Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Offering Help

I was reading this post from Navi earlier, and it struck a chord with me. I struggle with this a lot. I run the normal raid in my guild, and one night is an open, everyone can come night if you meet my minimum requirements. And thank goodness for guildies who don't mind doing a bit of carrying.  We take everyone, and some of the people would like to come on the slightly stricter, I need you to kinda know your shit nights but they just aren't quite there.

Our guild doesn't really have the best environment for asking for advice and getting help improving. Individually, I can approach several people with questions about their class and get helpful advice, but these people don't offer it up. And we don't encourage people to seek it out. I haven't ever been in a place that just offers up help. Even here, at vet school where most of the people love teaching, you have to go to them. And that's tough for a lot of people- especially if you view WoW as a game, something for fun, but not something to work at. I could easily turn WoW into a full time job trying to coax and coach people. Of course, what I want and what's actually best may not be the same thing.

And I know I'm part of the problem. I am supposed to be policing the group a little better, as far as who can come and who can't, and I'm not. I don't know how to tell someone they need help. I worry that I'm upsetting people. For example, we had a guildie who used to come all the time, on many alts, going as far back as coming to flex runs with me in my last guild. And one day, I told him he was welcome to bring whoever he wanted to the open night, but he needed a little more work on that particular toon before coming to the slightly stricter night (I have a hard time calling it "closed" because it really isn't). And they pretty much stopped coming. They come along later in the night, if one of their friends asks, and they're great and bring their main and help when we're struggling. And when I think about them not coming now, I feel bad. I have no idea if they don't come for personal reasons, too many raid nights, or if it is what I said. I do tend to be self-centered and think I'm the cause of everything though. I do think they talked to another player, and improved their skills with that class- but they have not brought that toon, or any other alt, to my raids. I don't know if it was since then, or if it tapered off. I didn't notice it until some weeks later. But that makes me worry about telling people I need them to improve for the harder bosses.

I have managed with some people who clearly need the work, telling them they can't come on the second night unless they improve, and offer to help. That is with classes I know a lot about (so, basically resto and feral druids). I get prickly if someone who doesn't play my class or role tells me what to do- oh if people could've heard me the day the tank tried to tell me how to heal. Or seen the look on my face. Cause, really dude? REALLY? Yeah, you better just stop there.

I may be a tad sensitive about some things...

I need a lot of improvement myself. Mostly with communicating. Rather than ask healers to call out CDs, I found an addon to track all the things. ALL OF THEM. Which, super helpful as raid leader- I know who rezzed whom in combat, and the timer left, no matter what the toon. Can track all the ring CDs and who popped it, plus all the big CDs and if I cared to several of the minor ones. Awesomely helpful addon.  Does not foster communication beyond knowing who's tranq is off CD for me to call out (often unnecessarily because my healers are usually on the ball!)

Anyways- how to foster a helpful atmosphere. Once upon a time, in a land far away, we thought about having an open vent night for questions and things... Not sure that'd work. Our vent is not very active outside of raids (another issues, but not one to be addressed here). And inside raids, I think I've pushed the "don't talk during boss fights please" hard enough that some people just don't talk. There are several "borderline" people as well- mostly ok, need some work but I don't know what and I don't have the time to dig through logs and find out.

I think I am going to have to take the time, to at least sort out the ones who need mechanics work, DPS rotation work, and a few need some behavior work. I've had, not really complaints, but comments about how annoying so-and-so is, and I don't know how to address that.

I'll set a few goals here:
I know at least 2 people I need to talk to right off the bat. I will do that.
-Look through logs, pick out those borderline people
-Decide if they need to be talked to
-Talk to the tanks and tank alternatives about swapping roles around, because that needs to be fixed.

Before I actually talk to people:
-pick one thing to talk to them about
-try to work in something good they do
-give them one thing to work on, and a way to work on it

Ok, those are the tentative goals for this raid. Let's see if I get to them by Saturday.

Thursday, October 8, 2015


Wow, it's really been over a month? Time has been flying by. A few things have changed since then. Some personal stuff went down, which added a bit of stress on top of the usual. I've begun raiding again with the heroic group, and my normal group kill Mannoroth.

On the school front: I finished Rehab and moved on to Exotics! It was fun, but pretty busy. They are called in for any exotic emergencies, so I had that a few times. One really bad night had me there til 9 dealing with a bunny who further featured her leg following surgical repair earlier in the day, then back at 11:30 til 2:30am for surgery on a bird with a prolapsed cloaca, and back in at 7 to check on the bird and bunny. Those few days were bad. Interesting, but sleep was dearly missed.

Now I'm on radiology. It's been interesting, but stressful. There's a final at the end with a tough pass rate. Here's hoping I'll be ok when I take it tomorrow. The rest of this one has been pretty simple. Study cases, take radiographs, present a few cases, leave at 5 unless you are one of the few who has to stay late or cover on call.

On the WoW front: WE FINALLY FINISHED GOLD CHALLENGE MODES, YAY! And I promptly set up another group for us to take alts. Cause I have a short memory and forget how much I hate scheduling things. Then someone offers to schedule things and I remember I am a control freak sometimes. Yeah... Anyway, on to group 2, so my monk can get a pretty weapon.

I'm raiding regularly with the heroic group again. We had a 2% wipe on Archi last night. I think we'll get it. The tiredness is making me more mellow about things like the fact we started half an hour late, went 15 minutes late, and were making some silly errors. Yay sleep deprivation! Been getting just enough to be mildly amused at everything, but not so little that I am entirely dead. On the plus side, this means I don't care so much and have been feeling more comfortable in raid. I will probably hang around as long as school will let me. Or until I don't wake up in time from post-school pre-raid naps.

The normal group is doing quite well. I still have trouble telling people they can't come, but I'm working on it. We downed Mannoroth, but it took pulling in 2 heroic raiders to help. I'm hoping the additional tier will help us, and if we still struggle I'll remove some people who are having issues. Problem is, if I base it on DPS, we have some people who are ok with mechanics and have a great attitude who are just missing the DPS their gear would suggest. Everyone meets my minimum gear requirements, and I don't feel raising them is logical or would be helpful.

It's something to work on. I've been forgetting. And my monk is the back-up tank for that group, but I'm about to drop that spec for WW. Eek! Just when I got my 4-piece too, I was looking forward to tanking. I do need the practice as windalker, so I plan to respec tonight. Which I had actually completely forgotten about until I wrote that. Whoops. I may need to heal anyway, but I'd like the option to DPS if I can.

That's the short summary of the last month. Goals for this next month:
-Finally do some work on Raiding with Leashes 3
-Study for Boards (Nov 20th, TOO SOON)
-Work on telling people they need to improve for the Sat group

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Obligatory Post About Flying!

Woo, we can fly! And new rares with new toys! And now that's out of the way, on to other things!

The next topic that's got people a-buzz: timewalkers, and their rewards! New pets! New mounts! Going to take a decently long amount of time! Luckily, my monk is now pretty permanently a tank, so I can at least get quick queues if I end up doing these solo. And that's pretty much all I have to say about that- more stuff to do. I have so much on my list of things I'd like to do, and I rarely get to any of it.

I still want to finish the Tanaan rep on my monk (my druid is set), and run old raids for pets and mounts (I have hardly even started raiding with leashes 3!), and eventually finish that archeology stuff (er, yeah, someday....), not to mention PvP gearing and achievements and all the achievements to do!

I think I may be able to set up an achievement run on Monday, for HM and possibly BRF. That would be good. I'll look into it. In fact, I'll go set that up right now. ...And done. It's on the calendar.

This post may ramble a lot. Rehab has, sometimes, a lot of sporadic downtime. Potentially a ton of downtime today. That may mean I will go and come back to this post, and break my train of thought and ramble a bit.

Today is going to be about chores: cleaning the house (the real one, I have company coming), emptying bags (the WoW ones- I hang on to all sorts of junk), and getting little things started or finished. Like the timewalker runs I need to do, and possibly getting a lockout for the normal raid tonight- haven't made up my mind yet.

On the one hand, all that trash is annoying, the first boss is so easy, and I don't think anyone needs anything. On the other hand, clearing trash gives me time to set up and people to get there. On the third hand, I start invites 15 minutes before the raid. If they get there any later than start time, they can miss a boss or walk to the instance. Well, fly now. And saving that time at the start may allow us to get further on Thursday, so we can get further on Saturday. However, some easy kills on Saturday may boost morale when we hit the inevitable wall on Tyrant. On the other hand (I'm an octopus today), I could just do what I said I was going to- and be strict, and cut people from the Sat run, so maybe we won't hit the wall there and can hit it on another boss instead.

Which leads me into: I am not used to that (telling people they can't come), and we don't have a good cut-off set up for when someone has to go. Is it too low DPS? ilevel? It's easy to cut people for not enchanting- I tell people EVERY WEEK on the calendar. And made it the MotD today so I don't feel bad kicking people. Anyway, that's a personal thing to work on- and figure out if I want to help people improve personally (or by sending them to good people of that class to talk to) of just direct them to helpful resources and tell them they need to improve to come on Sat. In theory, I completely understand the need, but I worry about hurt feelings. Anyways. I'll deal with it as needed, but:

That puts me back on square one: Trying to figure out logs for classes I only play one spec of, and don't fully understand. That may be my goal today.

And this is long and rambling enough that I may cut this off here and go do other things. Yup, other things. Possibly logs, possibly practice questions for the veterinary boards. See ya around!

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

What's been going on:

It’s been some time since I last checked in. I believe I was on neuro, which was 3 blocks ago. My life is divided up into 2 week segments at the moment. Since then, a lot has been going on.

I finished neuro, and had a lot of fun and learned a good deal. I don’t really have an interest in surgery, and neuro does  a lot of surgery. Herniated discs mostly, but occasionally brain surgeries as well. And I’m a little nervous doing anything that can leave a dog permanently paralyzed because my finger slipped. Not that they let students do the surgeries, but I did get to scrub in and observe.

After that, I had dermatology! Lots of itchy dogs and cats. Mostly it was allergy cases, and I am well versed in the allergy work-up now. The hours were great- 8-5 Monday to Friday, and 3-5 on Thursday. Can’t beat that!

I had 2 weeks of vacation after that. In the middle, my guild leader was married and I traveled to Georgia for that. It was a nice ceremony, and good to put faces to names.

And now I am back from vacation and on soft tissue surgery! (at the time I started writing this I’m done with surgery and on to rehab!) They don’t let the students actually perform surgery. Though with the cases we have, I am not too surprised- they removed a liver tumor from a dog that was as big as a normal liver should be. And my case the next surgery day involved a lot- though it was really, really cool to see the lungs inflate and the heart beating as they did the pericardiectomy. But long hours- I was there til 8 that day, after getting there at 7 am! I miss my sleep. And over the weekend, I have to be in at 6 am.
Update on surgery now that it’s done: STUPID long hours the next week, like 5am to 7pm or later on that second week. OUCH! Still catching up on sleep because silly me kept trying to raid and play with friends.

On the WoW front, things are about the same. Still running my normal run 2 nights a week. I FINALLY told someone they couldn’t come to the semi-limited night because of poor performance, and someone else because of gear. It is not something I have practice doing- this used to be the “everyone can come!” run, so now I have to keep it up. And continue to be strict. I have to decide if I am going to try to give tips to people or just tell them to do research.

And maybe have a word with the tank who wiped us because he wanted to see if he got a buff from the purple things on Fel Lord Zakuun… Really. That was not the first time we’ve done that fight.

Anyway… I got my legendary ring on my druid, and I should have one on my monk this week unless I get really unlucky. Yay!

My druid has been pawing it up as a feral in our main groups raids. It’s fun when I do better DPS than expected, and not fun because I prefer to heal. I really need to just stop going. I did not enjoy most of that raid, even when things were going well. I kinda feel like I’m no longer a part of that group- I don’t join in on the jokes, I don’t feel comfortable talking in vent. I am more relaxed in pugs. If I want to raid on my druid, I’ll pug with her. I prefer resto to feral anyway. I know absolutely how I lost my heal spot on that team, with all the uncertainty about raiding. You can’t really have a part-time healer, but it does make me sad sometimes.

Tentative plan for the week: LOTS OF SLEEP
-Hope the normal group gets to Xhul
-STOP running with the heroic group
-Do the new stuff for toys and pets and mounts!

It will be a bit less fun, since one of my friends is in the raid, and he can’t raid and do stuff with me. And I don’t want to raid steadily with that group anymore. It’ll be tough enough keeping up the normal runs with school, I don’t have the time to raid 2 extra nights a week.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Quick Recap

I mentioned a while ago that I have started my final year of school. For vet school, that’s a clinical year where everything we’ve learned is put in to practice under the supervision of interns, residents, and senior clinicians.

My first rotation was Necropsy and Pharmacology! It was very interesting. They tried to ease us in since we’re new to the school and area, and it is indeed a very light schedule compared to some of the others. We do cases in the morning, and the longest that took was 12:30, and after that we meet up at 1 to talk about drug cases. The second week the days were even shorter with no discussions in the afternoon, except a case presentation on Friday.

The cases were interesting. We’ve saw some unusual presentations on heart-based tumors- one looked just like someone had stuck a marble in the atrium of the heart, and when the resident cut it open she went “whoa!” and so did pretty much everyone else she showed it to. I’m interested to see what that came back as from histopathogy.

One morning, we worked on a snake that was found dead in its cage and turned out to have had pneumonia. Their anatomy is not so different, just elongated. It did take us a while to decide if the liver was actually the liver because the gall bladder was down with the spleen, and as it turns out the liver has some stuff going on too.

My second rotation was equine medicine. I was much busier. Students were responsible for getting the treatments done before 8 am, which mean getting there at 6:30 some mornings, and we were often there to 6. Mostly is was colics, with a few other things sprinkled in. I ended up taking a strangles case on day 1, which meant I couldn’t do anything with any of the foals that came in since strangles is highly contagious. The horse was in isolation, but still, better to be safe.

My current rotation is nuerology. I love it. We still do morning treatments here too, but so far that means getting in at 7 to have treatments done by 8. We’re usually done for the day by 5 pm. The people here have been really nice, and though I was worried at first nuero has become much simpler since we broke it down to localize the lesion to one of these 8 possible things, then go from there. There is a lot of down time, so I’ve been catching up on studying. My plan is to work on studying for dermatology, my next rotation.

On personal stuff, I’ve been working on a general and unstructured “be healthier!” plan. I’m not too sure I’d call anything a success yet. I am taking a daily walk, but I now have a dog and live next to a very nice lake, so it’s hard not to go walking with her. And Bella (my dog) is doing so well here. The lake trails are very busy, but she doesn’t bark at other people or dogs. I think she’s too focused on the squirrels and trying to decide if she can take on the geese to bark at approaching dogs.

On the WoW front:
I was without my computer for nearly a week so I took a forced break. I think I finally don’t care about raiding with my guild, yay! I have even stopped listening to the stream one of our officers does. Of course, now I have the free time to do so again. Isn’t that always how it goes?

I’m hesitant to step back in, I’m not sure I’m in a good mindset to raid with them at the moment. I am a little tired, getting used to the early mornings, which makes me a little more sensitive to criticism and more likely to be unhappy with people.  

I may do another day of the “normal” group, but the issue there is it looks like Thursday is the best day for most people. And I would really like to have an “open” day on the earlier bosses and keep bringing all the people who want to come, and then make the second night a bit more aimed at progressing. I don’t want to make it another heroic group until we’re clearing reasonably far in, at which point I may start doing something with lockouts to have a heroic night and a normal night, but i don’t know for sure yet.

I had talked my self out of doing a second night but I may have talked myself right back into it again.  Right now, 9 people have replied, but only 6 can reliably do Thursday. I keep coming up with grand plans, but a lot of them involve me doing extra things I don’t have the time for.

Anyways, the exciting news: CHALLENGE MODES! We are 4/8 gold, 8/8 silver now. And we had a pleasant surprise finishing Grimrail- REALM BEST!!! I have no idea how that works, since one person on our realm has 11 minutes and change, and there’s another group of 3 people on our realm who have us beat by 5 seconds, but yay! Whoo! /cheer! I’m still smiling about that. We knocked out UBRS silver to get the mounts. Seems the 4th boss is buggy, in CM and mythic- that fire is going all the way to the door. We’ll work on getting gold next Sunday, and if it’s still an issue we’ll just have to work around it.

Now comes all the screen shots :)

Sunday, July 12, 2015


Been a while. I'll be back with a real update later- just wanted to share we got REALM BEST on Grimrail Depot CM! The time listed for our realm's best is something like 11:09, and we got 13:35, so I was shocked. I guess because he was the only person from our realm and the rest were from Mal'ganis. But I AM SO EXCITED!!

Elaylda is no longer the salty, but the Grimrail Suplexer!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Long Break

It's been a long time since I've posted here, much less posted regularly. But I felt the urge to write a bit tonight. I wanted to share something with someone but didn't know who to talk to, so the general internet audience it is.

I raided with my guild in a heroic raid today for the first time in weeks. And I didn't have fun.

Not to say I hated it, or that I was angry or frustrated. I got loot, I was happy about that. But I felt a little out of place. I felt uncomfortable speaking in vent, like I would be judged or commented on. And I felt sad that I had lost what had been my place in that raid. I have had more fun with pugs. This just felt like something to do to pass the time.

I really appreciated being able to come along. I was able to bring my hunter, and get enough gear that I feel comfortable bringing her to my Saturday normals. I don't bring under geared toons to that because I want that run to go as smoothly as possible, and that is people's change to gear alts. But that means that my alts only get gear if I pug it or through garrison missions.

And as I was coming to this realization, my guild leader asked me if I wanted to do mythic bosses with them. Er, yeah. That threw me for a bit of a loop. Here I am, sitting at peace with no longer raiding with them, and he asks me to come back. Truthfully, I have a fluctuating schedule now. I've started my clinical (and last) year of vet school. Every two weeks, my rotation changes. This block is a nice, easy schedule. Out of there by 3 every day, done with the paperwork and homework an hour or two later. It's nice. Some are not so nice. One starts as early as 5 in the morning, and can go til 8 at night or later. And joy of joys, I get that of 6 weeks in the middle of winter, whoo!

But anyways, raiding. I told him honestly: my schedule changes, I can't promise stability in my attendance. If I am available, and they have the room and need, I may go along.

Either way, I wanted to share that with someone. I feel a bit relieved. I've been watching the raids on the streams one of our officers does. But now that I've participated in one, where things mostly went well, and not really feeling much of anything, well... I realized that I'm ok. I'm not unhappy not participating in the raids anymore.

I used to get so mad at people messing up, but now I don't care. Now that they're doing mythic, maybe I'll do a heroic run for the guild in my own time. Probably not, it's rather late in the patch to set up a new raid and I have some very specific things I'd like to go over if I were to set up anything more than a casual normal run like my Saturday ones. But perhaps.