Friday, July 14, 2017

News:: The Adaptation: Pokémon Cards for Pornography

Pokémon cards made me a man. I don't mean to overstate this, but the card adaptation of the game formed me into a grizzled nine-year-old boy with a hunger for titties. The government, newscasters, and grandmothers who live in constant states of agitation and panic were always right. Video games corrupt the youths. They're a dangerous influence. They turn us into maniacs and degenerates. And it all starts with Pokémon.

Pokémon Yellow came  with a brand new Gameboy Color I had received for Christmas. This was something special to me, unlike all the other games I had, because it was totally my own. My brother couldn't take it away from me. My family couldn't use the TV and tie it up. It was mine in a private and intimate way. Pokémon got closer to me than anything else, and we spent many sleepless nights in my bed together, until the batteries went dead, as if I was some sex-starved cat lady with a vibrator. In other words, it was everything a child could possibly want.

Naturally, I absorbed all the spin-off media related to the games. I watched the cartoon, and I played the card game. The card game was not much fun. It was overshadowed to a huge degree by the likes of Yu Gi Oh and even the Dragonball Z card game, but collecting the cards was fun, because I could keep my own private collection of monsters in a binder. A little black binder, close to my heart. I would open it for my friends and lie about the rarity and value of monsters like Coughing and Gravler. These cards made me feel like someone special.

I didn't even know they were corrupting me.

I grew up in a small town called Shamokin, trapped in the coal regions of rural Pennsylvania. As children, all our parents worked full-time jobs they hated for little money and were gone long hours. We were born latchkey kids. We spent most time alone and unsupervised, wandering around together under strict orders to not return home until sundown. So, we were free. And one day, while we hung out on a stoop, and I showed off my Pokémon cards, a friend, Jared, offered to trade me for them. And what he offered awakened a secret, indoctrinated need within me.

He offered thirty porn magazines in return for my binder. He was a year older than me, practically an adult, with a dark look to his eyes and a crooked smirk. The deal I made with him felt like one with the devil himself, and I wanted to sign my bloody name in this devil's book. Each card squeaked to me, "Do it, Vaddy. Do it. You want the titties. You need the titties. Think of how dangerous, how exciting." Pikachu made a jerking motion and winked at me. The way he whispered, "Pikachu" sounded like, "Go ahead and stare at some naked women. You're ready." And if Pikachu thought it was right, then who was I to argue?

We stalked to Jared's grandfather's house. The old man saw us through the kitchen window in his sweat-stained wifebeater, white hair shooting in spikes, and he shouted, "You better not go down to the basement. I told you to stay away from there."

Jared just kept walking, ignoring the old man. He taught me a very important lesson that day: If you ignore the rules, then they don't exist. We ventured into the basement, and the old man never followed

And in the center of the dark concrete room, strewn with old bicycles, tools, and junk scraps stood a massive chest of wood and metal. A genuine treasure chest, tall as any of us. An excitement bloomed through me. If there was anything that video games teach us, it's that nothing bad ever comes out of a treasure chest. Jared threw it open, and I unzipped my book bag.

I plundered the depths.

It was so dark that I could barely make out the covers of each magazine. An anxiousness pulsed in my chest. The old man knew we were down here. He could come barging in at any second. We could be caught. We'll all get in trouble. No matter how many I pulled up, none made a dent. This chest was an endless supply of porn. It was a thing of beauty. I shoved one after another into the bag, quickly counting to thirty, and we made a hasty escape, limbs shaking with the rush of adventure.

We ran to the woods to hang out and review our plunder while sitting in the hold of an abandoned boxcar on an overgrown stretch of railroad tracks. Each was great, full of nude beauties. Looking over each one, I thought, "You're mine. I captured you. I own you." Each one of these women was like a Pokémon, a FuckMe, only able to scream their names in a desperate, needing manner. My favorite was of a woman being bent over a car by a man dressed as a police offer with a massive erection. This was a good day.

The sun began to set, so I shouldered the bag to make my way home. All the magazines weighed down my back, and the summer heat drew streams of sweat down my face. Along the way an old woman sitting on her porch saw me and called out, "Have some heavy books, huh?"

I tried a small smile and said, "Yeah."

I lied to an old woman. Right to her face. She'd die before me, and I lied to her. She had nothing over me. I was her superior in every way. I was strong and young and supple and smart and lugging hundreds of naked women on my back. And all she had was a plastic chair and a tall boy of Bud. If she saw what I was carrying, it would kill her. Knowing that made me feel strong and good, the same way I imagine a Pokémon trainer would feel around an old woman, knowing that he could sick any of his monsters onto the woman and murder her in a second.

I got home and threw the bag into my bedroom before my parents got home. For the first few nights, I was in bliss, looking over my collection in secret and whispering their names. But soon, the pressure mounted. I knew my parents would find out. I had nowhere to hide a treasure trove like this, so great and of mass and girth, that wasn't obvious. They would find out. They would know. I would get in trouble. Dreams haunted me of the police man bending me over a car, and I'd scream and fight against him as he shouted, "Say uncle. Say uncle."

There was no other choice. I had to throw them away. While cleaning out my room, I added them to a trash bag and tossed it on the side of the road. And I didn't regret it. The stress had become stronger than the joy. The deal with the devil was a bad one, and the Pokémon were true monsters for convincing me that it was a good idea. I stopped playing the games soon after, because as an adult who saw naked women, I realized that they were shitty games made for babies, and my tastes were too refined for them. It was all Turok from then on out.

I learned nothing from this moment in my life. Eventually Yu Gi Oh took over my card obsession, and the internet took over my pornography obsession. That old woman died on her porch. I grew older, yet never really grew up, and even to this day I wonder if I'm not still a nine-year-old-boy playing games and chasing treasure troves of titties in the hollowed out, rundown Shamokin of my heart.


via destructoid