I have neglected my journal for LONG ENOUGH! I've been excited about a few things recently, so I decided I wanted to talk about them all in one place because why not!
For the first time in TEN YEARS I was able to travel to the Pokemon World Championships, which was held in Nashville, TN from August 24th-26th this year. While I was there, I was able to meet up with some YouTube friends who I've known for a few years, so that was truly special. I spent the weekend playing lots of Pokemon, watching lots of intense battles, hanging out with friends, and eating fun food. Going to Worlds reminded me of what I love most about the Pokemon community. Everybody I played with, waited in line with, and talked to at the phone charging booth was so incredibly nice. You can strike up a conversation with literally anybody in the main hall and be smiling by the second sentence you share with them. I was able to share a beer with and learn from previous world champions, shake hands with Pokemon developers, and complete Ho-Oh Pokemon Go raids in record times. In the 2019 Pokemon season, I'm going to try my best to attend as many high-level events as possible so that I can spend more time enjoying the atmosphere I have been missing out on for such a long time.
If you want to see more of the first couple of days of that experience, here is a video! I'm still working on the next part haha.
This past Saturday, I finally had the pleasure of going to a Mountain Goats concert! I've been listening to them pretty consistently since about 2010 after hearing about them on a Vlogbrothers video. Their music is very therapeutic in many ways, and I've spent a fair number of hours yelling to "No Children" to help myself deal with hard times. On Saturday, I was finally able to shout the lyrics back at them and it felt like I was on another plane of existence. The feeling in the crowd was absolutely electric when we were all singing "Up the Wolves," "Cry for Judas," "This Year," and "The Best Ever Death Metal Band in Denton" in unison while the man who wrote the songs was singing right in front of us. I feel like Mountain Goats songs become a little different when they're played live in front of a crowd that is singing them with the intensity that John Darnielle is also bringing to the table in the studio recordings. Beyond the wonderful music, I was also able to finally get some Mountain Goats merch, including a bag that says "I'm hardcore but I'm not that hardcore" (as heard in "The Grey King and the Silver Flame Attunement") that I love so so much.
It's rare that multiple life-enriching events like these happen in quick succession, and I'm so grateful that I was able to experience them. After some weirdness that has been occurring in my life, I really needed some time to enjoy events that make me feel alive and allow me to surround myself with genuinely awesome people <3
In video game news, I've been really enjoying playing WarioWare Gold recently! WarioWare games are the epitome of weird Nintendo magic, and I'm so glad they continue to exist. This one even has a minigame called MEWTROID in which you control a cat rolling on its back shooting aliens! Apparently it was in WarioWare Twisted, but I never owned that game so I'm glad I am able to experience it now :'D
I also bought a used Pokemon Diamond from eBay when the 4th gen nostalgia was sneaking way too much on me to ignore any longer. It has been a BLAST to play 4th gen again. I forgot how many fun extra things there are in this game. We've got gym badges to polish, fossils and spheres to excavate, ball seals to affix, Pokemon to catch only when certain Pokemon GBA games are inserted, and Poffins to make. I miss when there was so much extra stuff to do in Pokemon games. Yes, I suppose you could call these little things time wasters, but MAN ARE THEY FUN. I think they really add to the experience, even if you only try them a few times. I feel like the extra fun things in games are the things we talk about more than the main storyline sometimes. Breath of the Wild was so captivating because there was so much silly stuff you could do. People joke about not even caring about Ganon because completing more shrines than necessary to beat any boss ever is more fun. I want more games to have that sort of feeling.
Thanks to anybody who read to the end of this journal entry! ♥ Please let me know the things that you've experienced that have made you feel happy this year, and let me know your favorite games that have extra fun things that really make them special!