13 June 2010


Shall Earth no more inspire thee,

Thou lonely dreamer now?
--Emily Bronte

I was compiling a list of places to visit to continue this blog, but with all the changes happening within SL now, and the feeling of uncertainty that seems to surround everything, I'm just not sure I have the heart. It's just too hard to write about places that nurture a temporary bad mood when one no longer feels the happiness that makes that mood temporary. I mean, a year from now will SL even exist?

I'm not feeling inspired to do much of anything in SL at the moment; maybe this feeling is just temporary, I suppose time will tell. Maybe I need a break.

16 June 2008

Dark, Lonely Beauty: Devils Moon

I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched C-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhauser gate. All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain. Time to die. --Roy Batty, from Blade Runner

Ever had one of those days where you're feeling lonely and nothing will help-- shopping and exploring just seem to be useless, hollow activities, the clubs are all empty, and none of your friends are online? If you want to wander around disconsolately in a setting that's perfectly suited to that feeling of lingering melancholy, the sky city at Devils Moon is the perfect place.

The design of the city is amazing: beautifully dark and cyberpunky, highly detailed, very true to its Blade Runner theme. The wet, empty streets are littered with crates and empty cardboard boxes and lit by the multicolored glare of neon; advertising drones repeat their endless, impersonal messages, and on the horizon all that can be seen are rows and rows of towering skyscrapers. Their lit windows are clustered pinpoints of warm light in the distance, reminding you of all the people who are out there-- but not here with you. Even when there are other people wandering around, this place evokes a certain sense of isolation. It's like a movie set-- a scene from a slightly run-down and dingy future, one that didn't turn out as happily as hoped.

It’s a great place to hang out if you want some interesting scenery but aren’t ready to be cheered up just yet. If you don't feel up to browsing in the shops, you can ask for advice from A.L.I.C.E., the Artificial Linguistic Internet Computer Entity, see what’s playing in the movie theater, sit in the bar or the sidewalk diner and listen to the music, or just wander the dark streets and take a few photos. Just don't be surprised if those simple acts finally shake you out of your blue mood; Devils Moon is that sort of place, too.

13 March 2008

Gone but not forgotten: Cotton's Dystopia

Dystopia: An imaginary place or state in which
the condition of life is extremely bad,

as from deprivation, oppression, or terror.

-American Heritage Dictionary

I was planning on writing about this place at some point, but not in this way. I just found out today through the Second Life Art News blog that Cotton's Dystopia (formerly in Moneta) was recently deleted. Had to happen at some point, I suppose, since Cottonteil is gone from SL, but it's still sad; it was a brilliant, beautiful, surreal build.

Cotton's Dystopia was a perfect brooding place. It was made up of huge monoliths of old concrete surrounded by water; it seemed to be an abandoned construction site, but I never could tell what was being built. Random windows and jagged edges broke the stark lines of the concrete slabs, a long-unused crane loomed overhead, and rusted beams and pieces of fencing stuck out here and there. In the middle of it all was a small patch of grass, with a few young trees; the last time I was there, glass globe lamps and intricately-constructed power tools were hanging from the branches. At various times, statues, musical instruments, stacks of shipping pallets and old rusted signs appeared; eventually they would disappear again, just as mysteriously. It was a beautiful place, in a bleak and melancholy way; I always found myself wondering why the construction crew abandoned it and what sort of building it was meant to have been.

Lessons learned: take lots of pictures of places you enjoy, because nothing in SL is certain. Explore a lot, and share the good places with friends. I'm glad I saw this place while I could. Thanks to Cottonteil, wherever she is now, for building it, and to those who helped preserve it after her departure. It'll be missed.

So what's this all about?

No coward soul is mine,
No trembler in the world's storm-troubled sphere...
-Emily Bronte

This blog is meant to fill a need that hasn't been addressed yet, as far as I'm aware. There are plenty of Second Life blogs and lists that explain where to go to see beautiful scenery or outstanding architecture, where to go for fun and adventure-- but what if none of that is what you want? Where do you go if you're feeling depressed or angry, or just want to spend some time brooding or sulking in an appropriate-looking location?

That's why I started this blog: to list places I've found that are perfect settings for strolling around aimlessly and brooding, sitting in an out-of-the-way spot and sulking angrily, or just staring absently at the bleak scenery and feeling lonely. If you're not ready to cheer up yet, if you'd prefer to feed that bad mood a bit longer, this blog is for you. I'll be adding entries and pictures as time allows, so stay tuned.