Archive for February 25th, 2008

Real pals in virtual worlds

I’m sure I’ve said it here before, but one thing that is definitely true about doctoral programs is that they make it nearly impossible to keep up with your non-academically preoccupied friends.  New friendships form, forged in the fires of literature reviews and difficult classes, and as a result you see more of these coursework-comrades than you see of of the people who are near and dear to you.  It’s just the way it is.  And at least it’s temporary.

In the time since I’ve gone back to school, several of my friends have moved away, others have just moved on. 

But your friends never really leave you, and often you run into each other in unlikely virtual places.  With the new Web 2.0 application such as Facebook, My Space, LinkedIn, and yes, blogging, it’s more likely than ever that  you run into your friends, no matter how distant, in the closesness of the ether.

Or maybe hanging around the Elwynn Forest, somewhere on the road between Goldshire and Westfall!

My good friend Wendy and her family moved last year to the Frozen North, also known as Buffalo, and while I’ve managed to keep up with Wendy through her blog and through other shared interests, I haven’t spoken to her husband in all that time.  Which is a real shame, because he is such a great guy.  Really, he’s one of that rare breed we refer to as “the good ones”.

Wendy had shared with him and their son James about my WoW assignment.  Apparently, they have been playing on another server for quite some time.  But, hearing about my assignment, they both created characters on the server my class is using and worked to level-up to a point where they could assist me in my Westfall quests.  [Yes, dayzofrain, I’m at Sentinal Hill…I think I will be for awhile…]

Did you get that?  Two real-world pals, a continent away, created characters in the virtual realm of Azeroth, to help me complete my real-world class assignment. 

I think it goes to prove a few things: first, that real people really are behind those fantastic avatars; second, that friends come to your aid in all kinds of unforseen circumstances; and third, that all the magic in the world is not confined to fictional realms of druids, mages, and paladins, but often bleeds over into our own world and our more earthly relationships.

Oh, and fourth: if you are going to attack the Defias Brotherhood at the Jangolode Mine, it helps to have both a powerful tank and a healer on your team.  Thanks guys!

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