Monday, 19 October 2015

Secret Life of Walter Mitty (4½ Stars)

To see the world, things dangerous to come to,
To see behind walls, to draw closer,
To find each other and to feel.
That is the purpose of life.

This is the story of a man who likes to live in his dreams, then one day decides to actually do something. When he does he finds that reality is much better than imagination. He should have realised this from the motto of Life magazine, where he worked for 16 years as a negative asset manager. On the other hand, when I was a teenager I wrote a lot of poetry, and in one of my poems I wrote:

"Life is a bore, it's better to dream".

That's interesting. It's so long ago when I wrote these words that I can't remember what was going through my head at the time. I was never as timid as Walter Mitty is in the film. I did do things. I went places, I met people, I dated girls. And yet I was still dissatisfied with life. I expressed my alienation from the world in my poetry. Maybe my life has turned full circle. After I left university I spent many years concentrating on real life. Now that I'm older I've turned back to dreams.

In 2006 I began to play Second Life. That was a very intense experience for me. It was a role-playing experience into which I totally immersed myself. I probably played Second Life intensely for about four years, until the end of 2010. After that the role-playing aspect died down, and Second Life was nothing more than a platform for me to chat with my friends. At first I had a lot of friends, but one by one they left, and there was less incentive for me to log on. I still have an active Second Life account, but I've hardly used it since 2013. It's not that I've given up completely. I might return one day, but I need a reason to do so.

Most Second Life users make a fantasy avatar to express themselves. Men make themselves excessively tall and muscular, while women make themselves look like busty Barbie dolls. Not me. For me Second Life was an attempt for me to hold onto my youth. My SL avatar was as close as possible to my real life appearance when I was 20. Average height, thin, not very muscular, long blond hair.

That's me as I look in Second Life. It's a pretty accurate copy of my appearance when I was younger, the body and the hair at least. I never wore jeans when I was younger. Practically all of my friends wore jeans, and I didn't want to conform, so I wore colourful trousers, red or green. As I got older jeans were no longer in fashion, so I started wearing them more often, and today I wear jeans all the time. I didn't start wearing sandals until I was in my thirties. Only the t-shirt is typical of what I wore at 20.

As you can see, in Second Life I wear a collar to identify me as a slave. But that's a story for another day.....

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