No Updates…

For anyone who might still be lurking here, I’m not sure if I’m going to continue this blog in the future or shut it down altogether. Been a lot of stuff going on and I can’t seem to get this blog really going.

I think I know why this blog is basically obscured and I don’t have the resources or energy to fix that up, particularly as I don’t have the same feminist or dark humour used on sites such as Fat Ugly or Slutty or Not in the Kitchen Anymore.

Sore Loser

I and a friend B went up against two randoms and beat them. Then, back in the lobby, this conversation commenced:

Random 1: Hello, hello.

B: Hi.

Random 2: Hi.

Me: Hi.

Random 1: Hey Iggy, you talk?

Me: Yes…

Random 1: Cool. (pause) Wait, you sound like a girl. Are you a girl?

Me: (sigh) Yes…

Random 2: How old are you? (some unintelligible speech)

Me: Why do you ask?

Random 2: I don’t know, just wondering.

Random 1: You sound like a boy who hasn’t even hit puberty.

Random 2: (static-y, unintelligible speech, but sounds like he’s exchanging innuendo jokes with Random 1)

Me: Well, everyone tells me that.

Random 2: Do you have a chilli ring?

Me: …

(promptly exits the lobby – I don’t think they liked being beaten by a girl)

Racism Gets Justified!

Over at the Steam L4D2 forums, Trikyon is still going on and on about how us Politically Correct Police are really just Liberals who want to silence the right of “freedom of speech.”

Me: I should add that when I was younger in a predominantly Caucasian neighbourhood (not by my choice, I was too little), I received physical harm due to the slant of my eyes.

Your argument will probably be “But that was years ago!” You know what? Stuff like this still happens. Today. In this age. To grown adults.

So the advice on here to “ignore racism” and “they’re just words” works well until you physically get hurt from the cruelty of the outside world when they determine you “don’t belong here.”

Trikyon retorts back:

Oh noes, you were offended because you weren’t a straight white male. Well guess what, I get crap all the time for being a straight white male. So don’t you dare go throwing that crap around at me. I’ve been robbed 5 times in this past year because “I’m whitey and whitey needed to hand over his money”.

Don’t you dare give me the crap about being “prosecuted” when it happens to every. But guess what, I don’t get offended by it, I ignore it and let them continue doing it because it doesn’t bug me.

Koga Shiro points out the Obvious Derailment Tactic: (bolding emphasis mine)

Seriously, whatever anger you have over being called a name once or being shoved by a black kid or being robbed one time or whatever else, your logic and credibility broke completely when you used those experiences to turn around and say every bad thing someone says about another group is justified, no matter how strange and inappropriate and unwarranted the situation, like in videogaming.

You at least came forward and honestly told us why you’re partial on this topic, though you still haven’t given any rational reason as to why these terms are okay, or that the “problem” is people who don’t like hearing N-bombs dropped constantly while trying to play a game.

And then I came back in to point out the failing strawman’s justification:

So let me get this straight: Because someone robbed you five times this year, it’s okay to beat up Asians living in predominantly Caucasian communities?

To sum it up:

Trikyon: It’s just words!

Me: Er, you do realize minorities get physically assaulted by white people using those derogatory words?

Trikyon: Don’t give me that crap! I got robbed five times because I was a white male and “whitey needs to hand over his money.”

Me: So your argument is that because someone robbed you since you were a white male, that justifies a white person assaulting an Asian person?

It’s Called Freedom of Speech, People!

There is an ongoing debate about the usage of the term “n*gger” at the Left 4 Dead Forums I’m registered at.

Of course, as is typical, commenters come in and tell us we are looking for something to be offended by. They say we are looking to find something offensive in anything and that we aim to be the Politically Correct Police. In particular, one commenter by the name of Trikyon feels obligated to tell us how we are being yellow-bellied softies and to get over “bad words.”

One of the best responses to that was:

I think you just want the ability to say anything you want without anyone reacting to it for the sake of “freedom of speech”

Another user by the name of Koga Shiro wrote down:

Basically what you just said is if you call a woman a C— and she dislikes it, that’s her fault.

I have utterly no idea why so many people are leaping in here to defend the sort of gamers who drop offensive words all the time “just to get a rise out of people” unless they themselves are those gamers and think it’s funny. No one’s even offering their reason for defending it. They’re just repeating “get over it” like a broken record.

POLICEMATRIX responded:

correct , some women like to be called this (personal experience) it, how can i put it , excites them

Koga Shiro:

… so you’re comparing consensual intimate bedroom talk with how you talk to complete strangers? The argument is getting rather thin here.

Go use that word at a female teller in the bank and when she has a reaction tell her to get over it. See how far that gets you. The only reason you’re on this side of the argument at all is because the internet provides anonymity. There’s no defensible reason to be saying people dropping these terms are right and anyone who dislikes it is wrong.

So Trikyon launches back with this:

You all get so offended by it, then maybe you should take it up with the idiots who call each other that on a daily bases… oh wait I forgot in politically correct land, they are allowed to call each other that but others can’t say that word because its “racist” and “ignorant”.

All this boils down to is, this world has become a politically correct world of softies who need to toughen up.

And again, Koga Shiro attempts to actually put braincells into the discussion: (bolding emphasis mine)

This type of reactionary argument is rather convenient when it’s probably coming from a white male gamer who isn’t affected by any of these terms at all. Other than perhaps slight annoyance. What is it you’re really mad about? That you can’t call black people the n-word and have it be treated the same as if two black people used the word? The simple answer would be: tough. First world problems. I feel quite certain in saying the way you’d use it would have quite a different context from two black people casually using it between each other. People constantly misconstrue free speech as being a shield against any negative social repercussion for what they say— and always when what they’re saying is indefensible. You get the exact same “My free speech is being limited” crap from neo- or KKK members or the Westboro Baptist Church type crowds.

White People Are Always The Victims

So to give a bit of background, a friend called Wycked used to joke around a lot using Asian stereotypes. And by “a lot”, I mean that after finding out I was Asian, he’d find some way of bringing up a joke or a stereotype about Asians to get a reaction. For several weeks. It got to the point where I ignored all messages and Party Invites from him.

So then my old buddy Phoenix comes back. Phoenix is the type of guy who, when he becomes really angry, will let loose with racist vitrol. He’s not racist about Asians towards me (most of the time anyway), but will say racist shit about Jewish people and black people all the time. Somehow I never got around to reprimanding him about that.

Wycked sent me a private chat invite and then proceeded to give me shit for allowing Phoenix to be a racist bastard while ignoring Wycked for racial stuff that was admittedly, not quite as severe.

But something he said has managed to get me both upset, frustrated and rather ashamed.

Wycked: I find the double standards quite upsetting. Sure, I know I can be a racist jackass at times, but I’m nowhere near as bad as Phoenix. That guy is spitting about racist shit about Jews and blacks every other word, yet you say nothing to him. To be honest I find that quite upsetting.
Me: I know.
Wycked: If you’re going to hold me to a standard of not saying anything racist, then you need to do the same with him. Because frankly your bias is a little sickening and you need to tell him you won’t put up with his racial shit. It’s only fair.
Me: I kept meaning to, but never got around to it.
Wycked: I mean when he kept making all those jokes about Jews, even I was feeling offended, and it takes a lot to offend me.
Me: Yeah, I bet.
Wycked: So… to clarify, you get upset at Asian stereotypes, but other racist shit is okay? Because you got really upset when I said those Asian stereotypes but it just doesn’t seem to be having the same effect on you when Phoenix gets all racist about Jews and black people.
Me: Uh, no, I never said other racist shit was okay. And yes, it makes me uncomfortable that he keeps saying that shit.
Wycked: But I notice you don’t really get upset about that.
Me: …
Wycked: If that’s the case, and you get upset about Asian stereotypes but not other racist shit, then you need to examine your racism.
Me: (Wow. Um, wow. I don’t know whether to feel ashamed or hurt by this.) I need to examine my racism? Well of course I get more upset about Asian stereotypes, I identify with being Asian!
Wycked: Then you admit it, you’re biased in your racism.
Me: (Right. This is coming from a white guy who has never had to hide his identity.) This is coming from you.
Wycked: But this isn’t about me. You talk to a guy who’s racist every other word and you don’t give him shit. I make even the smallest Asian joke and you ignore me for weeks. I’m just a little offended by the double-standards.

I won’t deny that I’m biased towards Phoenix more so than Wycked. Obviously a joke/stereotype about Asians is going to offend me more than when people constantly bring up black people as the butt of a joke. And of course, I am not comfortable with the N-word that seems to have pervaded every dominant multiplayer aspect of first-person shooters for reasons that I can’t quite figure out.

But seriously? Telling me I need to examine my own racism because I’m Asian and I get more upset at Asian stereotypes than Jewish or black stereotypes? And this is coming from a white person who has never had to hide his identity online?

I know what racism is, thanks. I grew up being reminded of it in my neighbourhood.

Xbox Live Relationships

There are two people in the Xbox Live Scavenge community that seem to hate pretty much everyone: Let’s call them Immortal and Psyc0tic.

I was looking back over my previous Xbox Live messages and as I was listening to Immortal bash me (through some old voice clips), a surprising and somewhat revolting thought occurred to me:

If he wasn’t such an asshole and trash-talking me all the time, damn, I could really find him an attractive guy to play with.

Which is kind of scary, because he also happens to be one of The Duo who made my Scavenge nights hell for several nights on end. He’ll votekick me if I end up randomly generated in my games and trash-talk over me in the lobbies. I don’t trust him one iota, and I have some sort of twisted respect for him because I know he’s one of the best Scavenge players on here (or used to be). In any case he’s always been so much better at it Scavenge than I’ve ever been.

While I know it’s typical for gamers to trash-talk each other and spew all sorts of racist and sexist vitrol at each other, I feel like I should be able to play without being insulted or trash-talked behind my back. I feel like I should be able to play and have a good time without worrying that in some Private Party, he is secretly planning to ruin a game that I’m in. Yet I also know I’ll never be able to trust him again.

This is one of the oddest conflicts I’ve stumbled across in-game – loathing another Scavenge player, yet admiring him, wishing we could be friends, but knowing we could never be friends because we have a “history.”

If it was possible for an online person to literally hate another, that would be him against me. I don’t hate him – I tire of him. I tire of joining lobbies/games where I see he’s on the same side as me and I know I’ll just be votekicked (or trash-talked) so I leave. Which leaves me two options: 1.) Don’t play with him. 2.) Make sure I end up on the opposing team. But sometimes I am just not in the mood to play Super L33t Scavenge against people like him, which makes me look remarkably like a sore loser who can’t handle a challenge.

I do remember, back in the days where it was him and me playing Scavenge and he could solo a map with bots whereas I was lucky to get 7 cans out of 16 with the aim-bots helping me. I was terrible (still am, in some aspects), and he’d often give me advice such as “Don’t go in that room alone, ever” or “See, if you’re a Boomer, you can hide behind the generator and spawn, then vomit on all four Survivors.”

He also told me The Truth about modding. And he seemed like a genuinely nice guy. Because he seemed willing to help me and give me tips.

Until he decided to troll me, that is. Because that’s what arrogant jerks do – they troll for the attention and reputation it gives them. Because it pleases them to ruin others’ fun.

It’s not terribly difficult to avoid them these days because there’s always another match going on, but there comes the odd moment where I see their GamerTags appear on screen and I really wish – even for just a split second – that we weren’t enemies.

If you had asked me several months ago about Xbox Live friendships, I would have told you such a thing was about being gaming buddies, and not a real friendship. But as of late, I find the line blurs between “gaming buddy” and “friendship” quite easily on such a social platform, particularly when long distance relationships are brought into the picture.

Are the friendships one forms on Xbox Live real? Do they have the same value as a friendship formed in real life, meeting a person face-to-face? Due to the distance of gaming friendships and relationships in general, some would say yes, others would persist in saying no.

But the emotion and time invested with these friendships – whether they be real, somewhat real, or fake – is definitely real.

Friending Me Because I’m Female

I’ve had some people friend me in lobbies and it’s the things they say which make me wonder…

Male: So, what do you think about our teamwork? (I should note here we had been playing together & talking in Parties for several weeks)

Me: We work well together. I still don’t understand why you Friended me, though.

Male: I figure we could learn from each other a little, y’know?

Me: Mmm, perhaps? I think you’re far better than I am at this game. Don’t know why you deny it.

Male: Don’t talk like that.

Me: It’s true. You know the campaigns inside and out. I’m not sure what there is to learn from me.

Male: You shut your pretty little mouth. If I say there’s something to learn from you, it’s because it’s true.

Me: …

Male: So I meant to ask, how old are you? I know you’re not a little boy. I just wanted to comment that you sound pretty hot.

*

Or in a case where about thirty seconds before the timer starts, a teammate is “jokingly” hitting the button to give me his Medkit which prevents me from moving.

Me: What are you doing?

Teammate: (laughing and keeps ‘healing’ me)

Other teammates: (laughing, but not mocking me)

Me: Stop it! >_<

Other teammates: He’s just foolin’ with ya.

Me: I know he is, he’s my friend! Stop it, we need to get going!

(at last I hit the D-pad that uses my own Medkit, canceling his Med-Kit command on me)

Other teammates: I don’t think she liked you hitting her there, man.

Of course, my friend was not hitting on me and you can’t make character pixels touch each other inappropriately in a video game like this. But the concept was that metamorphically, when he was “using” his Medkit on me, his character would move up and down the chest-to-shoulder area on my female character.

It’s a bit of sexist humour, which is understandable in the right context as long as it isn’t demeaning. It’s about the woman, not at the woman, which is a significance difference.

And yet, if I had been a guy (in a real life, not in-game) or chosen a male character, my friend would not have attempted to make a joke out of the Medkit.

*

Of course, I’ve been trash-talked in lobbies before, and kicked for the simple reason I’m female. I realize that’s a common thing. Kicked for no reason? Common. Kicked because the player opened their mouth and revealed they happened to be a girl? It’s enough to cast doubt on the entire lobby, but still common.

Kicked because the player happens to be female? Common, but wrong.

So when I hear flattering exchanges like the above or receive them in messages, it does make me feel a mixture of relief, shame, hurt, and irritation.

Relief: That there’s one less male player who comes across as an elitist jackass and doesn’t say “Oh you’ll be the first one out/ girls can’t play video games /we have a girl in the lobby!”

Shame: That I’ve heard taunts and mockery for so long from other male players that it comes as a a relief to be complimented in an obviously sexist way based on my voice, rather than because I’m a girl who happens to enjoy playing video games.

Hurt: That someone felt I was only worthy to be friended of because I was female – and not for the way I play, my teamwork or dedication to playing the best as I can.

Irritation: At myself, for feeling relief that a guy makes sexist comments towards me rather than mocking my gender.  In other words, the mockery and accusation of “girls shouldn’t play video games” gets so bad that sexist flattery is actually welcome.

Please don’t get this wrong – I have many male friends online that I’ve spentless countless hours joking around with and generally forming a teamwork bond of sorts.

But when someone friends me and later I find them to be evasive as to why they friended me and they continue to play with me while denying that I’m worse than I really am, I start to wonder.

Do they play because I’m a reliable teammate?

Or do they play because I’m a girl?