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March 15, 2021

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Connor

We’re being asked to conform to an orthodoxy which we haven’t had a say in

That.

H

"stop reducing my person to a racial category in your teach ins"

https://www.thecollegefix.com/watch-fed-up-uvermont-professor-speaks-out-against-antiracism-calls-whiteness-dogma-discriminatory/

Richard

From academics to high priests in two easy steps...

JuliaM

I see Khan is busy finding a Routemaster to throw Cressida Dick under...

Zionist Overlord #73

Don't know if this has been posted here already, but GarbageHuman appears to be back.
https://twitter.com/Gee2TheAitch

WTP

UVermont prof:

"The thinking that informs [whiteness] is so crude and so lacking in falsifiability and it speaks so eloquently to our tribal impulses that the same logic that informs what’s currently being called whiteness now can easily find its way to desperate persons who need a group to hate and who will adopt the suppositions that inform whiteness towards their own ends,” Kindsvatter said.
"Find its way to"? You clueless dolt. That's from whence it bloody originates.

David

GarbageHuman appears to be back.

From which, I see that the Los Angeles Times thinks that people in wheelchairs aren’t doing enough hiking.

[ Added: ]

Sadly, the Los Angeles Times is paywalled, and I’m not inclined to encourage them in cash form. But from other reactions to the piece, it seems to include the standard, near-ubiquitous question-begging, whereby statistical differences in group activity and interest are framed by default as some systemic and nefarious exclusion. Generally, with “whiteness” lurking in there somewhere, along with intimations of racism.

But if someone can’t bring themselves to engage in some supposedly desired activity simply because they don’t “see themselves represented” and therefore don’t “feel comfortable,” then it seems to me they’re not really trying and are basically making excuses.

David

And on the subject of “diversity” in hiking, we’ve been here before, of course.

More than once.

Karl

If you say so
https://twitter.com/Gee2TheAitch/status/1370821237186949122

Farnsworth M Muldoon

He's on a roll.

JuliaM

‘Yes, my adoptive daughter resisted arrest and shot a cop but why did he let himself get shot? Isn’t it really his fault?’

https://t.co/2JcShIZngs

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Ouroboros; faster please.

[+]

But if someone can’t bring themselves to engage in some supposedly desired activity simply because they don’t “see themselves represented” and therefore don’t “feel comfortable,” then it seems to me they’re not really trying and are basically making excuses.

That.

ComputerLabRat

But if someone can’t bring themselves to engage in some supposedly desired activity simply because they don’t “see themselves represented” and therefore don’t “feel comfortable,” then it seems to me they’re not really trying and are basically making excuses.

That.

Dangit [+] beat me to it. I would only add "or hold some position" to can’t bring themselves to engage in some supposedly desired activity. This idea that we need to have the flavor of the month represented in some position (usually of power) before anyone else of that flavor can be there is stupid. Has no one ever heard of being a trailblazer? Or is that too much like work.

David

That.

As I mentioned the last time this subject cropped up, the East Asian walkers and hikers I see in the nearby Peak District – and people just enjoying a modest stroll in pleasing scenery – don’t seem to be inhibited by their minority status. They don’t seem to require hand-holding or identitarian affirmation. They just, you know, go for a walk. But then, they don’t appear to be steeped in a pernicious and infantilising victimhood culture propagated by lefties week-in, week-out.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Related, the inequality of kayaking.

Short version - woman takes on whitewater over her head (NPI) with less than optimal outcome.

I'm finding that it has to do with how I’m wrestling with endings and how I’m finally starting to navigate, and do something about, the inequality I feel as a woman in the outdoor industry. I find myself debating whether or not my emotions are valid, and how to put words to those emotions—something that I’m becoming more and more forced to face. I think I’ve always felt this while navigating the outdoor world—a world where people do a double take when they see a young half-Filipino woman with a whitewater kayak...

After kayaking only two years in a flood stage river how could it could be the fault of anything else.

Governor Squid

I guessed that they mentioned the “big drop” to get a laugh and mess with me.

White men never do this sort of thing to one another. It's strictly a way that we keep minority chicks in line.

pst314

After kayaking only two years in a flood stage river how could it could be the fault of anything else.

I wonder why she did not seek out a group of beginners.

pst314

a world where people do a double take when they see a young half-Filipino woman with a whitewater kayak

With the implication that this might be raacism. The reality, of course, is that the people she encounters are not thinking about her much at all, but at most merely noticing someone who looks a little out of the ordinary.

Governor Squid

Joey: "You think Gabi is okay?"
Karl: "Sure. Why wouldn't she be?"
Joey: "Well, she took a pretty good tumble in that hole while we were coming through Hollywood."
Karl: "That? She was down for like ten seconds. You and I have both gone through way worse than that! I'm sure she was shaken up a bit, but she's back in her boat and telling everyone she's fine."
Joey: "I suppose you're right. We should get going. I mean, God forbid we treat her like a baby -- she'd probably write some 5,000-word essay about how hard it is to be treated seriously when you're a girl kayaker!"

Sporkatus

White men never do this sort of thing to one another

I am routinely amazed by how many women take affectionate male "ball-busting" as an attack on their sex, via them.
This, with all the gripes about how "women are socialized to x" or "taught not to y" when there hasn't been one solitary male involved in that process.

Not to mention the enabling in distinct women's culture of toxic grudge-holding.

Let's Have A Conversation about Toxic Femininity, shall we?

Farnsworth M Muldoon

...but at most merely noticing someone who looks a little out of the ordinary.

A university student kayaking the James in and near Richmond, VA, nobody would notice. However...

Crying because I was moving away from my home in three days, because I was graduating college during a pandemic without a Senior Show—just a makeshift online exhibition—and wasn’t able to get the recognition I had hoped for or expected.

Oh noes, no senior show where people weren't giving her the expected participation trophy. What is a strong empowered woman to do but cry.

Governor Squid

In municipal public finance in the U.S. there's a big financial document called the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, or CAFR. Today I learned that we're no longer allowed to say the word "CAFR," because it sounds too much like a South African racial slur.

I'm guessing that some fresh-out-of-college finance clerk just saw Lethal Weapon 2 for the first time and found a way to leave her mark on the profession.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Today I learned that we're no longer allowed to say the word "CAFR," because it sounds too much like a South African racial slur.

Use it because it sounds like kafir and if they gripe, say you are denouncing all the infidels in solidarity with our Islamic brothers. That'll shut 'em up right quick.

Governor Squid

Let's Have A Conversation about Toxic Femininity, shall we?

Can you imagine the ten-page feature in GQ about how millions of men would rather spend time in an unfinished, unheated garage, watching sports and throwing darts and drinking beer with the other husbands on their block, because they all feel unwelcome in their own homes?

"Jesus, Doug -- can't you go outside if you have to fart like that?"
"Give it a rest, Karen -- something needs to counteract the sickening cloud of potpourri saturating this place!"

Sporkatus

the people she encounters are not thinking about her much at all

I have become convinced that what fuels a very large number of Angry Studies types is a very potent blend of paranoia and sollipsism.

They start off on the foot that "I feel out of place, this discomfort is because of my race/not-fitting-in", and then, since they think about their race/complication all the time, they imagine everyone else must think about that race or complication all the time. Thereafter, we have the cartoon image of the evil racialist cabal meeting in secret to Put The Black Man Down or w/e, because it is inconceivable that others will not think about one's skin tone as much as one does ones self. It is not possible e.g. that anyone paler spends any less time obsessing about race - nor might be comfortable in their own skin. The fact that it is totally ridiculous for a typical middle-class white Kansan to spend as much time thinking about, say, The Hispanic Menace as a Hispanic man might of Hispanic cultural issues is of no object.

It's one of any number of variations of the poisonous main symptom of a closed leftist mind. "People I disagree with are evil me". It is impossible for another to have different worldview, different priorities, different understandings, or even different knowledge - all one's own opinions are the recognized fact acknowledged by all, and only an insane person will attempt to deny and undermine, through some projected version of one's own vices. How easily the demonization follows all this is left as an exercise - few people are capable of hating anyone as much as themselves.

It's often quite impossible to unwind this, as well - how easy is it ever to tell someone that they don't matter, at least to others? That others don't think about them - or even notice them or care? Ego demands that one faces struggles because one is Radically Important, and the imputed jealousy fills in the gaps...

APL

...but at most merely noticing someone who looks a little out of the ordinary.

But if you actually read the article, she calls up her mentors and they readily agree to go out kayaking with her and others - almost spur of the moment, not usually indicative of shunning. The telling part of the story is when she describes balking at going down one set of rapids. Karl and Joey paddled to the next rapid while the rest of us, the younger, newer paddlers, watched and cheered each other on. We finished up and followed our mentors’ leads. But the author doesn't want to do what everyone else is doing - following the mentors leads, cheering, pushing to herself to build confidence and ability. So yes, after 2 years she still feels very ill at ease and runs into trouble in one of the rapid sections. But the issues don't appear remotely related to any "half Filipina" or "woman of color". In fact the overall gist of the article seems to be that the author overestimated her ability and confidence but if there were more kayakers of color, easier kayaking runs would be performed. OK, but maybe you just need to stay with more beginner groups suited to your ability. Sort of like more traditional "running groups" - you need to join one that actually matches your running level, and you may have to try several before you find a good fit. Pantone shades haves little to do with this.

Darleen

Sadly, the Los Angeles Times is paywalled,

Here's the archive link for the article.

And damnation, all the "outdoors for healing" and "long time oppression keeping [victim group de jour] from the outdoors" ... I want to scream. WTF are they talking about vis a vis So Calif?

Probably the #1 conduit to learning at a young age about hiking and camping in So Cal was the Scouting programs. Of course, that means adults in their own neighborhoods have to step up and form troops. Wypipo are responsible for "BIPOC" adults eschewing Scouting for their own kids?

And the idea that Latinos don't go to the outdoors is ridiculous ... try hiking in hills north of Azusa or staying in any of the campgrounds there while "white".

Of course (back to scouting again) many of the BIPOC flatlanders who run up to the local mountains, especially any time it snows, have NO CLUE on how to behave in the wilderness. The amount of damage and trash they leave behind is ridiculous and something that idiot writers like Victoria Hernandez will never address.

pst314

have NO CLUE on how to behave in the wilderness. The amount of damage and trash they leave behind

Ouch. My own personal knowledge is extremely limited, dating back to when I was in Scouting and encountered badly behaved affirmative action campers.

Darleen

And on the subject of “diversity” in hiking, we’ve been here before, of course.

More than once.

Me, too.

David

“long time oppression keeping [victim group de jour] from the outdoors”

The question-begging and unearned assertions appear to be obligatory. And somehow this has become the default explanation for this inflated micro-woe. Whether in the States or over here, it’s the same template.

pst314

Me, too.

From the linked comment: "...we gave up on hiking an area of the San Gabriel Mountains ...where one of the lower areas...is clogged with people swimming, leaving dirty diapers, beer cans and piles of trash next to the water. Vast majority of them "Latino" from down the mountain, who don't have the first clue of how to behave in the wilderness (minimally, you take out what you bring in)..."

Darleen, have you read Victor Davis Hanson's accounts of the trash and unlawful behavior around his farm?

Captain Nemo

Since this is an open thread, may I present one of the most cretinous and illogical things I've read this year:

https://twitter.com/Clayburn/status/1371268469145079809

JuliaM

@Captain Nemo: great wedding vows! ‘Do you take this minority sex servant...’ 😂

Captain Nemo

And in the event the above gets deleted, here's a screengrab:

https://twitter.com/lporiginalg/status/1371482154090295296/photo/1

David

may I present one of the most cretinous and illogical things I’ve read this year

So you shouldn’t assume someone isn’t racist just because they own a minority sex servant.

Or has a wife, as the rest of us might say. I mean, those of us who aren’t racial fetishists and, by the sound of it, projecting wildly.

Darleen

have you read Victor Davis Hanson's accounts of the trash and unlawful behavior around his farm?

Oh yes I have. Two things happening ... one is cultural where the dumpers have no conscience about their behavior and, two, governmental where the local enforcement policies are driven by $$ .. they know they won't be getting the fines from the citations as opposed to busting homeowners & businesses for actual trivial stuff so they don't bother.

A lot of firefighters, first responders and even law enforcement live in the mountain communities of Wrightwood, Running Springs and Big Bear and they've come to dread snow because of the invasion of people who just trash their communities including ignoring fences around private properties because "the snow belongs to everyone!"

WTP

most cretinous and illogical things I've read this year:

I have a hard time following Twitter replies and such. I just don't get the formatting. Thus when I read replies to tweets, unless the context is clear I have a hard time figuring out if the harsher replies are to the original post (Amber in this case) or to the first responder (this Clayburn guy). I presume the latter but given the degree of stupidity in this world it gets harder and harder to determine who is criticizing whom, whether someone is being sarcastic, what the parody is parodying, etc. Pile on top of that how people are increasingly change the meaning of words to mean their opposite (looking at you, Dictionary.com)...

Darleen

So you shouldn’t assume someone isn’t racist just because they own a minority sex servant

Sci-fi author Brad Torgersen had the same accusations flung at him during the Sad Puppies affair.

pst314

...may I present one of the most cretinous and illogical things I've read this year

You mean "this year so far ." ;-)

Lady Cutekitten of Lolcat

Drama queens gonna drama.

John Lewis

He’s not very good at this being a racist business is he?

Darleen

Heh.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

...most cretinous and illogical things I've read this year...

Later down that thread, we meet someone who hasn't been paying attention, and she has way too much company.

Daniel Ream

I have become convinced that what fuels a very large number of Angry Studies types is a very potent blend of paranoia and sollipsism

It's simpler than that: they're children. Emotionally, anyway. Children think the world revolves around them until well into late adolescence. (This is why trauma affects them so deeply; since to the child everything is about them, the trauma must have been their fault or because of something they did.)

Angry Studies majors have been coddled their entire life and denied the necessary life experiences to see the world as a larger entity independent of their own actions, needs and desires. If they're discomfited at all or suffer any unpleasantness, it must be due to the deliberate actions of someone else targeting them specifically.

They're children. Treat them appropriately.

Captain Nemo

Or has a wife, as the rest of us might say.

Quite. Still, minority sex servant is a great band name.

TomJ
Or has a wife, as the rest of us might say.

Apologies if I've missed someone else posting it, but the wife in question's response is rather splendid.

Daniel Ream

don’t “feel comfortable,” then it seems to me they’re not really trying and are basically making excuses

Perhaps this is salient: in the tabletop gaming hobby, "gatekeeping" (intentionally excluding certain types of people from the hobby) has been a terrible sin for decades. Originally this was driven by the usual handwringing about getting more women into the hobby, a fool's errand anyway because women don't want to play D&D or Warhammer 40K as it turns out.

Well, we've had about a decade or so of pandering to various identity groups in the hobby, and there's a very rapidly growing "we need to bring back gatekeeping" movement. No women, no blue-haired freaks of indeterminate gender, no race hustlers, no one who isn't a straight white man.

It perturbs me. Some of my best gaming buddies are varying shades of brown and are as PO'ed by left-wing identity politics as anyone (Ajay owns more guns than I do, ffs). But here we are.

Sporkatus

It's simpler than that: they're children.

I don't think we disagree. That is certainly the core of their beliefs, their worldview. "I am the world, and the world is me and my concerns". A child's sollipsism and not an adult variety.

I was proposing a further sort of crippling of reason extending from that - for those who spend time "thinking" - in how the model allows rationalizing of the acts of others. When the subject should *know* intellectually that acts have nothing to do with them, but need an explanation otherwise to comport to the belief it really is still all about them. "That person has done a thing that I don't understand, therefore it must be explained in terms of what I'd do if I were them - *and evil*."

Compare Obama's childish sin-as-in-conflict-with-my-values remarks.

in the tabletop gaming hobby, "gatekeeping"

Gatekeeping is a looming threat of pernicious control that has loomed over tabletop for time immemorial, but always ends up descending on other hobbies instead.

My mother, a very introverted person, engaged briefly with d&d at the end of the '70s while it was still in packet form but didn't stay with it. If it didn't actively keep her out then, how could it be said to keep anyone out since? Rather, it's been more a thing of the hobby's Pure Autist Energy and the boredom that often follows it. Why must it be more anguished in welcoming women than model railroading?

TomJ
Or has a wife, as the rest of us might say.

Apologies if I've missed someone else posting it, but the wife in question's response is rather splendid.

Cloudbuster

Perhaps this is salient: in the tabletop gaming hobby, "gatekeeping" (intentionally excluding certain types of people from the hobby) has been a terrible sin for decades. Originally this was driven by the usual handwringing about getting more women into the hobby, a fool's errand anyway because women don't want to play D&D or Warhammer 40K as it turns out.

I was in a tabletop gaming group that ran an ongoing campaign for, oh, six or seven years. It was heavy on couples -- both husbands and wives playing, although my wife didn't play (just wasn't into it). About half the players were female. We'd rotate among different houses once a month, and we also had a play-by-email campaign going on. For a while a black guy joined the group. He was a work friend of one of the regulars, but it was weird because the guy was really quiet. He would literally go a several hour session without ever saying an extraneous word beyond what was needed to direct his character in combat. Now, this was a group where we were all joking and talking constantly -- it was a social occasion as much as it was a game. It was very hard to become friends with a guy who won't talk. Then at some point he stopped coming. I don't know why. Nobody wanted to exclude him. Maybe he felt excluded, though. Maybe he went on to write essays about Whiteness in Gaming.

Daniel Ream

Why must it be more anguished in welcoming women than model railroading

Is that a rhetorical question?

Because D&D is almost entirely played by hormonal teenage boys (or hormonal adult boys...) who are desperate for female attention. Model railroading (or historical miniatures wargaming, the precursor to D&D) is mostly played by middle-aged men who have no overriding drive to pursue women.

Daniel Ream

He would literally go a several hour session without ever saying an extraneous word beyond what was needed to direct his character in combat

There are as many ways to play TTRPGs and motivations for playing as there are players. The guys over at Fear the Boot like to tell a story about a D&D group they encountered that seemed to think the entire game was a kind of endurance-mode video game level: they would literally open the Monstrous Compendium to 'A', and say "Round One: Aaarakocra!" then roll for number appearing and fight until they defeated the aarakocra or got TPKed, then roll for whatever was next in the book in alphabetical order, etc., etc. That was "D&D" to them.

So perhaps he was simply looking for a different experience. I frankly can't understand people who unironically play Adventure Paths, but they sell quite well.

David

As so often, I understand barely half of what goes on here.

Sporkatus

Is that a rhetorical question?

Perhaps not entirely, but since the topic has been raised re: age, I'll offer rumination. Despite the difference in age group and perhaps aspiration, both are extremely bookish pursuits adjacent to feminine topics of interest (fan-fiction and dollhouse-making, for two) while having enough detail to allow highly focused typically-male digression (the comparison of 3.5 BAB progressions from 1 to 1/2 and effects on multiclassing a gish build, the Whyte descriptions of common locomotive types, etc. etc.). It's not immediately clear that either *shouldn't* have women interested, but the long-term tendencies are hard to ignore.

D&D allows a social outlet of sorts for the painfully shy that railroading doesn't, admitted, but assuming it would ever be a target-rich environment for dating might be called the real fantasy taking place. Although, as a pre-filter for a suitably nerdy mate, perhaps...

The thrust of my comparison was that the outcome in sex ratio might be guessed from afar to be similar due to proclivities - it's the expectation for d&d that's unrealistic. Hence the agony in one and not the other, I suppose. "We never have enough girls at game night! We must be keeping them away somehow!"

Daniel Ream

I understand barely half of what goes on here

[ glares through gate ]

David

[ glares through gate ]

My level-9 raiding missions in Hades’ Star seem almost respectable.

Daniel Ream

It's not immediately clear that either *shouldn't* have women interested

D&D's three biggest literary influences are The Lord of the Rings, Conan, and The Dying Earth. I think you'll find a similarly-skewed sex ratio among readers of those works.

D&D started out as a way of personalizing the individual models in medieval skirmish wargames - toy soldiers, effectively. I think you'll find a similarly-skewed sex ratio among players of those games.

D&D 3.0/3.5 character "builds" were intentionally designed as a mathematical puzzle that could be "solved". I think you'll find a similarly-skewed sex ratio among people who enjoy those puzzles.

Women, as a general rule, are less likely to enjoy fiddly detailed simulations that require tedious repetition to converge on a useful result and mastery of an esoteric corpus. This is also why there aren't as many female scientists.

Uma Thurmond's Feet

"Perhaps this is salient: in the tabletop gaming hobby, "gatekeeping" (intentionally excluding certain types of people from the hobby) has been a terrible sin for decades."

I must be missing something, which is quite possible. I used to play wargames before moving into D&D after seeing Gary Gygax run a campaign at an Origins convention. I played in other's worlds and had one of my own, and we had a circle of friends that we played with. Sometimes women played, usually they came in through our connections with the Society for Creative Anachronism. If there was any "gatekeeping," it was more along the lines of "is this person right for our group" rather than "are they a certain type."

I could see the problem if there was a college club organized around the games, but my sole experiences revolved around friendship as a criteria for joining in.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Speaking of comic books, Ace points us to something sure to revive a dying "industry".

Sporkatus

Women, as a general rule, are less likely to enjoy fiddly detailed simulations that require tedious repetition to converge

Quite so.

I was suggesting that an attraction one might suppose on a facile level "women like renn faires and downton abbey!" or "women like decorating dollhouses!" belies that (possibly misdirected at times) intensity required for building a 5 foot long HO railway siding with little bits of moss and plants along the way, or the careful choice of deity for the right domain spells in one's cleric.

The end result of expecting women to like to optimize their wizard's spellbook as much as a guy is disappointment - and probably worse among those whose "gifts" render them unable to realize what is and isn't a normal level of interest intensity.

"DM's girlfriend" remains a well-worn trope due largely to the "other reason for being there than the sheer spergery" aspect. It's not that anyone is keeping the gate, it's that the room beyond the gate is full of textbooks and cheeto dust.

Cloudbuster

Because D&D is almost entirely played by hormonal teenage boys (or hormonal adult boys...) who are desperate for female attention. Model railroading (or historical miniatures wargaming, the precursor to D&D) is mostly played by middle-aged men who have no overriding drive to pursue women.

I think is a fallacious stereotype. I've played tabletop RPGs (ironically rarely D^&D) since college and the life profiles of the players changed as appropriate to people of their age. It is still generally male-weighted, but not by too much. The campaign I'm in right now is all male, but most of us are married with kids. The wife of one of the players plays with him in a different campaign. Previous campaigns have been mixed sex, but with the majority tending male. What I have noticed is that it is a very White thing. My previous post is my only firm example of encountering a Black in an rpg (There's a guy in my current campaign who's racially ambiguous. I swear, I've been acquainted with him for about 20 years and I still don't know if he's mulatto or middle eastern or what! His presented behavior, if you never saw his face is "White nerd."). I've had a couple Asian girls in either D&D or LARP games I've been involved in. I think they like the cosplay (for the LARPS).

Daniel Ream

I must be missing something, which is quite possible

I should have mentioned that it's debatable how much gatekeeping ever actually occurred, outside individual groups. I know one woman who described a D&D group in her high school she wanted to join who were exceptionally strict about who they accepted, but that seemed to have more to do with requiring everyone to dress up as their character, speak entirely in character for the entire session, and learn a small encyclopedia of lore before playing.

It's essentially impossible to say that anything is typical of people who play TTRPGS because the vast, vast majority of the hobby happens in private among groups of friends who don't really follow "the hobby". People who write fanzines aren't typical, people who go to cons aren't typical, people who go to organized play events aren't typical, people who post online or stream their D&D sessions aren't typical.

I do think that people who do do all of those things are mostly interacting with other people who do those things and as a result are likely to mistake those people as typical. Hence the disconnect between gamers who claim orcs are racist and that the hobby discriminates against women, and the gamers who are befuddled by such claims.

Daniel Ream

it's that the room beyond the gate is full of textbooks and cheeto dust

The indie RPG scene is doing great work to present game designs that eschew fiddly number-crunching in favour of generating relationship drama, and that scene is at a wild guess about 25% women designers and maybe 40% women playing (these numbers exclude men pretending to be women for woke cred).

I know of absolutely no female D&D players who obsess over character builds the way the average 3.x player does, but I know plenty who will obsess over making in-setting food and bringing it to the session, or crocheting dice bags, etc. The majority of the kitschy Etsy gamer accessories are made and sold by women.

I think is a fallacious stereotype

I'm being somewhat hyperbolic here. There are certainly vastly more women playing D&D now as we've had about two decades of D&D references being part and parcel of mainstream popular entertainment. My experience is that a lot more women will try playing D&D for a session or two, and not just as "DM's girlfriend" or whatever, but only the same proportion of women will stick with it as has always been the case. Female DMs are still as rare as hen's teeth.

Again, indie RPGs are the exception here, where there are a lot more female GMs.

Sam

[ checks comments ]

NERDZ!!

[ resumes anime while cleaning WWII rifles ]

Daniel Ream

NERDZ!!

Well.....you're not wrong.

Richard Cranium

Looks at copies of Twilight In the East (https://www.boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/21779/1914-twilight-east) and 1914, Offensive à outrance (https://www.boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/46669/1914-offensive-outrance) on my bookshelf.

I even playtested https://www.boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/4207/kharkov-soviet-spring-offensive with a classmate of mine oh so many years ago.

pst314

I even playtested https://www.boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/4207/kharkov-soviet-spring-offensive with a classmate of mine oh so many years ago.

I remember that! Sold all my AH and SPI games and magazines as I haven't played them in many many years (not enough of a nerd?)

ComputerLabRat

The indie RPG scene is doing great work to present game designs that eschew fiddly number-crunching in favour of generating relationship drama,

feminine topics of interest (fan-fiction and dollhouse-making, for two)

That all sounds absolutely horrifying to me, and I'm female. But that's probably one of those "exceptions that proves the rule" deals. /shrug "Typical" or "stereotypical" female stuff just bores me or gives me a screaming headache. I've found that if you go into the male-dominated job/hobby/whatnot, and take it as it is, realize the ball-busting for what it is, can laugh with them at you, and don't try to change things, you'll gain some kind of acceptance. I also realize that I'm in the minority, and that a majority of women enjoy exactly what Daniel outlines. They can have it too - I'll stick with my tomboyish, nerdy pursuits. It's a big enough world - there's room for all sorts. Or there used to be. Now, I'm not so sure.

Directrix Gazer

Female DMs are still as rare as hen's teeth.

When I found one I married her to make sure she didn't get away :D

10 years later, we've settled into a groove of alternating which of us GMs for each successive campaign our group plays.

Megaera

LabRat: worked for me too, at work (starting out all those millennia ago, my field was largely male and so was my business arena) and elsewhere. I got into canoes and kayaks, plus hiking, some time back and my experience across the board was that people in all those activities were helpful, patient and friendly. So I strove to be likewise, and it seemed to have worked well enough.

David

There’s a very rapidly growing “we need to bring back gatekeeping” movement. No women, no blue-haired freaks of indeterminate gender, no race hustlers,

I know practically nothing about the games in question or their demographics, but it isn’t surprising to hear of disaffection and pushback, given the broader annexing of cultural niches by woke-lings. From comic books and Doctor Who to knitting groups, the results have not generally been glorious. Sort of, “You have to let me join your Stupid Little Club so that I can rapidly transform it into something you can’t abide.”

Richard Cranium

@pst314, the Wargames Committee of the Military Affairs Club of West Point back in those rather ancient times almost always had someone playing https://www.boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/2802/war-europe in the club room. (I remember one conversation after glancing at the map: "Oh, wow; is this the end of 1944?" "No, we kinda screwed up the Russian Campaign; it's mid-1943.")

My very first issue of S&T was the one with https://www.boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/7051/kampfpanzer-armored-combat-1937-40. My last issue was the one with https://www.boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/8324/china-war-sino-soviet-conflict-1980s.

If you are still interested in that sort of thing, then perhaps either http://www.vassalengine.org/ or https://www.spigames.net/ could provide something useful.

NERDZ

I guess you can argue that D&D has little to do with what has happened and with what might happen.

Wargames can (and should) have a lot to do with the past and future.

Richard Cranium

@pst314, now that I've thought about it, IIRC the screwed up invasion of Russia that I saw over 40 years ago on the map was in mid-1942. The Axis counters on the eastern front were contiguous and stacked to the max, but so were the Soviet counters; the latter had another row of counters that were contiguous and stacked to the max behind the front lined.

David

Regarding the intrusion of wokeness into pre-existing worlds, an example comes to mind. I thought I’d type it out before I forget. It’s fairly mild, but still telling, I think.

At the end of Avengers: Endgame, an old Steve Rogers passes his shield, and by implication the mantle of Captain America, to Sam, not Bucky. This is clearly intended to be a stirring and important gesture, regarding race and whatever. But it feels contrived, somewhat out of character, and - as yet – it doesn’t quite work. And part of the reason is that it jars with in-universe logic. Sam’s skillset doesn’t really suit throwing around a vibranium shield. And the wings of his flying rig are already used as a shield – it’s one of his signature party tricks. The second shield seems superfluous, incongruous.

Also, in-universe, the shield-hurling isn’t just a matter of practice; it requires superhuman strength and coordination, which Sam doesn’t have. But Bucky does, being intended as a duplicate of Rogers, power-wise. We’ve seen Bucky use the shield quite effectively. But hey, two white males. And so, for the sake of a political gesture, suspension of disbelief is somewhat undermined. The in-universe rules are broken. It’s possible, of course, that the writers of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier may acknowledge this in the forthcoming TV series. But the heavy-handed politics has created a problem that now has to be fudged or explained away.

Assuming, that is, that the series doesn’t insert more racial politics in a similarly awkward fashion.

David

Also, nerd!

Karl

Late to the party, I know but:
Has no one ever heard of being a trailblazer?

I have.
Have they?

David

Have they?

Is she from a planet with heavy gravity?

WTP

She is a planet with heavy gravity. It's her superpower.

pst314

@pst314, the Wargames Committee of the Military Affairs Club of West Point back in those rather ancient times almost always had someone playing...

Do you know about this from personal experience? I knew an avid player who graduated West Point in the mid 70's. We played various SPI and AH games when in high school together where he was a far better player than me and deeply interested in matters of strategy and tactics.

...if you are still interested in that sort of thing, then perhaps either...

Thanks, but I only sold all my games recently when I finally faced up to the fact that I wasn't going to play them anymore--and really needed to clean house lest my heirs throw them in the trash.

pst314

Wargames can (and should) have a lot to do with the past and future.

Learned a lot from playing those games and from reading the articles in S&T.

pst314

She is a planet with heavy gravity. It's her superpower.

She's so dense, light bends around her?

Karl

It's her superpower.

Akshually she possess a magic backpack bequeathed to her byOH MY GOD SHUT UP! 😃

David

Akshually she possess a magic backpack bequeathed to her by

No, no, she was exposed to some kind of head-shrinking atomic radiation. Clearly.

Maybe that’s her superpower. In moments of crisis, she can reduce the size of her head, but not her body, by 28%. Just enough to look odd. As superpowers go, it is, admittedly, a little niche.

pst314

"...D&D is almost entirely played by hormonal teenage boys..."

Yes, as best I recall most (but not all!) of the D&D players I knew in the 70's and 80's were indeed young males--although I didn't play so my knowledge might be unreliable, having only met the ones who showed up at the same social events as me. I do retain the impression that the females were more often playing other games albeit just as nerdy ones.

"...historical miniatures wargaming...is mostly played by middle-aged men who have no overriding drive to pursue women."

I'll take your word for that, and do get the impression that they are now relics of the past. But how about the situation a few generations ago, before the advent of all those board games? I have read about a few groups of young men who wargamed with miniatures back in the 30's and 40's.

Megaera

David -- as far as Avengers is concerned I suspect there's no question about "if" regarding injection of gratuitous racial issues, just a matter of when and how. Witness Muldoon's conspicuously-tormented Filipina kayaker and her aggressive trashing of people she insisted were her Friends and mentors. I reread her little screed and found it just as bizarre the second time as the first. Consider the photos with it, which are pretty typical for a cool-weather whitewater jaunt: think you could look at any of those boaters and (except for extreme size and musculature) venture a reliable guess as to the sex of any of them, let alone ethnicity such that you might profess shock/horror at the contamination of the Lower James' previous racial purity by the participation in group of a (gasp) FILIPINA interloper? I promise you I couldn't, and I've been boating for a long, long time. Bodies are covered throat to toe with shapeless drysuits, heads with completely unsexy -- not to mention non-ethnic -- helmets, hands are gloved ... shoot, you can barely tell there's people in those getups, let alone distinguishing at long distance the national origin of someone whose name certainly doesn't evoke resonances of a Pacific island group (sounded more Greek than anything else to me) and whose photo didn't exactly scream her ethnicity either. There were multiple anomalies in her wail, but that circumstance really stood out.

Daniel Ream

Akshually she possess a magic backpack bequeathed to her by

No, no, she was exposed to some kind of head-shrinking atomic radiation. Clearly.

An experimental Internet gas, actually.

I swear I am not making that up.

“You have to let me join your Stupid Little Club so that I can rapidly transform it into something you can’t abide.”

Oh no!

The second shield seems superfluous, incongruous

I have heard uncomfirmed (and unconfirmable) rumours that it was a last minute retcon. Sebastian Stan was signed for a three picture deal when he was cast, and the plan (allegedly) was for him to take over the shield and extend the Captain America franchise. His rather shoe-horned-in appearances in subsequent Avengers movies fulfilled the contract terms without having to give him a lead role.

Marvel has teased a ton of legacy heroes, from Spider-Man to Cassie Lang to Captain America II or III. I doubt they can pull that off; such characters have never been able to capture mindshare.

David

as far as Avengers is concerned I suspect there’s no question about “if” regarding injection of gratuitous racial issues, just a matter of when and how.

Mr Feige, the Big Marvel Cheese, has been making some drearily woke noises of late. And when these things are injected into what should be an escapist fantasy, two hours of sugary fun, they’re usually done in such a cack-handed way that it disrupts the illusion. When I buy an IMAX ticket and tie up half the day to travel across town to the local multiplex, I don’t do it to be reminded of the real world, or the weirdly dogmatic preoccupations of leftist writers.

David

Oh no!

Heh. Yes, quite.

I have heard unconfirmed (and unconfirmable) rumours that it was a last minute retcon.

Endgame was on the whole a disappointment, badly paced, and frequently boring, and that scene just felt… off. The political gesture trumped the in-universe logic, breaking the spell.

Trashfire HTML corrected, by the way.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Her “magic backpack” is actually a pocket dimension with seemingly infinite space, from which she can pull out useful or random objects...

Snacks, blood glucose meter, portable O2 concentrator, mini-fridge for insulin...

pst314

An experimental Internet gas, actually.

Remember when some New Age charlatan promised to deliver homeopathic doses via the internet? (Not sure how people thought substances were supposed to be transported in Ethernet packets, but it is technically true that an Ethernet packet can carry zero molecules of anything you wish.)

John Lewis

The last 18 hours on here has been ......... interesting.

David

The last 18 hours on here has been ......... interesting.

Is it everything you dreamed it would be?

John Lewis

Well I have been having some pretty strange dreams lately.

Daniel Ream

Mr Feige, the Big Marvel Cheese, has been making some drearily woke noises of late.

I seem to recall he's essentially withdrawn from the MCU post-Endgame. I think he's a canny office politician; he's seen that the incoming agenda cannot be deflected or stopped, he's completed his magnum opus, and now he's mouthing the right platitudes so he can maintain his position while enjoying his multi-story jewel-encrusted gold mansion.

In the 1990s, when Star Wars was a thing most people had forgotten about, George Lucas said that he didn't see himself as a director but as a filmmaker. His goal, he claimed, was to advance the state of the art of filmmaking to the point that anyone with $30,000 and a garage could make a feature film.

I think technology is well beyond that point now, and the market is prime for someone to do exactly what Lucas did with Star Wars - produce an entertaining film that anyone and everyone can enjoy and distribute it outside the regular channels.

If Disney won't do the Indiana Jones reboot with Chris Pratt, perhaps some enterprising young director can take a stab at it.

Uma Thurmond's Feet

Nice to see people chime in with AH and SPI memories. I had built up quite a collection of games since I started playing in the '70s, including the original homemade Trafalgar game that I (sob) subsequently sold. I moved into D&D and built up quite a library of material there, including products from Flying Buffalo, Judges Guild, and even started contributing material to the DragonQuest line from SPI before the company imploded. I was even into alternative comic books, buying everything from undergrounds, black and white indies, and even a few Marvel and DCs when they were worth buying.

Weird to be looking back at that and wondering where that person went.

Jacob

When I buy an IMAX ticket and tie up half the day to travel across town to the local multiplex, I don’t do it to be reminded of the real world, or the weirdly dogmatic preoccupations of leftist writers.

That.

Karl

And when these things are injected into what should be an escapist fantasy ... they’re usually done in such a cack-handed way that it disrupts the illusion.

I found myself considering how it is that many creators of books, plays or films manage to imbue their oeuvre with a clear set of moral principles without becoming preachy or hectoring. I've come to the conclusion that it's because they aren't hateful cunts, who lack the talent necessary to conceal that fact from their audience.
Cough Brie Larson cough.

Richard Cranium

Do you know about this from personal experience? I knew an avid player who graduated West Point in the mid 70's.

@pst314, I graduated from there in 1980, so odds are likely that I missed the guy you knew. The class of 1977 were firsties (AKA seniors) when I was a beanhead (AKA plebe AKA freshman).

There was almost always some team of people playing War in Europe while I was there; I'll admit that I didn't join the club until I was a yearling (AKA sophomore). There was another time (different run of the game) when I saw that the Axis player had pushed the Soviets to within a few hex rows of the eastern map edge. It turns out that the Axis player(s) had misplaced an errata page that reduced the Axis ability to extend the rail network in Russia.

FWIW, juniors were called cows. That terminology has probably changed by now, even though it pre-dated the arrival of women (which happened in my class).

David

Cough Brie Larson cough.

Heh. Again, quite. But the woke ham-fistedness is quite extraordinary, even among people who are otherwise quite deft at their trade. You could, for instance, compare the all-girl fight scene in Infinity War, in which Natasha, Wanda and Okoye face-off against Proxima Midnight - and which is fun and doesn’t feel contrived or gender-gratuitous - and the overtly feminist all-girl line-up shot at the end of Endgame, made by the same directors, and which very much does feel gratuitous, and cringeworthy, and which prompted mocking laughter. Not, I suspect, the intended effect.

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