This one is for the Dallas Steaks and their fans. Meet the Collective Dadconscious.
The vessel of the Collective Dadconscious is Matthew Black.
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Kimberly: Hey there, listeners! This is Take Me Out To The Blall Game, the world's most parental blaseball podcast. I’m your host, Kimberly Dauber, and I use she/her pronouns. Today we're going to talk about the Collective Dadconscious. It's a strange but very wholesome phenomenon that exists among Dallas Steaks fans. But first, we have a message from the Collective Dadconscious itself to all fans of the Dallas Steaks.
Collective Dadconscious: Hey kiddos, it's your dads, and we've been asked to read some survey responses about ourselves. However, before we start, we have some words for the team and the fans. It's not often that we get to speak in such a public forum, due to our host having stage fright, but even they agreed that this was too important not to speak on. It is with the heaviest of hearts that we mourn the loss of August Mina and Thomas Kirby. There will never be enough words to mitigate the pain that we are all feeling right now.
Conner, we're speaking directly to you now. This is not your fault. Everything happens for a purpose, especially the painful things. This team is your team for a reason. You are not alone in this. Go hug Herman and leech. Talk to Sam about dry rubs. Go cloudgazing with Sky. Just be there for them. You are their leader and their support, but they are also your family. They are there if you need a break. And when you're good and ready, go kick the Peanut’s pompous ass for us.
K: Hey there, listeners. We are back on Take Me Out To The Blall Game. I am here with Lindsey, a fan of the Dallas Steaks. Hey, Lindsey! Welcome to the show.
Lindsey: Hello, Kimberly, how are you?
K: I’m doing all right! Lindsey, I got a question for you to start off with, first of all. What should we call you, what are your pronouns, and is the Commissioner doing a great job?
L: Well, my name is Lindsey. I sometimes go by Lindsey Rae online, just because I like my middle name, but just Lindsey’s fine. I use she/her pronouns, and I think the Commissioner is doing a great job, as are, you know, all the fans and just all the people involved in making this great splort happen.
K: I agree completely. Everyone is doing a great job, and that definitely includes the Commissioner. So, speaking of people who are doing a great job, we are here today to talk about the fans of the Dallas Steaks and a phenomenon that has apparently arisen among them called the Collective Dadconscious, so, since you’re a Steaks fan, can you just explain to me and all of our listeners: what is the Collective Dadconscious exactly?
L: So, the Collective Dadconscious is a force that imparts dadly qualities upon fans of the Dallas Steaks—
L: —and what that boils down to is basically just the platonic ideal of a dad, you know, someone who's proud of you, and someone who is supportive of you, and just— “Hey, sport!” You know? Or “splort,” sorry. “Do your best out there!” It’s sort of a thing of, like, some people may not have the best relationships with their real-world dad, so trying to be a sort of person who people would like to have as a dad.
K: Ugh, that is so wholesome. I’m so happy that this exists, and that it apparently permeates through the Dallas Steaks. I was actually wondering: it sounds like this would give rise to a lot of interesting stories? What’s your favorite story about this?
L: So, at the end of Season 8, right before the elections happened, there was a Hlomecoming: just a chance for people to get their creative juices flowing—
K: Yeah, yeah!
L: —and get to make cool art of the players, and there was a Hlomecoming royalty election that ended up being won by Wyatt Quitter because, I mean, look at them. They're great. So of course they won emprex. And it was a chance for people to just come together as a community and put aside, you know, any rivalries teams may have and just have a great time together.
K: Oh, that’s so wonderful! And what did the Collective Dadconscious have to do with it?
L: We were actually the ones who organized it. We provided food. We had bone-in corn dogs. [Kimberly laughs.] You know, some people didn’t want bone-in corn dogs, so we provide boneless corn dogs for them.
K: That's good, that's good, got it covered, people who want bones in their corn dogs and without bones in their corn dogs.
L: Yeah, exactly.
K: I went to Hlomecoming. I got dressed up for it, too. I put on—
L: Yeah, you looked great!
K: Thank you! I put on my blaseball bow tie, and I put a picture on Twitter, and people liked the picture, and that was very nice of them.
L: It was a very good picture.
K: Thank you. It was a glamour shot. It had my bisexual flag in the background, too. That was exciting.
K: Yes. Well, Hlomecoming was super fun, and I'm so, so glad that the dads organized it for the blaseball community. I have one more question for you before we cut to the break. So, you said earlier that the Collective Dadconscious, as the platonic ideal of a dad, is, quote, “very proud of you,” unquote, so I was wondering if you could tell us exactly how proud of us is the Collective Dadconscious?
L: Well, as the Collective Dadconscious is infinite, they are infinitely proud of you and everyone, except for TERFs—
K: Except for TERFs. Yes.
L: —and, you know, other forms of bigotry. We are proud of everyone, unless you are a bigot. That's pretty much the one rule we have here.
K: All right. Well, thank you so much, Lindsey. Listeners, we will be right back to hear more about the Collective Dadconscious after this short break. Stay tuned.
The following is part two of a message from the Collective Dadconscious. They were kind enough to read survey responses from Steaks fans about themself. Here we go.
CD: Let's read some answers.
K: What is the Collective Dadconscious?
CD: Just hangin’ out and having a good time. Makin’ sure everyone else is, too.
The collective manifestation of grill dads, regardless of gender, since anyone can be one.
It's the nodding look of approval from that corner over there.
K: Are we invited to the cookout?
CD: Everyone is invited to the cookout, except transphobes. We’re grillin’, we’re chillin’, we’ve got meats and non-meats of all kinds. Come on down and have a good time. Or don’t—no pressure.
Yes, but bring some ice. We could always use some ice.
Got a steak for you cooked just how you like it: well done.
K: What does the Collective Dadconscious mean to the Steaks?
CD: It's everything. It is the definition of being a fan. Everything. We are nothing without the dads. What does salt mean to a peanut? What does blood mean to a pitching machine? It's what sustains us.
K: What does the Collective Dadconscious mean to you?
CD: It means being welcoming and kind to all.
It's the knowledge that, no matter what I do, I'm always on the right track. There is someone or something watching my back.
Blaseball reminds me of family car trips and overpriced hot dogs. It's nice to know that there's a metaphysical force for that.
The Collective Dadconscious represents all the good things about the Steaks for me. We just wanna vibe and have fun with each other. I generally don't like sports because the communities focus on the competition, and it's nice that both the Steaks and the Dadconscious represent so acutely the culture in the community more than anything. No one walks away from the team having a bad time, and that's really nice, you know?
K: Tell us anything else we should know about the Collective Dadconscious.
CD: Even though the word “dad” is right in there, it is by no means a gendered idea. Anyone and everyone can exude and embody the essence of being a dad, even without a hint of being or presenting as “traditionally masculine.”
They're proud of you, splort.
Take Me Out To The Blall Game is a big undertaking, and you are doing an amazing job with it.
The Dadconscious is sort of like the Force as described in A New Hope. It's a metaphysical force created from and shaped by the psyche of all dads, so it didn't really come to be so much as it just always was. It's a thread that connects the multiverses, it's the nudge that started the Big Bang, and it'll be the blanket that keeps us warm once the universe grows cold.
We are proud of you. We're proud of all of you. We pinky promise. If you need anything don't hesitate to reach out to our human host or the big blaseball in the sky. They're proud of you, too. Go eat some chili for us, watch the stars, and tell someone you love them.
K: Hey there, listeners! Thank you for sticking around. We are back here with Lindsey or Lindsay Rae, a fan of the Dallas Steaks and a sometime vessel for the Collective Dadconscious, which seems to be some sort of platonic ideal of a dad-like entity that can take over the minds of fans of the Dallas Steaks and be a good dad to anybody who needs it. So, Lindsey, thanks again for being on the show.
L: Of course! Thank you.
K: I want to ask you in particular now: what does the Collective Dadconscious mean to you personally?
L: For me, it's a place where, like—I’m demisexual, demiromantic, and bi—and it's a place where I can be open about who I am and also be open about the fact that I am also neurodivergent, and the Collective Dadconscious is a place where I can be open about that and accepted for who I am as a person and celebrated for who I am.
K: Mmm. I love that it's this— it's a little bit of a gimmick, but it also has such a deep meaning underneath that, you know?
K: And it's able to— are you saying it makes you feel welcome?
L: It makes me feel welcome. Also it's a place where I can tell bad puns, and nobody gets mad at me!
K: [Laughs] That's very good. That's extremely important!
K: Actually, I was kind of wondering: speaking of being welcome, as you might have heard I myself am a blaseball in the sky with a microphone and, if you listen to all this podcast, then you know that I seem to just come into existence when blaseball itself came into existence. And that means that, as far as I know, I don't have a dad. So, I'm trying to understand what this means and what it would be like to have a dad, so I was kind of wondering, um, could the Collective Dadconscious be my dad?
L: Well, I mean, you want to try it out, kiddo? See how you like it?
K: Oh, can we do that? Is that a thing?
K: Okay! Okay, sure! Sure, let's give a shot!
L: Hey, kid!
L: I'm proud of you. I hear you're doing this little podcast thing. And, you know, I don't get all this technology stuff and podcasts, but: you keep on podding your cast and doing a great job at it. Have you been drinking enough water today? It's important to hydrate, you know?
K: Yeah. Yeah, I just refilled my water bottle right before I started recording this interview.
L: Well, that's good. I’m proud of you.
L: Keep up the great work, kiddo, okay?
K: Thanks. Thanks, dad.
L: You’re welcome, kid.
K: Wow. That is an extraordinarily powerful Dadconscious. I like it. I like it! I’m gonna have to come back and visit. Thank you, Lindsey.
L: Yeah! Stop by anytime.
K: Okay, well, we're almost out of time. I've got one more question for you before we go, though, and that is: as you know, we are all love blaseball, so can you tell me what are you love about blaseball?
L: I mean, it's got to be, like, the community and the fact that I can just be reading a character’s wiki and see that it mentions that he avoids eye contact and be like, “Oh! I avoid eye contact, and I am neurodivergent, therefore I'm going to say that this character is neurodivergent. And people just immediately accept that and are, like, “Yeah! Yeah, he is.”
K: Yeah. Yeah.
L: And, you know, it's a place where I feel like people, regardless of their identity—or, you know, anything about them—can find a character who they can identify with. And I like that.
K: I like it, too. I like it, too. I like that I can see myself in blaseball. I can see other literal blaseballs. It's great. [Both laugh.]
L: I really hope the players don't hit you with the blaseball bats.
K: You know, everyone's got their role in the game. I'm not sure how I got up here, but I kind of suspect that it was not, uh, peaceful. [Laughs.]
L: Oh, no!
K: But, you know, it's okay. I'm sure I'll find out in good time. All right, Lindsey, thank you so, so much for coming. We are out of time now. Listeners, that is all for today, so: Lindsey Rae, where can our listeners find you?
L: So I am LindseyRae on Discord. I'm usually hanging out in the Blaseball Discord, either in #fanwork or in the Steaks chat. I also run a Twitter account for the Dallas Steaks’ own Conner Haley, and that is @Conner_Comet, C-O-N-N-E-R.
K: All righty. Oh, and also, if blaseball fans are in need of a dad, how does one summon the Collective Dadconscious?
L: There's lots of different ways. You can, you know, pop into the Steaks’ Discord channel. We're always welcoming visitors. Or you can just say, “I’m hungry,” [Kimberly laughs] and someone will respond with, “Hi, hungry. I'm Dad.”
K: [More laughter] Wonderful. Thank you so much, Lindsey.
L: Of course!
K: All right, listeners, remember to follow us on Twitter @blaseball_pod. Remember to send us your blaseball questions, opinions, and soulscreams. We would love to hear your reactions to the latest blaseball events and suggestions for topics we should cover. We might just have you on the show—that's how Lindsey got here. We especially love to get recordings of your voices since this is, indeed, a podcast. To contact us, you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. I am your host, Kimberly Dauber, this is been Take Me Out To The Blall Game, and thank you for participating in the cultural event of blaseball.
L: I have, like, a shirt on that’s got Mothman on it, and then I put on a plaid button- down over top, and I have that unbuttoned, but I have my blaseball cap here with me next to me on the table.
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Transcribed by Nat.