January 11, 2014

A Glitch of Good Use


It was nine in the morning on some regular Skull Island Sunday a few weeks ago. I was still trying to wake up, having been greeted by nothing more than the squawk of island birds and the soft tone of the coastal breeze. Deciding to go for a quick sail, I teleported to the life fountain. The loading screen opened up to somewhere...different. Rats indeed, for under me were pirates. My boot-clad legs dangled, as did my entire self, standing comfortably on nothing. Behind me, my personal bubble had gauged some of the cliff out; I had been standing on the same one just seconds before.

"Hey!" I looked down towards the docks. Had someone just said hello...to me? Well, obviously not. Another pirate lumbered forward atop a crokogator, catching up to the speaking pirate. 

"Yeah, I'm here." 

Not knowing as to whether or not I could be seen, I decided not to teleport away. I watched the two interact and found out that they were off to do some questing in Cool Ranch. I checked my own quests at this point, having completed all the side quests within the canyons that had interested me. I stayed, replaying the conversation in my mind. People-watching is a common practice for writers, but I hadn't ever taken it so far as to truly evaluate and analyze what others had to say.

Skies forbid actually reacting. 

"Stop following me." 

I read through the chat as this conversation played out. 


"Well, okay. Want to run a dungeon?"


I smirked and clicked back to Twitter, then to my e-mail. 

After messing around with my blog for a few minutes, I returned to a much fuller text box. Many had come through with talk of pets, crowns, quests, and gear. I scribbled some notes down, putting unrelated names to phrases and filing them in a folder nearby beneath, "90 Days to Your Novel". The folder promptly fell, and I picked it and fallen papers up, glancing over one conveniently in my right hand. I shook my head and put it away, leaning back towards my laptop.

"Thanks for all the help!"

 I spied a level 65 pirate below running from a ship. A lower-level pirate stopped with his chat bubble. 

"Yeah, no problem!" 

I sat back in my chair. Maybe this people-watching wasn't people-watching at all. I had taken notes, but they didn't seem to make sense in context of what was going on. Perhaps...perhaps the context was the entire point. I wasn't people-watching at all. I was people-enjoying, and those people were enjoying themselves. My "perfect watching ledge" had turned from a glitch of good use to a chance to look back on why I had stayed in the first place.

Keep Traveling

The chat content is aligned to the right as the Pirate101 whisper messages come in from that side; it's also to separate my broken commentary from the dialogue in order to maintain fluency. 

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