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Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Ask Dr. Philly: "Pointing Out 'That Guy' "


Dr. Philly,

I'm a club manager of a venue that serves both the community it's in, and has also attracted a small following of those from outside. One way I publicize it is through my Facebook feed. 

Well, one evening someone plasters an image of a woman doing unspeakable acts with animals, followed by an angry rant spewing hatred of Second Life. He claimed to be the owner of a couple sims whom had people doing the most vile things from child rape to bestiality on his land, saying the Lab closed his sims and threw him out of the Grid. He denounced our virtual world as a land of the most sickening perversions, and demanded if I had any decency at all, I would leave and help spread word of "the truth" about Second Life.

My response was to delete the his comment. While I can take an insult, I couldn't have that image he posted due to it's graphic nature and it being against Facebook Terms of Service. Well, his response was fury. Accusing me of covering up "the truth," and defending perversion, rape, child abuse, and all sorts of other crimes. Finally, he told me he'd be reporting me to Facebook to get me banned.

Dr. Philly, if what this guy says happened to him is true, it was wrong. But I can't accept his hate either. While I don't know exact numbers of these sorts of sims, it was months before I came across so much as a girly bar here in Second Life. Let alone a "kink club" of which I've heard tales about, but only saw for myself when a friend TPed me in one one as a joke, well over a few years after I came here. To paraphrase a Dutch friend, Holland is not just a few "red light" city blocks in Amsterdamn, and Second Life is not a handful of hardcore RP sims that very few of it's residents ever set foot in.

I still feel mad about what he did, and he's been posting his hate on his own Facebook page. Shall I counteract them in his own comments? And do I have anything to worry about by his ban threat?

Pointy-Haired Manager


To the Point,

   These kinds of civil disputes can be very tangled affairs and in many cases neither party is 100% right. In an arbitration, we would first get a detailed description, from each, describing the problem from their own perspective. Step two, make each read the other's description. That done, we can now ask meaningful questions. If the man owned the sims and things were being done that he does not allow, why was he letting them stay? Why does he target your club, instead of the ones on his sims? If he is so against "porn," why is he spreading it in a public setting?

   The fact is, one,there are many such adult clubs in SL, which work within the rules and two, if an individual has a bad opinion of a person or place, it's just that, an opinion. Opinions aren't rules, until you get a majority to vote on them. Another thing to remember is, Second life is the product of over 44 million imaginations. The tricky thing about the imagination is, it has no picture for the word "NOT." If you put a "Thou shall not..." in your mind, it immediately goes about drawing it to you.

Far more powerful than a mere physical brain, our minds can magically create anything it pictures. There is no Top Secret plan to keep you from gaining super mind powers. You just haven't asked the right question yet. Conflicts end as soon as both parties imagine a solution, as a picture where everybody has a happy ending and maybe even a new friend.

   This has proven true through out my life, but I don't ask anybody to just take my word for it. I can only hope that I have stirred your curiosity enough to test it for yourself.

Still waiting for the fat lady to sing,
   Dr. Philly

===========================

Hey Doc,

   I can't help but notice that you and your little bunny friend, Sha, are somewhat better known and more influential in your community than I am in mine, despite your having been in SL for fewer years than I have. If we all start out second life with the same abilities and bank account, how is it that some seem to be born with a silver spoon in their mouth? If, on the other hand, we all have the same potential to become noteworthy, influential members of the community, there must be some skill involved, that I, one of tens of millions in SL, could learn and develop and thereby get my own silver spoon. As a "Pro", are there any "tricks of the trade" that you could pass on to us little guys, to help elevate our position in the community?

Signed,
   That Guy in episode 81 of Galaxy Quest

Hey you Guys,

   No doubt, we have all heard, when it comes to turning ideas into forms of reality, expressions like "Money talks" and "Follow the money". The same principles are at work, whether we are in a real or virtual world, so it is important to understand what money is and how it works. In and of itself, a dollar is no more valuable than a piece of paper or any rock on the ground. Money gets it value because it is a good conduit for turning ideas into form. Keep in mind, money is not the only path that ideas can take. It is not even the best way of connecting ideas and forms. Like computers, our mind energy can have a wired or wireless connection to the "get'er done" network. By learning to mix the mental energy (an ideal) with some emotional energy (enthusiasm) and a little physical energy (rolling up your sleeves and getting a little dirt on your hands), you can convert any molehill into a mountain, without spending a single L$. How, you ask? John Lennon said it best, in his song, "Imagine".

In "real life", we have money for the necessities, like food, clothing and shelter. In Secondlife, we don't ever require food or even air. You can spend all day walking on the bottom of the sea or the moon and never take a breath. On the Marketplace, there are enough free items to fill any needs. Shelter is totally unneeded, because there are no elements that can harm us. Home is a handy place to open your new items, but there are lots of other places to do that, without the need of paying rent. What about money for things that aren't free? How do I get L$s to buy cool stuff? You mentioned my "little bunny friend". With her hundreds of avatars, each with the latest selection of mods and clothing, the castles, vehicles and other rich girl toys, it might surprise you to learn that, until recently, she never bought any Linden dollars. If there seems to be a silver spoon in her mouth, it is because she imagined one there, from day one. Imagination is the principle currency in Secondlife. When we log into the grid, we have a picture in our mind of who our avatar is and what it's position is in the community. When you are in world, there is an entire network of computers dedicated to turning the pictures in your mind into a virtual world around you. If you want a better world, begin with putting better pictures in your mind. Does something this simple really work? Yes, 100%, so give it a try. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.

Imagine that,
   Dr. Philly

Monday, January 18, 2016

Ask Dr. Philly: "Up The Wall With The Blues"


To Doctor Philly,

   I have some friends, on the sim I live on, that I would love to be closer with. The problem is, they seem to be unresponsive, in conversations, most of the time. Sometimes it's like they are on another planet and radio communication takes a half hour to get there and back. I try to be patient, but there are times when I feel tempted to push them out a hole in my skybox floor. I've even seen one of them A.F.K., several times, when she was dancing on a pole for tips. What's wrong with these people and what can be done to make them fit in better?
signed,
 Talks to walls


Peace Talks,
   Communication breakdowns are always irritating. Fortunately, science can lead us to finding ways to improve the art of communicating. At every scale, from individual sub-atomic quarks to the entire universe itself, we observe life forms. These countless life forms all share two desires; to be individuals, making their own choices and to gather with others of their kind, to form a synthetic greater life form. Quarks join to make sub-atomic particles, which join to make atoms, which form molecules, cells, plant and animal bodies, etc. The incentive for forming greater life forms is the synergistic increase of powers and abilities. The greater life is much greater than the sum of it's little life parts. In order for little lives to gather into greater ones, they must surrender part of their own self- determination, for the good of the group. Each modifies it's behavior/mannerisms, depending on position within the greater body and how it may be most useful there. A cell that is acting in the right manner could be said to have "good manners." A cell with bad manners will be an irritant to the rest of the body and will be eliminated, out the back door.

When somebody in the room is asleep at the wheel (AFK), they are, temporarily not one with the group. Commune means "with one." We all have to get up from the keyboard, now and then. The best way to avoid any disturbance to the rest of the group is to excercise good manners. If you need to step away from the group and not be cut out, give them a BRB (be right back) followed by a BACK, on your return.
We can't force others to have good manners, but we can set good examples and let others know that manners are appreciated. In the meanwhile, at least you know, when you talk to your walls, they aren't  going to just walk off from you.

At your service,
Dr. Philly

-----------------------------------------------------

Dear Doc,
   I love that in SL I can be anything and do anything I want. Lately, one of my friends has been saying that I should pick the best avatar, species and gender and stay that way all the time. That doesn't sound like fun, to me. Is there some kind of rule that I don't know about? Am I allowed to have fun or not?
signed,
  Stuck inside of foxes with the bunny blues again


Dear Stuck,
   The main purpose of any universe, real or virtual, is to answer every single "What If" question that can be asked. The quest for answers brings a never ending stream of new experiences. With each question that's answered, we "Become" something that's New and Improved. I'm fond of telling folks that "Even an old god can learn new tricks."  In some old, mistranslated writings, a prophet asks God his name, to which the reply was, "I am that I am." We have confirmed that the correct translation should be "I am BECOMING that which I will become."

I don't know all the official rules in Second Life, but the top of any list should say, "Thou shall have great fun, gaining new experiences and becoming all you can become.

From the horse's mouth,
Dr. Philly

Monday, January 11, 2016

Ask Dr. Phily: "Between a Rock and a Shady Place."


Dear Dr. Philly,

   Through some misunderstandings, I feel that the administrators of the sim and some of the residents are angry at me and want to do me harm. I have taken this up, with those in charge and been told I can stay, but still feel unsafe in my home. I am just a little guy. What can I do to get out of this mess?

Signed,
   A.F.K. under my rock




 To Mr. K.,

   Can I call you A? I'm going to let you in on a very little known important secret on how things get done, anywhere in the universe, RL and SL included. Everything in the universe that we call "matter" has it's roots in an idea that mattered. That idea inspires minds to create images of it. We call that "Imagination". Our feelings enthusiastically take up these images and create electro-magnetic meshes which draw pre-existing matters to give the original idea a solid form. Long story short, everything that's happening around us is being cooked up in our imaginations, like it or not. Don't just take my word for it. You have to prove it for yourself. I know you have an imagination, or you wouldn't be in SL. Put and develop in your mind the image that you are "That Guy". That guy, who everybody likes and respects and says hi to, when he walks in a room. That guy, that everybody is friends with and smiles every time they think of him. Keep your image free of any negative qualities. Have good, happy feelings about your image. When the image and feelings are complete, drop it, forget about it. Right on time, you will become "That Guy"

  Dr. Philly

 ++++++++++++++++

Dear Doc,

   I have an anoying new neighbor, that's driving me and my friends nuts. Whenever he's around, it's always talk about doom and gloom, we're all gonna die. Dude, it's a GAME, get over it! If I ban him from my home, that would only add more stress. Can you give me a more civilized way to handle this guy?

signed,
   Peeks-Thru-Shades




 To Peeks,

   I think you will like my "High Tech" methods of handling group conflicts. In the process, we'll also share some ideas about how time works. We'll check the weather forcast, before we proceed. When it comes to predicting the path of dangerous storms, Meteorologists use "computer models", which can be run using a different set of "what ifs", hundreds of times per minute, ending in the most probable path. The actual storm path takes days to finish. The computer model path takes a nano second. Same paths, different time scale.

  If we step back and take a look at Second Life as a method of running computer models of interpersonal relationships, we can find the shortest behavioral path to a "happily ever after" civilization. In a one hour movie or TV show, all the events shown cover more than one hour's time. For the person at the keyboard, the soul of the avatar, an hour of movie or an hour of SL both offer the same amount of new experience. The added advantage in SL is that we each write our own lines, in each new daily episode of a sitcom and the length of time you spend in world is equal to one day's experience to both the avatar and it's soul. This accounts for why we have all felt that time is faster in SL. We are all variables in a computer model society. We can write our own scripts, but not those of others. Over time, we can influence what others write. The important trick is, don't keep playing the same re-runs each day. With each new episode, make your av say and do things that might help steer the show to a happy ending. With a little practice, you WILL get good results.

Open your shades, your front door, hit [Ctrl]+[Shift]+[Y] and let that SLun shine in.

Dr.Philly

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Interview With Dr. Philly


By Becky "Sha" Shamen

Just as in the real world, Second Life has it's share of faux pas and social blunders, which take away from a community's maximum enjoyment via social interactions. In the real world, through print and broadcast media, we have a host of behavioral gurus, helping us improve our manners. Perhaps it is time for Second Life to have a hero of it's own. As they say in the East, when the patient is ready, the doctor will come. Learning of the arrival of a new sage, in the neighborhood, we sent out an invitation to an interview at Sha's place.

Join us now and meet the new, been there, done that, go-to guy and find out how things work and how to make your world a little better, ......

Dr. Philly

Sha: Welcome to my home, Dr. Philly.
Dr: Thank you, Miss Shamen,...or should I call you "Sha"
Sha: Most just call me Sha. What should we call you?
Dr: Young lady, you can call me anything, as long as it's not late to dinner.
Sha: I understand, Doc, that you will be offering your services to the SL community, free of charge. 
Dr: Yes, indeed. In fact, I've already spoken to your Editor, Bixyl, about a regular column, called "Ask Dr. Philly", or something along those lines. Readers are being asked to submit their questions, regarding social behaviors to the Newser and it's staff. When we get enough questions, we'll produce the column.
Sha: We'll look forward to reading it. Dealing with social behaviors sounds pretty complex. What kind of skill can one horse introduce at the trough, to make this a better zoo?
Dr:  I am, what some would call, a Scientist/Philosopher and the whole universe is my laboratory, filled with endless experiments. Over half a century of careful observations has taken my perceptions into the 4th dimension, that of Scale. Regardless of whether we zoom down to the smallest sub-atomic particle or out to the edge of the universe itself, we note that the difference between chaos and order follows the same plan, at every zoom level. The whole universe is made and controlled by a simple set of rules or principles. As above, so below. Any one or thing, that does not play by the rules, is out of the universe game. Some make errors, because they don't know the rules of the game. The rules are very simple, but how they apply to every situation would fill many volumes. We often get compliments to our explanations like, "Why didn't they just say it that way in the first place".  If you write in to "ask Dr. Philly", the replies will offer readers a whole new dimension of answers and different ways of seeing things.
 
[Sha leads Dr. Philly to her slide show of community affairs]
 
Sha: That sounds like a very useful service, Dr. Philly. I'll assist you in any way I can. Doing service to one's community is always a joy.
Dr: That it is, Sha, and from your past articles, I'm sure we're on the same horse path.
Sha: It's been a pleasure, introducing you Doctor. I'm sure we will all be hearing more from you.
Faithfully submitted,
"Sha"

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Nine Years Later


Bixyl Shuftan

Normally, I pay more attention to when my virtual career as an online journalist began, though yours truly was so occupied with delivering the news, it slipped my mind this year. But I did remember one other milestone: the anniversary of when I came into Second Life, or "Rezzday." It was nine years ago when I first stepped into Second Life.

I had gotten my start into going online with America Online, and stuck with them for a long time, partially because of the easy to remember email address I had. This meant that I was stuck with dial-up. Some online friends were starting to talk about online gaming, notably "World of Warcraft." But one mentioned a place known as Second Life, a virtual world that allowed one to build all kinds of places there. And also to design one's own avatar. My friend would show me the screenshots of their avatar: an anthro lioness whom was dressed up in everything from a Victorian dress to a harem girl outfit.

Finally I signed up with a fast speed service that allowed me to keep my existing email address. I could finally check out the two places my friends were talking about so much. In World of Warcraft, I joined two friends there with Horde accounts, setting up a Tauren druid. But I also decided to give Second Life a try. So on December 17, 2006, I went to secondlife.com, downloaded the client software for the computer I had, then set up an account.

Two decisions I had were the name and the starting appearance. Thinking a bit, I remembered a favorite character from the roleplaying games I did with real-life friends: Bixyl. "Shuftan" was close to the old character's last name, so that's what I used. As for appearance, there were several styles of clothes and hair style and color among several human avatars, and one non-human avatar: the "Furry." As a science-fiction nut, I close the latter.

And with that, I turned the viewer on, pressed the button to log in, and what I saw was a sea of gray and shapes. As the seconds ticked on, the shapes gradually took form and slowly went from grey to color. My avatar took shape before me, and I saw I was on a piece of land with grass, trees, and signs and walkways. The sign near me had blurry words for a while, but after some moments they became clear, "Welcome to Orientation Island," with an arrow showing which way to proceed. Taking a look at the controls, I found those for movement, then for sound and music. The music button when pressed, I began hearing smooth gentle background music, as if in an elevator, with the occasional line, "If you open up your mind, you can build a whole new wor-ld."

Progress through the beginners course was slow. I didn't know the term "lag" at the time, though I was thinking molasses. I came across directions on avatar appearance, chatting, and others, but walking from point to point was slow, taking some minutes, and the viewer was prone to crashing. There were others on the course. Some stuck around long enough to rezz, others remained gray as they walked on ahead of me. At one point, events in real life needed my attention, and I had to turn off the viewer for a while. But I would later return to finish things. Eventually I would finish the course, but it took me a while, probably over two hours to cover the amount of territory the same place would take just five minutes to cover when I did a few days ago to take the pictures for this article. There was a teleport to Help Island at the end. But I didn't linger there for additional directions. I went out to explore a few random locations.

A couple days later, my friend and I chatted briefly in an AOL chatroom and we decided to meet up inworld. After I logged in, she Instant-messaged me there, and explaining what a teleport request was, sent me one. Meeting up, she explained a few things and showed me more pictures of scenes acrosss Second Life, the most memorable was of a prank a busty girl played on a guy whom was slouched forward from being away-from-keyboard. She also gave me a thousand Linden dollars to get another avatar later on, "It's no big deal getting a buddy a four dollar cheeseburger in real life." Among the things she herself was proud of was finding a niche in the Second Life clothing market, Victorian dresses, and being able to take full advantage of it. She was making the equivalent of several hundred real dollars a year, after virtual land rental and other expenses. Not enough to quit her day job, but a nice little bonus.

Soon after, my friend would tell me she'd gotten a position of leadership in her home community. So that meant less time for us to chat. I didn't know anyone else here, and my friends in World of Warcraft had no such distractions. So for a few months I didn't get on Second Life much, having fun with my friends in the Massive Multiplayer Online Game. The objectives there were more easily defined, and my friends there were often around to chat with and often meet up with for questing together.

So what would have better kept my attention here in these early days? More friends for one. But I wasn't sure what to do as random exploring was just showing garishly-decorated residential areas. If I had done an Internet search for Second Life websites, it hadn't resulted in anything at the time. There was no Destination Guide of interesting places. Hamlet Au would later invite readers to give their own newcomer experiences (here).

Several months later, my Second Life friend would get my attention again. The Relay for Life was having their "Relay Walk" with lots of things to see. So I went over, and was impressed with the exhibits I was seeing. I think I saw some of the enthusiasm for the event as well.

My interest once again piqued, I began to look up more about the virtual world after the Relay Weekend was over. I found out about Luskwood, and headed there. The place being a bustling area of people after many sims of little but quiet, it took me a little time to get the gist of how people interacted. But it became my first real hangout in the virtual world, hearing about other places to explore.

Although I had gotten a bushier tail, I was still wearing the starter avatar. Not having a steady income in Second Life, and not wanting to put money in yet, I felt I had to be careful, feeling what I chose would be my appearance for a long time. After a great deal of thought, I settled on the Luskwood Red Fox as my appearance, buying the avatar at Luskwood.

After having had the starter furry for months, it felt like I had finally shed my "baby fur."  It is still my everyday look, despite suggestions over the years that I get a more recently made one. I've sometimes commented, "several weeks of thought, several years of use." In October, I caught a lucky break, winning several thousand Linden dollars at a Luskwood anniversary party. With this windfall, I got a second avatar for Halloween: vampire bat. It was fun flying around, but after a while it was back to foxy.

Meeting up with people at Luskwood, I made friends as Lomgren Smalls, Caelia Bailey, Hervy, and Kara Nakamori.  Lomgren and Caelia, the latter under another name, I would stay friends with to this day.  Kara and I would become close friends for the next several months. She would introduce me to another group of friends, notably Blarion and Keli, whom hung around at a less populated, and less laggy place: the Student Travel Association sims, or STA. My adventures with Kara can be read about in their own article written in March 2011.

Looking up websites about Second Life, I eventually came across the Second Life Newspaper. They asked for Reader Submissions, and giving them a few, I was offered a job there. I was thrilled and happy. I now had a steady income doing something I liked, writing, and an office as well.

So one year later, December 2007, I was doing pretty good. I had a circle of friends, a steady income, and a couple places to hang out. Life, or in this case virtual life, was good.

Since then, quite a bit has happened. Much of it has been documented in my stories for the Second Life. Some however has been given little or no attention in my writings. My friends and family in real life did not usually share my enthusiasm for the virtual world. Some were impressed with only that I was making a little money writing about it. A few simply told me the virtual world wasn't for them, with it's lag and no set goals at the start. Others felt a grown man would there for one reason, joking I was there just for the "cyber-noogie." On the Internet, there were some who spoke against the freedom the virtual world, saying it just meant undesirables came over. And they weren't talking about griefers, but "perverts, aspies, and cripples."

It's my experience the "perverts" here, minus the few whom take it to a form of griefing, aren't a problem to those not interested in their kind of fun, no worse than my real-life  coworkers. Mental handicaps, well, to paraphrase a friend, "having asperger's does not mean being a jerk." Almost all I've met are well-meaning individuals, sometimes creative and industrious ones. And for those whom think  physical handicaps make one less of a person, well, I have nothing to say to you.

People come here for different reasons, to see the creations others have made, to roleplay in a way simple tabletop gaming doesn't allow, for music and art, to interact with other creative souls like themselves, and more. The result has been a virtual world unlike any other place online. While some individuals have had their time here and departed, others have been coming here to take their place. Perhaps the day-old newcomer you come across today will a year later be a highly successful fashionista, live musician, Relay for Life team leader, or maybe online journalist.

It's your, any my, Second Life. Let's make the most of each of ours.

"If you open up your mind, you can build a whole new wor-ld."

Bixyl Shuftan

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Nydia Tungsten on the "Anti-Christmas Party"


By Bixyl Shuftan

Nydia Tungsten is a vixen of many talents, video producer, sim manager, estate owner, and club owner. But before all those, she made a name for herself as DJ "Naughty Nydia," with a list of tunes from mild to wild. This Thursday, Nydia Tungsten will be DJing for her "Anti-Christmas" Party. Earlier this week, she asked to have a few words with the Newser to address some concerns she was hearing about the event. So I met up with her at her home at Mouse Hold Manor.

 "Some accusations have come up that I feel need to be put to rest," Nydia explained. I asked what was wrong, and she continued, "Some say my Anti-Christmas DJ set that I do every year is because I hate Christmas and what it stands for, (that) I hate God and everything to do with Him and/or her or whatever they believe. That simply is NOT true. I respect what everyone believes as long as they don't try and force it on others. And as for Christmas, I LOVE IT, it is the one time of the year most people around the world think of others more than themselves. I have no problem with what any one believes."

"What my set does is simply lighten the mood, since corporations have been slamming us with ads since before Halloween. I love Christmas but HATE the commercialization event it has become. Let's face it ....it is BAD. Most of the world celebrates Christmas, and they sit back and laugh at the U.S. because of the riots shopping has become, 'Black Friday is when all the idiots go out and knock little kids over for a ferkin rice cooker. People like myself just want to scream in frustration over the stupid few. My 'naughty' songs are just a way to release that, not take anything away from anyones beliefs.

"If your beliefs are easily offended by others poking fun at it all in good humor, please don't come. But don't say I hate Christmas or what people believe. There is a statement in my profile that I really believe, 'Religion is like a penis. It's fine if you have one; it's fine if you're proud of it, but don't go waving it about in public. And for God's sake, don't try to shove it down children's throats.' I was religious at one time, and I loved the jokes those brave enough to tell me would share with me."

I asked, "How do you think this misunderstanding got started?" Nydia answered, "The name I gave it I think. I call it my 'Anti-Christmas Special.' Bad idea on my part I guess. But it isn't anti-Christmas, just anti-sickening sweet ads on the TV and radio that start in October. It is all in good fun and I don't bash on anyones beliefs. The songs on the other hand... well thats another story. You know I love filk, all kinds, and I pull out all the stops for this time of the year. You know most of them yourself (Bixyl). would you say any of them bash on religion?" To her question, I answered "No" as I had never known her to do so. "They are downright raunchy," she went on, "but all in good fun."

She continued, "When I started this, there were no other shows like it in Second Life. I was kinda proud of that, the idea I was the first, for at least four years now I have been doing this. A few days ago I found out there is a club hosting it's own version of it. I am thrilled. So please, before you judge, come see for yourself. That is my invitation from me to you."

I told her, "A few of them I've heard on public radio during working hours, 'Twelve Pains of Christmas,' 'Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer.' and one or two others. I recall one of the parodies was done by a Second Life resident, our own Shockwave Yareach." Nydia responded, "Yes, my favorite to be honest, 'Grandma got knocked up by a reindeer.' some are just... well... one of the mid-range songs I play is 'Frosty the Pervert.' And some just... well... you will have to hear to believe." "Sounds like a few would make even a sailor blush," I commented. "I even found a few more for this years event," Nydia informed.


She went on, "To be honest, my first year doing this, I just called it 'A Filky Christmas.' Well, a few who like my DJ style showed up not knowing that filk equals parodies, and left soon after. This set isn't for everyone, and I try and make sure everyone KNOWS this isn't a 'touching, heart warming Christmas special.' these songs get down right NASTY! But they're funny and I like them. And if at anytime you don't feel this event for you, please leave, I am not saying that to be a bitch. I am saying it because I won't be offended if my friends pull out because it is too much for them or they don't agree with it, I understand, truly I do, and it will not hurt my feelings at all. I want those attending, to enjoy themselves."

"BUT.... If you come and start to spot religious views that you feel we need to observe because your 'Offended' or it isn't 'PC,' prepare to be mocked. We all have our own beliefs, I won't force mine on you and ask that I am treated the same. We are all here to enjoy ourselves. If we want to be told how we are all going to burn in hell, we can go to church. I personally believe religious views should only be shared if asked."

I asked where and when the event would be. Nydia told me, "I will be doing it this Thursday at "The Primal Passion Club" from 4 to 6PM. Sadly, this will be one of it's last events. I have learned this from my SL daughter Rayven. She really did a great job setting it up. I was hoping this club would do better. I love the build and style of it."

"So please come and enjoy a twisted Christmas with us. ... I think I may go back to (calling it) that, just to keep misunderstandings like this from happening."

Nydia and I would chat a little longer, and eventually head our separate ways for the day.

So for Thursday December 17, be sure to head to Castle Primal Passions at 4PM SL time to enjoy the "Anti-Christmas" Xmas parodies event by DJ "Naughty Nydia" Tungsten.

Sunweaver Bay (170, 215, 25)

Bixyl Shuftan

Monday, November 30, 2015

Interview With Ichie Kamachi


By Bixyl Shuftan

Of Second Life's live musicians, Ichie Kamachi has made a name for herself in the Grid. Her virtual career included having performed for several years in a number of venues, with her songs covering a number of genres. I recently had a chance to talk with her, and we met at the Newser office.

Bixyl Shuftan: "To begin with, how did you find out about Second Life?"

Ichie Kamachi: "Some friend and I were in another 'world called 'There.' we were all ex-pats from the islands. They had some mutual friends who had a sim here in (Second Life) and convinced them to come over."

Bixyl Shuftan: "How did your first days here go?"

Ichie Kamachi: "(giggle) For the first three months, I almost never left the 'island.' I didn't know how or where. Sometimes someone would TP me to a shop then back home again, so my contact with other citizens was extremely limited."

Bixyl Shuftan: "What island was this and how was virtual life there?"

Ichie Kamachi: "The sim that our friends had. They put up a house for us. We'd have gunfights and sword fights and talk, but that was about it. I don't even remember the name of the sim anymore. It doesnt' exist in SL today."

Bixyl Shuftan: "Gun and sword fights?"

Ichie Kamachi: "Yes, being from Hawaii, most of us were into the Oriental/Japanese things, so we all had samurai swords and kimonos. (The guns were) mostly the freebie guns like the one that shoots watermelons."

Bixyl Shuftan chuckles a bit at the mention of watermellons, "So these were just sword matches rather than any roleplay?"

Ichie Kamachi: "Yes strictly for fun and to try out new toys. We were all still us. we had actually met on a forum for former residents of Hawaii."

Bixyl Shuftan: "That sounds interesting. Have the people on the forum continued to keep in touch here?"

It was then that our interviewee remembered something.

Ichie Kamachi: "(giggles) (I) didn't realize I was still wearing my microphone from my show last night." I chuckled a but and she then took it off, "not much, I think I'm the only one who is still around regularly. I have run into them once or twice in the past 3 or 4 years."

Bixyl Shuftan: "So when did you head off the Island for anything other than shopping?"

Ichie Kamachi: "Well we had a visitor who sort of introduced me to poseballs. (laughter) He had his own sim, so I would visit there and met some other people. Oh, and one of the people who was with the Hawaii group but not from the islands, is still in SL. She is my oldest and dearest SL freind and she started TPing me to clubs and everything. She is autistic and this is her social life, so she is still around."

Bixyl Shuftan grins, " 'sort of' introduced you to dance poseballs?"

Ichie Kamachi: "Well, actually it was a kiss ball (laughter)."

Bixyl Shuftan chuckles

Ichie Kamachi: "I didn't know there were such things (laughter). 'There' didn't have things like dance balls and poseballs."

Bixyl Shuftan chuckles a little more, "Sounds like you had quite a surprise."

Ichie Kamachi: "(laughter) I did! opened a whole new world not only on ways to live SL but what kind of feelings could be invoked with other people."

Bixyl Shuftan: "Sounds like things were quite fun for a while afterwards (grin)."

Ichie Kamachi: "They were. (I) found out i could listen to music, hear dj's, dance. (I) met some awesome people... started a relationship that lasted nearly 2 years and we are still friends today thought he's not in SL much anymore."

Bixyl Shuftan: "Sorry about him not being on ... when did the idea of you singing come to be?"

Ichie Kamachi: "In one of the blues clubs, I met a friend and we'd have long talks, and I found out he was a musician. I told him I sang and he kind of perked up. (He) asked about a bunch of songs then got all excited when I told him I could sing them. He was a guitarist only, so I recorded one song and he would play it and play his guitar over it. He encouraged me to try singing live."

Bixyl Shuftan: "I take it the first event went well."

Ichie Kamachi: "Yes though I was tricked into it. It was at Merry Pranksters and he TPed me to hear him play. (But) when I got there, he said 'you're up next two songs.'(momentary pause) I guess it's tradition, (laughter) so they say."

Bixyl Shuftan chuckles, "Had you been singing long in real life at that point?"

Ichie Kamachi: "I had not. I'd done a lot during high school but had pretty much stopped for maybe twenty-plus years."

Bixyl Shuftan: "So you had only just recently started again?"

Ichie Kamachi: "Not until I started in SL. I still don't perform in real-life, only in the grids."

Bixyl Shuftan: "So what happened after the first sesstion?"

Ichie Kamachi: "People liked it I know, and I don't even remember how I got started doing the clubs and things anymore it's been almost seven and a half years."

Bixyl Shuftan: "About how often were you playing then?"

Ichie Kamachi: "At one point i was going two or three shows seven days a week. (I) burnt out after a couple of years. If it's no fun it's time to stop."It was around this point the interview was interupted by real-life events. So we met later to continue the interview.

Bixyl Shuftan: "We were last talking about how often you were performing."

Ichie Kamachi: "Back then two or three shows a day every day, got burnt out. Now (it is) between two to six times a week. Things are picking up again now."

Bixyl Shuftan: "Do you sing mostly songs you or a friend compose?"

Ichie Kamachi: "No, although I do have a few originals from myself and others i'd say 97% of what I sing are covers. I'm not a great songwriter (laughter)."

Bixyl Shuftan grins, "Which are your favorite songs to sing?"

Ichie Kamachi: "Favorite? .. hmmmm, I think right now blues and Celtic. (It) changes a lot though. Whatever my new one is, it's usually a current favorite."

Bixyl Shuftan: "What have been some of your favorite venues to sing in?"

Ichie Kamachi: "Oh so many for various reasons. A lot of them become like family. Endeavour cove, I've been singng there for more than seven years now. I'm at Shades of Grey twice a week and they've become close to me too, but all my venues I love or I wouldn't be there for long (laughter)."

Bixyl Shuftan: "Seven years (at Endeavour)? That's a while."

Ichie Kamachi: "It is! I've been singing almost seven and a half years now."

Bixyl Shuftan: "How has that location changed over time while you were there?"

Ichie Kamachi: "The majority of it stays the same, but they are always tweaking. They have always had the main stage where I started. Then we moved to the blues club, then the ballroom, and now we're back at the main stage again. During the winter we are on the ice at the ice skating rink."

Bixyl Shuftan: "Singing at an ice rink? Sounds like fun. (smile)"

Ichie Kamachi: "(laughter) (The) first couple of years, they kept asking if I could sing and skate. Now they know be better, and no way (laughter)."

Bixyl Shuftan chuckles, "What have been some of the more noteworthy events you've been in?"

Ichie Kamachi: "I do a bunch of RFL. I love playing for the tinies at Raglan they are always so much fun. Memorial concerts always stick in mind, the sad side of SL I've done Second Life Birthday (events) a few times."

Bixyl Shuftan: "Which Second Life Birthday events were these?"

Ichie Kamachi: "Just over the years they've put out calls for live performers. Sometimes I get an invite, some years no (laughter)."

Bixyl Shuftan: "Heh. ...  Was there an event in which a number of things went hilariously wrong?"

Ichie Kamachi: "Well not a number, and there are always things that don't always go right during my shows. Once though I did a whole hour long show. I was dressed in a pretty white lace dress with a huge bow in the back. near the end of my last song, I started getting these pictures. No one else saw any clothes. Just the bow. No one said anything (before that), they said they didn't want to interrupt (laughter)."

Bixyl Shuftan chuckles, "That would be, different ... heh."

Ichie Kamachi: "(laughter) I've come to take things like that in stride. It's part of SL.

... But there is always something during the warm months, I inhale flies, a lot, the tiny fruit fly variety."

Bixyl Shuftan: "Oops."

Ichie Kamachi: "They make me cough and choke (laughter)."

Bixyl Shuftan: "That can be, inconveintent."

Ichie Kamachi: "It has been. We all just laugh about it now. The fans don't care, makes you more real, something that's hard to get people to remember sometimes."

Bixyl Shuftan: "I take it over time, the fans have had much to say."

Ichie Kamachi: "Some you see once. some for a season and others keep popping in all the time. Everyone has been so good to me. Some are (like) family to me now."

Bixyl Shuftan: "Sounds very nice."

Ichie Kamachi: "Live music fans are very enthusiastic and wonderful with their praise. I am just happy they like it."

Bixyl Shuftan smiles, "So what are your plans for the near future?"

Ichie Kamachi: "Just keep on keeping on. I have found someone who plays guitar and has offered to make soem backings for me. so hopefull I can get some music out for the fans to buy off my website. I'm hoping to do Scarborough Fair soon. It's public domain and my hubby Honor's favorite song."

Bixyl Shuftan: "How did you meet him?"

Ichie Kamachi: "Met him the first time in one of the clubs that Carla and I owned, 'The Classy Tease.' Been together on and off but recently for more than a year. we've always been friends. Now more and we see each other now and then real-life too."

Bixyl Shuftan: "'The Classy Tease?' Interesting name ... oh? You meet in real life as well?"

Ichie Kamachi: "It was an interesting club (laughter) ... Yes we do. He is a good man."

Bixyl Shuftan: "Nice. ... I take it there was a reason for the 'tease' part of the name?"

Ichie Kamachi: "(laughter) Well you've met Carla. It was a, wasn't a strip club, no dancers but nudity, yes. A lot of flirting yes, some hot suggestive music.... usually (smile)."

Bixyl Shuftan: "Sounds like fun."

Ichie Kamachi: "It was, and it was only run part time also, 4 days a week I think."

Bixyl Shuftan: "Sorry you couldn't keep it up more. ... Was there anything else that

you'd like to mention?"

Ichie Kamachi: "Hmmm I don't think so. Just I'm grateful for all the places that let me sing for them. I know it is hard to run a club in SL. a lot of work. AND also to the fans that come whether once or time and time again. A dream come true for me to sing for them."

Bixyl Shuftan "Well, thank you very much for your time. And I wish you well for the future."

Ichie Kamachi: "Thank you Bixyl."

To find where Ichie is playing next, check her groups. You won't have to wait too long before you next get an opportunity to hear this talented singer.

Bixyl Shuftan