Archive for September, 2008



For a Friend

Hurting. Drained. Bereft.
Nothing tangible to strike.
Simply hurts to breathe.

Maybe It’s True

Okay, maybe you are all right. Maybe I AM addicted to SL. I don’t think so, but none of you are listening to me. And I’m getting blamed for everyone else’s behavior also. ๐Ÿ™‚ You know that my sister came inworld way back in the beginning. She hasn’t been around much, but we still talk about it all and occasionally she bops in to visit. My husband signed up about a week or so ago to check it out. ๐Ÿ™‚ We’ve met ONCE inworld – he’s running about doing his own thing, learning to build. I told him he’ll build and I’ll learn to script. But I think he’ll learn to build before I stop being lazy enough to be a productive team member. And now – my niece is inworld!!!! YAY!!! We had sooooooo much fun last night! She’s a natural. ๐Ÿ™‚ She was bopping about shopping before I could come join her. (I must say – I think it’s terribly rude to taunt me by IM’ing me while I’m at work to tell me all the fun things you are doing!!) I finally caught up with her in the evening. I showed her NCI, introduced her to my friends, gave her some inventory. Everyone we met said “Oh, did Ahuva bring you in?” And she, refusing to take responsibility for her OWN actions said “Yes”. Excuse me???? Did I type your name in to an account?? Did I force you to spend hours inworld??? I wasn’t even logged on!! HOW can this be MY fault??? And every single “friend” at NCI assured her that yes, Ahuva really is addicted to SL. Gee. I thought I was hiding it better than that. ๐Ÿ™‚ I guess I was wrong.

So how can everyone tell I’m addicted? Because I login every day? Um, so do THEY!!! Oh wait – I guess that means they’re addicted too, right? LOL. What they DON’T know are all the other clues that tell me I have to confess. I AM addicted. I have begun to dream as if all my life is viewed through a monitor. I am dreaming of SL characters mixed with RL characters. SL places are appearing in my dreams. I wake up in the morning thinking about what to wear and realize that I am reviewing my inventory, not my RL closet. I am trying to click and pan the camera and tp and all other SL actions whenever my hand is on the mouse – no matter what application I am in. My hand-memory is inworld all the time. ๐Ÿ™‚ I was at a RL gathering on Sunday. It was wonderful to see so many people I hadn’t seen in awhile. We’re all chatting and saying “What’s new?” I found myself getting ready to bring them up to date on our friends when I realized that the people of whom I was thinking were in SL and these RL people didn’t know them. LOL.

I will take responsibility for my own actions. I will face the truth. Yes – it’s true. I’m gonna have to face it I’m addicted to SL. For the rest of you – hey – you’re on your own!!! LOL

With apologies to Robert Palmer:

Your lights are on, but you’re not home
Your mind is not your own
Your heart sweats, your body shakes
Another click is what it takes

You donโ€™t sleep, you donโ€™t eat
There’s no doubt, you’re in deep
Your arm is sore, your back too
Graphics cards will get you through

Whoa, you like to think that you’re immune to the stuff, oh yeah
It’s closer to the truth to say you can’t get enough
You know you’re gonna have to face it, you’re addicted, in love

Shapes and Changes

Alright. I did it. I explored alternative life styles in SL. ๐Ÿ™‚ Hah! Get your minds out of the gutter!!! I’m talking about avatar appearance. After my discussion with Ryg (see “What would YOU do?”), I tp’d back to NCI to my friends who thought I looked just fine. LOL. But I decided that perhaps their opinions were a bit skewed. That evening, more of us were non-human than human. Everyone was rotating through their various forms and appearances. It really was quite a show! U and I were the only ones without a non-human av. I do have at least 2 other avatar shapes I picked up for free, but I’ve never used them. Oh, not quite true. I took the eyes from one. ๐Ÿ™‚ Used the hair from another to go shopping one day. But you get the point. So when L offered me a new shape I figured now was the time! So I took myself to the dressing room and transformed myself into a Mini Black House Cat. ๐Ÿ™‚

It was cute. I’m not sure why Tinies need to have special chairs for sitting. Note the carrot that L supplied as well. Certainly the orange set off my black fur and blue eyes quite nicely. But when all is said and done, eh. I still have no desire to be an animal. Perhaps I am simply boring or uncreative. Wearing wings on occasion is amusing. I’m still thinking about getting ears and a tail. But being a cat really didn’t do much for me. Maybe this is like true love – I’ll “know” when the right shape comes along. In the meantime I will simply admire and enjoy everyone else’s creative shapes. Such as this 3-headed dog that leaves fire-y footprints. You really do meet the most interesting people at NCI.

A RL friend asked me about buying hair and skins. It does sound peculiar if you’ve never done it. ๐Ÿ™‚ So here you go. The first photo shows the display (the ad) for the hair style and the various colors. If you click on the gray Demo box, you buy a demo for L$1. You can try it on to see how you like it. Notice that there is a big box floating above your head. ๐Ÿ™‚ So you can’t wear the demo unless you also want to wear the box. If you decide you want the hair style, you click on the color you want. At that point you are charged the full amount (assuming you click pay). And that’s it – the hair is in your inventory and when you want to have your hair look like that, you wear it. And when you want a different look, you wear different hair. Or skin. Or shape. It’s really that simple. So what do you think? I rather like this ‘do. Now which color……

Fishing!

Let me say right from the get-go that I know nothing about fishing. I think I’ve been exactly once, on a charter boat in Little Egg Harbor. The blues we caught were tasty but that once was sufficient. Ah, it was sufficient until I experienced SL fishing!!! What a blast!!!!

J and I were hanging out on the benches, chatting. U and A came and joined us. I’d missed the big fishing contest a few days earlier because I was on a shopping expedition. J decided that what we all needed was to go fishing. So we tp’d to where M and S had set up everything necessary for an enjoyable fishing trip. ๐Ÿ™‚ You could purchase poles and bait, get your name up on the leader score board, or simply gaze at the various aquariums. J gave me a pole (thank you SO much, generous J!!!) and showed me how to find bait. For one horrifying moment I thought she meant we’d have to dig for it ourselves!!! I knew at that point, virtual world or not, I was not fishing. I am NOT touching worms!!!!! Eewwwww! To my great relief, “finding bait” meant turning the vending machine to the proper selection! LOL.

So armed with poles and bait, we headed to the dock. A and U were already there fishing, as they were experts at this already. M and S were working on aquariums at first, but they both picked up poles later and joined in. I had no idea what to do. We were all standing on the dock and the other 3 were casting and catching. J told me to type /1 cast. AH! So I did. And I was remarkably unsuccessful. Fish are being caught to my left and to my right, but I’m catching nothing. Hmmm. At this point, RL fishing was winning over SL fishing. ๐Ÿ™‚ I did finally catch a seahorse. I wore him and named him Seabiscuit. ๐Ÿ™‚ Just like that – SL fishing moved into the lead.

A and J were pulling in the fish left and right. U was hooking quite a few as well. But me, well I kept getting messages like “No fish that time, afraid! Keep trying!” and “You almost got a fish, but it slipped away” and, most aggravating, “Yikes, that one put up a fight! Shame it got away”. I really did not like that pole!!!!! A was full of helpful advice: Spit on the hook. Stand closer to the edge. It’s all in the cast. Being the good and gracious sport that I am, I threatened to push him off the dock. ๐Ÿ™‚ J gave up her spot to me, hoping it might help matters. What really helped was when U IM’d me and told me that I had to click on the reel of the fishing pole to load the bait!!!! Well, no wonder I wasn’t catching anything – there was no bait on my hook!!!! LOL. I told you I have no idea how to fish. Thank goodness that I don’t have to touch the bait – a little click will do you.

And so the time passed. The conversation was light-hearted. The fish were caught and some released to swim about our heads. Other fish were released into the aquariums. We fished and we laughed and we had a wonderful time. And of course there was beautiful moonlight on the water. (Notice that J (whose photo I used above) was fishing in daylight but I was fishing at night!. Ah, the wonders of SL!!)

Thanks M and S, for making such a wonderful place and for allowing all your friends to come and enjoy it too!

What would YOU do?

A few weeks ago I wrote about my appearance in SL and how so many people felt they had the right to walk up to me and make suggestions for improvements (“Makeover”, July 28). I thought I’d looked fine when I was “born” back on June 26 but I had to agree that once C got done with me, I looked much better. I’ve added a few more little tweaks here and there (like buying hair). I’m not a knock-out. I’m not going to turn heads when I walk into a room. I went skin shopping and picked up some demo’s I’m still contemplating. I have an idea for the next hair I’m going to buy. I’m sure I’ll do some changes but I’m not in a big rush to do so. I am comfortable with how I look. It suits how I feel when I’m in SL. (Or – do I act as I do because of how I look???? I’m not going there today.)

So I am still somewhat at a loss about a conversation that took place a few nights past. I was inworld tp’ing about, listening to live music. Several of my friends were online but most were in the middle of other activities and I was enjoying my own company. I was savoring the freedom of roaming a new world all by myself without fear, enjoying my growing confidence in navigating all the aspects of living a virtual life. I tp’d into a well-known jazz club. How do I know it’s well-known? LOL. Even I had heard of it! ๐Ÿ™‚ It was a large room and most people were up close to the stage. I strolled over to a table on the outskirts of the room and settled in to listen to the music, sending occasional IM’s to other friends.

A new IM popped up in the window. It was from RemakeYourselfGal, Ryg. (No, of course that isn’t her name – the names have been changed to protect the guilty.)
Ryg: you get that pic?
AH: excuse me?
Ryg: I sent you a pic I took of you
AH: oh! no. are you sure you are talking to the right person?

The message box popped up and there indeed was a fairly nice pic of me. I was baffled. Why was a total stranger taking pictures of me? Ryg and I exchanged pleasantries. She told me she was trying to guess my age by my avatar’s appearance. It turned out that she specialized in makeovers: nightclubs, landscaping and people. I began to have an inkling of where this conversation might be heading. I thought Ryg was trying to recruit me as a client. I figured that she simply approached many strangers and began her sales pitch this way. But she told me she didn’t charge for make-overs, she wanted to help others so that they didn’t struggle as she had. I was still fairly relaxed and happy, so, laughing to myself, I asked her if I should be worried that a make-over artist approached me.

AH: I am curious as to why you initiated the conversation
Ryg: well I mentor an I have seen a hundred girls that look like you
AH: does this mean you think i am desparately in need of make-over?
Ryg: mmm the short answer is no, but I feel you could look a lot closer to what you want to project here

Deep Breath. At this point part of me is ready to lash out at her and ask her how she, a total stranger, dares to presume to tell me what I want to project. The other part of me is fascinated by the whole conversation and wants to see how far she’s going to take it. Obviously the latter won or there would be no blog. ๐Ÿ™‚ I was going to put all of our dialogue in here but that is overkill and boring. So what follows are a few choice excerpts. (Which may still be boring! ๐Ÿ™‚ ) We talked about many things, but it always drifted back to her presumption that I needed to be “fixed”. Let me say, however, that I believe Ryg was trying to be nice. She thought she was being kind, offering to help a newbie figure things out. One inworld friend thought the conversation constituted a form of abuse and I should have reported Ryg. I think that’s extreme. I don’t believe she was trying to insult me or hurt me. But….. The road to Hell is paved with good intentions.

AH: I am curious as to why you initiated the conversation
Ryg: well I mentor an I have seen a hundred girls that look like you
.
AH: so you like my boots. what is it about my appearance that you think needs fixing?
Ryg: you need to differentiate yourself from the 5 million other sally sue’s out there . . eyes first then hair, maybe a nice skin
Ryg: NICE skin
Ryg: I like just enough makeup to accent my lips and eyes . .maybe a touch of rouge on the cheeks
.
Ryg: you need a facelight too, this place is notoriously dim, all of sl
Ryg: other people need to see your pretty face
Ryg: see you are over in the corner in the dark, no one witout radar will know you are there
AH: But Ryg, what if that’s okay?
Ryg: thats fine
Ryg: you don impress me as someone who wants to avoid people
AH: so what do you think of this face light? better?
Ryg: lol is it on?
.
AH: that leads me back to my original question, why me? how did you “see” me walk in
Ryg: you are the only woman outside help island I have seen that looks like you
AH: LOL. i guess that’s a bad thing
Ryg: well not a bad thing, you are not unique
Ryg: an I think you want to be

At this point I confess that she was really starting to depress me. Good thing she liked my new black boots or I think I’d have run out of the club and jumped off the nearest bridge. Good thing I had friends on the IM telling me to ignore her and to gasp at her comments. I was giving serious thought to slinking out of there and finding a paper bag to put on my poor, hundred-other-girl face. Ryg told me how she made-over her current girlfriend. Ryg gave her Ryg’s own body shape. They had different skins, eyes, hair, etc., but they had the same shape. I replied that I thought there was no problem with sharing a shape but that otherwise being the same could be problematic. I realize now from reading our chat that Ryg thought I was talking about my own body staying the same shape. Even so.

Ryg: She is the only person I gave my shape to, she has diff skin an hair, or she would look like me
AH: i can see where that wouldnt work. but same shape should be fine
Ryg: well . . thinner waist? biggger boobs? some butt? who knows . . but lord you can try

“but lord you can try”

That was the point at which I decided I’d had enough. I excused myself and tp’d to the NCI boardwalk.

Let me give you the last little supreme irony, a line from Ryg’s own profile: Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.

So, dear reader, there you have it. What would you have said or done?

We are a Multitude

Take 7 minutes and watch this video about different virtual worlds. It gives you a brief view of approximately 50 virtual worlds. Interspersed among the videos are relevant and thought-provoking quotattions. Many thanks to Holli Hollwood who posted this link on her blog.

Rave!

Saturday night was my first-ever SL rave! “Rave” probably needs to be defined. ๐Ÿ™‚ I want to make sure my readers and I are thinking the same thing. According to Wikipedia: A rave (or rave party), is a term, in use since the 1980s, to describe dance parties (often all-night events). At these parties DJs and other performers play electronic dance music (sometimes referred to as “rave music”), with the accompaniment of laser light shows, projected images, and artificial fog. LOL. We have attended numerous “coming of age parties” for young teens. Nearly all of those parties would fit the definition of a rave. But Wikipedia goes on to say that raves are often associated with the use of ‘”club drugs”. Hmmm. I confess that is NOT within my experience (/me waves “Hi Mom!!”) ๐Ÿ™‚ The good news for me was that Shenlei’s Universal Rave fit the first part of the definition! I WAS sipping some white wine while attending, but I figure that qualifies as the “artificial fog” part, no?? ๐Ÿ™‚

Oh Shen!!! You are the best! Back in my early days you and Calli helped me clean up my avatar act both technically and visually. You gave me horses to ride and fly. You helped me put together a fun outfit for partying. And now- my first full-blown wild rave party in SL!!!! What a blast! I wish I had a movie of it. I wish I had thought to take pictures right from the beginning. I wish I were a better photographer! I want to show everyone who reads this what fun we all had.

The setting - the universe!!!

The setting - the universe!!!

How can I communicate the total sensory overload of the Universal Rave???
The music – loud, pounding, fun, non-stop, great for dancing
The lights – LOVED the light show. Folks – all the planets were circling about us. Lights were flashing and exploding everywhere.
Amusements – anti-gravity bubbles and more
Guests – what a fun crowd and such creative outfits!!! I also forgot to save any chat to show readers how “explosions” can happen in chat boxes as well

I hope someone out there took really great photos and posts them so that everyone can see what an incredible, wonderful, fun, stimulating, transporting, wild time we all had. Until I find that link, understand these photos to be my best attempt, deficient as it is, to communicate part of the experience

The setting - planets, stars, bubbles, lights, rainbows

The setting - planets, stars, bubbles, lights, rainbows


the Outfits - wherever did you find that great costume for Rez Tone?

Outfits - wherever did you find that great costume for Rez Tone?


The Outfits - WHY didn't I get a better picture of the 2 of you?

The Outfits - WHY didn't I get a better picture of the 2 of you?


Party favors - glow sticks, sparkles, hula-hoop glowing rings and more, sparkler in hand, star burst on leg, dancing up a meteor storm!

Party favors - glow sticks, sparkles, hula-hoop glowing rings and more, sparkler in hand, star burst on leg, dancing up a meteor storm!


Dancing in a bubble in the starry night

Dancing in a bubble in the starry night


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