What might have been my first WoW post

I blogged for several years before I ever started up KMA. Today, I was browsing through those old posts today for something else (a post about respect in marriage, because I think it’s silly to celebrate ‘love’ as it is popularly defined) and I ran across this old post. It still gives me a bit of a giggle, so here we go:

Alas: So I was watching Lord of the Rings the other day while grinding in Shadowmoon….
Friend: yeah?
Alas: And it was the first movie and they were in the Mines of Moria
Friend: yeah?
Alas: And I thought:
What a failsauce 10-man raid
They go in with only 9 people
Friend: they pulled the whole instance
they had a leeroy jenkins moment
Alas: Four of whom are complete n00bs
Friend: haha.
it was like level 50 content and the hobbits are like level 10
Alas: They have a mage tanking
Friend: yeah.
and the mage tank
omg1
that’s so funny! keep going
Alas: And their two warriors are more concerned with looking good than with wearing plate
So they’re in zarking leather
Friend: leather warriors!
hey, it’s rogue gear for dps
Alas: And somehow, the little guys pull all the aggro
Friend: cause they’re level 10
Alas: Right
And they have no healers
Friend: they just got their first talent point and feel all bad-ass
lol! bandages ftw
the mage can’t even aoe.
Alas: And only one ranged DPS since their mage is tanking
Friend: sure he’s level 70, but why no aoe?
Alas: Exactly!
Friend: he coulda killed those 40’s and 50’s
couple of arc expl’s and bam. instance done
but nooooooo
he never trained arcane
Alas: Apparently
Friend: and why the sword?
Alas: Too in love with fire, I think
Friend: staves have better stats
Alas: I know!
He didn’t even have an off-hand
Friend: he said screw arc and frost
all i need is fireball
rank 1
Alas: He didn’t even use Pyroblast
Friend: i know
lol
man, they needed a shammy for windfury
Alas: He just never spent his talent points or trained
And then their dwarf guy – where was he in that whole mess?
Friend: lol
he was all being short
Alas: Probably off looking for chests
“Guys, there’s treasure on my mini-map”
Friend:  hey! i see a chest on my map
better snag it before we have to /roll
notice how he was all grabby with the tomb stuff?
he was a ninja
Alas: And the only reason Frodo didn’t die was because a higher level guy (Bilbo) gave him some phat lewtz
Friend: he had purpz!
Alas: Exactly
Friend: they needed a priest for the mage tanking
lol
Alas: Failsauce
See?
Oh – and Gandalf was apparently out of light feathers when he got dragged down into the abyss
Friend: rofl!
yeah
that’s instant cast buddy
Alas: Or he forgot he had slow fall
Friend: just pop it
lol! i’ve done that
oh yeah, he didn’t train arcane
“why are these light feathers a white item?!?!”
lol
it was his first 70
after the fall his buddy decided to take over, he was all, gimme that keyboard
he had to spirit res

if you had eyes like golden crowns

I’ve been saying a lot of goodbyes lately, it seems. Many of them tinged with sadness, a few with relief and some without thought or concern at all. In the aftermath of still others, I find only anger.

I could do without the sad goodbyes and the angry ones. I could do without the ones that aren’t on my terms at all. I could do without the little niggle in the back of my mind that says I am somehow to blame for all these goodbyes.

The WoW community – both in and out of game – is such a strange hybrid of fragility and endurance. A friendship that spanned several years can be tossed aside as if it were nothing in less than 15 minutes. A blogger that was around before your time might give it all up long before you are ready to do so.

Fragile yet enduring. Like a disc priest in their bubble.

In both cases, the community as a whole is still there and will continue to be there. There are other friendships, equally important. There are other bloggers, equally as witty. The community as a whole might change day by day, with this addition and that loss. But it also remains very much the same.

It’s just that sometimes the hits come a little harder than we would like. And for me, reeling under a triple blow, I think it’s appropriate to stop, reflect, mourn and try to put into words the struggle it can sometimes be to accept the community for what it is: wonderful, ephemeral and golden.

Even when it sucks.

Mr. Collins finds acceptance

Chapter 22

The inmates of <Longbourn> were engaged to run arenas with the <Lucas Pwnage> and again during the chief of the day was Charlotte so kind as to team up with Mr. Collins. Elizabeth took an opportunity of thanking her. “It keeps him in good humour,” said she, “and I am more obliged to you than I can express.” Charlotte assured her friend of her satisfaction in being useful, and that it amply repaid her for the little sacrifice of her ranking. This was very amiable, but Charlotte’s kindness extended farther than Elizabeth had any conception of; its object was nothing else than to secure her from any return of Mr. Collins’s addresses, by engaging them towards herself. Such was Charlotte’s scheme; and appearances were so favourable, that when they parted at night, she would have felt almost secure of success if he had not been to leave the server so very soon. But here she did injustice to the fire and independence of his character, for it led him to /gquit out of <Longbourn> the next morning with admirable slyness, and hasten to <Lucas Pwnage> to throw himself at her feet. He was anxious to avoid the notice of the rest of the guild, from a conviction that if they saw him depart, they could not fail to conjecture his design, and he was not willing to have the attempt known till its success might be known likewise; for though feeling almost secure, and with reason, for Charlotte had been tolerably encouraging, he was comparatively diffident since the adventure of Wednesday. His reception, however, was of the most flattering kind. Charlotte perceived him in her friends list as being unguilded, and instantly sent him a tell to inquire after the event. But little had she dared to hope that so much love and eloquence awaited her there.

In as short a time as Mr. Collins’s long speeches and laborious typing would allow, everything was settled between them to the satisfaction of both; and as she invited him to the guild he earnestly entreated her to name the day that was to make him the happiest of men; and though such a solicitation must be waived for the present, the lady felt no inclination to trifle with his happiness. The stupidity with which he was favoured by nature must guard his courtship from any charm that could make a woman wish for its continuance; and Charlotte, who accepted him solely from the pure and disinterested desire of a better raiding establishment, cared not how soon that establishment were gained.

Sir William and Lady Lucas were speedily applied to for their consent; and it was bestowed with a most joyful alacrity. Mr. Collins’s present circumstances made it a most eligible match for Charlotte, to whom they could give few epics; and his prospects of future raiding achievements were exceedingly fair. Lady Lucas began directly to calculate, with more interest than the matter had ever excited before, how many years longer Mr. Bennet was likely to live; and Sir William gave it as his decided opinion, that whenever Mr. Collins should be in possession of <Longbourn>, it would be highly expedient that both he and Charlotte should make their appearance on the server forums for recruitment purposes. The whole guild, in short, were properly overjoyed on the occasion. The more casual players formed hopes of getting a confirmed raid spot a year or two sooner than they might otherwise have done; and the tanks were relieved from their apprehension of Charlotte’s attempting to heal for them. Charlotte herself was tolerably composed. She had gained her point, and had time to consider of it. Her reflections were in general satisfactory. Mr. Collins, to be sure, was neither sensible nor agreeable; his society was irksome, and his attachment to her must be imaginary. But still she would be his primary healer . Without thinking highly either of warriors or their abilities, healing in a progression guild had always been her object; it was the only provision for well-geared young women of small guilds, and however uncertain of giving happiness, must be their pleasantest preservative from want. This preservative she had now obtained; and at the level of 80, without having ever been successful in some of the harder heroics, she felt all the good luck of it. The least agreeable circumstance in the business was the surprise it must occasion to Elizabeth, whose friendship she valued beyond that of any other person. Elizabeth would wonder, and probably would blame her; and though her resolution was not to be shaken, her feelings must be hurt by such a disapprobation. She resolved to give her the information herself, and therefore charged Mr. Collins, when he spoke to anyone from <Longbourn>, to drop no hint of what had passed before any of the guild. A promise of secrecy was of course very dutifully given, but it could not be kept without difficulty; for the curiosity excited by his absence burst forth in such very direct questions on his being spotted online and required some ingenuity to evade, and he was at the same time exercising great self-denial, for he was longing to publish his prosperous love.

As he was to begin his transfer on the morrow, the ceremony of leave-taking was performed when the guild logged off for the night; and Mrs. Bennet, with great politeness and cordiality, said how happy they should be to see him at <Longbourn> again, whenever his engagements might allow him to visit them.

“My dear madam,” he replied, “this invitation is particularly gratifying, because it is what I have been hoping to receive; and you may be very certain that I shall avail myself of it as soon as possible.”

They were all astonished; and Mr. Bennet, who could by no means wish for so speedy a return, immediately said:

“But is there not danger of Lady Catherine’s disapprobation here, my good sir? You had better neglect us than run the risk of offending your patroness.”

“My dear sir,” replied Mr. Collins, “I am particularly obliged to you for this friendly caution, and you may depend upon my not taking so material a step without her ladyship’s concurrence.”

“You cannot be too much upon your guard. Risk anything rather than her displeasure; and if you find it likely to be raised by your coming to us again, which I should think exceedingly probable, stay quietly on your own server, and be satisfied that we shall take no offence.”

“Believe me, my dear sir, my gratitude is warmly excited by such affectionate attention; and depend upon it, you will speedily receive from me a letter of thanks for this, and for every other mark of your regard during my stay. As for the rest of the guild, though my absence may not be long enough to render it necessary, I shall now take the liberty of wishing them health and happiness, not excepting Elizabeth.”

With proper civilities the guild then logged off for the night; all of them equally surprised that he meditated a quick return. Mrs. Bennet wished to understand by it that he thought of paying his addresses to one of her other raiders, and Mary might have been prevailed on to accept him. She rated his abilities much higher than any of the others; there was a solidity in his reflections which often struck her, and though by no means so clever as herself, she thought that if encouraged to read and improve himself by such an example as hers, he might become a very agreeable companion. But on the following morning, every hope of this kind was done away. Charlotte joined their vent soon after dailies, and in a private conference with Elizabeth related the event of the day before.

The possibility of Mr. Collins’s fancying himself able to persuade her friend away from the sever had once occurred to Elizabeth within the last day or two; but that Charlotte could encourage him seemed almost as far from possibility as she could encourage him herself, and her astonishment was consequently so great as to overcome at first the bounds of decorum, and she could not help crying out:

“Going to heal for Mr. Collins! My dear Charlotte—UNPOSSIBLE!”

The steady countenance which Charlotte had commanded in telling her story, gave way to a momentary confusion here on receiving so direct a reproach; though, as it was no more than she expected, she soon regained her composure, and calmly replied:

“Why should you be surprised, my dear Eliza? Do you think it incredible that Mr. Collins should be able to procure any healer’s good opinion, because he was not so happy as to succeed with you?”

But Elizabeth had now recollected herself, and making a strong effort for it, was able to assure with tolerable firmness that the prospect of their relationship was highly grateful to her, and that she wished her all imaginable happiness.

“I see what you are feeling,” replied Charlotte. “You must be surprised, very much surprised—so lately as Mr. Collins was wishing to have you transfer to be with him. But when you have had time to think it over, I hope you will be satisfied with what I have done. I am not elite PvPer, you know; I never was. I ask only a comfortable guild; and considering Mr. Collins’s character, connection, and situation in life, I am convinced that my chance of happiness with him is as fair as most people can boast on changing guilds.”

Elizabeth quietly answered “No wai;” and after an awkward pause, they returned to the rest of the guild. Charlotte did not stay logged on much longer, and Elizabeth was then left to reflect on what she had heard. It was a long time before she became at all reconciled to the idea of so unsuitable a match. The strangeness of Mr. Collins’s making two offers within three days was nothing in comparison of his being now accepted. She had always felt that Charlotte’s opinion of raiding was not exactly like her own, but she had not supposed it to be possible that, when called into action, she would have sacrificed every better feeling to worldly advantage. Charlotte the guild mate of Mr. Collins was a most humiliating picture! And to the pang of a friend disgracing herself and sunk in her esteem, was added the distressing conviction that it was impossible for that friend to be tolerably happy in the lot she had chosen.

The grand experiment

In a small way, Eff the Ineffable, being an officerless guild, has created a stir among some of the people I know in the blogosphere. While several people have chimed in saying that an officerless guild is something they have done successfully (which brings me great comfort), to many others it seems to be a rather novel idea and I feel a bit like a rat in a scientific study with several people looking on to see how far we’ll make it before we croak.

To that end, I would like to work at making a series of posts about how we Effers are doing, how we run things and what difficulties we might encounter along the way. Some of this will be excessively “nuts and bolts” – but having an operation that can run smoothly depends on nuts and bolts and perhaps the odd bit of lubricant.

To get started, I am going to talk about our framework.

Rank and bank

We ended up with more ranks than what I had originally envisioned, but I think that each rank has a good reason for existing. There is the GM rank, a GM Alts rank, then it’s Raiders, Raider Alts, Member, Trial and the Bee Pit.

The GM Alt rank exists only to keep things simple, mostly for me. I couldn’t be on an alt in the ‘raider’ rank and effect any of the changes that were needed to bank permissions or getting someone else promoted. I do spend a lot of time on my main, but the requests for things to be done while I was on an alt were frequent and, on my part, frequently forgotten.

Raider alts keep the calendar simple to manage in an alt-heavy guild, so that was a must. We do targeted event invitations by rank because it forces people to make a decision in advance about whether or not they are going. It is easier for me, as the person managing the calendaring, to know who is planning on coming and who is not.

Member is where our more casual players hang out. Trial is largely unused since everyone who has come to us is known and vouched for by someone else already established in the guild. If we ever got an unknown person wanting to raid with us, we’d have a trial period to make sure they were able to fit in with our personalities and our goals. We’re so small. It’s very important that we can all mesh and work well as a team.

If you don’t know what the Bee Pit is for all I have to say is SHAME ON YOU.

As far as bank tabs, we only have a few so far. There is the general use tab, which is open to everyone from members on up and contains the most random assortment of things you can think of. After that we have the crafting goods tab, also open to members and above. Our raiding mats tab is third and only raider mains and above can withdraw from that and an authenticator is required to have the raider rank. We have a fourth tab, which is not designated for anything, but which will probably become our ‘for sale’ tab. Being able to sell off enchanting materials and epic BOE’s for a discounted price is a good way to get one’s guild bank funds healthy enough to provide repairs on raid nights.

So far, it seems to be working pretty well. And in a smaller group where we’re all mixing it up pretty frequently, it’s easy to establish relationships and build trust so I am hoping to lessen the few restrictions (such as limited withdrawal amounts) even further as we start the trial of fire that raiding can be.

Incidentally, our first raid is this weekend and we’re all very excited for it. I’ll be sure to report back on how it goes.

Regarding DinoTam: a note

It’s come to my attention recently that my long-running DinoTam theme has caused some people to think that I have some sort of beef with Tamarind of Righteous Orbs fame and chose to express it through posts about an obnoxious dinosaur.

Well, I don’t.

And while Tam has explicitly not asked me to cease and desist, I do feel that if something that started as a joke has gotten to the point where there are questions about my intent, then it clearly has crossed too far over the line. I’m just not the sort of person who, in knowing that something I have done has genuinely irritated or bothered someone (particularly someone who I really do respect), am going to keep doing it just because I “don’t mean it like that” or whatever.

Anyhow, my purpose in posting this publicly rather than quietly never posting about DinoTam again is twofold:

Firstly, I do want to apologize, again, for taking the joke too far. And for being rather thoughtless along the way.

Secondly, I would request that anyone else who has participated in the DinoTam phenomenon please consider joining me in letting this post be the last mention.

Thanks!

-Alas

Farming with a toddler

I’ve been spending many of my mornings in game, farming various things on various characters before the server is overrun by other people. It’s been fruitful and peaceful and I am nearing several profession maximums.

At least, it’s peaceful until my nephew decides he wants to wander in and watch Auntie play.

Then I am the recipient of all sorts of helpful advice, most of which consists of the following:

“Don’t fall wallah!” (wallah is. of course, water)

“Don’t fall tree!”

“Don’t fall rock!”

“Don’t fall sand!”

Whenever I am being urged to not let my flying rocket or dragon pitch me off its back and dash me to the ground, I am getting a running commentary on everything he sees and what he thinks about it. This is usually along the lines of:

“Wallah! Tree! Wallah! Rock. Uh-oh! Wallah!”

Wallah, ladies and gentlemen, is a serious concern among two year olds living in this house.

Today, the commentary got a little variance as we encountered many dinosaurs. Rather than being excited about them, it was: “Icky! Oh, another icky! Icky!”

“Yes,” I agreed, thinking of my favorite Dinosaur. “Very icky.” Then I pointed out a slimy ooze. “Is that icky?” I asked, expecting him to be impressed with its high level of ickiness. He was not. But he did spy another dinosaur.

“Icky!” he squeaked, pointing.

Now I’m just wondering when we’re going to come back around to not falling in the wallah. It’s a skill everyone should have.

Wherein Caroline is (still) a rotten whore

Chapter 21

The discussion of Mr. Collins’s offer was now nearly at an end, and Elizabeth had only to suffer from the uncomfortable feelings necessarily attending it, and occasionally from some peevish allusions of Mrs. Bennet. As for the gentleman himself, his feelings were chiefly expressed, not by embarrassment or dejection, or by trying to avoid her, but by stiffness of manner and resentful silence. He scarcely ever spoke to her, and the assiduous attentions which he had been so sensible of himself were transferred for the rest of the day to Charlotte, whose civility in listening to him was a seasonable relief to them all, and especially to her friend.

The morrow produced no abatement of Mrs. Bennet’s ill-humour or ill health. Mr. Collins was also in the same state of angry pride. Elizabeth had hoped that his resentment might shorten his visit, but his plan did not appear in the least affected by it. He was always to have transferred back on Saturday, and to Saturday he meant to stay.

After dailies, the girls performed a search on <The Meryton Militia> to inquire if Mr. Wickham were returned, and to lament over his absence from the ICC Raid. He joined them on their entering a random heroic, and attended them through the instance where his regret and vexation, and the concern of everybody, was well talked over. To Elizabeth, however, he voluntarily acknowledged that the necessity of his absence had been self-imposed.

“I found,” said he, “as the time drew near that I had better not meet Mr. Darcy; that to be in the same raid, the same party with him for so many hours together, might be more than I could bear, and that scenes might arise unpleasant to more than myself.”

She highly approved his forbearance, and they had leisure for a full discussion of it, and for all the commendation which they civilly bestowed on each other, as Wickham and another officer agreed to farm OS with <Longbourn>, and during the raid he particularly attended to her. His accompanying them was a double advantage; she felt all the compliment it offered to herself, and it was most acceptable as an occasion of introducing him to her GM.

Soon after their return, a letter was delivered to Jane; it came from Caroline. It was delivered in the usual fashion, through in-game mail, although it was marked as being from ‘Unknown'; and Elizabeth noticed that Jane grew suddenly quiet in Vent. Jane recollected herself soon, and tried to join with her usual cheerfulness in the general conversation; but Elizabeth felt an anxiety on the subject which drew off her attention even from Wickham; and no sooner had he and his companion taken leave, than a whisper from Jane invited her to follow her into another channel. When they had gained privacy, Jane, referenced the letter, saying:

“This is from Caroline Bingley; what it contains has surprised me a good deal. The whole party have left the server by this time, and are on their way back to their original server—and without any intention of coming back again. You shall hear what she says.”

She then read the first sentence aloud, which comprised the information of their having just resolved to follow their brother to their old server directly, and of their meaning to rejoin Mr. Darcy’s guild there. The next was in these words: “I do not pretend to regret anything I shall leave behind, except your society, my dearest friend; but we will hope, at some future period, to enjoy many returns of that delightful intercourse we have known, and in the meanwhile may lessen the pain of separation by a very frequent and most unreserved correspondence through RealID. I depend on you for that.” To these highflown expressions Elizabeth listened with all the insensibility of distrust; and though the suddenness of their removal surprised her, she saw nothing in it really to lament; it was not to be supposed that their absence from the server would prevent Mr. Bingley’s being able to contact Jane; and as to the loss of their society, she was persuaded that Jane must cease to regard it, in the enjoyment of his.

“It is unlucky,” said she, after a short pause, “that you should not be able to see your friends before they leave the server. But may we not hope that the period of future happiness to which Caroline looks forward may arrive earlier than she is aware, and that the delightful intercourse you have known as friends will be renewed with yet greater satisfaction as guild mates? Mr. Bingley will not be detained by them.”

“Caroline decidedly says that none of the party will return, even to roll alts. I will read it to you:”

“When Mr. Bingley left us yesterday, he imagined that the business which took him to our old server might be concluded in three or four days; but as we are certain it cannot be so, and at the same time convinced that when Mr. Bingley gets to the privileges of an established guild bank and healthier economy he will be in no hurry to leave it again, we have determined on following him thither, that he may not be obliged to spend his vacant hours in pick up groups. Many of my acquaintances are already there; I wish that I could hear that you, my dearest friend, had any intention of making one of the crowd—but of that I despair. I sincerely hope your raiding may abound in the epics which that exercise generally brings, and that your tanks will be so numerous as to prevent your feeling the loss of the three of whom we shall deprive you.”

“It is evident by this,” added Jane, “that he comes back no more.”

“It is only evident that Caroline does not mean that he should.”

“Why will you think so? It must be his own doing. He is his own master. But you do not know all. I will read you the passage which particularly hurts me. I will have no reserves from you.”

“Mr. Darcy is impatient to see his sister; and, to confess the truth, we are scarcely less eager to meet her again. I really do not think Georgiana has her equal for gear, ability, and achievements; and the affection she inspires in Louisa and myself is heightened into something still more interesting, from the hope we dare entertain of her being hereafter our primary healer. I do not know whether I ever before mentioned to you my feelings on this subject; but I will not leave the server without confiding them, and I trust you will not esteem them unreasonable. Mr. Bingley admires her greatly already; he will have frequent opportunity now of seeing her on the most intimate footing; her friends all wish the connection as much as his own; and a guild mate’s partiality is not misleading me, I think, when I call Mr. Bingley most capable of engaging any healer’s mana pool. With all these circumstances to favour an attachment, and nothing to prevent it, am I wrong, my dearest Jane, in indulging the hope of an event which will secure the happiness of so many?”

“What do you think of this sentence, my dear Lizzy?” said Jane as she finished it. “Is it not clear enough? Does it not expressly declare that Caroline neither expects nor wishes me to be her raid healer; that she is perfectly convinced of her Mr. Bingley’s indifference; and that if she suspects the nature of my feelings for him, she means (most kindly!) to put me on my guard? Can there be any other opinion on the subject?”

“Yes, there can; for mine is totally different. Will you hear it?”

“Most willingly.”

“You shall have it in a few words. Caroline sees that Mr. Bingley wants you for his healer, and wants him to engage Georgiana for the service instead. She follows him to their old server in hope of keeping him there, and tries to persuade you that he does not care about you.”

Jane shook her head.

“Indeed, Jane, you ought to believe me. No one who has ever seen you together can doubt his affection. Caroline, I am sure, cannot. She is not such a simpleton. Could she have seen half as much love in Mr. Darcy for herself, she would have rerolled by now. But the case is this: We are not rich enough or grand enough for them; and she is the more anxious to get Georgiana for Bingley, from the notion that when there has been one connection to the <Pemberly> bank accounts, she may have less trouble in achieving a second; in which there is certainly some ingenuity, and I dare say it would succeed, if Miss de Bourgh were out of the way. But, my dearest Jane, you cannot seriously imagine that because Caroline tells you Mr. Bingley greatly admires Georgiana, he is in the smallest degree less sensible of your merit than when he took leave of you on Tuesday, or that it will be in her power to persuade him that, instead of bwanting you to heal him, he is very much wanting her friend to perform that office.”

“If we thought alike of Caroline,” replied Jane, “your representation of all this might make me quite easy. But I know the foundation is unjust. Caroline is incapable of wilfully deceiving anyone; and all that I can hope in this case is that she is deceiving herself.”

“That is right. You could not have started a more happy idea, since you will not take comfort in mine. Believe her to be deceived, by all means. You have now done your duty by her, and must fret no longer.”

“But, my dear Lizzy, can I be happy, even supposing the best, in accepting a tank whose guild mates and friends are all wishing him to recruit elsewhere?”

“You must decide for yourself,” said Elizabeth; “and if, upon mature deliberation, you find that the misery of disobliging his two guild mates is more than equivalent to the happiness of being his main healer, I advise you by all means to refuse him.”

“How can you talk so?” said Jane, faintly smiling. “You must know that though I should be exceedingly grieved at their disapprobation, I could not hesitate.”

“I did not think you would; and that being the case, I cannot consider your situation with much compassion.”

“But if he returns no more, my choice will never be required. A thousand things may arise while he is away!”

The idea of his returning no more Elizabeth treated with the utmost contempt. It appeared to her merely the suggestion of Caroline’s interested wishes, and she could not for a moment suppose that those wishes, however openly or artfully spoken, could influence a tank so totally independent of everyone.

She represented to Jane as forcibly as possible what she felt on the subject, and had soon the pleasure of seeing its happy effect. Jane’s temper was not desponding, and she was gradually led to hope, though the diffidence of affection sometimes overcame the hope, that Bingley would return to the server and answer every wish of her heart.

They agreed that Mrs. Bennet should only hear of the departure of the guild, without being alarmed on the score of the tank’s conduct; but even this partial communication gave her a great deal of concern, and she bewailed it as exceedingly unlucky that they should happen to go away just as they were all getting so intimate together. After lamenting it, however, at some length, she had the consolation that Mr. Bingley would be soon over again and soon dining on fish feast crafted in <Longbourn>, and the conclusion of all was the comfortable declaration, that though he had been invited only to a guild raid, she would take care to have two types of feasts and extra flasks.

Mistakes, expectations and which one I will take responsibility for

Mistakes, I’ve made a few. I can admit it.

One thing I have always tried to do when I have made a mistake is to learn from it. What could I have done differently? What other options did I have? How might I have achieved my desired outcome? What will I do if I encounter this same type of situation in the future?

A mistake I’ve made

Sometimes it’s easy to see what I might have done differently. Take the initial trigger in the drama bomb that led up to me leaving WWAB. It was pretty innocent at the time, I thought. Someone in a raid sent me a tell basically whining that the raid wasn’t moving forward because people were too busy playing with their mini pets.

I didn’t really think too much at the time about my actions. From the tell, it sounded as though most of the raid was goofing off. I certainly didn’t know who was or wasn’t. I popped into the vent channel for that raid and mildly said something like, “Hey, guys, raid time is raid time. It’s not time to play with pets.”

As it turned out, only one person had been goofing off and not only was she an officer, she was supposed to be leading the raid. She felt called out. Which I think she should have. But she was also overly sensitive about it and a seed of resentment was planted. A little seed that grew into a fuck off enormous tree of petty revenges.

I should have taken that complaint to the officer channel and asked the officers who were in the raid what was up and who was goofing off. The matter would have been dealt with and much QQ could likely have been avoided.

Oh hindsight, you bitch.

A mistake I tried not to make again

More recently, I had a somewhat similar situation arise. Someone in vent said something that they shouldn’t have. Rather than get all over their case in a public manner, I casually brought it up later. In fact, I have done so a few times now.

But someone else who heard the comment and wasn’t privy to my discussions afterwards assumed I had let it slide. Out of that assumption and several other observations, this person accused me of a few things, including playing favorites.

When I was first starting to try to deal with this unexpected situation, I found myself initially thinking that perhaps I had learned the wrong lesson. Should have I laid the smackdown on in vent? Said something about how we would just talk about that later? Did I need to let everyone know that a serious discussion would take place without letting them know the outcome or the content?

And mostly, did I really want to keep doing this leadership thing if all it meant was that no matter which people I surrounded myself with, they would all always be ascribing me motives and thoughts and actions or lack of actions that weren’t necessarily accurate?

What I have learned

After giving myself more time to think, I don’t believe that the lesson I learned was wrong or that I handled the recent situation inappropriately. I do believe that being in a leadership position will continue to be a source of frustration and heartache for me if I don’t learn to stop taking responsibility for other people’s expectations.

The person who accused me of playing favorites seems to have had an expectation that I should have publicly jumped all over the person who spoke out of turn in vent. While I might have done something to help create that expectation through my actions long ago with that other officer, I don’t think I can or should take responsibility for that expectation still being alive and well in this person’s mind. After all, they saw the fruit of that mistake and the only logical thing to conclude is that I would try to avoid making the same mistake again.

Along with that, I can’t take responsibility for situations where people pass judgments on me without ever bothering to talk to me about whatever leadership failing they think I am displaying. Nor can I spend all my time explaining my every thought and action to everyone who might have read it wrong. It’s too much to ask of anyone.

It’s likely pertinent to note that this new guild is without officers because I expected people to be able to police themselves. I don’t see the need to BE WROTH AND SMITE THEM ALL just because I happen to be the GM. Being the GM of adults shouldn’t require me to babysit and I just won’t do it. I will deal with legitimate problems, but as long as everyone is making progress towards our stated goals, I don’t really care how they go about it.

So now I am hoping I have learned a good and truthful lesson from this latest accusation of making mistakes. And I am trying to internalize that I am not culpable for other people’s expectations not being met. Lastly, I have determined that I will not spend any more time trying to defend myself to these particular accusations. If the history of my character isn’t enough for someone to believe my stated intentions, then what good will mere words do?

But I still wish things hadn’t shaken out this way.

much afraid

Is it wrong to admire a fictional character that I control and for whom I make decisions? Because I do. I admire Alas so very much. She’s brave and confident in a way that I just am not. I’m certain it helps that she doesn’t really need to fear anything. There’s no public speaking in WoW (aside from that one speech you have to give in Hyjal and that’s really just blurting out random thoughts) and the worst possible thing that could happen (Death) is totally reversible because it’s Never Quite Your Time, Young Adventurer.

Alas and I both had our worlds changed around the same time. Hers was remodeled by an angry dragon aspect who does surprisingly good work for being so angry and bent on destruction and mine was a combination of cross-country moving and changing guilds. The guild thing doesn’t really figure, but I wanted to be as un-subtle as possible about directing you to my new page about it.

Did you turn into a hick?

I was talking with my sister yesterday following my little excursion downtown to meet with a guy who will be attempting to pimp me out for a rather nice job with a rather large firm. It’s weird to me, since I have always sought my own  jobs, but these tend to be temp to hire, so I suppose it’s handled differently. Anyhow, as anyone who saw me tweeting about my certainty that I was going to throw up knows, I was a bundle of nerves. And it wasn’t just this meeting/interview thing.

This city that I have loved and missed and spent 20 years of my life in, overwhelms me just now. When I said as much to my sister, she looked up and laughed at me. “Did you turn into a hick?”

I just might have.

But the month I have spent here, more or less cooping myself up in the basement, dealing with the outside world via the Internet, I have started to wonder why I am letting myself be so overwhelmed by these changes. It reminds me of when I first got married and moved to Missouri – when I cried pretty much every day for the first six months, often inconsolably.

I’m not crying now; I’m actually rather happy and forever adding to my mental list of reasons why I love this place, but I also lack confidence.

Reason 4765

And I could say that things have changed. They have, and in many cases the change has been tremendous. Whole tracts of land that I recall being open desert are now shopping centers, packed with trendy restaurants and upscale stores. My old neighborhood looks shockingly slum-like and the shopping center that I walked to nearly every day has nothing but one huge swath of abandoned buildings. But the road system is still the same, so how goddamn hard could it be to get around?

It really isn’t. But I am still overwhelmed.

How did this happen?

I keep asking myself why this should be so difficult. I’ve admittedly never been the most outgoing of people, but even I can see and admit that I am being ridiculously timid about embracing my new life, especially since I am in a familiar place. And other than spending most of a decade living in the rural Midwest (but never quite fitting in), I haven’t experienced anything that could explain how traumatized I feel in trying to make this adjustment.

But feelings often don’t make a whole lot of sense so maybe there is no explanation and perhaps it doesn’t do me any good to sit around and suppose that some part of me fears meeting with the same sort of rejection I faced at nearly every turn in Missouri.

Or maybe it’s just damned uncomfortable to not only confront some of the things of which I am so much afraid, but to do so with the potential of then sharing this weakness with the 10 people who might read this and see just how foolish I can be.

I do know I don’t want to be this person. And if I faced some fears yesterday and came out okay, why can’t I do the same today?

Gotta face my Deathwing

I don’t want WoW to be a form of escapism for me, but I do want to learn to be a bit more like Alas. She doesn’t care that the scenery has changed in the old world she once knew and has returned to. It doesn’t bother her a bit that things that used to be easy (like getting through Deadmines) have changed to the point where it’s now a bit more of a slog. And she certainly doesn’t mind getting out of Stormwind and exploring the wider world, seeing what all those quartermasters have to offer.

Perhaps it’s all just a matter of perspective.