You may recall that on New Year’s Day, my alt Clover decided to try her hand at virtual farming (with the Digital Farm System, or DFS). About 3300 avatars are part of the official group, and these avatars grow virtual crops, raise virtual livestock, sell their produce or else use it in recipes to cook food, and then eat said food to replenish Energy Points (EP), which are depleted during various farm chores. I was told early on by a pair of experienced farmers, “You won’t make your fortune, not for a while anyway” and had no idea at the time just how serious they were.
Ladies, Gentlemen, Friends, Neighbors, and Avatars of all ages and sizes! You’re invited to come see the debut of a show I’ve spent weeks building from the ground up. “8 Bits We Have Heard on High” is a retro Christmastime fireworks and music spectacular, full of light, color, and nostalgia. This is an all-ages friendly show in cozy Glenwalker Park, in the modern city of Lionheart, which starts at 5PM SLT and runs for about 20 minutes (so don’t be late or you’ll miss it!)
Please wear a low-impact avatar to the show and be considerate of other viewers.
Don’t miss the explosive pixellated fun TONIGHT, December 1, at 5 PM SLT!
It’s been less than 24 hours since my last login.
I don’t know how I feel about it. I’m still sorting it out. Embarrassed and ashamed, I guess. And eager to do it again.
The thing that really hurt me about SL was the time sink. Hours and hours and hours would melt away and feel like 15 minutes. And those hours– hours that could have been spent working or dealing with issues IRL– would be gone, never to return.
So. If I’m going to do this. IF!! If I am going to do this, I need a way to keep track of time. To set a timer, and stick with it. To do the things I have to do FIRST, like pay the bills or arrange the interview or do the chores or finish the commission project or whatever it is I need to be an adult and take care of first.
I miss the Grid so, so, desperately much right now.
It’s so hard, day after day in this world.
I’m getting by. I’m safe. I’ve got people around me.
But I miss the beautiful Otherworld and its bubble and its magic so much. I miss being Mistletoe so deeply. I want so badly to take a break from this world that words fail me. I’m on the wagon, but fuck, it’s so hard.
If you take Second Life, but make it quicker and easier to customize your newbie avatar, throw in some free coinage and a “level” system, and remove all ability to create your own content?
You get Avakin Life, a thing I was foolish enough to check out today.
Differences from SL: Free money when you start out, no way to sell content (because you can’t make content). Avatar choices are human and kind of elf (yay). Less laggy. Can’t fly. Animations are AWFUL all around; definitely no MoCap happening here. The environments are all very modern human world, not much in the way of fantasy worlds or NPIRL options.
Similarities: Dancing, teenagers, and Brazilians everywhere. Total strangers try to hit you up even if you don’t speak the same language. You can play for free, but you gotta pay in for the good shit.
In years past, I’ve explored SLB (Second Life Birthday) expos and excitedly reported back to you all about the true awesomesauce I witnessed.
But this year, I’m on the wagon. I’m fighting the pull to log back in, which is stronger this time of year than any other. I love me some SLBs. Just… everything about them (except lag) is just the culmination of everything I loved about SecondLife: the creative displays, the excitement, and the people I’ve met and friends I’ve made.
This year, I won’t be able to share a Green Guide with my favorites of the favorites to lead you to… this year, YOU have to tell ME.
So! Today was Opening Day. I long for some pictures and descriptions. I want to know what you were enraptured and fascinated by. If Mistletoe were there with you, where would you take her?
So the next Second Life Birthday is in planning stages. 13 already. Damn. Does that mean that this June would be my 10th rez-day?
SLBs are the hardest time of year for me to keep away from SL, because they’re some of the best of what the grid has to offer all in one convenient spot: a font of creativity and genius, without the Lab putting their dirty hands on it. It’s hard not to miss that; I would be lying if I said I didn’t.
And there are people I miss a lot too. I try to keep up on emails, or chatting with them on Facebook or Twitter, but it’s really not as easy to keep that connection without the medium on which you made the connection in the first place. I want to, though. If you see this and haven’t heard from me in a while: I miss you.
I logged on my alts once, about two weeks or so ago, to shake them down for loose change. It was a little, just under a hundred bucks, and is helping us get through a tight spot. The spots are always so tight these days. My job isn’t going so great, but I’m working and trying to further myself in it. I can’t really afford my hobbies (SCA and LARP) anymore, either in money or in time.
I do have a Fiverr gig going on now, though. After playing Undertale (which a friend got me for Xmas) I’ve wanted to live in an 8bit world a while longer, so I fired up RPGMaker and now I make custom video-game greeting cards for five bucks a pop. Nothing too fancy, but cute as hell: a custom sprite of the recipient solves a puzzle, opens a door, and gets a personalized message from the sender. You should have a look! And if you’re on the evil Book of Faces, you should like my page and share the love!
I’m tempted, speaking of Fiverr, of doing machinima videos of firework greetings like I used to do. But that would mean investing myself in SL again and I don’t think I should do that.
Anyway, that’s what’s going on in my world. What’s going on in yours?
The moon is shining on the East Coast and the sun’s an hour away from setting where I am now. Right about now, all my SCA friends back in New England are gathering around their campfires for music and stories and tales of absent friends. And I’m the absent friend, wishing I was there now. Here it’s traffic and car alarms and motorcycles and piles and piles of loneliness.
Don’t know why I’m saying all this, except it feels like I’ll spill over if I don’t say something.
So back last April, not even a full page of blog entries ago, my love and my cat and I made the trip of a lifetime, towing a trailer behind a little Sunfire from the geographical center of Nowhere, Maine to the city of San Diego. We’d begin a whole new story of our lives. Only, halfway into the first chapter, an unexpected twist in the plot came.
Now, we’re going to pack it up and make the trip of a lifetime, again. We’re starting over, again. We’ve got so much to do, including getting rid of almost all of our worldly possessions (again), planning the route (again), job and apartment hunting (again).
But this time we’re not moving 3500 miles away from the campfires and the stories: we’re going back to them. Or, at least, within a day’s drive. We’re going to a place that himself knows and loves; a place that I hope I can get to know and learn to love. A place where someone as anxious about driving as I am, doesn’t have to drive to get around. A place with rain, and green grass, neither of which can be easily found in San Diego. I never knew how much I’d miss them both until three months without them.
We’re going home to Boston. Maybe I should say shipping up to Boston, like the Dropkick Murphys song.
Additionally, it’s July. If you’ve been along with me for the ride for some time now, you might know what that means. For those who don’t know or don’t recall, July tends to mark the low point in my interest in Second Life. Between having lots to do in RL and just some kind of seasonal cycle of interest, I simply don’t get into it as much. It’s long been my desire in SL to create something that can hold together without me there all the time to do it myself, and damned if the community in Philomenaville isn’t starting to do just that. Mind, I didn’t create that, not all on my own, not by a long shot, and I’m not the only one who maintains it either. And frankly, I like it that way. I like that it won’t collapse without me.
This weekend I’m supposed to relax and do some fucking off at the beach, because after that, we won’t have much fucking-off time at all.
EDIT: I got the URL wrong at the end! It’s http://second-pride.com , with a dash.
There’s a thing that might come that could DESTROY SECOND LIFE FOREVER AND I HAVE NO CONFIDENCE IN MY STUFF EVER LASTING AND OMG WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO IF THIS BECOMES OBSOLETE?!
In other words, the same thing that was said a hundred times before in Second Life.
So, Linden Lab is working on a new virtual world and most of the buzz I hear calls it SL 2.0 and of course that means THE END IS NEAR!!! for the Second Life that we all know and love (to hate).
There are so many things that can happen between now and then that I think it’s just ridiculous to panic about it. And just ask my husband, I’m really good at panicking about uncertainty in the future. I dreamed up some of the most colorful nightmare scenarios you’ll ever hear just before we packed up and moved across the country last April. And I’ll say what he said: if you have a nightmare scenario, it’s good to talk about it and get it out in the open, because it helps you see just how unlikely it really is when you hear it out loud.Do you really, sincerely, think, that the virtual world that’s been operating for 11 years now, is just going to close up unannounced in a few months and leave you without your land, your money, or your stuff? I don’t.
It’s likely that things will change. It’s likely that some things will become obsolete, or that some things that already are obsolete will be replaced. But the sky is not falling, any more than it did with mesh, or alpha layers, or merging with the Teen Grid, or Zindra. It’s foolish to not enjoy what you have today, out of fear that you might not have it tomorrow. In fact in my opinion it’s all the more reason to enjoy it today.