Salome’s October Project

I was raised on science fiction. *grin* Well, that was my father’s contribution anyway. Before there were personal computers and kindles and iPads (/me crows: i LOVE my iPad), there were (and are) books. I used to haunt bookstores. I read very fast. I read a lot. Science fiction and murder mysteries have been constants in my life. One of my favorite writers back in the day was Roger Zelazny. I suspect most people think of his Amber series, but he wrote much more. Some of it confused me, lots of it intrigued me. I thought I had all his books.

Then Salome Strangelove began her October Project. She is recording Zelazny’s last book, A Night In the Lonesome October. Each chapter of the book is a day in October. Salome has created a wonderful cliff-hanger, posting a chapter a day. I’d thought I’d read all his books, and when I heard Chapter 1, I was sure I’d read this. But as the month (and chapters) moved on, I realized that it was all new to me. I confess that I have cheated by ordering the book (yes, hard-copy – I didn’t HAVE an iPad then) midway through. Fate is conspiring to keep me dancing to Salome’s tune, however, and the book has not yet arrived. I wasn’t sure if I would succumb and read it or if I would prolong this wonderful experience of listening a day at a time. I’m glad I’m not having to decide.

It’s a great story. I don’t know how it ends. I have some guesses, some hopes. I’m having a fantastic time. Salome’s reading is delightful, entertaining and oh so articulate. It’s a true pleasure to listen to her read the book. Go and listen. YOU are lucky – the month is nearly over and YOU will be able to hear more than one chapter at once. *grin* Or you can have the pleasure of a month of someone entertaining you.

I love what Salome is doing. I hope she picks another story and does it again. Salome, our present-day Scheherazade.

Darn you, Odysseus

It was crafty, cunning Odysseus, you see, who thought up the trick of the wooden horse. You remember that one – how the Greeks built a BIG wooden horse, hid the soldiers inside, pretended to sail off and leave the horse. The Trojans, foolishly ignoring Cassandra, brought the horse INSIDE their walls. Then when no one was watching, all the Greeks came out of the horse and overcame the Trojans, winning what today we call The Trojan War (thank you, Homer). Or maybe I’m mad at Epeius who actually built the horse so that the stratagem worked. Whichever.

I have spent the last SIX days trying to clean up my laptop, which was infected by the Mal/Gbot-A trojan. Not only have *I* been spending my time on this. My plurk friends have helped. My coworkers have helped. Three people have spent more than 2 days at the office trying to track down this sneaky trojan and clear it out once and for all. Gbot-A is VERY good at hiding, looking like something else, not showing up in antispyware scans and cleanups. I do NOT know how I got it. I do NOT open attachments. I swear I wasn’t kissing strange websites. Yesterday I thought we’d actually rooted out the devil. But this morning – all my browsers were hijacked/blocked yet again.

What does Gbot-A do? Hijacks the browsers to a list of buy-sites. For all I know it does more than that, but that was the symptom. Symantec kept warning me of files trying to reach the internet. I’d block those processes, and then my browsers ceased to work. Gbot-A writes new keys to your registry. Modifies existing keys. Adds proxies. It is one nasty Trojan. And to think – I always preferred the Trojans to the Greeks. (Yes, even though Paris was a slimeball. I’ve always been partial to Hector and Cassandra.)

Anyway, I think maybe we finally won the war today. I have the BEST coworkers – patient, determined, giving of their time. For those of you who might want to know more, we found the solution at Sophos. My coworker cleaned up my registry this morning. I’ve rebooted twice since then and my browsers still work. What a relief.

So maybe now I can get back to my regularly scheduled life. Or maybe not. *grin* My wonderful husband gave me a present last night: an iPad!!!! And I love it!!!!

(The photo at top is a link to the Maxwell School of Syracuse University. Click through on the photo to see other related pictures.)

Is My Blog My Diary?

I don’t know quite what this blog is, what it should contain. It was easy when all I did was “factual reporting”. That’s how it started. Then it became more personal. All of it – SL, blogging.

I wrote a post this morning. It explains how I am feeling, what I think I might be doing in the future. Except…. I am reluctant to publish it. I have tried to adopt a positive outlook on life over the last few years. I have learned that even though I might be down in the dumps today, next week I may not feel that way. Even though today I may be preoccupied with emotions running rampant, tomorrow my calm rational side may rule (yes, I do SO have one. pffffft.). I’m opposed to making DECLARATIONS. Typically I end up over-turning them sooner rather than later.

So what do I do about this morning’s unpublished post? It is a true reading of who and what I am today. But I may not want to live with that recollection tomorrow. If it remains factually true, it reveals the pain I feel today. But what if it does not remain accurate? Or what if it IS accurate, but I prefer not to dwell on feeling low, feeling the pain? Should I let it simply sit there, my own outlet, and continue to focus on embracing the positive? I feel as if publishing is the proverbial kick in the pants for myself. There! I said it OUT LOUD! Now I HAVE to go forward!! But maybe it’s better to simply go forward, and skip the tears and drama?

I have to keep going forward no matter what. LOL. That comment reminds me of one of my very first posts. My coworker told me waaaaay back when that a blog was like a shark – it had to keep moving or it died. *grin* Well, the same is true for people. Maybe that is my answer.

Did I Hear What You Said?

When I was growing up, my mother gave me two wonderful books. I wanted to post a picture of the covers but they have the word “copyrighted” on the pictures on Amazon, so I’m guessing that means I shouldn’t cut and paste the picture. *grin* Both books are by Sesyle Johnson and illustrated by Maurice Sendak. They were books on manners or, as described inside the cover: “A Handbook of Etiquette for Young Ladies and Gentlemen to be Used as a Guide for Everyday Social Behavior”. The one book, What Do You Say, Dear?, explained the proper response a polite person would say for a given situation. The other, What Do you Do, Dear?, (Proper Conduct for all Occasions) taught the correct action to be performed. *grin* Oh my, I loved them. They were funny and witty. And they told me exactly what to say and do. I didn’t have to figure it out for myself if perchance the Queen fed me too much spaghetti to fit in my chair. If I followed these guidelines, I would always be secure in my interactions with others.

I bet you think this is going to be a rant on manners, don’t you? Hah! Fooled you.

Life was simpler then. I think. It could be reduced to formulas. But I suppose the meanings behind the words were as obscure then as they often are now. You see – I KNOW what I mean when I say or do something. So if YOU say or do that, well then, obviously you mean the same thing I do, right? Errrm, no. It has taken me a very long time, and sometimes I still mess it up, but just because we do/say the same thing, does not mean that we are attempting to convey the same message.

My father rarely said to my mother “I love you”. He used to tease her (and she used to joke) that he already TOLD her he loved her, she knew that, why did he need to repeat himself? Never mind that my mother would have loved to hear it many times a day, probably. (I don’t know – maybe she would have gotten bored of hearing it? Who knows now, right? *smile* ) But…. everyday in so many ways he showed his love through actions. You simply had to decipher his code and hear HOW he said it. He warmed her car and scraped the ice every day in winter. She always had the groceries she liked (he did the grocery shopping). He supported her acting career, taking over household chores without complaining to give her space. It was so clear to me.

I fret at times, get insecure. Yeah, *grin*, I get insecure about being loved, being liked, about people caring. It’s one thing to know this intellectually, it’s another to feel it inside always. Many of the people I have met in SL I’ve not met in the atomic world. I only know them through the written word, the occasional voice chat. I love many of them. On cold dreary fragile days, however, I worry that I am wrong, they don’t care, I shouldn’t bother them, it’s not reciprocated. The other day the proverbial light broke through the clouds. I got it. This one took the time to send me a one-line email/IM to say hi. I was focused on the shortness, missing the fact that time was taken not only to think of me, but to act on it. Not everyone likes to blither on and on (/me clears throat, abashed). That one pinged me after not chatting for a week and when I said “what’s up?” said “nothing, just wanted to say hi” and that was all you wrote. The other one, I realize, always responds extremely quickly when I IM. I could go on and on. So could you, dear reader. Everyone has their own way of saying “you are special to me”. Those responses seem to be such trivial actions. And, in a sense, if it were I doing them, yeah, I’d probably say a lot more if I were trying to convey importance. *laugh* But some people just don’t talk a lot. Some people are really busy. Some people are very comfortable with long periods of silence.

Is there a point to this blog? If there is any point, it really goes all the way back to one of Botgirl’s posts. Or it’s the famous don’t judge someone til you’ve walked in their shoes. Take a deep breath. Pause. Think. Try to hear what was sent and not what was received.

It can be said in so many ways. I love you.

I sat on this post for many days. I wasn’t completely satisfied or even certain that it said what I wanted to say. Not that I am sure what I want to say. But I think it needs one more paragraph.

I CAN hear you. As someone said to me on a different subject – we speak the same language but a different dialect. But. Sometimes it’s not enough to hear the message. Sometimes the medium is the message. And sometimes – I need to hear it in my dialect.

So I guess it comes full circle. I CAN hear your dialect. But sometimes, do try to use mine. I think we all need both sides of that equation.

DON’T MOVE!!!!!!

Omg. Ever since Honour has decided to go micro, I have lived in fear of her being squished underfoot. Today I joined her at a meeting and watched in horror as it seemed my worst fears would be realized. I was poised to interpose myself between Honour and an icy snowy foot of doom, when the snowcreature reseated itself. Whew!!!! And you thought life in SL was all sun and sand…. /me resolves to get a bunch of balloons to tie to Honour’s micro tail and float above her furry little head.

I Love Cheeky Pea

Just a few months ago I wrote about how Midnight Mania boards really do work. That is how I discovered Cheeky Pea, a store full of wonderful furniture and items, with some of the best pose scripts that I’ve seen in SL. Isla Gealach is the talented creator behind Cheeky Pea. I have bought many of Gealach’s items since first discovering the store. I belong to the Cheeky Pea group and head over there often to see what’s new.

The other day Oura sent me a message saying that there was a great new item, a memory board with clock. I went over to check it out. As usual, I started wandering about. I found the beach chairs. Ahhhh. You know, almost anything that uses the word “beach” will get my attention. I’m predisposed to like “beach”, “shore”, “ocean”, “coast” and more. My skybox is done as my fantasy beach house (okay, it’s missing an outdoor shower, that is true). When I saw the Cheeky Pea Beach Chairs I was hooked. I do NOT need any more inventory!!!! Isla Gealach, you must STOP making inventory that I find irresistable. I WANT those chairs. No. I NEEEEEEEEED those chairs. I made Oura come and try out the poses with me. As we were testing the various poses (there are TWO pages of options), Morgan Trevellion happened by on a hunt. I asked Morgan if she would mind posing with us. I must also say that I admire Morgan’s taste in hair, as she was wearing one of Queue Marlowe’s Analog Dog styles. I LOVE Queue’s hair and am nearly always in one of her styles. Morgan was a good sport and the three of us posed and worked our way through all the chair options. It was great fun and one of those moments of serendipity in SL.

One of the things that I particularly like about these chairs is that you can buy them with a variety of options. Although the chair is usually sold “no copy”, you ARE able to buy a copy version. I find that a BIG plus. I am grateful to merchants who sell their items with a variety of permissions, enabling me to either make copies, or to transfer or give a gift. I wish more merchants did that.

I have many pics here of us in the chairs. I also have a shot of Isla’s dock (the ducks requested that I hang out with them more) and a kitty chair. I also have a bed, a yoga mat, a photo rack, rocking chairs and of course the wonderful pillows I mentioned back in June. I find that more and more of my sky box is filled with Cheeky Pea items. I wish I could bring them into my physical house as well! Keep up the great work, Isla! Thank you for sharing your wonderful creations with us all! And thank you Morgan, for helping out! 🙂

A New Diaspora?

with apologies to Sheldon Harnick, lyricist for “Anatevka” (from the Broadway show “Fiddler on The Roof“)

SL Regions

Well, SL hasn’t exactly been the Garden of Eden. (spoken)
That’s true. (spoken)
After all, what have we got here? (spoken)

A little bit of prim, a little bit of hair.
A box, a tree, some boots, a chair.

Someone should have fixed and enhanced this place years ago. (spoken)
A sim, an av.
What’s a venue? Or a build?
People who login just once to SL don’t even know why they came. (spoken)
Burn2 constructions. Live music.

What do we leave? Nothing much.
Only our creations.

SL regions, SL regions,
Understaffed, overstressed SL regions.
Where else could meeting be so sweet?
SL regions, SL regions,
Intimate, obstinate SL regions.
Where everyone has come alive.

Soon I’ll be a stranger in some strange new grid
Wishing for my inventory hid
on SL regions

I belong in SL regions.
Content filled, full of friends SL regions.
Dear wondrous challenge, thrilling grid of mine.

Ahhhhhh. (sighed)
It’s just a place.