Monday Night Football

Sometimes I don’t think people believe me when I tell them about the random coincidences and events that shape my Second Life. Take last week for example. I was discovering and experimenting with breedable butterflies right? There was a guy who asked in group chat if there were any new breeders. I answered, and he gave me a butterfly just out of the blue. A very generous offer that I appreciated, but I didn’t think too much of it at the time as Kismet told me some of the bigger players in the breedables game often do this for newbies.

So Sunday I’m touring around various markets and stores that sell butterflies and supplies and I start up a chat with a nice lady who was setting up more flutters when all of a sudden this guy teleports in. Immediately I laughed “You’re the guy! The one who gave me the flutter”. So we all got to talking, I guess she had seen me at the auction the day before, and they offered to answer any of my questions and help me find what I needed for breeding stock for my garden. That’s when I, of course, perved their profiles.

His had picks for the SFL, Second Life Football League, which is a strange coincidence because one of the suggestions that was made to me when I started this project was to explore SL sports leagues. I had to confess that I had snooped him and ask him about why he had SFL in his picks. He told me he used to be a game announcer and was now a player. He mentioned that they actually had a game coming up the next night, Monday night. Now what are the odds I’d stumble on people from one of part of my todo list who would lead me onto another item for my project?

He gave me a link to buy tickets to the game… I know what you’re thinking, buy tickets? I did the same. I even made bit of a squidgy face because I’m trying to do this project only surviving on my premium account stipend and the 200L cost of the ticket would eat up over half of my weekly budget. Sometimes you just have to roll with it though right? I mean, it costs less than a (cheap) cup of coffee and I figured it would be hilarious. So, I bought the ticket and went.

It was funny, I spent a good part of the evening laughing, but honestly it was considerably more professional and better organized than I ever expected. Not only is the stadium well made, the uniforms are great, they have every detail accounted for from team owners to uniforms to referees but it seems the system that runs this is pretty sophisticated as well. They even had announcers live on the stream.

I did spend a good part of it just amused by the whole idea, and then trying to figure out how the system worked from a technical perspective, but soon I found myself genuinely involved in watching the game unfold, just as I would watching any sporting event. At half time each team’s cheerleaders even did routines. Once again, I was surprisingly impressed. Sure they were coordinated animations, but it was obvious that a lot of time went into selecting and organizing those to perfectly match the song they chose to look like a real choreographed cheerleader routine. After each was done I applauded, for real. The cheer captains put a lot of work into those shows and I enjoyed that addition to the game atmosphere.

It took a little while for me to figure out where to put my camera and what to watch, sometimes the play would take off and I found myself missing the whole thing. It sure gave me a whole new appreciation for those camera people in RL who film footballs games. Although I knew an aerial view would give me the best vantage point for following the plays, I admit I was having too much fun using my camera and lining myself up on the line of scrimmage and really getting the feel of being there.

I took about a thousand pictures to my desktop, but most turned out as close ups of a foot, or a butt, or people just standing after the play was over. It was fairly difficult to follow the play and snap an action picture but I’m really happy with this mid tackle shot I got. The ball glows for some reason. It could just be me though.

It was definitely an evening well spent. I’m so glad I met Miguel and Kyrene or I might never have gotten around to looking into the SFL. Will I go to another game? I’m pretty sure I will, not all the time as the price of the tickets is an issue for someone on a tight budget like me, but I do think it’s money well spent when I want to treat myself and I don’t begrudge them charging because the cost of running this must be considerable. I understand they have a superbowl which I can imagine will be a great time so I’ll have to find out when that is an get my tickets early.

I think the games would be even more enjoyable if you followed the season regularly and got involved in some friendly inter team rivalry or developed a favorite. I am definitely going to recommend the SFL as either a fun night or or a great hobby in SL for those who would be interested. Who knows, even becoming an announcer, or ref, or cheerleader! I also plan to look into some of the other SL sports leagues like soccer and hockey.

You can purchase your SFL tickets for the upcoming games on the marketplace.

You’ll get a landmark to the stadium seating as well as a ticket that you must wear to watch the game.


Next up on my adventures? Well my list seems to be getting longer not shorter, but I definitely think I have to explore the upcoming BURN2 festival.  You can see the schedule of events and promo video on Daniel’s Blog.

Or you can check out the BURN2 site

Papillon Adventures

As I mentioned in the last post, I had my first butterfly baby and it was born with rainbow wings, a rare mutation that could prove to be valuable.  In the days following, I spent most of my SL time learning more about these breedables and the traits and my little colony exploded to now a dozen!

As with any of the breedable pets, you are hoping to breed something that is either rare, valuable, or something that you enjoy collecting.  The papillon breedables have so many combinations of traits it can’t ever getting boring.  First is size and color, which are straight forward enough, and then there is wing type and class.  There are also mutations, which aren’t passed down genetically; they happen randomly though it seems you get better odds of having a mutation if you breed sibling pairs.

With over a dozen of these butterflies now I ran out of prim space on my land and a few of the ones that were born weren’t anything special or didn’t enhance my collection.  The creator thought of this though and provided a conversion system.  It’s like a credit card that you rez then click on your butterfly and “convert” it to points on the card.  The butterfly still exists in world, you can keep it as decorative toy or pick it up and store it in your inventory, but now you have points on the card you can trade in for gifts.  I don’t have enough points for gifts yet, but Kissie does and she traded in her points for butterfly avatars.  She got a few duplicates so she gave me one.

Check it out, this is me!

These flutters also come in classes like worker and princess, all of which do certain jobs in your garden.  Some increase social or health stats which makes them happier so they breed more, others tend to the plants so that the food lasts longer.  I’ve learned the plants and accessories play a big part too.  In fact, the whole concept is really a little eco system.  You get plants to feed the butterflies, the butterflies tend to them, and then you can add treats like sugar.  In addition to the butterflies, you can also breedable wisps and fireflies in the same interactive environment.  It’s a little confusing at first but you don’t need to understand it all to get started, and there is a good website that can be used as a reference.

 So if all of that wasn’t enough, these papillon butterflies come with an adventure hud game as well.  It’s included in the FREE pack of huds you can get at the main store, right next to the starter packs.  What is the adventure hud? Well, think Breedables meets Tiny Empires meets Farmville.  I know right?  And you wondered why I haven’t left my sky box all week!  They don’t actually go anywhere, you just wear the hud, click the flutter and then it starts telling you in chat about the adventures it is having.

 {Papillon} Adventure HUD: Log> Kissie begins an adventure!

{Papillon} Adventure HUD: Log> Kissie was ambushed by a lost wild dog! (8/6)

{Papillon} Adventure HUD: Log> Kissie managed to fend them off!

 {Papillon} Adventure HUD: Log> Kissie earned 298 XP and found 24 trinkets to sell.

 {Papillon} Adventure HUD: Log> Kissie was hunted by a grim skeleton! (11/9)

 {Papillon} Adventure HUD: Log> Kissie somehow managed to scare them away!

 {Papillon} Adventure HUD: Log> Kissie earned 501 XP and found 37 trinkets to sell.

It’s hilarious for me because I named by flutters after people I know.

{Papillon} Adventure HUD: Log> Ornias begins an adventure!

{Papillon} Adventure HUD: Log> Ornias stumbled across a perverted traveller, but didn’t have any baubles to sell!

Of course, Ornias WOULD stumble across a perverted traveller.

As it gains trinkets and gold you can use the hud to buy things for it, armor, weapons, accessories.  It doesn’t affect the butterfly in world, it doesn’t actually wear anything, but in the adventure game this increases it’s chances of surviving attacks and increasing in ranks.  I’m having WAY too much fun with this and I’m already on level 15.  Apparently a new version of the hud game is in the works and I can’t wait to see it.

 Somehow the week turned into Saturday and I realize that Oops, I haven’t left my skybox again.

The part from about 3:25 to 3:45 is just an amazing addition!  I suppose you could say it’s sort of my personal theme song.  What?  I’m not THAT innocent.

 As much fun as I was having wearing my butterfly avatar, choosing flutters to mate, seeing what babies I could create, and with the adventure game hud I knew that I was in danger of never getting to any of the other items in my SL bucket list or meeting any new people.  Just as I changed into real clothes and opened the search the group chat for the Papillon Traders opened up and announced that an auction was about to begin.  Talk about good timing! 

 I’d been to an auction for horses long ago, but I was there supporting Kissie, not really to buy anything for myself so this auction was a lot more fun.  I really enjoyed following the chatter, seeing all the other collectors, and listening to the auctioneer on voice.  It was too much fun, I was grinning for an hour, I even bid twice! Thank goodness someone outbid me because I can’t really afford to be buying more of these right now and I wasn’t even sure what I was doing, I just got caught up in the moment.  It was also interesting to learn what the market for these is like.  One butterfly with three mutated rare traits sold for 2300L.  That wasn’t a typical price, nor a butterfly you’d be able to produce easily or often, but still if I can manage to breed one of those it might make a nice little bonus side income.  After the auction was over I wandered some of the stalls and booths to see what was for sale and the prices of those.  I was surprised to see there are a lot more breedable pets than I realize, everything from meeros to cats.  I ended up finding a butterfly cocoon for only 75L that had some traits I don’t yet have in my collection so I bought it for breeding stock.

As I wrap up my exploration of the breedable pets subculture in Second Life I have to say I do finally see the appeal.  It is fun to try to collect rare ones, to chose pairs to mate, the excitement of waiting for a new baby to be born and of course the allure of making money off this.  I do recommend joining some of the many groups about breedables, especially for the pet you chose, otherwise you might find it a fairly solitary activity.  The papillon breedables group was extremely helpful the few times I asked stupid newbie questions, and the creator herself was quick to answer questions when I had a problem with one of them.  If you are going to get involved in the breedable pets market I do suggest the Papillon because it’s very reasonable to get started, you can get a starter pack of two butterflies and enough food to last them a couple weeks for under 300L.  There are also fairly low prim compared to some others and the maintenance costs seem to be considerably lower in the long run if you develop a garden for them.  The ability to convert the ones you don’t want into gifts and the adventure game hud are great perks. 

I couldn’t have done this without Kissie.  It’s not about her giving me a couple starters or the avatar, not about answering my panicked questions, it’s because she’s a better friend to me than I’ve ever been to her.  I don’t know what I did to deserve, strike that, I know I’ve never done anything to deserve her friendship but I am grateful.  Kissie is one of those people in my SL that’s just … well… normal.  There is a significant age difference between us, I should in theory play the big sister role but it doesn’t tend to work out that way.  Kissie is probably the most mature person on the entire internet.  Over the years we’ve been friends I’ve been honored that she trusts me enough to share some the things that have been happening in her RL.  I’ve watched this young woman grow and come into her own and finally be on the path to attain all the things she’s wanted and worked so hard to achieve.  Congratulations Kiss, you deserve all of it and so much more.

 Papillon Breedables Main Store

 The Breeders’ Borough Auction House and Market

 /me reaches into her bucket list “So… where to next?”

A Ball

I logged in to discover two new butterfly pods in my skybox tonight.  I had babies!  It was pretty exciting really to click them and watch them come out, I even got one… well that’s going to have to wait.  I do plan to write about my babies, I even dressed up to match them and then I wanted to find a place to take pictures so I searched for the word Butterfly.  As I went through the list one caught my eye.  Pteron.

This is one of those times where I wish I was a better writer.  There is no way I can adequately describe this sim or how it made me feel.  Also one of those times where I wish I was a better photographer.  I’ll share my first glimpse of Pteron though.

I don’t know what it is, or what it’s for, but it’s breathtaking.  Whether you are a builder who can be awed by the craftsmanship or an artist who likes to do photography or machinima, or just a plain jane like me who stands there with her mouth open taking in the surreal beauty of this place, you must visit.

There are so many rooms and hidden corners, I’m sure I didn’t get to them all.  There are places to relax, places to dance, places to take it all in.  As I toured around I ended up in one building that looked like a boardroom.  Inside was an object labelled AtomOrb.  I hadn’t yet seen anything else labelled so I clicked on it and it gave me something called “To dazzling Human – Open”.  Well I had to of course right?  Inside was a shape, and an AO, and something called a body crusher.  I guessed it must be an avatar so I put it on. 

It turned me into a ball.  No really.  A silver ball.  I had to send a few IMs saying “I’m a ball!” to which the reaction was pretty much “Ok?”.  I guess you had to be there. 

I spent the rest of my time touring Pteron as a ball and I realized it was probably meant to explore in this fashion.  Then I fell in the water and much to my delight discovered that it’s not only gorgeous above the surface.

The silver ball in the middle there is me.  I don’t know if it was the wine, or the sounds, but something about hovering with the jellyfish dancing around me was positively surreal.  I confess I’m still not sure what this is, or what it’s for.  I guess it just is and sometimes that’s good enough you know?

I’d love to roleplay here.  I’m not sure as what, or what genre, but everything about Pteron makes me feel creative.  A mermaid perhaps.  If I ever get a mermaid avatar I’m coming here.  Too often we think of roleplay as a place but it isn’t, it never was before Second Life and there is no reason we need to make it so now.  All it takes is inspiration and someone to write the story.

The only thing that bothered me was that my pictures didn’t do it justice.  I did a bit of googling (that’s a verb now right?)  and you can find many pictures better than mine quite easily.  Apparently Pteron has been around for quite some time, it’s just new to me.  There are also a few videos.

I’m certain I’ll be back to explore further or even just to have one of those quiet meditative evenings.

I also think you’ll be seeing the ball avatar again as well. I’m enjoying this shape.  I can’t explain why, you just need to go get one and experience it for yourself.


Breedables, Butterflies and a Chair

Another of the suggestions I was given to rediscover SL was to get involved in the Breedable pets program. I actually owned a few bunnies for a while some time ago, just after the bunny market collapsed and the horses were in their hay day (ha! See what I did there?) I was given a few bunnies as pets and I named them after my friends and paired them up to make babies which was amusing to me. Very quickly though it became apparent that the maintenance costs were going to kill me and I didn’t have enough prims to keep very many so I picked them up and they’ve been sleeping in my inventory ever since.

I did during that time attend a few horse auctions with my friend Kissie and when I watched the kind of money she was making I was very tempted to get a piece of that action for myself. When you hear stories of these breedables going for upwards of $10,000L a pop it’s hard not to get excited. What I learned from her though is she wasn’t sitting flush in SL. The cost of food, acquiring new breeding stock with the desirable traits, and paying for land to have enough prims to house them cuts out most of your profits. It’s also a lot of luck. Like the stock market in a way. If you hit the market just right, manage to breed something that has the traits that are hot at the moment you are golden. If you are a couple weeks late and the bubble has burst you are stuck with inventory you can’t offload. The allure of making money is there though, and it’s powerful, but it’s a lot like a lotto ticket from what I can tell.

Still, there is a certain appeal in collecting them, trying to breed qualities that you like and there is a whole community or subculture of sorts around these breedables so it’s a good way to meet people. Kissie has every kind of breedable there is and for this project she gave me a few butterfly pods of various types to get me started. I don’t know about you, but… they look like condoms to me. Or mythical manure.

So I dropped them down and clicked on them to get them started and out popped the butterfly babies. I had a moment, more than a moment, of panic while I while furiously typing away at her. “What do I do! What if they fly away!” She calmed me down and we got them sorted. She gave me a plant which is what they eat I guess and one of the butterflies is a “worker” which means it tends the plant, or something like that. This isn’t easy stuff! I have a folder full of notecards I need to read now to figure the difference between the priests and a worker, the different wing types, the different mutations. I don’t even know if I have good ones or not. It’s going to take about three days for them to start making babies so I’ll keep you posted.

I have this song stuck in my head now though.

Oh come on, you saw that coming!

Since I had time to kill waiting for the babies and it’s the weekend I thought I’d check out some of the sales. You know, 50L Friday, Project Theomery, Sunday 69 (what?  it’s a thing!)  there are so many. I usually read the SL Circadian to see what’s happening. Today’s Super Bargain Saturday post pictured a patchwork armchair at Sway’s that I had to have.

These sales are not only a great way to save money but you can discover a lot of new stores. I prefer to shop in world over the marketplace because I like to see the way the creators set up their merchandise. A lot of them have really amazing sims with fun things to do and discover. Sway’s is no exception. I could spend all day exploring there. I noticed they had a little art studio vignette set up, and apparently they were expecting me.

After playing with some animated teddy bears and lounging in a martini glass I found the Darling Patchwork chair. It was only 5 prims, 7 sits, and 60L. Score. The prims were the biggest factor for me. I got a premium account a couple of months back and bought myself my first ever little piece of mainland. It only cost me a couple hundred $L for a 512 and I can live tier free, the problem of course is the miniscule prim allowance. As it was I had to pick up a few things for my butterflies. So after a few moments of mental math… butterflies are 7 prim each which leaves me this much remaining, carry the one and YES! I have room for the chair.

You know, though I appreciate the new perks of premium living and plan to check out the premium only sandboxes, I’d really like a bigger starting land allowance. Heck, charge me an extra dollar a month and double my allotment. I’d buy more mainland, I’d buy more things for my home, the merchants would make more money… see how that works?

Rod, babe, have your people call my people. Or better yet, come over for a chat.  I’ll let you sit in the big chair.

So yes I’m back in my skybox again but it feels different. Maybe it’s the butterflies, maybe it’s the chair, but I’m guessing it’s just about perspective.


The SL Circadian

Papillon Breedables

What The Hell

The other day I read a post on a forum that was advertising for roleplayers for Midian.  Although I was only going to observe and have a chat with the people who posted the ads I still had to dress the part.  Not only is it considered proper etiquette to try to blend in when observing a roleplay sim but it’s a big part of getting the vibe for me.  My most successful characters were those I could really feel.  Roleplay is a gut thing for me.  Left brain, right brain, pshaw.  My creativity lives in my core.  A new sim, a new character, required a makeover even just to observe. 

I wasn’t about to spend a lot of money since I didn’t even know what I wanted to play yet so I ransaked my inventory for my go to comfy jeans, Mon Tissu of course.  I put on the new group gift skin from Al Vulo that I hadn’t tried on yet because I find it really helps me create a new character if I have a new skin. I’m strange, I know. Then I started randomly tossing on styles from my big Folder-O-Hair.

As I stood in the skybox arrival area above Midian I sent her an IM.  “I have to go home and change.  I accidentally look like Avril Lavigne and it’s freaking me out”.

She laughed and told me to come down anyway so I did. Then she saw me “OMG you do!”  Well, we couldn’t stop laughing.  She even had her partner cam on me to have a look and he got silly making up alternative lyrics to Skaterboi.  I don’t know if I could have made a better look-alike avie if I had been trying.  I was channeling this video all night.

If you’ve been around the RP circuit in SL for any length of time you’ve probably played in Midian or at least visited.  Midian has had it’s ups and downs over the years and most recently a significant down where some actually though it might close completely.  A group of dedicated members kept it going though and now are trying to breathe new life into it.  The rules were updated in August and the sim is moving towards a more dystopian feel and the story picks up 5 years after the riots destroyed much of what we knew to be Midian.  The roleplay story centers around rebuilding and a shortage of supplies but the main sim build itself remains pretty much how I remember it when I used to play there last year.

It actually felt good to walk around Midian again, like being home in a way. I had some good times there in the past. It was a lot less busy than I remember but that can be a good thing sometimes. One complaint I occasionally heard in the past about Midian was that it was cliquish or exclusive, that it was difficult to break in a new character, but that’s often the comment about busy or popular sims. However, now that it’s less busy and going through its own rebirth of sorts it’s a great time to drop in a new character.

I received several friendly IMs asking if I needed help or had any questions and offering to help me come up with a backstory. There is a good vibe there, an energetic one. I think the new story of the group of survivors cleaning up after riots and bartering for what’s left of supplies will really bring the community of players together and will very naturally create roleplay opportunities.

It was a good night. I haven’t laughed that hard in ages and I had fun taking pictures. I’m by no means an SL photographer and photoediting is another new thing I’m learning as we go here. I have a few ideas floating around in my head of characters I could try in Midian but I think it’s too soon for me to commit to anywhere. It wouldn’t be fair to them or to me. No, no I think I’m going to wish them a lot of luck but keep on this journey I’ve started. I’m excited by the idea of this Renoobed project and I have a long list of things to do yet.

Midian City

Al Vulo

Mon Tissu

Next on my list of things to discover, breedable pets.


I’ve had a couple of blogs over the years and I gotta say, the first post is the hardest.  I have the next post already written and three more drafted in my head but dammed if I can figure out what to write here. 

It feels like I should introduce myself but even that is more complicated than it sounds. I signed up for Second Life over four years ago on an avatar long buried in the land of forgotten pixels. I’ve since created a few others for several reasons, mostly for roleplay characters. You see; I’m a roleplayer, or at least I was. Now I’m a character without a role, a writer without a story to tell.

For a variety of reasons I find myself in a funk. I don’t want to blame the places I’m playing or the people I’m writing with because I know the problem is me. I just can’t figure out the specifics of what that problem actually is. I’ve been playing primarily in Gor for the last few years so it’s possible that I’m burned out on the genre, it’s not uncommon. It could be that my primary character seems to have lived longer and experienced more than she should have and she feels old to me, tired. I’ve been tossing around the idea of rolling a character in another genre but I keep drawing a blank. Don’t get me wrong, there are dozens of great roleplay sims in Second Life, I just can’t think of a character I want to play.

I was tempted to just quit Second Life and if you’ve been around any length of time you’ve probably gone through this as well. Somedays I think the retention factor of Second Life is habit, or that big scary A word that I don’t really want to think about. You log in, you change clothes, IM a few people, realize two hours have passed and you haven’t left your skybox. Some days I’m logged in but tabbed out surfing forums or youtube. I know this isn’t just me. So… how do we fix it? How do we rediscover Second Life? How do we reinvent ourselves in this medium?

This is particularly difficult for me because I’ve spent the vast majority of the past few years as a character in roleplay sims. I think I know a total of two people who aren’t roleplayers. Roleplay isn’t what I do, it’s what I am, it’s the community I belong to. Without it, without them, I honestly don’t know what to do with myself. I don’t even know what I’m doing here. I’m certain it’s compounded by the fact that my best friend two years, my SL partner in crime and fellow story teller isn’t around much anymore.  When I started I used to do other things, lots of things, but once I was bit with the roleplay bug I never went back.  I only left roleplay sims to shop and had long periods where I didn’t even have an off sim home.

So I asked for advice on one of the many forums I belong to and was thrilled to get quite a few responses. Some suggested I try building, or learn to DJ, while others mentioned live music. A few people suggested buying breedables, or checking out the sailing scene, or becoming involved in some of the SL sports leagues. They all sound interesting, but the one that caught my eye was from an old friend actually, a fellow roleplayer. He suggested I blog.

It’s not as if SL needs another blog right?  A lot of people do it and do it better than I ever will, but his idea had appeal to me for two reasons. First, I do like to write I’m just struggling lately creatively so this will force me to get past my writers block. Second, if I blog about the other ideas people suggested then that will give me a reason to get out of my skybox and actually go try those things. It also gives me a place to write about the Roleplay sims I explore as I try to find a new genre and new character. The worst that can happen is that I lose interest and fade away, but that was already happening so it’s worth a shot.

I want to rediscover the excitement and awe I had about all things Second Life when I was a noobie. I want to renew my creativity and enthusiasm because I need for my Second Life to be more than a habit.

I’m calling this process… Renoobed.