Monday, December 28, 2009

but may these shadows rise to walk again, with lessons truly learnt

Sense of things unraveling pulls me from my rest, and I sit a moment on the edge of the high bed, kicking my feet, as if I were much smaller, much younger, watching the leaves that aren't on the trees drift in the wind that's not there.

Why Linden Lab isn't daft. I don't entirely agree with all of her points, but on the other hand, she's dead-on accurate about one thing: we don't have the information the Labs have about why they're doing what they're doing.

Slowly I move to the kitchen, pouring cold coffee into cobalt glass, pinch of brown sugar and spice, stirred before the cream widdershins, as always. As always. And I wonder if I am good enough for those who love me.

Shauna Skye did a lovely little entry on how to be boring--or at least, her top five ways to completely bore anyone on the grid. Tip four for me, rings exceptionally strongly: partially due to my work as a host for so long, partially because you never know how interesting other people are until you ask--I have a huge problem with people talking and not even saying hello to those standing near them.

What price ignorance? What price distraction? Just an hour, just a handful of hours, just a day, just a week...soon it's a month, and more than a month, and more still, and--where is the line drawn? Is this another way of pushing against restriction?

To be completely fair, talking with my friends and saying, "Hello, X" and then not continuing the talk if they don't answer? Is completely separate to not acknowledging them at all. Or talking with their friends and insulting the avatar's shape/hair/outfit, yet still not directly communicating (which I've observed more than once).

I am loved and I love, I am held in warm arms in two worlds, and isn't that enough? That's more than most people see in one lifetime, let alone all the lives that I remember. As always, as always, it's enough and not quite enough, and I lean against the counter, butter fruited bread from the cool spaces, and contemplate time's loss once more.

The Two Year effect has been confirmed? Maybe. Map it out with the owner of Metaverse Business, and see if you agree.

That's not why I got up.

One of the best reviews of The Path comes from Shamus Young of Twenty-Sided Tale. (He also takes on the game's rape controversy (and it ranges from deep to shrill).) Personally, I don't see it as a game where six little girls get raped and murdered. I do see it as a game where six little girls potentially die, but there's only one clear-cut case of rape in the game, and frankly, it's with a seventeen-year-old who looks like a seventeen-year-old.

Why I got up is still in the darkness, but I see it now. It's down there, rising, rising, slow like honeyed poison. Still sweet on the back of the tongue but bitter to soon follow, bitter as oak gall, drifting slow, down there. It hasn't reached the subconscious ways yet, but it will. Given time. There is time. Isn't that what we always say? There is time enough...all things in time...there will be time later.

I realize that seventeen is not street-legal, either, but it's a lot closer than eleven. And for the eleven-year-old? I think honestly, truthfully, she was torn apart--in the claw-and-rend sense, not the penetrative sense--by actual wolves, not men in wolves' clothing. One of the girls could have easily been a drug allegory. One of the girls could very well have lost her mind.

Later. After. When I'm done. Just one more hour. One more day. The latest project, the latest entry, the latest game. Whatever it is that takes my attention so far away from the ones who love me.

Yes, I will agree, the girls--whatever experience they have--emerge the worst for it. And if they don't actually, physically die in any sense, they are broken afterwards. But are they all beaten and raped? No. I don't agree with that.

And in the darkness, uncoiling, rising, and that's still not why I got up.

Remember my mentioning I hadn't been approved yet for Second Life's affiliate payment program?

I sit, fingers tracing bits of lettered plastic, tapping in arcane rhythms in the dark, and wonder, once again, if I'm simply over-thinking things. That there is time, that there will be time, that there is patience, on all the sides that need to take sides, on all sides of me. I listen to the changing song singing in my ears, the low crooned hum of constancy of an evening, and try to make sense of the universal voice behind the music.

"Congratulations! has approved you into their
affiliate program!"

The triangle has four sides.

"To begin participating in the program, simply place one or more of the links below into your Web site. Make sure you visit the create links section to use our Flash banners or Flex links. These have superior image quality."

And perhaps that's why I got up, to write this out, to read it, to reassure myself that I am not lost yet, or if I am, I'm close to the place where I need to go to be found. To reassure myself, by truth or falsehood, that I am not injuring as much as I'm affecting. To tell myself that I can love, without damage, or if I can't, that my damage can always be healed, with love, with care, with time...with the other's consent, and acquiescence.

*points to shiny new link under the Amazon slideshow*

And maybe, knowing that, I can sleep again, curled up in the high bed. Wrapped in memories and tatters, listening to the breathing of people who have chosen to be in my life, thorns, and shattered shards, and all. Feeling the embrace of strong arms, protecting me, from the far distance. I am not alone. And even when I pull back, even when my attention is not fixed on any one thing but the spangled, starry mist, I am not alone.

So. Let's see how it goes from here. I am now offering folks a chance to go into Second Life, via my link for them--which will pay me a token sum (I don't expect this ever to happen, btw, I'm not ardently counting on enough clicks to pay rent even in SL, let alone the world beyond)--but if they do, they go in knowing the kind of ridiculous inanity that goes on, on the grid. If they've read the blog at all, they know I'm not a Linden apologist, and barely a Linden fan; they'll also go in with their eyes open, at least a bit, as to some of the world's hazards, as well as joys.

It's enough to sleep on, for one more night. Let the remaining nights take care of themselves. Let the darkness rising from the deeps be, for now. For now, things may be fragile, but they're fine. Things may be uneven, but they're static. The center holds.

Now remember: my prediction for how long I last on the affiliate program? Was one month. Chime in with your predictions. We'll see who comes closest.

The center holds. And I sleep.


Sphynx Soleil said...


Emilly Orr said...

*hugs you back*

Yes, artful and poetic as is my way, but yeah, haven't been sleeping well, off and on, for about two weeks now. No nightmares, no repeating dreams, just...up.

Now I think I have more of a handle on why, and maybe just the knowing will be enough to let my brain relax again.

Dio said...

"Now remember: my prediction for how long I last on the affiliate program? Was one month. Chime in with your predictions. We'll see who comes closest."

You know what Hon, I am gonna put my money on "as long as the program lasts."

I really would have thought they would have gigged you during the sign-up process if they were ever going to do it. Who knows if they even have a system in place to keep track of what affiliates are saying, unless someone complains about something?

There is also the probability that if they DO have some kind of review system set up, it involves junior marketing monkeys or some kind of interns who most likely lack the degree of fetchums required to comprehend what you're saying.

My guess is they won't even realize that you're being critical unless you put it in very short paragraphs with monosyllabic vocabulary.

Emilly Orr said...

The thing is, though...I have. And more than once. In fact, it sort of keeps coming up--and it likely will after approval to the Affiliate Program.

This much I do know--registering for Linkshare means they--and the Lindens--don't have any information I haven't already tied in to Emilly Orr to retain Adult access, and additionally, gives me the chance to surf through the other Linkshare programs, see if anything else fits on the pay-per-click basis.

Still. I expect to hear I've been bounced....yesterday, frankly. That I got approved at all is staggering.

And deeply amusing.