June 03, 2003

Sarah: Nerdspeak

Whenever I observe my younger brother and his friends, I am awestruck by their complete lack of normalcy. They hole up in a dim room of our house and play roleplaying games or Magic the Gathering. I love that, as nerdy as people get, they still trash talk. For example, Younger Brother says to Nerdy Friend "Dude! You have freaking 42 endurance!" in response to weakness in another area. YB, the biggest and strongest of the three boys, says "I would totally lose to you guys if I fought you..." I'm thinking "What?? You could beat these scrawny nerds in TWO SECONDS!" And he continues "...because my creature..." Later in the evening, when physically forced by Mom to go outside, Geek Boy, who has never strained himself physically IN HIS LIFE, lectures YB on how to throw a frisbee. Seriously. And no, he can't throw better than YB. When called to lunch, NF cracks a great joke to GB with "We need to cast a time freezing spell on this battle." GB laughs in pubescent boy voice as YB tells NF and GB about a spell in D&D* which stalls time for 7 seconds or something.
The thing that kills me about role playing is the Game Master, or Dungeon Master. The job of the Game Master is to arbitrarily add twists and turns in the game, by plaguing other players with unfortunate events, including physical harm and natural disaster. My brother seems to thrive on this role. I blame our family for squelching any free will of the youngest member of the family, demanding that he conforms to our every whim (exaggeration). As a result, YB grasps this one shred of control and plays God with his role playing games. Surprisingly, his friends bow down to this control. Largely due to his responsibility for their introduction to the fabulous world of Magic the Gathering**, my brother is an authority figure among his geek friends. True, this circle of friends is very small (VERY), but these lemmings are sufficient nourishment for my brother's controlling instincts. Although I fear that my brother is doomed to a life of social ineptitude and fascination with science fiction, I rest easy knowing that he is the coolest kid among his friends. The nerds have been at my house since 11 a.m. and are sleeping over at my house tonight. Wish me luck, and send me your strength.

*Dungeons and Dragons, Nerd Indicator Extraordinaire
**HUGE nerd game, which is largely responsible for sucking the life out of my brother's allowance.

Posted by sarah at June 03, 2003 11:02 PM

this is all true, but you forgot to mention how when they play role playing games, ten seconds of battle are dilated into three hours of playing time.
Player #1 (in nasally voice): so, in second three, my character is going to draw his light saber and attack the elves, which will inflict d4+6 damage, because i am wearing my rhinestone power belt, and pull out his crossbow and shoot at the dwarf, thusly inflicting d8+2 damage, and also throw the dagger he holds in his toes at the ebony dragon, and i will also drink my magic elixir which raises my hp +14, and i will also use my lockpicking ability to open the southern door.
Player #2: whatever! you only have +25 charisma!
Player #1: sorry, my crossbow will only inflict d8+1 damage, then.

....sorry, this was somehow all more amusing in my head.

Posted by: dave on June 7, 2003 05:02 PM
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