Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Who wants to be my little guinea piggy? :D

My friend Galene TPed me over to see her new cottage today.

Galene is the alt of an alt of an alt of a good friend, and that makes me laugh. Girl, I cannot keep track of all your damn alts, and I say that with much affection.

Galene just rented one of those cool cool cool cottages over at Sunshineacid, and if you've never heard of Sunshineacid, you should hop on over to the new SL City Zen blog and specifically check out my lovely and talented friend Krissy Muggleston's post on those cottages.

And HEY, guess what? I'm going to be writing for City Zen soon!! My beat is Dating & Sex, which is somewhat ironic since I'm not engaging in either at the moment . . . but we're gonna get to that a little later in this post. And beware -- I plan on kidnapping some of you for blog subjects.

But first, a lovely picture:


Yep, that's how pretty those cottages are. Galene is looking all serene in her pin-up girl gloriousness and I am looking like, well, a cartoon bunny.

That cartoon bunny experiment only lasted a few hours, by the way. Once my friend Ali told me where to get the Bunny AO (Egg 000 in the Bunny Hop Hunt), I put it on and it took about 10 minutes for all that hopping to give me a headache.

Plus, I'm just not the cute bunny type. Trashy unicorn, possibly; but fluffy little bunny, no.

After I checked out Galene's glorious new digs, she mentioned that she'd love to see my beach cottage sometime and I sort of panicked. At the moment, my beach house is a wee bit fugly:


Yeah, one day I just apathetically slapped down that free Turquoise Dreams bedroom set from the Vinyl Cafe and Shops Grand Reopening (that gift is gone now, but there are some great free stilettos with toes out instead), hung up a painting I like, tossed a couple of pose stands down and called it a day.

That pose my bunny is striking is called Kung Fu on Your Ass from Pffiou! Poses without Cramps' awesome new Bunnyfight poses set (100L). The whole set is so cool and the names alone make me laugh so hard! I'm an idiot because I meant to include them in my Gangsta Bunny post yesterday.

Here's what a human AV looks like striking that pose:


Uh, I'm not really the ideal pose model.

This pose is called Trusty Sidekick:


Ha ha! I am so damn delighted right now. That is awesome.

So as I mentioned, I'm going to be writing about Dating & Sex over at City Zen and I think I'm going to profile a bachelor or a bachelorette each week. I know it's been done before, but not Emerald-style.

What I'd really like to do is spend some quality time cruising around the grid with my victim, checking out his/her favorite places, home or whatever the brave soul feels like showing me. Meanwhile I'll bombard my subject with silly questions, attempt to take a decent photo (oh God, help us all) and then further attempt to write an amusing yet enticing write-up and get some of you single people HOOKED UP!

Occasionally I might profile couples and get their fun stories, lessons learned, secrets to success, etc.

I don't know. I'm kind of still working this all out in my head. I imagine that, like everything, it'll get off to a rocky start . . . but then evolve into pure awesomeness.

So holla if you want to be one of my bachelor/bachelorettes of the week. I need volunteers to kick this off. **looks pointedly at Laleeta, Quaintly and Galene**

I've never been part of a group blog before, and some of the writers over there are really talented. As such, I really need to get over my current SL identity crisis, put a look together and get a headshot taken (or take my own). Anyone who reads this blog is used to my frequent fashion experiments, but I think I need some kind of persona if I'm going to be a blogging matchmaker on someone else's blog.

Look way up there at this blog header, or hit the Flickr gadget on the right (I forgot that login/password!!!) or go waaaaaaaaay back to my early posts and you'll see that I used to be "kinda-quirky Emerald." I liked that version. But somehow I evolved into "trying too hard to be sexy/cool" Emerald and it's not really working for me. 

I want to ultimately get my AV to reflect who I am in RL, actually, which is just a fun, funny, goofy gal who, in the right lighting and on good hair days, is cute or possibly even pretty, depending on how many drinks you've had.

Today I spent an hour trying on hair alone.


Blonde bitch who will slice you with her pointy chin? No.


And, um, another fail. This is not a picture of someone you'd share your romantic dreams and aspirations with. This is an empty-eyed ice queen.

(I think I got that hair free at ROGE Hair recently. I know I didn't buy it because a hair flower isn't usually my style.)


My skin is, as always, from [the oBscene], but I may need a friendlier skin for this assignment. And slightly less cleavage.

Speaking of, [the oBscene] postponed the grand opening of their new main store today (check out the post here), which made me sad. No definite date yet.

I'll close this post with my current SL location. I call it hell right now, but it's actually called Perfect Prefabs. It has brought my Bunny Hop Hunt to a screeching halt. There's a hint at the TP point: "The egg is in a grotto!" Oh, you mean one of the 90 grottos there? 

*sad face*


I'm just going to admit it at this point: I NEED A CHEAT SHEET! When I get this desperate, I usually swing by the D-List Headquarters (now on the new Harold sim) and click on Ding's oh-so-awesome Hunt Update Box, which will usually give you every "help sheet" for whatever hunt ails you. 

But at the moment she only has a list of Bunny Hop location SLurls, not the prize locations. Still helpful if you get stuck though. I'm about to give up on Perfect Prefabs and hop to the next location. I can't even find this egg with my trusty Treasure Hunt Radar.

And now I have to go walk my geriatric dog, bless his heart. *insert the reemerging Southern accent here*

Have a great night!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Damn, it feels good to be a gangsta

If you've been trying to IM me in world lately, most likely you've gotten that annoying "This person is too damn busy to talk to you" message.

Yeah, I've had my World set to Busy lately. Not talkative these days. I dwell in blissful silence.

Plus, I just want to finish this motha-jumpin' Bunny Hop hunt and get on with my life.

I'm about to become an editor-at-large for a RL bridal magazine -- **cough, hack** (sorry) -- and meanwhile in this parallel universe, I recently was kind of shocked to discover how many wedding dresses I happen to have in my SL inventory. 

They're all wedding dresses I've won in lucky chairs or snagged as freebs or dollarbies (I hate that word), along with one Last Call gown I won at a charity auction last year.

So this post originally was going to be a showcase of all my SL wedding gowns.

I got about a third of the way through it and screamed, "MY GOD, THIS IS BORING AS HELL!"

So I killed that draft and spared you the agony.

**blows the smoke off the blog-killing pistol**

We'll go this route instead (still probably boring as hell though):

Today my RL little brother -- who actually is not "little" but almost 30 -- dropped by after he got off work and busted me "playing Second Life."

I use the term "busted" because I come from a family with a really solid work ethic, meaning if you have time to sit on your derriere in a virtual world, then you have time to, I don't know, wax the floor, paint the house and give the dog a bath. So whenever I log on these days, it's kind of a guilt trip.

But blessedly my youngest brother gets it, so he merely looked over my shoulder and said, "Why does your AV look like such a hooker?"


HEY -- it's just stuff I threw on for hunting. I wasn't TRYING to look like a hooker. But in retrospect, damn, I guess I did look a little bit loose.

That Big Damn Hair is called WhiteLies*Faith Midnyte Hair in Pink Hot (hey, I just type it like I see it) from a freebie fat pack from Panache.

The corset is part of the Eve in Blush outfit from Elate, which I snagged from a Lucky Chair during the Bunny Hop hunt. (Double win!)

I bought those groovy *QU*3 Hippy Pants for something like $77L (maybe?) at one of my FAVORITE STORES, Yome Shoujo, when I went there to snag that Bunny Hop egg as well. (They also come with a "no flower" option.)

Skin is from [the oBscene], jewelry is from all over the damn place, and those are Stiletto Moody Glam Booties in Nude.

That pose is a freebie (or $1L, I forget) from KiiToS!! called "Shoes and Nails," but I like to call it "Go ahead! Smell my armpit!"

I'm not particularly proud of that look, but I thought I'd throw all that info out there in case you too wanna look like a cotton-candy hooker! 

(Add a cute little jacket and some different hair and it really wouldn't be so bad, actually.)

You can't see it very well, but I'm also wearing a butterfly tattoo on my face from [fairy tale]. I bought that during the Bunny Hop Hunt too. Unlike some hunters, I DO try to check out the wares in the stores that are so generously giving me a migraine with their carefully hidden eggs. These face tattoos are in a little $20L-a-pop gumball machine at the back of the store. There are different styles, but I wanted the butterfly. Thank God I got it on the second try or it could've turned out to be an expensive whim.

My little bro's hooker comment was appropriate in one sense though -- that I'm tired of the HOT MESS that currently is my Second Life. I'm tired of petty assholes, and they seem to be everywhere these days. I'm tired of clothes, frankly, and the constant quest to look like a sexy bitch or whatever it is some of us are trying to accomplish here. I'm tired of my ugly furniture. (Must redecorate!) I'm just . . . tired of all of it.

**somebody play a violin righ'chere!**

And at the moment I'm tired of girls. Or women who act like girls, for that matter.

I don't wanna be a girl anymore. And I'm tired of being the queen of the universe, too. **drop-kicks crown across the room**

I feel an extended vacation coming on.

In the meantime, even though I'm not one of those "bunny people," I think I just want to be this Elegant Rabbit from Curious Kitties for a while.



(I kind of want to get GANGSTA and give her a machine gun or something, though. I'm not used to being so . . . cuddly.)

That AV costs $100L and is yet another item I bought during the Bunny Hop hunt. (Yep, I usually end up going broke on hunts, if that makes you participating store owners feel better.)

Hey, did I hear that there's a Bunny AO somewhere on this Bunny Hop Hunt? If so and you know about it, tell me where please! I need one!


Now that I've returned home to the land of trees and grass and fantastic barbecue and Graceland and, most importantly, people I love, I'm slowly transitioning back to real life. Hanging out with my two-year-old niece is like getting a shot of Vitamin B. 

And I'm not bragging, but I made $4K today before the antique grandfather clock even struck noon (RAWWWWWK!), so I'm also back in the realm of actively participating in and contributing to society (if you can call it that) . . . oh, and a little something called paying bills on time. Sweet, sweet relief.

My mom also is shoving her Southern home-cooking down my face faster than I can eat it, so I'm finally getting my badonka-donk-donk back, and the mosquito bites are finally starting to look like boobs again.


That's kind of a long stupid way of saying that you'll probably find me as my real self on Facebook in the coming weeks more often than you'll find me on Second Life (I hope), so if you want to -- SHOCKER -- connect over there as real people, shoot me an e-mail or a message in world and maybe we can "make friends." [I just have to get my Facebook page back up.]

And now I must get back to being a bad-ass Elegant Bunny. I still have about 150 more eggs to go. :\

**wiggles an ear and hops off**

Saturday, March 28, 2009

The Devil Wears Rainbows

A friend and I had a heart-to-heart conversation this morning and she confirmed my concern that I may be coming across as a bit of a boozer.

OH LAWDY people, NO!

I come from a big Irish family. And yes, they are drinkers. Actually, they talk about adult beverages constantly, as in "Somebody fix me a drink," "Would you like to start your morning with a nutritious Bloody Mary?" "Who took the jigger?" "Where's the jigger?' "Has anyone seen the jigger?" "Who the hell bought Gordon's instead of Booth's?" "Hey, Piggly Wiggly is having a sale on Miller Light today! Go go go!"

As for me, I didn't inherit my family's robust body types or their alcohol tolerance levels. I'm kind of an elfin waif, or so I've been told. One strong drink will put me under the table (or, um, face down on my keyboard, typing offensive things with my lips). Two will have me curled in a fetal position with a wretched headache the next day.

So no, I'm not usually drinking mass quantities of booze, particularly when I'm on SL. But yes, I do think it's funny to joke about it. Humor is the only way I can deal with the 24/7 sloshfest in my house at this point. I've tried everything else.

However, I now see that the humor isn't translating. Or at least to some people.

(God, if anything, this past week has really killed my stand-up comedy aspirations.)

So I'm not joking about booze anymore.

For instance, if someone says to me:

"I'm concerned that you're drunk when you're in Second Life."

I WILL NOT respond with:

"And actually I'm concerned that you're NOT drunk when you're in Second Life."


I make no apologies for my Xanax references though.

Oh DAMN! I just did it again. A JOKE! Sure I'd love some! In buckets! But I think I have about 10 to my name. And I'm saving those for emergencies.

And you know what? I'm officially done explaining myself to people. If you don't like me, either get the hell off this blog or go ahead and read it so you can snark about it with your friends on Plurk. I honestly don't care. I'm glad to be of service either way.


Like a lot of people, I'm amused by the unicorn thing that's going on over at Starlust. That is damn witty and entertaining. BRAVO to whoever thought of it. Next, can we please have Unicorns vs. Bunnehs?

(**runs like hell now from you bunny people**)

I'm pro-unicorn, by the way. Not so sure how I feel about unicorn sex though -- it violates my childhood memories! -- but I guess they have to procreate somehow.

If you hop your little bunny tail over to the lobby of the Starlust Motel, you'll find a plethora of unicorn-related gifts. (Join the Starlust group and you'll get EVEN MORE!)

One of my favorites, and hell yes I'm biased, is my friend Aisuru Rieko's Make Me a Pretty Pretty Unicorn set, available in the aforementioned lobby as well as in her Beloved Custom Designs store at Floyd.

(Pose: La Croupe from the Inspiration poses set at Pffiou! Poses without Cramps.)

We're coming to get you, Nekos!!!

The $75L set includes two horns (one with bling, one without), ears, and a tail with a click-to-change-color gem on its pretty bow.

I really love this set because it takes me back to my youth, when my biggest worry was coercing my mom to drive me to the mall so I could get the latest Lisa Frank stickers. When I was a kid, if you didn't have AT LEAST four pages of Lisa Frank stickers in your sticker album, you might as well have been wearing a big scarlet L for Loser on your ripped Flashdance-style neon sweatshirt.

Speaking of Lisa Frank, when I moved to Tucson four years ago, I was all squealy and delighted to discover that Lisa Frank's headquarters were located there. My friend and I drove over to check it out. 

Her corporate office is -- surprise -- housed in a huge rainbow-colored building. We pressed our faces against the bars of her security fence like kids trying to catch a glimpse of Willie Wonka's Chocolate Factory. We gaped at the giant unicorn statue in her courtyard. We squinted at another huge sparkly sculpture in her lobby.

Then a security guard escorted us off the property.

Later when I was filling some open positions on my Tucson staff, I interviewed quite a few Lisa Frank refugees. And wow, the stories they told! Obviously they didn't know the cardinal rule of job interviewing -- don't bash your former boss in a new job interview -- but hell, my jaw was dropped open at that point so I didn't care. JUICY STUFF!

According to the scorned former employees, Lisa Frank is the Anna Wintour of the sticker empire and goes through personal assistants like cheap rolls of toilet paper. Or at least that's what they all said. But then again, they were all women she had fired. So they could have been a tad bitter and, as such, exaggerating.

(**Emerald covers her ass here so she doesn't get sued for libel.**)

For all I know, she may be a lovely women. But now when I see her cheery, acid-trip unicorns, I can't help but imagine that when she's drawing those sparkly horns, she's really thinking of lethal weapons.

I gots no segue for this next section:


It's the new Anabell ($195L) at Apple May Designs.

(Pose: La Coquine from the Goofy Me pose set at Pffiou!)

My photo doesn't do it justice, but the textures are delicious, and it comes with a variety of skirt options, as well as an optional shoulder sash, which I can't seem to mod to fit my shape -- GAH!

Since I'm not a model, here's AMD's display pic:


Cute, simple, pretty, with two skirts to chose from (flexi or torn, which I'm wearing), and a sculpted shoulder sash. Just this once, I paired mine with the Lilac Tirkis stockings from the Color Mix 9 stockings at ALB Dream Fashions and -- I don't care if they're so yesterday -- some color-change ballet boots from Dilly Dolls. 

Hey, it's hard to match accessories with my unicorn parts without looking like a hot rainbow mess.

That's all I got today.

Love and laughs,

P.S. Go unicorns!!!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Mea culpa

I have this opinion -- and feel free to disagree with it or add to it -- that a really good blog falls into one or more of four categories: 

1) provides its readers with plenty of useful information; 
2) is wildly entertaining; 
3) is just flat-out damn good writing, even if it's just reciting the alphabet; or
4) occasionally gets a nice heated debate going . . . or at least a mild discussion. 

Based on No. 4 alone, if I write a post and it makes people angry, I'll usually keep the post up, slammin' comments and all. I don't attack people who comment and disagree with my opinions. I don't even respond with anger to the hate mail that I occasionally get. 

(For the record, I get plenty of love mail too. It is Love Thursday, after all! And I love you people who drop me those wonderful notes. They make my day. Thank you!)

But last night I wrote a blog post that deeply offended someone I care about and caused possible irreparable damage to our friendship (ouchy, I've never been muted before. I thought people only did that to griefers or losers with annoying gestures. **winces**), so I deleted that crazy, tipsy post I wrote last night. It was toxic, according to my friend. Or maybe she called me toxic. I guess I agree with either context right now.

(Yep, you gotta check this blog during the wee hours of the morning if you want to catch the crazy in action.)

When my former friend told me she was cutting me from her life, she listed a couple of reasons. Because she made some valid points, I'd like to clarify a couple of things for my readers.

-- Last night I said my life was an open book. I listed several open-book moments. It wasn't really intended to be a pity party and if it's sounding that way, I need to work on the tone.

Here's the thing. In spite of it all, there has never been one dark incident or time in my life from which I haven't managed to emerge shining on the other side, as a stronger and better person. 

This, right here, right now, is another bad time, but I have no doubt that I'll eventually rise from these ashes as well.

As a writer, my attitude is this: If my readers follow me through the blackness alllll the way to the other side -- the bright one, the one with the greener pastures -- maybe they can take something from that story and apply it to their own dark journeys, should they ever have to walk those roads. Or at least get some hope that, yes, this too shall pass. Trust me, it always does.

I try to handle the blackness with equally black humor. But apparently I'm failing at it these days. So I'll try to keep the "wow, look at the trainwreck of my life!" moments to a minimum from now on. They don't belong in an SL blog anyway, but then again, maybe they do. How can you know my SL self if you don't know the real person behind her? It's always something I ponder. Unlike other people, I can't separate the two.

-- Last night I also expressed my belief that many people who spend marathon hours in world are either unbelievably bored or unbelievably damaged. That flippant comment came from tunnel vision and a lack of perspective on my part (not to mention gin).

I mentioned that I fall in the latter category. If I felt better about myself in real life, believe me, I'd be out there soaking up every minute of it. Life is short. Do we really want to spend it at a computer screen? I don't. But I am. And I like it in SL. It's a guilty pleasure, with the emphasis on guilt. So that comment came from a yucky place of conflicting emotions -- guilt, shame, regret, self-loathing . . . every shrink's wildest dreams come true.

But HEY, at least I admit that I have a problem. Take that, Step One!

I apologize for generalizing. Most of my friends are in world often, so CONGRATULATIONS, EMERALD, you just insulted them all in ONE SWOOP!! Many people have businesses in SL. And many of you have your own stories and reasons as to why you spend significant amounts of time there. Instead of making a broad and insulting comment, I should have asked this open-ended question:

Why do you spend time in Second Life and how has this time enriched your life?

And if you're hiding out like me, licking emotional wounds and leaning on SL friends who help you grow stronger by the day, maybe we all need to update each other with progress reports on how our trips back to the other side of the border are going.

So that's my mea culpa. I lost a friend because of my blog post last night and hell yeah, I shed tears over it today. But I accept the consequences of my actions and my thoughtless words, and I'll just close this topic with this sage advice:

Don't Drink and Blog!

P.S. To my new friend Selkie, I will do your RAWKIN' meditation cushion (below) justice in a future post. It's Love Thursday! And I love it. I'm so glad I stopped by your store.


Tuesday, March 24, 2009

I flew a kite and ended up bawling

Sometimes I write blog posts late at night and wake up the next morning filled with blogger's remorse.

Take yesterday's post, for instance. 

I should have asked my friend first if I could post that pic of a product she was working on. But I got caught up in the joy of funny friends in my photo album and didn't. So I, um, adjusted that pic today. And if she wants me to, I'll remove it completely. For the record, I feel really bad about doing that. Sometimes I don't think.

I also reread that blog post this morning with a bit of disgust at the "Hey, look how purty I am!" tone. 

I don't know what's happened to this blog. It used to be funny and fun and full of . . . escapades. Now it's turning into a "Look what I got and look what I bought and lookit my hair and lookie, I got a new skin and, hey, check out my fish tank" kind of thing.

Hell, it's even boring ME to tears these days.

OK. Let's move on from that navel-gazing, self-flagellating moment.

The good news is, I got asked to write for a new SL blog that I think has the potential to be big and exciting and includes a panel of really talented writers. I'm honored. And I think you'll like it. Or at least I hope you will. I'm looking forward to getting rolling on it. So stay tuned.

And in other news, I wanted to alert you to an interesting and -- although I know it wasn't intended to be -- somewhat morbid place I found during the gridwide Go Fly a Kite Hunt (runs through April 19).

Kite No. 247 is located at Remembering Our Friends, which includes shops, apartments (including apartments for people with physical disabilities) and the Remembering Our Friends Memorial.

The Remembering Our Friends Memorial stopped me in my tracks. It has walls and walls of plaques that look like this:


Close-up shot:


You can donate oil to light the candles by these plaques. Some of them give notecards with further information about the person. Some of these plaques simply remember people who canceled their Second Life accounts. But many of these plaques are for people who were active in Second Life and passed away in real life. I got caught up in reading them, and before I knew it I was crying.

If anyone has any doubt about the impact we make on others' lives in Second Life (even though we all happen to be in mere pixel form), a visit to the Remembering Our Friends Memorial is a poignant reminder of the fact that love knows no boundaries, virtual or geographic. 

I looked around for a notecard or something that explained why the memorial was started, how often plaques are added, how to add a plaque, etc., but found nothing.

Here's the description on the landmark though:

"[A] Memorial to remember SL players that have passed away in real life or in SL. IM Mike Burleigh for a plaque to remember those that have passed. Thank you for remembering our friends. We also have storefront and handicapped apts for rent."

Another landmark to the shops said the same thing, except the word "free" was in front of the word "plaque," so I'm not sure if these memorial plaques really are free or now cost something.

A motivated blogger would have IMed Mike Burleigh for the answers to all these questions, but I'm crunched for time. As some of you know, in RL I'm temporarily living with my parents while I look for a job, and if I spend too much time in my room my mom pounds on the door with, "WHAT'RE YOU DOING IN THERE??? ARE YOU PLAYING VIDEO GAMES?"

Good times. I guess they still think I'm 14.


If you're wondering, here's Remembering Our Friends' gift in the Go Fly a Kite Hunt:


(Good blogger! *pats myself on head*)

This giant marble fireplace has 12 prims and, as you can see, takes up my whole house. Maybe I'll put it in my front yard.

If you're having a hard time finding the kite, it's in the memorial chapel, alllllll the way up at the top of the high glass ceiling in the center.

OOOOOOH! I just gave you the EXACT location of a hunt prize for the SECOND DAY IN A ROW! (See previous post for two Malt hunt item locations.)

I guess I'll wrap up this post now feeling like the rebel bad-ass I secretly aspire to be.

Make some noise, have some fun and stir up a little trouble yourself today.

Monday, March 23, 2009

What girls do when we're bored

I know that a lot of you men often ponder the mysteries of women, particularly how our minds work and what the hell we do when we get together in groups. 

You know, our lingerie pillow fights, the nurturing girl-on-girl back rubs, the hot tub skinny dips, all that stuff.

Yep, all your fantasies are pretty much true. (*cough*)

For instance, one minute we might be taking a picture of something that may or may not be a prize in something that may or may not be an upcoming gridwide hunt (insert undertones of mystery and suspense here):


. . . and then suddenly we're all yanking Playboy bunny outfits out of our inventories (wow, and why did we all happen to own one??) and piling on top of each other:


Hey look everyone -- I have beautiful friends.

Damn, I wish someone would have told me that my neck was so fat that it was eating my collar.


Yeah, if you look up at that first pic, you can see that I sported a rather manly look during the RFL clothes fair. It was my small contribution to the Fight Against Lag. 

Even though I FREAKIN' HATE ANYTHING THAT HAS TO DO WITH PIRATES, I accidentally spent a bloody fortune at that fair, as in about $40 RL bucks. So TAKE THAT, cancer! And you too, Visa card!

I wasn't planning on spending much, but I didn't know that my favorite jewelry designer Random Calliope had a booth there until it was right in front of my face. As such, I went a little CRAAAAZAY. I also got kimono fever again. I love Japanese designers. But have you ever seen me running around in a kimono? No. Little did you know that I have a PLETHORA of kimonos in my inventory. Until now.

A good blogger would pause here and show you my new $3,000L Random Calliope RFL set (or even tell you the name of it) and possibly some RFL kimonos . . . but, um, I think I'm number 999 (if that) on ArminasX's list of top SL blogs, so I'm excusing myself from too much effort right now. (THANK YOU, ArminasX, for that much-needed ego deflation, not to mention about 97 seconds of depression.)

OK. This will probably shock you, but I'm just gonna run through some uncharacteristically random stuff right now:

1. A Blast from My Past

I finally finished the bleepin' gridwide Go Fly a Kite Hunt, and I'm only "bleepin' " it because after about store No. 212, I started feeling a little insane. And now I have 277 prizes to examine and sort. 

"Wah wah wah -- I got free stuff and it was hard to find and it took a long time and now I have to unpack gift boxes and try it all on -- wah wah wah."

Sorry. What an ungrateful a-hole I am.

But how fun it was to get reunited with the store NY Couture during that hunt! NY Couture was the Very First Store where I shopped all by myself as a frightened noob. And because I was a noob and thought wings were the bomb back then, the first thing I ever bought was this Alba Rossini Fairy Rose Explosion outfit:


Uh yeah, it's a little . . . out there. But as embarrassing as it is, I just had to shoot this pic for old times' sake. And look at me with my low-lag, slicked-back "Robert Palmer girl" hair (Google it, kids). That hair (including an attachable chignon) comes with the YourSkin & YourShape group gift -- including the beautiful Monique skin-- from 3/14. It's still in notices. Join and get it!

NY Couture brought back fond memories because when I was a newbie I didn't know we were supposed to "open" things. So I ran into that store, bought that outfit, rezzed the display it was packaged in, and screamed to myself, "OH NO! I didn't buy a dress! I bought a PAINTING of a dress!"

Eventually I figured it out.

2. Hey, Lookit My Feesh Tank!

Remember a couple of months ago when lotsa bloggers were raving about that pink Breeze hair group gift from Lamb? Well, I finally tried on mine during that Playboy bunny shoot up thayre and I now understand why people wouldn't shut up about that hair for a week. SEXY! And since I was sick of looking like a man, I ran to Lamb yesterday and bought a ton of colors.

And GUESS WHAT?! I also found a five-prim wall fish tank with bubbly sounds for a mere $170L at C'est Ca Furniture during the Go Fly a Kite hunt.

So my studio-quality fish tank beauty shots are BACK, baby!!


I know you missed them terribly.

That's Breeze in Rotten Carrot (nice name!) from the reds pack. That gauzy top actually is from a really beautiful new gown called Naomi Noir from Serene Sensations by Soraya. I'm sure designer Serene Blanchere didn't intend for me to ho it all up by pairing it with those Drawmachine jeans, but whatever. Oops.

I feel guilty, so here's what Naomi Noir, released yesterday, is supposed to look like:

(Photo courtesy of the Naomi Noir notice in FashCon.)

3. Keep It Simple, Stupid

Life is funny sometimes. For example, I spend massive amounts of time searching for spectacular clothes, not to mention the time I devote to finding shoes, hair, accessories and a skin to suit my mood each day I'm in world. Hell, sometimes it can take me almost an hour to get dressed in SL.

Hey, what do you want from me? I'm a girl.

But today I had errands to run so I just quickly threw on some finds from the current hunt at the new Malt sim, some freebie hair, some freebie jewelry and a $1L skin.

I stopped by THAT DAMN LUCKY CHAIR at Jeckilicious because I'm still trying to win one of those DAMN LEATHER JACKETS. While I waited (still unsuccessfully), a fellow chair stalker (and stranger) said to me, "Wow, you have a really stylish AV, if you don't mind my saying. And it looks effortless, like you didn't even have to try."

Best compliment ever! And how funny that I DIDN'T even try.


Sorry -- not a great pic, but I was eating those cupcakes at the time.

Hair: Susan I in Coffee, SoM gift from the upcoming Pacadi, formerly Maeva (hit the Subscribo HERE)
Tank: from the Malt Hunt, part of the outfit in Prize 5
Jeans and Bangles: from Malt Hunt, part of the outfit in Prize 3
Skin: Phoebe 002 in Light from Lazolli ($1L)
Necklace: Shine Blue Flora, grand opening gift from Shine at the new Covet sim
Posing Stool: Gift from Diesel Works. Join the update group; put the store in your Picks; and return in about 24 hours to click the sign and receive this stool with four poses in it. The update group costs $25L to join. The stool alone is worth it.


Oh and . . . 

Shoe(s): Venus Sandals in Sand (300L) from The HUB
Pose: High Voltage from the new En Pointe pose set (100L) at Pffiou: Poses without Cramps

And now it's time for me to scoot. Have an effortlessly fabulous day.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

<-- Idiot


I wrote that post about my rezzzzzzzzz day a couple of posts back and just figured out today that my rez day actually was yesterday.

(Read that sentence a few times and I promise it'll make sense.)


(Kidding -- I did nothing on both the wrong day and the right day. Insert violins playing here. Even my loyal friend Fuzzy the Bunny stayed holed up in my inventory.)

I have no photos in this post, thus breaking one of New World Notes' Hamlet Au's rules on how to write a great blog post. I'm also too lazy to link to NWN or that particular post right now, which probably breaks another rule. I believe he also advised to keep blog posts short and snappy and hell, I blew that one from Day One. And actually, maybe someone else wrote that post, not Hamlet.

Whatever. Sorry, Hamlet!

However, New World Notes is in my really long blog roll over there. --->

If you're not reading it occasionally or often, you should be.

ANYHOO . . . 

I really just wanted to wish everyone a HAPPY ST. PATRICK'S DAY!!!!

I believe it's my duty to officially bestow these good tidings on all of you, as my AV and my RL self are named after the Emerald Isle.

In RL, by the way, my family has been drinking since yesterday. My father has Irish music blaring (on "repeat") on the stereo downstairs and it's actually driving me quite insane. They have a chain of Irish pubs lined up, which we are about to start hitting in a disturbingly planned methodological order -- as in, the itinerary was created about TWO WEEKS AGO -- and I'm pretty sure we're all going to end up in jail or at least in a bar fight by the end of the day.

So, um, nice knowing all of you. Keep your Irish eyes smiling today!

This glimpse of my extremely dysfunctional RL family and idiot SL self brought to you by the letter E.

Monday, March 16, 2009

HELP! I need Damage control!



Never mind.

Contrary to the promise I made to myself JUST YESTERDAY, today I'm killing time on the Go Fly a Kite hunt. OK. Not "killing time." More like "procrastinating." I wish it were a sport in the Olympics. I would make the USA proud.

I've been stuck on Kite No. 89 at Damage for a long damn time. I couldn't even find it with my scandalous Treasure Hunt Radar HUD (buy it HERE, on the shelves on the back wall for $99L). I was screaming for help in this blog because I couldn't find help anywhere else . . . but lo and behold I just found it! It's underwater outside the store, for those of you who get stuck in the future.

That aside, I also discovered that if you're looking for the Quad Penetrator at Damage, it's right next to the Cool Shades:



Also, for the love of God, DO NOT accidentally bump into the fountain at Damage:

[9:53] Luck whispers: Whoops! Emerald bumps into the fountain and has an overwhelming desire to toss a coin in it for good luck and maybe some free stuff... Maybe go have a coffee and let things rez before going further... ;)
[9:53] Luck whispers: Whoops! Emerald bumps into the fountain and has an overwhelming desire to toss a coin in it for good luck and maybe some free stuff... Maybe go have a coffee and let things rez before going further... ;)
[9:53] Luck whispers: Whoops! Emerald bumps into the fountain and has an overwhelming desire to toss a coin in it for good luck and maybe some free stuff... Maybe go have a coffee and let things rez before going further... ;)
[9:53] Luck whispers: Whoops! Emerald bumps into the fountain and has an overwhelming desire to toss a coin in it for good luck and maybe some free stuff... Maybe go have a coffee and let things rez before going further... ;)
[9:53] Luck whispers: Whoops! Emerald bumps into the fountain and has an overwhelming desire to toss a coin in it for good luck and maybe some free stuff... Maybe go have a coffee and let things rez before going further... ;)
[9:53] Luck whispers: Whoops! Emerald bumps into the fountain and has an overwhelming desire to toss a coin in it for good luck and maybe some free stuff... Maybe go have a coffee and let things rez before going further... ;)
[9:53] Luck whispers: Whoops! Emerald bumps into the fountain and has an overwhelming desire to toss a coin in it for good luck and maybe some free stuff... Maybe go have a coffee and let things rez before going further... ;)
[9:53] Luck: Emerald tosses a coin into the fountain and feels a wonderful sensation of well being. (Not to mention feeling very lucky.)
[9:53] Luck: Thanks, Emerald! Just for being so generous, here's some free stuff.

Dude, OKAAAAAAAAAY! I get it! I bumped into your fountain!!!!

Note that I got desperate at the end and "tossed it a coin" ($10L) just to get it to SHUT UP. The free stuff I got included male and female shirts and a lucky horseshoe that I'm supposed to give to a friend at the end of the day. 

So holla if you need some luck.

Hey, I discovered a store that I really love during this hunt.

Smooth Designs has some interesting, cool and beautiful stuff that unfortunately I can't afford:


Bird of Paradise dress (comes in other colors), $550L, and yep, you're right, where the hell would I wear it? Who cares!


Snow Queen II, $850L. I don't care if it's out of season. And my head at the bottom is not included with the outfit.


Cloud Nine in Gold, $450L. Ooooooh! It's PRETTY!!!

And YES, I really do want to run around for a day or two as this Sparkly Rainbow AV, $650L:

(But it kind of looks like she has a dong?)

Actually, I like the Rave Light AV ($650L) better. I couldn't get the mannequin to stand still, so here's another bad picture of another store display:


If I were a decent blogger, this would be the part where I unpack the Smooth Designs hunt gift and put it on or at least tell you what it is  . . . but I have to run to Taco Bell now. Plus, don't you want it to be a HYUUUGE surprise??

I'll end this pointless post on an altruistic and educational note. Unless you've been living under a prim rock, you know that the Relay for Life SL Clothing Fair kicks off today. I haven't gone yet because I'm skeered of the lag and we have through March 22 to check it out. 

And I'm also a little confused . . . are we supposed to dress like pirates or something?? If so, I'll probably be a bald one. Actually the Vain group gave out a free sparkly red low-lag AV today to wear to the fair -- check notices if you missed it.

The fair benefits the American Cancer Society and THIS POST on the fair's official site gives you the SLurls to all eight sims of fair shops. (WOOOO!)

You can also find schedules for the fashion shows on that site. Oh, and there's a treasure hunt there too. Info is on the Web site.

And now, I really need a taco. And some nachos. And a bean burrito. 


Sunday, March 15, 2009

Hangin' with Elvis on my Rez Day!

Hey y'all, I finally made it to Memphis -- and it's my Rez Day!

It's fun to be back in Memphis, home of Elvis Presley, soul-soothing Blues music and great BBQ.

And to be honest, I haven't given much thought to my Rez Day except to continue to wonder whether "rez" is spelled "rez" or "rezz." Or is it all spelled "rezday"? Or "rezzday"?

These questions keep me up at night.

I originally set out to write an epic post about everything I've learned in Second Life, but I started boring the hell out of myself so I stopped. 

I do wish we could send friend requests to semi-strangers in real life though. And fly. That'd be fun.

Then I wanted to write a blog post thanking Second Life for officially inducing a nauseous Pavlovian response to shamrocks by once again completely over-killing a holiday for me, but I decided that would sound bitchy, so I'm not gonna do that either.

HOWEVER, if you're a girl or a cross-dressing guy and you want just one fabulous outfit for my most favorite holiday of the year, I suggest you get yourself over to Moxie Polano's Haute Couture store and grab this Clover Dress:


(Stockings included.)

Oooooh! The shading!!!!

That's Bob from Bob's Big Boy restaurant behind me, by the way, the site of my first job as a teenager, back when I had a work ethic.

That pose is from the Oh Baby! pose set from Pffiou! Poses without Cramps. It's the closest thing I could find to an Elvis pose, but somehow I've managed to transform it into a "Look, I finally shaved my armpits!" pose. 

Ha haaaaa! -- I know my friend and Pffiou! pose creator Laleeta won't mind that joke because she has an awesome sense of humor.

Um, right Laleeta?

I wish I had a real-life pose without cramps right now.

Anyhoo, check the detailing on the back of this dress:



That dress is in Moxie's Lucky Chair at the moment, but do something nice for the economy and just BUY IT for a beyond-believable affordable $150L at the store.

I'm posing at the Elvis Presley Rock and Roll Shop in these pics since there's no SL version of Graceland. Or if there is, I can't find it. I'm going to Graceland in RL next weekend. I've already been there about nine times, but WTH, I might as well make it an even 10.

Hey, I'm not usually a huge fan of free skins because they look, well, free, but click your "I keep this slot open for free sh*t" groups button, join the YourSkin & YourShape group, get this "MoniqueRel_Night" (hey, I just type it like I see it) group gift skin, then leave the group and RUN like the sneaky freebie junkie you secretly are.


Wow, that was a shocking thing to type, but you know you do it. YOU KNOW YOU DO!

(Sorry, I'm giddy on a fake rez-day cake sugar high.)

My regular readers know that I consider myself a connoisseur of cleavage shading, and I give those boobs two thumbs up, along with the face. The nose is a little pinched, but that's probably the fault of my lack of slider skills.

The necklace I'm wearing is Prims & Pearls' Celtic Knot Necklace from the Greatest Love St. Patrick's Day Hunt (it's all HERE), and I'm not going to be an ungrateful bitch and tell you that I threw everything from that hunt away except for about four gifts.

Nope, I'm not.

But maybe we all need to explore Step One and admit that we are powerless over our addiction to having and participating in hunts this year?

Speaking of YET ANOTHER GRIDWIDE HUNT, I think I'm supposed to Go Fly a Kite sometime today through April 19 .

You know what?



(Twenty bucks says I will though.)

Hey, someone sent me a note asking why I never put SLurls in my blogs, so, ummmm, let me just clarify that if you see a word in dark blue, well, that's a link to a SLurl. Or a Web site that will tell you something useful. 

But DO feel free to slam me if I scroooo up a SLurl though. I agree that I do deserve your unbridled notecard wrath if I accidentally TP you to a bondage dungeon.

OK, I'm gonna get a little preachy for a MERE 60 SECONDS (at that) here, and then I'm going to return to pretending to unpack moving boxes:

Lately I've watched large groups of gals cluster around lucky chairs trying to win some popular battered skins that are hot right now. I've read bloggers oohing and ahhing over these same skins, the ones with blood-spattered and bruised faces.

I realize that SL is all about fun and fantasy, but speaking from the perspective of someone who grew up in a violent and abusive home, what's fun about women AVs running around looking like they've had the crap beaten out of them?

There's nothing funny about a split lip and a black eye. You can travel back in time and ask my nine-year-old self if you want. Or you can ask any woman in one of the thousands of shelters for battered women across the country.

Yeah, I realize that I'm taking a form of frivolous artistic expression a wee bit too seriously here, but congrats *certain skin designers*, you always strike a nerve with me when you release that type of skin.

If you're gonna make beaten-to-hell skins for women, at least include a bad-ass machine gun in the skins pack so I can blow the face off the next person who tries to ruin mine. I'm not a helpless child anymore.

Or a helpless noob for that matter!!! :D

*puts Rez Day hat back on and skips off to eat more cake and fly a kite*

Monday, March 9, 2009

Awkward moments from the road

Hi from the road.

For those of you who are new to this blog, I'm Em and sometimes I have a hard time NOT talking about my real damn life in this Second Life blog, but in the grand scheme of things, maybe that's a good thing. I don't know.

I'm currently en route to Tennessee (from Arizona), and WOO HOO, these Marriott Residence Inns have great wireless Internet connection!

So I log on tonight after a long hot day of . . . well, packing my car and a truck and driving three blocks to a hotel (we're running a little behind, oops) . . . and what do I find but . . . 


Oh lawdy! Yes, I'm doin' it, so no, I shouldn't be beeeeechin' about it but, I don't know. My only comment is "sheesh."

That aside, I've learned a lot about myself during my short time on the road, mainly that I cannot poop in front of my cats (who have been sequestered in my hotel bathroom).

Performance anxiety.

Um, let's change the subject:


Hey, you got it wrong, Kermit. It is OH SO EASY being green!

Yeah, yeah, yeah, I'm one of 8 million people running around in this gift from Nardcotix and no, I don't know if it was a subscribo gift or in-store gift or what. You can put your Sherlock Holmes hat on and figure it out if you so desire. I know you can! I have faith in you!

(Green is the new bitch slap.)

The necklace is by Alienbear for Nardcotix. The sunglasses are from Pacadi and sorry, I have no clue where that store is or how I got those glasses (can't find it in SL's STELLAR search engine). I'm assuming they were free because, as in real life, I rarely spend much money on sunglasses because I tend to break and lose them. 

Boobs courtesy of [the oBscene] skins and my sliders.

"Dear Obscene, Late last year I took a two-month break from SL during the holidays. After I returned and caught up on the blogs, I learned -- with much heartbreak -- that you gave out some cool hunt prizes and gifts while I was gone. Since I've spent a fortune in your stores AND referred my friends AND constantly given you awesome play here, um, could I please have a folder of the stuff I missed during the months of October through early January? Thanks!! Love, Emerald Wynn"

(yeah right, like that'd happen. sigh.)

Oh shoot, I promised you some awkward moments!!!


I'm traveling with my parents, which is awkward enough anyway. My mom needed to use my laptop to check her email. She turned it on and this blog was up on the browser. She said, "What is this? Why are you reading this . . . . is this a cartoon character? Who is Emerald? Are you reading cartoons online?"


Later my dad walked by just as I was snapping that close-up shot up there.

Of course he just saw some boobs on my screen.

"What the hell are you doing?" he asked.

"Playing a game!" I said as innocently as possible.

He watched over my shoulder as I walked around Eolande's looking for Flower No. 14 in the Most Random Hunt Ever. (I'm not making fun -- that's what it's called.)

"How do you win this game?" he said.

"By walking around and finding cool clothes for this chick on my screen" was my smooth answer.

"My God, that is a stupid game," he said and wandered off (thank God) to find ESPN on the hotel TV.

Laugh. Oops.

Speaking of hunts, thanks for the hint:


. . . but your grammar teacher would smack you up for that.

And I still can't find the damn flower in that store.

Here's a part of my blog that I like to call "Cool AV, Man!"



This dude's name was Chesto, and I probably should have asked him if I could stealth-take his pic. Oops.

Speaking of cool people, check out the video my friend Noelyci made to raise diabetes awareness in and out of SL:


And naw, I'm not an Insulin Pump pin-up girl. That was a purely unselfish plug right there.

Damn, I'm getting sleepy. Hope everyone is happy and safe.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Me and Elvis (or Rub My Belly for Good Luck)

Hey hey hey everybody, I have to wave goodbye to you here as I cram my stuff, two cats, a pet hermit crab (that's Mr. O'Bannion to you, though) and a bunch of plants into my 10-year-old beater Toyota and head across the country to Memphis.

Please pray for good weather, safe driving . . . and credit cards that don't get declined, specifically mine.

I have to *cough* temporarily move into my childhood bedroom for a few months while I help my mom help my dad recover from a surgery (did that make sense?) and, in the meantime, fix my screwed-up life.

My parents still only have dial-up Internet that's connected to their only phone line, so I guess this is goodbye for awhile.

On the bright side, I have an adorable two-year-old niece there that I can't wait to get my arms around. And I have a high school sweetheart who's magically single now (and still attractive!) who says he's got dibs on a date with me when I get home, so keep your fingers crossed.

Because after all, my life would be so boring without random pregnancy scares.

Speaking of, I grabbed some demo pregnancy shapes out of curiosity the other day:


YEAH! I make one bad-ass pregnant SL bish, if I do say so myself. Whut whuuuuut???

And I know I haven't changed out of that outfit in a week. Say something nasty and I'll SLAP you with my monster DEMO hand and then STOMP all over your quivery self with my equally formidable DEMO feet.

Speaking of my wardrobe, I completed that whole gridwide Twisted Hunt today in one marathon swoop, and take it from me, the prizes in that hunt are unbelievably awesome. I would not lead you astray.

I joined the Twisted Hunt Group for the as-advertised help if I needed hints, but they seemed a little tight in there. I eventually tired of asking for help to the awkward sound of crickets chirping on a blank chat screen, so I followed the advice of my friend PETER STINDBERG (someone's gonna take this fall with me) and bought a RAWKIN' treasure hunt HUD for 99L at Clever Things.

Later I opened my big fat mouth in the Twisted Hunt Group chat and told someone that I'd come help them find one of the 103 prizes with my RAWKIN' HUD and, YES, I got bitch-slapped by about 95 people at once.

One chick even called me the P-word!!!! And no, not "penis." Or "perplexing." Or even the better-suited "perky"! Use your filthy imaginations and you'll fill in the blank in no time.


Go ahead . . . I'll let you all screech, "CHEATER!!!!!!" one more time:

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 


I've said it once and I'll say it again. When you have ONE HUNDRED AND THREE items in a hunt that expands ACROSS THE GRID, and I cannot move from one place to the next without the chronological LANDMARKS in each prize, then HELL YES, if I get stuck in a 600,000-SQUARE-FOOT GOREAN FURNITURE STORE trying to find a BOX the size of a FLEA on my 8-INCH LAPTOP SCREEN, I am gonna give it a healthy 10-minute-maximum try and then I'm going to either a) ask for help or now, thank God, b) crank up my brand new treasure hunt HUD, find your very generous gift (thank you) and MOVE THE HELL ON.

(And would you like another side of BOLD ALL CAPS with that cheeseburger?)

Why do I sound so indignant? Because shortly after I slipped up, mentioned my HUD in the group and got body-slammed by a bunch of holier-than-me hunters, I TPed into one location where the store owner happened to be hanging out.

She looked at me and said, "Oh, hi Emerald! I've heard about you! . . . 


. . . you are banned from this store."

You really have not lived until you've heard that rubber-band boingy sound that SL makes when you get booted off someone's property.


Nice try, but I grabbed your hunt prize as I was sailing out of your store.

And your boyfriend.

It's a SCAVENGER HUNT, for Pete's sake. We're not CURING CANCER HERE, kids. And I am speaking to you AS a cervical cancer survivor -- a hard-earned hat that I rarely don unless it's to tell someone, "In the grand scheme of things, this is REALLY no big deal."

And for the record, I found Items 1-65 on my own. And even after that, I'd say it was a 50/50 ratio between the HUD and my awesome eagle eyes.

And even if I did have to cheat to find your impossibly concealed prize, I still cherished it and your work. It's not like I took it home in a separate "I cheated!" folder and . . . violated it or something.

And unlike a blogger who shall remain unnamed, I wasn't the one who publicized all the prize location SLurls this morning. But you know what, what if I had? You poured your heart and soul into your product, not where you hid it. Why do you care if people know where they are? 

The people who love the thrill of the hunt won't cheat anyway and instead will meticulously seek your gift with the hallowed reverence it deserves. 

The dash-and-grabs are always going to cheat if they can. They really don't care about you or your store. They just want free stuff, free stuff, free stuff! (I can hear them out there chanting right now.) 

It's just a fact that every owner has to accept when she or he decides to give out a hunt prize. But do we have to overanalyze it to death? (More than I just did?) Do we have to criminalize the resourceful ones?

Believe it or not, I am a traditional hunter, a tracker, a gunslinger, if you will. I will hunt your goods down with respect and gratitude, and then pause and pay due homage to that latex catsuit before I pour my sweaty body into it with love.

Unless I'm moving to Memphis the next day.

In that case, I'm gonna sprint through your sims like Flo-Jo, with all the gadgets, cheat sheets and help that I can cram in my fanny pack.

Either deal with the fact that there are different types of hunters out there and, yes, some will use a little help, or I guess you can systematically eject and ban whoever you want. Just know that when I finally get my $12 million RL inheritance, I will not be transforming any of it into lindens to spend in your store.


And as long as I'm making all kinds of people mad this week, I want to end on this one note:



PLEASE! No more!


No more hunts with hundreds of arrows encircling a smaller hunt for little hats and then the mini hunts in each store on your sim and then the daily retiring dollarbies, the onslaught of new gowns to mark every major occurrence, the very intimate relationship I have with your Subscribo and the many many messages it sends me a day. And now . . . ANOTHER HYUUUUUGE FANTASY HUNT on your sim! I'm sorry, but I just can't make this one. I still have to unpack 64 of my 139 Lemania Indigo Arrows from last month's hunt. Please. I can't . . . catch . . . a . . . breath. It's got to stop.

(Hey, I got that dress up there in her Cupid's Arrow Hunt last month and it's actually really artsy and cool. Shout out!)

Let us just pause for a week or two, OK?


(The woman is a marketing machine.)

That funny Ghostbusterish cusha-kinsi posing prop is free at Naho's Funny Shop.

Hey speaking of fun, I'd like say "Howdy!" to two readers who popped up out of the blue today to introduce themselves and were so nice to me, they made me cry (in a good way). I'm always shocked when people out there make it through these posts alive, and then when they tell me that they enjoy them, well, I start blubbering like Sally Fields at The Oscars.

So thank you, Ilyana and Selkie. I had fun with you today and you are too kind.

**maxxes out arm-length sliders and gives EVERYONE a huge, teary goodbye hug**

I love you, my beautiful shiny friends, and I'll miss you terribly. Please keep me in your prayers, if that's how you roll. 

The road ahead is really long in more ways than one.

I'm going to be so scared. :(