“… the process of making a documentary is one of discovery, and like writing a story, you follow a lead and that leads you to something else and then by the time you finish, the story is nothing like you expected.” – William Shatner
… the time line spans six years, the journey certainly magical. A virtual world built to entrance and enthrall, available 24/7. A fantasy life born enabling facets of a personality to emerge from a hidden away place which had always ensured one comply with the social expectations of life. The story seems simple thus far.
Within the pages of my memory are the dizzying heights of mountains climbed with exhilaration and eagerness. The steps upwards filled with laughter and emotional boundaries abandoned for that living in the moment happiness. You know the moment where that little voice in your head tells you “go on” eat the chocolate and worry about the consequence when the jeans don’t fit. After all, we never really believe that the jeans aren’t going to fit!
As is life in a virtual word where everything happens at break neck speed suddenly there is the cliff. Did you jump or were you pushed? The aftermath is usually messy and always emotional; leaving you wondering just how much fantasy and how much reality is invested in your life within this pixel and prim fairyland.
There is the struggles of wanting to have wild abandonment and yet realisation that you have to abide to people’s different boundaries. Cultural differences merge with frustration and lack of understanding whilst annoyance rises when you are pressured with social expectations of people who have been unable to leave judgements at the login screen. Behind the glamour and colour can be found a hidden world of nasty where petty dislike turns to what in reality we call “bullying” and where the game to cause havoc in one’s life is a form of enjoyment for those easily led by stronger personalities. There comes an acceptance that drama happens and is only detrimental if you let it be with that you find the ability to deal with and ignore that which doesn’t fit into your idea of your fairytale and the strength to move onto a new phase of life.
After 6 years of living, exploring and breathing life into my avatar and making PB more than just a “pretty set of pixels” it seems to me that our virtual world should really be called our “emotional” world. For it is our emotions that is the one constant of our experiences.
From the amazement and confusion of our first steps, to the love and caring of friends we spend hours speaking with yet are unlikely to ever meet. There is the acceptance that friendships will be forgotten or betrayed as the fluid nature of the world fades them from your life. There is the element of nothing more than pure inane silliness involved in a lot of SL life, which leaves you sitting at the keyboard laughing till you feel your bladder is going to explode (an example of a night riding big yellow ostrich like birds in ball gowns with two friends whilst being chased by vampires on their clan land comes to mind…everyone does this right?) to those deep moments of seriousness when someone shares something personal and you realize the level of trust you have earned with a stranger.
Each experience has penned its own story in my library of memory. Some books have been bound closed forever where as other stories are shared with a smile or tear. I know that my story is nowhere near complete. There is so much more I want to share, experience and learn within my virtual life.
Miss PB is an extension of me in that she is my outlet for expression. She is the vehicle for exploration and understanding those things which cannot be understood unless experienced. I learn from my adventures and grow via my experiences.
There is a smile on my lips because I feel a new beginning, a new adventure due to start. I’ve got the chocolate biscuits … how about you grab a thermos of coffee and come take a walk with me….into the world of PB.