Lost my connection to the REAL World

Sunday afternoon, June 29, 2008

Oh my heavens. This has spiraled completely out of control. It’s not even 72 hours and it has taken over my life. I was supposed to meet a friend for brunch at 11. I’m talking a RL friend. It takes a minimum of 45 minutes to get there. I logon to SL at 9am, no problem, I have an hour, I figure I can clean up my folders, maybe go get my free daily stipend. My husband cruises by at some point and asks about brunch. Yeah, yeah, I say abstractedly, I don’t have to leave til 10. Hey!  The money machine won’t give me money. It says I already got money today. Hmmmm. I wander about, find an NCI Land Officer, Phoenix. I ask for help and begin chatting with her. I’m telling her about the money, and asking other questions.

My husband comes by again. Aren’t you going to brunch? Yes, I say. I continue chatting online. He persists (how annoying!!!!). Was your brunch cancelled? I finally look at him. What are you TALKING about??? He says, weren’t you meeting C at 11? I say yes, I don’t have to leave til 10. And I look at the clock and yell – oh no!!!! It’s 10:45!!!!! NO WAY am I going to make it on time. I interrupt my chat and say YIKES I’m missing a RL date. Phoenix laughs and wishes me luck.

I try to shut down the computer while I dial C’s number frantically. I think I reach her but hear nothing. I try her home number, I try to leave a message. I’m going crazy, I’m moving in the Real world thinking about the SL world.  I’m running about my house grabbing my shoes, my jacket, my bag, my keys, WHERE are my KEYS???? Finally I reach C. I can’t really hear her but I’m yelling – I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I’m on my way!!!!! I’m leaving now!!!! I run out the door yelling goodbye to my husband, jump in the car, plug in the cell phone and head out to the highway. I call my sister and say “Run away while you still can!!! Don’t log back in!!! Forget you ever did this!!!!!” She is laughing. She says “I TOLD you SO”. She hangs up, laughing. Sisters.

I’m only 30 minutes late and C forgives me. We catch up on our news. I can’t seem to stop talking about SL. Her eyes grow wide when I say that my sister and I spent 10 hours online doing this. Now she’s laughing too. I’m glad that I can amuse people and bring joy to their lives. When we go back and hang out with her husband H, I tell him all about it as well. Our conversation gets more technical as we discuss my connection issues, routers, WiFi. I tell both of them about the threads on the forums discussing prototyping RL items in SL – what about patent protection? I think H may be getting intrigued. He has his own favorite chat boards. And when it’s time for C to go to work and me to go home, she laughs and says “Are you heading straight back to the computer?” And although I’m embarrassed I confess that yes, I probably am. This has overtaken my life. Am I the same person who ten days ago IM’d that I couldn’t see why anyone would want SL?

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