I swear, I’m not trying to swipe Keeva’s idea. She just has some post-provoking posts! Plus, this is way way way too long for comment space.
P.S. I do mention cover a bit about rape below. Beware for triggers. Though, honestly, I’m not totally solid on what can trigger distress about past sexual assaults. If I did, I’d try my best to avoid it entirely.
Before I Put My Foot in My Mouth Again
I’ve been doing that a lot, recently. Frankly, my sneakers need a good cleaning, and besides, day-old rain tastes weird.
I do agree with practically everything Keeva said. I’m not 100% but I’m maybe 99% agreed. Perhaps that makes me a bit of a bigot, but, eh, I do hold that I will stop all intolerant remarks if someone tells me straight up that it makes them even the slightest uncomfortable.
Retard =/= Stupid
I know people get angry because “retard” is often used for “stupid,” and it generally comes from describing interactions mentally disabled people.
I have never used “retard” to describe mentally disabled people. Maybe when I was younger and didn’t really know what “retard” meant, but ever since I learned the Latin root (~6th grade), I’ve never used it that way. It’s completely in a different ballpark from the mentally disabled.
Maybe that comes from having an aunt who has been mentally disabled from birth. I think she’s autistic, don’t know for sure, but she’s in her 50s now and she acts & interacts with others in way that belongs more to age 5. And no, that’s not a slur against her; that’s how it is. More precisely, it’s how it appears to me, someone who isn’t solid at all on autism.
I use “retard” to mean something backward or slow to grasp. Y’know, the Latin root: re = back, tard = slow. The majority (if not entirety) of my usage is when I do something particularly dumb. It’s usually followed by a Derp sound, even though I know the internet/4chan has probably turned that into something bad.
It still slips out every now and then, but I’m mostly converted to the phrase, “Well, that was dumb…Durrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr, Megan, where’s your brain?” And no, I’ve been using the durrrrr sound for my own stupid mistakes way before I ever mentally connected it with being slow or dumb or disabled.
Gay =/= Stupid
I admit, I’ve yet to encounter bisexual in the flesh. But I have met and found myself lucky enough to call both gay and lesbian couples really good friends.
I abhor the use of gay as stupid.
It never really impacted me until senior year in high school when the area schools participated in a Mock Government Assembly. Of course, this was the year when bans on gay marriage were really in the forefront of the media, so we naturally had one such bill attempt to go through. Sadly, it lost, but I remember the idiots in the room arguing against it, using the word “gay” like it meant someone inferior.
I went to a Governor’s School, that is one of those “gifted & talented” (that’s another post about that bullshit) things. Pretty much all my dual-credit and about half my AP credits came from there. You weren’t any slob if you were in that school, and it was pretty competitive to boot.
There was a guy there who was clearly and openly gay. He was actually in a relationship with a flute player from my high school, a guy who I swear was Flute/Piccolo God. Seriously, you didn’t distinguish this guy as the Token Guy Who Plays Flute/Piccolo, you distinguished him because he was first chair in pretty much everything he tried. He was amazing!
Anyway, so we’re in that Mock Assembly, the G-School guy is sitting behind me, and the idiots in the room who didn’t know him (or probably anyone who is homosexual) were doing the same things that happen in PUGs. That is, they were using “gay” as a term for “stupid” or inferiority.
It infuriated me to say the least. Enough that I got up and didn’t feel anxious at all stating my opinion/vouching for the marriage bill, when normally public speaking of any kind makes me shake and stammer visibly.
STOP using “gay” for stupid. It’s SO NOT cool. AT ALL.
Flirting & Joking — Where’s the “Line”?
I do flirt playfully with my female friends from time to time, joking about being pretend lesbians. It actually came up with my roommate recently, who happens to also be my best friend. We work one day a week together (then we work other days), and people know we’re roommates. She told me about how she would be happy whenever she realized it was Saturday and that I was coming to work in a few hours (she starts before I do), and then that people might think that we were roommates in the sense that we shared a room, rather than the truthful sharing an apartment.
One of my guy friends said we should just totally play it up. I was all for that. I will play up flirting with guys, so the gender change didn’t even cross my mind. I kept thinking of it as flirting with my friend, who just happens to be a girl, just like I flirt with my friends who just happen to be guys.
I’ll even go into sexual innuendos quite often. I got used to it from being around guys for the most part in high school by being the Token Math/Sci/Tech Girl. I don’t want to downplay it, but it happens when you’re the only girl in the middle of robotics class, and the guys start pawing at the tools on the table, claiming and naming the stripper tools. Guys will act like guys if the only girl in the room is practically a tomboy anyway. I mean, guys will note quite easily and repeatedly point out that “stripper” has two different meanings.
The “line” for me is whether they truly mean it or not. It’s not enough to say you were joking just to get out of being an asshole. You’ve got to seriously not mean it at all. I don’t flirt with random people I meet.
How do I know if you truly don’t mean anything?
I did have an uncomfort when a guy (who later became an awesome Robe and even one of my lock buddies in raid) seemed to flirt a little too much with me. I told an RL guy friend who was also a Robe. A guy I sometimes trade sexual jokes with (engineers, we’ve got plenty of puns to go around). He immediately offered to step in and “defend” me if necessary. After I made a note on the guy’s app about my initial uncomfort with him, the mage I used to trade horrible, horrible sex puns with immediately whispered me once I got online to make sure I was okay with the joking between us.
If I ask you to stop it with the jokes, and you comply, no questions asked, especially even express to me genuine concern for what you might have unknowingly done, you’re cool.
I can’t explain in words exactly where that line is. It’s a feeling more than anything. It’s a sense of trusting you or not. If you ever cross the “line,” even a toe over it, it takes a long time for you to gain that trust back (if you EVER do at all).
I flirt because I trust you not to — well, heh — not to fuck it up.
Maybe that’s not the best phrasing, or maybe it is.
Is just not cool. At all. My serious face is staring at you right now.
I’m not saying it’s “just not cool” because I grew up with the Backstreet Boys (I can still name all five without looking it up) and Britney Spears When She Was Somewhat Good and that’s, LYK, omg, like, how we 90s/00s peeps talk.
It’s not cool.
Anyone, I know them or not, gets an immediate /ignore for life (or, at least, for a time measured in years) if s/he EVER uses rape to describe defeating a boss or enemy player. Even IRL, now that I’m getting some RL confidence and self-esteem back, fellow classmates who say, “That test raped me,” get a glare and a very serious, monotone, “Don’t use rape in that way, please.”
It’s. NOT. Cool. Or even acceptable. AT ALL.
Do I have a personal story for this one? Yeah, actually, I do, but telling it would betray confidence put in me years ago, and no. Just no. You shouldn’t need a story, and the story shouldn’t have to exist.
I’ve been lucky to personally see very few examples of this.
I have seen Jew jokes, but the two (known) intended targets of the Jew jokes have made it clear it doesn’t bother them, and I’ve not seen Jew jokes go outside these people. (We once called a guy HamJew because he was technically Jewish, but he freely and fully ate things like pepperoni and ham and pork quite often. He would make fun of his eating pork as well. If you ask him, he’s strongly agnostic. It’s one of those, “I’m agnostic…unless you ask my mother, then I’m Jewish.”)
I’ve not seen the n-word in quite a long time. For the most part it takes me a half minute to “get” a race joke, because I just don’t normally distinguish it.
Unless you count me making fun of my Gaelic heritage causing me to fully roast myself in the summer. WTB skin that has shades of tan in between “glowing” and “beet red.”
So That’s Me
Perhaps I’m still not an amazing person when it comes to respect. I can’t promise old habits won’t crop up every once in a while, but I can promise to cease and desist if ever someone asks, in the slightest.
My guild just died. I got to watch.
Overnight, somebody had a pissy fit and whipped out a threat of physical violence at a guild RL gathering and just like that. Boom. My guild died.
I logged on to find the GM had stepped down and then I watched him leave. THe entire day I couldn’t log off because I was afraid I’d miss the chance to say another goodbye. Half my favorite people are gone.
I don’t log onto WoW to theorycraft or to raid or to do quests or to WoW. I log on to play with my Robes, my family.
And now my Robes are gone, almost. I say almost, there are some of us left, it was huge schism, though. So there’s still The Scarlet Robes, been around on US-Eonar Alliance since forever, but we’re tattered scraps.
I’m still terribly sad, devastated, and a little shocked. So maybe posts will come just so I can write my way through pain or maybe I’ll leave off here for a bit. I’ll try to keep up the TNWiki like I said I’d start, though.
Green isn’t working very well. How about orange? Or purple? Druid & warlock, heh, heh.
I’m having issues with some of the topics cropping up in blogs now. Particularly the “Worst PuG Ever” or the “LFG sucks because” posts. Because they generally deal with problems between people, but it gets blamed on some addon or the game mechanics of Blizzard’s new Dungeon Finder. I swear, it’s a people problem, guys.
I use GearScoreLite. It puts the GearScore in the tooltip when I mouseover your toon’s unit, and I’ve chosen to put in the average ilvl as well. Honestly, I wish I could turn off the GS and just use the average ilvl. But there’s no option for that.
Originally I started using it in raid as a warlock. I would see other warlocks or dps specs beating me in the Repeencount and I wanted to know if I was sucking or if I was merely outgeared. Unfortunately, people like to move in raids. I’d try to catch a moment to inspect somebody, but really only the tier pieces are recognizable by icon. Often someone would move before I could catch what the name was or the tooltip that said where it dropped. I had a vague idea of how ilvl corresponded to where it dropped. 200 for Naxx10/OS/EoE/t7 10 & purples in heroics. 213 for Naxx25/OS/EoE/t7.5. 226 for Ulduar10/t8. Etc. I had heard of GS, looked it up, and lo and behold, it had a Lite version that just put the ilvl in the tooltip. Perfect.
I use the average ilvl in the opening 30 seconds of every pug. Y’know, before anyone says hello or before a mob pack gets pulled. I use it to gauge how much I can goof off during a heroic. Like answering IMs. Really, chances are I’m talking enthusiatically in guild chat or with my friend on Pidgin while I’m healing your heroic. Or tanking. Or dpsing.
I don’t use it to judge your gear or your skill or your chances of winning the Nobel Peace Prize. I just use it to gauge if I need to take a chill pill since the heroic isn’t going to be superfast because people are in heroics/Naxx10 gear (ilvl 200) or if that DK is in fact being a slob because there’s no way his ilvl 226 gear would be putting out under 2k dps. The only times I recall negative thoughts in my head relating to GS is when somebody underperforms in their current gear. I really do not mind people in 187 ilvl gear in heroics with me. That’s why heroics drop ilvl 200 gear. DUH. However, I do believe the 187 people should not be in ToC5+* or new ICC 5mans. Why? ToC5+ drops 219 gear. Theoretically, 219 ilvl drops means you should be in mostly 200-213s, not fresh off the questing street. 232s from the new ICC 5mans were meant for the people like me who didn’t terribly raid ToC in patch 3.2 but who ground enough heroics to be decked out in the gear you can get from Conquest Emblem vendors (226 ilvl). So what I do have a problem with are fresh 80s in blues & greens in an instance that drops 232 gear, because that’s a 2 tier gear difference. Would you take someone in Uld10 normal mode gear to ICC raiding? No, you’d probably say go to ToCr for a few drops and then come back. Maybe you wouldn’t majorly suck in that gear in that raid, but you wouldn’t be what most guilds are looking for in a member for that raid.
Yes, I realize you can get emblems to buy 232/245 gear just by doing heroics. But you can’t just do one heroic and poof 232/245 emblem gear. The lowest cost is 30 emblems for a non ranged-slot (idol, librarm, totem) piece. 30 emblems is about 6-8 heroics, depending on the heroic you get. Per piece. That’s enough time in between to learn how to play your class and role in endgame. I believe gear doesn’t make you a better player. It just makes your output numbers bigger, is all.
Bottom line for me in letting a jerk intimidate you in group for a lacking gearscore is the same as letting them intimidate you for a low Recount spam rank. It’s your problem if they bother you. If you think you rock, then you rock. It’s also a problem when people don’t stand up for newbies being shamed for this. I don’t tolerate people who chew other people out when they’re there to gear up and are honestly trying. If someone is trying to be just carried along and play loot monkey, well…I don’t tolerate that either. I’m there to get emblems, so more than likely I’ll continue to the group until it’s done, but you’re on my ignore list after that.
I use GearScoreLite, but lightly. It’s not a major factor in my opinion of a player; it’s lighter than fluff, actually.
* In my shorthand I use 5/10/25 for the size of the raid and + for heroic or hardmode. So Uld10+ is hardmode Ulduar 10, OS+3 is 3 drakes, ToC5+ is Trial of the Champion heroic.