Picking up the tab.

Once again, yet – ONCE AGAIN, I am reminded about my friend’s absence.

I don’t know what it is, but I cannot make any gold in this stupid game. I try to figure it out, so I can have fun, have some gold stashed up for rainy days and otherwise, but just can’t seem to do it. The jewel crafting profession has left me with nothing but rhinestones; leatherworking — well, you actually have to get out there and hunt down some things, and I thought gee, perhaps Luperci’s blacksmithing skills would work. Nothing. Like setting up a lemonade stand in a soda-pop town, no one wants what I have. And if I try to get chaos orbs, others need them, too. And hoping against hope, if I run in a guild group, perhaps some of my more financially well-established guildmates will allow me to get the orb is too much to ask. I am told to run on my own for the ‘satchel.’ I don’t agree with the satchel that comes from queueing as a tank or healer–it’s nice, sure, but I have always thought that every player should get the chance at something fun. And, that satchel usually has a few gumball machine treats in it.

I am tired of going dutch-treat. (Question: do the Dutch get insulted by this idiom? I would, I guess.) Tired of going out to eat and ordering water while everyone else gets lobster, and we split the bill. I want to be wined and dined a bit myself. Which is why, yet again, I miss my friend. Gold was not the priority. It was friendship over monetary gain. Bros before hos. (Sorry, couldn’t resist.)

Now, I found my checkbook and am off to pay bills and pay my dues. Maybe the one weapon I was able to craft, after clawing and fighting my way to get five lousy chaos orbs, will sell. Working for a living – sigh. Maybe Blizz will treat us well soon.

Theme song: Money Changes Everything/Cyndi Lauper

Forest for the trees.

Yesterday I listened to a day-long presentation on brain research. The speaker was highly engaging, intelligent, and humble. I know that when a very smarty-pants person has to address a group of laypeople, she must bring the jargon down to an understandable level. And to be honest, I was not in the frame of mind to listen to medical or psychological terms yesterday afternoon, so I appreciate her analogy of this concept:

There are tree people, and there are forest people. (I personally think most of us are squirrels holding our nuts or opossums swinging by our tails, but no matter.) The tree people are the organized, detail people. They like to have order out of chaos, fold their underwear, match their socks, make lists, and actually check off items from the list. Go to the far end of the spectrum of tree people, and you have someone who is so uptight and inflexible, they just can’t bend. The forest people, depending on how far the other end of the spectrum you go, are the “big picture” people. These are those of us who can live with some clutter, chaos, and get into what we perceive is the ‘higher ideal’ of creativity and common good. But, forest people march to their own drum, are often late, and commit the greatest sin of all–forget birthdays. And forest people don’t put the toilet seat down. Luckily, there are tree people to remind them.

I bring this up because you may want to consider your tree v. forest people while playing. Was talking with GM the other day, and his ability to see the ‘big picture’ as well as the details of missteps and fire pits. He strikes a balance of both, which is optimal for raid leading. Unfortunately, and I will speak for myself, I have grown to depend on that balance–in other words, won’t do any of the heavy lifting myself. The ‘tree’ people I know in the game are the ones I turn to when I don’t feel like going to wowwiki or joystiq to look up some NPC’s name or find the quest chain. Too lazy. I’m a forest person, duh! Look at the scenary! Let’s write a story!

Many of my buddies will have a cocktail, or two – they want to change their real life role to another one in the game. It’s frowned upon to drink on the job in most professions, say school bus driver or tiger dentist. Completely understandable. My point is, if you ever get frustrated, ask yourself, if the person who’s upsetting the apple cart is in conflict with your own personality. Are you being all forest-y, when this person is being a tree? I find that the trees get far more irritated with the forests than the other way around. They are the steely-eyed missile men of the game — know the phases, the goal, the details for every fight. We forest people just want to get the prize at the bottom of the cereal box. Oh, look! A squirrel!

Theme song: Rush/The Trees 

Thank heavens for little gnomes…

Tall people take themselves much too seriously sometimes. It seems that every time I am in a dungeon, it is a dwarf or a gnome who lightens the mood. Or, if the mood is lightened, look down. You’ll see the source of good cheer.

Take this little mage for example:

My Winterspring cub gets all tuckered-out. Poor little fluffball. She has a habit of just taking little kitty-naps wherever, whenever she feels like it. (I am convinced she has saved my tail by tripping the bad guys.) Here is a shot of a cute little mage who decided it was time for a nap, too, right next to my kitty-cat. There is lot of running in circles in the Violet Hold, and we all took five.

Shorties get the job done. Love watching a gnome DK or warrior tank: the David v. Goliath tune always inspires.

Here in my real world, we had a few days of heat, and now it’s back to Darkshire days. Yesterday in a meeting I was telling a friend about my admiration of sparky gnomes facing down big brutes, and realized I had a smile on my face for the first time all day. I am smiling now. Kisses, little gnomes. You don’t make room to be judgmental.

Irked.

I am sitting here, getting teary, and wondering why. I guess it is, things that I thought, and things that I held true, change in such a volatile way when the group dynamic changes. One addition or personality, or big characters, change the tone and direction of guild chat or the entertainment/social side of the game so much for me, and I don’t know why. Cross-dressing rogue friend said to me, “You are very capable of avoiding that situation in real life, you never put up with that–why do you do so in this guild? “They’ve” been doing that to you all summer?” Well, he has a point. For the most part, many of my guildmates are wonderful people. In fact, I am certain all of them are wonderful people, and don’t kick puppies, punch nuns, or leave the toilet paper roll empty. But there are some big personalities, those who suck the oxygen out of the room and everyone dies laughing. A lot of one-upmanship and blarney chokes the flow of chat. Tonight, I felt myself shrinking smaller and smaller. I had such a fun morning, too: great group that achieved so much, and it just clicked, faster than a summoning stone.

But, I find myself feeling this way from time to time, that sense of not belonging, or not even wanting to, like some inside joke everyone else gets but I am just kind of baffled. In a few days/weeks it won’t matter. Real life encroaches. And my recreational goals need to change, too. By tonight, after dinner, my little beautiful angel priest healer will be level 80. Tank girl is almost done with  the Molten Front dailies, or will be tomorrow. Shaman-chica has known successful top-ranked dps scores.

I am hoping that my new circle of friends in the guild are not shallow–I don’t believe them to be, not at all. I have entrusted them with my most precious commodity, my time, as they have trusted me, too.

Ah, the power of “ignore.” They have all learned this long ago.

Limericks for one day…

There once was a draenei with big horns
So big they were, like ears of corn
On each side of her head
They barely fit in her bed
Size does matter, she could have sworn

A beautiful paladin, into a dungeon she went
Righteous defense she constantly spent
Pulling back mobs, she skillfully clobbered
All over her orbs they sloppily-slobbered
And drool on her chestguard she began to lament

“Guarf…help. It’s right there, but not quite.”

Trouble*

Since the time I have been playing, about a year and a half, three players have reported seeing other draeneis, shamans no less, who resemble “Matty.” One even said he had to rub his eyes to make sure it wasn’t me.

Well, as I was walking down the street, doing my jewelcrafting daily, I see this girl:

Hirsute Hussy!

Not only does she look like me, but my Hyjal bear cub didn’t even recognize me, and sat right next to her and her stinky little butt-wiping dog! Oh! The nerve! Like to rip her bleach-blond hair right out from the tender roots!

Which leads me to my point:
Draenei girl haircuts = not good. They are some left over from Farah Fawcett’s heyday of feathered bangs and big poofs. Luperci has had her hair cut no less than approximately 45 times. She has tried blond, long,  straight, up, and every time ends up in the same pigtails. Matty’s hair hasn’t changed except for once. (And now this trollop comes waltzing down the Whisperwind streets…! Shammy RAGE!)

I have been told, repeatedly, in a nerd-tastic tone, that hair pixels are tough to model. And just like the hairdresser we love, when we bring in a photo of Jennifer Anniston or Selma Hayak and say “Cut it like that,” what we’re really saying is, “…and I’ll take a side of plastic surgery too to look like her.” It is the magic. I know — men will never, ever understand this. I get it. The only man who understood good hair is Samson, and look what happened to him.

Now Night Elf females are given many more choices: they can have the Fook Yu or Fook Mi look:

…and in just about any color desired. Draenei females are limited in their choices. It’s feathered look 1977 or feathered look 1979.

Or really, really unattractive, like Sinead O’Connor shaved. Or soccer-mom-ish.

It would be too much to ask if the Transmorgifierblahdeblahhoopdejoo thing provided more hair style choices, I know.

And while crawling over the web today, found this gem:

 It wasn’t just me who was irked by the World of Dresscraft comment:
http://manalicious.wordpress.com/2011/08/26/still-excited-to-play-world-of-dresscraft/

…and!  Darkmoon Faire!
http://manalicious.wordpress.com/2011/08/25/the-new-and-improved-darkmoon-faire/

Just talking about that today with some Druids by the water cooler!

And I do appreciate Manalicious’ artwork. She is incredibly talented. I can’t help but wonder, though, how Arthur Rakham would have drawn a Draenei female. One can only imagine.

Postcript: Things that do kind of, a little bit, maybe, just a tad irk me: When players tout that they “have boobs!” Okay, sweetie – 40% of us do who play WoW. That may impress the wanker down the block, but not sure that one is a buff anymore. What does that have to do with haircuts? Not much, but if you’re trying to impress anyone with your feminine wiles, well….

*”Trouble” is the name of my toon’s haircut. Oh yeah. You copy my groove, there’s gonna be trouble all right.

Theme song: Cake/Short Skirt/Long Jacket (Lou Reed, is that you?)