Friday, January 30, 2009

The Amazing Incredible Wonderous JAZZ Hall

Was feeling a little exhausted last night. My Second Life has been feeling some weight upon it that just has been wearingme down quite a bit lately. Somehow, I have gotten myself interested in some weird soap opera thatis going on in the gay community of SL, and have been following all sorts of lines of interest. I have checked various blogs, and examined groups and avatar profiles and asked questions and been through some worry and intrigue and so on and so forth...

And for why? I've always been inquisitive, and I love trying to figure puzzles and riddles out. But it has been getting ridiculous the lengths that some people will go just to prove a stinking point.

So I gave it a break and I went looking for something new.

I went to Laurel Arts Isle, and was found the Sunset Jazz club, and was immediately relieved. kool music.. Sinatra and the Rat Pack, Ella Fitzgerald, Cole Porter, Mel Torme, were playing, and it was so freakin relaxing. Not techno, not classic rock, no music with an edge, just koolness.

A friend wanted me to help him out with a game he was building. I said, "Man, I just want to chill tonight. I'll help you, but do I have to get up?"

"Naw." he said.. "it's a chat game.." so he ccame by and we hung out on the couch and I was his guinea pig for his game. It was a pretty risque game, so I was a little worried that someone would complain about the language of the game, and I said so. I just found this place and I didn'twant to get banned from it right away. So we worked on his game, and then Lenny showed up.

I've known Lenny for a while now, and I really like him, but we've never hung out in a situation other than at a club where he was working, and I was grooving. Here we just hung out and talked about stuff. It was refreshing. My other friend, Tryingto, had some things to do, so he left. So itwas just Lenny and me chatting and listening to music until the end of the night when Lenny's mate came by and I had to log off for the night.

Here's a pic of me being a third wheel.

So I was wondering what to title this blog. And I thought about all the stupid soap opera hoohah going on it seems everywhere, and I was gonna title this The Amazing Incredible Wonderous Nothing, because that's all the soap opera is. But I didn't like the sound of that, gave away the story too soon. I thought of synonyms and only came up with void and emptiness. And so I went to a website for synonyms, and I searched for a synonym for void, thinking that would be the most specific there, and lo and behold, Jazz was listed as a synonym, with this as the specific definition: - empty rhetoric or insincere or exaggerated talk. And since I went to a Jazz club, it was a perfect double entendre.

I don't usually plot out the literary choices I make like this, but here it seems appropriate.

Monday, January 26, 2009

To thine own self be true

Been in a Slakespearean mood:

This is from Hamlet, advice given by the doddering old rambler, Polonius, to his son Laertes.

Yet here, Laertes! Aboard, aboard for shame!
The wind sits in the shoulder of your sail,
And you are stay'd for.
There ... my blessing with thee!
And these few precepts in thy memory
Look thou character. Give thy thoughts no tongue,
Nor any unproportion'd thought his act.
Be thou familiar, but by no means vulgar.
Those friends thou hast, and their adoption tried,
Grapple them to thy soul with hoops of steel;
But do not dull thy palm with entertainment
Of each new-hatch'd, unfledg’d comrade. Beware
Of entrance to a quarrel but, being in,
Bear't that th' opposed may beware of thee.
Give every man thy ear, but few thy voice;
Take each man's censure, but reserve thy judgement.
Costly thy habit as thy purse can buy,
But not express'd in fancy; rich, not gaudy;
For the apparel oft proclaims the man;
And they in France of the best rank and station
Are of a most select and generous chief in that.
Neither a borrower, nor a lender be;
For loan oft loses both itself and friend,
And borrowing dulls the edge of husbandry.
This above all: to thine own self be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man.
Farewell; my blessing season this in thee!

For about one day I set up on this blog a tracker, to see who came to look at the blog. and I checked in after a day, and I saw a couple people come. (Hello!) And I began thinking about why I did it in the first place. I was getting a little paranoid, and when that happens I tend to throw up barriers and walls, and other security devices. I have one of those beehive security systems for my skybox, in fact. This was after I was encased by a griefer. One incident and I set up a security system to keep people out. This was fine, keeping out griefers, but you know what? It also kept out potential friends. And the same thing is true about the blog tracker, I think...

If someone wants tolook at my blog, they are welcome to, and if they wish to leave a comment, they are welcome to do that as well. If they choose not to write a comment, they do not need to, and if they wish to remain anonymous, who am I to try to expose them? It's not a very hospitable thing to do. Anyone is welcome to visit and have their anonymity protected, just as anyone is welcome to visit my skybox at home as they wish.

I want to be a kind person, and if someone else wants to be a jerk, that shouldn't affect my actions. That is how I will try be true to myself.

So I took the tracker down out of repect to my visitors.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Travel The Globe!

Rammy and I went to visit The Globe Theatre the other night, and we decided to write a review of it.. I haven't seen what Rammy has written yet, so I'm sure he had a different take of the place then me.

I had just gotten some FREE Gibson Guitars from Slexchange and was checking them each out When Rammy came by. They were nicely made, but no music installed, which was why they were free, I guess. I'm not much of a musician, but on SL I could fake it. I thought they was cool looking so I looked in my inventory for other cool stuff I had. I put on the kilt that Franzi gave me a while back, and Rammy's Jackson Pollack shirt. I topped it off with a Tricorn, and had this odd mod pirate get-up. I felt like visiting Somalia.

We looked in the search engine for the Globe Theatre and were surprised that there were four of them. So I looked at him and he looked at me and we both shrugged. "Why don't we visit all four and then write a compare and contrast review of each of them?" I said. "Great idea," he said. And like some creepy 1940s road movie, off we went, to the first one.

Teleportation complete.

We showed up and the first thing I noticed was how freakin' long it took to rez. Everything was grey. Apparantly it didn't take as long for Rammy, because he felt underdressed for the Globe. He put on a more appropriate outfit, and in we went.

It would have been breathtaking, walking into the theatre that Shakespeare created his marvelous plays. If there weren't so many signs and notices and so forth. take a look:
I'm certain they take down all these signs when there's a show. but it does kinda blow the casual viewer's experience of visiting SLakespeare's globe (see what I did there? SL-askespeare, I'm so clever :P) during the off-show times. There were hundreds of these SOS signs,which stands for Save Our Sims, and though Ifeel the sentiment, I did think these were terribly misplaced. Many of them asked for donations.
I wandered around backstage, and I could hear Rammy onstage uoting Hamlet, which was neat. I've been in one Shaksepeare play, Measure for Measure, and have worked on many others in my RL theatre experience, but I have a terrrible time remembering any of the lines at any particular time.

I wanted to see what the house was like, so I attempted to enter one of the box seats. This was a Herculean task, for as I tried, suddenly I was on the edge of the sim, uncontrollably walking. This is when Rammy discovered that the theatre actually sat on the corner of four sims, which makes sense as far as keeping the lag down, spreading it amongst the four sims. But in such a laggy place regardless, I went a-walkin. Also at this discovery, we realized we didn't have to review four different Globe Theatres and I was very happy about that prospect.

Eventually we got into some seats and looked at the stage from the audience's perspective. All in all, it looks like the place works, but it was so laggy that we didn'twant to spent too much more time there exploring what else the sims had to offer. Earlier that day they held auditions, (for which show? I'm not sure...) and they must have recently put on Twelvth Night, jusging from all the posters. We both joined the group to await the notice of the next play. I hope they move all the signs..
Afterwards, we went to AM Radio's The Wheat Field, and later I took Rammy to see AM's exhibit at the University of Kentucky called Beneath The Thinking Tree, which Tiffy told me about a while back., but the link seemed to be broken, orthe exhibit was taken down, so we spent the time wandering around the air. Rammy got an IM from his friend Doug, whom he invited, but apparantly Doug was busy. I met him once, and would have liked to see him again, but if he was busy, he was busy, what can you do...?
(NOTE: The events that are portrayed in this post Actually happened yesterday, Sat Jan 24. The events portrayed in the previous post, Cat Scratch Fever, odccured Friday, Jan 23. I posted both tonight, because they were starting to pile up, I've got another one that I have to finish, but it doesn't have anything to do with events that happen at any particular time, so I can throw it in anytime. )

Friday, January 23, 2009

Cat Scratch Fever

Hmmm.. Been itching for a new thing lately. Or an old thing that's been ignored, p'haps.

When you log in, you appear the way you did the last time you logged out. There have been plenty of times I log in with my cock hanging out, proud as Mary cause I didn't put 'er away the night before. Not so much embarrassing, unless you forget to set you login location to home as well..

Tonight I appeared in neko. Couldn't remember for the life of me why. I know it was late, and I was getting a little punch-drunk. I do remember we were sitting around the campfire switching av's last night... I must have put my neko outfit on.
Now there are some dedicated nekos out there.. and you gotta have the right mindset to do it. Since I was in the mood to try something new, and I already had the av on, I decided to go neko tonight, to you know, see how it fit me.
I contacted Spanki and asked for some advice, and because I keep peanut butter in my ears, I forgot to write the advice down.. but it went something like this.. "They are independant and dependant... and---, um... er.."

aw hell, 'scuse me while I log in real quick to check...

/me logs in
Well, fook. I don't have it saved. Well it was really good advice, nice and concise.

about being independant and dependant and loving a good scratch, and umm... stuff...

So I went to a place called Mig's, where I found a nice area to curl up and sleep for a bit. I batted at some reeds, and mrowed some.. Spanki was there in IM as my neko advisor, and we talked about pets and stuff. I found a dance area that was streaming some poppy music and a couple others were there... I danced some, but then I soon got bored. So I went to another place that was in the search engine under "neko". It was a Japanese looking place, very pretty. I found a tai chi spot and spent some time there. After a little while I decided that that was enough of that and I wandered around a little more. Found a handy place to relieve myself in this Japanese garden, and when the owner of the sim came by, I thought maybe I had better skeedaddle.
Not sure if I'm neko material.. won't give up the ship yet, cause I did find this real interesting feather on a string that did keep me busy for hours, and after that I fell asleep.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Trust me.

Trust is the father of risk. I don't know if that's an actual quote. It could be, though, it's got all the right parts. It's short, punchy, colorful, relative, and personified. It also has a subject that is universal. Whether it is accurate remains to be seen

Everyone deals with issues of trust. Who does one trust, how does one gain trust, when is trust broken? Questions that are always different in every circumstances.. Is like a river, always the same, always different.

There are a few people I truly trust, I have known them and believe that they are not out to do me harm. There are a few people whom I do not trust... they have proven themselves to cause me harm in one way or another in the past and have no intentions of righting that harm. There is the vast majority of people whom I do not either trust or distrust, some of whom I have interacted with, some of whom I don't even know exist.

I like to think of myself as a risk-taker. In Tarot, I am almost always 0 The Fool, ready to jump blindly into the next situation, knowing full well that there will be perils and pleasure. For me to take a risk, I must first feel confident that the reason for taking the risk is beneficial. Why take a risk if there is no chance for gain? If there is something to gain, take the risk. If there's nothing to gain, skip it, it's not worth your while. But for the unknown benefits... that's where the trust comes in..

I trust my friend Rammy. When I met him the other day, I took a certain risk, (which I shall not reveal) and he responded in a way that in itself was similarily risky, and I think we both benefitted.

So is trust the father of risk? I think perhaps it is not the father, but maybe, ummm.. a guardian, or an overseer of risk. The cultivator?

I talked to my friend at work the other day about friendship. I think I clarified friendship well enough for me, if there is doubt. A friend will listen to your problems, may or may not judge, may or may not try to solve. Doesn't matter. more importantly, will share his (or her) problems with you. That is how I am to gauge whether a person is a friend or not. If they listen to my problems, yet do not trust me enough to tell me theirs, there is some sort of agenda going on... If they tell me their problems yet don't listen to mine, they are attention vampires. A strong friendship has balance on both sides, whether is a minor friendship or a major one.

And that's what I have to say about that right now.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Check it check it check it!

Earworm's the best! Always looking for innovative music.. let me know please!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Car Rides and an Answer to an Age Old Question

Yesterday I was going to go to tainted boys club bacause it was Saturday and most of their scheduled events are at 12 noon SL, (which is 2 CST) when I am at work during the rest of the week. When I first looked at their schedule, I was kinda confused. But then I realized it was run by and attended mostly by Europeans, and so it made sense. Anyway, the only day I can go is Satuday, so that's what I intended to do. The theme of the day was "bad taste"... I decided to skip that part and just go and have fun.

Well, I got to the mall outside the shop when Rammy IMmed me.. I was hoping to hear from him, so I started chatting with him, and I guess we chatted for a good long time, because when I checked the minimap, I saw there was only two other avs in the area... everyone else had left. I had totally missed the party. Ah, well, I woulda rather chatted with Rammy anyway. So I was standing there, and a British vehicle called a MINI pulled up, and the driver asked if I wanted a ride. This took me by surprise, as I didn't recognize the driver. "I'm not a woman." The driver said, "even if I look like one."

"You look like a little car," sez I.

"lol, hop in."

So I didn't know what to do. I didn't know this person, and my RL cautions were about to take over, but then I thought, "what's the worse thing that could happen, I'll get raped?" More risks for Leigh. I hopped in and went into mouselook, and looked at the driver. Ah, a woman.. that's why he said that.

"I'm not a woman" he repeated. "I'm wearing this because of the party we just had" (jsyk: I am paraphrasing... these are not his exact words). Ah, the bad taste party... How this was in bad taste, I don't know, cause I wasn't there. "I'll switch back" he said, and thusly swutch back as promised. He was cute.

It was a British car, but I, the passenger was on the right side, which was opposite from British cars, as I understand. Had I not been white-knuckled from the insane way this guy was driving, and hanging onto the panic bar I might have questioned it. We drove everywhere on the mall, and I mean EVERYwhere. on the sidewalks, smashing into other cars, over the fountain, and even in the tree once. Thank god for roll bars. We ended up in the dance club, where he was having trouble doing a three-point turn-around to get out. I said thanks for the ride, and didn't know what to do next. My legs were a little liquidy, and I had banged my head once on the window. I was generally okay, though. He hopped into his 1957 silver and green convertible Bel-air. Now I gotta say, this is one car that will make me cream my pants. I'm not a car buff, but I LOVE the Bel-air. I have wet dreams about them. He asked me in again, and between my drools, I got in, and we drove around the mall some more, but this time I didn't notice his reckless driving skills. I was wondering what he wanted from me. Was he picking me up? or was he just being genuinely friendly?
I checked his profile out. Adonis was his name, and he was co-owner of tainted-boys. I thought this was strange, as I hadn't met him before, and he was inviting me in his cars and such. I knew he had just gotten married to the other owner, trace17, just the previous weekend, because I had gotten a notice of it via the blue notes. He showed me another car, a beemer, and I started thinking he just liked showing off his cars. He asked me what I was doing there. I told him I intended an going to the party, but had gotten distracted. I told him how I found the sim by looking for Lenny and GG's shop a couple weeks ago. He took me over to the shop, which I had already located, but I went along anyway. We both agreed that Lenny is a very good guy. I don't think anyone anywhere would disagree with that. and then I asked him about the wedding. He absolutely glowed talking about trace and the whole ceremony and so forth, and he started rezzing boxes to show me pics. I said he should put them in a scrap-book, when he pulled one out and started flipping the pages. It looked like a beautiful wedding, every one looked very happy. The reception was in the clouds and there was a monstrous swan.
This was one of those moments when you might think, "how long am i gonna look at these photos?" and I was thinking of making a exit when he asked me: "Are you an elf?" I thought this question was non sequiter, but I explained, that no, I was a satyr, dressed as human. He was unfamiliar with the word, so I said faun. "Ah ha," he said. "What does a faun do?"

This brings up a question that I hadn't really had an answer to before.. what'sthe difference between a faun and a satyr? many people have different answers, but during this little conversation with Adonis, I think I came up with a satisfactory answer.

Without missing a beat, I answered. "I fuck around." which is pretty true.
I've been kinda a slut lately, but that's ok with me. Hope it's ok with you. I don't consider myself a faun. To me, a faun skips around, playing pipes, and makes chains of flowers. A satyr is more carnal and would rather stick his cock into anything that has a hole than weave a daisy chain (unless it's the OTHER type of Daisy chain....). Not that I don't like music and pretty flowers.. I do. I have a banjo that I pull out from time to time. But generally my modus operandi seems to be to spew cum.

Hmm... I am pretty slutty..... Is that what I want from my SL experience? Seems I have to do some figuring out of stuff 'n' stuff.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Non SL link

Hmmm... not long windy blog about whatever ridiculousness is on my mind...

I found a forum website that I have been reading, and it's right up my alley. and in the blogiverse:

(there's a really good video posted on the blog dated Thursday, January 15, 2009. It's a lecture given by Dr. John Corvino. He beautifully articulates why being gay is not morally wrong.)

(Ummm... picture picture.... ummm.. /me looks through my files... Ah ha! here's a picture!)

Hee hee hee, some of my friends at work....

Later Taters!


Wednesday, January 7, 2009

False alarm

7:00 pm (Central) I'm feeling a little odd about tonight. I haven't logged on yet, but something doesn't feel quite right... Yesterday I posted a monstrous, cathartic blog about my year 2008 on SL, and then when I logged on, I had some really fun times.. I met up with Rammy, Deliciousdemon, and Naedani, and later Ricardito, and we had centaur races. Del on Naedani and Rammy on me. Nae and Del won, but that's only because of the slippery mud near the pond! Afterwards we made a campfire and I played banjo, when Inuchian came by with his accoustic guitar and then he brought out his piano later. He plays beautifully... The Purple Beany also showed up, but he kept crashing so much I'm surprised his computer's still in one piece.

I think I will say a little prayer for the Purple Beany's computer....

(quiet time)

Later I met up with a variety of old friends and we talked...and stuff. And it was all-in-all a good night..So I wonder why I feel odd about tonight? We'll see....
(after logging off)
I guess it was nothing. I met up with Del andwetalked some.. and then headed out to Premier, the theme for the night was cowboys, and that'sone of my favorites, so we danced. DJ Mirah played an awesome country set, and I joined her group. I dumped Slade/Studios Multimedia, cause I never go there, even though they promise good music. I IMmed with Nae for a good long time, about what love is and what must bedone for love, and Del had to leave. So after the party, I went home and contacted some friends, whom I hadn't seen since before New Years. Then I met Beany and Del again...
Nothing major. Don't know why I felt odd about tonight. Pretty ordinary night. Well, I had fun, anyway. I really like Premier club, there's a good feeling about the place. LOL, course if my indication of dread means anything, it probably means that Premier is rather ordinary...
(Totally kidding, I like the place..)

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Onward to Y2KIX

So where was I?... I came across the sim in which I would spent most of my time, Chiaroscuro. I had fun with my centaur, and I'd switch back every so often as satyr, and I'd chat with the locals. But just chatting wasn't enough. On another commute home I was randomly thinking, and I had an idea to build a sousaphone. I was really psyched about this, so when I logged on that night I found a quiet spot and commenced to build one. I worked on it all night, and a few people stopped by to see what I was up to, but for the most part I was left alone. I discovered some of the more intricate rules of SL building, such as return parcels and prim counts and so forth. It was very fulfilling. On the last day of my building, a character named Emperor Bing ( I think that was his name...?) came up to me and asked if I would build some instruments for him.. I said sure, it was fun to do. I also told him that I did not know how to add animations and music to these, but he said he knew someone who could do this. So over the next couple weeks I built some more instruments.
As I was doing these projects, I saw Emperor less and less often. I did meet Arva, who would sit with me and we'd talk about all manner of things. I enjoyed his company, and it was to him that I first confessed about my RL issues of acting straight and being secretly gay. SL allowed me the anonymity to express explore my feelings without having to do so in RL. He (virtually) rubbed my shoulders and kissed me, we flirted and kissed and I came to relax about my situation. It was a very important time for me. At this time I also met Greville Oh, the owner of the sim. A very nice man who was constantly busy, yet took the time to visit.

When I was finished with the instruments, I was ready to hand them over to Emperor. Since I hadn't seen much of him, I had to contact him. I set up the instrument in a nice display, and IMmed him. When he arrived, he seemed hurried and nervous. Greville also showed up, perhaps because he was curious, I thought. My first transfer of objects went very lumpily... I had to do it several times to allow for different permissions, during which Emperor was becoming more agitated and impatient. Eventually, everything was ironed out, and Emperor took his items and left. I cleared up my stuff, and said good night to Greville, as it had gotten to be very late. I didn't think too much more of it.

I decided that I was becoming a contributing member of SL and Chiaroscuro specifically. I was also meeting many interesting people whom I liked very much. I decided that it was time for me totake a plunge. I increased my account from Basic to Premium, since I was enjoying this habit, I decided to invest some money into it, and I began renting a skybox from Greville. I attended weekend parties and generally had a good time. Archmage Kondor was one person I met and we became very close friends. He had rented the skybox above mine (It was originally rented by Emperor) and we hung out all the time. I would talk to him about my RL issues, and we'd go out exploring together and have a generally good time. Arva was taking on bigger responsibilities at Chiaroscuro, helping Greville manage the sim, so it was understandable that I would see less of him.
At one point I found out why Emperor was not around so much... I had gotten word that he had been banned from Chiaroscuro for messing around with a minor-- not good. So that explained why he hadn't been contacting me about the process of the instruments. What can you do about something like that? It was upsetting to me because his contact for animations and music went away with him, plus I witnessed how people can exploit their anonymity in dangerous ways. So I went along, humming my song and wondering what the next great adventure would be.

My friend Arch got a boyfriend named Aelred, and I saw less and less of him. They had become interested in another sim, Aquaria, and a mer lifestyle. I tried it a little bit, but the RPing was a little too strong for me. I tried involving myself with other fantasy groups, but again, the RP seemed a little contrived for me. Arva started dating Gerardway, and this made me terribly jealous, more than I cared to admit. I felt our kinship and friendship was not to be any longer. I met Ricardito around this time, but I saw very little of him because he was busy setting up his home/globe. I also met someone named Tarr Gothly, and I fooled around with him some and we became friends. He invited me to some dance clubs, of which I tended to avoid, for no other reason that I wasn't interested...
In RL, after an uncomfortable day, I had an argument with my wife about use of the computer. I was very upset, and I needed to get out to cool down. I drove around town, my thoughts spinning around in my head. When I came home, the kids were already in bed, and my wife was watching TV. I told her I had cooled off some, and I went into another room. After maybe fifteen minutes, I joined her in the living room, and I told her that the argument we had had nothing to do with computer time. After a few beers and many tears, I broke down and told her that I was gay. It was not a pleasant evening. But it was a good evening, a necessary one. She had no idea of my feelings, even though I thought that I had slipped on more than one occasion. Apparantly no one sees your fears and faults as much you do. I had stymied her for a good twelve years, and she felt she couldn't trust me any more. We went through therapy together and learned that, yes, I wasn't honest with her, and yes, her idea of what her life meant and was built upon was based on things taht weren't true. And yes, despite all this, she still loved me. And I still loved her. We have shared so much together and we "get" each other like no one else does. It was hard, but it was worth it.
The little dramas in SL had returned to their rightful perspective--minor. After all, I had some pretty big fish to fry in RL, and SL was meant to be a release from my RL problem. Aelred invited me to an opening in his gallery in Chilipepper, and I had an inkling! I do art in RL, why couldn't I have a art show in SL? I felt my pieces weren't really good enough to display in RL, but they would work here. So I had it set up that I would upload my art inworld and I had an opening in June. While I was preparing, Ricardito had completed his globe and had a globe warming party. I came and met people and ate the little pixel crackers and smoked the particle pot, and swam in the pool via poseballs, and ended the evening with him in the shower.

The next day, I contacted him and told him that was a totally weird experience to me and that I had never done that before. We talked and became fast friends. I hung out with him more and more, and eventually we became boyfriends. He was a great influence for me in SL and in RL. He helped me with my self-esteem in both worlds and made me feel needed. I had never felt this way before and it was exhilerating. I felt my friendships across the board were strengthening. Earlier I mentioned the art gallery opening, Rico came, and Tarr did too, and so did many of my friends, Rammy and Paradox, Archmage and Airia, Arva and Grev and Blackdog, and many others, and of course Aelred was hosting. Many many people came and I felt indebted to these people, my friends.
Arch and Aelred announced their engagement. Greville elaborated a big ceremony, and Arch asked if I would be his best man. Unfortunately, I did not know if I could log on at the prescribed time and date, so I said that I'd have to decline. Later I found out I was free at the time, and though I didn't want to dismount his other choice, I did want to attend. There was a mix-up, and when I was called via IM to come, I was at the reception, not the ceremony. This was upsetting to me, and when I talked to him about it, he didn't seem to understand. So I broke contact with him, which was really kinda juvenilish, but I just didn't want to deal with it anymore. So I lost a close friend. It was also about this time I built my windmill, which became my home for a very long time until quite recently.
I moved on, though. I still had people with whom I hung. Tarr, for example. He was fun, light, cute and sexy, and he liked to dance. Rico had my primary attention, and Rammy was growing to become a strong confidant, but when they weren't online, Tarr was there. He took me to my first club at Incubus. My friend Thorn also began inviting me to IGBC, where he was hosting. I began showing up to these two places and was beginning to make friends who weren't mythic. At first I was very nervous, because these clubs were not part of my life previously and I felt like a fish out of money. But for the most part I had a good time. I'm not so much into techno/disco/club music, but I'm okay with it. I loosened up and enjoyed my SL experience more.

As summer was winding down, I and my RL family had planned a trip to visit family in Minnesota. I was going to be offline for a little more than a week. I made sure to spend extra special time with Rico, and we clarified our relationship clearly. I was getting confused, and so was he about our feelings for each other, and we had a hard time distinguishing between RL and SL for a while there. I had fallen for the man behind Rico, and he had for me, and it was not simple anymore. He also informed me that his RL persona was applying for some positions and that his real life would have to change drastically. I told him one of my goals in Minn was to inform my parents and brother that I was gay and that my family life might change. We promised to keep in touch via email, but Real World things were changing for us that would affect our SL relationship. Also during this time Tarr stopped being Tarr and he reincarnated as an alt, for his own reasons (and to protect his identity, I won't mention his new name). I took this in stride, because, after all, that is his choice.

My trip to Minnesota went very well. It was difficult to explain this to my brother, whom I saw first, but he was very understanding. It was more difficult to explain to my parents. The reason for the difficulty was that they were rather unfamiliar with that "kind of" lifestyle. I was worried that they might be upset by this, as they had been lately been going to church regularly, and I was a little worried about some sort of homophobia from them. Fortunately, it turned out they were just rather bemused with a dash of concern. It was hard, but on the same token it was rather easy. During this trip I spent some very necessary time with my wife and I found that I truly was taking her for granted, and our bond became stronger. I emailed Rico to let him know I was fine and that things were going well. When I returned, it was August, and the summer was coming to a close. Rico had gotten a position in another state/town that promised to hold the majority of his attention after September. During that time hehad to plan his moving and he would be offline for a good chunk of the time. I relished as much time as I could with him, and treasured his company.

I spent some more time in dance clubs, but something wasn't feeling right. I began getting uncomfortable in these clubs, I was becoming more and more anxious. It finally got to a point where I couldn't even be in the club at all. I would place my avatar in the dance area, and then I would turn my headphones off and pull my camera way back so all I could see was the outside of the club and the local chat. I was maddening that I wanted to be in there yet I couldn't be in there, and yet I wanted to be in there but when I was my heart started beating faster and at some points I was having difficulty breathing. I couldn't understand it, and I wanted to beat this. But it was getting to a point where I just had to do other things. Burning Life was happening, and Rico invited me and Rammy to some events at Broadway Isle. I was alright in these crowds, and I had mucho fun. But it still bothered me that I couldn't visit my friend Tarr, who went to these places regularly. Everytime I tried, the same thing would happen, I would enter, say hello hello to whomever was there, and then not say another word the entire night. I mean, who can compete with a ~~~*Woot woot*~~~ and a homo party whistle? how was I to relate?

Rico's job took up most of his time. I met new people all the time, the old crowd from Chiaroscuro didn't seem to be there anymore, but new people were showing up, and I found them engaging and dimensional and creative, and I fucked some of them. I found that I was becoming more of a slut in Rico's absence. Maybe that was bothering me. On one occasion when he was online, I told him that I had been fooling around, and he said he was alright with it, since I was only giving them my genitals and not my heart. I guess that I didn't tell him that I was doing it more than I thought was proper, and that's probably why I felt guilty about it. Rammy and I were hanging out more and more, and he invited me to go to Tiger's Isle, where Franziskus was building a cave area. I had met him before, in fact Rammy brought him and Quagmire to my home once when Iwas building a Moroccan minaret, but didn't really know him too well. It was fun if laggy that night, and I visited the Tiger Island beach for the first time. Franzi was building the setting for a party and Rammy and I just kinda hung out on the beach while he worked. I had no intention of going to the event, sicnce I was still dealing with my social anxiety, but it was fine, there was no pressure.
In October, I was bound and determined to overcome this anxiety. Tarr's third incarnation had owned a club, and I tried many times to go there. It got so frustrating for me that I took him off my contact list and never visitied him at all. It was not a kind thing for me to do, because he really didn't do me any wrong. I had done this before with Archmage, and I regretted that, too. but I did it, and felt so ashamed that I never contacted him to say sorry. Still, I had to overcome my fear. I used two areas, Tiger's Isle and IGBC, the two dance areas where I felt if not 100% comfortable, then at least acceptably calm. The more I went, the better it got, as I felt like I was under control of this. Towards the end of the month, right before Halloween, a friend of mine was killed in a mauling by a tiger. (He worked in a sanctuary as an animal keeper, and it was technically a liger-- cross between a lion and a tiger, but that gets wordy to describe, like I did just now :P) It was to say the least, shocking for me. I went to the Halloween party in Arizona Isle, and was pretty quiet because of what had happened to my friend, but I didn't want to ruin anyone else's fun. Then it kinda hit me in a strange way. I was here at Tiger's Island, with a bunch of bloody corpses dancing. It was sooo strange that it was so coincidental to what happened in real life.. I felt like booking, but I also felt that I had made so much progress that I wanted to stay. And then Rickie showed up in his Halloween get-up, which was a headless corpse, holding his head in his hand at his hip... I saw this and really freaked out, because after all, my friend had his head pulled from his spine. I quickly said goodnight and logged off.

November came and Obama was elected. Rammy started talking about OpenSim, as if it were the wild and woolley west. He had gone on some adventures there, and asked me if I was going to try. Now I'm a computer idiot. I can't figure out my mp3 player. I downloaded it, and went in there a bit, but I was terribly confused about it. So now I have this extra icon on my desktop that I don't do anything with. so thatbrings me to about 55 applications eating up valuable disk space that I don't use. *shrug* oh well. Overall, though, November was a very good, stabilizing month for me both in SL and in my RL. Perhaps it was because of my friend's death, perhaps it was the news that Rico had met someonein RL and I was genuinely happy for him. Perhaps it was the RL therapy I was going through, which forced me to re-examine my life. Perhaps it was the anticipation of Thanksgiving and Christmas. Perhaps it was just my time to be stable. At any rate, I had rediscovered fun, I had my perspectives in order, and my anxiety was under control.
I wrote aboutwhat happened to me in December in a previous blog ("Leigh loves Rico"), so I won't get into all the events that happened in it. One thing I didn't mention was the introduction of a new person in my life, Naedani. Nae and I had been spending a lot of time together, and he had sorta become a major squeeze for me After Rico and I broke up, I spent a little bit more time with him, and *ahem* explored the possibilities. I was a little hesitant to go too far with him, as I was not looking for a rebound relationship after Rico.

I will now, however, get to why I was having a crappy New Year's Eve. I was genuinely lonely. My wife wasworking that night until 11:30, not getting home til 11:50, my daughter spent the night at Grandma's and my son was content to watching Ghostbuster movies until he fell asleep. In-world, Rico wasn't there virtuphysically or emotionally with me. Many of my inworld friends were not online, and I didn't have any big plans of where I wanted to be. Earlier that night, Rammy came to visit, and then Naedani IMmed me at the same time, and then my friend Tiffy also IMmed me. It was a communication juggling act, but every so often that happens. Then Rammy decided to spend the New Year countdown in the Real World, and he logged off, and naedani did as well, and Tiffy had her thing going on, so I didn't know what to do. I wandered from place to place, my favorite haunts were empty. So I went to Sky Ranch, pretended to have a good time, and then soon logged off.

I was lonely. I spend a lot of my time on SL by myself, and looking at my contact list and wondering what people are up to, but I don't contact them too often. I just figure that they're busy, and there are several people on my contact list that I feel funny about contacting just because I don't know them that well. Which is damn foolish, I know. I should make the attempt more often. I've found that the people whom I've tried to get ahold of are the ones that are my strongest friends. Tiffy for one... Every so often I call her just to say hello, and she is such a ray of sunshine and has such a magnetizing personality that I feel confident in her being a friend. And Taurin. He convinced me it was ok to say "I love you" and have it mean nothing more than that. (Actually that was kinda hard for me..I was felt that if I had said that, I would become attracted to him, which wouldn't be so bad, but again I was worried about rebounding). Loneliness is such a terible place to be, but what's worse is when you think you're lonely but just can't see the people who are there. The following days were much better... See, 2009's already better than 2008..

Ok, that's the end of this lengthy blog. I'm gonna put some pics in now.... Thanks for reading!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Why 2008 Was My Best Year (of the two)

I wished many people Happy New Year, and I received many good wishes in return. But in truth, it really wasn't a fun night for me. I tried and I tried, but I just wasn't feeling the festivities. When midnight hit the east coast, I was at Sky Ranch, but I don't think I said more than two things the entire night out loud. Amidst the Woots and Wahoos, I think I said hi to the DJ (His name was Yummy, btw.. never heard his show before) when he welcomed me in. I've been to Sky Ranch a few times, but not enough to be considered a regular. And with my tendency for tight-lippedness, it is hard for me to open up to people. Right after East coast midnight, (which was actually 11:00 for me in RL), I was tired of not having fun and I quickly logged off.

So it was bothering me why I wasn't having any fun, and I spent some time reflecting.

2008 was an explosive year for me in SL. I started out the year in Carbon Freeze mode. My birthday is August 31, 2007. I had heard about SL on NPR's Science Friday, and I decided to try it out. I had a pretty typical first few days, I would suppose, starting out with the uniform white T-shirt and jeans and clonish features. I went through Orientation Island and read all the signs. I edited my appearance, rezzed a few cubes, flew about some, and experienced my first teleport. It was fun. I wandered about quite a bit and didn't keep track of anything I did. I discovered the wonderful world of freebies, wondered about the cool stuff I found and when I was done for my first day, I found a air mattress, constructed my first swimsuit (bright green speedos! Ooo, risque!) and sat on the pose ball. I logged off.

It was a fun little experience. Over the next couple of weeks, I came online about twice a week. I made my first friend, a woman named Serena, who showed me how to dance. I thought it was a goofy dance, but she assured me there were better ones out there. I had no idea what to do with this new friend after we parted ways, as I didn't understand IMs and so forth, so I never heard from her again. I developed the skeleton of my character, a satyr, by building my first set of horns and tail (which I still have, btw) it took me a while to figure out the hooves, but I did that too. I was pretty dang proud of my little satyr, even though now I look at how primative it was. I was determined not to buy anything at all, because after all, I thought this was going to be a cheap little hobby. So I built everything I could, and used freebie clothes whenever I could. Wasn't too bad a Life. I stumbled and bumbled about, and when I discovered how to use the mini-map, I walked directly to the closest group of people. At the sim called Clinker, I found an odd bunch of people sitting around a campfire. I said "hello" and was invited to sit. I, a satyr, sat between Pinhead and Batman. Oh this was thrilling! I engaged in the chat and discovered that these people were listening to their media. They showed me how to turn on my media player and there was a radio show being broadcast. This was amazing to me.. lol.. I was in love with SL.
The people also showed me how to join a group by clicking on the big sign nearby. So I joined my first group, The Haunting Hour. I also became sorta a regular there, listening to the stories and chatting with whomever was there. When there was no radio show, I wandered about more, but I always came back to sit around the virtual fire and listen to Ray Bradbury Theatre or Stephen King stories. I developed my building skills and created more avatars that I thought fit me, such as my dragonfly fairy and I felt I had a pretty good "mundane" avatar for walking around regular human folks. I built better horns for my satyr, and eventually built the antlers that I still wear today.

It was fun.. but eventually the glimmer of fun and excitement began to wane, and my RL was needing me. So I stopped logging in altogether. That was almost Thanksgiving of that year. My first couple months I felt I had did quite a bit, Haunting Hour grew, and eventually the owner, Martian Wei, bought an entire sim called October Country. I knew how to protect myself in sandboxes, and I caught a glimpse at the world of furries. But really, there wasn't much to keep me there. So Leigh Eel went into stasis.

I had always had a sexual fascination for mythic creatures. My favorite was of course a satyr, and I had a chance to live as one in SL. But then the other mythic creature that lives in the back of my brain wanted out as well. In March of 08, I was driving home from work, and my fantasies were playing in my head, and the centaur suggested I try SL as a medium for manifestation. When I had a chance at home, I logged in, and I attempted to build a centaur body. It was very very very hard to make a convincing centaur. So I used the search engine to find some help. I found Hoof It, which had a convincing centaur for 1200 L$. I had maybe 8o L$ left over from the survey I did (I had splurged once before and bought some eyes fo 20 L$), and so I antagonized over it for a few weeks. Eventually, I thought, what the hell, I bought exactly the right amount of lindens for the avatar through the website, logged in and bought the avatar. My first major purchase! The spark of SL had returned for me.. I could play my centaur and have my little happiness. I searched out some fantasy sims and came to one called Metatheria. The people who I met were very friendly and invited me to join their group. I did, and I explored on my own. I crossed over to the south to Chiaroscuro and I fell in love with the place..It was a fantasy sim, the people I ran into (mostly fae) were very friendly and happy to meet a centaur and I was allowed to build there! I spent several days there.

This was also about the time in my RL that I had to deal with probably the biggest change in my life. I had to come out of the closet. For real. In Real Life. To my wife of nine years. I had to be honest with myself and to her or else my real life would pass by in shame and discomfort.

oh my god... This blog is getting really long, and I still haven't gotten to why my New Year's day was kinda crappy. I'm gonna have to leave this as a TBC... For the two people who read this, just so you know.. I've figured it out and am not having a crappy time at the moment.. In fact, I'm feeling pretty good. :)

Rest of story to come...(with maybe some pictures, lol)