I like to let my geek flag fly high and free. Talk to me for ten minutes and chances are that gaming will enter the conversation. That might have something to do with my status as a comic writer / game designer / aspiring academic, but it might be a generational thing as well.

I think I’ve mentioned it before, but one of my gaming groups is Laurel’s dad’s group. These are the gamers that had to live through the satanic panic. They cut their teeth on polyhedral dice when “geek is chic” was most decidedly not a popular phrase. I can’t imagine what that must have been like, but I am thankful that Chick tracts and bizarre 700 club PSAs are artifacts of a distant past. That said, this hobby of ours still isn’t exactly mainstream.

Today’s comic is based off of a work experience I had. I was enjoying a personal call in the break room, describing my campaign to an old college buddy who’d called out of the blue. I don’t remember exactly what was said, but my coworkers took away a few select phrases. Among them were “in my basement,” “torture victims,” and “a bunch of demons.” That took some explaining afterwards.

That particular example may be extreme, but I’m willing to bet every one of us has had to explain roleplaying to a bewildered friend or family member. “No, it isn’t a cult. No, we don’t hit each other with fake swords. No, I’ve never shouted lighting bolt while pelting my buddies with beanbags.”

How about it? Have you ever had a difficult time explaining this hobby of ours to the uninitiated? Any comical misunderstandings to divulge? Tell us your tale in the comments!


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