Under the heading of 'bad assumptions', I had one of those WoW moments last week where I can't decide to be amused, offended, or baffled.
Last Wednesday I had the day off but the kids were at school and my wife was at work. Woot! WoW time! Well, Blizz decided to perform the downtime on Wednesday instead of Tuesday, so I got a late start on any goofing around. I finally got logged into A-52 early in the afternoon, and Neve quickly got into first a Dark Portal and then a Magister's Terrace run.*
The group was chatty enough, which was good because we wiped repeatedly on MgT. I'm pretty sure that it had something to do with the three Death Knights in the group, two of which didn't know what to do at all. I described them in guild chat as Larry, Moe, and Curly, and you can just imagine the ineptitude at play. Sometime after the third or fourth wipe, we took a short break to repair our gear.
"Do we have enough time to finish this?" one of the DKs asked.
"Sure! I'm on leave!" "I can. School's on break." "Same here."
"I'm fine," I replied after checking the clock. "The kids don't get off of school for a couple more hours."
That announcement kind of brought the others up short.
"That's cool! I wish my mom played WoW." "Same here."
I'll be honest. I didn't know what to say.
I know plenty of women who play WoW (it was Soul's wife who got me into playing in the first place), so I don't think it unusual. I know moms who play during the day, too. However, these kids made the very incorrect leap from "kids at school" to "mom", and I felt I ought to set the record straight.
At the same time, I wondered whether it would do any good to say anything. Any striving for accuracy aside, was it such a bad thing to leave them thinking that I was a woman? There wasn't anything resembling flirting going on, and there definitely wasn't any preferential treatment my way. The first rule of WoW is that you don't know who is on the other end of the computer unless you get on Vent or Mumble; making assumptions in an MMO can get you in hot water.
In the end, I decided to just not say anything and just keep running the instance. You could argue that it was dishonest to let them believe otherwise --and I'd not disagree with you, either-- but what kept running through my mind was that I play with the people they imagined me to be, and that maybe it was an eye opening experience for them. If there was more asshatery going on --as opposed to ineptitude-- I might have responded differently, but I figured there was no sense in busting their bubble over that.
*I finished up the BC Dungeon Achievement at-level, since I know that I probably won't be able to solo these later instances as a Mage until L85, and MGT probably not at all.