Sunday, Calfgrit8 challenged me to a game of Pokemon. We played and Calfgrit4 watched. I won, as usual. This was the first Pokemon I’ve played with him in several weeks.
Then last night, Calfgrit4 challenged me to a game of Pokemon. Now, CG4 has only the barest understanding of the game — he doesn’t know any of the rules, he only knows how the game looks when played. But he was giving me the smack talk for 20 minutes before we actually played.
“You’re going down!” he told me.
“My deck is going to beat you up,” he threatened.
He’s learned this kind of talk from his big brother. I don’t know where CG8 got this smack-attitude from — probably some of his friends at school. (I don’t talk game trash to my boys, like that. Not yet, anyway. When they get 12 years old, yeah, maybe I’ll give them some smack.)
A few days ago, CG8 and CG4 were playing a ball game in the backyard. CG8 gave the old “You’re going down!” smack, giving CG4 a thumbs-down salute at the same time. CG4, not one to back down from anything, shouted back, “I’m going up!” and gave a thumbs-up salute.
My Dialga Pokemon deck has become the terror of the house. Dialga has sort of become my signature Pokemon, and they know that’s the only card in my collection that I won’t trade. My Dialga has become their white whale.
So last night while we were playing, Calfgrit8 had to take over for Calfgrit4 because little brother just didn’t know what to do. But CG4 hung close and cheered his big brother on and gave me the trash talk. He considered himself playing by proxy. I was winning 5 to 1 (6 points wins), but then CG8 managed to defeat my Dialga. They both cheered and high fived each other. “In your face,” one of them shouted at me.
I got a good laugh out of it all, but I reminded them about good sportsmanship. They tried to reign it in, but their triumph was just too much to contain. They actually danced around the kitchen table for a minute. They had finally managed to beat down my great hero, and they wanted a parade like VE day.
And to make it even more exciting, they poisoned and confused my Level X Dialga with some basic green Pokemon I had never seen them play with before — Koffeen or something like that. They found that beyond awesome, “We beat Dialga Level X with a little Koffeen! Ha ha!”
I turned around and won the game 6 to 2, but it didn’t matter. They had beat Dialga, and that meant Daddy was bested, regardless of the actual game score.
CG4 told me with righteous certainty, “Now you’ll have to trade your Dialga to me.”
I didn’t respond to the demand right then, but he’s going to be sorely disappointed when I tell him that beating my Dialga in one game does not entitle him to taking my favorite card as a trophy.