TORC Discoverer - Episode 4: The Once and Future Oldbie
Oldbies for N00bies
N00bs often ask what makes an Oldbie. Those devoted few who have spent more time at TORC than at their jobs, who are known throughout the boards and are fondly missed when inactive.
One thing which the majority of Oldbies have in common is an old join date.
Oldbies have a join date that is from at the very least one year ago. They post regularly and are always recognized when they enter a thread.
A n00b will often start a thread for the express purpose of attracting an Oldbie to it and gaining recognition. This often backfires, leaving the n00b, although well known, not in particular favor with the denizens of the boards.
There is a lot of conflict about the exact definition of an Oldbie. To a n00b, anyone who joined before them is an Oldbie, but to one Oldbie, another Oldbie with an later join date is in some ways still a n00b (or at leat a Middlebie). The exact definition is still under debate in a locked room somewhere in the bowls of TORC.
Post Count Does Not An Oldbie Make
When looking at an Oldbie, one normally looks at the post count. This is a huge mistake. Yes all the Ringbearers are Oldbies, but some of the most respected Oldbies have relatively low post counts. This is because they do not feel the need to impress anyone with lots of pretty symbols. They rely instead on quality rather than quantity.
The average Oldbie has refined their posting skills to the level where they only post thoughtful, well written posts, which do not waste valuable bandwidth.
The Oldbie is an obsessive TORCer, feeling the onset of withdrawal symptoms if away from its fair boards for more than a 24hour period. They visit at least once a day, often risking trouble from their employer while TORCing at work, unable to get through the working day without their fix. This enables the Oldbie to develop such skills as window concealment and speed posting. Few hardened Oldbies who remain get discovered in the workplace.
Oldbies love to reminisce; quite often a single phrase in a thread will spawn pages upon pages of posts remembering past threads and TORCers who posted in them. To some n00bs this is fascinating; to others it is plain boring. Heaven help the n00bie who posts during one of these threads and asks why the thread has gone off topic and what are they all talking about. The response of the Oldbies is usually one to teach the n00b a lesson... and respect of TORC history.
Which leads us to a pastime that many Oldbie enjoy; N00bie bating. What better fun is there to be had than to antagonize the poor naïve n00bs? It can take many forms, including the traditional n00bie trap. Then there are the replies to unresearched, badly thought out posts. Sarcasm abounds and often the hapless n00b is embarrassed into silence.
Oldbies have been there and seen it all. They have survived the Purist/Revisionist Wars and the division of Talk. They have watched the board shape into what we see today.
But that doesn't mean that they have forgotten about the past. Oldbies love to gather and the phrase "Remember when?" will cause a great influx of posts into the thread. This has come to be known as the Oldbie Trap; all that is required is the thread title of "all those who joined before XXX" and the Oldbies flock and fight their way in through the door.
Knowledge of former rivalries and Alliance Wars that make up the past of TORC are considered to be vital to any Middlebies claim to Oldbness. Often the council of Oldbies will perform secret tests of others knowledge so as to establish the unofficial hierarchy which is extremely important but has no reason.
History of TORC is a required subject in the Oldbie exam which all Middlebies must take to assume Oldbie status. It constitutes of 40% of the final mark.
Middlebies will trawl through thousands of ancient threads in order to do research.
The First Born
There are a rare few, whose join dates bare the universally respected '99 or '00. These are the first born of TORC. Those revered members who made their first post on the old theonering.com message boards. Those respected few such as Rodia , whose early attempts at spamming were controlled by ShadowJack. Who still post and spam with learned intuition as to a Mods whereabouts in relation to their latest post.
These five year veterans have proven their devotion to TORC above all others, and continue to do so.
The Once and Future Oldbie
Oldbies are a part of the TORC furniture. They will continue to grace our boards, occasionally adding new members to their ranks, but always carrying the Flame of TORC.
They are our curators, our historians and most importantly, a source of unbridled amusement to n00bs, Mods, and other Oldbies.