To dream, perchance to sleep…

Posted: September 21, 2013 in Uncategorized
Tags: ,
I'll give you something to dream about....

I’ll give you something to dream about….

WHAT I’M WEARING:  Since First Life is still kicking my firsty’s butt (not in a bad way, just in a “Why can’t I fit thirty hours of activities into a twenty-four hour day, dammit!?!” sort of way), I changed my look in a pretty streamlined way.  This outfit- from the Monica shape and skin outward, including the really cute mesh top, the pink and white pasties, tight jeans, white sneakers, nails, bracelets, and earrings, is an almost-complete avatar that was a gift from *JStyle.  All I had to add was hair, so I added the Emilee, a beautiful blond hair with headband from Wasteland that I picked up in their Woodstock Hunt.  (Quick aside: I now have Emilee hair from Wasteland and Emelie hair from Sugarsmack.  When is somebody going to name their hair “Emily”?)  Voila!  Cute, quick, and easy-peasy.

Don't look at the exhibits; look at me!

Don’t look at the exhibits; look at me!

WHERE I’M AT: Dreams, an interview/photo exhibit by Pho Vinternatt.  (Here’s your taxi!) It’s a very stark exhibit.  Minimal white room, 15 photos of avatars and one page summaries of their dreams and wishes.  No names are given, firsty or avatar, and I’m not even sure if the photos connect to the dreams, but the end result is moving in a second-hand sorrow sort of way.  In the notecard at the desk in the room, Pho states “When I started this project I had no idea that peoples dreams and wishes would be so much scarier, personal and moving than their fears.”  The exhibits give you a feeling of simultaneous intimacy and anonymity with fifteen people, and it is personal and moving.  The one thing that struck me was that most of the dreams were regrets; people dreaming of a life where they had taken different forks in the path that lead them to where they are now, so that they dreamed of a different now then the now they have.

Hmm.  "Post-process Settings." I wonder what this menu does...

Hmm. “Post-process Settings.” I wonder what this menu does…

WHAT’S ON MY MIND: In fine ADD fashion, this exhibit sent my mind barreling down two very different paths.  One path was analytical/statistical… I found the exhibit moving but sad because my take away was so many people’s dreams were regrets rather than hopes.  Which clashed with my belief that dreams should be hopes and not regrets, and immediately caused me to try to resolve my innate belief and the conflicting evidence of the exhibit.  I wondered if Pho’s interview style evoked regrets, if the fifteen interviews shown in the exhibit were all the interviews he conducted or if they were selected as the most moving out of a larger pool, in which case the possibility of selection bias is raised.  (The exhibit is still moving if there is selection bias, it just means I shouldn’t apply the regrets vs. hopes take away to a wider world.)  Another possibility for selection bias- if everyone interviewed was active here in Second Life, it means they, for whatever reason, choose to spend less time in First Life.  Does that make it more likely they have regrets and dissatisfaction with their First Lives, and use Second Life as an escape and fantasy from a life they don’t care for?  Yet, mostly the people I talk and share with seem happy, not regretful.. although the sharing is mostly about life here in the metaverse rather than that real world place, so would I notice?  No answer, just questions, because it troubles me that people’s dreams may not be happy.

The second path was to wonder what I would have told an interviewer my dreams are.  To quote Pho again, “I hadn’t realized how little we speak of our dreams, big or small ones, realistic or not, and how seldom we tell them to others.  Our dreams expose us, and opens our wounds and vulnerabilities. We choose our words very carefully when we do speak of them, because they’re frail and precious to us.”  My dream is to write for a living.  I know all the reasons why it is a bad idea, most of which boil down to reasons why I should take a more practical and stable route to providing.  But I have a talent (enough? how will I know if I don’t try?) and I have a passion and when I am unhappy and dissatisfied with my life, writing is my escape and fantasy.  I’ve said before this blog is my raison d’être, that I would probably walk away from Second Life to give more time to First Life (I have once before) if not for the writing.  The time I spend in Second Life is fun, but ultimately my firsty and I can take or leave it; there are a lot of fun things in the world, I’ve got a scary-big list of books I haven’t found time to read or re-read yet, and people I wish I could find more time for. The time I spend writing about the time I spend in Second Life is the high point of my day, a drug I need even more than I need my coffee.  (And I often make time for Second Life by giving up sleep, so trust me, I need my coffee…)  And it’s scary to realize how much of who I am is tied up in writing and how vulnerable that makes me to someone who doesn’t get the need or dismisses my work, either by disliking the specific piece or worse yet by trivializing the whole effort.  My dream is frail; my dream is extremely precious, and it’s scary as hell, particularly since I can envision where I am, and where I want to be, and even the vaguest outline of the path from here to there… but that path is foggy and indistinct and there are parts I can’t see and it’s hard sometimes to remind myself to just keep taking baby steps forward…

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Comments
  1. I believe dreams to be hopes, but if we lack the inner strength and fortitude to see them through to fruition then perhaps those dreams were borrowed and not really ours a’tall. As for the writing, you have one life, why not pursue your passion? Pass or fail at writing, at the end of your life do you think you will look back and regret you didn’t take that desk job?

  2. […] articulate not a positive, forward-looking dream, but rather a sense of loss, regret, or pain. A review of the exhibit that appeared in September of 2013 pretty much expresses my own response to this fact, noting that it features “people dreaming […]

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