Always Be Kind
I've been playing Neopets for a long time. It seems as though I start many conversations and articles like this but I feel as though it is something that has to be reiterated. With this being my second account, I've been on Neopets now for a little over thirteen years and it is obvious to anyone that Neopia is not the same as it was thirteen years ago. While there are quite a few players who have been on for the same duration, I feel as though not everyone takes the time to appreciate their neo-knowledge and be able to demonstrate kindness while teaching the ways which may not be someone's own area of expertise.
There are all kinds of Neopians out there: Avatar Collectors, Restockers, Art Fanatics, Font Designers, Gamers, Stamp Collectors, Pet Traders, Battledomers, Meepit Lords, Graphic Creators, Roleplayers and let's not forget the avid NCers! These players specialize in the trading and customizing their pets to perfection... at least until the newest style comes in! The point being, each of these mentioned areas have a certain level of skill required to excel in each and, through years of playing and gaining knowledge in a particular area, players will become well versified in the rules and regulations involved in each activity. With the knowledge gained, it is only expected that these experts will then pass on certain knowledge to players who, while may not be as seasoned in a certain area, still want to be a part of them.
I would like to showcase this with a personal experience with NC trading:
Recently, I began seeking an old and very valuable item to use on one of my pet's ideal customizations. Knowing that I would need to work up to this through a few trades of my own in order to have more valued items to trade, I set up a board asking what people were currently seeking in return for the item in question (the exact name isn't really of importance here).
To my surprise, I received a Neomail from someone (who I also shall not name) not long after making the board telling me that she had the *cough* item in question and that she didn't know the value of it but would be happy to trade it to me. Excitedly, I sent a reply Neomail telling her the current value of the item and asked if there was anything in particular that she was seeking for the item.
When I received the next reply from her, I knew that she wasn't an avid NC trader and that value was not as important to her as it is to the majority of NCers. Her reply was the following:
"I have no idea what that means. XD I don't normally trade stuff, but I'm not using it and I rather it not go to waste. I am not seeking anything in particular."
I truly believe that this girl genuinely wished for me to have the background simply because she knew I would get more use of it than she did; she may have even done a one-for-one trade on a random item from my collection, but as an avid NCer (and as a good-hearted Neopian) I felt that I had to express the value of this item and give only what the value of the item was.
So I did.
In my next Neomail to her, I briefly explained how valuing worked and that I could not possibly take her item without giving her the proper value of it. So I gave a link to my current Trading List and told her to see if anything caught her eye. She agreed to look at the list, thanking me and trusting that I would give the correct values of the items she chose (she again expressed how she wouldn't know the value of anything on my list).
Her next Neomail reply was one of the sweetest things I have ever read in Neopia.
After a few moments of looking, she sent me a list of 6 items from my Trading List that she was interested in. It wasn't the 6 items themselves that made this a sweet Neomail, it was what she said before listing the items:
"like I said, I don't know what anything is worth, so if something is too much and you don't want to trade it, I understand."
The 6 items that she chose came to a collective total of a 9 in value. This was a little less than 1/4 of the real value of the item I desired.
I couldn't believe how little value meant to this person. After trading countless NC items I had never seen anything like it! She belonged to a category of Neopians who, I feel, are not too often come across. She believes in playing for the sake of enjoyment and being a truly kind person while doing this.
Still, I couldn't in good conscience trade these 6 items for this really valuable item. In my next reply, I explained that I would trade the items as a part of the entire trade. I went on to explain that the items were worth a collective 9 and offered 2 of my more valuable items in addition to the 6. I then offered to make up the rest of the value with pure GBCs. The trader was happy, and I was thrilled!
We traded and I am now the happy owner of one of my "probably never gonna happen anytime soon" items!
The point of this anecdote was to express the importance of true and genuine kindness in any aspect of the site. No one deserves to be taken advantage of, especially if they don't realize that it's happening. I share this story with all of you (it's one of my new favourite Neo-stories I think) in hopes that you will find inspiration and kindness within it.
I often question the amount of good-hearted people who remain in today's Neopia. From what I experience on a day-to-day basis, Neopia, especially on the boards, is a place filled with values, rules, and expectations all of which you will generally be verbally insulted if you don't follow. In regards to this image of Neopia, I used to think that I was different. A good natured, old-school Neopian who defied the new-age rules and did what I felt was right. I was wrong. The truth is, while I may be an old-school Neopian with a good heart, I one day hope to reach the level of kindness that this trader showed me.
Expect kind things when you're a kind Neopian.
**Post-script: Yes, this is a true story. While the trader in question may never see it, it is a true expression for my gratitude to the good heartedness of this individual. **