February 6th, 2006

R-E-S-P-E-C-T

Supposedly this posting got yanked from Craigslist:

“Our multi-million dollar, privately held media company is currently seeking a female video game player (knowledge of Xbox, Nintendo, and Play Station platforms preferred) to be an on-demand video game opponent several days a week at our office. One of the managing partner’s creative process is triggered through intensive video-game playing, and it is critical that he have an on-demand opponent to stimulate this process continuously. Females only, and please be confident that this will be an appropriate workplace, and you will be treated with the upmost respect. Bilingual French, Japanese, or Italian opponents are a plus. Knowledge of Sports Games preferred.”

Okay, okay, being a game-playing pro sounds like fun. But is the job nuts or is it, well, totally nuts?

They seem to be saying that this managing partner’s “creative process” is so fucking important that he needs people on staff to service - I mean serve - him just so he can work competently. Making a female gamer the adjunct to a man’s creative process seems incredibly insulting to me, no matter how often they say that she’d be treated with respect. After all, he’s the talent. She’s just staff. If he really expects this kind of treatment, he’d better be curing cancer or something - because otherwise this just seems insulting, self-indulgent and ridiculous.

On the bright side, I just bought a sparkly rhinestone bracelet that says “GAMER” on it. It should arrive in the mail any day now. Squee!

If I Were A Rich Girl, Part II

For those just joining up, I have a little World of Warcraft habit.

I do mean little, for the record. Compared to the forty-hour-a-week-ers or even to my dear boyfriend, who gets up an hour early every morning to play, I’m just a dabbler. I tend to play about ten hours a week, mostly in forty-five minutes stress-relief bursts, though once a week I’ll get together with my guild and run an instance like Scarlet Monastery. In the big picture, that’s just not much time.

This is why it’s incredibly, incredibly exciting for me that my Tauren warrior, Camellia, just broke 100 gold at level 37. I’ve got several other characters, most of whom are quite broke, so I decided that Camellia was going to earn her way to the top (or at least something like it). For one thing, warriors are a heavily gear-dependent class, so the difference between a rich warrior and a poor one can mean life or death for a party. For another, I’m sick of being slooooow, so I wanted to get my mount as soon as I could ride one. For a third, I’m pretty excited about being able to support my guild financially, since I don’t have any useful professions. And hey - 100 gold! Yeah!

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Reading List: ‘Salem’s Lot

Read: ‘Salem’s Lot, Stephen King.

I am slowly getting closer to caught up with my reviews.  I’m only four or five books from the end of my January books!  Unfortunately, February is turning out to be a very ready month so far . . . .

In any case, Salem’s Lot is King’s second book, and it seems to contain a lot of the seeds of his later works in terms of characters, plot, theme, and so on.  King seems obsessed with a certain type of introverted, graceful pre-pubescent boy (in The Dark Tower, The Talisman, here and in a number of his other works), with a semi-self-insertion author character, and with old men fighting their bodies to do one last work on Earth.  The characters are definitely types as much as they are individuals - King’s characterization will definitely get better than this book - but they’re likeable enough to carry the story, a tale of vampiric infection sweeping through a small rural town.

The scariest parts of the book aren’t the overt horror bits (though one of the main characters dies a truly gruesome - and, in my opinion, somewhat unmotivated - death).  It’s how the town itself becomes vampiric, and how the vampires create a twisted version of the town’s everyday life.  The night scenes late in the book, with the few remaining human inhabitants barricading themselves in their homes as their former friends rise to an uneasy life, are genuinely chilling.

My only real complaint with the book is that King won’t figure out how to handle female protagonists for a good few years yet.  Susan Norton is the only female protagonist (of a team of five), and the only one of them who behaves in an overtly stupid way.  What happens to her afterwards isn’t much worse than what other characters face, but I found it annoying that even the twelve-year-old boy is smarter than she is.  All I took away from her character is, “Women shouldn’t be fighting evil, because that’s a man’s job.”  On the bright side, by the time this character reappears as Susan Delgado (with her aunt playing her mother’s role), King has learned a hell of a lot of things, including that women are people too.  Go him!