Today I found out that Angry Birds isn’t just a thing for people with fancy modern phones – it’s available for free. On the computer. (My phone is 5 years old. I expect to be sending it off to kindergarden any day now.)
So I thought, “Hey! I could probably actually do this! And it’s probably wildly addictive enough to distract me from the pain of IRB paperwork!”
Now, I’ve always known I’m not a tactical genius: It was probably funny when my dad let me win at chess in 3rd grade, it was less funny in high school, and it wasn’t funny at all in college when I read entire books on chess strategy and still lost to my pot-smoking ex-boyfriend. (He was a World Studies major whose course load at the time consisted of “Old Time Banjo”, “Math For Poets”, and the eternal hope of his high school band finally making it.)
So: I can’t play chess, figure out the murderer in mystery novels, or even Law & Order (except for when they have a guest star, though that’s pretty much cheating). But I figured – hey, Angry Birds isn’t chess. It’s a game that my 3 year old niece loves. It’s clearly a mainstream thing that I should be able to do.
I suspect there’s two possibilities here: Either 1) this is an easy, relaxing game for which I honestly do not possess the required angle estimation skills, or 2) this is a sneaky, frustrating game that sucks you into its evil vortex of self-doubt by daring you to keep trying until you accidentally hit the right angle by pure chance, at which point you will foolishly move onto the next level believing that it’s all downhill from here, I’m finally getting the hang of this! (Note: No.)
It’s not the harmless “chocaholic” kind of addiction. It’s the kind of addiction that leads to bad places, like when a prohibition-era alcoholic with limited options discovers he still has access to antifreeze.
(I guess the Antifreeze/Angry Birds analogy breaks down at the point where one gives you metabolic acidosis with an anion gap and a classic appearance on renal biopsy, while the other just gives you some eye strain and the inexplicable urge to rant to the internet.)
(Yeah, I know – Angry Birds and renal, on a Friday night? I have no excuses. I just party hard like that.)