Player perspective, Warcraft, Warcraft Hunters, Warcraft Writing

Degrees of AFK

While I may not understand a lot of acronyms or abbreviations said in World of Warcraft, one I do understand well is AFK, or away from keyboard. In my life of being a mom and someone who works from home, I’m intermittently at and away from my keyboard most of the day and into the evening. When it comes to Warcraft, if it’s just me home, I’m usually at the keyboard, but otherwise I get up and down a lot to take care of my girls’ needs.

Sometimes when I’m playing Warcraft and I’m in the middle of a dungeon, battleground, or warfront, I’ll have to get up to do something unexpectedly and I’ll ask my oldest daughter to come and be my pinch hitter. She always finds this amusing because my action bars and interface are set up rather different than hers and I have addons that she doesn’t use that modify things and give alerts she’s not used to. So it might take her a while to find all the abilities she’s familiar with, but she can sub in for me on any class and probably play better than I do.

The warfront my daughter recently pinch hit for me.

Quite often in the Nya raid, I’ll have to go AFK for various things such as chasing squirrels away from my deck bird feeders, starting dinner, letting the cat out, etc. As the Twitter group takes frequent breaks during raid, this isn’t really a problem and if they move on, I’ll catch up. However, a couple weeks ago I went AFK in a most peculiar and unexpected way that was more my keyboard away from me rather than me from it.

It was the first and only time so far that the group enabled voice chat and that was mainly so people could hear instructions during the fight against Ra-den when everything is very chaotic. I was able to connect to voice chat and I could hear people giving directions but I don’t think my mic was working, or if it was, nobody responded to me. I can’t remember the last time I’ve used voice chat in Warcraft, so glitches are to be expected.

Regardless, my keyboard issues were unrelated to voice chat unless trying to use chat put some sort of curse on my desk. I had to get up quickly from my desk to help my daughter with something and I forgot to push my keyboard tray back in. I push the tray in because my chair can swivel and hit it and knock it off its track. Well, my moment of forgetfulness did far more to my keyboard tray than just knock it off its track. My chair swiveled hard enough to rip the screws that attached tray to base out and drop my keyboard unceremoniously on the floor. Mind you, they were tiny screws and the tray is made of press board but it was still unexpected and ill-timed.

When I returned to my desk and found the broken tray, I was in a bit of a panic because I knew the fight against Ra-den would be starting again very soon. I placed my wireless keyboard on the couch and sat on the floor trying to screw the tiny screws back into the press board that now had chunks missing where the screws had originally attached. I got it attached well enough to put back in the tracks and by that time, the fight had started.

Mind you, I don’t last long in that fight and me entering it late just delayed me getting squished, but I found it absurdly amusing that my keyboard tray had “jumped ship” during raid. As if N’zoth himself was saying in his usual ominous, echoing voice, “Your efforts are useless, blah, blah, blah.”

The next day, I fixed the keyboard tray more securely by flipping the press board over and screwing the track rail into the undamaged side. The keyboard tray was pirated from an old desk and not truly designed for my current desk, but it works for my needs. I can’t work, play Warcraft, or write this blog very well without it.

Needless to say, I learned my lesson and make sure to always push my keyboard tray in and protect the delicate flower that it is from my brute of a swiveling desk chair. N’zoth may drive me nuts with his endless shades of purple, minions spouting gibberish, octopus-faced people, and globs of this, that, and the other thing, but he can’t take my keyboard away from me without a fight!

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