Candy Crush Shame


I just spent 15 minutes tearing around my house in a middle aged rage, all because I could not, once again, locate my cell phone.

This is a common occurrence in our house.  I feel belligerent and rebellious about being tethered to this device.  At my age, I no longer want to care for a needy baby, especially one made of glass and costing almost as much as a human newborn.  My family constantly begs the question of me, “why do you even have a phone?”.

The problem with the misplacement comes because I keep the device on silent.  I do this because I secretly, and with much shame and self-loathing, play Candy Crush.


There, I’ve said it.  I keep it quiet so that when the game pops up, the music doesn’t erupt and alert my family to the fact that I’m not doing something selfless and focused solely on them.  I frequently sigh and mutter about lowering bills and checking grades when I’m on my phone.  I feign exhaustion from work emails.  I do not advertise on Facebook that I need lives.  I hide my secret shame.

But, like any other junkie scum, I have passed my addiction on to my offspring, roping Cricket in with the typical gateway words of “here, try this, you’ll like it”.  Only with her, alone in the darkened den, after the decent family has gone to bed, do I share the level of my evil (128).  Only to her can I talk freely of doughnut bombs and striped candy.  Only she understands my slurred “Divine!”. 


Game addiction is not new to me.  When I was first pregnant, miserably and surprisingly pregnant, a good friend gave me a Nintendo to keep me and my bags of Cheddar Cheese Ruffles company.  At this time, The Goose and I were living with my parents while we built a house.  When The Goose would come home from work, stunning in a suit and tie, there I’d be, glassy eyed and sweaty, trying to save Princess Peach.  I dreamed about eating mushrooms, the cartoon kind, not the Jefferson Airplane kind.  I couldn’t pass a flower without wanting to jump on it in hopes of super powers.  It became my job.


The Goose gave me a stern talking to.  He has no head for games, dare I say no ability, and was, understandably, shaken by the visual of the larger and pajama clad me, surrounded by chip crumbs and slamming my mothers pound cake.

I agreed to step away from the game.  Once I had been “clean” for 30 days and had moved into my new house leaving the machine behind, I came back to visit my folks walking in to find them in their matching recliners, jaws slack, knuckles swollen on the remotes, cigarette hanging from my fathers mouth with a two inch ash, while they battled the pills on Dr. Mario.  It’s a sickness.

Image   The Trophy Wife and I once shared a handheld Tetris game for 11 hours and over two states while driving back from south Florida.  We traded back and forth at rest stops and  gas stations, texting foul and taunting messages at each other, insulting the other’s mother and soul, while I eviscerated her with a high score that has yet to be challenged.  Yes, I said it, I still hold highest score.  And while the device has been dead for years, there is a picture that I can produce any time she gets mouthy about her abilities


For this reason I never got my kids any video games.  I know it’s a problem,  pale chubby kids sequestered away in dank basements, developing muscles only in their thumbs. The Boy played outside with fire and gas, knives and BB guns, like a boy should.  Each holiday I warily offered them one, but they always declined, The Boy asking for hatchets and explosives and Cricket, from age 3, asking for agendas, white boards and software, like any good nerd.

But now the problem has reared it’s ugly head with Candy Crush.  I just saw where a friend has publicly renounced the game and has sworn to abstain for 9 months, during the school year.  I’m not ready to do this yet, but after looking for my silent phone all over the house this morning, only to find it tucked inside my BRA, (This begs other questions about my rack that I am not yet ready to address.) I might be able to make the first step and admit I might have a problem.  Is there a 12 step for this?


Willy Wonka Super Scrunch


The Goose and I went away this weekend to do pre-spring cleaning at the lake.  Spring cleaning, for me, is a deep and labor-intensive operation, involving turning the entire house inside out and washing it.  It involves heavy duty laundromats, construction trailers, muriatic acid and bodily injuries.  It feels fantastic.

Usually, I spend a week, a glorious week, alone, cleaning from dawn until dusk, taking long runs, eating only what I want, whenever I want, directly from the container and then sleeping in the middle of the bed.


Cleaning with The Goose, aka Edward Scissorhands, is much less intensive and usually involves washing one load of towels and him trimming down one of my plants that should not be trimmed, causing me to cry.


This is really neither here nor there for my subject.  I’m just warming up.  On the way home, we like to meander through winding roads and rumble through thrift stores and flea markets.  We are single handedly trying to bring back the 70s and recreate our childhoods.  For instance, I love Hull china.  I get that it’s atrociously ugly.  It really is.   So much so that my mother threw all ours away when I was little, declaring it trashy.  My dad had bought it and he used it for our dinner every Wednesday night, when Mom was at choir practice.  It’s a great memory.  So, I snap up odd, ugly pieces at flea markets and I order it off Ebay.  I ordered so much one month that Cricket called it the “Hull of the Day” every time UPS came.  Same with anything plaid.  Thermoses, lunch boxes, bowling bags.  The Goose loves anything that reminds him of his Mamaw.  He recently bought tiny little snuff glasses like his grandmother would dole out thin, pulpless orange juice by the ounce in.  He likes pictures of Jesus holding sheep, collies howling at baby lambs and the Last Supper depicted in ceramic. He likes the jelly jars she would give him to hold the snakes he caught.  We have to be careful or we could actually veer into tacky…


All this reminiscing got us talking about our childhoods today.  Somehow, I brought up the delicious memory of the Willy Wonka Super Scrunch candy bar.  I can taste it right now, plucked from the racks of the Majic Market in Tucker.  I was never a candy kid and still don’t crave sweets often, but that candy bar was da bomb. He remembered Gold Rush gum, in it’s great little bag.  Also, Gator Gum, that tasted like Gatorade.  How ‘bout  that gum with the liquid center?  It came in a blue that exactly matched my turquoise Gloria Vanderbilt pants AND shirt.  I chewed it every time I wore them, just for the matching sensation.

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We talked about how great it was that there were, seemingly, no rules.  Kids today never get a chance to try anything without getting in serious trouble.  A kid in my day could do literally anything and never get more than a stern talking to.  I once knew a girl that confiscated and consumed the entire wheel of her mother’s birth control pills in the Plantation Skating Rink bathroom, for what reason we could never discern, and got nothing but a swat on the tee-hiney and a night in her room, without her 8 track. No trip to the hospital, no DFCS investigation, no psych stay.  Life was just simpler.  She grew up fine and, I hear, had no reproductive problems later in life.

No bike helmets, no seat belts.  My mother actually told me that if the car caught on fire and I was wearing a seat belt, I might not be able to get out, so probably safer to just not wear one.  My dad used to let me ride, on top of 235 bales of pine straw, going 82 miles an hour, around 285 in the back of his truck.  I think the basic rules of gravity and centrifugal force might just have been different then.

Image     In these politically upsetting times, it’s just too bad that things can’t be cleared up in an hour by Keith Partridge and his manager. (I know, ladies, just take a minute and look at him.)  I feel sure the Monkees would have a better take on war and foreign policy and I know Ponch and John wouldn’t be so hard on kids today, just trying to have fun and grow up.  I, for one know that if I could, again, eat my lunch from an I Dream of Jeanie lunchbox, everyday would be just a little bit better.  I suggest everyone slip on their mood rings and call their senator, their congressmen, their principal, for goodness sake, and propose a bill to just stop and turn things back a little, just to the 70s.

ImageOh, gosh, even though my new blog is BEAUTIFUL, leaving a comment, nice, hateful or otherwise is tricky.  It’s done with the little heart up there in the right hand corner.  Very sneaky, sis.