Double Threat

Berry’s Monday Meme on Wednesday? Why not? 🙂 This week it’s a Double Threat.

Double Threat

Two online screen names you’ve had:

My original screen name when I first started chatting online was Tinkerbelle. Shut up, I was 15. I was also Lady Grace in a text based RPG that I played for a while.

Two video games you’ve played:

Dragon Age: Origins and Skyrim.

Two things you love about Second Life:

I love the creativity and I love being able to be with people I love every day.

Two things you’ve done in Second Life:

I had a beautiful wedding and I wrote articles for a couple of magazines.

Two things you still want to do in Second Life:

I want to learn how to make mesh one day. And … I’d like to be invited to blog some big events without having to apply. *laughs*

Two things you like about your Second Life avatar:

I like my avatar’s face [which is why I’ll probably never wear a mesh head] and I like just the overall shape of my av’s body.

Two of your Second Life Pet Peeves:

That alpha glitch that makes it so you can’t stand in front of certain trees and items without having that clear “halo” around the hair and when people refuse to use the ankle lock in their pics so their heels hit the back of their legs. IT LOOKS DUMB, DON’T DO IT.

Two things you did as a newb that you’re embarrassed of:

When I first started in 2006, we could map ANYONE on our friends list, so on occasion, I mapped this guy I was dating to make sure he really was dancing on camping pads for $L and not with some other girl. LOL!! Ummm… and at some point I put on a new hair base, but I didn’t know that hair base = eyebrows and so I thought my skin had changed because suddenly I looked SUPER SURPRISED and I was embarrassed that I didn’t know what had happened to my skin, so I saved up and bought a new one. *laughs*

Two of your closest friends in Second Life:

Aldwyn and… the rest of my family. ❤ I can't pick favorites.

Two of the most beloved things in your inventory:

My wedding ring and a rose by Light Waves that I put out in every house I owned up until recently since it’s like 24 prims and ain’t nobody got time for that.

Why You Gotta Be So Mean?

Don’t you hate when you need something that you just washed and now you can’t go to bed until the dryer finishes? Of course, the item in question is the towel my cat sleeps on and as she has me trained to be her slave, so I’m up at 1:30am waiting on the towel to dry. I am such a sucker.

But, that gives me a chance to do Miss Berry’s new Monday Meme – Mean Comments edition.

Why You Gotta Be So Mean?

1. Have you ever been subjected to mean comments online by strangers? If not, then skip to question #5.

Oh gosh, of course. You don’t spend any time online in social areas and NOT get told something awful. You don’t become a blogger without people throwing every mistake you’ve ever made back in your face when you write about changes you’ve made. It’s just the way of the internet.

2. How did you respond to them?

Usually I just ignore it. The times I’ve fought back, it has lead to me shaking, crying, and being in a foul mood for days.

3. How did they make you feel?

Well, it really depends on the comment and the day! Sometimes I feel really bad. Sometimes I’m really super amused. It kind of depends on who said it, too. Strangers can’t hurt me the way friends can, you know?

4. Can you share some of the mean comments you’ve received and your thoughts on them?

I don’t have any saved. That’s not something I keep around. 🙂 But I’ve been told that I’m stupid, that I’m disappointing, that I don’t deserve good things. There’s always the “Omg, you’re so fat and ugly IRL” comments, too, but I feel that’s a cop out when someone can’t think of anything more to say and they know they’ve basically lost the “fight.”

5. Have you ever ridiculed or negatively commented on someone else’s work, actions or personality with the intention to hurt them?

Unfortunately, yes. Something that most people don’t know about me because I control it pretty well is that I have an incredible temper. I don’t go specifically looking to be some internet troll, but if provoked enough, I can bite back pretty hard. I go for whatever I think is the weakest spot and hit hard and fast. It is not something I’m proud of at all, believe me. But it does not happen often because I tend not to let myself get dragged into internet fights and I have learned when to just shut my mouth. On occasion when it happens, I usually feel horrible for weeks afterwards. I don’t forgive myself as easily as I forgive others, I’m sorry to say. But it’s helpful because it reminds me, “Hey. Shut up. You don’t need to say that. Walk away.”

And on that note, I’m shutting up for the night because the towel is dry and I can put it back on the corner of my bed where the Spoiled Princess sleeps. [10 points if you know that name!] Goodnight!

First and Recent

So Miss Berry has a new meme for us – first and recent! This one is easy. Just put your first blog pic side by side with a recent pic. This is the first picture that ever appeared in my blog in early January 2008 next to one I took earlier this afternoon.

First and Recent

I didn’t start off as a fashion blogger, of course. I started blogging because I don’t know how to not write about my life. Plus I was going through a lot back then and I needed to write as a distraction, and a therapy. I also didn’t post any pics in my first few posts. I have no idea why. I just…didn’t. This photo is one I took at a freebie “photo studio” place that I found in some mall. I’m covered in freebies. I had found a club that was active enough and they had, of course, an Angels and Demons event. I didn’t win, although I think I should have. I was GLOWING. LOL!

I’ve learned so much about taking decent enough pics in SL since that time. And the way SL does photos is so much better now than it was in 2008. Shadows, depth of field, windlight. We didn’t have all that for a long long time. Plus, I know how to take BIG pics now. This one was so small, I had to shrink today’s pic down a lot. *laughs*

Ugh. Thank God everything got better for photos, that’s all I gotta say!

I’m Off Again In My World

I’m late with Berry’s new meme, “Second Life Made Me Learn…” I’ve been thinking about it since Monday, actually, but with the switch to WordPress, building our yard sale area for The Arcade, and various other things, I just haven’t gotten around to writing. But tonight I’ve got some time to really put into words things that I’ve thought about on this topic.

I'm Off Again In My World

It would be really easy to list the basics. Second Life made me learn Photoshop, a program I had barely heard of before, much less used. Of course, I still don’t really know what I’m doing in it 99% of the time and I’m just pushing buttons. SL made me learn how to use basic DJ software and how to keep a party at least somewhat active. SL made me learn how to be a better writer because we live in a world where appearance is easily changed so what we say is what matters.

But it goes further than that for me. After all, I’ve been here a long time and had many experiences. If I hadn’t learned more, I’d be disappointed in myself.

SL has taught me that it’s okay to just be me. This was a lesson that was not easily learned. I spent a lot of time and energy in my early days wanting so badly to be someone else, someone better, someone who could be everything to everyone I met. I was dealing with a lot of grief that was tearing me apart little by little. I was hurting badly before I came here but pretending so damn hard that everything was okay. I read old journal entries from the year before I was introduced to SL and it’s so apparent that things weren’t right. I was drinking too much, making very unsafe choices, and I was obsessed with things that weren’t good for me. I came to SL and I thought, great! Here is a chance to be someone that I’m not! For a couple of weeks, I’ll play this game where I can just be whatever I want and it doesn’t matter what other people think.

This was my mistake.

But in the past few years, I’ve just been me. SL has taught me that if I feel someone isn’t good for me, I don’t need to devote my time to them. If I love someone, I can let them know. They’re not required to love me back, but I can still care about them without requiring anything more from them. If someone says they love me, I don’t have to reciprocate if I don’t feel it. If someone hurts me, I have the choice of forgiving them and then letting them go, or forgiving them and patching up our friendship. If I hurt someone, I can apologize and hope they accept it. Sometimes they will not and that’s okay. Friendship isn’t about what someone else can do for me, or what I can do for them. It’s about how we make each other feel. Positive people bring out the best in me. I’m not required to be someone’s entertainment or someone’s fantasy. If I have a bad day, I can tell people without the fear that they’ll turn their backs on me until I have more to offer them.

Second Life made me learn how to accept myself.

And now that I’ve done all this thinking, I can go back to squealing over the lovely Arcade vendor ads. That’s another thing SL made me learn. I’m EXCEPTIONALLY girly and if you make something pink, sparkly, and put a bunny or a butterfly on it, I’m going to do anything to make it mine. *sighs*

Why, yes, I have SecondLifed.

I’ve been working on our little park area the past two nights. It’s getting there. It’s actually quite comfortable now and I kind of prefer to spend my SL time outdoors rather than in the house these days. Aldwyn and I were sitting out there last night and his biggest question was “Do we get wifi out here in the park?”

Duh. OF COURSE WE DO! *laughs*

Why Yes, I Have SecondLifed

Strawberry made a new meme called “Have you ever SecondLifed?” It just so happens that I have, so I decided to answer the questions in my long winded way.

1. Have you ever owned a sim in Second Life?

* Yep! I’ve owned Bluebonnet since September 13, 2008. Want to come live near me? I have a parcel open! IM me to find out more! /shameless plug

2. Have you ever created content in Second Life?

* Of course! I sell like 10 of the famed Blingis a month. I have no idea WHY I sell them, but people seem to like it enough to pay me a $1L for it. *laughs* I also do nail polish for Slink hands on occasion [not often any more] and I used to have a store back in 2008 where I created random things like belts that had stuff hanging off of them and crappy prim furniture.

3. Have you ever driven a vehicle in Second Life?

* Soooo many times. I’m not very good at driving, though. I’m much better at walking.

4. Have you ever gone sky diving in Second Life?

* Oh God, yes. I even have my own skydiving pod thing. Remember, skydiving is how we asked Birdy to be our daughter!

5. Have you ever played a sport in Second Life?

* Hmm. You know, I really don’t think I have. Unless you count bowling?

6. Have you ever gone clubbing in Second Life?

* Ohhhh yes. I spent the first year of my original SLife basically living in a club that I worked at. We’ve been going a little more often lately with Lolita and Takeo when the kids are in bed.

7. Have you ever fangirled/fanboyed someone in Second Life?

* Unfortunately. *laughs* Before plurk and before I got to know creators well, I thought most of them were just these intimidating, amazing things. I still find some of them amazing, but it’s hard to fangirl when you know that most of them are eating pizza and hanging out in their PJs while they work in Blender.

8. Have you ever taken a picture of your avatar in water in Second Life?

* Multiple times. There are many things in SL that just look crazy, but Linden water is really one of the things that SL does exceptionally well, and it’s nice to take pics in it.

9. Have you ever taken a picture of a sunset in Second Life?

* Many many times. I used to always put our houses so that our bedroom window would face the sunset. Of course, with windlight, you can basically make sunset wherever you want. Sunset in the north? Sure!

10. Have you ever taken a nude picture of your avatar in Second Life?

* Um, duh? I’d say most women in SL have. Heck, most men, too. Plus, I was a SLuicide Girl when the blog was active and that required a lot of naked. Ms. Trixie Belle, at your service!

11. Have you ever dated in Second Life?

* Nah, I just told Al “We’re getting married” when I met him. *laughs* Of course I have! Not lots, but enough. Dating in SL can be incredibly fun! And even when it’s not fun, it can make for some fantastic stories to tell later.

12. Have you ever had or attended a wedding in Second Life?

* Yes and yes! I’ve been to more weddings than I can count [I’m a great wedding guest. Invite me to yours!] and we had ours in 2011. I’d do it again in a heartbeat, it was beautiful!

13. Have you ever drank, smoked or taken drugs in Second Life?

* My favorite thing for a long time was finding the drinks that would have you stumble around and fall down drunk! I still have one of those “Eat your piece of the sunshine acid!” things that puts a big wavy psychedelic thing on the screen, too.

14. Have you ever engaged in sexual activity in Second Life?

* Berry, you are SO nosy. But yes. 🙂

15. Have you ever been to Bukkake Bliss in Second Life?

* Yes! We used to go when there was nothing else to do, usually on an alt, just to be jerks. I have an alt named… Busty or Chesty, I can’t remember now, and I made her look like Snooki circa 2009 [btw, have you seen Snooki now? She’s grown up well! She’s so pretty!] and I’d be stumbling all over Bukkake Bliss while people were trying to get it on. Got hit on a lot, but most of it was just “Come sit on this poseball.” No thanks, noobfreenie. No thanks.

I really gotta go remember that poor alt’s name. I have a feeling I left her at Bukkake Bliss.

So Much Better!

Hey, it’s a Berry meme! I couldn’t resist doing this one because as I mentioned earlier, I also got a new computer this month. Although, after looking at her new set up, mine is definitely not as fancy! That’s okay, though. She does way more pics than I do. 🙂 I’m just thrilled to death that I’ve been able to hang out with my family, run around for hours, do gyazo gifs, and no crashes and barely any lag. It’s awesome!

So Much Better!

1. Share any of your computer specs (video card, memory, etc..) Click here if you don’t know any of those things or just share the year you bought it.

* I fully admit to being the least techy type person ever and I have no idea what any of this actually means. My computer is a Dell Insperion 3847. Processor is Intel Core i5-4460. 8GB of RAM. Video card is nVidia GeForce GTX 550Ti. I have Microsoft Windows 7 64-bit Service Pack 1.

2. Which viewer do you use most often?

* I use Firestorm, the 64 bit one now. I’ve heard the official SL viewer is good these days, but I need to use a viewer with RLV because the girls use the Yuus/Nuu HUD and it’s required for that. I don’t like to have more than one viewer installed on my computer at any time because I’ve heard switching back and forth a lot can lead to inventory loss. But again, I’m not techy, so that could have been a load of smoke. 🙂

3. What is your FPS (Frames Per Second) when you have your graphics on ultra?

I turned it on Ultra to take this picture and it booped on down to 7.2 FPS. That’s probably not awesome, huh? LOL! But when I have it on high and don’t have shadows on, it’s 80 FPS. I only turn on ultra to take pics, so I guess it’s okay. Turning shadows on tends to make tiny mesh look gross [as you can see on my glasses] so I don’t have shadows on too often. If there’s a setting to make tiny mesh not look icky, please let me know.

4. How often does Second Life crash for you? Is it usually just a viewer crash or your whole system crashes? What are you usually doing at the moment of the crash?

* I have not crashed once since getting my new computer!! Before, with my old one, I couldn’t turn around in our house without crashing. I couldn’t even be IN the house half the time, and forget it if other people were around me. If I was anywhere with a sim surround? Pfft. That was almost an instant crash unless I could derender it real fast. It seemed like sometimes all I had to do was breathe and I’d crash on my old computer. This one is sooooooo much better!!!!

5. Do you know of any tips or tricks in the settings that would improve performance?

* Well, on Firestorm, I tend to disable the bridge thinger and not wear it. On my old computer, that helped a lot. Also, I turn off the HTTP textures thing. I don’t know what that does, but I know on my old computer, it helped. I also don’t have on anisotropic filtering most of the time, unless I’m taking pics. And I don’t know exactly what this does, but I uncheck the “Enable Streamed VBOs” box, too. Supposedly that helps. I’m not sure where most of that is on any other viewer, but on Firestorm it’s under the Hardware tab under Graphics in your preferences. Even though I probably don’t HAVE to do any of that now, I still do it kind of out of habit.

If anyone knows how to make my antialiasing look better, though, please let me know. For some reason since getting my new computer, I feel like I lost a setting or something because I have the AA at 4x in my viewer and it’s not QUITE as smooth as on my old craptastic computer. And also, please help a girl out and tell me how to make mesh look better when shadows are on! It’s sad when my necklaces get all crazy looking, you know?

Yard Sale and Too Many Questions

We met up with the Oleanders tonight to chat and hang out while Lolita set up for our upcoming Arcade yard sale. I hope you guys come to shop! I’ve been making my list just based off of some Flickr pics I’ve seen, but you know once that shopping guide comes out, I’m going to give Aldwyn a heart attack. *laughs* I love the hours leading up to the event when the family is all together! This will be Birdy’s first Arcade night with us so I’m excited to share it with her.

Yard Sale and Too Many Questions

Miss Berry came up with another meme for us – 20 Questions! Y’all know I like to talk, so here we go. 🙂

1. When and how did you discover Second Life?

I discovered it in 2006 through a former friend. She read an article about it, tried it, and since I was a huge Sims fan, of course I was interested.

2. Did you know about virtual worlds before or was this your first experience with them?

I had been part of a text based RPG that I guess was kind of like a virtual world, except we RPed without avatars. But other than that, no.

3. Has Second Life met your expectations?

I guess I didn’t really have any. I thought I’d play hard for a couple of weeks and then stop, much like I did with the Sims. Obviously, that didn’t happen!

4. If you could teleport back to the first ten minutes of your avatar’s slife, what would you tell yourself?

There are real people behind the avatars! Don’t hurt them and hopefully they won’t hurt you!

5. How long did it take you to master avatar flying and driving vehicles inworld?

I was always pretty decent at flying. I’m still working on the driving. I’m sure I’ll get it one day!

6. Do you have a mystery alt?

I do, actually! Well, she’s not a mystery mystery, in that a couple of people know about her. But I use her to sell something silly on marketplace. I don’t think I’ve actually logged into her in well over a year. Maybe closer to 2.

7. Is your SL avatar a reflection of you, or someone you wished you could be?

I feel like my avatar is an extension of me. I speak to people in world basically the same way I would if I met them locally. My avatar looks how I feel inside. But through my avatar, I get to have some things [like the kids and being a fashion blogger] that I can’t have/do in RL, so that’s pretty cool.

8. Is there an individual you met in SL that inspired you in your RL? How?

Pretty much everyone I meet in SL that I become close to inspires me in my RL in some way. But I think the one that inspired me the most was Renee. She taught me that no matter how bad I think my life is being, I can always find ways to be happy.

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 it’s probably faster to create a bond with someone online because we HAVE to talk here. If you meet someone in RL, you do things with them. Movies, dinners, running in the park, etc. Here, we chat. Even if we’re out dancing at a party, we’re probably chatting. You learn more about people that way.

10. Did you ever imagine or believe people could fall in love with someone they never met before Second Life?

Oh yes. I’d seen it happen. I was a “regular” in a Yahoo chatroom from 1998-200something and many of the regulars there ended up falling in love before they met in person. In fact, I brought my bestie into the chatroom and she ended up meeting a guy in there who is now her husband! 🙂 Funny thing is, I actually met him in person before she did. I consider him my brother in law now.

11. How has your perspective of dating changed (or not) since you started playing second life?

Dating in SL, I assume? Well, hopefully I don’t have to do that again. *laughs* I’m perfectly happy being Aldwyn’s SL wife. If we ever divorced, I don’t think I’d bother dating anyone else. Let’s face it, who else would be able to handle allllll of this???

12. How has your perspective of employment changed (or not) since you started playing second life?

I think it’s been good for me to see that people can make money without being tied to a desk for 8 hours a day, or stuck behind a register. Going back into an office setting when I’m able to work again fills me with such dread, I want to cry. I was great at it, but man, did I hate it.

13. Name three things in both your lives that overlap each other significantly.

Definitely the friendships. I have a few of my SL friends on my RL Facebook and Instagram, so it’s fun getting to interact with them outside of SL. I can’t think of much else because I don’t really do much else in SL. *snickers*

14. If you could live your life more immersively in a virtual world, would you? (Kind of like the Matrix)

I think I would, actually. As long as I could still have time for my RL things, I’d love to be able to be more IN when I’m in world. I’ve had brief glimpses of it, like when we’re “having a meal” with the family or something like that, and it’s super fun!

15. How do you think behavior changes for people if they’re inworld vs in real world? Why do you think that is?

I think because people are mostly anonymous, they let the more negative side of their personality out. I see a TON of “I can’t be bothered, I hate people, everyone sucks, I can’t stand this/that/the other thing and if you like it, you’re stupid” from folks and I know they can’t possibly be THAT dang unpleasant in their RL day to day activities because they’d be punched in the face a lot. But I think it’s mostly for attention, too. If someone is all negative and venty, people will join in because it’s easy. Being negative is easy, being happy takes some work.

16. How has second life consumerism changed your perception of spending habits, the value of money, the need to be “bleeding edge” with fashion?

Over the past few years, I’ve moved away from having to have the best of the best of the newest. I still have new things. I still have awesome things. But I’m not like other bloggers and I’m okay with that. I shop when I like something. I try not to think about how much I’ve spent. *laughs*

17. Do you think virtual worlds like SL drive and redefine human interaction or do they narrow and limit it?

I think the internet as a whole has redefined human interaction. Would I have friends in Germany, England, Scotland, New Zealand, without the internet? Nope. Second Life is a upgrade from chatrooms, which were an upgrade from bulletin boards, which … etc. I’ve expanded my horizons. I think we’ll continue to do that.

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?

I don’t think I quite get this question. I think people who are close to me know what I’m feeling at any given time. If I really don’t want them to know, I hide it, but that’s pretty rare with the people I’m closest to. My SL/RL lines are blurred like crazy.

19. Name three skills you attribute to having learned or honed in second life alone.

Photoshop, home decorating, and… how to let go when I need to.

20. If your grand kids googled your Second Life Avatar’s name, would they be intrigued, disgusted, proud or something else?

I’ll never have grandkids, but even if I did, by that time, they’ll probably be running around in Fourth Life.