pikachu keychain and started talking to me about it. It flattered me at first so I participated, but when he brought his other friends into the conversation I became worried. I had no interest in befriending these kids, even if they did grow up with the anime or the games. I did not trust any of them, but it was too late.

The following days after that, I couldn’t go anywhere on my lunch break in the two campuses my high school had without people muttering “Pokemon sucks” every time I walked by. It happened when I walked past people smoking by the crosswalk, outside the cafeteria, and even in class. The guy who saw my keychain must of spread the word to his large group of friends to taunt me for my interest, when in reality, all those people probably refuse to admit that they grew up with Pokemon, and are ashamed to share it because it’s not “cool” or “mainstream”. I don’t know how it happened, it could have circulated through all his friends on Facebook, but I couldn’t stop it. The good news is they never said it to my face; it was just whenever I walked by but the bad news is it happened almost everyday.

You might ask, how is this bullying? Most people have been bullied for their race, sex, disability, etc. in high school. Not me, I was bullied for having different interests than everyone else and because I was different overall. High school is full of a bunch of xenophobes who don’t like anyone who is different while they try to fit in. One of my science teachers actually took this seriously once she noticed it. So things slowly began to stop as I started to ignore it.

However, it wasn’t just people simply saying that Pokemon sucks. Some people tried to ask me if I liked Pokemon to deliberately start conversation and then say something mean about it. No, I am not paranoid when I say this; but sometimes in some of my classes, people would deliberately talk about Pokemon out of the blue if I was present in the room. To me, it sounded like they were trying to get my attention, rather than because they felt like talking about it. They probably only talked about it when I was there to see what happened, and I thought “Jesus Christ, how many people know about this?”

In 11th grade, someone sitting a few rows behind me in biology class had recorded something on his cell phone, and whenever he played it, it said something negative about Pokemon. Everyone else was oblivious to it, except me, and the moment I heard it, I knew it was another attempt so it took some persuasion towards my teacher to get it to stop.

It wasn’t until the 11th grade when the taunting started to die down, after Transformers started to become my new passion but in spite of all of the hard times I had ignoring all those taunts, and holding back tears, Pokemon still remained important to me. I’m glad no one taunts me about it anymore and I’m at a stage in life where people respect you for having different and uncommon interests.

After playing my way through Platinum, SoulSilver (which was cool but I got bored of it really fast because there isn’t much to do in those two regions, but catching Lugia was fun, and I loved having the first Pokemon in my party in front walking behind me no matter the size and type.), White, Black 2, X (one particular thing I loved about X was that you can pet and feed your Pokemon, so I was so happy when I transferred my legendary party over from Black 2 over to X!), I made my big comeback as a fan last Christmas.

That’s right, Omega Ruby. The moment I saw it, I knew I just had to play it to relive my childhood of playing the original Ruby. So many things had changed once I started it. The game corner in Mauville was no longer there and the city was surprisingly bigger. Pokemon contests are more fun to enter now as well. But there’s plenty more to do than just that. I was able to find the Master Ball again, but this time I didn’t use it on Groudon. But confronting Groudon this time was even more exciting!

 Groudon’s badassness just went up over 9000! It’s Mega Evolution almost but not the same thing; Primal Reversion. After I succeeded in capturing him, it was a blast to have my beloved Groudon fighting alongside of me again. He’s the one who helped me nail the Champion!

After that, came the Delta episode and I got to relive Rayquaza too!

Now that is definitely the most badass Mega Evolution I have ever seen! When I fought him, I wanted to save my Master Ball for Deoxys but when Rayquaza was becoming tougher to fight, I ended up using my Master Ball on him. The coolest thing ever, was flying with him into space to stop the incoming asteroid, and when we destroyed it….Deoxys came out! Sadly, I never caught him because he was a level 80 and none of my Pokemon were strong enough! So, I ended up defeating him. Now, I wasn’t really in love with the story from X so I sold that game. I’d say, Hoenn and Sinnoh are the regions I have the most fun in. Am I done with Omega Ruby? Not yet! I still have to check out the Mirage Spots; who knows, some legendary Pokemon I want may be lurking on them and they might have Mega Evolutions. I’ll admit I was quite surprised that you meet Latios on your way to Fortree and he automatically joins your team after you help him, no battle needed! So great bonus! Shortly after that happened, I returned to where I met him, found Latias there, battled her, and then caught her.

I also started collecting Pokemon cards in 10th grade. I bought 3 or 4 packs every time I went to the comic store, and I happen to have a few legendary pokemon that I like in my collection. I had like, three Regigigas so I gave my Level X one to a friend of mine. Some I even bought individually like one of Palkia I saw, and got two other Palkia cards from friends, who surprisingly never asked for a trade in return.

One time, I also bought a Level X Dialga and then traded it to my friend who gave me her regular Dialga. I have three of Deoxy’s forms except his speed one, and my friend traded me her Rayquaza. I don’t have all my favourites in my collection, unfortunately I am missing Groudon. My collection of cards sits on my bookshelf in a binder next to my collection of Chaotic cards in another binder.

I haven’t added to those two collections in years, but there’s no way I’m giving them away.

I have a few other Pokemon trinkets as well, besides my Palkia plush doll (which I also plan on keeping), and my Palkia earrings, I have three little figures of Dialga, Palkia and Giratina (The Giratina one came from pre-ordering Platinum.) I can’t believe I forgot to mention them in my entry about what my action figures mean to me! I’ve also got a poster of Dialga & Palkia in my room. Aya, you can tell that Sinnoh is my favourite!

So, that’s the untold story of my life as a Pokemon fan so far, and it continues to go on. What’s next? Well, I don’t know. Even if the next Pokemon games that come out do not appeal to me, I’ll never stop being a fan. Sure, I wasn’t in to the anime but I am a fan in my own way. Besides, I’m not crazy about Ash due to the fact that he’s forever 10 years old and sometimes gets close to my favourite Pokemon.

Will I catch em all someday? That depends if I actually decide to pursue that, but trust me it’s not gonna be fun working on it all the time. But I have considered doing legendary hunting in Omega Ruby! But I haven’t even started it yet!



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