A 22-year-old woman had played a multiplayer video game for years, within which she founded a small community of 20 members. The game was designed to be social, yet there was one new neighbor or ‘camper’ whom the woman refused to engage with.
The Island Representative
Normally, newcomers interested in moving to the island would reach out to the woman’s boss to arrange their in-game housing. Her responsibility was to connect with prospective campers on other small islands, and if she found them suitable, she’d invite them to join the community.
The Campsite Idea
Things took a turn when the woman’s boss decided to establish a campsite on their island, allowing campers to inquire about building homes directly. Initially, this idea seemed promising, so the woman prepared a spot for the campsite.
A Surprise Occupancy
To the woman’s surprise, the campsite was occupied the very next day, and her boss was thrilled. He urged her to meet the new camper, Huck the frog, and persuade him to settle on their island.
An Unpleasant Encounter
Unfortunately, the woman instantly found Huck to be insufferable. “I’m not exaggerating here when I say he was the most pretentious frog I’ve ever met”, the woman wrote. “He had this really smug smirk whenever he talked to me that I hated. And worst of all, he wanted a house here.”
A Plea to Reject Huck
Frustrated, the woman returned to her boss and attempted to convince him to reject Huck’s application. However, her boss was adamant about welcoming Huck. He even refused to fly her to search for other new campers until she set up a plot for Huck’s new home.
A Secluded Plot for Huck
Fueled by frustration, the woman executed a plan. “I set up a plot for Huck’s new home”, she started. “But I was angry, and probably a little petty, so I set up the plot in the most secluded corner of the island.”
Over the following weeks, the woman maintained a cold shoulder towards Huck. While she remained friendly with her other neighbors, she went out of her way to avoid him. Her actions were driven by an underlying grudge for the smug frog.
The Breaking Point
For over a month, the woman continued to ignore Huck. Eventually, he reached a breaking point and mentioned his desire to move away. She made no effort to persuade him to stay, and within two days, Huck departed from the island.
Reflecting on Her Actions
Whilst the woman was delighted with this turn of events, the same could not be said for her fellow campers. When she really thought about it, she couldn’t help but question her behavior. She had single-handedly run Huck out of the community and admitted that this decision had been driven by resentment and an unwillingness to cooperate.
Expressing Her Guilt
Riddled with guilt, the woman headed to the video game’s online community forum to confess her sins. “Well, you did discriminate on looks, but at least you didn’t actively try to hurt him”, one fellow gamer reminded her. “I’ve heard of people who resort to actual violence, even hitting someone on the head with a bug net to prompt neighbors to move out!”
Give Them a Chance
However, not everyone was sympathetic to the woman. “There may have been a personality clash, but sometimes folks can surprise you after first glance”, another community member wrote. “Maybe you should try to give newcomers a chance in the future before you discriminate.”
The sentiment that the woman should be more open-minded was ubiquitous. “Some of my deepest friendships have been with those that I thought I had nothing in common with”, expressed one reader. “Some people really come off like obnoxious frogs, but then one day they send you a letter thanking you for giving them a chance.”
However, one commenter wasn’t comfortable with sugar-coating the woman’s actions. “Imagine you move to a new island and are forcibly made to live as far away from everyone, and then the so-called “island rep” intentionally goes out of their way to ignore you so you leave”, the person accused.
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