How Trivia Crack claimed another victim

. February 27, 2015.

 My name is Rose, and I am a crack addict.

 I’m not addicted to the illegal, smokeable stuff my generation made famous. Instead, it’s another crack that my daughter’s generation is now addicted to. It is legal, yet no less intoxicating.

 I speak of Trivia Crack. For those who have not yet been indoctrinated, it is an online trivia game that can be played against friends and strangers, for various tokens and expertise levels.  More importantly, it can be played for serious bragging rights.

 I blame my daughter for getting me hooked. One day she was on her ipad and kept asking me random questions. What is the capital of Germany? Who was the goalie for the 1980 United States Olympic hockey team?  Where was the first night time Major League Baseball game played?

 Berlin. Jim Craig. Cincinnati.

 And just like that, I was transported back to my decade, the 1980s. In addition to crack cocaine, we gave the world the original Trivia Crack – Trivial Pursuit. I know a little about a lot of things, an occupational hazard of 27 years in the newspaper business. I might not have been able to change a flat tire, but I could tell you where Motor City was. It was the perfect diversion before the internet, when playing for pie pieces could seem as important as Glasnost. Which, by the way, was introduced by Mikhail Gorbachev when the Soviet Union was still the Soviet Union.

 So on that day when I looked over my daughter’s shoulder and helped her win a game or two, I thought it was just a quaint throwback to my day. She does, after all, listen to a band that covered a classic by The Romantics- What I Like About You, done decently by 5 Seconds of Summer. This will surely pass.

 That was until my cousin, a few years younger than I, invited me to play through Facebook. I’d never done a Facebook game, but decided it was harmless. Five games later, my record against him was 5-0. Where had this game been for the last 30 years? Suddenly the useless knowledge gained through two bachelor degrees, years of writing about nearly everything and being a history buff was helpful. It actually made me less of a nerd. A word which, by the way, was made popular by the sitcom “Happy Days.” Which was a sitcom about idealized life in 1950s and 1960s America. 

 I soon faced a moral dilemma when my daughters invited me to play against them. I had no qualms about competing against the high schooler.  But the sixth grader? There is something unseemly about beating someone barely into double digits. I think Trivia Crack knew this somehow, because the game I faced against her had by far the hardest questions I’d had yet. 

I’m sure I can stop whenever I want. I’ve gone whole hours without being challenged with a game, or spending time clicking on answers. But first let me answer this question in entertainment about who wrote Animal Farm and 1984. (George Orwell)