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Club Penguin Anonymous

My son Nicholas, age 5, recently discovered the internet.

Last week I got him an account at Club Penguin, a website for kids. Since then, he has spent hours at a time on Club Penguin.

He refuses to come to meals. He throws tantrums if forced to stop. Even when enticed with activities he used to find enjoyable, like terrorizing the cat, he remains fixated on the computer screen.

I was shocked yesterday when he asked me to cancel his Club Penguin account.

“Why?” I asked. “Are you tired of it already?”

“No, I love it,” he replied. “It is just that once I start, I can’t get off of it.”