Block Frenzy

| Columns and Opinions

There are times, even for the busiest people, when you are bored to tears. We mean there is absolutely nothing you can do or want to do and your only option is to sit and watch grass grow, snow fall, ice melt, or Britney Spears get a life.

Those are mind-numbing occasions, we know, and it can be like a mental Sargasso Sea; you have no motivation to do anything because you arenit doing anything thatis motivating.

When you get in that state of psychological doldrums sometimes all it takes is the simplest thing to get your brain going again: an easily answered question, a mildly interesting anecdote, even a puzzle so basic a 3 year old could master it in minutes.

The problem with seemingly simple puzzles, however, is that they suddenly become complex, and addicting. Now, instead of sitting idly waiting for something to give it a push, your brain seems to run around in circles and at the center of that circle is that bedeviling puzzle.

It calls to you like a siren of the sea, beckoning you to try just once more though you know itis a complete and utter waste of time. Yet you do it anyway.

Such a puzzle exists to purely plague mankind, and to serve as fodder for this installment of A Cool Waste of Time.

Block Frenzy looks innocent enough. A red block seems almost comical on its white background surrounded by a black border. In each of the four corners of the field on which the red block sits are blue blocks, each a different size and shape.

Block Frenzy: Simple yet beguiling.

Big deal, right? Blocks, field... so what?

So click and hold the red block and move it such that it does not contact the blue blocks or the black border.

Uh huh. Not so big a deal now, is it? But keep trying, itis not that hard to do. Each time you try and fail -- and you will fail -- the screen displays how long you were able to keep the red block in play. Surely you can beat that last try. Surely.

You might want to keep an eye on the real time, however. While each game is measured in seconds, play enough and youill be surprised to see how many minutes, even hours, have passed by while you pursued a better score.

Time wasted, gone forever, and for what? In a vain attempt to keep a silly red block untouched? Stupid, stupid, stupid.

But what would it hurt to try one more time?

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