Last year, my intern Sharon Vaknin came into work and began chatting about how addicted she was to a game called Paper Toss. I told her I'd just picked the game up the night before and was enjoying it, too. She then asked what my highest score was. Now, as an extremely competitive person, I don't like answering questions like this, especially since I'd spent only a couple minutes with the game, but despite my better judgment, I answered with "17". I immediately noticed the smirk that quickly formed on her face as she replied with her score: 189.
After being revived a few hours later from unconsciousness, I awakened determined to beat that score into a bloody pulp and make it call me daddy. The next 24 hours were a blur of finger flicking and near death experiences as I played not only at home, but on my hour-long walk to and from work through busy, San Francisco rush hour traffic.
In less than 24 hours, I'd beaten her score (and then some) expecting to feel a sense of emptiness, having basically wasted the last day. However, achieving the best score in San Francisco as well as making it the top 10 in California (at that point, at least), I actually felt like I'd accomplished something meaningful in my life.
Paper Toss is the simplest of games, with virtually endless replay potential. Just flick your finger over a virtual, crumpled piece of paper while taking into account which direction and how hard the fan is blowing. From such a simple concept came a game that should probably be banned in most states, because of its extreme addictiveness.
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