Being yourself doesn't mean unique

| Thursday, March 25, 2010
People spend a lot of time pretending to express themselves or be themselves or something involving themselves and image projection. WoW is no exception. People do all manner of grinds to get titles and mounts and pets. They will never win.

They aren't actually trying to express themselves. They say they are, but in reality they are trying to appear unique. The snowflake myth has convinced people that to be themselves they must be radically different. Of course they're not. Any given person is going to be very similar to those around them. Maybe if we lived in small towns of 100 people we could be significantly different than those around us. But we don't.

This isn't very good for anyone. It wastes a lot of time and money for the people trying to express themselves. It makes a lot of failure. It skews the economy towards stupid shit that no person in their right mind would buy. But they're not in their right minds, they're in their "I must be different because that's who I am" minds.

What I'm trying to get at is, you can be yourself without being completely different from everyone else. A few times (okay more than a few times) in high school I would wear the same shirt as a friend of mine. Similar pants. We both had fairly short hair. How terrible! We were not expressing ourselves at all, right? We were. But since we weren't obsessed with self-expression and being snowflakes, we were able to accept that maybe we're not radically different people. Different, but not so much that it's worth taking extra time and money to emphasize it. It's not as if we wore the same shoes or looked the same.

In WoW terms, I seek self-expression. For a while this meant an obsession with the Scourge. Killing it to be exact. I mean killing it more so than it is. You know, like making it well-done instead of medium rare. So I ran around with an Argent Dawn title of some sort. But I like lore, so I was working towards Loremaster. Which I got. I alternated those as my mood suited until I received the Exalted. Now I run that almost exclusively. Back in late BC I ran with of the Shattered Sun for a while, to express my willingness and ability to waste gold on stupid crap.

These aren't unique. I've run into other loremasters (though not many), other people with Argent Dawn titles, a few of the Shattered Sun. As for gear, I've seen Hands of Rag and Thunderfuries and some tier sets. Those don't detract from me having them. Being less unique isn't a problem as long as they still express what I intend to express, which is my weird obsession with killing undead and knowing irrelevant details about old content.

While we're on the subject of irrelevant content, grinds, and titles; I've completed all but one of the needed reputations for Insane in the Membrane. All that is left are about 900 heavy junkboxes. I've already done about 500. These come from my rogue, who has for a couple months used a customized mutilate spec which emphasizes being a mutilate spec and having a high run speed. It gets both run speed boosts; 15% normal and 15% in stealth, giving a stealthed speed of almost normal speed. That's pretty important when I'm sneaking through all of LBRS in one go, picking along the way. She also uses glyph of pick pocket (really long range) and glyph of pick lock, which makes it instant and saves a huge amount of time when I'm checking a few dozen boxes at once. If not for that I'd probably not bother to check the boxes, and I'd have missed out on some of the surprises they can hold.

It's very difficult to be unique in WoW. With millions of people playing and a limited selection of titles, races, and classes, odds are someone is going to be like you. That's not bad.

Be yourself, and don't be afraid to see an identical snowflake.

But I leave the final word to The Onion.


LifeDeathSoul said...

Best... post.... evar... :D

Stabs said...

we devote tremendous resources each year toward our conspicuous attempts at stature enhancement."

"It's pretty much an epidemic at this point," the 52-year-old professor added before pausing momentarily to adjust a small gold earring in his freshly pierced earlobe.

from The Onion, linked article.

LarĂ­sa said...

I really don't express myself much within the game. Every time I'm in IF I'm likely to run into at least one pink pigtailed gnome, not unlikely a mage.

Where I express myself is through my blogging. And I don't care tbh if I resemble much to other bloggers/players or not. As long as I'm not copying anyone else, as long as I'm honest feel confidence in my writings, knowing that it's about ME and not any sort of pretentions crap, I'm fine with it.

Oxymustard said...

Shhh, I'm making a killing selling pristine diamonds :O

Klepsacovic said...

@LifeDeathSoul: Why thank you.

@Stabs: That's no earring, it's a trinket, from hardmode Putricide!

@Larisa: Maybe non-expression is expression. I think it says something about someone that they don't feel they need to constantly run on a hamster wheel to express themselves.

@Oxymustard: Oh don't worry, your market is safe.

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