Whether we’re talking skydiving, extreme roller derby, or simply changing our hair colour to one we’d never consider in RL, inworld we have a safe, risk free environment in which we can experiment and push the boundaries to our hearts content, without ever having to worry about the consequences or whether what we’re doing is going to come back and bite us in the bum at some point in the future.
It’s something that I take advantage of frequently… Sometimes it’s by design, often it just happens and I go with the flow. At the moment, that flow seems to be taking me down an unexpected path. To my surprise, I appear to be turning into a goth.
I’m not sure how exactly it’s come about, but I think the original inspiration may have been the unintentional result of combining a particular set of eyelashes with a particular style of makeup – it was just begging for a bit of gothic couture to complement, and before I knew it, I was looking like someone out of an emo band!
It’s not a look that I’d ever consider in RL – I never have been, and almost certainly never will be of that persuasion, I’d feel foolish even attempting it and I can guarantee that, no matter how much effort I made, if wouldn’t look half as good as the virtual version. Besides which, I have absolutely no desire at all to pursue that pathway.
That begs the question, why do it in SL then? And the simple answer is ‘because I can’. There’s no rationale, rhyme or reason behind my current look – it’s the sort of thing that, if I was a teenager, you’d be saying of me ‘it’s just a phase she’s going through… She’ll grow out of it’. Like so many things that typify me in SL, I don’t need a reason and I do as I feel at the time – it makes me happy, and that’s good enough for me.
The truth is that over the past few months, I’ve been a little bit boring compared to how I can be inworld. I’ve dressed fairly conservatively, steered clear of the crazy hairstyles and my SL routine has been, well… Pretty routine, really. However, I can only be normal and predictable for so long, and eventually, after any extended period of this sort, there’s a very good chance that I’m either going to go completely off the rails, or have a brief spell of being a bit different; and being a bit different is rarely anything like the real life me.
In the past, such diversions from normality have seen me become a punk rocker, biker chick, cyberpunk, post apocalyptic grunge girl, Rocky Horror reject, and a whole host of weird, wonderful and way out virtual variations. You wouldn’t find me ever looking anything like these in RL, not even in fancy dress – I don’t have either the confidence or the excuse to do it, and even if I did, I don’t honestly think I’d want to. It’s strictly a Second Life thing for me, and that’s really the only place that I would feel comfortable exploring that facet of my character.
It’s a lot easier in SL too – makeup is a doddle to apply, ‘unusual’ clothes are cheap and readily available – and in the right sizes too – and unlike the real world, people are less likely to be shocked, surprised or critical of how you look.
Maybe I’ll never do gothic in the real world, and that’s probably all for the best, but I’m having fun with it inworld… And isn’t that basically the whole point of SL?
Well I let their teeny minds think
That they’re dealing with someone who is over the brink
And I dress this way just to keep them at bay
Cos Halloween is everyday
Ministry – Everyday Is Halloween