5 Jun 2020

On Second Life…..and Death

(picture taken after 100th Show by PB Recreant)

On June 28th at 12 NOON SL time You are invited to the SpinDome for 
The Guru Edition Of The 1st Question!
Tribute to Paradox Olbers

On the Panel:
Troy McLuhan. Korii Tiger and Jimbo Perhaps
PLUS our special Guest panelist

The show will be streamed Live Too, so can watch from the web!
(Watch this space for updates and links)

The Quiz Show To The Stars! If You have an Answer, We have a Question!

Once Upon A Time in a land both far away and in the next room, begins a journey that would take me into the future, Once Upon A time that was in 2008, clearly 12 years ago. And I entered this strange land where water isn’t wet, where I could fly, where I could change the time of day or landscape with a click of a mouse, yet unsure about things like how to sit to learn something.  I had entered the world of Second Life for a marketing conference but by the end of the three day event  had met some people who would go on to change my life forever. None of us are who we are without the people we meet in our lifetimes. Here I met people from all over the world and all over the country, on a 19 inch screen, which through its 360 degree view, extends for virtual miles...

Memory works like a small film, and we can “roll” that film before our minds eye by pressing play on that moment. If I have a visual of what is going on, a scene from a film as well as real life, I can replay that. 

My memory of the day I met Paradox Olbers runs like that too. There he was standing outside the large virtual conference auditorium with some other people I had seen texting and whom I interacted with. Arthur C. Clarke had just died and we both spoke of being affected by his writings and sad he was gone. He was standing with his tie Dye shirt on, blue jeans, greying ponytail and a smile. He asked me if I wanted to see something cool, and I said yes, so he disappeared in a cloud of orange smoke and soon a prompt to take a teleport to him appeared on my screen. And with an instinctual trust, I took it.

Then we were in a large dome shaped building, and a large man creature elf was playing the most illusory sounds with electronics and flutes, that was how I was introduced to Cypress Rosewood. We sit and watch and Paradox messages me (IM) “I wish I could get more people in here’ having just come from 5 years on another virtual platform albeit a 2.5D one where I regularly staged productions I texted back….”Well, I have an idea….” and put forth the concept of a weekly show, a science/tech quiz show which would celebrate smarts and make rock stars out of scientists. Paradox loved this, and with only knowing me for less than a week said yes, and the weekly edition of The 1st Question was born. 

Paradox had helped set up the region known as The Scilands in Second Life which would be a protected place for educators, scientists and science related places. It had no sex, no gambling and no real stores. It was a safe space where universities and government agencies could set up shop, and they did so in great numbers. Businesses such as IBM followed too. Paradox, and the others who did this, helped establish Second Life as a great place and resource for those of us who think. Intelligence of the human mind, curiosity and mental challenge are all things we can embrace, and moving forward I hope the pendulum will swing back to a celebration of smarts and the sacredness fo thought. Hearing of his passing only recently, I must make the steps back to Second Life to remember and embrace Paradox’s memory here. Second Life also gives Second Death, no less a loss for those who remain.

We remember our heroes - the people who gave us a chance, who understood us, who touched our hearts and minds with songs, words or solace. We all have our Personal Hall of Fame, those who walked with us down any time period path in our lives, holding our hands figuratively if not literally. We do not live in easy times, we live in times where we must honor those who have stepped forward to guide us , so we may step into those shoes too and guide others. Paradox was my Guru because he had a vision of a better and smarter world, and strove to make that a reality. And while the physical limitations of anyone's life can prevent much, Second Life allowed Paradox a freedom to be who he was, to build and look at what he wanted and even more to craft together an area which would focus on some of humanity’s greatest achievements. And then he helped me and so many others get to where we needed to be, in our lives, no matter if the platform is based on earthly gravity or virtual reality where gravity doesn't really exist. 

And the memory of meeting him, of our cherished moments together are in my mind's eye and will be, until I leave this mortal platform which has launched us all. I am forever in his debt, he is forever in my heart. Whether I met Paradox Olbers in Second Life or Spike MacPhee in Boston, he was the same human being inside, and the tesseract of Second Life which bridges distance in the snap of a log in, made it possible for me to find a real friend, mentor and yes Guru. And because we live in times where we must embrace our heroes, the news of his passing made me realize I had to do something for him.

Please join us, wear tie dye and have a ton of fun!

And here for the record is the Interview Paradox granted me so early in my Second Life.

Great people make an impression on one’s life, and thank you Paradox for being par tof mine!

See you in Spindrift on the 28th! Wear tie dye if you will too!

With Love-