Lifestyle & Culture

Pokémon What?

July 24, 2016




WHY IS IT THAT people are ready to hop on every passing bandwagon like it’s exactly the thing they have been waiting for all their lives? The latest one is a child’s video game, yet adults everywhere are losing sleep over Pokémon Go, something they play on their cell phones instead of doing other things like working or, as I mentioned, sleeping.

I have been reading about the fad for the last few days and I still can’t understand what would make normal adults become involved in such nonsense, many of them running around outside late at night in their pajamas, other than what I think of as the “lemming response.” A lemming is defined in the Urban Dictionary as, “A member of a crowd with no originality or voice of his own. One who speaks or repeats only what he has been told. A tool. A cretin.”

Another example of the lemming mentality is a new app called Prisma that takes normal photographs and alters them to look like paintings. This is the latest tool, the results of which will be showing up in the Facebook profile pictures of all your friends very soon, trust me. (I almost did it but stopped myself in the nick.)

Fads have been around since the beginning of time, like for example fire, surely the granddaddy of all fads. After the first caveman came up with it you can bet all the rest of them wanted some. Then along came the wheel, which was certainly an overnight success; I’m only guessing since I was not around for its inception. But I was for the Hula Hoop, which I thought was stupid even then and I was only like 10 years old when the craze swept the country in the late 1950s. At the height of it, more than 50,000 hoops per day were manufactured by the Wham-o toy company in California. The hoops traveled the globe, eventually dying out in the 1980s, but not before everyone and their Aunt Tillie (see photo) had given one a whirl.

And for what? Oh yeah, fun. Most passing fads are just plain dumb and net nothing useful for anyone except the manufacturer, who becomes an overnight billionaire. I just wish I could think up one.

— Andrea Rouda
Andrea Rouda blogs at The Daily Droid

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