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Look Upon My Gear, Ye Mighty, And Repair
by Rob Wynne
TTTO: "Dust In The Wind" by Kansas

My warlock casts
Conjure up a demon from the fiery depths
The spell falls flat
My spec is gone, and everything I learned is wrong
Bits in the code
All we are is bits in the code

Once we strode
Like giants through the endgame, doing mighty deeds
But glory fades
Your grand achievements now just curiosities
Bits in the code
All we are is bits in the code

Game moves on
Level cap increases, once again we grind
New quests call
And all your epics won't another level buy
Bits in the code
All we are is bits in the code

This morning (28 December 2012) in the Tadpool, discussing the current WoW expansion and whether it was worth coming back to, Cory Latham made a comment about having too much time invested in his characters to roll new ones, and Christopher Dunn quipped that all that was meaningless, only the current expansion matters. And that got my filker brain working and this came out.

There have been two more World of Warcraft expansions that have come out since I wrote this, and it's still true, which hasn't always been true of my WoW filks :)
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In 1994, Blizzard Entertainment came out with a real-time strategy computer game called "Warcraft: Orcs & Humans". It was well received in the gaming community, but I paid it very little notice personally.

One year later, a sequel was released, coming out just as I entered a six month period of unemployment. I ended up spending a lot of time playing Warcraft II, which was an awesome game.

By the time World of Warcraft in 2005, an MMO based on the same world as the RTS game, I was already deeply engaged with a game called City of Heroes. Some of my friends left CoH to play WoW, but I was still having a great time where I was, so I didn't pay it much mind. In fact, I kinda resented it for stealing away my friends from the game I was playing. My dismissing it didn't seem to cause it any lasting harm, though, and it grew like gangbusters.

Around the time that the first expansion for World of Warcraft came out, I was growing bored with City of Heroes/Villains. You can only go beat up the same bad guys in the same warehouse so many times before it starts to acquire a sense of sameness. So I asked [livejournal.com profile] eloren what server she and her hubby were playing on, bought the trial CD, and rolled a character.

I had no idea that this would change my life.

I played the game mostly solo, sometimes asking [livejournal.com profile] eloren to help me with difficult things or quests that required groups. I didn't really know anyone who was playing; well, that's not strictly true - I knew lots of people who were playing, and not one of them played on the same server as me or each other. I joined Jon and Aileen's guild, and got to know a few of the people there vaguely, but I was mostly just enjoying the game as a solo player. Then drama happened, as it so often does in guilds, and they broke up. A small group of friends went looking for a new guild to join, and ended up with a group called The Grim Covenant. They seemed nice enough, and I was invited to join them as well, even though I was still far below max-level.

This was a transformation experience. As I reached level 70 (the cap at the time) and started participating in group activities, I starting getting to know people. I began to feel like I belonged in the group. I began to form real and solid friendships with people.

And then I fell in love with one of them.

It wasn't on purpose; I certainly wasn't looking for a new relationship. We had just gotten to talking, which led to more talking which led to exchanging emails...at some point she found out I was polyamorous, and started to ask me questions about it. As time went on, we were spending more and more time talking to each other, and it was obvious to me that there was something between us growing deeper.

Honestly, the details at this point are beside the point. We met in person when [livejournal.com profile] kitanzi and I went up to visit a group of guildies for a trip to King Richard's Fair, a trip that had been organised well in advance of these developments. During that trip, we began officially dating, although only the people who needed to know this were aware of it.

A couple of years go by. Following the failure of her marriage, she decided that, in the end, poly wasn't something she felt she could handle, and we broke up. This is probably the hardest breakup I've ever been through; neither of us really wanted to and we both still loved one another deeply, but she was in a place where she needed to figure out who she was and what she was doing with her life, and this just wasn't part of it. Her finding out that polyamory wasn't for her after all was certainly a risk I'd been aware of when I started the relationship.

(I wrote and removed a lot of detail in the last three paragraphs, deciding it was largely beside the point. If you want to know more about what this was all about, email me, and we can talk.)

That was nearly a year ago, just before Valentine's Day. I spent the next few months being pretty broken as a result, withdrawing from a lot of people in the process. Part of my withdrawing was to quietly withdraw from the WoW guild we were both part of. I was an officer and raid leader, but those were roles I'd been increasingly frustrated with, and this gave me the excuse and the permission to just let go of them. I went to another server, where I’d established a character and made some casual friends, and set back to playing the game semi-casually. Eventually, I joined up with a small group of friends to begin raiding again, though never as hardcore as before, and that's been my focus for the last 12 months.

Now there's a new expansion out, and as the new year begins I'm reflecting again on my life and how i spend my time. The truth is, I still enjoy the game quite a lot. The new expansion is full of really interesting new things to explore. [livejournal.com profile] catalana and I still play together every week or so, working our way now through our second pair of characters since we began to play every Friday a couple of years ago. And I still have many people that are dear to me in the game, both in my old guild and in my new one, and others besides. Azeroth has become a comforting place to wile away my time.

But the thing is....time is the one thing in my life I never have enough of. And there's a lot of things that I want to do that want to compete with that time. I want to spend more time writing, both creative writing and blogging. I want to spend more time working on my musical interests. I want to catch up on some of the TV/movie watching that's been piling up. I want to just sit and read. Sometimes, I want to just sit.

Given that I'm not currently able to give up either work or sleep, I have to make some decisions about how to spend my time, and the decision I'm making right now is to take a vacation from World of Warcraft. I'm not saying I won't play it at all; I'm not giving up my nights with Erica, and it is a good way to kill an hour when you're in the mood for it. But aside from that regular session and the odd jaunt here and there, I'm going to spend a few weeks in pursuit of other hobbies, until I figure out the best way to create a balance that lets me do everything as I'd like to.

It feels very strange to step away from something that's dominated my leisure time for over four years. But ultimately, I think that right now it's best for me.
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Since I got a fair bit of response to yesterday's comments on Blizzard Entertainment's proposed forum policies and the privacy implications of them, I wanted to make sure and take the time to note that they are responding to their customers in a postive manner. Blizzard CEO Mike Morhaime made this post today on the game's forums:


Hello everyone,

I'd like to take some time to speak with all of you regarding our desire to make the Blizzard forums a better place for players to discuss our games. We've been constantly monitoring the feedback you've given us, as well as internally discussing your concerns about the use of real names on our forums. As a result of those discussions, we've decided at this time that real names will not be required for posting on official Blizzard forums.

It's important to note that we still remain committed to improving our forums. Our efforts are driven 100% by the desire to find ways to make our community areas more welcoming for players and encourage more constructive conversations about our games. We will still move forward with new forum features such as the ability to rate posts up or down, post highlighting based on rating, improved search functionality, and more. However, when we launch the new StarCraft II forums that include these new features, you will be posting by your StarCraft II Battle.net character name + character code, not your real name. The upgraded World of Warcraft forums with these new features will launch close to the release of Cataclysm, and also will not require your real name.

I want to make sure it's clear that our plans for the forums are completely separate from our plans for the optional in-game Real ID system now live with World of Warcraft and launching soon with StarCraft II. We believe that the powerful communications functionality enabled by Real ID, such as cross-game and cross-realm chat, make Battle.net a great place for players to stay connected to real-life friends and family while playing Blizzard games. And of course, you'll still be able to keep your relationships at the anonymous, character level if you so choose when you communicate with other players in game. Over time, we will continue to evolve Real ID on Battle.net to add new and exciting functionality within our games for players who decide to use the feature.

In closing, I want to point out that our connection with our community has always been and will always be extremely important to us. We strongly believe that Every Voice Matters, ( http://us.blizzard.com/en-us/company/about/mission.html ) and we feel fortunate to have a community that cares so passionately about our games. We will always appreciate the feedback and support of our players, which has been a key to Blizzard's success from the beginning.

Mike Morhaime
CEO & Cofounder
Blizzard Entertainment


Just as they deserved the brickbat when they were proposing to do something stupid, they deserve praise for recognizing they'd mis-stepped (and in a rare move for most companies, recognizing it before they actually implemented it.

Good job, Blizzard. Very good job.
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Blizzard Entertainment, makers of World of Warcraft and other games, unveils controversial new forum policies

I'm a person who has long argued that there is no privacy on the Internet,there never was any privacy on the Internet, and that pretending otherwise is a comfortable delusion people craft for themselves in order to not freak out thinking about how much of their personal information is floating around in the ether.

Having said that...Blizzard is seriously out of bounds on this one. The concern isn't just the forums. If it was, we'd all just shrug and go on with our lives; I can't remember the last time I read the official forums, much less posted to them. And as you can see, I post to Usenet with my real name and e-mail address, and have done so for 20 years, so I'm not overly concerned with people finding me .

But then, I've never had a stalker. I've never been sexually assaulted. I've never been the victim of identity theft. I've never been harassed because I'm female, or gay, or transgendered. But I know people who fall into every single one of those categories, some of them very close to me. Their concerns about protecting their identity from random strangers are real, substantial, and very much valid.

Right now, it's just the forums, but what happens when they decide to reveal your real name to people using the Armoury? Or an in-game query against your character? As much as I generally regard slippery-slope arguments as a fallacy, it does seem very clear that Blizzard has a cavalier attitude towards its users' identities, and that is troubling.

It's one thing to soapbox about the illusion of privacy on the Internet, and another thing to simply blatantly ignore the importance of the illusion and flagrantly expose your users' information. There may be only the thinnest line between you and the world, but that thin line matters; it's part of the social contract that allows the Internet to function.

Bad move, Blizzard. Very, very bad move.

More reading on this that I liked:
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This is really just a random squee post. I had such a good night last night and I wanted to share.

First up was our Tuesday night raid, on which I am the Raid Leader. We got our group together neatly by first pull time, with only a couple of people to cut. (Tuesday is usually the hardest night to form, because we'll get 32-35 people showing up. On Thursday and Sunday, when we're wiping on stuff, suddenly people don't turn out. Funny that. I keep lists.) We took a while to get started because we had to sort out some folks for a new strategy we were trying on Flame Leviathan, but once we got rolling it was easy city. We downed FL+2 in one with only a couple of deaths, so it was a marked improvement over the previous week. We then proceeded to knock off XT-002, which finally dropped Twisted Visage for our guild leader, Kologarn and Iron Council, each of which dropped wishlist items for folks....including me! I got the Iron-bound Mantle to replace my last piece of T7.5, and next week I'll have the badges to get the helm and complete my 4pc bonus on T8.5.

As we were heading into IC, we got the news that the Alliance had managed to capture Lake Wintergrasp, so we downed the big trio and proceeded portal out to Dalaran to get our weekly guild clear of VoA done. The other hunter in the raid grabbed his T8.5 gloves as a result.

Though it was only 11:30, there really wasn't time to do anything else, so we called it there. I went and got my new shoulders properly enchanted by the Son of Hodir, and checked to see what my guildies were up to. Seeing several folks in Slave Pens, I volunteered my daily Ahune summon to anyone who wanted it, and ended up duoing it with our chief ret paladin for just my one attempt (He'd just wrapped up about 4-5 attempts with someone else, who was going to bed.) We knocked him down easily and....the pet dropped, I won the roll, and I now has a Scorchling! *happy dance*

I've promised the pally I'll keep going back with him in the hopes it will drop for him too. But what a great night of WoW!
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When writing about topical things, there is always a danger of your work being "overtaken by events", which is to say made obsolete by the world changing over the course of time. I wrote this months and months ago, when it was more topical than nostalgic.

But, as we take our first exploratory steps into Naxxramas, high above the snowy valleys of Northrend, let's remember those heady days when the place to be was Deadwind Pass.

Nothing but ghosts, nothing that's real... )
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Among the many things that really sucked about [livejournal.com profile] bedlamhouse moving to Indiana was no longer being able to game with him every week. The D&D campaign soldiered on without him, but I really missed his presence at the table. I'm pretty sure he missed us too, because when the D&D group decided to shift from weekly to irregular status, he suggested that perhaps we could set up an MMO night so he could get in on some gaming fun.

The adventures so far... )
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I had a relatively relaxing weekend, which is good because that was just the sort of weekend I wanted.

Friday night, [livejournal.com profile] catalana and I met up for our usual night of WoW questing. We spent a good deal of time killing giants and water elementals in Feralas -- the giants were dutifully dropping stuff for us, and the water elementals not so much, so we dropped that quest and went to collect Yeti hides instead. On the way to the yeti cave, [livejournal.com profile] catalana spotted a sprite darter and said "Those are so pretty! I wish you could get a non-combat pet version of one of those!" I whispered one of my friends who is a rabid non-combat pet collector and asked if there was one. It turns out, there is! It just involves doing a very long quest chain that starts with an NPC hidden in a spot that one would be fairly unlikely to notice. We dropped our plans for mega XP and decided to chase this chain down instead. It mostly involved razing a village of Tauren and freeing a bunch of the little dragons, then flying all the way to Darnassus to turn in the quest, then flying all the way back to Feralas to pick up the second part of the chain, then down to Shimmering Flats, and then The Hinterlands. Those of you familiar with the geography of Azeroth will note that we earned our frequent flyer miles on this one! It was late when we finally wrapped up for the night, but we were both the proud new parents of tiny little faerie dragons!

I split most of Saturday between WoW and Warhammer Online. WH Online is a new MMO that just came out, and a large number of my guildies are playing it, so I figured I'd at least see what the fuss was about. I'm really horribly underwhelmed by it, unfortunately. I'll keep dabbling with it, but as soon as Wrath of the Lich King comes out, I expect it to start gathering dust. I'll go on more about my impressions of the game in another post.

Currently exciting in WoW land is Brewfest! World of Warcraft has a number of little holiday festival events through the year, and Brewfest is essentially the dwarven (and Orcish) Okotberfest. There's a fair, and kegs of beer, and ram races, and a cool boss mob to go and kill for shiny trinkets. We spent a good deal of time on Saturday and Sunday repeatedly running the special boss -- hes' not hard to kill, but you can only run the event once per person, so even swapping people in and out of the party, there's a limit to how many times a day you can get his loot. But it's fun to do stuff as a guild again.

Sunday night, my darling [livejournal.com profile] sweetmusic_27 and her old roommate Patty dropped in on their way down to Walt Disney World! This made me quite happy as I have not seen my darling Amy since January, and there was much cuddling to be had. We went out to Famous Dave's for a Giant Helping of Protein, then came home and watched a Jeff Dunham DVD. A good time having been had by all, we went to bed at a reasonable hour, as [livejournal.com profile] kitanzi and I had to be at work and Patty and Amy had a long drive to Orlando ahead of them. But it was fantastic to get to meet Patty, and of course I'm always happy to see Amy. (We'll get to see them both again in a week or so, when they're on their way back north. We made sure they'd have to stop...we loaned them graphic novels! *grin*)
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Overall, the weekend was pretty relaxing. Didn't do much to speak of, honestly. Friday night was my weekly WoW date with [livejournal.com profile] catalana. We're slowly creeping our way up...level 46 now, and aside from instances, which we've been getting regularly run through by 70 friends, we've run into almost nothing we could not handle together. I seriously doubt we'll hit 70 by the time the expansion comes out in 2 months, but that's ok. We're not really in a hurry.

Sunday was a bit of a down day, emotionally. It started out well -- we went to the pool at the gym for a while, soaked in the hot tub, and came home for a nice brunch. It's been a while since the last time we were at the gym, so I was pleased to discover that I'd lost 15 pounds since the last time I weighed in. I'd suspected this was the case, as my pants size has shrunk, but it was nice to see the scale reflect that as well.

The afternoon came with a case of the blahs. There were a variety of reasons for this, some of which I had a finger on, and some of which I didn't. Of the things I had a finger on, at least one was completely irrational and the other was something I had no real ability to do anything about, so I was fairly unhappy about the state of my head. This wasn't improved when I got a call from my mother around 6:30pm, to tell me that my Aunt Barbara (her oldest sister) had passed away suddenly that morning of a heart attack. She was 65, the same age as my grandmother was when she passed away under very similar circumstances. Mom pointed out that our family doesn't tend to go for the long lingering illnesses, preferring to stay healthy to the end and going suddenly, and I'm sure that on the whole, I'd prefer that myself, but its certainly a shock to those left behind. This whole week has been filled with news of people close to me dealing with unexpected death, and I really wish the universe would just cut it out.

I made tacos for dinner and we watched the first episode of Alton Brown's new show Feasting On Waves, which was much fun. I then logged into WoW for a while, and ended up pulling a guildmate and 2 other 50ish characters through about half of Blackrock Depths. This made for a nice distraction, and I have to admit it was fun to listen to the lowbie hunter ooh and ah as I dispatched the Dark Iron Dwarves and their minions. My guildmate has run me through more instances than I can count, so I was glad to return the favour to her.

Around midnight, I decided it was getting late, but took some time to give [livejournal.com profile] sweetmusic_27 a call. By the time we were done talking, it was late, but I was in a better frame of mind. But I'd really like another Sunday to replace this one...I think it was defective.

QotD

Sep. 3rd, 2008 04:32 pm
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Oddest response a girl has ever given me to an overture of affection, ever:

"Well, if you were more like a scorpid..."

ETA: Perhaps its just that kind of day. Someone I'm actually dating just said to me: "If I were an alien wasp, I would totally use your flesh to nurture my young." Which is really very sweet, when you think about it.
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Since last week was my birthday, I decided to treat myself to a small vacation, and took Wednesday through Friday off to enjoy some leisure time. A mental health holiday, as it were. It I had quite a good time doing it, too.

Wednesday - June 25 )

This actually got longer than I intended, so I'll wrap it up here and do the rest of the weekend in another post. :)

Footnotes )
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New directions for The Grim Covenant )
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It's been a pretty social week out this way, which has been a lot of fun, on the whole.

World of Warcraft: Frustrating Raids )

Movie Night Out: Indiana Jones )

Move Night In: Juno )

Quiet Night At Home )

Weekend.

May. 8th, 2008 01:41 pm
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Weekend started out lousy, got better, then got much worse.

Friday night, WoW date with [livejournal.com profile] catalana was scuttled by Internet troubles. Spent some time with Comcast on the phone, then they were going to send out a technician on Sunday. Bah. Borrowed a cup of wireless from a neighbor, which was good enough to surf, but not to do anything that required long sustained connections like WoW or ssh.

Saturday, went to the library book sale, and scored a lot of fun books (including a 1974 "Encyclopedia of Love and Sex" that should be worth at least a few giggles) and an eclectic stack of CDs. From there, got a call from Comcast that they'd found and fixed the Internet problem (which was a neighborhood outage and not specific to my apartment. Went to a housewarming party a friend was having, where we gathered quite a few more books from a recent warehouse clearing.

During the party, got a call from a co-worker that we had a server down and she was going to investigate it. Called various up-line people to inform them, but figured she had it under control. She checked it at various times...but was working close with the vendor support staff to try and recover.

Came home and had my online date that had been canceled the previous night. Much fun had. Then...

Another call from co-worker. Things still going badly, needing me to come pick up for her, as she's been on this for over fourteen hours and is getting cross-eyed. I ended up working 32 of the next 48 hours.

So the bookends of the weekend weren't very good, but the middle was lovely.
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Well, the poll I posted tells me that enough people are interested in me nattering about WoW and most people don't care as long as I cut tag them, so I'm going to forgo a special filter. I hate making locked posts anyway, unless it's really something I want to keep to a restricted audience.

So, starting out, we'll talk about what my low-level alt is doing....

See you, me and Erica down in Dun Morogh... )

WoW Factor

Apr. 25th, 2008 12:11 pm
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Given that I want to post more often (just to be in the habit) and I spend a fair emount of my time these days playing World of Warcraft, I'm considering adding posts about things happening to and around me in-game to my blogging schedule. I'd never bothered before because I didn't think anyone would really care, but I have enough people on my friends list who play, now someone who plays, or just find things i write interesting that it might be worth doing. So, a poll:

[Poll #1176971]
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Here's another song that's likely to make sense only to my friends who play World of Warcraft. It's also useful to know the song "The Toronto Song" by Three Dead Trolls in a Baggie. To ease confusion on either of these points, I've provided a link to the source tune (thanks, YouTube!) and links to all the things referenced from WoW, courtesy of WoWWiki.

The Ironforge Song
by Rob Wynne
TTTO: "The Toronto Song" by Three Dead Trolls In A Baggie


I hate the Great Forge and the Mystic Ward too
The Hall of Explorers and the Tinker Town crew
The roof is too high, the air is too dark
Its covered with lava and there isn't a park
The men are all drunk and the girls won't wench
and the children are loopy cause they fell in a trench
The water is frozen and the king has no friends
And they wear lift boots and they think they're Stormwind
In Ironforge, Dun Morogh

(Spoken)
"You know, actually I pretty much hate all of Dun Morogh!"
"Oh ya, me too!"

I hate Brewnall Village and Anvilmar
Amberstill, Coldridge, and Gol'Bolar
Frostmane sucks and the North Gate sucks
and Kharanos sucks and Gnomeregan sucks

I took a trip to Ironforge to visit Mistina Steelshield
She beat me up and she stole my cloth and she left me in a field
I went to Alterac Valley and was hit in the head by an Orc
(spoken)
I don't even know how they did it. I mean, I was playing Guitar Hero at the time....

Dun Morogh sucks!

(spoken)
"Yup. Yknow, actually you know now I really think about it, I think I pretty much hate every gosh darn province and territory in the Alliance!"
"Well, except for Westfall"
"Ya, ya I love Westfall"
"It's very nice, lots of cows and trees and rocks and dirt"

But

I hate Darnassus cause they look so weird
And Azuremyst Island is too small
Dustwallow Marsh is dumb 'cause its the name of a swamp
Gadgetzan doesn't have a good mall
Hillsbrad is a warzone and it makes me mad
Dun Morogh sucks! Dun Morogh Sucks!

(spoken)
"Stranglethorn Vale has a population density of 4.9 people per quest objective -- isn't that stupid??"

The Plaguelands are boring and the people are dead
And as for the Redridge Mountains -- they're too red!

(Spoken)
"And the only good thing about the area of Elwynn Forest is that it's right next to us"

'Cause Westfall.....doesn't suck
But Moonbrook does.
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Several months ago, I finally gave in to the lure of the worlds most popular online RPG and started playing World of Warcraft. (You can find me on The Venture Co server as Pryderi.) For months, I worked my way up to level 70, meeting lots of cool people along the way, and finally, about three weeks ago, I finally reached that exalted summit. One of the interesting things about WoW is that, unlike a lot of games where you hit the level cap and wonder "OK, now what?", there is a whole complex set of challenges designed especially for the top level characters. So rather than being the end of the journey, max level is a new beginning.

Of course, it's possible for people to get all the way to max level without ever really learning to play your character effectively, which becomes painfully obvious to the people you end up in groups with during endgame content. I try very hard not to be one of those players, but I got the idea to write a song about the types of players everyone dreads teaming up with. This may not make sense if you don't play the game, but hopefully the meta-joke at least works outside of context.

I apologize in advance for inflicting yet another parody of this tune on the world, but it fit too perfectly.

Max Level Newbie
by Rob Wynne
TTTO: "I Am The Very Model of A Modern Major General" by Gilbert and Sullivan

I am the very model of a Warcraft Newbie 70
I've never been on raids, but I insist that I would like to be
I know the kings of Azeroth, but what they drop's a mystery
From Netherstorm to Shadowmoon, no one has ever heard of me
I'm very uninformed about the way to play my character
And if your toon is female, I will prob'ly grin and hit on her
On every pull at the worst time, I will hit tab and free the sheep
And halfway through the boss fight, i'll be in a corner fast asleep

I AFK in battlegrounds, thats how I got my purple gear
The stats don't match my build, but I still like the way that I appear
In short, you see I have no clue and everyone I know agrees
I am the very model of a Warcraft Newbie 70

I've been to Ironforge, and yet I do not know the tram exists
I pester folks on general to take me out to Tanaris
Although I've never played your class, if we team up it won't be long
Before I tell you all the things I think that you are doing wrong
Invite me to your group and i'll insist that you should summon me
Then when you do I'll ask for food and other things that I might need
Before the pull has been discussed I rush right in to start the fray
But when the fight gets out of hand I am the first to run away

I ninja loot by rolling need on every drop that's green or blue
And if you haven't kicked me yet, I'll do it on the epics too
And so, you see why everyone in Shattrath City laughs at me
I am the very model of a Warcraft Newbie 70

My warriors try tanking with no shield and a two handed sword
My priests will heal you only right up to the point that they get bored
My rouges pickpocket every mob and cause the pull to go awry
My shamans never use their totems even when you ask them why
My warlocks never look to see what's nearby when they cast a fear
My druids always go to dungeons wearing the same set of gear
My paladins cast random seals and never bring a judgment down
My hunters pets chase random mobs and during fights just run around

I run from PVP but I will gank you when your back is turned
Although I post in forums, I don't read them so Ive never learned
That while I claim that I'm the greatest player you will ever see
I am the very model of a Warcraft Newbie 70
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Despite being a bit loopy from painkillers due to my recent fall, I managed to have a pretty fun weekend.

Saturday morning, [livejournal.com profile] kitanzi went out to do the weekly grocery shopping, and brought home a copy of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. This was pretty much how I picked up my copy of Half Blood Prince, too: avoid the midnight madness and grab a copy in passing at a non-book store. Unfortunately, I didn't get as much reading on it as I'd have liked, because the first time I tried to sit down with it I was having trouble concentrating. I'm currently about a third of the way through it, and actively avoiding spoiler discussions until I finish, hopefully tonight or tomorrow.

Early Saturday morning, our new washing machine and dryer arrived! I have to give major props to Best Buy, who made the entire transaction, from purchase to delivery to installation, about as painless as one could want. The new machine sure extremely spiffy, and have lots of features and functions that we're not yet exactly sure what they're really for, but I'm sure we'll have fun figuring them out. The first test for the washer was the pair of jeans that I got muddied up when I fell down the hill. They came out as good as new. We're officially impressed.

Saturday night, we went to [livejournal.com profile] joyeuse13 and [livejournal.com profile] abovenyquist's housefilk near Brookhaven. We hadn't seen them in far too long, so it was doubly nice that it was at their house. We also had some special guests from far away, with [livejournal.com profile] janeg and [livejournal.com profile] shaddyr both visiting from various parts of Canada, and our own [livejournal.com profile] bedlamhouse making a rare local appearance before shaking the Georgia clay from his boots en route to the Midwest. And of course, many of the usual suspects were there, including [livejournal.com profile] sffilk, [livejournal.com profile] filkferengi, [livejournal.com profile] mrpsyclops and his daughter, J., and [livejournal.com profile] spambrian. I was limited by not having my filkbooks with me (they're in a box somewhere), and I'm afraid I wasn't in very good form, but I did have a good time. I remember playing Richard Shindell's "The Next Best Western" and, during a run of Canadian folk/filk, Sam Baardman's "Down To The River", which I at least had memorized and thus didn't need to fumble for words to play. Oh, and I did my own "Sauron" during a small run of Tolkien filk, which was fun. We ended up leaving slightly early, around 11pm, because [livejournal.com profile] kitanzi was driving and wanted to get home before she was too tired to drive safely.

Sunday, we went over to the old apartment to get most of the last odds and ends out of the place. [livejournal.com profile] kitanzi packed stuff in the car while I set about the place with a can of Spackle, patching the holes in the drywall from where we'd mounted shelves. We'll be going back over this afternoon after work so I can sand them down, and we can haul the last of the trash down to the tip. The house cleaners will come in on Wednesday to give it the last polish, and then we'll turn the keys in and that will close the book on my time at The Wellington.

We spent most of the rest of the weekend at home. Watched the last of the season 3 Doctor Who Confidentials, chatted to folks on the Internet, and I played a fair amount of World of Warcraft, which was about as much attention span as I had for any one task, anyway. I just hit level 58 with my hunter, and made me first proper trip into the Outlands.

How was your weekend?

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