It was several months ago that I first realized that every single person on the subway staring obsessively into their small smartphone screens were doing one thing -- eyeing a bunch of bright multicolored icons. At the time, I had no idea what was going on. Was this some sort of coded language everyone in the world had deciphered except for me? Something that told them -- in bright dots of orange, yellow, and blue -- the secret to eternal life? I finally mentioned it to someone and she said, "Oh, it's Candy Crush." Candy what?! But Candy Crush is the hottest game app right now. So hot that people are completely addicted to it -- especially women. And that's not necessarily a good thing.
According to the Daily Mail, 700 million Candy Crush games are played on mobile devices every day -- and most of those players are women ages 25 to 55. Apparently the appeal is that it allows you to forget everything else for a short period of time because you must concentrate on the game 100 percent.
I'm sure the candy icons help too.
But there is a downside. Lucy Berkley, a 44-year-old Candy Crush addict, told the Daily Mail:
My back became strained because I'd been hunched for so long over my iPad. I couldn't help it, it was so addictive. I call it "crack candy" because I imagine giving up is like trying to break a crack habit.
Besides her physical health, Lucy says she also ignores housework, her boyfriend, and even her young son, in her Candy Crush mania. She actually admits:
My son Ben, who is at boarding school, can't understand my obsession. I've been known to meet him off a train and rather than give him a hug I've said: "Just a minute Ben, I’m just getting on to the next level!"
Well, that's just great. Her son is already off to boarding school, and the times he's home, mommy prefers to pay attention to some digital candy figures. Somebody might need therapy in the future!
Lucy also admits she spends about $300 a month on the game. Wow. That's money she could putting away for Ben's university education. Or anything! Another woman, 40-year-old Jenni Weaver, says she is so addicted that she's played for 12 hours straight, and has forgotten to pick up her 10-year-old from school because she was busy trying to make the next level.
Ahh, Candy Crush kids. We used to call them "latchkey kids"!
Hunching over your iPad or cellphone, eyes glazed, mind zoned out, for hours straight -- it doesn't take a genius to figure out this is going to negatively impact your physical health, your finances (at least those who pay for the premium games), and your relationships. You know, the ones with real people?
If you must play Candy Crush, at least keep it to a minimum. But I don't see why anyone "must" play anything!
Do you play Candy Crush?
Image via David Guo's Master/Flickr