Dear Candy Crush Saga,
God damn you.
God damn you for all the times I’ve gotten ready to go out to the store and found my wife still in bed, twiddling away at another one of your levels.
God damn you for all the phone calls I’ve had to make blaming my tardiness on traffic, while the real cause was your timer coming up at the worst possible time.
God damn you for every time I’ve had to discreetly nudge my wife under the table so that she’ll put you away and actually engage in the conversation.
But most of all, god damn you for making me realize how terrible it must have been to live with me while I was playing World of Warcraft.
Whenever I look up from a movie I’m excited to show my wife, only to see her face contorted in concentration, I’m transported back to 2007, me hunched over my laptop furiously tanking Scholomance while her weekly movie selection goes on in the background, unheeded.
For a brief moment I’m granted a window into what it must’ve been like for her to earn the moniker “WoW Widow,” a badge of shame worn by far too many people in the past decade. “Candy Crush Saga Widow” may not have the same ring to it, but it’s no less apt. I’ve become part of a depressingly inclusive club of people who’ve lost their spouses, girlfriends, close compatriots, or even co-workers to your nefariously crafted machine, and I resent you for it.
It’s not entirely that I mind the fact that she’s spending so much time doing something that seems pointless to me. In some ways, I appreciate the time it grants me to pursue equally empty pursuits. It’s not a financial thing either, as she hasn’t crossed into the realm of in-app-purchases yet. As tempting as they may be, she resolutely refuses to spend money on something that she got for free, which our joint bank account appreciates.
I’m sure there are people out there who have far more pressing reasons to hate you, just like there were people who completely lost their significant others to chasing the dragon in WoW. There are doubtless spouses who open up their monthly credit card statement to find hundreds of dollars being tossed at everything from Candy Crush Saga to Farmville, money that could’ve been put towards the down payment on a family home, or a much needed vacation to some sunny locale.
But when I look across the couch at my wife, her legs curled underneath her and the cat in her lap, face alit by another seemingly precise (but unfortunately lucky) move, I still feel like shit. Not because my life has spiraled into oblivion because of some cash-in iOS game, but because I’m finally paying up for the years of cold hearted apathy I unleashed upon her by being the main tank in a not-quite-hardcore-but-still-quite-serious raiding guild. Every ignored text message, hastily terminated phone conversation, and glassy eyed stare comes rushing back to me in a terrible cascade.
I feel like shit because I’m looking at myself.
So god damn you Candy Crush Saga for reminding me of what an asshole I used to be.
Now excuse me, I need to go make dinner while my wife beats level 87. How many levels are there in this game? Over 300 now?