This is the current power struggle where the gamer community is trying to wrestle the role of expert from the professional community. It seems like this is a symptom of the gaming culture; kids can play games and manipulate the virtual world, but don’t know crap about the real world. To them, everything is mouse-clicks and flashing lights and anyone who doesn’t get that is a n00b or artard. Did you ever notice that game guides are huge bestsellers? That’s because the game culture is not about discovery, it’s about being given the answer. They’ll say it’s about discovery, but how many people bypass the hard work of discovery and buy game booty with real money? Lots.
It’s a real world, virtual world problem. We (librarians) live in the real world whose relevence is diminishing every day. We don’t need to help it along.
Remember that fake Kurt Vonnegut speech about wearing sunscreen? It goes, “Read the directions, even if you don’t follow them.” Great advice. Too bad the digital natives blew that tidbit off. And fyi, video games are damn hard; I haven’t come across one yet that let me advance to the next level without finding the right key or opening the right door—video games are proof that there's often only one way to solve a problem.
Not total crap. And there was a debate about who is stupider, the under or the over 30 crowd. The kids say the old folks are dinosaurs who need to cover themselves with dirt and the old farts say that the kids are idiots who buy every hunk of plastic that Madison Avenue (or Tokyo) waves at them.
And I saw some valid points on both sides. For one, I've had a crazy life filled with drugs, sex and weeding the computer books (yes, in that order). I could use a well-earned dirt nap.
So along comes Live Free or Die Hard. And along comes John McClane to raise my weary head, brush off the dirt and show me that everything will be all right.
I don't know if you've seen this, but it's basically about an old fart, techno-dinosaur versus some hip hacker dudes. The hackers shut down all computer everything: communication, transportation, and power. And the whole country shits itself.
But what I liked, and what seems to support my opinion above, is this moment: McClane has just killed some bad guys and blowed up sumptin real good--
Matt (hacker kid): Did you see that?
McClane (hero): Yeah, I saw it. I did it.
I did it. As librarians, we do it every damn day. I don't need some kid belittling my career because I don't spend 50 hours a week modding my PS3 to play games with my iPhone. What John McClane did was to remind me that all this technology can be wiped out in a day. I can't
rely on it to get things done. But I can rely on me.
Yippee Ki Yay!