What a silly name, right? And it *is* a silly game, but oh so addictive. I’ve been playing it off and on for years, and it’s conveniently located on my phone. I’ve conquered all of the mini-games/levels, but I frequently return to one or two mini-games for the sheer enjoyment of it, for the ever-so-useful distraction of it.
Sometimes the distractions are bad, preventing me from getting my work done. Other times, the distractions are helpful, allowing me to disconnect temporarily—to “come down” from the high-energy encounter of the classroom, for instance, as I prepare my brain to shift into paperwork mode.
My dalliances with the game come and go, ebb and flow. Some months I play it every day. Some months I don’t even open it.
I am in one of those “on” seasons right now. But then everything that could be a diversion or distraction from my supposed-to’s seems to be doing the trick right now.
Facebook. Twitter. Email. Podcasts. Reading. (What? It’s good for me!) Cooking dinner or preparing lunch for the next day. Even…shudder…schoolwork. (Like surfing the net or magazines in search of good mentor texts for argument writing or rhetorical analysis.) I suppose even sleep could be accused of being diversionary sometimes.
It’s distraction central around here.
And it’s making me reflect. I’m realizing that, on certain days, I’m in a battle, or, at the very least, a game. I’m stuck, on those days, facing a decision: what do I want to pursue? Do I want to be a plant (growing, breathing, green, viriditas)…or do I want to be a zombie? And the follow-up question, of course, is, does playing PvZ lead me to be a plant or a zombie?
And the answer depends on the day I’m asked.
Things I’ve Learned from Plants vs. Zombies:
- I’d rather be a plant than a zombie. Those guys drool and hack and groan their way through perfectly beautiful growing plants, and for what? To go inside the house and eat the brains of the inhabitants. Eeww. I don’t want to be only a consumer; I want to give back to the universe.
- Plants are growing, green, breathing things. They give happy benefits to us in the form of oxygen, air-cleaning, happy blooms, and even coins (in the game, anyway). They exhibit inventive defenses against predation.
- In the game, the plants, once planted, take a moment to root themselves before they can begin their defensive actions against the zombies. This reminds me to take time to root myself, to reflect, to dig in and be sure of my purchase before I start fighting the battles at hand.
- It helps if you shoot fire.
- Some plants may have to be expendable. You hate it when they get eaten, but sometimes they can stall the zombies long enough for you to get a heavier hitter in place.
- It pays to protect your powerhouses, those plants that shoot fire or heft watermelons or steal metal helmets from the zombies.
Anyone else see some life applications here?
Seriously, though, I think it’s a fine line between a distraction that leads to life and a distraction that leads to death (if I can completely obliterate St. Paul’s text and meaning) and on any given day, anything I do can swing in either direction. I just have to remember to come up for air from time to time and see which way the wind is blowing.
Thanks for the reminder that life lessons can be found in the most unexpected of places.
I agree that distraction can work either way, and the skill is in determining the difference. I, too, love the delightfully unexpected. Thanks for reading and commenting.