Whine a Little Whine For Me

So, I don’t generally whine. Mostly because I don’t feel that it often does anything. Other than annoy people, I guess. Sometimes, however, I think that a good whine-fest can be helpful. Wholesome. Cathartic. Certainly for the whiner – if not for the whine-ee. And since my concept of this blog has often been like a bottle cast into the brine (or maybe a magic diary that talks back every once in a while) I feel very comfortable pulling up a chair and unloading a whole great torrent of whine onto the ever-sympathetic ears of the internets. (Yes, I’d love some cheese with my whine. Lately I’m really into chevre with figs – if anyone’s asking.)

But, some preamble before the whining commences. I’ve often felt a little inadequate when compared to my co-guild leader, Adi. She’s more patient, much calmer, nicer, friendlier, harder working, more dedicated to the guild and (from my observations) much better liked than I am. I’m mostly (mostly) okay with that. I know how I come across to people and I know I’m abrasive and bitchy and demanding and cold and I’m mostly okay with that. Most of the time I’m just fine with who I am and how I contribute to the guild.

But, every now and then …

I wish I could be more like Adi. I wish I was calmer. Nicer. I certainly wish I was better liked some days. I wish that I didn’t feel so inadequate compared to her. I wish I had the motivation to work as hard for the guild as she does. I wish I had the patience that she shows towards people. (God, I wish I had that kind of patience). There are days that I wish I could be the carrot like her, instead of the stick.

I keep a little Imaginary Adi in the back of my head. (Kind of like this. Only not really.) And not just in game, either. I’ve found that the advice my Imaginary Adi gives me is pretty damn applicable to my work and family lives as well. When I feel the urge to reach out and slap someone till their eyeballs switch places, I (usually!) stop and ask my Imaginary Adi what she would do instead. One of her best pieces of advice has been to “kill people with kindness” and I’ve found more than my share of situations to apply that advice to.

And now, the whine.

I just finished leveling my dorfadin. I’ve specced her tank, which means that I’m able to fill three out of four raid roles now! (Heals? Check! Ranged dps? Check! Meat shield? Check! Melee dps? Errr … I’ll get back to you.) I was really thrilled to be working on her, and the excitement of leveling and gearing a new 80 has been a large part of what has drawn me back into Warcraft wholeheartedly. I spent a load of money on craftable gear and maxed out her Engineering to get myself a Jeeves. I even cajoled a few of my guildies into letting me tank easy heroics like UK and VH and – on the whole – those runs weren’t unmitigated disasters. Tanking is a huge panic-y, button mash-tastic flail for me right now, but I do sort of enjoy it. I was really looking forward to tanking more.

I was.

I had my alt guilded so that I could keep one eye and one ear on what was going on in the guild. I could respond to questions, keep a weather eye on the drift of gchat and switch to my main if anyone needed me for anything. I like to have alts that are hidden if I need some space, but if I’m going to be dedicating a large part of my time to one alt, then I usually guild it so I’m not gone too much. Unbeknownst to me, my co-guild leader was leveling an alt as well. She’s been suffering much the same burnout, so she kept her alt unguilded so that she could get some respite from guild demands and just enjoy the game. I have absolutely no quibble with that. What does make me want to have a pouty fit (or at least write down a pouty fit) is that she leveled a paladin. And specced it prot. And she dinged 80 the same day I did.

*pout*

I’m seriously bummed about this, you guys. I’m really feeling like my thunder was not only stolen but that I’m being taunted by the thunder-nappers. I know she didn’t do it on purpose, but I kind of feel blindsided by the fact that she knew what I was doing (class, spec) and I had no idea what she was doing. And then adding insult to injury is that I feel like because the guild likes her so much better, that she is the one who is going to receive the bulk of the indulgence that the guild has for new alts. She’s going to be the one everyone will take to heroics and help her gear. She’s going to get the alt Naxx runs and she’s going to get all the patience and tolerance and good will of the guild. And I feel like there will be nothing left for me.

I was so, so enthused to level this little dwarf and so, so excited to try my hand at tanking. And now I feel like the wind has been taken out of my sails. I’m really dejected about the whole thing. I haven’t logged on my little dwarf since. What the hell is the point?

I know she didn’t do it on purpose to be malicious. I know that it’s just some alts (both of us have three other toons we play regularily). I know that it doesn’t mean squat in the grand scheme of things – in game or in my life all told. But I am really quite sad about it. I feel like this is just another way that I will come second to Adi, and I know that there isn’t really a lot that I can do about it. I can keep on accepting that Adi and I are different people, with different strengths and weaknesses, and I will. I can work on some other alt and maybe that will take my mind off things. I don’t want to mention it to her, because I don’t want to make her feel bad and I can’t think of any way to tell her that wouldn’t make me sound like a petulant child. And I definitely don’t want her to give up her alt. But I don’t really know what to do.

*sighs and kicks at the dirt with her toe*

14 Comments

  1. Jov said,

    September 10, 2009 at 9:05 am

    Welcome to my world.

    I’m not nearly so good at listening to my inner-Seri… And I don’t have any specific “you copied my class/spec” to deal with… But I’m definitely the bitchy stick in our relationship.

  2. Ambrosyne said,

    September 10, 2009 at 10:59 am

    When I got fed up with healadinining, I took my pally prot.

    And everyone else leveled a tanking alt at the same. Damned. Time.

    But you know what? I was still able to get runs, and gear. Other tanks were saved, or busy, or not interested-and there I was! It can be dissapointing-especially since they know I have a healer main, and will often ask me to switch if we’re too tankiful-but I still get plenty of tanking opportunitys with everyone wanting to run heroics into the ground.

    Cheer up!

    And go tank!

    • Oriniwen said,

      September 10, 2009 at 11:09 am

      Well, I signed up for an alt Naxx25 run tonight – as did my co-leader. Hopefully there will be enough tanky goodness (targets AND loots) to go around. I’m mostly worried about her being a better tank than me. I figure people will have a lower tolerance for *my* fail. /sigh.

  3. Larísa said,

    September 10, 2009 at 11:06 am

    Oh, I recognize myself so much. I’ve never been that blond girl with the beutiful laughter that everyones wants to become friends with. Watching the popular ones from the side can make me into a 10 year old girl feeling lonely hidden behind a bush at the schoolyard, watching everyone else playing…

    I just want to send you a hug, trying to comfort you and say that maybe it won’t be quite as bad as you’re imagining right now. I’m a specialist for catastrophy thinking, taken out all the sorrows in advance. Maybe you are too?

    • Oriniwen said,

      September 10, 2009 at 11:08 am

      Yes, I think I am, too. If I don’t hear from my BF at least once through the day I start to seriously consider that there has been some sort of horrific gas line explosion at his site and half the city has been wiped out. I figure – prepare for the very worst and you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

      Doesn’t do very good things for my stress level, though :/

  4. Copernicus said,

    September 10, 2009 at 12:08 pm

    Yeah, I think you are over stressing about it. I’m sending you a virtual hug to go along with Larisa’s.

    Gear shouldn’t be an issue, because tanks always get first choice on the defense plate. I don’t know how your gear system works, but our tanks consistently fall over each other to pass to each other. Sometimes to the point of comedy.

    For the issue of being liked as much as Adi… there are certainly people in my guild that I like more than others. Something about them just resonates with me and I enjoy being in a group with them. However, that doesn’t mean that I hate being in groups with other people. I still like them, they just don’t resonate. Kinda like the difference between a friend and a best friend.

  5. glithander said,

    September 10, 2009 at 4:04 pm

    I wouldn’t ever say that you come in second to Adi. I (and many folks) value both of y’all… and two new Pally tanks means YAY! HEROICS!!! Right now we’ve got Drak, and Unde and Rius… and that’s it – so by about 8:00p all the tanks are done for the day now. With you and Adi and Shieke, we’ll have three more tanks ready to go!

    Still, I remember how upset I got when Zedd was bouncing around all over the place leveling his priest. I didn’t want him to heal, I figured that everyone would get him runs and that I’d end up DPS’ing on Ame again. Of course, that didn’t happen… but the fear and frustration was still there for a bit.

    Word! Good luck in Naxx!

  6. September 11, 2009 at 4:14 am

    [...] it can also lead to the situation Oriniwen finds herself in, where she’s just happily levelled a new alt to find … that her co-GM picked exactly [...]

  7. arbitrary said,

    September 11, 2009 at 4:22 am

    *hugs*

  8. Gevlon said,

    September 11, 2009 at 5:36 am

    “Melee dps? Errr … I’ll get back to you.”
    Why not now? Paladins have a ret tree you know!

    • Oriniwen said,

      September 11, 2009 at 7:43 am

      Oh ret. From my understanding, it’s easy to be very very bad at ret dps. I’ve seen some really spectacular players, but I’ve seen more truly terrible ret dps. It’s not something I think I want to put the work into atm, I’d rather level my druid and do kitty dps.

      Not really out of any rational reason, just my personal preference :)

  9. Akiosama said,

    September 11, 2009 at 12:57 pm

    Cheer up, Oriniwen, it’s probably not as bad as it may seem right now.

    When I decided to become a tank in my guild, we did not have anyone at level 80 who was working on being a tank. I’d done some tanking while levelling, dual-specced a DPS and Tanking spec, but most of my tanking was done in lower instances, just to get a feel for the role.

    While I was doing this, our GM decided, to have one of our Warriors ALSO go Prot and learn to tank. (Actually, she’d asked TWO of our Warriors to try, and one gave up really quickly, as while his character sported Plate armor, his ego only wore Cloth, it seemed.) The issue for me was, my DPS was decent, but that warrior did not have any DPS spec or gear, so he was relegated to ‘guild tank’.

    It was an odd thing. I’d done a lot of reading on tanking as a Death Knight, and as a Warrior and a Druid, for that matter (oddly enough Paladin was not on my list of reading), since I wanted to see what was expected of me, and what other classes could offer.

    And so, when we actually started running stuff, I’d get frustrated watching our tank doing stuff that I thought was elementarily incorrect. (Who Spell Reflects and Shield Walls at the BEGINNING of every fight, before even pulling? And yet…) I’d get frustrated because as DPS I was pulling stuff back to him when mobs wandered away, never getting it pulled off me, and dying for my charity… And so on, and so forth.

    Yet, from a guild point of view, we were supposed to be working on helping him get geared for tanking. Frustrating to say the least, especially because he would get upset at criticism about his tanking from others… Yet, he couldn’t NOT tank, since he didn’t have DPS-anything to fall back on.

    So, I feel your pain, Oriniwen. I’ve been there, too.

    The good thing is – the better you perform at the job, the more likely people’s opinions will shift. Just do the best job YOU can and don’t worry about the competition as much. People will come around.

    Like in my case – the current conclusion to the tanking ‘competition’ in our guild? We ran Naxx10 with our guild, plus a couple people from the guild who runs our 25-man raids, one of which was our normal Raid Leader. Our “Guild Tank” and I both tanked that day. The result? Our Raid Leader25 pointed at me to the Guild Master in the post-raid recap and said, “He should be your main tank.” Understanding of the tanking role, activity levels, and situational awareness were all part of that assessment.

    So, moral of the story? Do your task well, and people will come around. Be the best tank YOU can be, and you will eventually be rewarded. Don’t get discouraged – it’s not worth it, especially if you really want to do this.

    My best wishes to a new tank. It’s much more exciting than DPS.

    And guess what? You finally become priority heal target, too. =D

    My 2 yen and good luck to Oriniwen,

    Akiosama

    • Oriniwen said,

      September 11, 2009 at 1:04 pm

      A lot to digest there :) (And I’m glad to see I’m not the only one who leaves Wall of Text comments.)

      I think my biggest fear is that “the best I can be” (tank, GM, human being) is still not going to be good *enough*.

      But! I am enjoying tanking quite a bit and we did some runs last night that were really really fun – everyone in good spirits and everyone being very supportive. So maybe Larisa is right – I’m just one of those people who see the catastrophy lurking in everyday ocurrances.

      • Akiosama said,

        September 11, 2009 at 1:23 pm

        Wow, that was fast! (And like I always tell Larisa, I’m glad for people who don’t mind Walls of Text, ’cause I’ve got all the talents that boost that ability.)

        I think it’s human nature to have a fear that one might not be ‘good enough’. I think, though, also, that you should also be comfortable knowing that as long as you’re putting forth effort and continually improving, you WILL be good enough. I’m one who thinks the effort and character of the player also is a big factor – and the desire to become better and to not just settle and expect everyone to prop you up will pay off in the end. Further, these are your guildies. Guildies should be pretty supportive, in my opinion. As much as I used to complain about that warrior, I did it behind closed doors… And publicly I tried to help assist and advise what I could.

        So, don’t give up. Have fun. Don’t stress about it. You KNOW you can play this game. You KNOW you can manage a Guild. This is just one more facet of all that. Work WITH, not in competition with, the other Tankadin, and I think in the end you’ll both benefit.

        And remember, DPS is less tense and thought consuming than Tanking, in my opinion. You or the other Paladin will want days off too, to just DPS and play without the whole raid on your back. You WILL get your chance to shine too.

        Best of luck, and please let us all know how it’s going.

        My 2 yen,

        Akiosama


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