I don’t remember picking up Pokémon Red, but it was probably at Walmart. Most of my games came from Walmart back then. Before Pokémon my Game Boy was something I picked up once in a while for a little Kirby Pinball or Mickey’s Ultimate Challenge*, but Red was the first game I could happily spend hours with. I brought the damn thing to high school with me and whipped it out at lunch and during Creative Writing class. I took shameless advantage of that Missingno glitch to build a beautiful L100 team. Eventually, despairing of ever catching ‘em all due to a regrettable lack of friends, I picked up a cheat device at a shady Japanese-merchandise store in the mall and cheated my way to that weird little certificate.
Pokémon Blue I picked up a year later, during a vacation with my cousin, a fellow video game enthusiast though he wasn’t a Pokémon freak. I got it with the express purpose of catching Mew, which I head heard through the grapevine was located under that truck at Vermillion Harbor. When I reached the truck, the cartridge glitched out and erased its own data completely. I probably still have that cartridge in storage somewhere, but it is, in its way, a vegetable.
Pokemon Yellow I never finished, because I loaned it to the twin brother of a guy I liked in junior year, and then the asshole moved away with his family without returning it to me.
All of this probably seems pretty depressing, but these are among my few happy memories of high school. I fucking love Pokémon and I always will.