Unexpected Geekery

In retrospect, given the engineering crossover I shouldn’t have been surprised, but a random conversation with our regular visiting electrician at work took a very welcome sidetrip today.

I’d logged a call about a flickering light the other day, and he’d been sent to deal with it. He mentioned in passing that our lighting tubes aren’t fluorescent any more but are actually LED strips made to look like the old tubes so they work in the old fittings.

I was curious about this, especially from all the posts I’ve seen and conversations I’ve had with fellow cosplayers who fit and use LEDs in their costumes and props so he starting demonstrating how they’re constructed – at which point I mentioned the similarity to the old Force FX lightsabers that I’ve still got knocking around in the flat.

At which point he asked if, back in the day, I ever played Star Wars Galaxies. Well actually yes I did – a lot – it was a huge favourite, at least before the developers tried to turn it into a retread of World of Warcraft and introduced Jedis. So we got talking about how we’d played, and how I’d specialised in crafting fashions and vehicles and everything in between in the Guild – how the huge open sandbox of it all meant you could just go and use it as a social space and find that just as rewarding as doing any missions.

This then, in front of my bemused staff, turned into a long debate about the relative benefits of multiplayer and single player games, and the role that mindlessly shooting things after work just allows you to reduce your worries and attention spans to simple goals and elements so as not to carry on the frustrations of the day.

And then we looked round and remembered we were both meant to be working, laughed, and got on with things. A nice moment of connection and a reinforcement that the semi-casual way I play is not unusual amid the routines of living as an adult (or at least aspiring to appear to be one).

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