[ed: finally publishing this after it having been on my tablet’s “local drafts” for more than a year. not sure of exact date, but seem to remember late Oct-early Nov.]
Last night I started up in a new role-playing game, my first experience with “D20 Modern,” which is like D&D set in the present or near future. The GM is a guy I know from work and Twitter; also playing are C, the GM’s wife, and a good friend of theirs.
The email Scott* sent out with info about the mileiu (sp?!) included that it’s set in 2050; which made me think: hey, I could be alive and kicking in 2050. As it happens, I’ll be 75 going on 76. With continued good health, excellent family longevity, and modern medicine, that’s still a pretty active age. (My favorite aunt and the president of the local friends of the library are both in their early 70s. I think they both have more energy than I do.) And for some reason, then I thought of Jessica Fletcher – the protagonist of the old TV show Murder She Wrote. My mother watched that Every. Single. Week. (A rare exception from my early teens: a special after-hours event at the LA Zoo. I was almost a bit surprised when she picked that over her shows; Murder She Wrote came on after 60 Minutes, which as far as I know, she still watches every Sunday night.) Together with the knitting, my early-teen-years fondness for Miss Marple, and a bit of contrariness, that made up my mind about the kind of character I wanted to play. Later I added in the professional background — if not the stunted social skills — of Chloe from 24.
Over the course of last night’s adventure, I was the respectable front-person for our motley group (young dilettante; treasure hunter; and an ex-Army gnoll – we’re playing with Urban Arcana rules, which include a lot of D&D stuff) – and I made a good cover helping the treasure hunter scope out the front entrance of the bowling alley…as she walked me across the street a couple of times. At the same time, I did all the computer stuff and helped navigate to our quarry. It was fun; I think I horrified C a little bit at how “marm-ish” I could be in play-acting. (Lecturing the director of the organization we’d just joined on how poorly his receptionist passed on messages, for example.) I’m looking foward to playing again!
It occurred to me that I’ve never seen or even heard of anyone playing an old woman in D&D. I think it’s a great opportunity; either that, or a bit of a disappointment at the narrowness of presumed “heroes” in these games. I totally recommend trying it out.
* I’m in three different games at the moment and TWO of them are being run by guys named Scott. WTF?