Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Second Life

No, I'm not about to launch myself into a virtual existence courtesy of an avatar. Though actually, I'm not about to diss people who do that. Easy, I suppose, to dismiss it all as a hiding place for saddoes who don't have the courage or wherewithal to get a real life. I came out with something glib about it at the weekend and was brought up short by some rather more considered thoughts. For clearly it (Second Life) does give a huge number of people extraordinary pleasure and a place wherein to realise all manner of creative possibilities. True, it is potentially addictive, but many things are that. People who spend a lot of time in SL are not living in the Real World, but neither are people who write novels. And one has relationships with people who are not seen, as it were, in the flesh in blogworld also - and who is to say that these relationships are less real than, say, the friendships that people used to sustain through letter-writing? I was gob-smacked to learn that there is a whole M.E. community in Second Life. Not that I know anything about the more subtle workings of this world (I had this idea that SL was inhabited by superpeople) but if I had an avatar I'd want one without M.E.

I feel I have the possibility of a second life, though, because of our place by the sea. This is either an incredible stroke of good fortune or something that will fragment my already compromised energy even more. At the moment I love the new place so much that I will not consider any negatives, whatever the (include in this financial) cost. I still love Signs Cottage. She is the faithful wife/good mother of the two residences, with an inner beauty that transcends age and the undeniable fact that she is flaky and grows increasingly so. Sea place is the intoxicating new love interest with the perfect proportions, always on my mind - I have never loved a place in this way before. I find myself whispering endearances to the walls. This may, of course, be the first sign of imminent mental disintegration, but what a way to go, enveloped by light.

I and my vitality, though, more closely resemble the flaky cottage. We patch ourselves up and keep going. We make plans, find strategies: most will come to nought but a few may flourish; the writing, in Brighton, is different. I see possibilities.

Going to hear Gillian Clarke reading at Sussex Uni later today.


Cusp said...

Wonder if it's all the toing and froing that is actually wearing you out. Is it not possible to spend longer in Brighton ?

Reading the Signs said...

Cusp, Cat of Signs would become impossibly distressed - I'm not joking! But yes, the toing and froing is (as I know you'll be able to imagine) a bit wearing. We'll have a long break there soon. And others will be staying there over the summer also, enjoying its benefits.

Cusp said...

You know there are people who take their puss cats with them. When my parents had a holiday home a lady three doors along, whose house was also for hols and w/e used to bring her moggie up from London every w/e. Go on get the little blighter a passport :O)

trousers said...

One tends to need to lose/find oneself elsewhere. Sea place sounds just lovely.

Zhoen said...

I have friends who do SL, and it's quite the varied place, apparently. Rather like the blogosphere in general. My laptop just won't support it, so I never wanted to visit.

I love living close to work, but if I could retire to a cottage by the sea, I would give up living close to a city.

Montag said...

Your story is full of mystery. You mention the word "avatar", which immediately connects with the film of that name... and therein is the story ( a story within a story ) of leaving behind one imperfect life and being re-born into another.
Then your domiciles are metaphor for old and new, old life and new life.

It's positively mythological in the most abtruse Norse way! Positively Wagnerian.
(except for the - ahem - cat business...)

Reading the Signs said...

Cusp, the little blighter finds even a two-minute car trip traumatic. Pets are like babies - all different.

Trousers, I think lose/find expresses it perfectly.

Zhoen, I would imagine SL is extremely varied. But just as well, in my particular circumstances, that it doesn't draw me, I don't know how I'd manage to do anything else.

Montag I loved the Avatar (film) story and the idea of incarnating into a strong new body (while still in this incarnation)

Yes, old life and new. And yet Brighton itself, and the flat (a Victorian conversion) full of an old - different - story.

Mim said...

Hail, Flaky and Tangy,

Just think of all those tender flaky things!

And now sea, salt, horizon, etc. Ahoy.