Friday, April 22, 2011

I am Not a Man From Kazakhstan!

I started playing MMROPGs (Massive multiplayer, role playing games) in 2004. It all started innocently enough with Disney's Toontown, a game designed for seven year olds but notorious for luring their parents to play and become hopelessly addicted. I made friends that I knew only in the gaming world, friends I played four different games with over the years. I grew tired of waiting for Toontown to get new content and began exploring other games. I eventually ended up in the black tar of gaming addiction: World of Warcraft (AKA: WoW).

WoW was a real game with real battles but it was no Toontown, it was difficult and yet I hear that it is a relatively easy game. (This makes me feel very stupid) I started out rolling a Mage (creating a character who's profession was to be a mage) and I really sucked at playing. Glutton for punishment, I didn't give up. I loved the world of WoW. It had great graphics. I could get on a bat and ride in the moonlight and do lots of things besides dying in battle. Now and then, I would go back into Toontown and see my friends and be a big toon who was well respected. I'd fill myself with the swagger of success then go back into WoW and be just pathetic. Lacking any victory to give me a thrill, I decided to engage in the kind of behavior that could at least provide me a laugh: role playing. Being a huge fan of
Da Ali G Show I created a character based on Sacha Baron Cohen's Borat. This was before the movie.

My Borat was a Tauren, which is an enormous species in the game that is a half man, half cow hybrid. I walked around the beautiful scenery of WoW as my Bovine Borat harassing women while learning to play the game. Eventually I got better and I was asked to join a guild.

A guild is a group that goes on quests and raids together. Guilds can chat while playing and I thought it would be real fun to stay in character. The Borat movie was in the works, I knew eventually these people would know what I was doing but for now I thought it would be fun to make it seem real. I told them  that I was a journalist and the 2nd most famous man in my home country. I was here on a mission to gain “Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan”.  I had a lot of fun with my Borat character in WoW. The guys I played with seemed to be college students, mostly male and I was surprised that nobody caught on to what I was doing. It seemed that nobody had seen “Da Alli G Show”; but I knew in time the movie would be out and that would sort of be my punchline. I let my guildies know that they were making a movie about my mission and that I would soon be famous in America. “I will be movie star! You will be so proud you know me! You will tell all your friends! You will tell your sisters!” They reacted to that like I was just some weird, foreign guy telling tall tales.

I never did play well but I was funny so they liked me and would bring me along on raids for my limited healing ability and comic relief. Since all these guys had leveled way beyond me, I didn't engage much in battle but stayed back to heal them. The result of this is that if the team “wiped” (were all killed) I would be left alive because I had never posed a threat to the boss - the big enemy that it is the mission to kill. They would be dead and I would be alone with this creature. I would then narrate my sexual exploits with the creature while my comrades ran from the graveyard to find their bodies and resume the battle. I remember going into great detail about how I was finally left alone with this dragon we were fighting. “Oh she like me! She have very bad breath but she good kisser, I like fork tongue!” They would type “Eeew gross! Borat don't fuck the dragon, you don't know where she's been!” etc. My guildies liked me and I've always enjoyed the company of young men. I was having fun.

When we got a web page for us to organize our group endeavors we needed to use pictures of ourselves as avatars in the forums. Most of these guys used photos of their character or a favorite band. I used a photo of “myself”. It was a picture of Sacha Baron Cohen as Borat wearing a large cowboy hat. I started getting comments in game.
“Hey Borat is that you in your avatar?”

“Yes, is me! I have handsome, yes?”

One guy named “Darigaz”, kept saying “Man you look like a pervert!”

I would insist, “No that is my cousin Bilo, he is pervert. I am nicest guy!”

Dari would comment every now and then that I was just plain creepy looking with my mustache. I posted other photos of Borat that were even creepier just to mess with Dari.

I would tell them my movie was coming along great but sensed that they didn't really believe that I was soon to be a star of the silver screen. I decided to really flesh out this farce by looking online to see if there were any photographs of Sacha as Borat with the cameras around. I wanted to post something on our forum board to prove I wasn't making things up. When I looked around, I found something much better; I found stills from the now famous scene where Borat and Assamat are naked and fighting. This was wonderful! Borat and a fat guy, naked. This was just way too good! I had to send it to Dari to really freak him out. I decided not to share it with the guild but to send it to Dari by private message, that would make everything all the creepier. I included a note saying, “This is me and my good friend, Assamat, having recreations. I hope some day to meat you. Kindest Affections From Your Friend and Guild Mate, Borat” (note spelling of the word, “meat”)

Later that day I was in the game and some other guildies came on. I could see their dialogue in the text scrolling past me. They were discussing mathematics. After a while it seemed clear that they were working on some homework.
“Hey are you two in a class together? I asked
"Oh so are you in college?"
Oh dear, these guys are still in high school? They're just kids! Wow, that's a surprise. The game I had played just before WoW required people to be over 21 and this WoW was harder. I never thought these might be kids.
“So you're in High School?”
"Not yet."


“How old are you??” I asked in fear.
The reply for both was “14”. I asked what I was afraid to ask, “You know Dari in real life don't you? Is he only 14 too?”
“No ...he's 13”
Oh dear God in heaven. I have sent naked pictures to a child! I will get banned from World of Warcraft! Damn, I might get in trouble with the law! I had to do something. I had to tell them what I'd done.
 “You guys I have something to tell you! I am not a man from Kazakhstan! I am a middle aged MOTHER!” They thought I was kidding. After going on about how Borat can't be a Mom I finally got them to believe me. I explained what I had done and asked if they could tell Dari to just delete the email I sent him and we can all laugh about the joke. Now I understood why Dari kept saying he thought I was a pervert, poor kid, he was actually concerned!

“Dari's going on vacation and he uses his Dad's computer.”

Sweet buttered Jesus! That's it, there is no hope. The tabloids will love this! “America's sweetheart trolls the internet posing as a Russian man sending naked pictures to young boys” As if my career wasn't sad enough, this will kill it. I was panicky. The leader of our guild was a really sweet boy who I always assumed was a man because he was so fair and diplomatic and a good leader. He was 14 as well and he got on later in the day and told me that he was Dari's neighbor. He assured me that he met him after school and got him to delete the email before they went on vacation and before his Dad saw it. Of course they opened it up together and had a good laugh.

The final result is that we all had a good laugh and if anything I was maybe even cooler because I was a middle aged Mom who played WoW. They also now understood why I sucked so bad at the game: because I'm a middle aged Mom who plays WoW. Nice boys. My Toontown Friends soon joined WoW and we made our own guild “The Lords of Kazakhstan”. I felt safer knowing these people were old farts like me and I could be as lewd as Borat wanted to be. But I liked my little pals. Every now and then I would see one of them and they would tell me they saw the  Borat movie. They would ask if I had screwed any dragons lately and I would say “Yes! I liiiiike!” None of them ever knew that I had an identity beyond that of a middle aged mother and that I was also a little girl with a lisp that they could see on TV.

I think that would have been just too much.


fantaseeworld said...

I never knew! Wow!

Nytok (Alan Ivie) said...

OMG That is too funny. Better keep that quiet. But it does tend to make one ponder how many more of the on line characters are like that in some sort of way.

Unknown said...

If it makes you feel any better, most of those 14 year old boys play blood elf and night elf chicks, anyway! It's way safer to pose as a dude, cause in my experience they all hit on you if they find out you're really a chick. Having kids hit on a grown woman such as myself.. its all sorts of awkward. heh. Do you play Diablo 3, by any chance?

shokkou said...

I didn't know anything about you besides your stint as my least favorite Brady, but now i LOVE you! Hilarious. From another middle-aged (but not half as funny) WoWer. Rock on Gold Dust Woman! :o)

Batgurrrl said...

Excellent story. I loved it!

Susan Skelly said...

You guys are so nice! I don't play Diablo and Disney took Toontown away (I've yet to write a blog about that but I do boycott all things Disney as my own little way of fighting the cogs) There are so many things I need to do and little time for what I want to do. I have found a way to play WoW and not be in an instance for hours. I just do battle pets. This feeds my obsession and I don't have to have any reflexes or gaming prowess. What sucks about it is that I inevitably got to level 100 and still have level 90 gear. AND I play on a PVP server. I might as well walk around with a cardboard sign that says "Gank Me".
I am so stupid excited that Blizzard has finally given us a baby murloc (Terky) to have and to hold. No it didn't come in the mail, you have to dive for the egg. If anyone needs instructions on how to get the egg, I'm ready to help! Only one egg per account. You can't even get on your other faction characters to get another. Just one. But he's so CUUUUUUUTE!!! (Actually Terky is supposed to be a female - really? Blizzard is toying with the idea of sexing battle pets so that we can breed them. Of course that would make my brain explode with delight!)