Sitting here not knowing what to write about. What on earth would anyone care to read about this elf shaped cluster of pixels. The answer: Probably nothing.
What I think I’ll do is give some advice when it comes to navigating this virtual world.
Learn all you can.
Building with basic prims isn’t difficult! There are classes in world all the time with free supplies and teachers that happily teach you everything from basic scripting to texturing to putting together a really horrific shoe. It’s fun! It’s usually pretty silly. You will come out of it with a better understanding of our metaverse. Experiment! Break things!
As Peter Venkman said, “Human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together…mass hysteria.” And that’s just Monday afternoon. So many times when I wander the grid or read Plurk people get all bent out of shape about people doing things they shouldn’t. Let’s face it. Government in SL is spotty. It’s a part of being in a metaverse where everything is user created. Society as a whole, I believe is inherently good. But yes…there will be a few people that get their rocks off being “that guy”. Whinging on about it does nothing. Seriously. That said:
The “mute” option is your friend.
Why put up with it? You’re not being on a “higher level” by putting up with people that upset you. Ask yourself a few questions: 1. Do you love them? 2. Do you need them? 3. Are they making you money? Yes to any of these and you need to put your big person panties on and sort it out. If these are all no and you’re still trying to fire off that one last remark you’re fooling yourself about questions 1 or 2. The people that natter on about not caring about something/someone care the most. When I don’t care about something it never comes up. Period.
People are not what they seem.
Most (all) of us learn this the hard way. Friends are great! Associating with our fellow human beings in this world where we can be anyone and anything is incredibly freeing! But we’ve all heard those stories…you know, those “crying game” stories. If your virtual friend/lover/whatever were just a sexless prim cube floating around would they be as interesting as as…oh I dunno, a perfect, glamorous sparklepyre fashionisto? If the answer is “no” then good heavens keep them at arm’s length. With that:
Love people for WHO they are.
That way when that pissed off ex/gossip monger/shit stirrer declares that, “SHE is a HE!”, “HE is a SHE!” “HE is really a straight dude with 10 kids and only god knows why his avatar plays gay!” “SHE is a transvestite stripper in Las Vegas!” You can honestly say, “…so?” If they are a good friend to you. If they mean that much to you, then their gender, living situation, whatever irl, is irrelevant.
Don’t loan people significant amounts of money.
I know this seems like a no brainer but it happens. Nobody that has a computer that’s good enough to run SL needs your money. Sure, buy that friend a pizza on the other side of the country, buy the ones you love gifts! But never agree to pay hundreds of dollars towards a sim tier or project. SL should be fun and relatively low cost. Anyone that tells you any different is trying to sell you something. You won’t be getting that money back.
The people that are the most cruel are the saddest people in SL and it’s ok to feel sorry for them.
Seriously. There’s something wrong with their life and since misery loves company what better audience than our little microcosm. Maybe they are physically ill, maybe they have family members that are particularly difficult to take care of, maybe they are not content with their lives. What people need to understand is that they are the center of the universe…at least while they’re in SL. You don’t have to tolerate their vitriol, but you also don’t need to put up with it. Turning your back on bad behavior will end their stupidity once their audience disappears and pointing it out to fellow residents is a good thing. People should know. The sooner everyone’s on the same page the sooner these people can work on being constructive.
Being vague or anonymous doesn’t solve anything. I understand that nobody wants to be the bad guy but by being perfectly willing to complain about something yet not reveal what you’re talking about makes you seem weak. You have an issue? Speak up or don’t speak. If it’s truly a problem it benefits the community if everyone knows. That’s kind of the point yeah? I mean, if you know what you’re going to say is shallow and petty how about not say anything at all.
Don’t be so serious!
A little levity never killed anyone…and face it. You might be this god(dess) in Second Life but we all know you’re in your jammies sipping your whatever with your hair all over the place like everyone else. Trufact: I got married in my jammies.
About Eve Petlyakov:
When I was a wee nooblet I never imagined that my virtual life would be what it is today. Like a few other stories I’ve read, in late 2007 I was in a bad relationship. That New Years Eve my boyfriend of 6 years left for a party without me. I got home thinking I’d change and we’d be off to welcome in the new year together. Instead I got home to a dark apartment…and no note.
Feeling sorry for myself I turned on the laptop he bought me as a means of making my computer time portable so that I wasn’t taking up space in his home office, and recalled him saying, “I’m surprised you’re not in Second Life.” So I went to the website, downloaded it, and a few minutes later Eve Petyakov rezzed on the grid for the first time. My goal in this brave new world was to live a simple and happy life. Nailed it. In the real I’m healthy, gainfully employed, blissfully single but dating here and there, with a loving family and wonderful friends. Nailed it twice.
If the denizens of Second Life have taught me anything it’s that I am unimaginably lucky.
A pictorial history of Eve’s Second Life can be seen on her flickr page: http://www.flickr.com/photos/evepetlyakov/
Her ramblings and whinings can be found on Plurk: http://www.plurk.com/TheEvePetlyakov
She also blogs with her partner Winter Jefferson at: http://incoldbloodsl.blogspot.com/