Renewal

One step forward, one step back, it seems, since my last blog post.


The threat of Brexit has receded somewhat for the time being, although I’m not holding out hope of any breakthrough soon in terms of ending this mess. Still, it means that other stories are now the focus of the news programmes.


Kittlen’s health remains a concern, both mental and physical, and that is continuing to have a knock-on effect on me. 🙁 It hasn’t been helped by some recent incidents in Second Life.

One was the return of Coyote, after being MIA for many months. She’s back doing DJ sets at both CFNM and Boudiccea. Kittlen was a bit annoyed, because Coyote has seemingly been accepted back as if her long absence was nothing of concern. Speaking for myself, I’m just bemused.

Kittlen also suspects that Coyote is trying to worm her way back into our lives because she misses the support we used to give her. But she’s out of luck if that’s so, because that ship sailed away long ago.

One thing that hasn’t changed, from what I heard and saw the few times I went to see Coyote perform, is her DJ-ing ability. In other words, she’s still where she was two or more years back, while both myself and Kittlen have raised our game several notches.


The other incident was more recent, and involved Gorean roleplay. Kittlen had been begging me to let her go play in the Gorean sims, and I reluctantly agreed after meeting and chatting to a mistress who was willing to take Kittlen under her wing.

However, things didn’t work out, and one scene in particular saw Kittlen safewording and screaming for me to come hold them. Eventually, I got the full story about what had happened from the mistress, Tasha. The rules of the Gorean sim required that Kittlen be branded as Tasha’s slave (for roleplay purposes—it was understood by all concerned that Kittlen was my girl) so that nobody else could try and claim her. But it brought back bad memories for Kittlen, and she bolted.

This put me in an uncomfortable position, as I had to apologise to Tasha for Kittlen’s breaking of the roleplay. Apparently, there had been other aspects of the roleplay that she’d not been willing to accept, and Tasha and the other roleplayers were tired of having to try and accommodate her behaviour.


All of this meant that I was starting to feel frazzled again, right when I needed to knuckle down and do my day-job in the real world. Thankfully, that went through without any major hitches, but worrying about Kittlen has not helped my mood, because I’m constantly dreading more bad news. 🙁

So I’ve made the decision to step away over Easter in order to recharge my batteries, and give myself time and space to decide my next moves. Kittlen doesn’t like it, but has agreed that I need the break. I know she’ll keep trucking as best she can. I just hope that we can reconnect somehow, and do so in a way that helps us both grow and move forward.

Feeling Blue

"Keep Calm And Carry On" poster

Apologies for the lengthy silence. Unfortunately, the ongoing flaming-clown-car-crash that is the UK Government and its attempts to foist a rubbish Brexit deal onto an unwilling Parliament (and by extension the British people) has sapped my spirits this month. We should have had a General Election by now, but for their own selfish reasons the Conservatives are clinging to power and refusing to recognise their disfunction.

Continue reading “Feeling Blue”

Second Life Avatar Challenge

Spiffy relaxing at home in Second Life

The other day, Strawberry Singh, whose blog I read regularly, posted one of her occasional challenges to get people to show off their Second Life avatars. It has been a while since I talked in detail about mine (if you’re interested in reading my previous post on my avatar’s evolution, you can find it here.)

Spiffy relaxing at home in Second Life
Spiffy relaxing at home in Second Life

I took the picture above at my private home. The chair I’m sat in is the appropriately-named Hypno Throne made by Dictatorshop. 🙂

I’m wearing the following:

  • Mesh body—Maitreya Lara
  • Mesh head—GA.EG Barbera 2.0
  • Shape—customised by myself, designed to be androgynous-to-fem
  • Skin—Lumae Eiirtae
  • Spots—Rainbow Cheetah tattoo by Catseye
  • Hair—Kelia by EMO-tion
  • Ears, eyes, antennae, make-up—all from Stargazer Creations
  • Clothing—all from r2 Fashion

Superb Owl* Sunday, With Swords

First of all, apologies for the lack of posts this past month. I have been dealing with the legal and financial processes following my father’s death, and recovering from months of carer duties.

Last week, a call went out in the Gorean Whip Radio staff channel for DJs to cover some coming events in Second Life for the station. As it happened, I now have a bit more flexibility in when I can broadcast, so I offered my services, much to the delight of Lucy, the Whip’s head events organiser.

The first of those was this past Sunday, at the City of Besnit in Second Life. The brief was that they were going to hold a sword tournament, with a series of arena fights and prizes for the winners. After some inquiries on my part, I worked out that I’d need to stock up on rock songs to play during the event, and would be providing commentary to the listeners not present at Besnit.

I had some trepidation in the days leading up to the event, as I’ve not been to many Gorean sims in Second Life, and am aware that I tend to stick out due to being a blue, rainbow-speckled alien. One place I visited wouldn’t let me broadcast from within the city walls due to my appearance, and I worried that the same might happen again. But I was reassured by Irish, the head of DJ management, that I’d be welcome at Besnit and that they were relaxed about my appearance.

Before the event, I got some pointers from Tristan, another Whip manager, who’d broadcast from Besnit the previous day to cover their dance contest. It’s just as well he did, otherwise I’d have gotten lost pretty quickly.

Fighting in Second Life isn’t a natural thing. By default, the most your avatar can do to others is shout at them or push into them, although the latter can be disabled by the owner(s) of the sim you’re in. (There are some other ways of attacking people, collectively known as ‘grieving’, but those are strictly prohibited and you’ll find yourself turfed out pretty quickly.)

In order to do a sword fight, each combatant needs to have a meter attached to them, which registers when they are struck by a sword and indicates how much damage they took. The meter’s display is visible above the combatant’s head, showing green-yellow-orange-red depending on how wounded they are. Once they’re critically wounded, they are forced to the ground. There isn’t any gore or blood as such, apart from the swords showing blood on them after dealing damage.

Another aspect of Second Life that I need to explain at this point concerns the camera position relative to your avatar. By default, this is a short distance behind and above you, but it can be moved and panned around independently. It can also zoom in and focus on something other than yourself. And there’s a particular function that I needed to use, which was the ability to make your camera track another avatar. This was what I ended up doing so that I could track the combat and tell the audience how the combatants were faring.

As it turned out, I needed to do this a lot, because the contest proceeded very rapidly. Eight men started the tournament, with four preliminary rounds, two semifinal, a runner-up final, and then the grand final. Then there was a special round where all eight men had to fight it out at once, with a prize for the last man standing.

And I was doing the best I could to follow all of this, talking as I went. I ended up doing that for over an hour, and needed about 20 minutes after to get my breath back!

Spitfire in Gorean freewoman garb
This is about as Gorean as I get!

This picture was a screenshot I took at home in Second Life, of the outfit I wore to Besnit. I ended up ditching the veil, as it just didn’t fit my face right and I couldn’t edit it. While there are lots of stores selling Gorean clothing, not much of it is designed for blue, rainbow-speckled aliens.

Here is the recording of my show from Besnit, if you’d like to hear what I sound like when I’m working my DJ magic. 😀

(*Last Sunday was also the NFL Super Bowl final, so we had some competition for people’s attention.)

The World Wide Whip

DJ Spitfire promo picture for Gorean Whip Radio

Amidst all the hullabaloo of the last several months, I’ve not really talked much about my DJ-ing in Second Life, and my show on Gorean Whip Radio in particular.

It’s hard to believe it’s nearly 11 months since I first joined the station. It was very much a spur-of-the-moment thing. Kittlen had been approached by Irish Breen, the general manager, who’d known her a long while, and asked if she wanted to be a radio DJ. When I heard this, I decided it was worth a try applying myself. As it turned out, I was accepted very quickly—Irish practically hired me on the spot!

As I detailed around the time, my start wasn’t without its teething problems. And it soon became apparent that doing a radio show was a lot different from just DJ-ing live. Adverts need to be played periodically, as well as station information. And I needed to think more about what I wanted to play, and why, and communicate that to the audience.

I like to think that I’ve improved my craft as a result of doing my weekly show on Gorean Whip Radio. The station owners and managers have been very helpful and supportive, and I enjoy hanging out in the staff chat discussing what’s going on in both the real world and Second Life. I’ve also had the opportunity to help create adverts and promotional material for on-air broadcast, and be one of the station’s voices.

The best experience so far was back in May when Gorean Whip Radio was the official radio station for the 2018 Second Life Sci-fi Expo. Both myself and Kittlen had a lot of fun with that!

The only real sticking point has been the fact that a lot of the sponsoring sims insist on visitor being in-character as Goreans. As a blue rainbow-speckled alien, I am exceedingly out-of-character in such a setting! Some sims do have OOC areas for parties, a few specifically for Gorean Whip Radio, so I can go there and do my stuff.

I’ve only had one instance so far where I’ve been frowned upon, and it does niggle a bit. But the fact is that the persona I present in Second Life is not only who I am, but also how I advertise myself on-air. Heck, my show is titled “DJ Spitfire Probes Your Ears” and I use the intro and ending music from Bernard Herrmann’s score for “The Day The Earth Stood Still” for the opening and closing of my shows and during voiceovers.

I also take comfort from the knowledge that I do get plenty of people tuning in when I’m on-air. While I’m not the biggest draw on the schedule, it is still regularly on a par with the largest audiences I’ve had for any of my DJ-ing gigs to date.

If you want to hear me doing my stuff, I broadcast every Wednesday at 2pm Pacific Coast time, or 10pm UK time. Details on how to tune in to Gorean Whip Radio can be found on their website, as well as my show and DJ biography pages.

Tubthumping

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KCkmIyC6v00

I get knocked down
But I get up again
You’re never gonna keep me down
—Chumbawamba, ‘Tubthumping’

Fun fact: over on another website where I had a profile, I would using song titles or lyrics for the names of my journal entries. 🙂 Continue reading “Tubthumping”

Separated

Around the time I was finalising my previous blog post, the shit well and truly hit the fan. Kittlen threw Penalt out of their home. Then she left a message in the family group telling them to protect me and left. She also left YouMustObey, removed all of her stuff from my land parcel in Second Life, and un-collared herself from me on there too.

Coming in rapid succession, I was walloped and left reeling for a while. Thankfully, other family members reached out to check on and comfort me.

The problems between Kittlen and Penalt had been brewing for a long time, but Coyote’s actions brought it to the boil. The last straw had been her collaring of Penalt without warning or consultation. Kittlen flipped out and told Penalt he had to choose between her and Coyote. He decided to pick Coyote. Continue reading “Separated”

The Trickster

Coyote

Real life seems intent on throwing more curveballs at me. My mother had a breast scan which revealed the early stages of cancer. She opted for a mastectomy over minor surgery plus radiotherapy. So I’ve had to take out more time to support my terminally ill father while she recovers. As a result means that I’ve had to scale back my online time, which affects my ability to interact with Kittlen.

There is another curveball that I want to discuss. One that came at both Kittlen and myself several months ago, and whose effects we are both still dealing. This one has a name—Coyote. Continue reading “The Trickster”

Positivity Over Negativity

 

Snapshot9_113
My girl Kittlen performing at SL15B. The theme this year was crystal, as you can probably guess from all the bling in the background.

Second Life is celebrating its 15th birthday (SL15B) at the moment. As part of that, it has been running a week of music events running across several areas. And my Kittlen was not only one of those invited to perform, but subsequently did several fill-in slots for others who couldn’t make it. I am so proud of her! Not only did she kick ass, but she worked with the support staff and other artists to help things run smoothly. 🙂

Continue reading “Positivity Over Negativity”