Posts Tagged ‘Roawenwood’

WHAT I’M WEARING: I’m not really the sort of girl who wears silks, so I decided today to wear silks.  It made sense in my mind.  Anyhow, here is the style card of relevant details…

  • Shape: Skirt35SlaveGirl from Alady Island.
  • Skin: Lou Chocolate Skin- Equatore from Tuty’s.
  • Hair: Mina, in ebony, from Tameless Hair.
  • Outfit: Golden Silks from Roawenwood.  Oriental Heels from LC’s World of Fashion.
  • Accessories: Bracelets from G&S Team, Bad Girl Tattoo from -UtopiaH-, source unknown lip ring, belly button ring.

WHERE I’M AT: Once again, (or yet or still,) I’m clearing out duplicate and out-of-date landmarks, which is an excuse to visit the landmarks that have been accumulating in my inventory.  So I’m not in any one spot, I’m doing the grand tour of places I’ve visited before and places I’ve bought goodies from.  That’s a lot of places…  Looking around Java Fashions, I see classy stuff of the sort I should buy more often…I wonder to myself where I got this land mark and why I don’t come by here more often.  At the next stop, Toxic High, I see lots of stuff that is inexpensive or a gift… I also see Toxic High in many hunts, so I’ve got lots of Toxic High gear, much of which makes me look easy and cheap.  I’m apparently feeling introspective today, because normally I cheerfully go with easy and cheap.  (And so I pick to wear silks on a day I have qualms about looking easy and cheap… If anyone figures out the random chaos that is my thought process, please let me know…)

Toxic High: Skins, Skimpy Clothing, and other essentials...

Toxic High: Skins, Skimpy Clothing, and other essentials…

WHAT’S ON MY MIND: Apparently the programmer of First Life (or as I affectionately like to call him, God) has quite a sense of irony.  Thanks to the contrast between Java and Toxic High, I was already thinking about the, …, let’s call it the propriety level of certain looks.  Then I logged into First Life to play at being a server for a while.  It was a busy night at the restaurant, and one of my tables was a party of five young women (my initial guess was eighteen or nineteen years old, but as I talked with them I kept revising that younger) who were very provocatively dressed.  Their dresses were lycra and spandex, tightly form-fitting, and very short.  I overheard Jack, one of bartenders, try to draw a laugh from one of the bar regulars by claiming that if the hemlines were any higher, they would be above the girls’ waists.  I’m actually not sure where to find such an dress within the in-game context of First Life, but I own similar outfits from Toxic High and Moda Mia and Egoxentrikax and…  The girls were also wearing stiletto heels- the shortest heels in the party were probably four inches, and the tallest of the girls looked like her heels were adding another six inches.  Their hair was teased and poufed and blatantly colored.   Normally when I see outfits like that, my thoughts go down one of two well worn tracks.  Track one is to judge how well the girls pull the look off, whether I find them to successfully be attractive or whether they are unpleasing to my eye.  Track two is to imagine how well I would pull the look off, whether I want to find a similar outfit for my inventory.  I was very thrown off this evening to realize that tonight I was going down a different thought track, reflecting that whenever old cop shows or movies from the eighties and nineties wanted to portray hookers, they would show a poorly lit street with multiple pawn shops and porn shops where models wearing similar outfits would teeter up to car windows to ask drivers if they were looking for a good time.  I’m actually quite OK with looking like a slut or a hooker.  I certainly can’t claim otherwise when I post pictures of my current look with every blog entry.  But I also feel like women should project and use such a look intentionally, and waiting on young women who seemed genuinely oblivious that they might be projecting a message made me want to grab them by the shoulders, shake them, and ask, “what are you thinking?”.  It was very odd, and made me feel old, like I was somehow channeling some sort of universal parenthood spirit and that I would be telling the story of walking five miles to school, through the snow, uphill both ways, et cetera, ad nauseum, before I knew it.  It was very disorienting.

Tameless Hair.  Truly a go-to hair establishment...

Tameless Hair. Truly a go-to hair establishment…

WHAT’S ON MY RADIO: I’ll go ahead and run with the ‘feeling old before my time’ feeling, and pick a few appropriate tunes.  (As an aside, I also run with scissors.  Dammit, I refuse to be mature.  In-game or out.)  But some songs about aging… My Back Pages(I didn’t know this was a Bob Dylan song, as the only version I’ve ever heard was this cover by the Byrds.  Although through the wonder that is the internet, I’ve learned that there also exists a Ramones cover.)  Old And Wise by the Alan Parsons Project.  The Older I Get by Skillet. Live Young, Die Fast by Alkaline Trio.

SHEY: A boutique of classy elegant gowns.

SHEY: A boutique of classy elegant gowns.

There is nothing wrong with your computer.  Do not attempt to adjust the picture.  We have taken over this blog.  If we wish to make it louder, WE WILL TYPE IN ALL CAPS.  If we wish to make it softer, we will change the font to a whisper.  We will control the pictures.  We will control the content.  You are about to experience the awe and randomness that extends from my inner mind to- the outer limits of sanity.

Emily generally calls me “Firsty”, but you can call me Matt.  I’m the guy on the other side of the keyboard from Emily, and she is graciously allowing me a turn at the blog today.  (‘Graciously allowing’?  That makes it sound like you gave me a choice….)  I’m thirty-eight, happily married, and less happily employed.  I serve and sometimes bartend at two different restaurants.  I’ve been doing it for over fifteen years, a mixed blessing.  On one hand, I’m a damned good server and a decent bartender; experience and intelligence are a tough combination to beat.  On the other hand, Steve Dublanica, blogger and author of Waiter Rant: Thanks for the Tip, was right when he said most servers are in transition, waiting tables as a temporary stop on their way to some other life goal.  Fifteen years of failure to move on is draining on the most resilient soul, and I don’t think my soul is particularly resilient.  Moreover, my wife (also a server) and I want to start a family, something difficult to do amidst the instability of inconsistent incomes and unpredictable schedules.  Ironically, everything I’ve read about it suggests that my dream job is even less stable than serving.  I want to be a writer, which means I’m jealous of Emily because she already is.  I’m well aware that statement alone could put a therapist’s firstborn through college…

Of course you're jealous, firsty!  I'm just that cute...

Of course you’re jealous, firsty! I’m just that cute…

I’m terribly confused sometimes by the question of how to explain Emily, particularly to people (like my wife) who aren’t engaged in Second Life.  After all, in one narrowly literal way of looking at things, I’m a married man of almost forty who spends hours every week pretending to explore an imaginary world as a twenty-something single girl in skimpy clothing.  Although I won’t deny occasional creeper moments, (You better not!  I have pictures somewhere…), Emily is more than that.  My best explanation is an analogy.  Many actors have immersed themselves in a role, only to argue with a director that a script isn’t right, their character wouldn’t behave that way.  Many authors have shared the feeling of a character in a book taking on a ‘life of their own’ and not just doing what the writer wanted them to do.  For me, Emily is that fictional character who has taken on a life of her own, and I love logging in to see what she is going to do next, not to mention where she will end up and how she will look while she’s doing it.

My two sources for blogging ideas when I need an inspiration are’s Daily Prompt and Strawberry Singh, who is, as far as I’m concerned, the definitive Second Life blogger.  I don’t have the hero-worship-crush Emily does for Strawberry, but I am very impressed by her and I’m pretty sure I would be as tongue-tied meeting the RL Strawberry as Emily would be meeting Strawberry in SL.  This experiment- writing a blog entry as myself rather than through Emily’s voice- actually arose when ideas from both places coalesced into one inspiration.  For the ‘I’ve seen the future’ blog entry I wrote recently, I imagined I would occasionally guest blog for myself.  Some of my visitors come here from ‘real life’ links, and at least one of my goals for the blog: to keep writing and develop my writer’s voice, is more about real life than Second Life.  My blogs often touch tangentially on the whole “how much of Emily is me and how much is from somewhere else” question, so it seemed like something that could logically grow out of what I had blogged so far.  From there it was a small step to actually try it and see what happens.  The second idea I suggested in the comments area for one of Strawberry’s posts last week, ‘Falling in Love’.  Her sheepishness about trying to explain to an RL boyfriend that she had an SL alter ego, reminded me of my own sheepishness.  Which is amplified because Emily is a girl, and because Emily has a bigger digital footprint than I do.  My imaginary alter ego is not only more successful at my dream, being a writer, than I am so far- she has more ‘fame’ and presence on the web than I do.  Apparently my hypothetical therapist’s firstborn is going on to grad school…  Anyway, I suggested there was potentially a Monday Meme in the whole question of digital footprints, and I wanted to put it into a more usable form for Strawberry.

If I walk in this virtual stream, will it hide my digital footprints?

If I walk in this virtual stream, will it hide my digital footprints?

So here it is, an idea for future use:

Digital Footprint Meme Instructions:  First, measure your digital footprint.  Google yourself (or Bing yourself or Yahoo yourself if you really must…) under both your real life name and your second life name and look over what comes up.  Then post a picture inspired by the phrase ‘digital footprint’ and/or answer the following questions.  (P.S. Don’t show us your searches unless you want us all to see your real life name as well.)

  • How did the two digital footprints compare, and did that surprise you? In movies, I’ve seen characters google themselves to find out what the world knows about them, and I always assumed it was Hollywood taking liberties.  Kind of like CSI is within the realm of scientifically plausible, but ignores that real crime labs don’t have the time or budget to do what is routine upon the show, or gets fingerprint hits immediately and DNA results just as soon as two characters finish discussing another clue.  Google your own name and you get millions of results, including lots of people who share your first or last name, but the google results you are actually looking for are buried somewhere in the middle.  So I was shocked when I googled Emily Marik and immediately saw pictures I’ve published on the blog for image search, links to my blog, to an article my friend and fellow blogger Zee wrote about an outing we did together, a link to my proto-blog on tumblr, even links to the facebook account I set up in Emily’s name.  (Yes, she’s on Facebook, sort of, and I’m not.  Another therapist issue, I’m sure.)
  • Does anyone interesting share your name? Admittedly, part of the reason for Emily and I’s respective results is name sharing.  In addition to the uncounted ‘just normal schmucks’ who share my name, there is also a backup musician and a screenwriter who happen to share my name.  Neither is famous enough to be a household name, but both are in that semi-famous/almost famous range, both have professional reasons to want to push their name out more, and so I’m not the most relevant me in Google’s eyes.  There are no famous or even borderline famous Emily Mariks with whom Emily must compete.  If Emily happened to be named Angelina Jolie or even Tess Gerritsen, finding her footprint would have been a lot trickier.
  • Are you happy with the size of your digital footprint, or do you wish either one was larger/smaller?  Despite a slightly neurotic response to the realization that my fictional/imaginary alter ego has a bigger footprint than real me, once I had a chance to think about it, I’m o.k. with how things stand.  I like my privacy.  Things may be different once I start getting things published and have a valid reason to encourage people to know who I am, but at the moment, I’m content that creditors and nuisance suit lawyers have to work to find me.  (Although most of the creditors are finally under control and I’m not in any nuisance lawsuits that I know of…)  Emily is a blogger: she wants readers, so I’m glad she’s findable and hope she becomes even bigger.  At this point, I think I may even consider publishing under her name rather than mine, just because she is easier to find and therefore to promote.
  • If you woke up/ logged in one morning to discover over night you had suddenly gained rock-star status, and everybody knew who you were and wanted to know what you were doing… what would you do?  Panic?  I would definitely use my new found fame as a ‘bully pulpit’ to send a few endorsements, both positive and negative, to some people and causes that need endorsing.  That part would be fun.  Particularly the negative endorsements.  I’m fairly non-confrontational and don’t believe in burning bridges- but I also believe anything worth doing is worth overdoing.  Once it’s time to burn a bridge, I’m bringing plenty of gasoline and dynamite.  On the other hand, since I am a fairly private person, and I’m not a fan of change, I would also be pretty nervous about living under the spotlight.
Speak for yourself, Firsty!  I DESERVE to be a rock star!

Speak for yourself, Firsty! I DESERVE to be a rock star!

Two quick post scripts: First, Emily would be upset with me if I didn’t take time to point out that today she’s wearing the Simplicity Golden Silks from Roawenwood.  She’s recently used the belly button jewel that came with the outfit, so today I had her wear the whole outfit.  (Firsty, there really isn’t enough cloth here to justify calling it a whole outfit.  Particularly when you made me take the first photo in a snow field…)  The shape underneath is PetiteDollyDDD from Alady Island, what passed for a curvy shape back in the days before Lolas and Phat Azzes.  The skin is one of many *Jstyle freebies, the Kesia, and the hair is the Calla ImSoElegant.  The hose, heels, collar, earrings, and tattoos were all just odds and ends we’ve collected over time.

Second post script: I should have finished this post yesterday, but my wife and I lucked into a rare evening off together and went to see Gravity, which is particularly worthy of note since Gravity was the movie that Strawberry saw that helped trigger this blog entry.  For the record, like Strawberry and her new beau, my wife and I agreed the picture was breathtakingly beautiful but otherwise disagreed.  She loved it.  I didn’t care for it.  I didn’t hate it or think it was badly made, I just never really cared.  I wouldn’t use the phrase “boring and predictable” that Strawberry ascribed to her date, but I can see where it would come from.  Most movies are semi-predictable because there are certain rules and structures to good story.  You generally know the protagonist is going to ‘win’, but you care because you are invested in the protagonist, you want to see how they win, and you wonder about what cost they may pay for winning.  I wasn’t invested in the characters in Gravity.  Enough bits and pieces of back story were revealed to make an interesting vignette or scene, but not enough for a full story.  End result, for me the story was flat and not really that interesting.  Since Strawberry said her new beau is into long intellectual discussions I’ll guess that like me, he is someone who leads with his mind not his heart, (T rather than F if you are into Myers-Briggs classifications), and theorize that reaction to Gravity ultimately depends on how much empathy you have for Sandra Bullock’s character.

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Now all I need is a good book...

Now all I need is a good book…

Eek..My firsty has been crazy-busy the last few days in First Life, so we were both more than happy to hand the reins over to me for an afternoon.  I caffeinated myself, threw an outfit together, primped a little bit… and then looked blankly at myself in the mirror asking, “Well, now what?”  (I cannot tell a lie, my actual question contained an F-bomb or two, but ‘now what’ gets the gist.)  Normally I hit the ground running when I post, as I log in with a goal or two in mind.  Today, I’ve got nothing as I didn’t so much run TO Second Life today as run AWAY from First Life.  Fortunately, when I’m feeling at loose ends, I have a few places I can seek guidance and direction…  such as Strawberry Singh’s latest meme!

Bridge over calm and peaceful waters...

Bridge over calm and peaceful waters…

I suppose I’ll start with the questions.  (“Questions, always questions!  You are so nosy, Strawberry!”)

Is autumn your favorite season? Why or why not?  I love autumn, although my reasons are a little goofy.  Growing up, I always looked forward to autumn because of what was going on: Halloween, the local Soccer league, returning to school, friday night football games, etc.  Even though most of those don’t really apply anymore, autumn is still my favorite on residual good feeling.  Plus, we get our daylight savings hour back in the fall, something I regret giving up every spring…

Do you call it Autumn or Fall?  I lean towards autumn because that just sounds right.  I do bounce between the two, however, because here in the midwest most people call it fall.  Plus fall lends itself to better puns…

This secluded pond and waterfall didn't seem very fall-like, but did seem beautiful....

This secluded pond and waterfall didn’t seem very fall-like, but did seem beautiful….

What kind of weather does your area get during this season? What weather don’t we get during this season?  I live in southwest Ohio, an area where several weather patterns meet and merge.  (Which means the meteorologists here have a built-in excuse for when they are wrong…)  Hot, cold, rain, snow, fog, wind, cloudy, clear… in a typical fall, we get them all.  (See, there I used the word fall for the rhyme.  “In a typical autumn, all those we got ’em” would have rhymed too, but not sounded nearly as good…)  The joke in this region is that if you don’t like the weather, wait fifteen minutes and it will change.  That’s an exaggeration, of course, but when you mix the region’s natural variability with the transitory nature of autumn you really do get weather that is all over the place.  I love variety, however, so I think you chalk that up as another reason why I love autumn.

Which color do you always associate with autumn?  Orange.  Not the bright orange of a pumpkin or a tangerine, but the orange of the leaves, slightly mottled with yellow and red.

Which Autumn themed sim is your favorite at the moment?  I’m not sure if I actually have one- just as my favorite book is one I’m currently reading and my favorite song is one I’m currently listening to, my favorite sim tends to be the one I’m at.  I found the sim for today’s pictures by doing an SL  search for autumn, and this site, Natural Wilderness, was at the top of the list for most visited.  I can understand why, it’s beautiful and has a lot of couple friendly pose props, so it would be a nice place for an SL date.

Yep, that's the color I was looking for!

Yep, that’s the color I was looking for!

And I’ll finish with one of my favorite subjects: me!  Today, I’m wearing the ‘turquoise kitty’ outfit from Virtual Attire.  It’s most of what I’m wearing, including the ears and tail, the boots, the gloves and arm warmers, the stockings and garters.  I picked the Calla ImSoPlayful hair in dark brown because it matched the tail nicely.  I also added my nose piercing and a belly button ring that came from a set of silks from Roawenwood.  My shape today is the Meyko from Egoxentrikax and the skin is an ‘Arabian Princess’ skin that was included in Fierce Arabian Princess costume I picked up during my Gift Card bonanza at Fierce Designs earlier in the week.  (Side note: I spent all my Fierce Design gift cards, and in less than a week I’ve acquired another 350 L$ in Fierce gift cards… Beware another impending shopping frenzy!)