Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Words With Friends (With A Side Of Nausea)

When I was in kindergarten, there was a book fair at my school. I, being the huge dork that I am, begged my mom to buy me a dictionary. A dictionary. Just what every 5 year old asks for, right? Well, my mom said no at the time and I accepted that. She was proud because I didn't throw a fit in front of my teacher and my classmates upon hearing her "no" so she later went back and bought the dictionary for me. I remember being so surprised when I opened it for my birthday! While other kids wanted pet rocks, Weebles, or Stretch Armstrong dolls (What can I say? It was 1975,) I was happy with my book filled with all of those words and meanings. All those words!

Fast forward to December of 2009 when I discovered Words With Friends, a phone app that lets you play a Scrabble-like game with friends or random opponents. How awesome is that, right? Scrabble at my fingertips anytime, anywhere, and other people willing to play with me!

When I first started playing, next to my name, there was a little yellow tile with an M on it. M for mom2my6pack which was  my username. I played against 3 or 4 people and it usually took me about a week to finish a game because both my opponent and I would play pretty slowly, taking only a couple turns a day. 

This summer, however, I realized I could upload an actual picture for the little icon next to my name. I used this one. In changing my picture, I inadvertently did a social experiment. 

If you aren't familiar, at the top of the app there's a row of pictures that denote opponents you can challenge to a game. Every day since I changed that picture about a month ago, I have received a couple game requests to the point that I now have 35 games going! I went for EIGHT YEARS with maybe 3 or 4 games going with the same couple opponents at any given time to 35 different games overnight. Would you like to know how many of those 35 games were started by guys? THIRTY-THREE! 

The game also has a chat option so you can talk to your opponent as you play. In the past my conversations have included phrases like these:

Nice move.

Good job.
Thank you!
Ugh, I have all vowels!
Good game!
Want to play again?

Occasionally, the conversations got more in depth like this:

How's it going?
What's the weather like there?
Having a nice weekend?
I'm fine.

But since changing my picture, the conversations have run along different lines. Now don't get me wrong, there are a couple guys (both married and single) who have completely normal, respectable, platonic chats when we play. But the overwhelming majority of these guys are under the impression that Words With Friends is a free dating site. Their conversations are about as wonderful as the messages I get on dating sites. If you want to read about how wonderful those are, check out THIS POST

Exhibit A (Names have been blocked out to protect the stupid, clueless, and generally disgusting because I'm too nice.)

Surprisingly, he resigned when I didn't engage with him.
Exhibit B (He had just gotten through telling me that he's 28, and married with a 9 month old.)

 Shockingly this guy also resigned when I didn't continue the conversation.
 Exhibit C  (It started off okay with him saying hello and asking me where I live to which he replied . . .)

And we're done here.

Exhibit D (He started by saying that judging by my profile, he anticipated a good game, but didn't . . .


Exhibit E

"Doll???" Why? Why why WHY??? Why do you people say things that will inevitably give me an eye rolling injury?

Exhibit F

I don't even know how to respond to something like this. Thankfully he resigned, sparing me the need to file a restraining order.

"Principessa, just let me see your feet! I need to draw your feet!"

What I want to know is - what on earth are these guys trying to get out of this? Do they realize how rare it is to even find someone who lives in the same state, let alone anywhere near their city? I play with opponents as far away as Australia! Are they just looking for someone with whom to trade pictures? Why do they have to bring this ridiculousness to my beloved word game? Couldn't they just find sites like FootFetishes.com or CreepyGuys.com or IHaveNothingBetterToDoThanRuinPerfectlyGoodWordGames.com?

And yes, I could change my picture back to an M. I could change it to a picture of a piece of toast. Would that avoid most of the unwanted attention? The previous 8 years of no attention would suggest the answer is yes. But why can't a person just make words, score points, and go about their day without some guy hitting on them? The anonymity of the internet makes otherwise normal people go stupid, I think. Seemingly normal adults who probably wouldn't approach a woman in public and say, Hey doll, you're hot. Want a picture of my junk? have no qualms about doing it online. It really makes me wonder about the future of society (not to mention pushes me one step closer to instituting my Cat Plan.)


S. Meyer said...

Have you ever read the book Frindle by Andrew Clements? It's a children's book, but it's also a really interesting read about the power of words.

Amy Finn said...

Long time reader of your blog but I've never commented, this post brought me out. I was just thinking the other day about how sketchy men are on WWF! I have been playing since 2009 and like you I've had the occasional creeper. Recently though they have come out of the woodwork! When the creepy messages start, I resign the game lol. Currently I am playing with a man that's married with three grown children. He genuinely just wants to play WWF and doesn't creep me out at all thank goodness. Anyway, just thought I would share my story and let you know you aren't alone in the world of creepy/sketchy WWF players.

Pattie C. said...

And that is why I don't play any of the games on-line, because of those conversations right there. They get very old, very fast. You should have sent a gnarly picture of toes to the guy with the foot fetish!

Unknown said...

I think you and I played a game once.. about 5 years ago! I didn't hit on you because I prefer men! Plus I'm married. But that picture of you really is hot! And this is coming from a woman... I love the idea of using a nice piece of toast!! Try it!

Ernie said...

I don't know if this should make me laugh or cry. Unreal!!!! People are nuts. Are you still driving Uber? How's that going?

Who's Visiting My Blog Right Now?

Home About Dawn Blog Books News & Events Press Kit Contact

Dawn Meehan 2008-. All Rights Reserved.
Site Design by Jones House Creative