Friday, June 22, 2007

Life begins...

So with all this talk about Second Life during my classes at library school, I thought why not check it out. I mean, I loved playing Adventure on my dad's IBM, where I typed directions in orange text and made my troll character fetch gold bars. I scrawled maps as I made my way through the maze and avoided the wizard. (Alas, my parents split up and my dad took the computer before I could earn my "certificate of wizardness.") After that came D&D and sci-fi conventions with my boyfriend's brother leading the way. We traveled up and down the east coast, staying in hotels and browsing the huckster's rooms. For an impressionable teen this was great stuff - watching large men in chain mail chatting up creatures dressed in fur and bunny ears sipping cherry brandy, fairies and vampires, ghouls and warriors, taking over Sheraton Plaza hotels. This was a complete antidote to my crappy suburban high school experience where the arty and punk rock kids were shunned and shat upon. I could breathe easy among these supposed freaks and geeks at the cons. I was never compelled to role play myself and, later, was turned off by those in the Excalibur Club at college who used to run through campus towards the dining hall wearing capes and drawing swords.

After college, in the early 90s, I lived next door to a guy who never came out of his apartment. He was gray-faced from indoor living, surrounded by computer monitors, and babbled endlessly about the end of the pen and pencil. He gave me an old apple mac and introduced me to Myst. He gave me copies of dreamweaver and macromedia and other top secret programs that sent sreaming skulls at me when I downloaded them to my harddrive. He spent all day long inventing a virtual museum, which I never cubes floated about in the universe of his computer monitor, turning slowly about. I could see the potential but it was never realized during our friendship. He must have gotten somewhere because now, years later, we have Second Life.

And so, yesterday, armed with an unsteady understanding of all things virtual, and without my certificate of wizardness, I began my life as Siri Woodget.