Walking With Pete: My Guilty Pleasure… Pokémon Go

In today’s episode of Walking With Pete I talk to you about my new recent guilty pleasure, playing Pokémon Go.

Walking With Pete: My Guilty Pleasure… Pokémon Go

G’day guys and welcome to this late night episode of Walking With Pete, at least, it’s a late night for me. It’s like 11PM and I’m just having a walk in ah… Princes Park, which is a really really big park near Melbourne University in the city of Melbourne, obviously, Victoria, Australia. And I’m walking around here a little bit ashamed, a little bit embarrassed, but at the same time a little bit content because I’m playing the game Pokémon Go. I’m sure many of you will have heard of it, if not all of you, and I’m sure that among our listeners, among my listeners, that there will be some people who play the game, who’ve tried the game and didn’t like it, and then a bunch of people who will absolutely hate the game, but more recently I’ve been playing it while I’m going for walks just because it’s kind of fun and I guess it’s a little bit nostalgic for me. I used to play this game when I was a little kid. So, I think the first game came out when I would’ve been… probably 10 years old, maybe 11 years old, when I was at primary school, and um… So, that would’ve been like 1995, 1996, and I remember playing the very first game and absolutely adored it. I mean I loved it. It was really cool, you know, walking through this world and… and finding all these little monsters and animals, especially because I was always into animals and evolution. So, the whole Pokémon, different animals, and evolving “thing” really, you know, inspired me, and I loved…. I loved playing that game. Anyway, so, I’ve been playing that game recently, and getting a bit addicted to it, but it’s kind of good. I like it for a few reasons and I thought I’d go through them with you. Firstly, it’s kind of motivation for me to get out of the house more, because for those of you who don’t know, Pokémon Go is this game where you effectively use a GPS map of your surrounding location. So, wherever you live, whether it’s in Brazil, whether it’s in Paris in France, whether it’s in um… America, somewhere in the US. It doesn’t matter where, you know, if there’s a GPS map for it you’ll be able to play this game on your phone. So, it’s on your phone and you get a map of your surrounding area. I don’t know if it’s… probably a circumference of something like a kilometre or so that you can see on your screen, and all the streets and everything, and you walk around and based on where you go, different areas like parks or schools or cemeteries, there are different kinds of Pokémon for you to catch. And so, it’s very much like the old game except that you have to get out of the house to play it. So, you can’t do it from home. You can’t walk around using your phone, you know, you can’t walk the little guy on the phone around unless you’re walking. So, the GPS tracks your movement, which is another story that some people like or don’t like about it. But… so, I like it because of that. It’s incentive for me and I’m sure many other people to get out of the house. I haven’t been walking this much in a very long time. And at the same time as being able to walk and get out of the house it um… allows me to also listen to my podcasts um… for language learning while I’m walking around. So, at the same time as playing Pokémon I’m walking around and I’m… I’m listening to podcasts like Francais Authentique or Brazilian Podclast… ah Brazilian Podclass I want to say, um… in order to practice my French and Portuguese. So, I’m killing three birds with one stone, you could say in English. So, there’s that English saying, “To kill two birds with one stone”, to get two things down in a single effort, sort of thing, you know, doing one thing, one action gets two results. This way I get to walk, I get to practice my languages, and I get to play Pokémon. So, three things and one stone, even though one of those things, playing Pokémon, isn’t exactly productive. Also I kind of like it because I feel, I feel like it’s made outside, the outside world, a lot safer, you know, um… and I don’t know if many of you will have… who like this game and play this game, will have noticed or have thought about, but at least in Melbourne, where I’ve been playing it, now I notice that not just me, you know, I’m not the only one who goes out late at night to walk and play this game when no one else is around, or at least, I think no one else is around. Now when I go out at night there are actually quite a lot of random people that, you know, I don’t know, complete strangers you would say, walking around playing exactly the same game, and going to the same areas, you know, so there are different things like gyms and what are called poke-spots that are on the GPS map marked out, that you can go to in order to do certain things in the game. And it’s actually bringing people together to sort of the same locations. I mean… and for better or worse, we say in English, you know, it could… I’m… I’m sure I’ve heard stories about it being used inappropriately by people wanting to rob people, you know, you could potentially wait at these spots to… to rob people who come by in order to play this game. But at the same time I feel like there are a lot more friendly, nice, um… young… young people just walking around late at night, even during the day, you know. The park near where I study at the museum used to be pretty much completely empty during the day, you know. People would walk to and from work to go get lunch, you know, they’d walk through the park or they would just go for a quick walk at lunchtime, or you’d see them going home after work, or coming to work in the mornings, but now it’s just ridiculous. It’s absolutely ridiculous. I go for a walk at lunchtime with one of my other friends, or actually a whole bunch of other friends at the museum who play this game. Man I feel like such a nerd, but… it’s just… don’t tell anyone guys. OK? Don’t tell anyone. You’ll ruin my reputation. But, so, I’ve been going out and playing this with my friends, but there are so many people, literally hundreds, I would say hundreds of people during the day in the park around where I study at the museum in the city. It’s just ridiculous. So, many students, people just talking, you meet complete strangers and you can just chat to them, obviously because you have something in common that you can talk to them about, the game, whereas, previously if you came across someone, if you meet someone who’s a complete stranger in the park, you don’t have anything to kind of connect on, and… and sort of jump past the fact that you’re both strangers, whereas, obviously if you have a dog or something and both of you have dogs then you can start talking. If both of you play Pokémon then you can start talking about that, but if you’re complete strangers normally, and there’s you know nothing to really comment on or talk about, it’s a little more awkward to start a conversation if you would even want to start a conversation with a complete stranger. Anyway, so they’re some of the reasons that I think this game is kind of cool. There’s been a little bit of hate. There’s been a little bit of hate from some people, you know, saying that people aren’t taking any notice of things like crossing the road and, you know, there’s people getting hit by cars and stuff like that, but to be honest I think phones have always sort of had that effect on people where it may’ve elevated it slightly more recently this game because it’s just gone absolutely viral, everyone seems to be playing it. There seems to be literally more people playing this game than not playing this game nowadays that I see out and about. But yeah, so, I don’t think there’s… that’s really a solid argument against it but yeah it is understandable at the same time. I do find myself having to look at my surroundings quite a bit and make sure I look up and you know don’t cross the road while look down at my phone. Anyway. So, that was one thing. I thought I would mention it and give a shout-out to any other players that are playing the game at the moment ‘cause it is a bit of a guilty interest of mine at the moment, and I’m probably playing it more than I should be. But at least not too I’m killing… killing four birds with one stone I could say, because I’m actually out here making a Walking With Pete episode for the podcast that I wouldn’t otherwise be making but for this game. Because I’m out here playing this game… and I’m watching a possum run right at me. There’s a brush-tailed possum running right across the path here towards me and running up a tree. So, yeah there are a lot of possums out in this park that I see at night as well. Anyway, yeah, so I’m glad I’m out here making this podcast for you guys. Um… I’ll leave it there, and I’ll chat to you soon. Hope you guys are doing well and yeah, don’t forget to leave a comment or say hello on Facebook if you want to chat. I’m trying to get a lot more… a lot more of a conversation sort of happening there so that we can, you know, get into discussions but I guess I need to come up with things that are more interesting to discuss. Anyway, chat to you soon guys. All the best!

Vocabulary

For better or worse

  • Whether it’s a good thing or a bad thing.

A complete stranger

  • Someone who you don’t know.

To go viral

  • To spread quickly and widely among people (often on the internet), e.g. like a virus.