Posts Tagged 'Callipygian Christensen'

Personal Problems Amidst Our Global Problems

The pictures have nothing to do with the post. But you might find this post tl;dr or you might find it a bit distressing or unpleasant. So look at the cats. 🙂

BC playing nurse

BC playing nurse

Sigh. So it came back. I knew it would. I hoped it wouldn’t but since it came back a second time I was sure that we are now going to have this as a yearly occurrence. And sure enough – it came back. What is “it”? It’s this stupid area on my tongue, that I never even noticed the first time, because it’s on the underside of my tongue and really – who stares at their tongue all that much? My dentist noticed it and sent me to the oral surgeon. He said – yeah, we need to remove that. We could laser it off but then we won’t know what it is, so we are better off cutting it off. Just stop there a moment folks and picture someone saying to YOU: “We’re going to take a slice off your tongue.” I didn’t really handle it all that well. That first year they used only local anesthesia and I stupidly watched them part of the time and could hear them and I thought I might have a stroke right there in the chair. I was so traumatized emotionally that I couldn’t even process the fact that after the first day it wasn’t so painful and it healed fairly quickly. Somewhere along the line my nerves had snapped and I was completely traumatized. Ended up with an ulcer. Dropped something like 5 pounds in 3 days. I told them if we EVER had to do this again I needed to be unconscious and completely unaware. When the results came back they were the kind that the medical professionals say “oh that’s good” and the patient says “oh dear heavens what is going to happen to me?” All *I* can remember now is that it was “dysplasia“: “Before cancer cells form in tissues of the body, the cells go through abnormal changes called hyperplasia and dysplasia.” Everyone else was like “oh great it’s NOT cancer” and I was “oh dear heavens I could have cancer of the tongue”. No one in my family has or had cancer. A medical friend said to me “and that’s still true”. But it’s not his tongue.

GC and WC on the red couch

GC and WC on the red couch – a very typical late morning scene

I survived. I wasn’t happy. I refused to look at my tongue for a year. I skipped the 6 month go-back-and-see-the surgeon. I see my dentist 3x a year. I figured if it came back, she would know. It came back. I said you will knock me out so I have no idea what is happening. They said not a problem. But the closer it got to the procedure, the more I thought about it. If it was going to come back every year, well maybe it was time to put on my big girl pants, as the saying goes. How could I survive this? The physical recovery had not been that bad. It was the procedure and the initial terror of the procedure and possible results. If I could get through the procedure, it would be better to not use anesthesia. Especially if it were to be a yearly event, karma forbid. I came up with a plan. *smile* Oh, Komuso Tokugawa, your Downtempo Bluestronica was my salvation. I had downloaded 3 of his Downtempo Bluestronica riffs, each of them just under an hour. I knew that Bluestronica2 was loud enough, with few enough pauses that if I played it VERY LOUDLY through ear buds into my ears, I wouldn’t hear if the world ended around me. And that is what I did. I got to the office, told them I had my big girl pants on, that on their say-so I would start playing the music and would keep my eyes shut, and they could pull out the ear bud when they were ready for me to return. IT WORKED! I was ecstatic! The recovery seemed to be going well. So well in fact that I got overly confident and went out to a plant nursery with my sister on my 2nd full day of recovery. We stopped at a fast food joint for a treat and although all I’d had up to that point was water, I had a dish of what passes for ice cream at the golden arches. That was Saturday afternoon. By Sunday afternoon my entire mouth had erupted in viral sores. Had I been able to swallow pills I’d have killed myself to end the pain. I searched for every home remedy I could find to find some relief. I sent my husband out with a list of items to find – a medical scavenger hunt if you will. Ask Honour about that whole ordeal. On Tuesday I was texting with her and pleading to die. Finally on Wednesday the sores were healing a trifle, the OTC remedies were stopping the pain, and my husband no longer had to bar the door to keep me from heading to the river. And I thought “I can’t do this again.” Sure enough it was the same result – displaysia.

BC sleeping on my lap

BC sleeping on my lap

You know the story. It came back this year. The surgeon is sure it must be caused by my tongue rubbing on my teeth. We have tried 2 different mouth guards, and he has ground down the teeth. I don’t actually believe that but I don’t have any other idea. I knew I’d have to call the surgeon and get it removed. I knew I could get by with Komuso’s help. I knew I could not eat or drink anything after the procedure. I would have to gargle with salt water every hour and follow that with a chaser of Rx mouthwash gargle. If I could make it through the first 24 hours of pain, and total gross-out from feeling stitches in my mouth, maybe I could avoid the sores. This is the year of covid19. We sat in the parking lot until it was my turn to come in the side door, wearing my mask and gloves, carrying only my iPod, spare battery, and phone. They checked my temperature at the door. I had to sign 2 different forms avowing I did not have covid19 nor had I been in any contact with anyone who had it. I hadn’t put the pen down before they were disinfecting the counter top. They disinfected the chair and the counters in the room when I entered. Everyone had face shields and gloves and coverups. Yeah, really adds to the calming effort when you can’t really see faces or smiles. 😦 And for me – do you know how WEIRD it felt to remove my mask in front of these strangers???? Amazing at how fast we can be conditioned. I asked it there was any magic wand to prevent the sores this year. The surgeon said that they really get triggered by stress. Sigh. I knew that. I wanted the magic wand. This year the procedure was much shorter than in the past – I didn’t really even have time to disappear into the music. Apparently part of what I thought was “it” was actually scar tissue. We’re waiting to hear the biopsy results. I’m sure they will be the same as the previous years. I asked the doctor if we could laser it next year. We know what it is, we don’t need to biopsy. He said, yeah, that he was thinking the same thing. I was fairly brave. I did end up crying when they give me the needles for the local. Trust me – it hurts and the music hadn’t started yet.

I’m on Day 3 of recovery. So far no sores. The pain was there as expected on the first day, but I kept popping the pain pills, and kept an ice pack to my cheek, and sipped some iced water. That’s how I spent the first 8 hours home. Then I fell asleep and was out for 21 hours. I might wear my big girl pants but they only cover the outside – the inside still goes through the pre-surgery days of fear and anxiety, the actual trauma of the needles and stitches and pain. And of course – I headed into it worn down, as are we all, by life in a pandemic. I still can’t quite chew food, and I’m still more tired than I’d like. My head is still very fuzzy. Spoke to my retired doctor who said, as he has said for year: “You have crapped up ears.” Or some equally technical explanation. I described the odd kind of whooshing or maybe it’s clicking or maybe it’s some other sound I can’t quite identify that happens when I move my head. But not always. And how I’m hearing music in silence. It appears that besides all the other joys I’ve acquired as I’ve aged, I may also suffer from tinnitus. The ‘music’ in silence is not too bad and I’ve had that awhile. It’s that whoosh/drumbeat/whatever when I move my head. He thinks that may be aggravated by the recent procedure and that it might fade as everything else comes back to normal. I hope so. It adds to the general fuzziness from being off schedule and off diet.

I know that in the scheme of things, something like this falls under the self-indulgent category of “first world problems”. I’m fortunate that I have a great RL support team. And that I have my SL escape. You’ll find me there tonight. Calli will be playing big band and jive. I wonder if I’m well enough yet to have a cocktail?

BC blissfully sleeping on my lap

BC blissfully sleeping on my lap – doesn’t that face just soothe whatever ails you?

You Can Go Home Again

Ahuva and Bamboo

Bamboo and me relaxing at home

I’ve been reading a LOT, although mostly books that do not challenge and are not edifying and ARE an attempt at escapism. I’ve watched more TV in the last 2 months than I have probably watched in the last 5 years combined – I’m NOT a big TV watcher. I haven’t been able to work in the garden and see the neighbors working in their gardens or folks taking walks. I confess – I was lonely. What do you do if you are lonely and want people and music and company but you are practicing separation and isolation? You go home to SecondLife.

I know that a lot of the folks who follow this blog started following long after my SL days. You seem to enjoy my musings on my cats, my garden, life in general, work, the weather and all those other aspects of what is also known as IRL – “in real life”. This blog started as a chronicle of my adventures in SL. It was a marvelous time. I was privileged to not only enjoy SL in my private life but could work and build and develop as part of my professional career as well. But time moves on, people take new jobs, people die, get new interests, have other obligations. *rueful smile* Gaming laptops age. All of those things happened and I stopped going into SL. It took me a few years to surrender my land. I was paying around $40 a month, I think, for something I never used. I was never able to convince myself to give up my premium status, however. I was paying $72 a year for that until this past payment when it rose to $100/yr. Even so, I could not make that break. I had a zillion rationalizations for why I should keep the account.

Mallory, Bill & Drake

Mallory, Bill and Drake (Bill is the white one)

I’d been chatting via social media with a friend from those good old SL days and we agreed to try to meet inworld. She had a new avatar, a new life, new friends, new everything there. Last night I went ‘home’. *laughing* Good grief, I’d forgotten SO MUCH. First, my pool with my ducks was making SO MUCH NOISE it was making me crazy. Why did I ever think pool sounds were a good idea? I knew I had to open the item, find the script that made the noise and stop it, but could not remember how to do it. I’ve also realized that at some point when we moved from our home on the water to our treetop home, Drake dyed his feathers yellow. He used to be white. I had 2 white ducks and one yellow and now I have 2 yellow ducks and one white one. I asked Drake why and he said he needed a new look for a new home. Bill, as usual, was totally oblivious to everything.

Sean and Ahuva

Ahuva and Sean, If I want to keep my avatar somewhat aligned with my body, I’m going to need to add a lot more width. 🙂

I did a little better at moving around and getting my panda, Bamboo, to come back and join me. Thank goodness my friend came inworld and helped me remember how to stop scripts, manage sound. Wow. Did she look different. I knew she had a new avatar, but avatar structure and movement have improved immensely since I was there last. Her fingers MOVED! My fingers are very blocky looking. We sat and talked and talked (yes, talked, we both went to voice, not just text chat). She promised to meet me again and take me shopping for a new body, new head, new hair and lots of new clothes!!!! I’m so excited! 🙂

Ahuva at Smokestack

Sitting at the bar at Smokestack, listening to Noma

While we were talking other friends logged in and saw that I was logged in. I got several IMs saying hello and *hug*. I accepted a TP from a friend to a performance going on by one of the musicians I always liked – Grace McDonnough. In this case TP means Teleport, NOT toilet paper. 🙂 I had a great time talking to my friend there, and hearing Grace’s singing. From there I headed over to Prim Economy to hear Komuso Tokugawa, who is one of my top 2 favorite performers in SL. I still listen to his music (which I had downloaded). I made a new friend there as we shared conversation about horses and shoes. The inworld versions of both have apparently improved as much as the avatars. She says that when you are riding a horse inworld you actually have the natural movement of a horse (you used to simply move forward with no rise and fall). I’m extremely excited to try riding in SL again. My good friend Calli was inworld. I managed to get over to Tribeca to catch the very last song of her set. Since it was Friday, and it was Tribeca, of course the closing song was “Hallelujah” by Leonard Cohen. It’s ALWAYS Hallelujah. Last night’s rendition was by Jeff Buckley.

Noma

Noma Falta

I went back in on Saturday, too. This time I remembered how to adjust my draw rate (how far away you can see items) and quality of detail. Slowly but surely some of the tricks are coming back. I caught up with another dear friend from the “old days”. I also got to hear Noma Falta live. I swear she gets better all the time. She was rocking it out at Smokestack. That venue was new for me. I like it. Had good seating, good dancing scripts, lots of people there. I did see one or two familiar names in the audience. It was another lovely evening. I sat there sipping my wine, listening to great music, chatting with my friend, catching up on all that has been happening. I was home. 🙂

Noma rocking the crowd at Smokestack

The crowd at Smokestack, dancing to Noma

The Day of The Bugs

We have had a lot to concern us on this trip. In BC we worried about the cats and the fires. In Alberta we worried about cats and shade. In Saskatchewan, it was the Day of the Big Bugs. Also known as “Day of the Squeegee”. I regret I have no good pictures for you of all the bugs smashed on the windshield. My most sincere apologies for that lack.

We woke on Day 3 happy in the knowledge that we were going to Calli’s for breakfast. She fed us a feast!!! The most delicious pancakes I have ever had in my life – ricotta pancakes with orange zest. Also – sensational coffee. She said it was a BC company called Kicking Horse. I really hope I can find that online or I’m making Honour move back to Delta and mail me coffee. Hmmm. Honour has just informed me that she won’t oblige (oh and so what else is new). Oh Clair……. 🙂 Not only did Calli feed us magnificently but she took all the animals’ bedding and washed it!!! ahuva's tiaraWe’re not sure if Fergus, Duff and Jamie cared but Honour and I were thrilled. I also got to use the wifi and managed to do the prior tl;dr post. I also got to wear my tiara for breakfast! We had much fun chatting with Calli and her husband. Calli has 2 fantastic dog sculptures in her front yard, made by the daughter of a neighbor. My photos do not do them justice but they are truly magnificent. Calli and her husband also helped us plan out travel stops for the next few days. We already had a hotel reservation for that evening but they recommended we get one for the next night as well for when we stopped in Wawa.

I began calling places in Wawa and every pet-friendly hotel was booked. I really hate traveling because you have to do things like make reservations. If I can’t get the reservation I want in a maximum of 2 calls I start getting very unhappy. Some might even say cranky. calli's sculpturesIt is at times like that, that I turn to my travel-agent-in-the-sky. Or wherever she might be. I use ‘sky’ because of this very funny story that Honour could tell you if she would only do her own posting. But mostly she dictates to me what she thinks I should be writing. But it’s a great story about her mother and the GPS. Maybe someday she’ll tell you. ANYWAY, my TAITS is my sister. My sister not only excels at hunting down the best reservation she even seems to enjoy the process. I called her and said please please help me. She, being the fantastic sister she is, said sure. So we could finally start off again on our journey. I took a picture of Fergus and Duff and their excitement before we left Calli’s house. (In case my photo fails to capture their joy, you can notice the clean cat bed under which they are hiding.) They spend a lot of time like that. As with many parents taking children on long journeys, we are disappointed that they are failing to appreciate this great cultural opportunity we have given them.

Day 3 was a lot of nothing very exciting and a lot of dead bugs. You can tell because I have almost no photos for this post. close up of dogs I only had 2 on-the-road pictures, and one of them was a sign I saw as we pulled out of the gas station. I’d like to point out to all of you who have asked me – well what is it you DO do? that I EXCEL at squeegeeing. Honour pumped the gas but I cleaned the windows, the headlights and the license plate. They have VERY big bugs in Saskatchewan. What we did notice, besides the bugs, was that no one else on the road appeared to be heading east. They were all going west. We wondered what they all knew that we did not. Even the trains were going the opposite direction. I finally managed to have my camera in hand when one was approaching. I don’t know why I find the trains so appealing but seeing them come with that big headlight shining made me smile. And worry because they too were heading west…..

We were booked into a Super 8 in Kenora. We’d made pretty good time and were looking forward to having a chance to have some dinner and relax before collapsing into bed. cats under cat bed Our GPS, however, felt we needed a bit more excitement after that long bug-filled ride. She (I have named Honour’s GPS Gypsy2 – because MY GPS is named Gypsy) insisted that we needed to turn left to reach the Super 8. I was driving and refused to listen as we were on a bridge over a lake. I crossed the bridge, turned around and headed back, thinking perhaps I’d simply been slow to respond but no, now she wanted me to turn right into the lake. I didn’t remember the reservation saying anything about needing a boat and since Molly (the car, you remember) doesn’t have pontoons, we decided to ignore Gypsy2 and try to find someplace else to stop. We drove on and tried to get our phones to also cooperate and pulled into a gas station. There we learned that the Super 8 was just ahead on the left, after 2 more bridges. .

We pulled into the Super 8 and noticed the adjoining restaurant. I checked into the hotel while Honour fed the cats. I dumped everything in the room and set up my computer to charge. Honour started knocking at the door, despite the fact I had brought her her key. Her key, apparently, did not work. We figured this was no big deal since we weren’t going to be coming and going and we headed out to dinner at the restaurant. train keeps a rollin'The hotel clerk had told us the restaurant closed at 11 or maybe 1 am on a Saturday night. There WERE lights on in the building. We could see people at tables. But the doors were locked. We were tired and hungry so we walked to the other door and tried that. Which was also locked. It was 9:50pm. We finally looked AT the door and saw a sign: Due to unforeseen circumstances we are closed. Okay, that really demoralized us. As we headed back around the building, we saw 4 people come OUT the door. We called to them and asked if the restaurant was open. They said they seemed to be the very last people in the building. We walked back to the hotel where the desk clerk suggested we should order pizza. We thought this was an acceptable idea AND he gave Honour a new key. We walked upstairs (there was no elevator – we needed to walk up and down 2 flights of stairs which were located at the end of the hall furthest from our room). We got to the room and Honour tried her new key. It didn’t work. I took her key thinking maybe it just didn’t like her but it didn’t work for me, either. So I took out my key and guess what – mine no longer worked either. This was even more dispiriting. I gave up and said to Honour that she and Jamie (who we’d retrieved from the car after our non-dinner) could go and get new keys because I actually had one trip down and back ahead of her and I was carrying several water bottles. Honour came back with the young desk clerk, to whom we’d gotten very attached by this point, with 2 NEW keys. horse fair signHe had confided to Honour that he really hoped it was the keys and not the lock because he didn’t know how to FIX the lock.

Honour took her new new key and tried to open the door. It didn’t open. To his credit, the young man did NOT laugh in our faces. He simply said – you have the key the wrong way. Oooookay. In our defense – we were very very tired and hungry. Of course, by this time, it was too darn late to call for pizza. Honour and Jamie went to bed, but I, your intrepid narrator, stayed up writing a post and editing pictures. (I was not going to be this nice to you in the future).

Horseshoes and Dinosaurs

I do not think that I’m a sound sleeper but either I am or Honour and Jamie are the quietest roomies I’ve ever had. Horseshoe CanyonMy cat makes more noise walking up the carpeted hallway than Jamie and Honour make getting up and out in the morning. The morning report on Duff and Fergus was good (I will spare you the detailed descriptions of input/output but be assured WE are monitoring these events.) We all took a relaxed approach to getting out, had a very solid breakfast in the hotel restaurant. We decided that we would take in some sightseeing on the way to Regina. As you can see, we have now begun to PLAN this trip. Up to now, our plan was “Go East”. We figured we’d fill in the details later. After Golden we figured we needed to fill in some details sooner. horseshow canyon 2We have begun booking hotels in advance and deciding where we might stop and refresh & refuel. We would be going close to Drumheller, where the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Paleontology. To get to Drumheller from Calgary, you go past Horseshoe Canyon.

Horseshoe Canyon is a region of the badlands along Highway 9. It gets its name from its Horseshoe shape. (I don’t want to be disrespectful, but have you noticed the lack of creativity in the naming of geography? “Delta”. “Horseshoe Canyon” “Grand Canyon” “Rockies” ) One of the descriptions mentioned that there were hoodoos in the canyon. I LOVED the hoodoos in Bryce Canyon from the first moment I saw a picture of them. The canyon is RIGHT THERE off the road. We pulled in and I got out to go to the overlook and take pictures. Honour stayed in the car, running the a/c for the cats. 4 way stop in nowhere There was no shade and although it was only mid-morning it was HOT. I was taking pics with my camera when my phone rang. Really? Who is calling me? I pull out my phone and it’s my sister! I say “hello???” And I hear “Is there a reason you are heading north instead of east??? That’s NOT the way to Regina!” I start laughing. She and my husband have been tracking me since I left the house on Monday. She knew we were heading to Regina but there I was – NORTH of Rt 1 (Transcanada Highway). I think this is extremely funny and incredibly sweet. *smile* I assured her that we were indeed where we meant to be. silos While I was enjoying that chat my husband appeared at their door so I got to chat with him as well.

We got back in the car and headed to Drumheller. There are dinosaurs everywhere. Every store and corner gets in on the act. It reminded me of the painted cows many years ago that appeared all over Chicago – CowParade We made our way to the museum only to find a completely full parking lot. We headed down to the overflow lot – a big empty dirt/stone lot in the full blazing sun. We began to rig up shade in the car for the cats and dog. We got all the way done doing so and looked at each other, looked at the car, looked at the sun and thought – there is no way this can end happily. welcome to drumhellerThen we argued about which one of would go to the museum and who would stay with the cats. “After you, Alphonse.” “No, no Gaston, after YOU”. We took down the make-shift curtains, got back in the car and headed to town, looking for someplace to eat. We got side-tracked by a visitor center where there is a VERY large dinosaur. We decided not to climb up into its mouth but did take pictures. There was a lovely green square with fountains and tables and food trucks, but dogs were not permitted. I considered trying to cram Jamie into my bag but Jamie told me that she was not really that interested in that field anyway. badlandsWe walked back to the car and headed to the main street. Honour had a wonderful erudite (not) conversation with a young woman one of the stores, trying to find a leash for Jamie (whose leash is somewhere in the car) and then trying to find a place to eat. Should Honour ever decide to post a blog she can tell you the conversation, but let it suffice to say that it was not especially helpful. We decided to head out of town and as we did so we found a Subway. Honour was driving. We had to cross a major intersection to get to the Subway, and just in front of the entrance was the merging traffic making right turns to go the direction we were going. badlands 2Honour, being Canadian and polite, stopped to allow the merging car to go first (even though she had the right of way. In NJ, where we are never that polite, there would have been no question as to who was going to take over that spot. 🙂 ). The merging car happened to be a police car. THEY knew the rules of the road. 🙂 As Honour stopped, trying to figure out how to cut in front of the car and enter the parking lot, the office was gesturing furiously out the window for her to GO! So go she did and pulled into the lot. The police car pulled in as well but we went separate directions. badlands 3Honour went first to get food while I stayed in the car running the a/c. Of course you KNOW who was right behind her in line. 🙂 The police officers.

After lunch we headed out of town and got back on Highway 1, heading east, which we thought would be reassuring to my sister. 🙂 We do stop a lot for water, for gas, for Jamie to walk about. I’d like to say that the trip to Regina was beautiful and interesting but that would not be completely truthful. I love mountains. I love water. The prairie was interesting for about 10 minutes. After that, not so much. There is a lot of nothing out there. green dinosaurLots and lots of grass and horizon. It was out there on the endless nothing that I appreciated WHY we filled the tank when it was only half empty. It is a very very long way between rest stops. I think one of the ‘highlights’ of the trip through the prairie (which I keep calling ‘plains’ to Honour’s great frustration) was the 4 way Stop. Yes, in the middle of nothing, where there was another road intersecting the Transcanada highway, we had a 4 way stop. I’m from NJ and there is absolutely nothing I can say in this blog about a 4 way stop in the middle of nowhere where there is no one and nothing. 🙂 I did, however, like moo’ing at all the cows. bench dinosaur This is a family tradition, begun by my sister. If it has 4 legs and is in a field along the road, you moo. There are some mighty odd looking cows out there but hey – 4 legs – we moo. 🙂

There were several storm cells south and east of us, but we were very lucky and skirted about the edges of the bad weather. We had a little rain, but not much. We could see the dark clouds and rain in the distance and were quite happy to not have to drive through all that darkness. We glimpsed rainbows several times in the distance, as well as wind turbines. I find the turbines graceful and elegant. I noticed that many of the streams running through the fields had a lot of white around the banks; other streams had none. big dinosaurI can’t figure out what it might be but I’m hoping someone reading this might be able to tell me. We spent a lot of time walking about in Drumheller and didn’t see any real dinosaurs. But we’d apparently spent enough time there that we did not get to Regina and Calli until 9pm.

Calli welcomed us and introduced us to the family: daughter, grandson, husband, spaniel puppy (i think it was a spaniel), 2 greyhounds and 1 Irish wolfhound. They were all lovely and welcoming. Calli made us a lovely dinner and we had a great time chatting. Calli is someone who appreciates my Ahuva-ness – she had a Disney tiara for me. It sparkled and had flashing lights. I wore it through dinner. She invited us for breakfast the next morning and we accepted. We know a good thing when we see it.

rain on the horizonThe hotel was only 10 minutes from her house and we got there and parked uneventfully – no hail, no rain. It was a bit of an adventure finding the elevator up as it was around the corner from the stairs. But we were in the bowels of the building and there was no way I was going to walk up at that point. Our room was lovely, upscale and wonderfully comfortable. It was midnight and the 3 of us crawled into beds and fell asleep, happy in the knowledge that we were going to see Calli in the morning.
rainbow and wind turbines

white stuff around the water

sunset through the rain

On a Streak

Winston Calli and SolI’m on a roll. I’ve made it inworld 2 nights in a row. I can’t remember the last time I did that. It was wonderful to see friends again! I got to Tribeca on Friday night just in time for the final wrap up – Tom Waits and Leonard Cohen. Calli played “Jersey Girl” for me – her theme song for me. *smile* I requested Leonard Cohen’s “Closing Time” in memory of Lalo. It was one of his favorite tunes for our Friday night music fest. There were other friends there as well.

Saturday night I was still awake after we’d had a Big Bang Theory marathon. Krysss relaxingEveryone else headed to sleep but I wasn’t quite ready. I logged in and joined the folks at Calli’s Eclectica. Winston was there!!!! Haven’t seen him in months and months. It was great to catch up. 🙂 I made him get up and dance because as I told him – SL is pretty much the only place where I CAN dance these days. We’ve upped the PT exercises and my foot hurts. That’s GOOD. Hurt is good in this case, but I’m not quite ready to dance.

4th nightI guess that’s the upside of long holiday weekends. I get to sleep late or nap (because kittens don’t LIKE me to sleep LATE) and so I have energy late at night when “the gang” all start rezzing inworld. It’s also Chanukah so I try to log in each day to light my Chanukiah. Lalo made it and it is beautiful. Bamboo and I have been lighting the candles, but it’s not quite the same. 2 years ago the 3 of us lit them together. Last year I was at Lalo’s to light the Chanukiah and say the prayers together. Bamboo and I miss him very much and appreciate having his graceful elegant Chanukiah.

Winter = SL

getting ready for the holidayThe temperature is dropping. (Okay, not today and tomorrow – we’re supposed to hit 65. But it DID snow last week.) Christmas music is on the radio. My neighbors turned on their holiday lights. Thanksgiving has come and gone (leaving a LOT of extra weight in its trail 😦 ). So that means it must be winter. I notice that I seem to be logging in to SL a lot more than I’ve done in the past few months. Is it the weather? Is it that FL things have settled down a bit? I don’t know why exactly, but I do seem to be logging more time inworld.

Yesterday I responded to a call for avatars – human and dressed in vintage clothing. That seemed simple enough. I got Calli to help me with the clothing. She took me to Old Time Prims. VERY cool store. I bought several outfits AND hair. Yes, I know. I actually bought different hair. Let’s face it. My usual Ahuva hair is NOT vintage. After we were dressed I took Calli with me to the call. *grin* Once there we were sworn to secrecy, bound with horrific oaths, and basically warned with dire and drastic punishments if I told you what we did. I would tell you anyway, understand, but then I’d have to kill you (as the saying goes) and I’ve grown rather fond of you. *grin* So all I can say is tune in to Honour.

Blue prezziesOn the other hand I CAN tell you about the nifty gifts I received at a concert. I went to hear Taunter Goodnight at Effie’s Designs’ Christmas party. Effie had a gift box near the stage. You can see all the fun things she had packed into: a fireplace, a blanket, a lamp, a chair. Bamboo claimed the chair of course. 🙂

Speaking of prezzies, Calli always thinks of me. She understands that Christmas is not my holiday, even though I DO enjoy the excitement. So I have my first Chanukah gift – my VERY cool Chanukiah Hat. You can’t see in the above photo(because I’m too lazy to figure out again how to make a video) but the dreidels actually spin (turn). 🙂 I love it. It certainly does make a statement, doesn’t it? If you wish to make a Chanukah statement, you can find the [TMH] Chanukah Top Hat at The Mad Hattery.

thinking about the holidaysSo after spending hours, yes HOURS, inworld, I needed to settle down and contemplate the upcoming holidays. I need Chanukah candles. I should probably think about a holiday card. I wonder if the ducks will cooperate this year; some years they have been quite unobliging. Are there any good holiday parties going on? I wonder if I can convince Prad to do a reunion again this year…….

Coming Into Focus

I try to pretend I’m not, but I am. Superstitious. Like Hamlet, I believe there are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamed of in Horatio’s philosophy. I see connections that may or may not be there. I see causal events that might not have been the catalyst. I believe in karma. The past year was perhaps one of the most difficult of my life. I couldn’t seem to reach my inner energy, to see where I was going, to see clearly.

Somewhere in the last year, my portrait in SL blurred. It’s my profile picture, taken by the inimitable Callipygian Christensen. I have had it hanging on my bedroom wall for a few years. You know how it is with things you see daily – you stop “seeing” them at some point. I began having a vague notion that the photo was blurred, but I thought it was a matter of impatience on my part – not waiting for it to rez all the way before moving on. Then I realized that no, it NEVER rezzed clearly anymore. I thought about it, did nothing. Finally several weeks ago I mentioned it to Calli. She thought it sounded very odd indeed. But we never got around to going to look at the picture together. Time passed and it was Chanukah. Lalo came to light candles and he said yes, your portrait is definitely blurred. More time.

Finally came a moment when we were all inworld with time to decipher the situation. Calli, Lalo, Oura and I stood in the room and saw a blurred photo. We couldn’t fix it. We were using 3 different viewers. All blurred. I think it was Calli who figured out that if she rezzed the texture of the photo (which she still had) that the photo came into focus. I think Lalo called up my profile and when THAT rezzed, the photo on the wall came into focus as well. Calli gave me the texture, I rezzed it. When it rezzed, the portrait came into focus. No, we don’t know why. I will tell you that I can still go into the room and the portrait is blurred. But now I have my magic charm. I rez the texture and the portrait rezzes too.

I don’t think that I have a magic charm for my day-to-day world. But that portrait has also come back into focus in the last few weeks. The energy is back, the clarity. The inner and outer Ahuva are aligned and focused. And I like what I see. 🙂

Bonafide Aries

I’m not much for museums. I’m very bad at sight seeing. I usually have a good time when I go, but my attention span is limited. On the other hand, I DO like seeing new things: pictures, art, places, buildings. It’s a matter of duration, I suppose. So SL plays wonderfully for me in that respect. Many of my friends are very artistic, very into art and building and creating. They participate in art shows both as artist and public. That’s how I get MY education – they bring me along with them. It’s easy for me to get there, I don’t have to do the planning, and I can leave when my mind wanders. More often than NOT, however, I tend to stay longer that I would have guessed.

As you already know from reading this blog, I will follow Callipygian Christensen just about anywhere she is DJ’ing. So when she sent out a notice that she was DJ’ing an opening at the wonderful DNA Art and Music Fusion gallery in Captive Oasis, I was there. Once there, I discovered she was spinning…. *gasp*….*horror*… JAZZ! /me clears throat, determined not to elaborate. You might have thought that I’d immediately tp out. But this was the opening for Bonafide Aries’ exhibit.

Bonafide Aries makes wonderful pictures. You can see some of them in these photos, but I urge you to visit the gallery and view them in more detail. You can pick up Bona’s bio card, too:

Primary to all Bonafide Aries 2D and 3D creations is a story, an inquiry, or a statement. The stories vary and may change through the devolpment of a work. Behind the story is a goal of complete creation from scuplty to skin. Currently Bona’s works are a blending of developing skills. The poses sculpts and textures are original creations. The works begin as freehand sketches, and where necessary augmented shapshots. Graphic editors: gimp, photoshop. are used to enhance the work and give it RL textures for Secondlife display.
The RL Bona was taught the fundamentals of art in RL by a mother who painted, a father who was a graphic designer, and a tribe of wild bohemians who desecrated country barns and refurbed condemned houses (Bona carried the crowbars) of course bonafide’s RL grown up career has nothing to do with art. It is Secondlife, and graphic editors gimp and photoshop that have reborn his artistic interests.

I believe that Bonafide’s work is showcased through the month of January, but it may be closing after the 3rd week of January. So even though I was slow to post, you should be prompt in stopping by.

I love the DNA Art and Musica Fusion gallery. I’ve been there before for exhibits. There are many levels and it’s a lovely space for exhibitions. The owners, Dyce Underwood and Armany Thursday, are gracious and warm hosts. They showcase both visual and musical artists. They state their goal thusly:

DNA Art and Music Fusion is a live music and art exhibition/gallery space featuring SL’s finest artists and musicians.The primary vision for our project “DNA” is to raise awareness, appreciation, and patronage of fine art and live music here in Second Life and to strengthen the arts community as a whole as our artists and patrons get to know one another finding common interests in the arts and ways to collaborate with each other on ideas and projects of their own.**Where Art and Music come to life**

Again – time is running out. This exhibit is over in the next week or two. It’s well worth a visit.

Erev New Year’s Eve


Following Samoa’s lead, Calli’s Friday Night TriBeCa Blues Regulars did away with December 30th and jumped right to December 31st. We had decided last week that we wished to spend New Year’s Eve together, but that other commitments would make that difficult. So we agreed to celebrate New Year’s Eve early, a practice run as it were. Or, in the Jewish tradition of holidays beginning at sundown the night before, we would celebrate Erev New Year’s Eve. /me grins. See – slowly, Lalo and I are turning you to our path…. *giggle*

Friday nights at Tribeca may be my favorite time in SL. Calli is a fantastic DJ. When she is at TriBeCa she spins an eclectic set of vocal jazz, although that’s mostly a starting point. We have ranged far and wide from that jump-off. The other wonderful thing about Friday nights at Tribeca is that Calli can’t tell time. *grin* So although she is booked from 7-9pm SLT, we have NEVER EVER stopped at 9pm. Oh fine, maybe once. But I don’t actually REMEMBER that. I’m merely conceding that it is possible. 🙂 Last night her sense of time was even more dilute than usual, which is as it should be for a celebration.

We did miss some of our regulars (and you KNOW who you are and you KNOW that I will scold you) but there were many new folk who joined in. Conversation is usually lively and interesting. Like the music, we head down some interesting side roads. Eva Cassidy’s “Over The Rainbow” had finished playing and Louis Armstrong’s “What a Wonderful World” began. Tor Karlsvalt commented that it was a really good song for SL. Then he added: should be an anthem. I think that’s brilliant. In so many ways, this song sums up what SL is for me – a wonderful world.

It was a wonderful, magical, lovely evening. For those of you who weren’t there, please come and join us some Friday at TriBeCa Blues. For those of you who were there – thank you thank you thank you. Wishing you and yours a happy healthy new year to come, filled with joy and success.

What A Wonderful World
Writer: GEORGE DAVID WEISS, GEORGE DOUGLAS, BOB THIELE

I see trees of green, red roses too
I see them bloom for me and you
And I think to myself what a wonderful world.

I see skies of blue and clouds of white
The bright blessed day, the dark sacred night
And I think to myself what a wonderful world.

The colors of the rainbow so pretty in the sky
Are also on the faces of people going by
I see friends shaking hands saying how do you do
They’re really saying I love you.

I hear babies crying, I watch them grow
They’ll learn much more than I’ll never know
And I think to myself what a wonderful world
Yes I think to myself what a wonderful world.

Celebrating a Blues Man

It has been a few months since Bear Rasmuson passed away. Many of the SL Blues clubs where he would DJ still display his poster. We remember him often, talk about him, toast his memory. In that way, Bear still lives because he lives in us. This Friday his good friend Callipygian Christensen is holding a benefit in his memory. Here is the information.

CELEBRATING A BLUES MAN – REMEMBERING BEAR

Friday November 11th
4 PM SLT – midnight (or later)
at Calli’s place, just down the hill from Bear’s SL home.

4 – 5 PM Calli will have the stream playing blues, come on over, throw down a blanket on the lawn, have a picnic
5 – 6 PM Ziffy Zarf – live music
6 – 7 PM Kyle Bronsdon – live music
7 – 8 PM DickPinelli
8 – 9 PM Calli Christensen
9 – 10 PM Fiery Otaared
10 – ? Bard Wasp – slow blues

Please join us – whether for a few minutes or a few hours – to celebrate a man who touched so many of us so deeply; not to mourn, but to share the bond he created among us using what he loved – the blues.
Bear was my friend for many years and I know this is how he would like to be remembered- not with crying, not with drama, not with dancing girls dressed like him performing as a tribute band – just with an evening of blues lovers sharing the blues and helping a good cause in the process.

Bear left us in June, and at the time many of you asked where you could send donations in his memory. His son asked me to choose a blues-related charity that Bear would have approved of, and arrange whatever activity in-world that I felt appropriate. Talking with Fiery, another of Bear’s friends, we decided to arrange a celebration of Bear – a full evening of the blues he loved, with all donations and tips raised donated to The Blues Foundation – HART Fund in his name.

From their website: “The HART fund provides assistance to Blues musicians and their families in times of great financial need due to medical emergencies. Donations to the HART Fund are dedicated 100% to artist relief efforts … and have been used to pay medical bills, obtain needed medical care and assist with funeral expenses.” Bear often commented on how many blues musicians struggled with poverty, health care issues etc and I feel this is a foundation he would have appreciated receiving a donation in his name.

You can find more information about the Foundation and the HART Fund here: www.blues.org If you can’t join us, but wish to contribute to the donation in his name, contact Callipygian Christensen for information on how to donate. I will be matching L$25,000 donated, and so will Fiery – so potentially 100,000 lindens for a great cause. Bear would be proud 🙂
Calli


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