It all started innocently enough. A cute boy was telling me about World of Warcraft and that I should join his realm on his server and be in his guild. Well, I didn’t understand any of the words he was saying, but I try not to question cute boys too much. They spook easily and run away. So off I went to Best Buy with a list of what I needed: World of Warcraft (the computer game, NOT the card game), a wireless mouse with a right-click button for my Mac and the Beowulf DVD. Granted, I didn’t need Beowulf to play WoW, but since I missed it in the theaters and only recently saw screen caps of hunky naked Beowulf fighting Grendel, I figured it was time to brush up on the classics.
I understand the appeal of creating a character with cool and diverse skills and cool and diverse weapons and cool and diverse species and elf ears. But I had one goal in mind: I wanted to be He-Man. Which means blonde and muscle-bound and furry underpants. So I’m a warrior. I read the strategy guide that came with the game before actually playing, which is a geek move that almost makes me too geeky for other geeks. The guide suggested choosing a character close to your personality. Somehow I don’t think I’d get too far in the game as a shy and timid gay guy whose weapon of choice would be hurling quotes from Heathers at attackers. So now I’m a big, blonde warrior who solves problems with his fists, not words. I think I have a crush on myself.
The first hour or so of playing almost lost me for good. I couldn’t figure out the keys. And people kept challenging me to duels and asking me questions. But since I didn’t know how to respond in the chat area, I would just run away. Somehow, even though I was a big, tough warrior, my real personality was still coming through! So I decided it was time to get tough and be a real man in this role-playing fantasy world. It was totally deserving of an 80s musical montage as I trained and ran and fought my way from level one to level two. Completing quests and proving my mettle, solving problems with the cold steel of my sword and the sheer power of my brute strength. As a reward for myself, I learned how to change my character’s clothes and threw away his shirt for good. Sure, my defense will go down with a naked torso, but how else will the other WoW homos find me if I’m not showing off the goods a little. When you go out dancing, do you not take off your shirt to attract attention and admirers?
In fact, World of Warcraft is pretty gay overall. In addition to the muscles and such, all the women are kick-ass warriors and sorceresses, and you just know that Lucy Lawless and Sarah Michelle Gellar would be in the WoW movie. Plus, there’s tons of drama, lots of costume changes and naked Nordic wrestling. Wait, that’s Beowulf. I have to stop multi-tasking. It’s all very much like the gay community. There are queens and trolls and lots and lots of leathermen. Then there’s me. I was especially excited when I earned a red silk sash for completing one of my quests, then profoundly disappointed to see that my tired old leather sash was more powerful than the new one. I’ll wear the red one on special occasions.
So now I’m a level 13 warrior and I’m hooked. Woohoo! Only 57 more levels to go! Did I mention it’s only been a week since I started this? It’s the biggest mistake I’ve ever made. As for the cute boy that started it all, the fantasy world can often imitate the real world. Basically, he’s out of my league. He’s too powerful. Plays on a tougher server. I’m still finding my way. If I had shown up in his world as a newbie, I would have been destroyed, like a kid off the bus from Kansas in WeHo on a Saturday night. So now I’m looking for a nice elf guy who’s around my level, so we can open a bed and breakfast or gay resort in the Elwynn forest. Clothing optional, of course.