I don’t know how to classify this post. This COULD be classified as another “Ahuva threw herself under a bus”. It could go under “Strong Contender for laughing the most in SL”. Or “My Friends are Wonderful”. “Shopping Do’s and Don’ts”. Of course – it is ALL of those things. I threw myself into the exuberance and energy that is Shenlei Flasheart and laughed for three hours straight.
I’ve never gone Lucky Chair hunting. I belong to a group that sends out Lucky Chair alerts but I’ve never responded. I sat in a Lucky Chair twice at an NCI party. But I’ve always felt somewhat skeptical? scornful? too lazy? to join in the pursuit of a Lucky Chair calling for an “A”. It always seemed like way more effort than it would be worth. Until, that is, I saw Shenlei’s new bubble chairs. The truth is – Shen makes EVERYTHING seem brighter and more exciting and more alive than probably any three other people put together. Certainly I enjoy our serious talks, but when she is in a mood to play, my face hurts from smiling so much. We were hanging out chatting during the Ode Butterfly hunt this month and she mentioned that she’d been staking out a Lucky Chair the previous evening. She’d fallen in love with Chestnut’s chairs (hmmm, so this is really all Ches’ fault!!!) Shen rezzed the prize for me – 6 bubble chairs, each with its own script. They were definitely adorable. And as we sat there on our bubbles chatting, she told me of the madness I had missed in the amassing of this marvel. It began sometime around the time carriages turn back into pumpkins and continued until the wee hours of the morning. She had friends tp’ing in from all over SL, sitting on the Lucky Chairs, in an attempt to get the chairs to call out an S. Shen can be fairly persistent AND forceful. By the time she got to the part where she had a friend come tp’ing in naked, I was already laughing out loud and regretting that I’d missed the party.
Here comes the “under the bus part”. Actually, Shenlei and I differ in our recollection of this discussion. SHE claims that I said that if we staked out these Lucky Chairs and I got a set of bubble chairs, that I would, well, never mind what exactly, because if it comes to pass, I will blog it. (I have a plane ticket standing by so that I can leave the country should it ever come to pass. ) Now *I* say that is NOT how the deal went. *I* insist that I held out for a much more rare and intriguing prize. And Shen did NOT deliver that prize. However…… the terms of this Ladies Agreement are neither here nor there. The result was that we agreed to meet again to stake out the Lucky Chairs and win me a set of bubble chairs!!!!
The other evening the ping came in…. “tonight’s the night…. meet me at Happy Mood and we will make those chairs sing A “. My SL friends know how Lucky Chairs work. But here’s a primer for my RL friends. In order to draw traffic to the store, merchants will have a Lucky Chair in their store that gives away a free gift. Every few minutes the chair will call out a letter. If your first name begins with that letter and you sit in the chair first, you get the prize. If someone sits in the chair and wins the prize, the chair calls another letter. If no one sits in the chair, after a set period of time, the chair will call a different letter. If you try to sit in the chair and you are NOT the correct letter, it kicks you out. Lucky chairs, despite claims to the contrary, are OBVIOUSLY sentient, evil, malicious and and all-around hateful. They KNOW what your letter is and that you WANT their prize and they DON’T CALL YOUR LETTER. These bubble chairs can ONLY be obtained through the Lucky Chairs, you cannot buy them. So you have to hope the chair calls your letter if you want bubble chairs.
First, the lucky chairs in Happy Mood are actually tree stumps. That makes no difference to how it works, but it does explain the picture. Second, there are two lucky stumps. Third, this is one of those things that if you are not doing it, you think, “that’s not so funny” but when you are participating, you get caught up in the frenzy and the hysteria. Think mob psychology. Since I always tell you the truth (okay, not really, but mostly) I will confess that I was EXTREMELY apprehensive about this venture. I don’t have that many people on my friends list. Of course “that many” is relative. Maybe I do. But I don’t think so. And many of them are from work. I was afraid that I would not be able to keep up my end of tp’ing in friends to trigger the stumps. Since these chairs were to be for me, I didn’t want to be imposing on Shenlei’s friends (okay, we share some friends, but I’m willing to bet that her list is much more extensive than mine). But I joined Shen in Happy Mood and the madness began.
We were the only ones in the grove. The chairs were calling D and E. Sounds easy, no? No. As I fumbled through my friends list the D changed to an S! Yay! Shen sat down! And from that point on it got increasingly crazy. We had a run of Zs. Js. W. K. For ‘K’ I brought in a D friend and he brought a K friend. I had both H and C on call waiting. Theoretically Shen and I were positioned RIGHT IN FRONT of the stump. But of course I would be tp’ing in folks for Shen’s tree and she was bringing in folks for mine, and there were more tree stumps that weren’t lucky chairs and there was a lot of lag. Shen and I were calling “come sit on my stump” and people were rezzing in saying “I can’t see anything” and other people were hanging about commenting on the farce. There is actually a lovely store at Happy Mood. I wouldn’t know. I never raised my eyes from the tree stumps and my friends list and my chat boxes. At least 3 of our friends/observers remarked that we could MAKE our own bubble chairs faster than we could win one. Yeah, but that’s no fun. I remember being a little girl at the carnival and wanting my father to win me a stuffed animal. He told me that was a waste of money, that he would buy me one when we got home. And he DID, but it wasn’t the same. (I’m so spoiled now – I have someone in RL who wins me stuffed animals down the shore every summer!!!)
And so we IM’d and pinged and begged and cajoled and pleaded and laughed and laughed and laughed. I talked to people I have not talked to since I friended them. I talked with coworkers and friends. Many of my friends are now wealthier by a set of bubble chairs. We had such a run of Ks and Qs and Xs. Can you believe that we got stuck on B??? Neither of us had a B online. At one point BOTH chairs were looking for a B. And my former friend T – hmmph!!!! Purple pretender!!!!! NEVER came and sat on a stump for me to reset the letter. We had a slow period full of X and K and Z. 7 minutes between letters. Hell had stuck around after winning his set, so he helped amuse us and pass the time. Then we had a run of S. Of course, when Shen was stalking for HER chairs, all SHE got was A. Proof positive that the chairs are malicious. One of the most frustrating moments was when Issa rezzed in for her I, but couldn’t find the right stump (too much lag). By the time she got there, the letter had changed. But of course – now she was hooked. I IM’d to some people that I had to think twice before hitting the send. Only 3 people turned me down, and they were all very, very nice about it (except the purple pretender ). I called some scary people too, and they came as well. Perhaps the scariest call I made, and the one I may regret the most, was my call to my vampire friend. Gulp. I may indeed owe him. eek. But he too was an incredibly good sport and got into the spirit of things. And, of course, walked off with a set of bubble chairs. FINALLY!!!! TWO HOURS into the adventure, an A was called!!! VICTORY!!!!
We were set to head out and shop when we realized that Issa still needed her chairs. So we stayed put and continued tp’ing people in left and right. About 30 minutes after my A, Issa got her I. But by that time M had come in and wanted HER set. So we stayed. Life got crazier and crazier as more people stayed. Lack of sleep is an amazing factor. We had a child av with us also, tripping the chairs each time an E came up. She was truly amazing. She was totally a child – never broke character. One of our friends was wearing some space-age boots. E asked if the friend was a robot. For some reason – that seemed to be the straw that broke the sanity camel’s back. People started changing avs, mutating into more sci-fi shapes or fantasy shapes. I was completely immersed by that point – sure that E was a kid, wondering if I was in a Grade B movie and was going to be captured by the mechanical bug-thing, laughing my head off as the centaur kicked up dust clouds and watching E defend us all w/ a huge hammer. M declared that she was throwing in the towel for the evening – we would have to stalk bubble chairs on her behalf another evening. That was the signal for most of us to realize how late it was, and to head off to other adventures.
I have TWO sets of bubble chairs. I have the most fantastic memories. I had an amazingly fabulous time. Without doubt I have the most wonderful, fun friends a person could have – the cavalry riding to the rescue time after time. And Shenlei – thank you!!!! This may even top the night you rezzed a horse for me and I rode all through Shengri La. As I wrote this post, I laughed and laughed again. Thanks for sharing your joy in life!