WoW: an Act of Intimacy

“The expectations of life depend upon diligence; the mechanic that would perfect his work must first sharpen his tools.”

An Act of Intimacy

When you are a raider: you wear a headset. You will spend a few hours each week communicating with ten or more fellow ambitious strivers in the World of Warcraft. There is some kind of “connectedness” that comes when so many people are on the same ambition.

I have spent most of my life doing live events. Theater, ballet, modern dance, Balinese dance, opera, symphony, musicals, rock and roll and a smattering of other arts. Life was on a headset, sometimes barely whispering backstage; quiet and close even though a hundred yards away.

The software we use in raiding; Vent, Mumble, Discord and the rest are a long ways from the professional systems that I’m used to having on my fat head. The quality and response is not the same. Like the need to type “lol” even if you are not really laughing to continue a chat line, you have to turn on your mic so others can hear you laughing; gotta keep the stuff a-moving!

This is a unique freedom. Being able to speak without being seen lets us bloom and be creative, be funny and be bold; hopefully in the best of ways. Phone Sex is popular for the same reasons; I think every marriage councilor should recommend phone sex for husbands and wives or couples!

The professional standards in headset etiquette simply can not be expected in raiding. People will eat and smack and swear with a hot mic (drives me crazy!). There is not a lot at stake either. I have to laugh when just as we pull a boss and everyone is on edge when someone says a thing about Fifty Shades of Gray and we all fall apart laughing. It’s a wipe and it is fun.

Leaders are rare. Being led by someone who can hold a team together takes a lot of things you can’t pin down; like charisma and charm. The good one’s are surprised when you thank them, they are naturals. Not everyone is that way; thank your leaders.

One time a touring show came to our theater. We all got on headset about 30 minutes before curtain. A soft southern female said, “Hello boys. We were in Phoenix last night and they told me that you were the best crew in the Southwest.” It was a con job but we loved it and rose to the expectation.


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