This is not a complaint, whine, or pique: merely an observation.
Last night, still visiting my Blizzcon host, I logged on and was asked, sweetly, to join a spontaneous Firelands' raid. The usual suspects were there, and all was fine --I realized too late that my host's set up was not the same as mine at home, sans Vent, add ons, etc. Not having a way to communicate is problematic in a raid--and I seriously ask myself now, "What was I thinking?" For some reason, the guildmate who actually motivated us to go could not get in the raid group. He knew I didn't have Vent, and was graciously helping me from the sidelines, sort of like a seeing-eye dog with 'tude.
During the Bale'roc fight is when push came to shove, however. He spikes up these Shards of Torment, and the dance/choreography around them requires being able to hear, read, and move. Since the party knew I didn't have Vent, they decided I wouldn't be doing this dance, and would just DPS--and that is when I did stuff that was really dumb. I mostly stayed in front of Bale'roc, which is bad. Badness. Very bad. We didn't wipe, downed him, and I trotted about my merry way, oblivious to my faux pas.
Until I get a raid chat message, "Matty, do you know what the hell you are doing?"
But this simple raid message masked the underlying misogynistic nerd-rage going on. GM was, as always, a bit more gracious in his questioning of my errors.
Answer: No, no I don't. In my defense, I have a million and one things on my mind, always. I have not devoted the time to watching every fight over and over, and anticipating every scenario that can come my way. I screwed up. Won't happen again. I was so used to the shard dance, I forgot about the other fight mechanics. If I did spend that time, to raid leader level, of understanding and studying all fight mechanics, there are many players who wouldn't listen to me anyway. Kind of seems pointless at this stage of my life. Yes, I want to contribute, yes, I will do what I can to do so, but I cannot and will not overturn any more of my life to this very fun avocation.
I have many observations of Blizzcon, but the first thing I noticed was there were no lines to the women's restrooms. Ever. There was a sea of young men, from 16-39, of mostly Caucasian and Asian races, including one young man who was in line next to me while waiting to get my photo on the Frozen Throne. We struck up a conversation, and he was very sweet (I am going to be one of those old ladies who talks to everyone in the grocery store line...sorry in advance.) Now, I am thinking, that if he and I were in a pug, and I screwed up, how sweet would he be then? Hopefully, the small amount of ambassadorship I was able to manage may help all of us who feel that the game in general has gotten too angry. I will never live up to the standards my guildmate requires, I fear. I envy those guilds where everyone teases and is friendly to one another, even with mistakes. I am not going to make any hyperbolic or emotional decisions based on one player. However, in conversations with my host, he knows of players who thoroughly enjoy intentionally going out in the world and destroying other's game/play enjoyment. His criminal mastermind is invaluable to Blizzard in terms of seeing how can other players destroy others' enjoyment. Granted, he is rare, but he is out there. If I were truly evil, and I know what bothers this guidmate so much, I could use my Derping Abilities of Doom to really upset him. But I just don't have time for that nonsense.
Life is just too damn short.
Postscript: Before Alysrazor, I bowed out--wasn't fair to the group to stay through the fights without the proper communication tools. The guildmate who was helping me got to join, and I hope they had fun. I'm sure I'll hear about it later.