Tuesday, May 15, 2012

My Secret Life as a Second Life Blogger

Last week I attended a dinner party hosted by two new friends.  It was fabulous!  We had tasty lychee fruit appetizers accompanied with Prosecco sparkling wine, my personal favourite, along with many other deliciously, decadent foods.  Wine, good food, interesting conversation with the city skyline at night as a backdrop.  Does city life get any better than this?


My new friend has been a food blogger for many years and often hosts dinner parties and "foodie" get togethers for blog fodder.  Naturally, there were some of her other blogger friends  in attendance.  At one point, they got into a fun discussion about blogging, making friends online, and all kinds of other funny things that would only be interesting to other bloggers and internet geeks alike.  It was quite entertaining and I was eager to jump into conversation with my own thoughts on blogging and making connections...but, what did I do instead?  I didn't say a thing, and I could kick myself for it now.


Why, you ask?  Because if I was to identify myself as a fellow blogger, the next step would be "What do you blog about?" which of course would inevitably lead to the dreaded question "Second...what?".  And that is usually followed by confused facial expressions and awkward silence.


[insert crickets sound here]


Maybe I'm just being neurotic, but I've been down that road before and I would rather avoid the weirdness of having to explain Second Life to anyone who doesn't know, and further why I blog about it.  This is particularly unappealing after having just finished off our third bottle of wine and I'm feeling a little tipsy.


It's not that my SLife is a big secret.  I've shared here before about how and why I am transparent about my SL activities with my immediate family and the people in my life that matter.  They know I have this blog which they aren't all that interested in anyways, and honestly, that's fine by me.  But disclosing that outside my close knit circle is not something I feel totally comfortable with.


Is it just me or is there still a stigma attached to Second Life?  Like, we must all be deeply troubled and unhappy in our real lives to resort to socializing in a pretend virtual world on the internet.  Is that what the mass population still generally thinks? And why do I even care what they think?


The truth is, I am not unhappy in my real life.  I have my challenges, but overall I have a busy and fulfilling life, and a happy family.  Life is good, so I'm not really sure why I feel insecure about being more open about this blog, which I have invested so much of my time and creative energy into.


Ah well, this really isn't that big of a deal.  It's not like I attend a lot of dinner parties or am hanging out with pro bloggers every weekend.  It was just something that popped up and it kind of surprised me, that's all. 


Besides, I've been outed before about SL, to good friends, and even though I kept it myself that time, I ended up having the last laugh on that one.


Still, even after three plus years of being around Second Life, you would think it should get easier explaining it to others.  Does it?

8 comments:

  1. I soooo understand what you wrote. I think people consider SLers some kind of oddity. Why on earth would anyone sane spend time in a virtual world going to a make-believe concert instead of going to a real concert?! Well, we can explain it over and over again. We can even explain it doing the headstand. People will look at us thinking that there must something wrong. For the life of me, I cannot figure out why people who don't understand Second Life don't even have the slightest curiosity to see for themselves what a... say concert, is (not to mention the large meriad of other events, and not to mention the building, creating, organising, planning, hosting, playing, etc etc. So, I DO understand your hesitation.Does it get easier? Uhm... It hasn't for me, after 5 years in SL. But, on the other hand, knowing more and more fantastic SLers makes it all worth it! :) Thank you for sharing, Carrie!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, I definitely agree that knowing more fabulous people in SL who are expressing themselves creatively makes it all worth it. Thanks for sharing Lizzie. Your comments make me feel better, in that I am not the only one who feels such hesitation. xoxo

      Delete
  2. I blog about games in general, which includes Second Life, even some gamers tend to have a similar reaction when it comes to SL. But I tell everyone I have a gaming blog, if they don't like the idea then that's their problem not mine, I enjoy what I do!

    I've been in similar situations, I suppose you just have to pick and choose who you want to share it with. I wouldn't sit down telling my mother in-law about it and I don't tell everyone I meet but sometimes it is nice to share what you enjoy doing.

    Gaming in general has had a bad stigma for years and on top of this people that don't understand SL tend to overreact in some cases. We just have to move past it and stand up for things we are passionate, even if they are video games ;) And... sometimes a missed opportunity opens an interesting blog topic!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thanks Kaozz. I agree about picking and choosing who to share with. I don't discuss certain things about my personal life at work, for example and I don't feel the need to have to "out myself" in all my social circles, so to speak. I guess the thing that made me feel a little disappointed in myself that night, was that I'm pretty sure my new friends would have been open enough to listen and try to understand. But because of past experience with having to explain Second Life, I chickened out.

    But it did give me something to blog about it, and I'm glad to know that there are others like yourself who understand what I'm talking about :))

    ReplyDelete
  4. I have this problem ALL the time! I attend a ton of fashion and beauty events for bloggers, but can never say I'm a blogger....because of the inevitable "what's your blog about?" question.

    "My virtual escapes and virtual fashion" just doesn't seem quite..right.

    I've sat through conversations where people wonder why anyone would need a second life..when the first one is so hard - and even I don't have the answer to that. Then they bring up the divorces that second life has been blamed for..and I just gently steer the conversation elsewhere.

    Good luck!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for your comment Blissie. I find it interesting how people find virtual infidelity in Second Life easier to understand, and/or more interesting to discuss than all the music, art and all the other creative things going on. I think it takes very open minded and sensitive people to find all the truly wonderful things that SL has to offer. Knowing that makes me feel a whole lot better about being part of our SL community. :)

      Delete
    2. Haha. Me too! I could tell them about the interesting writers and musicians I've met in SL..but they'd never hear any of it. They'd just question be about Second Life love and sex and yada yada. Morbid curiosity, I guess.

      Delete
  5. I am WAY late to this post but I have to applaud it! I hear you Carrie and echo your sentiments. I have been in SL for 5 years and learned early on that speaking about SL to others just got too many odd looks and glances for me to tolerate. I keep SL to myself and enjoying it with the friends I have made there. I know what SL means to me and that is all that matters.
    -Melanie Ryzyder

    ReplyDelete