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December 19, 2005

A Geek's Guide To Picking Up Chicks In Computer Labs

The Royal Spawn is preparing to go to college. He wants to major in Computer Science, which is just as well, because he spends all his time either on the computer playing World Of Warcraft and Tribes, or cussing out the computer when Adelphia goes down, which is a lot. I don't even think he's aware of his foul mouth when the computer doesn't do what he wants it to. The Count and I will be sitting in the entertainment room enjoying yet another endless rerun of "Law & Order", when from the computer room we hear a loud, disembodied What the fuck? or an equally loud, disembodied How stupid can you be? Fuck! The Royal Spawn picked up his pottymouth from me. I can throw off a string of cusswords like you've never seen when I'm annoyed. I even make up my own words if the usual "fuck" and "shit" aren't good enough.

I thought of him when I read this article, The DOs and DON'Ts of Picking Up a Girl in the Computer Lab. I'm curious to see how The Royal Spawn would rank on a to-do list like this. I'm sure he will be spending a lot of time in computer labs when he's in college, and I assume he will eventually pull himself away from cussing out a motherboard to notice the girls in the room. I kinda liked most of the guy's advice. I just wanted to add to it.

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The DOs and DON'Ts of Picking Up a Girl in the Computer Lab

DO try to sound smart

Four out of five women agree that intelligence is sexy, and that's just because the fifth one was too hung over from having wild drunken sex with an extremely smart man to fill out the questionnaire. If you're in the computer lab, you're surrounded by the latest in internet-cruising and document-collating technology. Try and get across the impression that you know what the hell you're doing. If you can slip in a few double-entendres involving "RAM," "hard drive," or "mouse sensitivity," she'll be butter in your hands. Try these classic lines:

* "Hi, I'm from tech support, may I check your service tag?"
* "3 1/2 floppy? No, I've made some serious upgrades."
* "I'll give you this 'Free iTunes Song' Bottlecap if you have sex with me." (careful with this one, as you'll probably have to come through with the song eventually)

Are geeks really this hard up to get Teh Sex? These pick-up lines are so bad I think they'd make any girl laugh. They made me laugh. Well, not the "RAM" and "hard drive" comments because they're so passe. Maybe you'll get extra points if you come up with an especially clever geek pick-up line. The Royal Spawn is very sarcastic and quick with a comeback - something else he got from me. That will work in his favor. Plus, if he delivers all those ridiculous lines with a silly grin on his face, showing that he is taking none of this seriously, that will also work well in his favor.

I agree that you'd better be able to come through with that free MP3 if you use the last line.

DON'T look at porn

Seriously, dude, it's the computer lab. I know, I know, it's tough. The urge is there. Ever since man created the internet to communicate troop movements during the Civil War, porn has ALWAYS pervaded a huge chunk of cyberspace ("The Ladies of Lincoln!"). I'm not here to judge. We've all looked at it before. In fact, you're probably looking at it right now. If you're in the campus computer lab, though, it's probably a good idea to close that browser window that's locked onto AstronautsBoningMidgets.com. Any chick who walks by and sees that is not going to give you the time of day, let alone sleep with you; in fact, she'll probably just report you. We've all seen "that guy" in the campus crime report. Don't be him. In the rare chance that a girl who is into that kind of stuff walks by, I don't know what to tell you. Hold onto her for dear life, son: you've found a winner. Stop by the costume store, pick up that Astronaut costume you've had your eye on, and go hog wild.

I agree with not looking at porn, but for a different reason. I noticed a few years ago that The Royal Spawn looked at porn on his computer. He found out the hard way that looking at porn gets you stuck with spyware and scads of pop-ups that won't go away no matter what you do. You get trapped in Ether Porn Land, and you can't get out without quitting out of Explorer. I don't think he looks at porn anymore. Not that I'd care, since I write women-friendly erotica. It's just that looking at porn is more of a pain for your computer than anything else.

Yeah, still, it's uncool for a girl to catch you looking at porn. She'd just go "ew", and move on to more mature guys.

DO dress for success

The antiquated notion of a nerd as a virginal, Star Wars-watching, glasses-wearing Momma's Boy is gone, faded into the ethereal wastes of stereotypes gone-by. Well, not really. That guy who's sitting across the lab in a Boba Fett T-Shirt looking at a blueprint of the Millennium Falcon through his Coke-bottle glasses while e-mailing his mom? He's probably a nerd. Throw something at him.

The "new" nerd, however, is not like those old nerds at all. He's sexy, and smart, and good at figuring out why the hell his hot girlfriend's new John Mayer CD won't work in her laptop (answer: he broke it, because he's a heterosexual). Even if you know nothing about computers, if you're at the computer lab, you're going to want to cash in on this new girl-attracting gold-mine. Wear a nice shirt, with a pen in the pocket that says "Hey, I'm smart and important, I may need to write something down at a moment's notice." Carry around a memory stick, or something that looks like one. A pack of gun will probably work, as long as you don't try to stick it into the computer while a girl is watching. Finally, for Chrissakes, don't wear a jersey. Jocks have long been the mortal enemy of nerds, and nerds have slowly but surely spread the idea that they know nothing about computers. Girls know this, so leave your jersey outside the computer lab. When you leave, you can put it back on and punch a geek in the face.

Thank God The Royal Spawn doesn't care about clothes. He's never been one to follow the latest fashions. His clothes just look normal. He doesn't wear "Star Trek" or "Star Wars" t-shirts. He only wants more sweaters, because it gets cold up here in northern Massachusetts. His glasses don't look like pop-bottle specs. He actually looks like Harry Potter in his glasses. His classmates have told him that, and he cringes every time he hears it. It's not too bad, though, because he doesn't act anything like Harry Potter. His school photo last year made him look like Norman Bates at the end of "Psycho", when Norman has the fly on his hand and he says "I would never hurt a fly". Honest, The Royal Spawn had that same creepy expression on his face. I cut out a picture of Anthony Perkins that I found online with that expression, and I stuck it next to his photograph. That was really creepy.

I think he's out of his Norman Bates phase now. He's not out of Harry Potter, yet, though. Give it time.

He doesn't have a million pens sticking out of his pocket. He keeps them in his backpack, where they belong. I don't think he'd be caught dead with a slide-rule sticking out of his back pocket.

DON'T read over her shoulder

If you've spotted a girl in the lab who you think you'd like to "get to know better," the first thing you're going to want to do is try and look at what she's doing on the computer. Don't. This is not going to get you any points with her. I can't tell you how many times I've peeked over a random girl's shoulder in the lab and gotten slapped simply for saying, "What are you looking at?" or "Who are you writing an e-mail to?" or "You're looking at YahooNews? It's things like that that make me cry when I think about you while masturbating." Yeah, I don't know why that ticks them off either. Girls are weird.

The Royal Spawn better not say anything like "when I think about you while masturbating." I wouldn't blame the girl if she smacks him upside the head. I don't think he's say anything like that, though. It's not his style. Plus, he's not likely to look over anyone's shoulder anyway. He gets on our case when we look over his shoulder. He's more likely to make faces at her from the other side of the room. I don't know if that'll make the girls like him, but it sure beats hanging over their shoulders like a spider plant.

DO offer to go get what she printed

Chivalry, folks. It's alive and well. If you notice that the hot girl next to you is getting up to pick up something she printed off, stand up and say in a strong-yet-casual tone, "Hey, I'm going to get something I printed, do you want me to pick that up for you?" Even if she says no, making the offer is what is going to endear you to her. She can see that you're a provider. She can sense the intoxicating masculinity wafting off of you in waves, telling her that if she ever needs an English essay retrieved, you're her guy.

If she says "yes," things can get tricky. The work-study person handing out printed papers is probably going to look at you strangely when you pick up a paper with the name "Betty" on it. In this situation, the best thing to do is probably to scream, at the top of your lungs, "BETTY IS MY NAME, AND I LIVE WITH THAT SHAME EVERY WAKING MOMENT! DON'T JUDGE ME, CHARLATAN!" and run off.

"She can see that you're a provider. She can sense the intoxicating masculinity wafting off of you in waves, telling her that if she ever needs an English essay retrieved, you're her guy." Bah hah hah hah hah!!!! I hope the guy who wrote this isn't serious. He makes guys who do this sound like labrador retrievers.

DON'T try to make out with her on the floor of the computer lab

At least, not yet. This one may seem obvious, but I've been burned by it before.

He's tried it and got slapped until next Tuesday? Good for him that he learned his lesson. The computer lab is not the place to make out. The rise in temperature is probably bad for the computers.

DO set the mood

The most powerful sexual organ, according to most licensed sexologists and a few cheap hookers, is the mind. If you're trying to get into a girls pants, it's best to go by way of her brain. Girls like romance, and candles, and all that other stuff that Hallmark created to sell more cards, so if you want to arouse a woman, you've got to set the mood.

It's best to start out subliminally. Head to a music website and find a soothing, sexual track, something like Marvin Gaye, Norah Jones, or MC Hammer. Turn the volume down so low that she can barely hear it, just high enough that she's hearing it loud and clear where it matters: in her loins. She won't even know what she's hearing, or where it's coming from, but she'll be strangely drawn to you and your lab computer, like a baby to an inviting teat.

Next, hack into the school's power system and dim the lights. I would tell you how to do this, but I don't know how to do this. I knew a kid who did, though, and you know what? He got laid all the time. No joke.
Finally, find a romantic picture with google image search. Try looking for something like romance, candles, beach, or copulation. Set this image as the desktop and, with a raised eyebrow, turn your monitor slowly in her direction. She'll get the right idea.

I haven't heard anything by Norah Jones, but I hear she's good. That one will pass. Marvin Gaye? He's passe, isn't he? Plus, he's dead, and only people my age listen to him, as far as I know. I don't listen to Marvin Gaye. I'm sure the writer of this article is thinking of the song "Sexual Healing". I don't know if this is true, but I heard that Gaye wrote that song for his ex-wife. He was supposed to give her all proceeds of that song as part of a divorce settlement, so he tried to write something that would not be a hit. It ended up being his biggest hit, and he got socked in the wallet. This could be an urban legend for all I know.

I hit the brakes at M. C. Hammer. Hammer is so bad news. The very first concert I ever did tech work for was Hammer. I enjoyed my first professional gig, but his is not the kind of music to set a romantic mood. Plus, he's so out-of-date and completely broke. He made millions, blew them all, and had to file for bankruptcy. Everyone knows I listen to music no one has heard of. I think setting a fun, romantic mood could easily be done with "Hey Pretty" by Poe. The song is very funny, and it's a catchy tune. Very tongue-in-cheek.

Any music geeks out there who can recommend romantic songs? Sarah McLachlan comes to mind. So does Delerium. If she's into ska, she might like No Doubt, although I think the hard core ska fans will sooner slit their wrists than listen to No Doubt. "Bitch", "Holly", and "Ready To Go" by Republica are also good choices to set a good mood, albeit it a fast-moving one. Just don't play "Trouble" by Coldplay or "Mad World" by Gary Jules. You don't want to depress the poor thing.

DON'T throw shit at her

I don't know about your school, but our campus computer lab is absolutely plastered with signs that say QUIET, STUDY ENVIRONMENT, and NO CELL PHONES. So how are you supposed to get a girl's attention? There are many acceptable methods: a slight tap on the shoulder, an instant message, or a carrier pigeon trained in the art of stealth (try and stop me from using THAT, campus police!).

One way that you SHOULDN'T try and get a girl's attention is by throwing shit at her. This can go wrong so fast, in so many ways, that it's almost mind-boggling. I'll just put it this way: if you hit a girl in the face with a backpack, it's going to bruise up pretty badly, and what's the point of tapping that? Trust me, unless it's Halloween and you can be reasonably sure that she'll be wearing a mask when you're in bed that night, be a gentleman and walk over to get her attention. Besides, after she's your girlfriend, you can beat her all you want buy her things! [Careful! -ed.]

What the hell? No decent guy beats up his girlfriend, and then buys her shit. Plus, remember there's a study that found a link between abuse and buying girls flowers. It's his way to "make up" after busting open her face. That's such bad news. Buying a girl flowers after pummeling her is part of the honeymoon phase:
"The violence is then followed by a period in which the abuser sometimes feels guilt, shame, self-pity, or depression. This is called the 'honeymoon stage'. Because of the fears of the abused partner leaving, the abuser makes up by giving special attention, gifts, flowers, and apologies. The abuser appears loving, caring, sensitive, kind, passive, and sincere about your well-being.

But it takes more than special attention and apologies to end the violence. The abuser must take the full responsibility for his violence and the impact it has had on you and your children. It only takes a while before the 'cycle of violence' repeats itself again, the honeymoon period becomes shorter and the promises of change turn into threats of violence again."

I agree that you don't throw shit at her. Don't throw wads of paper at her, either. You are no longer in high school. You can wave to her from across the room. Or you can stand up, catch her attention as you stand, and smile at her. The key is to somehow get her attention, and throwing shit at her won't do it in a good way.

DO look at Facebook

In the Church of College, Facebook is a God, second in power only to the dieties of Beer and Marijuana. If you want to get closer to a girl, let her see that you're checking you're profile, or maybe adding something inspired like Caddyshack II to your "favorite movies" list. She will probably say something like, "Oh, you're on Facebook?" And you should reply, "Yes, my lamb, and you?" She will invariably reply, "Yes," because every single person in college is on Facebook. If you're lucky, she'll tell you her name, and you can add her to your friends list, if you think she's good enough. Then it's on to months of faux-sexual poking, wall messages, and never seeing each other face-to-face again.

I must not be a real geek. I have no idea what Facebook is.

"Caddyshack II"? You can't be serious. I can see adding something like the original "Caddyshack" or - even better - "Groundhog Day". Groundhog day is a nice, funny, romantic movie. Both girls and guys like it. I hear girls like to be scared during horror movies, but they don't like gore. I have no idea if that's true, though. Add some good horror movies to your Facebook (whatever that is) like "The Devil's Backbone" or "Dead Birds" or - special for The Royal Spawn - "Psycho". Knowing The Royal Spawn, he'd add every episode of "Monty Python's Flying Circus" and "Monty Python And The Holy Grail" to his Facebook. He has worn out his DVD of "Holy Grail." Ni!

DON'T play online poker, you fucking asshole

This is a computer lab, not Vegas, and you're definitely not going to be in the World Poker Championship any time soon. So do some actual work or buy a computer to play on in your dorm room with all that cash I'm sure you're making playing online, you fucking asshole.

The Royal Spawn doesn't do online gambling. It would probably bore him. He'd be caught playing World Of Warcraft. If a girl who is also on WOW catches him, they have something in common. Good play!

DO pick a good place to sit

Nothing puts the damper on you and the sexy girl from Intro to Lit whispering sweet nothings in each other's ears like a fat Lab Attendant looming over you and bellowing, "NO TALKING!" If you're serious about picking up a girl in the computer lab, positioning is everything.

Head for a place away from the lab attendants, preferably on the other side of the room. These people are angry loners who take their jobs very seriously, and would like nothing more than to see you touch a vagina exactly as many times as they have: once, at camp. (Either that, or they're slackers who want a job where they have nothing to do but fix paper jams. It varies.) If you don't want them bringing the big work-study hammer down on your ChickQuest, sit where they can't see you, hear you, or smell your fear.

Avoid computer stalls, cubicles, or anything with walls. You're never going to make any progress if you have to spend all your time leaning back precariously, peeking around a wall like a hillbilly talking to his fine cousin around the door of the chicken barn. Head for the computers that are set up along the wall, all next to each other. Set your sights on the girl of your choice, then sit at the computer next to hers. If you can work these variables just right, you'll be able to make awkward, hushed conversation to your heart's content.

What if the girl of your choice is sitting in a computer stall or cubicle? You'd be shit out of luck. I guess you'd have to IM her with something especially catchy, not "I'll give you a free MP3 of your choice if you have sex with me." That will get you a trojan horse sent in your direction.

This guy who wrote the article seems hell bent on having Teh Sex with anyone, and using all kinds of subterfuge to get his dick wet. If it's obvious that's all a guy is interested in, it'll backfire on him unless that's what the girl wants, too. He makes it sound like the average geek will shrivel up and die if he doesn't get Teh Sex as quickly as possible. Plus there's that stereotype that geeks can't get laid. I know that can't possibly be true. Geeks rule the world. I see nothing wrong with using the advice he gives to just meet girls and get to know them better. That will probably take less effort and it'll be less nerve-wracking. Teh Sex will come when the time is right.

As I've already mentioned, The Royal Spawn has a penchant for cussing when the other WOW gamers are acting like idiots, or when the computer isn't working properly. I know that he'll catch girl's attention when he comes up with one of his lines while bitching out the computer. He does it so sub-consciously it's funny to hear. When it's quiet in the room, and a girl hears him suddenly say "You've gotta be fucking kidding me!", she'll start laughing. He can use the opportunity to catch her attention, as long as he isn't spending all his energy cussing out the computer.

DON'T let her catch you looking at porn

I know, I already said that you shouldn't look at porn in the first place, but sometimes you have no other options: Your roommate is always around, watching you; you don't have a computer of your own; you haven't touched a girl in eleven and a half months; I've heard it all before. If the lab is your last and only resort, sometimes you have no choice but to look at porn in the computer lab. And I respect that. Onward, Christian Soldier.

If a girl sees you looking at this porn, however, the jig is up. Diversionary tactics are your best friend here. Try one of these:

GIRL: Are you looking at porn?
YOU: No, I'm doing research.

GIRL: Are you looking at porn?
YOU: No, I'm blind, you heartless bitch.

GIRL: Are you looking at porn?
YOU: No.
GIRL: I can see porn right there on your screen.
YOU: Then YOU'RE looking at porn.
GIRL: What the hell are you talking about?
(pause)
YOU: I'll give you this free iTunes song if you have sex with me.

That last one was great until the "I'll give you a free MP3 if you have sex with me" line. If I was the girl, and heard The Royal Spawn come back with "Then YOU'RE looking at porn." I'd have laughed out loud. The author of this article should have left it at that. A guy caught like this looking at porn could have delivered that line, and then give the girl a big, cheery smile and roll his eyes. Then he could say, "Hi, I'm so-and-so" and hold out his hand. That would have deflected the porn business nicely. I'm sure The Royal Spawn would let out his inner smartass to handle such a situation nicely.

DO leave your iPod conspicuously out next to the keyboard

Like the colorful plumage of a peacock in the animal kingdom, iPods are the sleek fleathers that we humans spread to attract the opposite sex. If you're listening to music in the lab, leave your iPod in plain sight, where a passing female can see it. If she smiles approvingly, nod at her, then caw and peck at her flesh. This will show her that you are interested as well.

I guess this means I have to buy The Royal Spawn an iPod. I already bought him a 5-year Certificate of Deposit, which I think is a better Christmas present. I don't think he'd bother to use an iPod. He's happy with the songs he has on his iTunes. He has good music on his iTunes, too, and his selections would impress anyone. That's the real crux of the iPod issue - what music do you have on it? If a young man has Britney Spears and glitter rock from the '80s, he'll scare women away. "Coldplay" is a mixed bag. You either love 'em or hate 'em. I personally like 'em a lot. I swear by my iPod. I always have it on in the car. Gotta have my tunes.

DON'T post to a blog
I cannot stress this enough: do not let a girl see you posting to any kind of blog. You will never, ever get laid. Seriously. Take it from me.

Hey, there is nothing wrong with blogs. Just post to the good ones. You can find lots of good blogs on my sidebar. I just hope The Royal Spawn doesn't get caught posting on my blog. It wouldn't do for a girl to see him hanging out with his mommy.

Posted on December 19, 2005 at 07:56 AM | Permalink

Comments

As someone who has a Computer Science degree that is barely
worth the paper it is printed on in this age of offshore
outsourcing, I would recommend that the Spawn look long and
hard at his choice of computer anything before pulling the
trigger.

Just a word of caution.

puff

Posted by: Mark "Puff" Anderson at Dec 19, 2005 11:27:02 AM

>...it's uncool for a girl to catch you looking at porn.
>She'd just go "ew", and move on to more mature guys.

Who are more sophisticated...and hide it when they are
looking at porn.

HA!

puff

Posted by: Mark "Puff" Anderson at Dec 19, 2005 11:30:01 AM

Thanks for the advice, Mark. The Count used to work in the game industry, and The Royal Spawn loves games. He could go into that area with a Computer Science degree. He wants a warmer climate, and Blizzard is in California. That's one possibility for him.

Posted by: The Countess at Dec 19, 2005 11:44:38 AM

I wonder if my mom had expressed an interest in my romantic life would I have been able to avoid years of involuntary celebacy. Would she have helped me deal with my insecurities & misperceptions or would I have viewed it as meddling and cut off dialog when it got too hot?

When the time comes with my own spawn, I wonder how involved I should get? Beyond teaching the mechanics of safe sex, how much should I know about his sex life? Have you gotten much "MYOB, mom" from the Royal Spawn?

Posted by: at Dec 19, 2005 12:47:56 PM

No, I haven't gotten a "MYOB, mom" from The Royal Spawn. I just make sure he doesn't have any squishy ideas about sex. He knows I write erotica, and he just rolls his eyes. I try to be as honest as I can if he has questions. I think it depends on how you handle it. I haven't sat him down to have a talk about Teh Sex, which is probably a good thing. That would have sounded like a lecture. I just take opportunities when they arise to talk about whatever needs to be talked about. He's been a good kid so far who hasn't felt that I've butted into his life too much. That sounds good to me. He usually works out his problems by himself, but if he needs help he comes to me. That's fine in my book.

Posted by: The Countess at Dec 19, 2005 12:58:19 PM

Thanks for the advice, Mark. The Count used to work in the game industry, and The Royal Spawn loves games. He could go into that area with a Computer Science degree. He wants a warmer climate, and Blizzard is in California. That's one possibility for him.

If he ends up working for Blizzard, can you tell him that Brood Wars left a ton of issues unresolved and that Starcraft 2 or another Starcraft add-on is a must?


Your post is mostly right on, I think, and the original do's and don'ts list sounds like it was written by someone with the maturity of an average 11-year-old. The only part of it that makes sense is the suggestion not to look at porn, something I would heartily recommend to anyone (but maybe I'm the only one who thinks pictures of blowjobs are disgusting).


Now, unlike the Royal Spawn, I'm not particularly good at comebacks; I'm extremely sarcastic, but I often find myself telling my girlfriend, "Damn, I can't think of any sarcastic comment to what you said." I do look like Harry Potter, which is annoying because I hate the franchise with passion.


The unsolicited dating advice I'd give to people is not to look for "girls" or "boys." If you do, you'll end up being with the first person you find, who will usually not be that good for you. Instead, look passively, and if you find someone who you think will be a really good match for you, then make your move.

Posted by: Alon Levy at Dec 19, 2005 10:10:59 PM

Facebook is a college social network. While not a god here, it's definitely a useful tool for judging one's friends and acquaintances. Monty Python and the Holy Grail is good and popular enough that others won't think he's a snob, but declaring Anchorman, for example, his favorite movie of all time will ensure that no discerning girls ever date him.
Also, pictures of people holding red plastic cups and looking glassy eyed are very uncool. Not to mention spectacularly unflattering.

Posted by: Carmen at Dec 20, 2005 7:47:25 AM

Thanks for explaining what Facebook is, Carmen. It sounds like it would come in handy to get to know other people. I wish I had Facebook when I was in college. I could have saved myself a lot of grief. ;)

I don't think The Royal Spawn would like "Anchorman". He's pretty picky about his movies. Since he doesn't read my blog (or any other blog for that matter), it's safe for me to say that I bought him "Risky Business", "Fast Times At Ridgemont High", and "The Sting" for Christmas. I bought him "The Sting" specifically so he can find out that Paul Newman did things other than make pasta sauce and salsa. He loves Newman's Own. Plus, that movie is excellent, and he does like caper movies. He loves "Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels". I was surprised when he actually sat down with me and watched "Journey To The Center Of The Earth". He kept begging me to get Pat Boone to stop singing, and he kept asking "why is that duck there?" If you've seen that old classic, you'd know what I'm talking about. I know that "Holy Grail" has geek appeal, and it's not too out there, so he won't get negative points for liking it. He can recite entire passages from that movie. He watched "Father Ted" and "Absolutely Fabulous" on TV with me a few years ago, and liked both. I bought him some DVDs of both for Christmas a few years ago. He's not into them anymore, but he still likes "Holy Grail".

I knew I was getting old the moment I learned that The Royal Spawn and his friends associated Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward with food. None of them know both of them made great movies. That was the moment I knew I was officially past middle age.

Posted by: The Countess at Dec 20, 2005 8:02:50 AM

Alon, if he does end up working for Blizzard, I tell him to give them grief about Broodwars and there is desperate need for another Starcraft. I'm sure he'll also give them an earful about all the bugs in World of Warcraft.

I like Myst, Riven, Exile, and Uru. They are my favorite games. I used to hang out on the message boards and in Until Uru (the online game), but the computer I used for Until Uru crashed. I haven't signed back up yet. I remember when the game makers were asking the people on the message boards for suggestions for things they wanted in the game. This was before the Uru expansion came out. Lots of people were talking about the clothes the characters wore. I wanted the dresses one of the main female characters wore in Riven to be included in the Uru expansion - and they added the dresses when the game came out! I was so happy. Someone liked my suggestion. So, game makers do listen to the fans, at least they do in the Myst universe.

I agree with you about the maturity level of the guy who wrote the original list (I was wondering the same thing), but there were some nuggets of truth in what he wrote. I liked quite a bit of it. He was creative, and he had a sense of humor, which always works for me. The Royal Spawn and his best friend don't look at porn. I used to check the "history" list after they were away from the computers, and both of them look at game and anime stuff. I don't check up on them anymore because I see no reason to.

I agree with you about not looking for "girls" or "boys". That makes you look desperate. I think if you put yourself in situations where you are with people who have the same interests you have, you'll have a better chance of meeting someone with whom you are compatible. Even if you don't end up dating, you can end up with some great friends, both male and female.

Posted by: The Countess at Dec 20, 2005 8:16:35 AM

My favorite games are all fairly old, since I haven't had much exposure to new developments in gaming since about 2001. The games I'm playing lately are the first Red Alert, Starcraft (plus Brood Wars), and Novastorm. The only new games I ever play are 100-KB Flash games online I compete with my girlfriend in. I used to play Might and Magic 7 and read some fan forums, including the one about the tribute game made by the fans, but I don't think I've touched M&M in at least a year, probably two.

I'm not sure Blizzard is that responsive to fans. I suspect the reaction of a Blizzard manager to a new programmer who tells him that there needs to be another Starcraft is the same as the reaction of a Redstate moderator when a newbie tells him to respect and include liberals more.

About porn, don't be that sure your son's not watching any. I've watched porn exactly once in my life, and when I did I made sure to delete all incriminating evidence from my history, not because my parents might check it but because I wanted to suppress the fact that I'd done. I do that a lot, or at least used to do that - mostly when looking at band websites, or at Starcraft websites, or at anything I wasn't "supposed" to be looking at.

Posted by: Alon Levy at Dec 20, 2005 12:06:42 PM

hhahah that was soooo funny

*from someone who has been there in OZ...*

Posted by: clare eats at Dec 21, 2005 10:42:21 AM

I had fun writing it, Clare. Since The Royal Spawn doesn't read my blog or any other blog for that matter it's safe to talk about him here. His mommy is proud of him. ;)

Posted by: The Countess at Dec 21, 2005 11:07:21 AM

I had fun writing it, Clare. Since The Royal Spawn doesn't read my blog or any other blog for that matter it's safe to talk about him here. His mommy is proud of him. ;)

Posted by: The Countess at Dec 21, 2005 11:08:09 AM

Facebook is the college equivalent of MySpace (or Xanga). It's also fairly secure in that you have to have a college email to be able to register.

Teh sex?

I thought you guys were Mac people? You know, no popups, spyware, etc.....

Posted by: Moi ;) at Dec 23, 2005 10:20:41 PM

We are but we have PCs too. The spyware come up on one of the PCs.

Posted by: The Countess at Dec 24, 2005 9:14:22 AM