I think I’m out of my mind . . .
In one very real sense, everyone in-world is out of their mind. We have consciously transferred our minds, however temporary, into our avatar existence. How we do that and what we become during this period of transference is completely up to us. It is our world and our imagination.
The stark reality is that who I am in-world is pretty much who I am in real life. When I become my avatar, I do not undergo a fundamental change in personality, attitude or belief structure. I become Newbe, but Newbe is really me. The way I treat people in-world is no different than the way I treat people in real life. The biggest difference is that in real life, I cannot start flying on a whim.
Perhaps, in-world I tend to speak a little bit more formally. A little. In real life, I once had someone read a report I had written and comment on my antiquated form of the English language. This, from a gentleman who had learned Latin in grade school! Additionally, I usually don’t call people Miss or Mr in real life. I like the politeness that doing so would bring to the day, but I’m pretty sure I’d see a padded truck nearby should I decide to begin doing so.
But manners of speech are not the same as manners. Polite society, whether in-world or in real life, dictate a certain way of treating each other. Respect for one’s fellow people is fundamental to polite society. One need not agree with the attitudes, actions or beliefs of another, but should respect that others have the right to hold those attitudes and beliefs.
Respect for another’s feelings is critical to a society that wishes to receive respect itself. I won’t go on a rant of global politics. The Lord knows how I feel about that! No, this is about friendships and community in-world, since this blog is about life in-world. Since I first stepped into the vast unknown that is 2ndL, I have been exposed to various communities. I have been accepted into a couple. Two communities come to mind immediately: Caledon and my confidants. I separate my confidants from my friends as there are few in-world that know me better than the very, very small list of friends with whom I feel close enough to discuss true feelings.
Caledon, right from the beginning, accepted me as one of their own. I was treated, and still am treated with politeness. That has not changed. Recent events in my life have made consistent in-world experiences more difficult and elusive, yet I feel that the fundamental politeness of Caledon society has not changed. What has changed is me. Lately, I have felt restless. I have felt that I just don’t belong. I know that there are a few who will say hogwash to this, but I’m sure there are just as many who would say “no, you don’t belong.” They would be right.
They would be right because I have not really been a consistent part of Caledon society for many months. Sure, I pop my head into ISC chat every now and again with my usual irreverent comments, but I have not played a productive part of that society in some time. There have been many changes in Caledon since I’ve been active in-world, and I have missed out on a lot. I seldom hear of events or the day-to-day goings on. There are a great many new citizens that I’ve not met and am quite sure have absolutely no idea who I am, nor would they care. Nor should they care.
Some of my friends have wondered what has happened to me. It has been a combination of many things. First, and most importantly, my real life marital status changed last year. Being newly married, I am happy to spend as much time with my wife as I can. She is my world. She is beautiful, intelligent, exciting and fun. She has given me a renewed zest for life. Of course, she isn’t in-world, so to spend time with her, I cannot spend as much time in-world.
Second, I have gone back to university to work on a degree in business. I still work full-time as an IT manager, so this little venture has take much of my spare time away. I feel that it is worth it as I am getting older in life, but not quite wiser as one would expect to come with age. Sad, that.
Third, I have begun to spend time working on household projects. Sometimes referred to as a honeydo list. ’nuff said.
But enough about me. Caledon always has been and always will be my home. I don’t expect that people will know who I am, nor will they care who I am. After all, I am not a part of their circle. That’s cool. I live with an ethic that has come from a line I once read: “Everyone has my respect from the start. You don’t have to earn it. But God help you if you should do something to lose it.”
That is, perhaps, a bit extreme, but the general sentiment is true for me. Do unto others as you would have others do unto you. Show respect for others and do not lord over them as though you own the world. Give credit where credit is due. They are mottoes to live by.
The last, though, has become particularly pertinent and this is not meant as a specific attack on anyone, but rather has been something that has made me a little sad. My two best friends have recently collaborated on a rather large and beautiful build, which is one of many other builds. It is part of a joint project by Rezzable and Not Possible In Real Life based on a painting by Bosch. Their tower is exquisite, to say the least, and I was very impressed (and a little bit envious!) by their work together. TOGETHER. I’ve heard many people refer to the project as Kheph’s build with little credit given to Miss Laval. Well, that bothers me. It is not Kheph’s build in as much as it is Eladrienne and Kheph’s build. She was the creative force behind the build, but they worked together, 50-50, in turning that creative vision into reality! Their work together is an inspiration in friendship and collaboration.
Teamwork. Friendship. Community. That is what 2ndL inspires and works to bring about. Let’s respect the creative efforts of everyone, not just those we know are talented because of their visibility, but those we SEE are talented. Congratulations Eladrienne and Kheph, on your absolutely beautiful build! It is truly a work of art and a work of friendship!