Inquiring Shout is a new feature here on Aggro Junkie. After a week of not being able to come up with anything to blog about, I figured that, if I don’t have any answers, maybe it would be fun and insightful to just ask a question.
Human beings are creatures of habit. We develop rituals to get ourselves through our daily lives and, if you’re anything like me, the disruption of those rituals can wreak havoc on your day. If something gets in the way of my morning routine I tend to get anxious and end up doing things like forgetting my briefcase or my cell phone.
If you really want to see rituals in action, watch professional sports. Basketball players will usually do the same thing before every free throw. My old coach even encouraged us to develop some kind of ritual (dribble the ball a certain number of times, take a deep breath, whatever) because those rituals help your mind block out distractions and focus solely on a shot you’ve taken thousands of times in practice. The next time you watch a baseball game pay attention to what batters do between pitches, because it’s often another repetitive routine unique to the hitter (step out of the box, adjust their batting gloves or helmet, take a swing, etc). Athletes are notorious for their rituals.
Our propensity for developing rituals seems to be hardwired into our brains, and, as a result, they can leak out of our real lives and take root in Azeroth.
Back in TBC, Fater and dps-extraordinaire Nagant and I had a ritual that started as a joke but turned into a vital part of my raid prep.
When we were outside of Kara before our weekly raids, sending out invites and summoning, Nag would run up to me and feign death. The first time it happened, I targeted him and typed “/mourn.”
It soon became a running joke and then, at least for me, a ritual. Of course I knew better, but it felt like we would have a good run if we played out that little comedy sketch before we walked through the doors. I even had a keybound macro for “/mourn Nagant.”
Obviously it had no real impact on our performance or the whims of Lady RNG, but that little ritual became something of a reminder to me to pay attention to the fact that I was surrounded with a raid team full of guildies who I had run with countless times. We knew how to work together and they had my back. Like three dribbles before a free throw, it helped me clear my head and focus on going in, doing what I needed to do, and having fun with people who had gone from pixels on a screen to real friends.
So, here’s my Inquiring Shout for the week:
What are your WoW rituals?
You can talk about raids, role-playing, even the way you organize your bags or bank. The floor, or the Comments Section I suppose, is yours.