My name is Yajeev, and I'm addicted to cell phone Yahtzee Deluxe.
(Response: Hi, Yajeev.)
You may recall my recent discovery of cell phone Yahtzee Deluxe as an alternative and superior means of entertainment/occupation while using the toilet (see 9/27/06 entry).
What was once a sometimes amusement has since come to rule my life. I write this blog not out of pride, but in shame over the way I have allowed Yahtzee Deluxe to overtake every aspect of my life.
Had you confronted me two months ago as a well-meaning friend or relative, I would have denied, denied, denied... and would have insisted that YOU were the one with the problem, son. It's taken me a long time to admit that I have an addiction, but I know that this is the first step in overcoming it.
There has been no lack of warning signs... I have ignored them all. And yet, day by day, game by game, roll by ineluctable roll, Yahtzee Deluxe has consumed one facet of my existence after another.
It began when I would play Yahtzee Deluxe while sitting on the toilet. Before I knew it, I was extending my throne room visits, both in frequency and duration... I was sitting down for occasions I would have previously stood... I was visiting the restroom when there was no real need for elimination--I just craved an escape into my private sanctuary where I could satisfy what was fast becoming an unquenchable urge to roll five of a kind.
On my commutes to and from work, I have often found myself sitting in traffic. Before I knew it, I was whiling away my idle road time with Yahtzee Deluxe. When the road congestion cleared in the middle of a great game, however, I occasionally could not find the willpower to set my cell phone down and turn my attention to the road. Nay, one hand on the wheel, the other on the dice, I continued both pursuits simultaneously... usually managing to perform both tasks adequately. On one occasion, before my very eyes on the little color screen appeared "1 2 3 4 5." I yelled in exclamation, "Large straight!" when I heard a honk at my side. I looked up and realized that I had begun to swerve into the other lane. As if to explain myself and assuage the anger of the driver I nearly broadsided, I merely lifted my cell phone to the window and pointed at it, mouthing the words "Large straight." I felt sure he'd understand.
The urge comes upon me at all times--in the middle of the night, while reading for school, even in the middle of writing this blog I have played twice (scores: 199 and 224) and have barely resisted the urge to play more... I can do better than those scores--they're average at best.
Looking back, the warning signs of addiction have been so obvious... I've consulted addiction websites and found that I have exhibited several of the classic signs of addiction: denial of any problem, keeping secrets from family and friends (i.e. how much Yahtzee Deluxe I've been playing), problems with schoolwork (rolling the digital dice when I should have been reading), spending a lot of time figuring out how to satisfy my addiction, failed attempts to stop indulging, anxiety (you should see me sweat bullets when I've rolled four sixes and I'm going for the Yahtzee with one roll left), mood swings (highly score dependent), changes in sleeping habits (I've been playing in the middle of the night), feeling shaky or sick when trying to stop, weight gain (two pounds since Thanksgiving)...
And yet, it was only recently, while my wife and I were enjoying a romantic evening at the Olive Garden, when, during the slightest lull in an otherwise serious and stimulating conversation, I whipped out my cell phone, and pressed the memorized button sequence to open Yahtzee Deluxe and began rolling, that I realized something was amiss. I glanced up, and realized I had done something wrong.
"What are you doing?"
"Um, I'm playing Yahtzee Deluxe."
"Is our conversation not interesting enough?"
"Oh, sure it is." Pause. "Are you offended?"
"Oh, sorry." I flipped my phone shut, and slid it into my pocket.
We continued our conversation. My wife, graceful as ever, has not brought up this incident again. But I know that I have offended.
Which brings me to the present. It's easy to overlook the indications of a problem… until you begin to hurt the ones you love.
I have vowed to make a change: No more Yahtzee Deluxe at the Olive Garden.
It may seem a small step, but I assure you, it will be no easy task. And, I call upon you, my friends, to help me, to hold me to my commitment. I know that without a support structure in place, my best-laid plans are but lofty pie-in-the-sky fantasies. Please, if ever you find yourself with me in an Olive Garden, and you see me reach for my pocket, have the courage and strength to help me find my own courage and strength to overcome the animal Yahtzee Deluxe urge that rages within.
(Response: polite, gentle applause)
Originally Posted: Tuesday, February 7, 2007
(Then) Curent Mood: guilty