pokemon

Let’s talk about Pokemon Go. As I’m sure you’re already aware, Pokemon Go is a free app that launched a little over a week ago and allows you to catch Pokemon in the “real world” through your phone — meaning that as you walk around your neighborhood with your phone out, a Pokemon will appear in the camera, and you can catch it by “throwing” Pokeballs. It’s already more popular than Twitter and Tinder.

If you’re in your teens, twenties or early thirties now, there’s a good chance you were obsessed with Pokemon as a child — I was. I never quite got the hang of the cards, but I spent countless hours playing Pokemon Yellow on my Gameboy Color (I had the transparent purple one, which was SO COOL), i saw the Pokemon movie on opening weekend (the moral about the ethics of cloning is INTENSE for a kids’ movie, you guys), and I watched the TV show every weekend. I have the same name as one of the Pokemon Gym Leaders, so I felt extra special. In short: If you’re a #millennial, you’ve probably daydreamed about catching Pokemon in real life — and now you can, with your phone.

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Erika animeErika, the Pokemon gym leader

It seems like the world has gone crazy with Pokemon Go. You’ve probably seen people walking around your neighborhood, stopping randomly in their steps to catch Pokemon. If you’re playing it yourself, you may have narrowly  missed being hit by a car.

There are stories about two men who fell off a cliff while playing Pokemon Go, a man whose house is a chaotic Pokestop, a man who was caught cheating on his girlfriend through Pokemon Go, a woman who is marketing herself as a professional Pokemon Go trainer, muggers who are using Pokemon Go to lure their victims to them, two people who have stumbled upon dead bodies while playing Pokemon Go, and people who are inappropriately catching Pokemon at Auschwitz and the Holocaust Museum and Arlington Cemetery and at funerals. There are essays about how Pokemon Go is helping people cope with depression and anxiety and agoraphobia and autism. It's also helping people simply get out and exercise more.

We’re living in a whole new, Pokemon-filled world.

Pokemon Go is very silly and it drains your phone battery, and there are some very real concerns about Pokemon Go that have been raised.

But the nostalgia factor is just too strong for me right now. I want to be the very best, like no one ever was. I gotta catch ‘em all. Call me Erika Ketchum.

I’ve gotten a few other BUST staff members into Pokemon Go, and I’m trying to recruit more. I’ve been typing away all day this week with my Pokemon Go app open and my phone charger plugged in. Our offices are in an area of Brooklyn where Pokemon pickings are slim — my friend who works in Midtown Manhattan has caught SO MANY RARE POKEMON IT’S NOT FAIR AGHH.

PokemonI CAN'T FIND A PIKACHU

Anyway, here are the Pokemon I’ve caught in the BUST office so far:

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2 Zubats
3 Pidgeys
2 Rattata
1 Spearow

Here’s a photo of Pidgey with our giant BUST cover. I posed this one, it took some time.

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Here's a Spearow perched on the back of senior designer Meredith's chair:

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What’s the best Pokemon you’ve caught so far? 

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Erika W. Smith is BUST's digital editorial director. You can follow her on Twitter and Instagram @erikawynn and email her at erikawsmith@bust.com.

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