Friday, June 11, 2010
"You haven't really lived" (updated to include the hot mess)
Today I read a blogger who seemed like she was tongue-in-cheeking (I just made up a verb) this blog's style. (Update: Or maybe not! — See comments.) And since she's actually a blogger I fangirl from afar and enjoy reading, I'm just going to allow myself five seconds for hurt feelings (1. 2. 3. 4. 5.) and then say, "Well played!" YES - you absolutely need to use a lot of ALL CAPS (don't forget to BOLD them, though) and insert the word "freakin'" in every other paragraph to capture some of the literary essence that is Emerald Wynn. And ellipses - YES! I love them so much. Just heed your grammar teacher and use three periods if it's used in the middle of the sentence, four if it's ending one. Starting sentences with conjunctions also is key, and in that case you are allowed to throw that old-school grammar rule to the wind. My only constructive feedback is that you missed the underlying sense of humor, joy and witty self-deprecation. Overall though, EXCELLENT effort! Grade: B+
I feel wretched writing a frivolous blog post about Second Life when some of my friends there have just been laid off. And to the contrary, I also feel cheesy writing some kind of attempt to be reflective and consoling right now. I'm also not in the mood to rant about how putting SL on a Web browser platform is just going to leave it wide open and more accessible to an influx of A-holes with no emotional investment in the place.
So I'm not going to write any of those posts.
I'm just going to quickly point you in the direction of an SL blog post I read recently and the journey on which it took me. And wait for it, because it does loop back to something I want to say to my now-unemployed LL friends.
I read Aisuru Rieko's blog post on EGL fashions in SL and thought it was fab. She mentioned a Super Dollfie. I said, "WTF is a Super Dollfie?" So being the "researcher personality type" I am, I Googled it and read about these dolls in fascination. Then I wandered around some Flickr streams. Then I wandered around some forums. And sometimes the fascination became morbid fascination: The amount of money collectors spend on these dolls, the way some of them talk about them as if they were alive, the levels of obsession involved in this hobby, the whole ABJD community in general (that sounds sexy, huh? It stands for "Asian Ball-Jointed Doll."), the way some of the members are Doll Nazis. Discussion of Barbie, for instance, is BANNED from these forums. Good for them.
But wow. I mean, WOW. Seriously. It's a subculture I never knew was out there, and now I religiously read one prominent forum with the same sort of "look at the way they live!" sense of awe I had when I was all wrapped up in "Meerkat Manor."
And then I decided I wanted a Super Dollfie. NOT out of greed. The thing about these dolls is that you can customize the makeup (called a faceup), the clothes, the hair, the eyes -- and if you're talented enough, you can flip them in a secondhand marketplace for a nice profit. For example, see that picture up there? It's called a LUTS Delf. Um, I won it on eBay. And yes, the seller made a nice profit. :-\
So this was my stream-of-consciousness thought process: "Wow, I could buy one of these things and then buy an assembly kit and then practice and practice and practice until I become, like, this kick-ass, in-demand, famous ABJD faceup artist -- it'd be like having a 3D avatar -- and then I could quit my stressful PR gig and just sit around and make toys all day, sort of like one of Santa's elves, and I'd get interviewed by prominent doll magazines and Oprah would book me for her last show and I'd live happily ever after, although granted I'd be one of those strange women living in a house full of slightly creepy dolls but I'd be driving a Jag so whatever and maybe with some luck I could find a man who would put up with my strange hobby but probably not so at least I'd have plenty of money to invest in vibrators."
Yeah. It went like that. And oops, I just said "vibrators."
So I bought a Super Dollfie. Hell no, I don't really have a spare $800 lying around, but I do have a credit card that I really don't give a damn about because I'm going to be paying it off for the rest of my life anyway, so whatever. And then I got on another Web site and customized my own (more affordable) doll. I chose pale blue skin, violet eyes and wild vanilla (yellow) rock star hair. She arrived yesterday. I thought she would turn out to be pretty cool. But she looked like a smoking-hot mess. I hid her under my bed. She will probably try to stab me with a little tiny doll knife in the middle of the night.
That skin is light blue, I swear. And oops, later I switched one eye to blue and steampunked (hey, I just made up another verb) the other one. I have a bucket of eyes. (not really)
Oops. I guess I need more practice. And money. Those things are expensive. So maybe it's time for my brief fling with them to die. I don't tend to give up easily, but I do tend to go broke rather quickly.
Whenever I do something stupid . . . like drop about $3,000 on a bunch of slightly creepy dolls . . . I play this game called "You Haven't Really Lived."
For example, in this case it would be:
"You haven't really lived until you've embarked on a fantasy business venture, even if you failed miserably at it."
"You haven't really lived until you've dropped a ridiculous amount of money on Something You Don't Need At All."
I'm adding those items to my current and ever-growing list of Epic Fails and Stupid Decisions That Really Make Me Awesome Or At Least Allow Me to Pretend They Do. And I guess I need to clarify that this is MY list -- I don't hold the world to these expectations. And my list is 18 miles long, so I'm going to spare you most of it.
You haven't really lived until you've had at least one pregnancy scare. You get bonus points if it involved a panicked late-night trip to the drugstore to sheepishly buy a pregnancy test.
You haven't really lived until you've gotten your heart smashed into a billion little pieces and survived to eventually own that battle wound with pride.
You haven't really lived until you've been thrown out of a bar for dancing on a table. (Um, right?)
You haven't really lived until you've tried something that absolutely and completely terrifies you.
You haven't really lived until you've taken a risk (at least in my city) and helped a complete stranger.
You haven't really lived until you've had to rely on the kindness of a total stranger for help.
You haven't really lived until you've rescued an animal from almost certain death.
You haven't really lived until you've been fired from at least one job. Seriously.
You haven't really lived until you've relocated to a city where you don't know a soul and built a new life for yourself.
You haven't really lived until you've taken a swan-dive into a job that seems way the hell over your head and evolved into an Olympic-caliber swimmer there -- or at least gave it a shot.
You haven't really lived until you've heard the words, "This may be malignant." I can't tell you how much those four words will completely change your perspective on life.
You haven't really lived until you've walked away from a job with your head held high, looked fearlessly into the face of the Great Unknown and said, "Bring it on."
To my recently laid-off friends at LL -- and the ones I don't know at all -- my wish for you is that the Great Unknown has something unbelievably incredible in store for you. And honestly, when all is said and done, it usually does. That's why I'm not going to offer my condolences. I'm just gonna say, "Rock on with your bad selves."
Posted by Emerald Wynn at 9:02 AM