Archive for March, 2010

March 31st, 2010: Logan Porterfield

March 31, 2010

Today, Linden Labs pulled Viewer 2.0 out of Beta and made it official. I thought they weren’t going to release it until May. Surprise!

I woke to a call from my parents for our traditional morning “gab over coffee” across the miles. It’s an odd sort of day for me today; the day before the one-year anniversary of a good friend’s unexpected death, which brings to mind the deaths of both my grandmother in February and brother in August last year, and in recalling, I feel both empty and heavy with loss. My grandma always said death came in threes. Is it just a coincidence, or was she right? I’m sick as a dog and sitting at my desk in my lounging pajamas listening to the rain while I work. My dogs are camped out on their bed beside me. The coffee tastes good even with an impaired olfactory sense.

As I work, I wonder how I’ll feel in a few days, and if I’ll be up for doing anything for my partner’s and my ten-year anniversary. I smile thinking of her, and when I take a break from work, I buy her some new hair for her avatar. No, not for an anniversary present – don’t be obtuse! Just because. It’s a luxury and a privilege to be able to work at home. You can do things like that. You can also stop to write about your day for a stranger’s blogging project when you’re your own boss – but best of all – you can crawl back in bed and curl up with your warm and fluffy little dogs on days when you feel like crap, and that is precisely what I think I’ll be doing after I finish up the layer I’m working on.

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Logan Porterfield is a digital artist, philosophy student, writer, and former singer-songwriter in her first life. She’s the owner/designer of the urban apparel shop “LoPo Designs” in Second Life, and has recently resurrected her singing career in world. For more info, visit http://lopodesigns.com

March 30th, 2010: Gemma Mornington

March 30, 2010

Growing up I had a plan for how I wanted my life to turn out; graduating high school with honors, college, having my own boutique, married at 23, and kids by 25.  Obviously I knew things wouldn’t go exactly as planned, but I figured most of it would happen.  You don’t really expect for something to change your life so drastically that everything you know and want fades completely into the background.

I became chronically ill when I was 14.  Instead of going to school regularly, I began going to doctor visits regularly.  My health issues overshadowed and changed my direction.  I was forced to complete high school differently than your average teenager.  Because of this, I missed out on knowing how to handle social interactions.  My life continues to not go as I planned since I’m now 25 years old and still dealing with the constant pain and fatigue from my illnesses.

I found Second Life just by chance in 2007, but I didn’t actually start playing until the end of March 2008.  I didn’t expect a game to change my life, but seeing as it has been roughly two years, I can honestly say it has.  It has allowed me to live a life with good friends, laughter, shopping, and have real memories.  I still have a lot more to learn and more mistakes will probably be made, but that is the parallel between real life and Second Life.

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Gemma Mornington was born and raised in Houston, Texas.  She loves to lose herself in a good book and enjoys the company of her cat.   In Second Life, she is an aspiring clothing designer, has her own blog, Gemma’s Jewels, and is a new blogger for Fashion Cracked.

March 29th, 2010: Kaira Coronet

March 29, 2010

Gardening was always my grandma’s thing, and let me tell you—she was good at it. I remember how excited I would get around this time of year. Spring meant it was time to start working in the garden! We had our own little routine: She would do most of the big work while I was off at school, but she would always leave some simple tasks for me when I got home. It was hard work for a little girl, and boy did it wreak havoc on my allergies, but good God I loved gardening. There was nothing better to me than the feel of dirt in my hands, or the smell of the flowers as they started blooming. It was my own personal heaven.

This gardening routine between us occurred every year, up until she was diagnosed with and eventually lost her battle to leukemia when I was fourteen. My world ended. How could I function without this one woman who has been more of a mother to me than my own mother ever had? I spent many days the summer after she died, sitting in that very garden, trying to figure out what I was supposed to do. Then the unthinkable happened, my mother sold my grandma’s house. The garden was no longer mine, and there was nothing I could do about it. Right before we left for the last time, I ran out to the garden and dug up a few of her irises. They never grew for me. I was crushed. My last real link to my grandmother was dead, just like she was.

Time somehow went on, and now I find myself almost 8 years later, living in the city with no garden whatsoever. At least, no real garden. Sitting on a table in my second life house, there is a small flower pot with an iris in it. Her favorite flower.

When I see that iris sitting there, I can still recall the smell of the garden in the spring. It gets harder to remember as time passes, and that terrifies me. Life, at it’s best, is bittersweet.

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Kaira Coronet was born and raised in the good ‘ole Kentucky countryside. She is 22 years old, and really does nothing productive at all when it comes to SL, unless you count being able to spend large amounts of lindens at an alarmingly fast rate.

March 28th, 2010: Litzi Xue

March 28, 2010

It is now as March is closing and April is approaching, that my mind and heart are all over the place. I have had people ask me if I ever have a bad day or if I hide it well. It’s yes to both. However, those I’m close to can tell when something is wrong.

First, some history: I started caring for my grandparents during my senior year so that my mom could keep working. Fast forward to 2008, I began noticing something wasn’t quite right with my health, but ignored it. My first priority was my grandparents, in particular my grandpa. Congestive heart failure, Grave’s Disease, and Gout made most of his days extremely painful and exhausting. On April 8, 2008, grandpa passed away and I kept pushing forward for the sake of my grandma and my mom.

But! Ayy me, I hit a brick wall in early 2009. Doctors confirmed what they suspected. I have Lupus. Yes, I was devastated. Yes, there are days when moving hurts like hell. Today is one of them.

I draw my strength from my grandpa. He kept journals of poetry, quotes, lyrics, and personal entries that made him smile. He hardly, if ever, complained and now with my own struggle, I try to do the same. I cry when I need to, but mostly I smile. I force myself to do something creative even on the days that the pain is great.

I joined Second Life thinking I could use it as a method of distraction from my grief. I’m happy to say it worked. I have met and made some amazing friends. I have my own blog and in some ways, it is my own SL “smile journal” filled with pretty things.

There are many important dates coming up that have marked my life. It is a challenge to be positive but I still am. So, my reason to smile today? My mom’s birthday. She didn’t celebrate last year but today we party. As for SL, in a few days my friends and I will be debuting our store at the Pose Fair.

Today isn’t perfect, tomorrow won’t be, but I’ll keep finding reasons to smile.

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Litzi Xue is from Austin, Texas. She loves foreign movies, listens to way too much Japanese and Korean pop music, has a sock obsession in both lives, and sadly is just as short in her first life as she is in her second. She is a blogger and the co-owner of the soon to be opened Estetica, and likes to tell people they’re dead to her for 8 seconds.

March 27th, 2010: Kylei Benoir

March 27, 2010

I started writing something totally different, sad and full of emotion about my childhood, but that’s not what today is for me. Two years ago today was a chance to experience a second childhood, in which I could make the calls on what happens.  Two years ago today Kylei was born in SL to Ryker Beck.  It started a new journey for me just like each new day does for us all. Growing up, I didn’t have many friends and when I look at my Second Life, although some days I feel alone I know that I have great friends here and that’s what keeps me grounded.  Today was one of those lonely days for me.

I’m the mother of an 8 month old baby boy who I carried full term not knowing I was pregnant.  Eight months ago today I woke up and had a discharge, I didn’t know what was happening to me.  I had gone to the doctor 3 months before and was given fluid pills and dietary direction.  Pregnancy was the last thing on my mind.  Eight months ago today I went in labor and although I was in a room full of people I felt so alone.  All my friends and family were sitting around me, I heard my sons heartbeat through the monitors and I just felt like a zombie laying there.  I gave birth to my son the next day, he was healthy and is developing normally.

I sat today watching him sleep and started thinking.  I have a chance at giving my son everything I wish I had growing up.  The things I was so excited about when starting this adventure in my second childhood.  All the support and love he needs from his father and I.  I get to give him a whole family and that’s something I’ve always wanted yet something I’ve never truly received, not even in my second chance at childhood.  Maybe it wasn’t meant for me to have an earthly father, but I know that I can trust God and go on this journey living each new day to the fullest, appreciating all that I do have.

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Kylei Benoir is the born child of Ryker Beck and the mother of a surprise miracle.  She appreciates the little things in life like rainbows and butterflies, gets over emotional and is easily amused.  She spends her days playing with her son and peeking into SL or plurking when possible.  When she grows up she would love to be a cosmetologist and a photographer.

March 26th, 2010: Summer Wardhani

March 26, 2010

Some days I hardly have the time to login into the metaverse. Those are the days I just pick up notecards and notices to prevent my messages from capping. But today oh yessss, it’s Friday! Time to have that special shopping spree and grab the Fifty Linden Fridays items. Gosh, it’s like all my favourite designers decided to join in and spoil their customers with the best articles ever!

Ahem… *puts on a serious face*. Oh no, this is not about shopping, I simply diverted for a moment! Guess you can blame our wonderful creators for that, shame on them for never stopping designing the most awesome of things!

*TPs back to her place and looks around* I’m so grateful that I have such amazing neighbours! Two days ago, this sim had a pinkish soil with square trees, huge sleepy blue snails and half-read giant books spread all over the place. Today, I found it a good idea to drop some red rust on top of the not so tall mountains… just because I felt it matched nicely the new green ground covered with little yellow flowers. Can’t avoid a small dilemma, though, for I woke up thinking it would be fun to try a different scenario with square little dolls running after some giraffes. And what shall I make with those cutest little green sheep with pots of flowers on their heads?  Oh well, I can’t help it, I keep changing my mind every two days about the landscape I would like to build and photograph, so it’s highly probable that something will come up that’s totally unrelated to the above.

You see, the truth is that some other days I wake up with the urge of giving life to dreams and nightmares that visited me while I slept. Those are the days where, being on my own at home, I forget about time and dedicate myself completely to drawing on my laptop the images that somehow erupted from my mind and soul.

You see… it is now three years and half since I first rezzed in Second Life… and still the metaverse is the only place I am able to play god.

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Summer Wardhani has her heart and feet firmly settled in Lisbon, Portugal, where she works full-time in the area of international affairs for a non-profit health organisation. In Second Life, she takes the chance of experimenting every path her imagination leads her to. She blogs, plurks, and flickrs whenever she feels like, on a most irregular basis, only condition being… it has to be fun and fulfilling.

March 25th, 2010: Dot Chaffe

March 25, 2010

Editor’s Note: Due to the slightly graphic nature of the following post, I felt it necessary to preface it with a content warning. While this is a free-form project and not about censorship, please note that some of the words below may offend or shock readers.

Image by Flickr user Joseph Price, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 license

This day three years ago, at the age of 16, I was living with my grandmother.  Most people love their grandmothers. However, most people’s grandmothers aren’t crazy.  My grandmother, whose name was Galechka, was a very disturbed woman.

She knew I played and had friends in Second Life.  She didn’t like the competition for attention that she had with my SL friends so she banned me from playing.  This is when I realized I hated this woman.  She would watch me every second I was on the computer to make sure I wasn’t playing SL.

I was always looking for ways to piss her off and get back at her for not letting me have a life. One day, three years ago today, I got my revenge and child, it was sweet.
The woman decided that we were going to go to Wendy’s.  We got there and I ordered one of the salads while my grandmother ordered some cheeseburger that looked like it had a goat fetus on it.

I ate my salad, she ate her fetus burger.

Five minutes later: “Patrick, I don’t feel very well so I’m going to use the restroom.”

I didn’t think much of it at first but then 10 minutes, 20, 30, and finally 40 minutes passed and I decided I would be nice and go check on her to see if she had hopefully died, I mean, if she was still alive.  What I witnessed in that restroom would make anybody queasy.  This crazy woman shat ALL OVER THE RESTROOM.  There was fecal matter on the walls, ceiling, mirrors, everywhere BUT the toilet.  A bit of my soul died when I saw it. I simply walked out of the restroom, stunned.

How could a little Russian lady spray so much feces in a tiny room?

After I saw her trying to leave, I kindly told the manager that this old lady had shat all over the restroom. She didn’t appreciate it very much. She had to clean it up, and my revenge was complete. Two months later the woman passed away……

I only went to her funeral to make sure she was dead.

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Dot Chaffe co-owns a shop in SL called skin&bones. He loves to hang out and mess around in SL. In real life, he is a 19 year-old gay man who lives with his crazy Russian aunt and his teen mom sister.  He plans to major in music composition one day.

March 24th, 2010: Uriah Eulenberg

March 24, 2010

I don’t like this season. Not only because I have hay fever, but because there’s a feeling of lonesomeness. Here in Japan, every school has a graduation ceremony in mid-March, and also most companies have personnel changes in the last 10 days of this month. So these couple of weeks are called “season of parting”.
Friends say that I’m very cautious, too serious and old-fashioned about personal relations. I watch over people, listen them carefully, always take enough time to make friends with them. Meanwhile once become friends, I get kind of loyalty and try to be there for them no matter what happens. At every parting, I miss them too much.

However in the world of online, human relations are formed and grown much faster than offline’s. To be discreet is to be unnoticed. I sometimes get the impression that they might be able to find a new love in 3 days and hate her/him in another 3 days (then on the 7th day, they may possibly tweet it). It’s really hard for me to adjust myself to the world. If SL were an ordinary tool for communicating, I wouldn’t be on the grid now.
SL allows me to stay there online like me as a very cautious, too serious and old-fashioned guy. I may get another lonesome feeling when they leave me and the grid, but I’d rather take good care of people.

By the way, one of my best friends rang me today to ask when I’d be available to go to see Sakura with a bunch of fellows. We have special feelings for the flower, cherry blossoms, since we can see them bloom only in this season of parting. Besides, all of us have seen them at least once with tearful eyes. To offset the tears, sorrows, hopes and fears for changes in environment, we drink and make merry under the trees. As I’m not only old-fashioned but also decent in conduct, have never got drunk in real life, though. Might be slovenly in SL, because it doesn’t really mean to be drunk in public. I’m actually at home and usually relaxed to stay online.

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Uriah Eulenberg was born and lives in Tokyo, Japan. He works as a freelance graphic/product designer, and as a contributor in music industry. In Second Life, he runs his own men’s clothing shop called BALACLAVA!!

March 23rd, 2010: Stein Shilova

March 23, 2010

My story about March 23rd doesn’t begin in SL or near a computer at all. It starts in the operating room of an Oregon hospital at 7:30am on an otherwise unimpressive March morning. I’d been cut open hip to hip during an emergency cesarean section and in the throes of what my cardiologist deemed a “cardiac episode” and all I could do was bargain with G-d for my crinkly 8lb girl with an Apgar score of one who was wrenched out of me and fighting as hard to hang on as I was.

I spent her first birthday in another flourescent-lit room in a different hospital, holding my grandma’s hand and watching her waste away from metastatic pancreatic cancer. I waited until her morphine kicked in before I slunk out to the waiting area to whisper happy birthday over the phone, my heart aching for where I was and where I wish I were instead.

Another year passed and I was sick as a dog laid up in bed. I wasn’t even able to get up long enough to go buy a cake for her. I took enough cold meds to get up and tuck her into bed and promise her that next year would be better.

Today. Today marks three years of me as a parent. I will spend my day indulging my daughter’s every whim and spoiling her absolutely rotten. While it’s all for her, it’s really for me. It’s for the me laying on that operating table with all my insides on the outside and praying that my child will start to breathe on her own. It’s for the me that was in that hospital room, holding my grandma’s jaundiced hand instead of my child’s. It’s for the me that was too sick to even hug her, let alone wrap up her presents in foofy paper the way I like.

Maybe that’s the way this goes. I do something for her and it’s really for me, so perhaps all the things I do for me are really for her. Maybe to be a parent you have to be as selfish as you are selfless. I guess we’ll just have to tune in and see what happens next year.

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Stein Shilova is a chef and lives in New York with her family. She enjoys building and goofing off in SL when she’s not running after her child or cooking.

March 22nd, 2010: OMGWTF Barbecue

March 22, 2010


For awhile today I thought about what excuses I could give Trace for missing my deadline that would be at once implausible, yet completely believable (Kidnapped by narwhals? I’d believe me!).

For awhile today I thought I’d lost a small item that turned out to be in my pocket.  I have done this 4 times and each time I think there’s no way I’m stupid enough to have overlooked my pocket again and then – oh my heck, there it is.

For awhile today I procrastinated, but in the most efficient way –  I put off work by doing other work.

Realized how little sense that makes. Realized that regardless of how much I dislike Cadbury crème eggs, I cannot let an Easter pass without buying and consuming one. Realized I have an opportunity here to say something poignant.  Or funny.  Or sad.

Decided against getting on a soapbox of any particular flavor. Decided from here on out, all talking and writing I do should be in the style of Mr. Jerome David Salinger. Decided to stop being such a goddamn phony and go to the beach in search of bananafish.

Drew a blank.  Drew a bath, soaked.  Drew my legs up beneath me in front of my computer, and put words on a page.

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OMGWTF Barbecue wants really badly to tell you all about herself, but being a “creative type” sometimes lends itself to poor life choices, which have resulted in her not being able to read or write.  Currently she takes her coffee with sugar and cream and sasses way too frequently.  9 to 5 had previously found our heroine designing accessories and apparel for the action sports industry, until everyone in the world ever lost their job.  She likes iced tea, Redd Columbia, and begrudgingly resides in Southern California.

http://thisisafawn.wordpress.com/


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