Tuesday, March 05, 2013

On the level

There's a cooperative push and pull, that some may
see as adversarial element to the game.
What is easily smashed, leaves in its void
the opportunity to create and build.
This is me, Agent Daphnesq,
shortly after reaching L7 in 9 days, 23 hours.
Ten days into playing a game called Ingress, and I now dream Ingress, according to my dear husband.  No one could be more shocked than me.

I have plenty of stress and obligations in my life.  Real world, some seemingly gargantuan tasks (hello corporate taxes), but managed through sheer will, aggressive and fair play, to tackle playing the game in such a way that I accomplished something in the game that made me feel like a powerful monster.

How?  I'm rather shocked at some enlightening realizations that have come my way recently.

Once, I was a gaming widow; willingly and happily indulging my husband JJ as he delved into yet another rabbit hole, using his wits and imaginary braun against foes in fierce battle that translated to his static state, staring at a screen (great company that). When the most recent game took him out of his chair and away from a flickering screen, and seeking, taking, connecting all about town as Enlightenment Agent "Untranslatable", whilst learning about our city's quirky spots and history, I was intrigued.  A week ago last Saturday, I joined him down this bewildering rabbit hole called Ingress.  Our future will never be the same.  We are husband and wife, parents, and now, fellow-agents for the Enlightenment  of our tomorrows.

I now understand my husband a little more, who knew that was possible by just doing something that our two girls do so naturally?  Play.

Go play.  Play hard.  Play fair.  Just get out and move.

I am proud to be Enlightened.  I am Agent Daphnesq.


How I chose "Daphnesq" as my screen and Agent name:

My sister Leslie read me Greek myths as bedtime stories growing up.  My fave was about Daphne, a wood nymph.  She wanted to be independent* (insert colorful gender study here).  Daphne got ensnared in a my arrow's bigger than your arrow fight between Eros and Apollo.  Eros was a little sneak, and shot Daphne with a lead tipped arrow so she would be repulsed by Apollo, and he shot Apollo with a gold tipped arrow so he would be OBSESSED with Daphne.  (I argue that her independence would have had her react the same, and Apollo, horn dog that he was, would have pursued her anyway.  He chased, she ran, and it annoyed me as a kid that she cried out for help.  I mean, all that harping about independence, and she ends up being a damsel in distress?  wth?  There are various versions, one is that Gaia (who was smitted by Apollo when he took her Oracles) another is that Peneus her father the river god, rescued her by turning her into a Laurel tree.  Apollo catches her as her skin turns to bark and declares the tree sacred.  His minstrels wore laurel wreaths, victors and Cesars wore crowns of them, Olympians wear them, and our certificates and diplomas are decorated with them still, 2000 years later.

It wasn't until about 9 years ago, when I needed help, that I realized that it wasn't her weakness that had her cry out for help, but a strength.  It takes courage to ask and be willing to receive help.

That's why, Daphne is my Agent name. The esq, makes it an adjective (made up one, yes), but is also the abbreviation of my profession:  Esquire.  It was hard earned, and I never forget that I am nothing more than a glorified hourly employee and advocate for those brave enough to ask for help.

When the game stops being fun, do something novel and stop playing.  When game "trash talk" isn't received as I intend, in jest, I will shush and give you the win of besting me verbally and do something else novel - let the game decide.  It's designed by an amazing team of Google employees.

I owe special thanks to Cowgirl App! and Ingress staff for making such an amazing game that will change not just those who get out and play, but perhaps how we see our world.

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