“When I was a little girl, there were real escape rooms and mom escape rooms. Real escape rooms made you feel shiny sparkly feelings that lasted 3 weeks and mom escape rooms gave you brown feelings that lasted forever…”

So you were invited to someone’s birthday party at Mystery Room NYC. You have absolutely no idea what an escape room is, and it’s kind of sketch that you need to climb all those stairs to actually get there. But then you get inside. You see the room open up, the puzzles come at you one after the other, and suddenly you become invested in your team’s progress. You want to escape! But then it’s over. Just like that. You go out for celebratory drinks, but you don’t want to celebrate. You want to play again.

It only takes one game to turn someone on to escape rooms: the offspring of the holy union between museum and arcade. You know you had fun, but did I just learn how to transcribe DNA into RNA? Yes, child. You did. And now you want more. Before you schedule your next game, you download all the apps. The Room and all it’s sequels held you over for about a week, temporarily satisfying your hunger for logic puzzles and scavenging. Then came the Can You Escape? games, which are fun, but you know it’s more fun when you’re able to get your hands on the actual pieces.

You learn very quickly that the only way to satisfy this itch is to feed the obsession. You’ve booked a game at one of 22 different escape room companies in New York City alone. In preparation, you’ve stolen all your nephew’s Legos; you’ve mastered opening a lock in under 2.0 seconds; you’ve taken a class in bomb defusal. Overkill? No.

Because you recognize that this is not just a game. This is a way for you to keep your brain sharp, to keep you thinking outside of the box. And what’s better, you get to invite your friends out for a fun hour (or 5 depending on how many rooms you play in one go), while you exercise your mental strength. So go get ‘em, tiger, and let it be known, that you are an escape room-aholic.