Monday, June 30, 2014


    This pretty much sums up how I've been feeling recently. Well, more so how I felt some days ago, and a little bit now, but now it's more so I'm wanting to just curl up and sleep. I'm tired, but I can never sleep when I should, which is just awful, and then I want to sleep for a variety of reasons; one being I'm currently waiting for the proverbial shoe to drop since Friday. Will see how that goes whenever my phone decides to buzz, could just be my eternal pessimism, but I'm not sure. 
    The wanting to just up and go is something completely different. It's not born from a want to leave those I care about, but just a want to...go. Wanderlust, perhaps. I may be going to another state in August, and that makes me all sorts of nervous, but what doesn't make me nervous is the thought, hope,that  I'll end up in Europe (Germany if life decides to be nice to me) some day. I do things by feeling, rarely do I apply logical thought to anything until after the fact, and going over there is one of those things that just calls me. As it is, if I won the lottery or some way else was able to just up and go to anywhere in Europe, I'd take it. I would go and figure it out from there no matter which point of my life I'm at. I don't like risks, I loathe them with a fiery passion, but when I've a good feeling about something...I do it. I go for it and I hope that I'm right. It may seem rather nonsensical, but that's simply how I operate. 
    As I said, this is still a feeling inside of me, a bit overtaken by my current state, but it's still there. It was worse a bit ago where I was dreaming up various fantasies involving my great-great (think it's two greats) aunt from Germany, some second or third cousins that I know exist but have yet to meet because they live across the Atlantic, and other things. I don't care when in my life I'll do it, but as soon as I've the opportunity, I know I'll go for it. I'll go off to wherever and see what I can do with that. Set down new roots and such. Before I actually obtain my degree, after, when I'm a hundred years old, I honestly don't care so long as I do manage this. There are few things I desperately want in life, and this is certainly one of them. Why? I'll find out when I get there.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Growing Up

    And once more I'm unable to sleep. I'm tired, as I've been more often than not lately, but soon as I try to sleep, I fail miserably..except during the day time when a thirty minute nap quickly turns into two hours. Super fun. Probably won't be asleep until the sun starts to rise again, but one can hope, right?
    Anyhow, on to what this is actually about: growing up. Okay, not growing up in the tradition sense, but in a...changes of avatar way. I don't mean switching between hair colors every other day or shapes or skins or whatever, but I mean, if you have a normal every day look and you start to change it slowly over time. I know Armalla, my roleplay character for a few years now, has had a few 'growing' changes in her appearance; style of clothing in a very small way, eyes, and her skin. Not to mention her shape which I've tweaked the tiniest of bits, basically to make it so her legs aren't so thin.
    But my 'usual' OOC look has changed some, too. I've changed the shape a bit, slowly, over time, my average hair color is the same, skin has changed a bit thanks to group gifts and the like, and recently I've been suing brown eyes (or sorta kinda silver android eyes) more than hazel. Now, the last thing I have a good reason for; the hazel eyes I have are meh and I'm picky with hazel coloring. Some are too bright, other too dark, and other things that make me not go for it. But, on the other hand, I love these silver-ish eyes I have from ~*By Snow*~, which were a freebie I picked up when I had some idea for a picture I never took, and, while they are meant for more robot thingies, I like them. They're pretty. (These ones.) So I use them sometimes. I also have a nice set of brown eyes, add that to my mild weakness for brown eyes and...well...I've started using those a bit, too. Don't get me wrong, I love using hazel, but I'm picky. Very picky when it comes to that shade. And I've looked through marketplace without managing to find a freebie or so that is good enough for me.
    I'll admit to using blonde hair OOC wise, too. Usually that's either because it seems to fit better, or if the only color of the hair that seems to fit I have is blonde. Switching between brunette and blonde actually doesn't seem that strange to me, but that may have something to do with Armalla being a blonde and how used I am to that by now.

Yep. Blonde haired and brown eyed, it happened.
    But what I'm trying to get at with all this is that, over time, avatars grow a little in their own way. Assuming you don't change things all the time and, as mentioned, have a 'usual', or two, look(s). You find better skins, decide you like certain eyes better, or a new hair color, etc. Avatars have this capability to grow up so that the picture you have from maybe a few months back will and won't look like a current picture, much like how your ten year old self probably did and didn't look like your sixteen year old self. If you count by years with SL, then you will definitely not look the same if you like to keep updated with new things; basically that just means perhaps you'll look similar, but as newer model fitted with mesh instead of system layers and flexi hair. Though flexi and system layers are still used and can be gorgeous for certain things, two of my favorite shorter styles have are mainly flexi with one of them 'only' have a mesh attachment I've never used, they aren't the 'new' thing. I suppose you could compare updating an avatar with the sleeker items to buying a new model of whatever car.
    I can look back on older pictures, or just go through my saved outfits, and see the differences. As it is, last night, I updated my elven huntress look a bit, but didn't find a sim fitting for pictures. The only real difference is that I used my now OOC skin, the Slink add-ons, different (same colored) eyes, and an outfit for another character of mine. I used the same twisted, flexi bun style. I still used the one pair of sculpted elf ears I have. Same sculpted necklace. So, yes, it looks more like that elf of mine has grown a little bit instead of changing completely. (Curious of what look I mean, click here.)
    And as I look through blogs and Flickr, I see other avatars 'growing up'. Mesh heads, at least the Slink Visage one, give various avatars an older, more 'proper' appearance instead of a rounder face. If you follow this link, it'll actually take you to a side by side comparison; same everything minus the head. If you look through really anyone's SL Flickr not only can you see the change in their photography skills, but also the maturing of their avatar. For example, this is one of my older photos (can't post it up since, sadly, it's on my older hardrive/a flash drive, so would take some digging), and this is newer. Differences? Quite a bit. And you can find other things like that by being bored or curious and nosing through people's Flickrs.
    So they grow up, not as we do, but in their own way. As newer things come out or we feel a need for an updated look, they grow. Actually the need for an updated look may have something to do with most people not wanting to stay stagnant and the same all the time. We change without even thinking about it, without putting any effort into it, but our avatars need a little push. They have to changed with prior thought on it, with energy expended on finding what you what, or just stumbling upon it. While humans as a whole are weird, most liking but loathing change at the same time, change is still something we need, even virtual change. Maybe you keep your avatar the same minus changing to mesh hair and clothes or whatever, but, perhaps, if you have a skybox or something, you change that around every now and again. Adding something, taking away something else. It's not the same, of course, but it's close.
    I think that adding the concept of growing up to our avatars breathes a bit more life into them. You can think of the pixels as 'just' changing when you change them, but growing up seems to be a correct term to me somehow. I'm not sure if I'm expressing myself right with this, and I know it's only in a more rhetorical sense, but I'm hoping at least someone reading this understands what I mean and might be able to phrase it better. Perhaps after I get some sleep I'll take another crack at it, but pictures speak a thousand words and I think pictures is the best way to show this. So go look at someone's Flickr, you'll see what I mean.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Fashion for Life and Layers of Anonymity

    First, a bit of random, and I blame the fact my brain seems to be not working at a hundred percent today, as well that I sort of fangirled over something I saw on a suscriber notice. (Swear I felt my mental gears just stop working for a few seconds earlier today when I'd been in the middle of a post. Hopefully sleep will end up remedying this.) But the random is that the Fashion for Life event started recently, and, if you're like me, you like to go peek at the builds of these events and fairs that crop up. The whole general theme of this event is transportation, which is represented in different ways on the different sims; so that should be interesting. Granted I've recently found I like better to look around these things not on my lonesome, so...we'll see how that goes. Likely will end up as another late night excursion, but shall see how that goes yet since I've yet to ask anyone anything. Okay, fine, one person because I don't know really anybody else I'd want to ask but still.
    Ehm, but the event does have the proceeds benefiting Relay for Life, so that's always a plus as cancer is not fun. It's actually a pretty widespread thing, when you think about it. Not good and something that will take a while to actually find cures for. Thankfully I don't know anyone who has truly had cancer affect them, the closest I've had to deal with is a brief thing with my dad and skin cancer which was caught really early so couldn't develop but so much. Taken care of, so all good there. But there's enough people who have had to see loved ones die form it's never a good thing. Especially if you end up labeled as terminal. But there's always hope things will be made better for future generations. I highly doubt it'll be in my lifetime, or even the next generations, but who knows, right?
    When people design things for an event, and when it's benefiting something like this, they seem to do really well with the sims. Like the Fantasy Faire, for example. Gorgeous sims, good cause. And that has me more wanting to go look at the sims for this event sometime. I'm also going to leave this link here because it made me tear up a little (maybe it's just because of how I am it did, or maybe not, hard to tell) and because I just found it so very...amazing in its own right. Jewelry put together from beyond almost. Click here to read, if curious.

    Now, this half will contrast quite a bit with the first half, though it follows along the liens of creativity. So that's why there's a random picture above this; might replace it later when I'm awake enough to take a new, fitting pic and for a reason to play with a prop and pose pack from the Serafilms Labyrinth event. I'm also going to warn the following is a bit long, so...bare with me. If this wasn't on the very public internet and just a conversation with a friend, it would be longer. So count yourself lucky.
    But earlier today I was talking to someone and I mentioned my lack of creativity. See, that's the thing...I don't lack in creativity when it comes to small scale things, just larger, more than one or two people things. Currently I have Armalla in the middle of plotting something that just popped into my head during a rp the other day, and hopefully this idea will come to fruition soon since I'm kind of excited for it, even if it'll end awfully for her. I know, I'm an awful person for looking forward to such a thing,'ll be different, and fun in its own way. Like her being stuck with a demon was fun in its own way, so shall this be. One of those things that has you sit there, wondering just exactly how this'll work, basically. Anyhow, that's just one little example that isn't even really a matter of my having creativity, just that I can bullshit ideas off of other people's starting points. But, still, it's a small scale thing. If it involved more than two others, I would have not come up with that probably.
    Or, worse, I would have and not have said anything.
    What I think is my real problem, is that I come up with larger scale ideas from time to time, but I don't act on them because I'm afraid of someone correcting me, publicly or privately. More worried about the publicly bit, but either way it would have my confidence be shot. I know this is how I would feel from past experience.
    If anyone reading this has ever been a lead on a rp sim, then you know you're expected to come up with at least one idea, no matter if there are multiple leads or not; the others will come up with ideas and you'll kind of in a corner if you don't. I love my corner, I love being under the radar, less drama that way, but sometimes being in a corner is a really bad thing. Really bad. I have small ideas come to mind from time to time, but I never say anything on them because I don't want to be doing something wrong and end up having to be corrected. I don't want to be corrected because I know my confidence will drop for a bit and I'll just feel plain stupid for thinking whatever the idea may be.
    I've played on the sim I'm on for a few years now, and I want to do something, but I'm too nervous to. I want to give, but there's nothing for me to with how rare my ideas really are. Now, ask me to decorate something, or take a picture, and I can do that...just...not come up with larger ideas that I feel confident enough in to speak up on it. Let alone just try slipping it in there without saying anything prior. As it is, there's a reason my character's magic stands as it is, and why she hardly uses it, and why I'm really, extremely careful when it comes to magic type posts when I'm around people who I am not comfortable with. Same reason why I don't put forth ideas when I have them if in relation to larger things.
    There are people who send notices on things that I could never dream of sending a notice on, because I'd be nervous and not want to be told to not do that or something else. And I'm just talking about the guild I'm one of the IC leads of, not the whole sim. Trying to work on it, though, so I don't feel like a dead weight.
     The real reason of my writing on this is because...I think it's something to do with how my own personal anonymity is lowered quite a bit when it comes to Cadair, the sim that's more or less like a home to me by this point. While SL is, as I've stated a few times before, a rather anonymous place, as is granted by the online world, once you've been in a place long enough, it's basically gone. This applies more to those who frequent roleplay sims, I think, since, if you stay long enough, your character (if you don't change characters every other week) and/or your avatar is more or less known by at least a few people. Granted, I'm more in the corner, like I've said, because of my own insecurities, but with others, admins aside, they are known. You know they are there. Whether you like it or not, they're there. Now, chances are if it's not liked they're there, then it's not for good reasons they're known, but still. One of my friends is known by a healthy amount of people because of all that she's done and organized and thought of; and I'm not even going to mention the fact she owns a fantasy shop which actually has some neat things. (Cue shameless advertising) I also have known Taeem since before he was an admin, and he did a lot before he was pushed up to admin, so you can bet people knew/know who he was/is.
    That is just two examples of people who aren't exactly anonymous anymore for good reasons.
    Yes, of course, you still can have your RL self hidden away behind the screen, but you still hold the potential to be known if you've been around someplace, and have actually done things, since you've been there. If you do things, you will loose a layer of that secretiveness. I never really thought of that as a possibility until today when I started thinking about how people I know are names pretty solidly associated with the sim, which leads to them being more in the spotlight and heard of. And the fact they are heard's sort of like with celebrities, though to a lesser degree; you know of them, you might know a few things done, but you don't really know them until you interact with them. But, of course, on a roleplay sim chances are you did interact with them at some point. And no one is lining up for autographs from these known people. Like I said, a few differences, but similar in its own way.
    Thinking of anonymity as something with layers actually seems to be an accurate description. Only so many will get past certain layers, and depending on where you are and what you do, a layer or two may just be gone by default. Strangers get halted quickly. Acquaintances a bit further. Friends even deeper. Family and significant others even further, though friends may be on par with these two groups depending on how you are. Nothing is ever really one sided, or as simple as you'd like to think it, not even if the mysterious thing of being anonymous.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Getting Personal

    I'm finally awake enough to do this. Either I've been trying (and failing) to sleep, or I've had a headache. But I'm managing tonight, since I was determined, especially since this is probably the last night for the whole week I can stay up late. I intend to enjoy that fact as much as I can. So, anyway, onward!
    I had been wanting to this week's Monday Meme, but only getting to it now because tired and/or headaches got in the way. But I'm doing it now, so it's something, yes? But this week Strawberry Singh asked 20 questions, and I just couldn't resist, so here's my bit on this.
    Meme instructions: Answer the following 20 personal questions about your Second Life.

  1. When and how did you discover Second Life? Simple answer would be boredom plus seeing it being advertised, so had to check it out in August of 2011. (Seems like so much of a shorter time O.o)
  2. Did you know about virtual worlds before or was this your first experience with them? Yes, yes I did. Granted none of them kept my attention for long, since things like World of Warcraft and stuff I only joined 'cause my brother convinced me to, but when he'd move on to his console video games, I would get bored quickly. Very quickly. I loved making my own character, just not the run-of-the-mill questing and such. But I'd never done anything even vaguely similar to Second Life before.
  3. Has Second Life met your expectations?  I didn't have any expectations, so I guess it has? I mean, it's kept me entertained this long (well, the people I've met moreso) so it met something.
  4. If you could teleport back tot he first ten minutes of your avatar's slife, what would you tell yourself? Don't take that brief break because you get a bit bored, nothing wrong with meeting a lovely person or two before December. 
  5. How long did it take you to master flying and driving vehicles inworld? Flying I was too terrified to try until I got a decent connection going on, and when I did do it, didn't crash at all. Sort of. As for driving a vehicle...only 'drove' a bike before, if that counts. I was decent with that at least.
  6. Do you have a mystery alt? No. I have very few alts, and at least one friend knows of all of them. And two are probably a bit obvious they're me simply because they're connected to my main roleplay character, so...
  7. Is your SL avatar a reflection of you, or someone you wished you could be? All me, definitely. My personality doesn't change from offline to on, and when I'm moving about OOC I look pretty much the same...only my avatar is prettier by default (But I'm toa  point where I'm comfotable with ym body as is.) and has a bigger wardrobe and can 'dye' her hair easily enough. Now, when roleplaying that's a bit different and I could on with that, but that is more or less expected there. 
  8. Is there an individual you met in SL that has inspired you in your RL? How? I know people have inspired my RL, and names do come to mind and I'm sure they know who they are, but I'm not so sure on the how just yet. Ask me again in a few years and I'll know by then. 
  9. Do you feel it is easier to create stronger bonds/relationships with people you meet inworld as opposed to the real world? I think they're equal...almost. Difference is you need more of an emotional/mental connection in SL, while in RL most things start out with looks or inner circles. Though in SL, inner circles can introduce you to people but I've yet to see that personally. Though, depending on how you look at it, SL can have stronger bonds, and so can RL. RL holds the physical plus, and SL has the purely mental thing going on. Depends on how you look at it, I guess. Personally, I have people in both worlds who I would loathe to lose.
  10. Did you ever imagine or believe people could fall in love with someone they never met before Second Life? I never heard of people falling in love with pen pals before, but I did think that people could fall in love with people they've never met. I'm a born romantic thinker, so these sorts of things are easy for me to believe. Especially with the thought that looks aren't what has people fall in love, but rather the mental and emotional connection, which can be brought about just by speaking to someone with closed eyes.
  11. How has your perspective of dating changed (or not) since you started playing Second Life? Hm, can't say it's really changed. I see relationships that start and hold in SL as long-distance relationships, assuming the people involved live a long while away from one another. Relationships take work, and sometimes they work out, sometimes not, and that's no different no matter what world the relationship starts in.
  12. How has your perspective of employment changed (or not) since you started playing Second Life? Well...I'm not really sure. I mean, like Strawberry, I never thought that people could actually earn a decent income with virtual things. I knew people could earn money from little creative things and setting up an online shop, but I never thought a virtual medium could bring about cash. Though I did figure that if people sold and made things in a virtual world, they could support themselves in that world, else...not really.
  13. Name three things in both your lives that overlap each other significantly. Um...writing, friends, love of random cute/silly things? Or maybe rather just my personality as a whole.
  14. If you could live your life more immersively in a virtual world, would you? (Kind of like the Matrix) Oh boy, probably I would. As much of a risk it could be, I would be too tempted to, it would be kind of neat. I can't quite word the why it would be neat at the moment, but there is a why there somewhere.
  15. How do you think behavior changes for people if they're inworld vs in the real world? Why do you think that is? Some people act differently, more 'boldly' (not exactly in a good way), more manipulative, inworld and that would be attributed to the fact that they can hide behind an avatar. And other people are allowed to be more free with how they are on the inside than they could in the real world.
  16. How has Second Life consumerism changed your perception of of spending habits, the value of money, the need to be "bleeding edge" with fashion? I've never really cared about fashion, only about what I like to wear. As for money...I'm as, eh, frugal, that's a nice word for it, in RL as I am in SL. Whenever I have lindens, it stretches out for a long while, especially since they're usually earmarked for my roleplay character. Though even if they weren't, still think they'd last a while. 
  17. Do you think virtual worlds like SL drive and redefine human interaction or do they narrow and limit it? I actually touched this topic in a final paper of mine. But, ah, anyhow, I think both. I mean, on one hand, it shrinks the world and allows communication between people who would probably never have met else. Two of the people I count myself as closest to in way of SL, are far, far away and I highly doubt I'd have met them if it wasn't for SL. On the other hand, these worlds also allow for limitation, like people never talking to people that actually live near them. Of course that's a worse case scenario, but it's completely possible.
  18. If technology progressed tomorrow to allow you to send emotions to people the way you'd send text or voice messages, would it enrich your SL experience or infringe on it? Hm...I would be freaked out at first, but might adjust, if I could choose who gets my emotions and who I receive them from. Some people I do not want to know that sort of things, and others I would like their emotions to stay at the end of a ten foot stick. It would be interesting either way, though, and very good for relationships of all sorts, I would think.
  19. Name three skills you attribute to having learned or honed in Second Life alone. Photography, reactive (rather than planning the end) writing, to write for a guy's reactions. The last one is kind of iffy since I couldn't write first person for a guy nor roleplay as one, but I think, since I am honestly trying to get something near a book/short story done, that the actions of the men in my WIP stories are more...realistic. 
  20. If your grand kids googled your Second Life avatar's name, would they be intrigued, disgusted, proud, or something else? If I ever have grand kids, then...either they'd wonder/laugh at the fact I spent time in SL or they'd expect it and think nothing of it since, well, I'd probably be as strange as I am now. 

    So that's that. And hopefully if there will ever be grand kids that end up googling this, I'm right with what they're thinking :P But there's this week's Monday thingy, done late by your's truly, but I procrastinate on everything anyway, so what's new? Have a lovely Sunday to anyone who's reading this.