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Aug 3, 2016

Did you know that the First Lady of the U.S, Michelle Obama, has been trying for years to get people exercising? Over a third of people in the U.S, including children, are obese. This is an epidemic, and a huge national problem which leads to all sorts of medical complications and expense. However, something has taken the nation by storm(1) which is getting people of all shapes and sizes outside walking, running, skateboarding, and biking. It's Pokemon Go. It has become a craze. The most unlikely(2) people, those who would normally be at home sitting in front of a computer, are out walking along the streets, or moving around in parks looking for Pokemon creatures. The game came out in July, and had 80 million downloads in the first week. It is a free game that is location based and uses augmented reality, which means a view of the real world with a touch of fantasy added to it. Players download the game on to their phones, they create an account with a personalized avatar, and then they move around looking for Pokemon. The aim of the game is to find, catch, battle, and train the creatures. So who are the Pokemon? They are cartoon characters that first came out in the late 1990's in a Nintendo game called Game Boy. Films, books, and cards also popularized them. They have names like: Greninja, Arceus, Mew, and Pikachu, and are generally very cute, blending the look of animals and fantastic creatures. Pokemon are trained by their human owners to battle other Pokemon and evolve. Thankfully it isn't a game that is violent or deadly, so it is appropriate for young people, and therefore a wide audience. If you think about it, it is a very involved game, with different levels and many different elements, and now the physical aspect of it makes it even more addicting. Two of my boys have certainly become quite addicted to it. My oldest son even walks around the parks with his group of friends at night, searching for the most valuable Pokemons. I can't see Pokemon Go losing(3) its popularity for a while. If that is the case, people large and small will be dressing up in warm clothes to find their creatures in the snowy parks in the winter.

1. 'To take something by storm' is to make a huge impact on something, a person, or a place.

a. The Harry Potter series took the world by storm.

b. The Beatles took the U.S by storm in the 1960's.

2. Unlikely means 'doubtful or not very probable'. However, it can also be used as an adjective.

a. Their house was in the woods in a very unlikely place for a home.

b. Out of the people I knew from school, he was the most unlikely to become a singer.

3. I can/ can't see .......+verb in gerund.

a. I can see him slipping and falling (prediction).

b. I can't see him calling back today; he never returns my calls.

c. I can see them missing the bus my two minutes; they need to hurry up if they want to catch it.

italki for practice with native English teachers!