How Can You Give What You Don’t Have?

The guy clearly warned you not to take the brown acid.  Your mother told you to ease up on the sweet stuff.  Now you're having flashbacks and you're diabetic.  You have no one but yourself to blame, Mr. Blow.  (Image from play dot google dot com)
The guy clearly warned you not to take the brown acid. Your mother told you to ease up on the sweet stuff. Now you’re a diabetic and having flashbacks. You have no one but yourself to blame, Mr. Blow. (Image from play dot google dot com)

I admit that I spend too much time on this blog making fun of people on Facebook.  Obviously, I’m on FB myself, or I wouldn’t be privy to the treasure trove of idiocy which shows up magically every few minutes.  I might not feel feel like taking the time to maintain traditional relationships with most of the “friends” I have there, but I’m okay with spending the handful of minutes it takes to feel superior to many of them.

If there isn’t sufficient fodder for my cynicism in the main section of the page, my eyes wander to the upper right corner where some friend or acquaintance will have just “liked” someone else’s photo or status.  No matter what time it is or what day of the week, another one of my friends will post a status which is at once noble and yet indescribably trivial.  I refer of course, to the following Facebook status gem:

“Joe Blow gave Life in Candy Crush Saga.”

(For those of you who think I have an actual Facebook friend named Joe Blow, please return to almost any of my previous blog posts and consider that I might be making that name up.  For those of you who might actually be named Joe Blow, my apologies, but I’m pretty sure you’re used to being the brunt of jokes by this point in your lives – feel free to hate your parents for their lack of both creativity and foresight.)

We just celebrated Mother’s Day.  Memorials and salutations dominated the landscape of Facebook as old photos of mothers and grandmothers graced the digital pages.  People who despised their mothers when I knew them back in Mrs. Benedict’s Social Studies class now took great pains to try to make it up to them by posting dog-eared photos of dear old Mummsy.  They proclaimed their mothers were the best mothers ever.  Their own children may have even proclaimed them to be the best mothers ever, thus creating an umcomfortable tableau for the medals ceremony.  Contrary to everyone’s claims, my mother is actually the best.  No wait…I’m changing my vote to my wife, she’s the best…no, I mean my daughter…no…no, I’m going to stick with my wife as the world’s greatest mother of all time.  Irrespective of whose Mom is the best, they all have one thing in common: They gave life.

I ache to know if giving life in Candy Crush Saga is similar to doing so in a delivery room or in the backseat of a cab on the shoulder of the Cross Bronx Expressway.  As a man, I’m already relegated to the sidelines of the birthing process as it is.  Despite my desire to know, I can’t bring myself to actually go play CCS .  I live in fear of what people will think of me if my status says that I’ve given life in there.  My bosses will instantly know that I have entirely too much time on my hands.  My wife (Best mother – ever!) will realize that I did in fact have time to pick up dog dookie from the yard, but chose instead to dawdle on the computer.  My kids will know that at least I’m not looking at fetish porn.  The icing on my cake of shame will be that my friends from 7th grade will know that I’m every bit as pathetic as they are.

I know it’s just another addictive app on Facebook, taking its rightful place in the Pantheon of Time Wasters, among such legends as Farmville and Mafia Wars.  Though I’ve never played CCS,  I’m going to go out on a limb an guess that it has something to do with crushing candy.  I imagine there are different degrees of squashing sweets.  Certainly it’s one thing to step on a lint-covered Wint-O-Green Lifesaver, and entirely different to drop a freight car full of Necco Wafers off a bridge.

Regardless of what the game actually entails, I take exception with the app creator’s choice of names.  It takes balls to name any game a saga, let alone one which revolves around smashing Root Beer Barrels and Atomic Fireballs.  It may be fun, and you may waste years of your life playing it, but that doesn’t qualify it as a saga.

The word “saga” can apply to nearly any batch of books written by James Michener.  These thick-as-a-brick tomes often span multiple generations and pivotal eras in history.  They may also include some heavy mythical stuff, like “Beowulf”.  If a film is made, it should feature saga-friendly actors like Tom Selleck and Richard Chamberlain.  Sagas still in book form can be found holding up the one corner of the coffee table where the leg was broken off during your parents’ lone attempt at a get-away weekend back in your teenage years.  In a bizarre twist, that ill-fated get-away weekend was to celebrate Mothers Day.

Paralyzed by the fear of looking ridiculous and already over-booked in more meaningful free-time pursuits, I guess I’ll never know the joy and satisfaction of giving life in Candy Crush Saga.  True to most trends, CCS will eventually run its course and be replaced by some other time-sucking app with a goofy name.  In just a few short years, people’s status update will show the latest news:

“Joe Blow just gave flames to his candles and Iced Layer 147 on his Cake of Shame”

44 thoughts on “How Can You Give What You Don’t Have?

  1. Apparently you are too good to play my favorite game on FB so I won’t even tell you it is “Blowing Smoke Up Matilda’s Dress.” It will be too difficult for a man of your caliber. You will never – never – never – never – see my name there because I use the alias of “Smokegets Inyour Eyes” which is very clever; even if I do say so myself. So go flame away on those of us who find FB games more productive than earning a living, changing the baby’s diapers or making supper for those we used to love. Toodle-oo. S.I.E.

  2. I’ve never allowed myself to even try Candy Crush, or Farmville, Mafia Wars or any of those Facebook games. It’s not so much that I think they’re stupid, it’s more that I can’t trust myself to not get really into them, and I just don’t have the time for such things. I’m never really one for playing computer games, but every so often I will get a bit hooked on one and then end up being so annoyed at myself for the amount of time I give them! I speak here mostly of Tetris, of Brickbreaker (on Blackberry), and Gold Miner. So it’s easier, and less time-consuming, to just kick back with you and mock the Candy Crushers instead!

    1. I’ve been pausing in a moment of silent remembrance and wondering what the proper etiquette is when one of my friends gives her life in CCS. I hadn’t stopped to consider that she was reproducing!

  3. I can’t wait to see the mother’s day tributes from the pieces of candy in Candy Crush Saga. “Thank you Joe Blow for giving me life!” — love Redhots

  4. I have friends obsessed with Candy Crush Saga. I tried it on the iPhone and after reaching the ‘free’ levels and being told to either pay for the game or connect to Facebook and take my involvement with the game public I decided it wasn’t worth it. There was no way I was clogging everyone’s news feed with Candy Crush bullshit.

    1. You’re right of course. Why cause information congestion in people’s news feeds with something as trivial as giving life, when you can show pictures of your kitten? I kid, of course.

      1. Have you seen my kitten? He is freaking adorable! Hahaha. I figure if I have to see my friend’s spawn then they can deal with a few of my cat photos.

  5. I wasn’t even aware there is an FB game called Candy Crush Saga, since I have blocked all notifications from all Facebook games. So now it appears as though all my FB friends don’t waste their time on any time-sucking FB games, but instead concentrate their energy on the real-life activities like raising babies and eating food.

    1. It’s all about perception. Personally, I need the ego boost of imagining my friends wasting time, while I follow the noble pursuit of writing a blog and irritating IBS sufferers.

  6. Hahaha! Dear God this obsession drives me crazy. It’s the new Farmville or whatever that game was called. “Friends” are constantly trying to drag me into this insanity…clearly they do not really know me. I remember running into a “friend” at Sam’s Club. She left suddenly to “crop her strawberries” that I sadly assumed were REAL. To this day it still gives me goosebumps.

    1. Scary nonsense. Most people think that the harbingers of the end of the world are earthquakes and plagues, but I’m thinking it might be Facebook games and reality TV shows.

  7. I avoid all games on FB. I avoid FB most of the time. I’m going to start making up fake FB games and post bizarre comments. FB won’t like that. But I will.

  8. Well hell, now I really want to play Cake of Shame. Thanks a lot!!

    Actually, I have heard about the addictive properties of this crack-like game. Since I am already addicted to blogging and all things blog related, I am obviously above the wasting of time on the internet, so I avoid this like a candy coated bong.

    And wait a second . . . my kids gave me a card that says I’M the best mother in the world. Crap, now I think we need a mom-off between your wife and I. (And I never have nor will I ever claim that MY mom is/was/will be the best mom ever, so we’re safe from that at least).

    1. My wife is too kind and not the competitive type, she’ll just let you win it dear.
      The Cake Of Shame game will be launching as soon as I can figure out how to digitize the images better. Right now, the cakes look too much like vanilla hockey pucks, and the icing…well…we won’t discuss the icing.

  9. Joe Blow IS a real person who reads blogs and plays games on Facebook just to blow off a little steam from the intensity of his REAL mission. He founded an organization called “Blow Me Down” that’s trying to raise awareness of the devastation that can be done to REAL people when you make fun of their REAL names. You insensitive clod.

    1. Joe wrote to me earlier in the comments. Apparently he suffers from IBS and is lactose intolerant. I feel horrible for having ridiculed him on so many levels. By the same token, his parents Shlomo and Flo are partly to blame – they should’ve named him Dave.

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