“Vidiot.” That’s the word my father-in-law uses for kids whose brains turn to mush after being consumed by video games for hours on end.
I’ve never been a “gamer.” Even when we had the original Atari, or Nintendo as children. I can’t say I’ve ever conquered Super Mario Brothers. Nor have I broken a sweat with the Wii Fit that we thought was such a great idea. The day it came out.
But recently, my children have discovered all of these new game apps on my husband’s phone. They wake up in the morning and immediately ask to play the games. And, since I’ve never turned down a few more minutes of sleep–and it keeps them quiet–I give in. But then, I feel guilty–like I should be reading to them to doing something constructive. So, I lay there in my soft, warm bed, and justify to myself that at least they are learning how to navigate today’s technology. Learning touch screens and how to move from one file to another. Although, my kids can already operate a remote control in ways that leave their Nanna speechless. I’m not proud of that fact. And I try really hard to minimize their “screen time” each day.
Until a few days ago … a day when my husband and I both had work to do, and the kids were fighting over his cell phone. He downloaded this app on my phone so they could each be occupied with the techno-sitter … Bubble Blast.
I have a confession to make. I’ve been mindlessly playing this game for days now. DAYS. And … I still do not know the object of the game. I don’t know if I’m trying for a high score or a low score. I don’t know if I’m trying to make all of the bubbles disappear or keep them coming to increase my score. I have no idea. And yet, I can not stop playing. I am officially a Vidiot.
It got so bad that I had to delete the app from my phone today. Because I can literally waste HOURS of my time playing this stupid game.
But then, my daughter had this dance class, and my son couldn’t sit still. So, with no other options to numb his mind as we sat there in the lobby waiting for her, I had to re-install the game. Less than six hours after deleting it. I think I need help. Is there an app for that?
I have to tell you … after a month of insanity that makes Charlie Sheen sound like a voice of reason, I sort of invite this brain break into my life. It’s kind of a relief to escape into a world of bubble breaking and not worry about projects or schedules or commitments. I guess I’ve unwittingly stumbled upon “Escapism.” And I didn’t even have to travel the country with my family sleeping in the Honda Element to discover it.
Tomorrow, we are minimizing video games. Because there has GOT to be more to life than this.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to beat my high score. I think.