I’ll never understand when something unique, original, and nearly perfect just up and disappears or gets abandoned. There’s so much mediocrity that gets remade, revamped, and repeated endlessly that sometimes it feels like there’s no space left for something new and exciting. And so the question becomes, where did the original go? And why did it have to leave?
In elementary school I was best friends with a boy named James who was like my more normal, less anxiety-ridden half. We did everything together, hung out constantly, and I was totally in love with him but had no idea because being gay hadn’t been invented yet. We had a lot in common in terms of movies we liked, games we played, and our mutual curiosity/fear of the great demon Beetlejuice who we would try to summon with all of the lights off in James’s basement whenever we were bored and wanted to truly feel alive. It never worked but I think it’s because this was before cell phones were super popular and honestly maintaining a landline when you’re also working full time as a servant of the dark lord Beelzebub is probably pretty taxing.
One thing we were both mutually obsessed with was the game Golden Sun. Golden Sun was like if Final Fantasy was better and Pokemon was worse and then they came together like a Power Rangers Megazord and formed a perfect game that could finally kick Goldar’s ass. While James was better than me at every sport ever imaginable, I had him beat in the not-yet-invented-by-nerds category known as esports. Because of that he entrusted me with his copy of the game under the condition that I help him get past one boss. I agreed, took the game home with me, beat that boss, and then promptly lost his copy of the game into the deep cavern that was my room, because I’ve always been a very responsible person.
I had to think quick after I lost the game, which is really bad because that’s definitely not my strong suit. My strong suit is more in just hiding until all of my problems go away, which wouldn’t have worked in this case because James and I had played a lot of manhunt together so he knew all of my prime hiding spots. The only solution I could think of at that point was to give him my copy of the game, pretend I got him further than I originally intended, and then never speak about it again. And before you ask, no I didn’t consider telling him the truth because that would be stupid.
It took me until about a week after I gave him my copy of the game to remember that you could name all of the characters in the game, which presented a bit of a problem considering his were named after people he knew and mine were interchangeably named after Buffy characters and my favorite beanie babies. But he never brought it up so I’m just assuming he either never noticed or was too nice to call me out on it.
James and I lost touch in middle school and, although we shared a few classes here and there, we never really built our friendship back up. He became one of the jocks that people drooled over, I became one of the theatre kids that people avoided eye contact with, and Isaac from Golden Sun became a Smash Bros assist trophy instead of the fighter he rightly deserves to be because Nintendo abandoned the Golden Sun franchise and refuses to acknowledge their giant mistake. Get it together, Nintendo.
Ryan C. Robert is the writer of multiple comedy blogs, most of which are satirical and self-deprecating. He writes about his life in his personal essay series "Before Color," parodies cooking blogs in "Trish's Dishes" and posts writing prompts every single day.