I didn't have the cards. The few I have today were a gift from a friend. I'm not sure what came first to me. My dad was a gamer so he would have bought the game based on its popularity alone. I had the red version and my brother got blue. It didn't really matter but I was slightly jealous that my brother got the blue version because I liked squirtle/blastoise more. I probably had the game first and then saw the show. I had that and Tetris. Enough to keep me quiet during long car rides. At least he picked the best game of all time. And I guess there wasn't much of a need to buy other gameboy games when we had a Super Nintendo and a Sega genesis.
I was sick when I saw my first episode of Pokemon, and it sucked. It was the episode with the ghastly and the ghost woman, and then some days later I stumbled upon it again. The episode where he gets the grass gym badge. I didn't like that one much either, but it at least had more action. Again some days passed and I decided to watch it again despite not enjoying the past two. It was the episode with eevee. And I liked it a lot. Eevee has always been my favorite Pokemon since I saw that episode. After that I started watching it more regularly. It had its moments that were kinda dumb, but it was still way better then anything on nickelodeon, and Cartoon Network was only interesting when it was time for toonami.
Now in today's present I have most of the hand held games, a few of the gold plated burger king collectibles, a small deck of cards and Pokemon stadium 1 and 2 for N64. No I don't have much of a collection of Pokemon goods but I still consider myself to be an original Pokemon fan.