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Muggles - is it really necessary?!


TheOriginalHarkers
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Hi all

 

I'll start by saying I'm new to geocaching and am enjoying the challenge as I'm out and about. The next thing I'll say is I'm quite prepared to be roasted like a well done sausage on a BBQ over this post! :D

 

After reading the logs and some of the forum posts I can't help thinking this whole "muggle" term is rather divisive and elitist and maybe just a little bit too cloak and dagger?! Whilst I can appreciate in urban areas or in areas where it's public accessible private property (such as a carpark/shopping centre etc) that a certain amount of discretion is advised, I would have thought that for most people who don't know what is happening they will either a)ignore us or b)ask what we are doing and we can sensibly explain the geocaching concept. So far, my finds have been a mixture of urban and countryside and if anyone had asked what I was doing I would be happy to explain all about it and hey, why don't they give it a go too. OK I've heard of some caches being destroyed or tampered with but maybe if more people knew about it they would look out for them being trashed by the local idiots. Maybe I'm being naive or showing my age and lack of interest in harry potter!!

 

So what are your thoughts on the term "muggle"? I suppose I better hear all the horror stories of "normal people" causing trouble and ruining caches and your finds!

 

Happy hunting

TheOriginalHarkers

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The same thing is already being discussed here.

 

Personally, I have no problem at all with it and it has been in use so long that I just don't see it changing any time soon. I surely don't see it as being divisive or elitist in and of itself. It merely provides a common term that separates those who know from those who don't. Sure, some people could use the term in an off-putting way, but that's a problem with the user, not the term. That kind of person could make "fuzzy bunny" sound bad. Ultimately, there is nothing at all that says you must use the term. Use another word if you like.

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I'm new to this too and we just got back from find #5 that said something like "beware the muggles at rush hour" And I was and might still do a post about muggle tips for new people.

 

But my son and I felt so weird pretending to look up at this tree every time a car would pass by hoping people would not know what we were doing.

 

I would love it if everyone knew what we were doing. Gonna find it hard to explain to my scout parents when we get them to go geocaching too about muggles and having to hide what we are doing. Not really the scout way to do that.

 

We love Harry Potter and think that's a neat thing to call people who do not know but we don't like to have to hide what we are doing.

 

We do carry the brochures but so far haven't had to explain

 

And from what I can tell about that other discussion is about changing the word muggles to something else which is different than this discussion

Edited by Cindyj2
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Ditto to what CindyJ said... the term muggles doesn't bother me (after all, I was one for 37 years, hehe) and my kids adore the Harry Potter-esque connotation of the term, hehe. I've never had a muggle encounter yet, but then again, I've only found five, so i'm just getting started. I don't see it as being a problem though. Some good points raised elsewhere were that someone not familiar with what you are doing could possible (a) report the cache as a possible bomb or (B) find it themselves and outright steal it. Hence the need for "stealth" or discretion. :)

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I actually see Muggles as part of the game. The ideas of finding hidden messages and not getting caught just adds another interesting and creative aspect to the game that I enjoy . However if asked I would be more than happy to share what we are doing. The name doesn't bother me. It is just a term for those who don't play.

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I am glad I am not the only one who thought using the term "muggle" was just too wierd even for me. :lol:

 

Don't get me wrong, I have read the HP series a good dozen times completely through so far. But as big a geek as I keep seeing the term muggle used here and there are only certain levels I can comfortably take my geekiness to. :blink: So I just use "people" or appropriate term when describing them. Not saying I frown on those who do use it...just saying it ain't my thing. :P

 

Brian

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By all means feel free to use whatever reference you choose and prefer when it comes to discussions of those who are not privy to and do not participate in our game. Seems simple enough to me. If you like "muggle" use it. If you like "profane" use it. If you like "non-geocacher" use it. Muggle has become prevalent because many cachers like the to use the label and no other label has gained popularity.

 

If you encounter a non-geocachermuggleprofane and he/she/it is curious about what you are doing, tell them! In just over seven years of actively playing the game I have done this only a few times. New cachers worry about this a lot. In my experience it reallt is not a common issue.

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I don't think the term is derisive at all. It's kind of funny and cute in my view, which is how most people think of it I'd wager.

 

And it's hard to offend someone, since those who don't know about geocaching don't know they are being referred to as muggles. They don't "know to be offended" since they don't "know" we exist.

 

And once they discover geocaching, they are really no longer muggles, so the reference can't offend them then, either.

 

And it's complimentary to geocachers. Since we're not muggles we must be wizards!

 

Pretty slick, if you ask me. :)

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And it's complimentary to geocachers. Since we're not muggles we must be wizards!

 

Pretty slick, if you ask me. :)

 

cool...when do I get my Nimbus 2000?????? ;-) Geocaching Quidditch would be extremely fun. ;-) (all Harry Potter references, for the four people in the world who may not have read the series, hehe. ;))

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So what are your thoughts on the term "muggle"? I suppose I better hear all the horror stories of "normal people" causing trouble and ruining caches and your finds!
I've seen caches taken, plundered, and deliberately ruined by non-geocachers. So yes, I think geocachers need to be careful about how we let the non-geocaching public know about geocaching in general, and specifically about individual geocaches hidden in public places. For example, when I teach kids at church about geocaching, I don't take them to the local suburban caches in the neighborhoods around the church. I take them to hiking trails in parks some distance away. Even if I could trust all the kids I teach, I'm not sure I can trust their school friends to leave the "hidden treasure" in their local neighborhood alone.

 

As for the term we use for non-geocachers, I think we're stuck with "muggle". Others have tried other terms (e.g., "surrep"), but nothing has caught on the way "muggle" has.

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I don't see people using muggle as a derisive term.

 

The funniest thing, must be what the muggles think of it.

 

When I'm out in the woods geocaching with a friend, we're often wandering in different directions searching when someone comes down the trail. The other yells to the first, "MUGGLE"

I'm sure very often we are heard, and I often wonder what people think of this. :laughing:

 

(we do this so the non-player doesn't see us take the cache out of it's hiding place and possibly come back to check it out later and take it)

Edited by Sol seaker
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IMO muggle is not derogatory. It's just a term to use between cachers instead of having to say "somebody that is not a cacher". Being cloak and dagger makes it more fun for me. I love spy movies. At the same time if I see muggles or get caught I'm always friendly. If they have a puzzled look and seem to be curious I don't hesitate to be courteous and inform them.

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I would love it if everyone knew what we were doing. Gonna find it hard to explain to my scout parents when we get them to go geocaching too about muggles and having to hide what we are doing. Not really the scout way to do that.

 

My wife is a two-troop Girl Scout leader and has taken both troops on cache outings that I scoped out first to make sure the caches exist and are not too difficult for a group of young girls to find. We had parents with us as well and it was very fun explaining the game to them and watching the excitement on all their faces when they found the caches. When it came to explaining muggles the parents got really excited. The whole "cloak and daggers" thing really appealed to the inner-child in them. Of course we explained that if anyone asks what you're doing that you explain to them what geocaching is and how you're not doing anything illicit or suspicious. We actually made a couple families become caching families with these outings. A lot of that had to do with the Geocaching Intro app for the iPhones (its ridiculous how many people own these things). A free, easy way to introduce them to the world of geocaching.

 

Anyway, my point is, while it might seem counter to the moral code of scouting to be secretive, you have to look at geocaching as a game. It's pretty much an electronic hide-and-seek. So long as you're not drawing attention to yourself in a negative manner, most muggles will ignore you. Be stealthy, but don't be so obvious that you look like you're up to no good.

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As for my thoughts on the term "muggle", I actually like it and don't think of it as being elitist by any stretch of the imagination. I am a huge HP nerd to begin with so any way I can incorporate ideas from that universe is OK by me. I like the idea of cachers being a "hidden society" and everyone who doesn't do it are termed as "muggles". It just makes the game that much more fun to me. Besides, who wants to go around frantically muttering "People" to others in their group when a muggle comes by? Muggle just sounds more fun.

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I would love it if everyone knew what we were doing. Gonna find it hard to explain to my scout parents when we get them to go geocaching too about muggles and having to hide what we are doing. Not really the scout way to do that.

 

My wife is a two-troop Girl Scout leader and has taken both troops on cache outings that I scoped out first to make sure the caches exist and are not too difficult for a group of young girls to find. We had parents with us as well and it was very fun explaining the game to them and watching the excitement on all their faces when they found the caches. When it came to explaining muggles the parents got really excited. The whole "cloak and daggers" thing really appealed to the inner-child in them. Of course we explained that if anyone asks what you're doing that you explain to them what geocaching is and how you're not doing anything illicit or suspicious. We actually made a couple families become caching families with these outings. A lot of that had to do with the Geocaching Intro app for the iPhones (its ridiculous how many people own these things). A free, easy way to introduce them to the world of geocaching.

 

Anyway, my point is, while it might seem counter to the moral code of scouting to be secretive, you have to look at geocaching as a game. It's pretty much an electronic hide-and-seek. So long as you're not drawing attention to yourself in a negative manner, most muggles will ignore you. Be stealthy, but don't be so obvious that you look like you're up to no good.

 

Glad someone knows what I mean. lol I just can't wait for the weather to warm up and get them in on this too! Thanks a bunch!

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