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*

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Day 217 – God Berry, Y U SO NOSY??

It’s time for yet another meme from Berry!

Day 217 - God Berry, Y U SO NOSY??

1. How long have you been blogging?

Since forever? LOL! I’ve kept diaries all my life, and have been online journaling since 2002 or so, but this blog started in December 2007.

2. Why did you start blogging?

Quite honestly, I don’t know how to NOT write about my life. It’s as normal as breathing to me. This blog started because I needed something to do and I had a project in my head. But even without the project, I would have done it anyway. I started fashion blogging because people who liked THIS blog liked me enough to start giving me things although I was not a fashion blogger at the time. I wanted to keep this blog just for my randomness so that’s why I started a new one just for fashion type stuff. I don’t want to be on any feeds with this blog just so I can talk shit when I want. :-p

3. How many times a week do you post an entry?

Oh god…I’ve been so lazy recently. Well, lazy in blogging because I’ve been busy in RL. So on a good week, I’ll do 3-4 posts in this blog, and maybe 2 for the fashion blog. But I really need to step it up.

4. How many different blogs do you read on a regular basis?

Oh man, I can’t even count. I read so many blogs, both SL and RL. But it seems like everyone has a blog these days, so it’s almost impossible to go a day without reading SOMEONE’S blog, you know?

5. Do you comment on other peopleโ€™s blogs?

Sometimes! Not as often as I should, but I do try to reach out here and there.

6. Do you keep track of how many visitors you have?

Not really. It’s not a big deal to me. I would rather have a small, dedicated group of readers than thousands of hits a day of people who don’t actually care about what I’m writing. And let’s face it – even if I only had a couple of people who came here every time I posted, I’d still be writing anyway. In the long run, I’m writing because I love it, not for popularity.

7. Did you ever regret a post that you wrote?

Mmm…I won’t say REGRET, but I do wish I hadn’t written some things here and there just because it caused unnecessary drama for myself. Like the whole Inworldz craziness, and the thing with our wedding guest list. But if I ever really regretted something, I probably wouldn’t write it in the first place. We have a delete button for a reason. Even things I’ve written that caused some drama taught me something in the end. [Like, I will never ever go to Inworldz and some people have big mouths. LOL!]

8. Do you think your readers have a true sense of who you are based on your blog?

Mostly! I write like I speak – usually – and since this blog is really just about my life, it would be weird if they didn’t know who I was at this point. ๐Ÿ™‚ I don’t like bloggers who try to prove how amazing they are, or how deep they are, or how mysterious they are, so I try not to do that myself. And hopefully I don’t come off as too pretentious or snotty. I feel like I write in a way that someone could say, “Yeah, I totally get that.” At least, I hope I do. But if you really want to know ME, it’s probably better to just talk to me outside of blog comments.

9. Do you blog under your real name?

Yep! Not here, obviously, but I do have a couple of blogs that have my name on them. I am a lot worse about updating those, though.

10. Are there topics that you would never blog about?

Of course! You’d have to be kind of naive to blog every single thing that crosses your mind or that is happening in your life, in my opinion.

11. What is the theme/topic of your blog?

Well…this one is obviously mostly about the random things I do in Second Life, although I write about my offline life as well from time to time. I will never be one of those “SL IS SL AND RL IS RL” kind of people because to me, the line is very much blurred. My feelings don’t shut off the moment I log out, and my RL issues aren’t pushed from my head the moment I log in. And my style blog is obviously about SL fashion and stuff. That’s a no brainer. ๐Ÿ™‚

12. Do you have more than one blog? If so, why?

Oh yes. I have my two SL blogs, I have a couple of RL blogs [one for regular stuff and one for health related stuff], and I have two Tumblrs [although I don’t actually consider those blogs] that I use for keeping funny things and keeping Fitspo type things. I still have a Live Journal, too, although that one is updated maybe twice a year at this point just because most of my closer LJ friends are on my Facebook.

13. What have you found to be the benefits of blogging?

Besides glory and fame and free swag? :-p Kidding! I just love to write. I love being able to look back and say “Oh my God, yes! That happened!!” I’ve met wonderful people through my blogs and since SL blogs are useless without pics, my Photoshop skills have improved as well.

14. So, why do you continue to blog?

It’s my thing. It’s who I am. If I wasn’t SL blogging, I’d be blogging somewhere else for some other topic. I know I’ll keep writing for the rest of my life, even if I have to scratch out my words with a stick in the dirt. ๐Ÿ™‚

Day 215 – Do you remember the first time…

So after being sick for a week, I’m finally feeling like blogging. I’ve had respiratory issues my entire life and it just wears me out when I actually get sick. This is why I take vitamins, get a flu shot, and try to keep our house as pollen free as humanly possible. Of course, when someone insists on keeping the windows open for 3 days straight when we’re in the middle of some super high pollen days… well, something’s gonna give. :-p I’m happy to get back into SL, though, because I missed our little beach.

Day 215 - Do you remember the first time....

AND I’m glad I feel a little better today because there’s a new meme from Berry! This one is about our 10 SL firsts. I’m just going to use my firsts from THIS av because quite frankly, I barely remember a lot of the stuff from my first av, and I’m sure there are a few people who would rather I forget them anyway. LOL!

I’m also going to try to add pictures where I can because I think that’s more fun.

1. First SL Friend: The first person I met that I had on my friends list was a guy named Fudo. He was pretty decent and we explored a bit together. I thought I had a picture of us at this crazy place we’d gone to see, but I guess I don’t. I didn’t use Flickr much originally.

2. First SL Kiss: I actually don’t remember his name. At all. He was a guy I met while exploring clubs in early January 2008 and we talked and talked while dancing and then he kissed me. We stopped talking by the end of the next day.

3. First SLex time/place/partner: Berry, you’re naughty. LOL! It was in April 2008 with a guy named Levi. This is obviously not a picture of the event, but I believe it was that same night.

Ali & Levi

4. First SL Partner/Girlfriend/Boyfriend/Wife/Husband: That goes to Levi again. We were hanging out with Cen and Dyami [June 2008] and while we were playing around with them, he asked me to partner. Of course, we unpartnered barely 3 months later, but that’s SL for ya.

Water fight!

5. First SL Job: Hostess at Liquid Rage. It was a brand new club and the staff members were really really kind to me. I don’t talk to any of them now, though.

My first event!

6. First SL Creation: It was this thing. I still don’t know what I was attempting to make.

Textured

7. First Encounter with a Linden: Honestly, I don’t remember. But I do have this picture from February 2008 of Mia and Ekim back when LL did the valentine sims, so I’m assuming this was the first.

Mia & Ekim

8. First Encounter with a SLebrity: I feel like I should remember this given that I used to fangirl a LOT more than I do now. I want to say it was Sioxie Legend. She used to have the store Second Wave Apparel and I used to LOVE that store. I want to say it was her, but really, I just don’t know and my blog is being of no help.

9. First SL Sim you fell in love with: Oh that’s easy! The Pillow Talk sim! I used to go and just spend hours down on the grounds, going in and out of the houses, sitting by the water. It was my favorite place EVER. I still go there sometimes just to remember things.

Thinking

10. First SL Blog Post: Let’s…let’s not talk about it. Seriously. I don’t even like to go back and read it because it wasn’t good and it embarrasses me. LOL! I just… no. No.

Thanks for this walk down memory lane, Berry! I need to go back and try to figure some stuff out now because while I was flipping through some old blog posts, I discovered some stories I’d forgotten about! โ™ฅ

Day 214 – Ya know what grinds my gears?

So Miss Berry did it again and gave us a new meme – Pet Peeves! So immediately I thought of that Family Guy episode where Peter gets a news segment “You Know What Really Grinds My Gears?” and he just comes up with just the most random junk that he hates. I feel like that’s totally me.

This picture also has nothing to do with the meme, but I thought it was cute, so I’m using it today.

Day 214 - Ya know what grinds my gears?

Please remember that these are MY opinions and if you get butthurt, that’s kind of not my problem. ๐Ÿ™‚

My Pet Peeves:

1. Terraforming!! Not the whole act of it really, but there aren’t enough controls! You know what I really want when I’m terraforming? A PUSH control. Sometimes I don’t want to have to lower and smooth and flatten. I just want to shove a piece of land to the side. And the select feature! Does it always have to be a square? Why can’t we take a tip from Photoshop and have like a magic lasso so we can draw where we need to do stuff! It would really make for more interesting sims.

2. Creators and bloggers who have a very undeserved sense of accomplishment. Okay, so you made a dress or a pair of pants or a chair or a pose. Hundreds of designers make dresses and pants and chairs and poses every single day. There’s a good chance yours are not any better than any one else’s, so why do you think that you’re so damn amazing, everyone should be beating down your door to buy your stuff? And bloggers! Look, a monkey could blog. It might not be a good blog, but it’ll be a blog. Some bloggers do an AMAZING job and I fully admit that and they should celebrate that. But in most cases, your blog isn’t all that much more special than any other blog and if you’re upset that no one is throwing you a party every time you post something, that’s all on you. In both cases, you should do it because YOU love doing it, not because you expect accolades.

3. People on plurk who plurk almost nothing but private jokes to a few special people in public OR who use it to rant Every. Single. Day. It’s social media – be social! Invite other people to be in on the joke once in a while or just take it to private plurk so the rest of us don’t have to see it. Stop telling the world everything that’s bad in your life and tell them what is good! And if you ARE going to rant, tell us EXACTLY why you are ranting, don’t just use it as your little attention whorey spot of the web because when something truly IS bad? No one is going to care.

4. People who think their shape is the end all and be all of Second Life. Honey, with a few tweaks to the sliders, anyone could look just like you. But the chances are that if you think your shape is so amazingly special that you haven’t changed it since 2006, it probably sucks.

5. Customers who won’t take the time to read anything. I do a little bit of Ulaa’s customer service if she’s offline and someone IMs me, and it never ceases to amaze me how many people simply don’t READ anything. I’ve noticed this in store groups, too. If you want customer service, read the creator’s profile. Usually that’s where you’ll find a landmark to the store, return policies, how to get a hold of them, and if they prefer notecards or IMs. [If you’re in business in SL and you DON’T have this stuff in your profile, you’re doing it wrong.] IMing them with simply “Hey” won’t usually get you a response. Figure out what you need, find out the best way to get customer service, and go from there. Then WAIT. WAIT. These people have real lives too and your 89 cent problem is not always top priority!

You know…surprisingly, I had to struggle a bit with this list. I have way more pet peeves in RL than I do in SL at this point. Progress, I say! ๐Ÿ™‚

Day 208 – And we were swangin’

Earlier today I put out a swingset from What Next. When Aldwyn logged in tonight, that’s where he found me.

Day 208 - And we were swangin'

Is it considered swinging if you’re on the glider thing? I would assume so.

Anyway, I should be getting in bed or finishing up a pic for the style blog, but I don’t wanna, so I will do Berry’s Procrastination Meme instead. ๐Ÿ˜€ And hopefully I won’t get as long winded as with the last meme.

1. What is the rez date for your current SL Avatar that you use most often?

November 26, 2007 is when Alicia was born. It was, looking back, probably the worst and best day of my life. ๐Ÿ™‚

2. Where was the first place you made friends as a newb and got to know people in Second Life?

Under this av, I would have to say … some infohub that I’ve now forgotten the name. I think it was near The Shelter? I sat around there for a bit and eventually a couple of guys started talking to me, and one of them was super nice and took me exploring. He’s still on my friends list, as a matter of fact, although I have not seen him log on in years, and I haven’t talked to him since probably early January 2008.

3. Where do you spend most of your SL time now?

Mostly Bluebonnet these days. I don’t really like clubs or most beaches, no one really invites me anywhere [and, let’s face it, I’ve forgotten how to hang out with most people], and I can’t shop ALL of the time. We have a pretty awesome home and there’s always something to do here. I feel safe on the island.

4. Who is your closest friend in Second Life? (only pick one)

I CAN’T PICK JUST ONE, STRAWBERRY. Aldwyn and Ulaa tie for the title of my closest friend.

5. What is your favorite thing in your inventory? (only pick one)

God, Berry. What’s with the hard questions?! :-p If I HAVE to pick just one thing… Probably my rose from Light Waves. I bought it at the Black Swan before it closed when I was going through kind of a crappy time in my SLife. It just reminds me that beautiful roses grow out of dirt and manure.

6. The last thing you purchased in Second Life?

The Hangover tank from Drift. I had to go back into my transaction history to look and realized I haven’t shopped since the 18th. But yet my inventory has grown. What the eff.

7. What color clothing does your avatar wear most often?

Probably aqua, with white and pink coming in neck and neck. I’m a sucker for girly pastels.

8. Do you prefer to walk, run or fly?

I like to run! The funniest thing in the world to me, and I usually only do it when I’m alone on the island, is to turn my AO off and just RUN. It’s hysterical!!!!

9. What is the craziest thing youโ€™ve ever done in SL?

Oh honey…no. Some things are better left unsaid.

10. Who would you like to play YOU, in the movie of your SLife?

Umm….probably Elizabeth Olsen. What? She’s kinda pretty in a weird way, which is how I feel about my avatar most of the time.

Inspired

This is a great little meme from the mind of Zoe Connolly, and since I have nothing else to talk about today, and I’m waiting for laundry to finish, I thought I’d get it done. ๐Ÿ™‚

So who inspired my avatar?

I didn’t really have an idea in my head of what I wanted to look like when I started on my shape tweaking. I wanted to be beautiful, I knew that much. I wanted to be somewhat petite [although I am taller than I was for months], and I wanted to be slender but still with some curves. Basically, I wanted to be what I have never been in my real world.

My face came about after many careful tweakings. I have never wanted the little pucker mouth that is so popular, although in doing that, I’ve given up the right to wear probably 75% of the skins out there because they are more designed for that mouth. When I put them on, I have huge Bratz lips and that’s never good.

The funny part is that a few people who have seen my RL photo say that my avatar’s face looks like me. I know they’re being polite in not adding “if you lost 300 pounds,” but it makes me laugh because in certain skins, my face looks like a much younger version of my mother. So I guess in a way, my avatar has been inspired by my desire to look more like the majority of the women in my family. Small, beautiful, delicate.

The clothing I dress my avatar in are much like I would [and sometimes do] dress like in my real world. The cute skirts, great jeans, t-shirts and halter tops, flip flops, etc. Although my avatar wears heels that I would certainly break my ankles in, and lingerie that I would be embarrassed to death to wear in front of anyone, the style really is my own. I prefer my Second Life to be better than my first, but still close to it, with bits of fantasy thrown in here and there. Unlike those who consistently are able to pull off the better fantasy look, I feel more comfortable simply being me, but a prettier me.

So I guess the real answer to the question is just that: The me I feel I am inside, the one that isn’t easily seen in the real world, that is my inspiration. I’m not perfect, and neither is my avatar. There are times when I’m having body issues in the real world that I project upon her [usually seen through my “My avatar is fat” comments], but I’m able to work through them that way. I use her to do things, to speak my mind, to remember that I’m competent and intelligent. Through her, I have grown and become a better person.

Hmm…so really, who is the inspiration? Me, or her? I guess we’re both just inspiring each other.

Probably NSFW – Tasteful booty shot!!

So Marnix started a blog meme. And the meme? Tasteful naked butt pictures.

I don’t know either.

I’ve never shown a lot of nudity in this blog. I don’t think I’ve ever appeared in less than a bikini. In fact, I remember dying during the Dress Me Up Challenge because the first picture was in my underwear. [Don’t give me that BS about it just being pixels. I love and respect my pixels because they are mine.] And there were other reasons why I have always been reserved.

But, times they are a-changin’, and after thinking about it, and being encouraged by my friends [the girls more than the guys, if you can believe that. Well, if you know my friends, you can believe that.], I decided to do it. So I set about taking a photo that I believed was tasteful, but showed off my backside.

I’m sorry if you didn’t want to see the picture. But I did warn you in the title. ๐Ÿ™‚

In the flowers