Friday, August 7, 2009

like a million times before, no dignity or grace, it's the price and not the race

It floated across the Caledon chat...

[19:06] Bamika Easterman: Today's Maid school lesson is "The Naughty Maid." - 2PM and 7PM SLT - All welcome. Full lesson notifications may be found at ( ). The school is located in Caledon Southend at ( ).

I realize I'm in the midst of getting yanked from world, of gritting my teeth at the knowledge that I cannot even grant reliable net connection to fulfill my Radio Riel hosting duties, that I have no idea when I'm going to be pulled back into limbo of an yes, all of this may be making me more friable, emotionally, than usual...

...but SERIOUSLY now, is this necessary?!? EVER???

You know what's the most galling thing about this? No one cares. I'm deadly serious--no one, not one of you, cares. Even as I post this, there are other things I could do--speak to her personally; register a complaint with Des; leave a reply on the Steamlands forum...

...and granted, for this, maybe this blog posting counts, but honestly, this is so far beyond 'wink and a nudge' innuendo...

Last week's "class" of "appropriate kneeling times"...that was pushing the bounds of propriety into the wall.

This week? Forget pushing, we're talking aggravated assault on decency, with a potential rape and battery charge.

This is insane, people. And no one's going to deal with it. Not even me.

Which means Bamika gets to continue exercising her love for fetish in public, with zero controls and apparently mass resident approval--is ANY of this sinking in??

Probably not. It's not right, it's not sane, but no one gives one single silver farthing for standing up and stopping her. NO. ONE.

Not Des. Certainly no estate manager. Definitely no Caledon residents.

No, you're all just jollying her along, "oh, that's just Bamika, you know, she's like that--"

But no one wants to step up and say, No. Not this time. This goes too far.

What happens next week, gentle friends? When she's explored appropriate kneeling practices, with references to Gorean terms, Gorean attire, and the fine art of blowjobs in the parlor? What happens after this week, when the entire thing is how to best portray yourself as a slut for hire?

How to properly conceal a prim pregnancy in formal maid attire?

When is it appropriate to wear heavy rubber and butt plugs to work?

The guidelines for tearing one's mobcap and skirt aside, and pleading to be fucked in front of visiting relatives in the manor house?

I am so far past hinting at this point. It's cowardice to let her go on with this, yet we all let her go on, and WE. DON'T. CARE what she does!

Were it not that she puts "maid" in the titles of her little school postings? They would have NOTHING TO DO with Caledon at large. And it seems like, hiring any maid from her Maid School? Would get you a maid who knew nothing of protocol, nothing of appropriate servile roleplay, nothing of where to get scrubbing and washing animations...

...but everything on how to beg for sex and heavy punishment.

It's sickening. It is anti-Caledon. And everyone puts up with it!

Why? Just ask yourselves that. Why?

Because my only answer to that is that yelling at her in public just gets my stress level up, and doesn't change anything she does by one single pixel, and nothing changes in the least.

So what's your answer, Caledon?

(The notice to the Steamlands forum page, by the way, can be read here.)


Rhianon Jameson said...

Have you ever talked to a sassy teenager, Miss Orr? The kind who will do whatever he or she wants, regardless of your wishes/neighborhood wishes/general societal norms of good behavior?

I've gently suggested in the Forums that this might not be the world's best idea for Caledon. Others have done the same. Mr. Longstaff has apparently communicated a discomfort with certain non-Victorian pictures (or, at least, pictures that the Victorians had the good sense to glance at on the sly).

On the other hand, is it really beyond the pale? I'm told Caledon has had a brothel and an opium den, it contains a vendor who sells something called a Lotus Cock (if I'm recalling the name correctly), and a store that sells, er, naughty Victorian pictures. (And lovely pictures, I might add.) Mr. Woodget, in his advertisements for the Peacock, enjoys a good double-entendre. A "maid" school is certainly not my cup of tea, I hasten to add. But I would venture a guess that the owner of such an establishment enjoys the notoriety, so scolding is likely to be as effective as it is to the aforementioned teenager.

Emilly Orr said...

You see, notoriety is not the issue. Certainly, in Victorian and Edwardian times, there were scandals, here and abroad. Erotica in all forms was more common than most of us think--from still photos to silent films, once moving pictures caught on, to 'pillow books' of Western and Eastern practices, enjoyed by single men, but also shared by inventive couples.

Queen Victoria's Prince Albert was quite notably--and famously--pierced, with a piercing that bears his name to this day. Many women were pierced or tattooed; fetishes abounded. (Some of them beyond our current acceptable moral standards!)

And none of this is what I have a problem with. Babbage used to have an opium den, yes (and it may still). Caledon used to have a brothel, and to be honest, I hope it does again. None of this is the point.

The point is little maid Bamika has a keen and persistent desire to be punished and humiliated, and she's pushing the bounds of good taste and propriety--even with the known innuendo and 'naughty behavior' in ISC chat--day by day. She wants to be dressed down, perhaps even publicly, and she's using Caledon as a whole to do it.

I don't know about anyone else, but frankly, if I am going to be used as fantasy fodder, for someone else's blatant--and public!--sexual pleasure, I would at the least like to know.

(If she stops pushing the boundaries of appropriate behavior, I would cease to object so stridently.)

Edward Pearse, Duke of Argylle said...

Miss Jameson, Caledon has had several brothels, bordellos and houses of ill repute. I have been involved with two of them (as a business partner). None of them, nor the bookshop that sells French postcards is quite so blatant about it. Discretion or a good double-entrendre can help overcome a certain amount of crassness.

You're right. I don't care. I used to try and fight the fight but I gave up. I spend far more time in Babbage now than I ever used to. Caledon has sadly become a collection of sims with a lot of people living there because it's "cool" or whatever. Most of the people with interest in Community have left for places elsewhere. My only plot in Caledon is now my Victoria City shop. All the others have been closed down. More often than not Caledon group chat gets closed too.

As for the Prince Albert myth, I've yet to see any evidence that puts that piercing back before the 1960s.

Emilly Orr said...

Edward: Aww, seriously? That was the one thing I thought that made him cool. He was so stodgy otherwise.

But yes, you're not the only one who's lost interest in a Caledon who's lost its soul. So many folks just don't care. We used to be a commonwealth of varying concerns, united by a love for certain histories (real or imagined). Now? It's a bunch of tenants playing dress-up.

It's disheartening as hell.

Anonymous said...

Dear Miss Orr,

My problem with it is less not wanting to do anything than not knowing what to do. My initial reaction to something like that is not appropriate to type in chat or elsewhere; not if I want to keep to the refined mores of Victoriana, which is the whole point.

I remember when I got notices about the maid school and wondered what an SL maid would DO. :) It was some time before the actual purpose of the school set in to my naive little brain. Then I found it quite amusing, really, and I loved the subtlety of it. There were all manner of such things in Victorian times, of course, they simply weren't referred to in decent company - ever. I guess they were whispered about at times, and I took the notices of the past about the maid school activities as a nod and a wink and I actually thought it was rather cute. That way.

But back to the point ... how does one go about registering extreme displeasure about a breach of good taste and/or etiquette without becoming rude, oneself? It's always a dilemma and one I am not good at resolving. Correcting people is not considered good manners, though not of such blatant offence.


Suggestions welcome. I am at a loss.

Glad you're back, by the way. :)


Fuzzball Ortega said...

I've had conversations with various residents who left Caledon. Some were like Edward, giving up the fight and not caring anymore. Other's simply said that Caledon has lost it's flair.

And all that is sad. Caledon used to be an inspiration.

Just curious, has anyone actually IM'd or notecarded Desmond about this? I know there are rules against incidents like this being announced in Steelhead group chat, and I'm almost reasonably certain that Babbage has similar rules. I'm sure if enough people complain, something would be done.

Christine McAllister Pearse said...

Fuzz, as far as I know, Des has maintained a very hands off approach. He probably won't touch this with a 10 foot pole (or longer).

As I've stated before in my comments, I close ISC almost immediately upon it's opening. In all honesty, I might as well leave that group as I rarely go to Caledon anymore and can't be bothered with the group chat.

By the way Em, Miss Easterman was a possible candidate for our foray into Deadwood as my maid. I was adamant that *you* be my maid as I knew you'd be able to conduct yourself appropriately....the irony of this, knowing full well what your (and mine) former occupation was. ;-)

I really don't know what to suggest as a solution. I have nothing against people doing the whole maid/master/mistress thing, but I don't think this is being done tastefully or appropriately at all.

Darien Mason said...

I did encourage Miss Bamika to reorient her center of operations to Belhaven. That seemed to work for a month or two untile the management exploded. In fact I can still here the screaming on that island from here.

I have tried to reason with her, so many times. she simply doesn't "get it". I suspect she never will.

Rhianon Jameson said...

Miss Orr, Mr. Pearse, and possibly others opining along the same lines: the point I was trying to make was not that the blatant sexual come-ons are the equivalent to a discrete shop catering to the, ah, needs of the Victorian gentleman; rather, that they both lie on a continuum of behavior, making it difficult for Des to okay one but not the other. One can only apply moral suasion, something that (a) a number of people apparently have and (b) has had no effect. Similarly, while I find discussion of such things in ISC chat to be annoying, as Mrs. Pearse notes, many things in ISC chat are annoying. It's not clear we can restore civility without fairly heavy-handed censorship. The cure may be worse than the disease.

Let me spend a few lines defending Caledon from the claims of irrelevancy. On the one hand, I see Babbage and Steelhead as having better, more structured RP, and as having a more consistently-applied theme, than Caledon. By what appears to be design, Caledon is very much RP-lite and Steampunk-lite. On the other hand, this may be a feature, rather than a bug, as the saying goes. Caledon is bigger, and therefore can absorb more people, with divergent views about how to play. Furthermore, I've found Caledon to be, if not more welcoming, then more accommodating to new people. To take Steelhead as an example, it's a little intimidating to enter into a community where Sheriff Ortega, Dr. Mason (once upon a time :( ), Lunar and Tensai, Baron Wulfenbach, Frau Lowey, and others have a long-standing, semi-integrated story line. To the extent that Caledon has certain cliques (yes, Catgirls, I'm talking to you!), the larger size makes it easier to find one's own way.

This is not to say that people in Babbage or Steelhead are any less friendly or welcoming; quite the contrary. It's a function of the number of people involved and the looser notion of RP.

It also doesn't surprise me that some people prefer one over the other (or, perhaps, that people who started with a small-scale Caledon prefer that to what it has become). Different strokes, and all that. But it's a tad irksome to see the "Caledon has become crap" tropes trotted out at regular intervals.

Christine McAllister Pearse said...

Since when did Steelhead become branded with the RP label??? To my knowledge (and trust me on this one, I go back to Steelhead BEFORE Lunar and Tensai), Steelhead has never been an RP sim. If you want to RP, great, if not, fine. Lunar is a moon elf, but I don't think he RP's this 24/7. Fuzz has always been Fuzz. You can take the RP or leave it. I have never been involved except in the most minor way with any of the storylines that play out in Steelhead (or more accurately, people's blogs)....with the exception of the Turkey Molester incident, but again, people did not have to be involved.

As for Caledon, I suppose I am firmly in the camp of those who preferred it before it lost it's "community" feel. I think that happened when you needed a team of individuals to put up your event signs at the telehubs so you'd not be at it all night yourself. Personal preference, but it seems to have become an effigy of what it was. I'm happy lots of people are happy there, but I'm not, and so I vote with my feet.

Emilly Orr said...

And I must get back to packing, so I'd say to everyone--read on, first, and second, point by point briefly.

I don't think I've ever said Caledon has become crap. It's still one of the most unified sets of sims out there, that manages to preserve wonderful diversity in individual applications of theme, while retaining the general theme (which, for anyone who hasn't read the covenant lately, is "steampunk", not "Victorian").

I do think that Caledon residents--especially the new ones--have forgotten that Caledon is, 'light rp' or not, an immersive environment. But maybe that's just my take on it. Maybe everyone is just fine with cursing in ISC chat, with calling each other by first names, with talking about the latest miniskirt fashions on the mainland. Who knows?

I'd also add that, all things considered, I am one of the new residents of Caledon; my first home in Caledon was in one of the newest sims, Penzance; my next was in the sim just before it, I think, Morgaine. I wasn't involved in a Caledon that was five sims long, or even ten. I came in months after Tanglewoods popped.

I have no solution to the problem of inappropriate behavior in ISC chat. Sometimes notecards to Des work; usually they don't. Sometimes speaking in person to the major irritant works; I will say if the offense is flagrant enough, Miss Easterman does sit up and listen, especially when told "this could get you banned"--but that, by the by, I wouldn't use unless it actually could get her banned. (In that particular case, it could have.)

Emilly Orr said...

Oh, and a note to Miss Elspeth: things are still shaky, net-wise, we live under the shadow of having it pulled from us at any time, and I am wringing my hands every time an email floats over the RR waves asking for a host--because I should have been that host, if there wasn't such a frantic need to leave where we are.

I won't be truly *back* until the shadow of disconnection no longer looms, and that will only happen when we're settled somewhere else.

(Even if the else has to be...Utah. Ergh.)

TotalLunar Eclipse said...

"To take Steelhead as an example, it's a little intimidating to enter into a community where Sheriff Ortega, Dr. Mason (once upon a time :( ), Lunar and Tensai, Baron Wulfenbach, Frau Lowey, and others have a long-standing, semi-integrated story line."

I have a storyline?

Let's take Steelhead as an example to clear any misconceptions. My city was made as a setting to expand other's RP, I admit to being home to some very prominent RP'ers but they do not shape the city, they only live here. Steelhead is themed, we do not enforce RP or let those who do take over the city with it. It's their choice to participate in it or not. The only storyline RP we have is the city itself; the mines that were modeled after the gold rush, the buildings that were modeled after RL builds, Shanghai which was created after the asian community of the mine and railroad workers etc.

To answer the question first posed by this post, as a sim owner and a leader of a community that holds the same standards as Caledon because we modeled our structure as they, it sounds like something I would not allow. Though the way I run things and the way Desmond do are entirely different and he knows what is best for his people, and he is also nose deep in work and land deals so when does one have time anymore?

Rhianon Jameson said...

I did not mean to impugn Steelhead, Mr. Eclipse - and you've been quite clear, both here and elsewhere, that the RP is voluntary, etc. Even so, the culture seems a little more cohesive than in Caledon. Many people view that as a good thing (and, in fairness to Des, that kind of cohesiveness is possible only in a smaller arena), but it can be a tad intimidating to an outsider. Again, though, no disrespect is meant. I have always found Steelheaders and Babbagers to be warm and friendly folk.

TotalLunar Eclipse said...

Ok, I'll hold back the warm fuzzy bunnies and puppies and sunshine then.

I completely agree with you that Caledon's a huge land and having control over an area so vast and so many denizens would be daunting to me. If you said nay one to one thing there would be 20 others that would be upset over it, I walk on eggshells as it is and trying to be diplomatic sometimes doesnt blows up in your face and you're left wondering why you even bothered. If you do one thing or another there's always going to be repurcussions, someone said he may not touch it with a ten foot pole... well this may be one of those areas where you dont want to.

Fogwoman said...

Just my 2C :)
I love Caledon, for all its anarchic and sometimes bizarre little quirks. I also adore Babbage and Steelhead (and am SO excited about Shanghai). I also have known Bamika since she pretty much landed in Caledon. She actually interrupted Mr Volare and myself at a rather...inconvenient moment in our courtship in SSC. She always struck me as someone in search of an RP, and seemed to find several that appealed to her. She seems to very much like pushing boundaries, and ruffling feathers. And I agree wholeheartedly that the boundary pushing has exceeded the community standards of both the forums and ISC chat. I do not know that the solution is to pour on more attention and feed the flames. I am not sure what that solution would be, but I am sure that there will be more of the same in future - many folks are attracted to Caledon as a place to push boundaries and to play "shock the Victorians". Most leave rather disappointed ;)

Rhianon Jameson said...

"a rather...inconvenient moment in our courtship" - hmm, let's consider: two self-proclaimed geeks...must have been a deep discussion of the merits of FORTRAN versus COBOL. Or a passionate argument about whether Captain Janeway was two sigma away from the mean IQ of starship captains. :)