It’s time for me to make a confession:
I love cats, but I hate the animated cat collecting app Neko Atsume.
I found out about Neko Atsume from my sister, who had seen it online, and then heard about it again from my best friend. They both said I’d love it, so I downloaded it. I played the “tutorial”, and then didn’t play it again until a few days later. I told some of my other friends about it, and they began playing it much more regularly than I did. Soon, my friends were sending me pictures of their yards, filled with cats and toys. I would go on the app and put some food out for my cats so I could contribute to the conversation; but really, if my friends didn’t talk to me about it, I wouldn’t play the game at all.
I have a routine in the morning. When I wake up, I go to the washroom, feed my turtle and turn on his lights, turn on my heater, and then turn on my phone. I check my notifications, reply to my text messages, check Instagram and Twitter if I have time, and then check the weather. Checking my social media is second nature to me – but I can’t bring myself to check Neko Atsume. Why?
As much as I love cats, I can’t bring myself to see the point of the app. You put out money and toys and animated cats come to your yard. When they leave, they give you money which you can use to purchase more money and toys to get even more cats. I wish I loved Neko Atsume, but I don’t.
When One Direction first became popular, many years ago, I told my friend that I liked them. “Who’s your favourite?” she asked, leaning in as if we were discussing a top government secret. That was back when there were five members of One Direction. I had five people to choose from. But I didn’t know all of the members’ names, much less who was my favourite. When I told my friend I liked One Direction, I meant that I liked their music – I didn’t really care about who they were as people.
Last year I was on a school trip, shopping for books for our library. I got into a conversation with one of the other students on the trip, and he made a reference I didn’t understand. Then he said, “Have you seen that Vine?” I hadn’t – I could count the number of notable Vines I remember watching on my fingers.
“No,” I told him. “I prefer to focus on reality.”
A few weeks ago, my friend was playing a game on his phone and he recommended it to me. “It’s so cool,” he said. “You basically text an astronaut and he has to, like, leave and come back.”
“How does an astronaut have time to text all the people using the app?” I asked.
This sent my friend into laughter. “Well it’s not a real astronaut,” he cleared up.
I paused. “So then what’s the point?”
A few months ago I took the Myers Briggs personality test and got INTJ. I disagreed with it – INTJ is supposed to be logical and good at jobs like analysts, statisticians, or engineers. I think I’m way more creative than analytical – I typically do very well on long answer questions on exams and tests but I tend to lose marks on the multiple choice because I think too creatively and interpret the questions and answers in different ways.
Grade 5 probability test. I was a mark off perfect because I said it was “unlikely” instead of “impossible” that humans could dig to the centre of the earth. Journey to the Centre of the Earth had just come out, and I hadn’t seen it but I had seen the trailer. If it’s possible in the movie, there must be some way to do it in real life too, I thought.
Grade 11 law exam. I lost a mark because I answered that trial by ordeal was the precursor to MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) instead of the precursor to proper trials. To be fair, I didn’t know what MMA was, only some type of fighting – but I knew that some forms of trial by ordeals involved physical tests (such as trial by fire, where the accused was to walk across boiling hot rocks. If their feet healed, they were innocent; if their feet didn’t heal, they were guilty).
When I showed my friend that I had lost a mark on that question, she’d laughed – it was supposed to be an easy one. I had made a jump in my logic, though – I’d linked physical fighting to ancient physical trials. If the question had been worded differently, I would have understood it since I knew what trial by ordeal was. My thoughts were simply too creative for a question with a choice of four answers.
You’d think that my creative mind would lend itself to things like games with inanimate cats and fangirling over One Direction, but it simply doesn’t. I don’t play games on my phone and obsess over boy bands – I just can’t see the point. Yet I often miss the point when I answer multiple choice questions. I like to think that I’m creative – I love writing fiction, making up stories and using my imagination to come up with solutions to problems.
I also love immersing myself in fictional stories – but when the stories deviate and become too far-fetched, I find myself tuning out. Even the short stories I write, though fictional, don’t involve what I consider to be fantastical elements. I think this all stems from my intrinsic interest in the world. I don’t need to obsess over a fictional world, because I’m endlessly curious about the one I live in and I find that I can’t relate to made-up ones.
Maybe I am a logical INTJ – or maybe I’m just a realistic creative. Maybe I’m an analytical person who simply gets tripped up by multiple choice questions. Or, maybe I’m a balance of creative and analytical. Either way, I’m not feeling the whole Neko Atsume thing – but I’m happy to announce that I now know the names of all of the members of One Direction.