He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. Is not life a hundred times too short for us to bore ourselves?Sonic the Hedgehog,
You can't catch what you can't see.
Sonic the Hedgehog,
He's going to make Mobius free.

But freedom is fleeting, and in the case of Sonic Riders, ephemeral. I think of Miyamoto-sama and the sweat from my palms drips down my Super Potato bag. Poison! I am holding poison! I recognize myself by all that Miyamoto has created, and yet here I have the antithesis of all things Mario in my possession. I remember the nights spent loitering in front of Nintendo's Japanese Headquarters, coughing loudly whenever a middle-aged Japanese man walked by. Perhaps one of them would be Miyamoto, and surely he would recognize a gaijin such as myself. We would exchange pleasantries, and then he would take me to his creative den, where together we would finally create the sequel to Doki Doki Panic that discerning gamers like me have longed for since the original Famicom game was butchered into the abomination known as Super Mario Brothers 2. But, this will never happen, and as I chew on the end of my ponytail, I finally realize my dilemma. The hedgehog's dilemma. This is the POW block that shakes the very core of humanity.

"The closer we grow to each other, the more we hurt one another. This is the tragedy of humanity."

- Arthur Schopenhauer, Parerga und Paralipomena

Not necessity, not desire - no, the love of power is the demon of men. Let them have everything - health, food, a place to live, entertainment - they are and remain unhappy and low-spirited: for the demon waits and waits and will be satisfied.This is the reality of my life. Even if Miyamoto-sama and I were to meet, the melding of our creative minds would no doubt cause problems. I can see it now; I would casually bring up my hatred of the 6th dungeon of the perennial Super Famicom title, Zeruuda no Densetsu: Kamigami no Tri-Force, and Miyamoto-sama would kick a nearby monitor out of a window. As I would reach in my pocket to gather the shuriken I have on me at all times, I would question the credibility of assistant director Yasuhisa Yamamura. What would follow can only be described as an unmitigated bloodbath. This scenario is why Miyamoto-sama and I must never cross paths. But, even though we will never have the pleasure of sharing our Yan-Yan, I do share Miyamoto's spirit in my daily life. I use the Suupa Mario series and other games in my conversational English classes to teach my Japanese students the language I am - unfortunately - most familiar with. While they don't know how to say please, thank you, and other basic phrases essential for travel in the United States, they do know phrases such as "1-up," "fire flower," and "Dodongo dislikes smoke." The faculty members seem overjoyed by this, and whenever they see me, they always shout in excited tones, to which I respond with my favorite passages from Xenogears. I carry this enthusiasm up until the end of my classes, when I always shout, "Game over!" to which they respond, "Arigato, faggot-sensei," "faggot" being the Japanese pronunciation of "Luigi."

I am their Luigi.

I step off the train, thinking about my katana collection at home. Home. This is home. The city lights form what I finally understand. I can feel. I can feel the hybrid rainbow. I am almost out of Pocky, but there will be more, the flavors of which make up every color in this hybrid rainbow.

If only Japan had won the war.

I like Sonic Riders.

- tomithy rempers

– Bob "BobServo" Mackey

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