When social distancing started, I decided it was time to clean out my phone. I mean, I hadn’t played Hay Day™ since (probably) the seventh grade, but there it was, taking up almost 2 GB of data (this is so shameful, I know). With that awful, awful knowledge under my belt, I decided that everything had to go. Gone was my Airbnb app, which I downloaded only so I could look at expensive houses in the French countryside. Gone was Video Star—and with it, some horrifying footage from the sixth grade. Wattpad got the chop, too (yet again, I’m exposing myself here), and I finally got around to deleting Vine after years of hanging on to it out of pure nostalgia. In the dark recesses of my phone’s folders, though, I rediscovered a creation so powerful, so reflective of man’s destructive nature, that I projectile vomited right when I found it. It was something perhaps even more damning than whatever Greater Power it is that lies above us. It was Candy Crush.
For those of you unfamiliar with this godforsaken app, Candy Crush is a nauseatingly stimulating game where you try to get groups of like-colored candies into rows of three or more. It’s repetitive, it’s totally frustrating and I’m addicted to it.
When I first spied the app in my phone’s long-forgotten “games XD” folder, I was hit with a pleasant wave of nostalgia and decided to open it up for a play. This was my first mistake. The app tracks your progress, and I guess 13-year-old me had nothing better to do with her time than play Candy Crush all day long, because all of a sudden I was on level 562 of a game I had completely forgotten about. It was like when I walked into my first day of immersive French last semester not speaking a damn word and trying to fall back on my six years of public school Latin to help me out—a chaotic f***ing mess. At least I had the sense to drop that class, something I cannot say that happened with this app. Candy Crush has consumed me. It has bested me. I literally can’t stop.
At first, I was just driven by sheer frustration that I couldn’t master the game like my middle school self had, so I played until I felt I had the hang of it again. By then, I was thoroughly entertained by the game’s antics, so I decided to keep the app as something to do during the quarantine. This was my second mistake. The app quickly took over and destroyed my life.
I haven’t looked my family in the eyes for days out of pure shame and the fact that they’re bloodshot from staring at my phone screen until 4 a.m. every night.
The worst part about Candy Crush is that the game limits your lives. You can only have five lives at once, and each one takes 30 minutes to regenerate. That means you could blow through your entire reserve in seven minutes and then have to sit around for 23 more waiting for one measly life to come back. It’s totally dehumanizing. After day two of this bullshit, my patience wore thin, and I decided to start buying lives. I am not proud of this, but I believe that my excessive expenditure on Candy Crush lives might be enough to single-handedly restart the economy, so at least there’s that.
At first, I tried to resist the inevitable. I’d make myself stop after a few rounds of play, try and be productive, maybe tune into a few Zoom calls. The problem with this was that every time I relapsed into playing again, I felt guilty, which was no fun. I was in a slump. But then, something magical (terrible? idk you decide) happened: Candy Crush decided to give all of its player’s infinite lives for a week. All bets were off. I’ve now just decided to give in and crush to my heart’s desire, not giving a shit about whether or not this is a good use of time. My everyday schedule now looks like this:
9:30 a.m.: Wake up
9:31 a.m.: Check Twitter
9:40 a.m.: Candy Crush
10:30 a.m.: Breakfast while I crush
11 a.m.: Tune into Salar’s lecture, Candy Crush on the split screen
Noon: Take my dog for a walk, can’t stop thinking about her (Candy Crush)
12:30 p.m.: Me time! Candy Crush.
2 p.m.: Late lunch, whilst crushing, of course
2:30 p.m.: Absentmindedly completing homework, compulsively swiping on the crush
5 p.m.: Family “no phones at the table” dinner … 🙁
5:30 p.m.: Candy Crush 🙂
2 a.m.: Bedtime
I feel great 😀 everything is fine 😛 my brain is a shredded wasteland 🙂