Judged.   21 comments

My life was judged this weekend by how much perceived time I spend in WoW.  The person that made this assessment knows almost nothing about me, but does play WoW themselves.  I do not know this person outside of the game, and I do not know them well inside of the game either.  But on Saturday night, they began to criticize my life, my relationships…and of all things my dog (yea…I have a schnauzer, she barks at everything, it happens to be a schnauzer trait, it doesn’t mean that I’m ignoring my dog).  When I calmly advised them that they knew nothing about my life, I was met with “You have 6 80′s, I know all I need to know about your life”.  Now, I actually only have 5 80′s.  But seriously?  How the fuck does the number of characters I level to 80 become a reflection on how I live my life?

I thought that I could just let this go, but I can’t and it has been eating at me for two days now.  It really, truly bothers me.  I am just baffled that someone who doesn’t even know me, judged my life based on the number of level 80 toons I posses.  I know that I shouldn’t care, that this person is absolutely nobody to me, and that I should just brush it off and not think twice about it.  But I am proud of the accomplishments in my life, and to have somebody come in and tell me my life is shit has me incensed enough to feel that I need to review with someone…anyone, how I spend my free time.

  • First off my significant other also plays wow (and oddly enough, has MORE 80′s than I do).  WoW is something that we both enjoy, and play together.  Neither of us are into the “club” scene.  Neither of us are into the “going out” scene.  And we both like video games.  I fail to see how doing something that you enjoy with your S/O makes you a failure at life.  Or how it means that you are sacrificing your relationship to, you know, do something with the other person in that relationship.
  • Somewhat on that same note, do you know what we’d do if we were playing WoW?!  Likely be playing something else…or becoming couch potatoes.  You know, those people who spend MORE time in front of the TV than I spend in WoW.  But, if they are sitting in front of the TV melting their brains that is OK, because they aren’t leveling another 80 in WoW, so they MUST be making better life decisions than I am, amirite?
  • Things I like to do outside of WoW:  Watch movies, drag Brade to musical theatre, read, play with my puppy and enjoy peachbellinis. 
  • Things that I do outside of WoW: Watch movies, drag Brade to musical theatre, read, play with my puppy and enjoy peachbellinis.  Imagine that!  I do ALL of those things…even with 5 level 80′s.  Oh…you know what else I manage squeeze into my life?  A full time job.  I don’t know…something about responsibility.  But, of course, I couldn’t know anything about that, because I have 5 level 80s, and clearly people with 5 level 80′s can’t maintain a life.
  • Do you know WHY I have 5 level 80′s (and will likely have more before the next expansion hits)?  BECAUSE I ENJOY LEVELING.  And do you know what happens when you level?  YOU REACH THE LEVEL CAP.  Which happens to be…level 80.  Heaven forbid I actually partake in something I enjoy.  It’s only MY life after all.
  • My enjoyment with WoW ebbs and flows.  Sometimes I spend a lot of my free time in the game and sometimes I’m only in the game when I raid (15 hours a week), and then log out right after.  But it’s my choice how often I play.  I don’t stay up all hours of the night to play, I get to bed at a reasonable hour because I don’t like being tired at work.  And because I like watching a spot of Law and Order, NCIS or Monk before falling asleep.
  • WoW remains cheap entertainment.  Hi, I have student loans that I’d like to pay off before I die.  You know what that means?  I am more than content to stay home and entertain myself than go out and spend money that I really shouldn’t.  It’s this little thing known as fiscal responsibility, but of course, I wouldn’t know anything about that having 5 80′s.
  • Last but not least…I HAVE FUN playing WoW.  I do play a lot in my free time, but it’s because I enjoy it.  It’s not the only thing that I enjoy doing in my free time, and it’s not the only thing I do in my free time.  If I am guilty of shirking anything because of the time I spend in WoW, it’s getting some exercise in.  But guess what?!?!  I sucked at that long before WoW, and will probably still suck at it long after I quit WoW.

So, you know what?  Yes, I have 5 80′s.  I am proud of my 5 80′s.  You know what else?  I also have a very stable, healthy life outside of WoW.  I don’t have anything to prove to you random person that deems themself in a position to pass judgment upon me, even though I feel obligated to defend myself.  You are nobody to me, are in no way involved in my life, and have no basis in which to judge me.  So fuck off.

Posted November 23, 2009 by Beruthiel in /rant

21 responses to “Judged.

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  1. <3 You tell 'em.

    What an ass.

  2. *hugs*

    I’d much rather spend a night in playing WoW than wasting a tonne of money on going out, drinking. Yet that is the more socially acceptable thing to do on your Friday and Saturday nights.

    Like you, WoW just replaces time that I might normally be watching TV – I hardly watch any, these days. Most people watch 3 – 6 (or even more) hours of TV a day, but attract no attention. 3-6 hours of Warcraft a day, and you’re a failure at life.

    I work two jobs, and I still get plenty of opportunities to go outside, play with my dog, water my garden, read a book, go shopping, or watch a movie. I’m not holed up in a cave playing WoW until my eyes bleed – despite having half a dozen 70+ characters.

    As long as I know I’m happy, I’ll keep playing. If I begin to feel that the game has a negative effect on my life, I’ll slow down or stop. For now, though, it’s a really cheap and safe form of entertainment that engages my brain more than TV or boozing would. It can’t be all that bad :)

    • I totally get you! It frustrates me that it’s socially acceptable to sit in front of the telly but not acceptable in interact with a game?!

      My puppy loves to snuggle with us while we play, Brade’s got the more comfortable lap, but she gets her fair share of time in my lap. We often joked that if we could teach her to mash the (insert whatever class we are recruiting at the time) button, we’d get her a wow account :)

      WoW is better than the telly or the club in so many ways!

  3. Peach Bellinis are the absolute best. :)

    Aside from that, there’s an awful lot of stupid in the world. Sadly, just when you think you’ve found all the stupid, more pops up and gets in your way.

    The way I look at it, I’m spending $15 a month on WoW instead of $100-200 a month on new books to read (yeah yeah library etc, but I get visceral pleasure from OWNING books, even when they’re just trashy novels and not high-brow lit), $50 a month for a cable subscription, and $50-100 to go out for dinner/drinks/coffee/etc. So for my $15 I’m getting the equivalent of between $200 and $350 of entertainment. I still go out with friends and do fun things with my husband, but I’m spending significantly less than I would if I didn’t play WoW because there’s so much to do (even if all I’m doing is bouncing around Dalaran talking about random shit with guildies over vent).

    Besides, I’d bet that whoever it was that was criticizing you was projecting their personal issues onto you. I’m pretty sure there’s something about glass houses and stones…

    • Hehe, yes, sounds like someone was seeing their own faults and trying to console themselves that someone else must be doing things “worse” than them, for some ego epeen power trip. Frankly, spending $15/month is a whole heck of a lot cheaper than spending the amount of money a bar or club would require for the same amount of time, and is far more entertaining than “drowning sorrows” or dulling your intellectual capacity and inhibitions with alcohol, or watching the antics of the drunks and wondering who might get hurt that night as they drive home. How is that not wasting their lives?

      Or zoning out in front of the TV watching nothing but sports or soap operas?

      WoW gamers are perfectly capable of keeping up with recreational sports, martial arts, dance, swimming, gym memberships, art, and outside volunteer work. And raising kids. I dunno, maybe something like “this game’s been out for 5 years” might be an indicator of how easy it is to have a ton of max-level characters and still have an enjoyable, productive, healthy life.

      • @Kae – I think you are correct with trying to reflect their issues onto someone else to make themselves feel better.

        What’s a shame is that even though there is good programming on the telly (i.e. discovery channel, national geographic channel, pbs) most folks don’t watch it :(

        It really is very easy to have multiple characters at max level, especially considering the length of time between each expansion.

        Speaking of which…Kitai is creeping her way towards Titan Grip! RAWR!

    • I love to read as well, but limit what I buy in hardcover to things I deem “must haves” and then wait for the much cheaper paperbacks to release before making a purchase.

      Brade and I do still go out, but we have a lot of fun staying in as well, and I just don’t see anything wrong with that option. Hell, when I was young, “going out” to my parents was taking me up the street to the park! Getting to go to the movies was like a twice a year ordeal that was a special treat for us. Perhaps I just grew up on cheap entertainmet, and the habit has stuck ;)

      I think you are absolutely spot on with people living in glass houses and throwing stones being the case in this scenario though.

      • Yeah I try to hold off on hardcover books unless I just can’t live without it. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. :D Thankfully my husband humors me and my book addiction for the most part.

        I wish cable companies would unbundle their channels. I would love to have cable just so that I could have the History, Discovery, and Food Network channels. I just don’t want to get all the OTHER channels to go along with those three.

        And it’s definitely easy to level characters now (not that I have any to show for it since I can’t ever get past level 26 on my alts). Somehow I end up bouncing around in Dalaran chit chatting instead of questing and chit chatting. Apparently my multi-tasking ability ends once raids are over. :P

  4. What’s a peach bellini? I get the distinct feeling I’m missing something good.

    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bellini_(cocktail)

      “The Bellini consists of puréed white peaches and Prosecco, an Italian sparkling wine. Marinating fresh peaches in wine is an Italian tradition.[2] The original recipe was made with a bit of raspberry or cherry juice to give the drink a pink glow.[4] Due, in part, to the limited availability of both white peaches and Prosecco, several variations exist.

      California produces a white peach that works well,[6] and yellow peaches or peach nectar can be substituted, especially if peaches are out of season and the flavor would be very bland. Other fruits or even flavoured liqueurs (peach schnapps, for example) are sometimes substituted for the peach puree.

      Other sparkling wines are commonly used in place of Prosecco, though richly flavored French champagne does not pair well with the light, fruity flavor of the Bellini. For a non-alcoholic version, sparkling juice (like sparkling cider) or seltzer is used in place of the champage”.

  5. Poor Beru :( Sounds like some male inferiority complex at work there, instead of manning up and dealing with it they make insidious nasty comments to others instead.

    Only you know if you are balancing the areas of your life and are happy!

    And as it’s summer here in Australia, I think I might have to make some of those Peach Bellini’s this weekend – what is it about cocktails and hot weather, they just go so well together!

  6. I want a Peach Bellini! White peaches… well they’re almost in season… and if I can sub in another sparkling wine…

    Don’t worry about it. The person who gave you grief about leveling so many characters probably found leveling extremely difficult and time-consuming. Tell him/her that you have perfected it into an art and you could give the power levelers a run for their money. “It’s not like it’s hard. lol” usually cuts people off at the knees.

    • I bet you could use a Muscat D’Asti (my favorite sparkler) in them and they’d be so tasty!

      I think one of the things I like about leveling is that while I am doing it, I am totally free to get up from the game. I can have an impromtu game of fetch with the puppy, I can listen to musical soundtracks and sing along (and listen to Brade groan!), I can pop in a movie I haven’t seen for a bit and half pay attention. I also have the option to totally immerse myself in the game, by turning off all outside sound and cranking up my game sound a bit.

      However you level, though, unlike in a raid, you are 100% in control of everything else going on, and it IS so easy to say “sure, let’s go out to dinner and a movie” because it’s just you doing your thing on your schedule :)

      • Muscat(o) d’Asti is SO good. Bonny Doon (winery here in CA) used to have a great version that I absolutely love, but they stopped making it when they changed the winery to being biodynamic. :(

        And damnit, I want a bellini now.

  7. I’m distracted by the peach bellinis now … even if you do have 5 80s you clearly have excellent taste in champagne cocktails.

    Joking aside, I can totally see why this rankles with you. It’s infuriating, and so utterly … God … what’s the word? Gah! Yes, gah will do. To be fair, as several people have mentioned above, the guy clearly had a bee in his bonnet about something – insecurity regarding his own life and values, possibly. But it still doesn’t make it any more excusable that he’d take his crap out on you.

    I also think there’s an element of social pressure at work here – computer games are just the latest in a long line of things society looks down on. I remember when I was a small Tam, I wasn’t allowed to watch too much television in case I got “square eyes” and a generally rotted brain. Nowadays nobody cares about how much time you spend watching TV, it’s all about computer game which are turning us into socially incompetant zombies or whatever.

    Not to put words in your mouth or anything but what’s particularly unforgiveable about this dickhead being rude to you is that it comes from *within* the game. We’re pretty much prepared to be scorned, or at least misunderstood, by the rest of the world but you’d think in Azeroth there’d be a tacit agreement that we all supported each other in our shared enjoyment of the game.

    *hugs*

    Anyway, no healz for him, right?

    • GAH! It fits perfectly!

      Like you, when I was growing up, we were only permitted to watch television for a set amount of time each day, and my mother made us read for an hour every day (probably why I’m such an avid reader now!). Now, I don’t know if that made me a better individual as an adult, but I’m positive it made me at least more educated than I might have been otherwise! :)

      I think your are right about society always having something they don’t fully “get” and then trying to sort of pin all the current issues on those mis-understood things. I guess it’s good I didn’t live back in the roarin’ 20s, cause I love Jazz…and although I’d probably be too much of a goody tooshoes to have drank during prohibition, I would have been guilty by association just for my desire to listen to the music!

      And you are likely spot on that part of what got under my skin so badly about this was that it DID come from inside the game. WTF.

  8. Looking beyond the fact that this guy had no right or rhyme or reason to make these sorts of assumptions about your life, it amuses me that people measure this sort of stuff by the number of max level characters you have.

    I have one 80. But with the amount of fishing, herbing, going for the gold cap, battlegrounding (is this a verb?), arena-ing I do in addition to general raiding, I think I spend just as much time as others do spread across several 80s.

    • It really was a /facepalm moment. I see people make poor assumptions all the time about people in any number of ways, and it makes me angry. While I’m far from perfect, I at least try to keep up an open mind about things.

      I also know people, who like yourself, love the game but are hugely identified with one character and spend a lot of time in game, but just on the one toon. It’s really all about how you enjoy the game. Some folks like leveling, some folks like fishing, some folks like working the AH. The diversity that the game offers is one thing that I like so much about it, and likely part of it’s staying power to date!

  9. As someone with 6 80′s and still enjoys doing stuff outside of the game. I totally understand why this would rankle you. I’ve been playing for a couple years now and its not like it takes that long to level a toon. In fact Blizzard keeps doing things to speed up the process and make it faster so I’m surprised that more people don’t have more 80′s. I find that so many people in the game just want to tell you you’re doing it wrong no matter what it was. He would have found something to say to criticise you because you are not playing the game exactly like he does and so you are wrong and he is right, which is of course the point of the mmorpg right being self-centered about the game :)

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