My Apology to Yoshi: Dinosaur, Pet, and Friend…and Scapegoat

Yoshi Yoshi

Dearest Yoshi,

The green one. I forget you others exist sometimes. Especially the yellow one—that’s very impressive, but my wife stomps around like that without a shell in her mouth.

We’ve seen a lot together. Been in the trenches, fought the good fight. Ha! Remember that time you spit out that shell and annihilated an entire flank of Koopa Troopas?

I remember when I first found you. I had left your home on Yoshi’s Island, traveling east toward that eyesore Iggy Koopa called a castle. You were in a mystery box. I was expecting an extra life or something, but I got so much more than that. I mean, having you has saved me countless times.

Yoshi Dinosaur Land

We immediately teamed up against a common enemy—me to save the princess of the Mushroom Kingdom, and you to rescue the Yoshis of Dinosaur Land.

But Bowser, as dumb as he may seem, is very good at constructing puzzles and obstacles. I wonder who does his interior designs. He made Dinosaur Land a treacherous place. (Unless Dinosaur Land was always this difficult to travel through.) He put enemies in our way, built bottomless pits that can’t be jumped, and made it all but impossible for us to achieve our goals.

But at what cost?

In order to get through some of those obstacles, I had to sacrifice the only friend I had on my journey: You.

Yoshi Falling

If an army of enemies was too much for us, they’d knock me off you before injuring me, giving me a chance to survive. When you ran away, I thought you were abandoning me, but at least you’d be safe. Then I find you again, trapped in an egg.

If I couldn’t get across a gap, all I needed to do was hop off you for that extra few feet. I survived, but you did not. I looked back the first time it happened and watched as you fell, helpless, down and down and down, screaming for help. After that, whenever I had to abandon you like that, I stopped looking back, and you started screaming obscenities. If I were you, I’d run away from me, too.

I just want to say that I am sorry. I didn’t need to kill you off all those times. Like on Cheese Bridge. I didn’t have to reach that second exit to get down to Soda Lake. Even though it helped unlock all the levels, I didn’t need to do it. (Also, Torpedo Ted sucks.)

Yoshi Star World

I could have unlocked Star Road, released your multi-colored brethren, and beat Bowser with his Mecha Koopas in under twenty minutes. I could have, but I didn’t.

Someone you love can only be kidnapped by the same douchebag so many times before you turn into a homicidal, warmongering maniac. I wonder if this is how Liam Neeson feels.

I wanted the Koopas to pay for what their master had done. So I marched on each land from the Donut Plains to Chocolate Island, and from the Vanilla Dome to the Forest of Illusions, all the way to the Valley of Bowser, nestled away by one of his ships from my last adventure. Level after level, I slaughtered the enemy and destroyed their castles and fortresses. All for Yoshi Coins and the chance to see Peach again.

Yoshi Pals

But to you, Yoshi, I am sorry. You’ve stuck by my side like a loyal dog, through my best and worst. You’ve even joined me on several adventures since then. You are even a better friend than Luigi. I mean, he thinks that just because he saved my princess, that entitles him to the kiss?

I’ve gotten better. I’ve wrangled in my ambition. If goals aren’t met, that’s fine as long as I save the princess and the worlds from Bowser’s tyranny.

I don’t even get mad anymore. I’ve come to expect that if I leave for a pack of cigs and a gallon of milk, I’ll come home to find that Peach has been taken again. You’d think Bowser would move on to an easier target.

Yoshi Bowser Peach

Well, I guess Peach is pretty easy. He always takes her when he wants to. But surely there are other princesses who don’t have Japanese video game characters/Italian-New Yorker plumbers coming to their rescue.

I mean, I wouldn’t go out of my way to save Daisy.

Does that make me a bad brother?

I guess what I’m trying to say is that I love you, Yoshi, no matter how many times I get you killed.

Yours Truly,

Me halfway pretending I’m Mario

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