I’m going to just write this in one stream of consciousness so I make no apologies for the rambling nature of this post. I’m wordy, I know. Get over it 🙂
So here we are into another year of Second Life. This year will see my 10th anniversary in Second Life (assuming I actually survive until June). When I signed up for my account, if someone had told me I would still regularly be logging into SL in ten years’ time, I would have thought them insane.
In all of my ‘almost ten years’, I have rarely been away for very long. A week or two at most when I was away from internet camping or some such. I’ve never really taken a so-called SLacation (time out from Second Life) because like everyone else, I find it hard to be away for any length of time.
Second Life has, over the years, been my social life. I’m on a level playing field here. In ‘real life’ (funny how we all make the online/offline distinction as if it really matters. Personally it’s all just ‘life’ to me but some people are not as comfy as I am without a line drawn somewhere down the middle) my social skills are a little strained at best. I am hearing impaired if you didn’t know, which means that hanging out with people in groups, at bars or parties, can be hard work for me. I lipread and I don’t do well catching the spoken word. I get left out; I miss jokes or gossip and people just think I’m being cold or stand-offish.
In Second Life, we all talk with typed words (well, most of the people I know do). Means that I am able to communicate and be sharp-witted with everyone else in the room. That is a big thing for me.
The thing about Second Life is that every few months, it is like a new chapter in a book. I go to different venues, I hang with different people, I try different things. But lately I think I have been trying too hard to stay popular and it’s causing me to over-extend my friendships with people. I am sure most of my friends would say I am being over-analytical and I should get over myself; but I am my own worst critic: only-child-syndrome I call it. It’s a conflict between liking one’s own company and craving the attention of others. It’s a battle I will never win; I just have to learn not to piss people off in the process.
So here we are in 2017. Another new year, more changes and technology coming along in SL and no doubt many changes in faces (…actually literally this time around), venues, friendships and relationships. I know I will piss people off. I will hurt people. I will cause people to think less of me. I don’t do it maliciously or deliberately and often it happens because I care too much about people’s feelings. I’m a ride in an open top car without seat belts: you might end up getting hurt but the journey will be a lot of fun.