Wednesday, 29 October 2014


I'm ‪#‎FEELINGNUTS‬ to raising awareness of the Testicular Cancer Campaign, which is launched by It is treatable if discovered in time. Check once a month, and a good way to remember is the day you write your rent cheque or pay your mortgage -- get into a nice hot shower and feel the cords for anything unusual. Ask your doctor if you're not sure what you're looking for. Some lumps and bumps may  
be harmless and normal, but your doctor will know for sure. The important thing is to get into the habit of checking.
     And if you're reading this and you have testicles -- you're tagged, mister.  

Tuesday, 28 October 2014

072: Voodoo Hallowe'en at Second Pride

My BF Alex Thaub and I went dancing at the Second Pride sim last night to celebrate Voodoo Hallowe'en, and after a while we went to have a look around at the rest of the Hallowe'en build. Not because we were bored with the music or the company, I assure you, both were first rate. But I understand that this exceptional build will only be in place for a little while and I wanted to make sure I
saw it. And I think I can safely say that you have GOT to see this stuff, it's amazing.
     I live in a fairly rural part of Canada where things like a Hallowe'en haunted house, or a fun house attraction, are not common -- at least, not in my experience. Hallowe'en in my real life tends to be a bunch of little kids wandering around asking for candy while
wearing plastic masks and flame-proof mass-produced costumes, shepherded by embarrassed adults who should have had the sense to put a shot of Scotch into the Timmies' coffee they're using to keep their hands warm LOL.  (Ask a Canadian friend to explain Tim Horton's to you.) Then there's the local big gay dance, which I like to avoid completely since I gave up on badly-produced sock
hops back in my high-school days; those 35 badly-dressed people can have fun without me, thanks. Folks, if you live in a small town and you want to celebrate Hallowe'en properly, Second Life is definitely the place to do it. And from now on, Jak Calcutt's builds are what I want to experience when I celebrate Hallowe'en.
     I know Jak because he's a neighbour, and because I was very impressed by his work for Second Pride last summer (my interview is here, which is how we got to know each other), especially a gorgeous chapel for memorials and weddings. Somehow, looking at his work, I had rather associated his builds in my head with a kind of restrained elegance  -- the kind of build that doesn't waste
prims because it was designed that way, not because it had to be cut back to what you see, if you know what I mean. Everything works to the concept and it's harmonious and beautiful.
     Well, I have to say, he has a sense of crazy fun that I didn't understand until last night. There were three installations that we went through; Frankenstein's laboratory, the Haunted Mansion, and
the Fun House. Before we went wandering, Jak told me to keep running my cursor over things and, if I found something clickable or something to sit on, I should just go for it and see what happens. The first thing we hit was the lab. I've made what we walked into the first picture here.  Look at all the beautiful pieces, with all kinds of correct period details -- hell, even the math on
the blackboard is realistic. And when I figured out I could click on the operating table, I thought, "Well, he SAID to click on stuff ..."  All of a sudden I found myself strapped to the table and rising 60 feet in the air, while lightning crackled around me! Hilarious and as near as I remember the movie, quite accurate. You have to experience it for yourself.
     I won't go into too much detail about the rest of the installations, because honestly, you deserve to have fun just wandering around and exploring things for yourself and, most importantly, being surprised. Very surprised, in some cases. I have a bit of a thing about spiders, especially big black ones the size of a Toyota, and nearly soiled myself a couple of times... once or twice I nearly
wet myself laughing. The haunted mansion is filled with things to click on and explore and interact with, and you should just go for it. The fun house is a little maddening, but truly an exceptional piece of work. You might have to take five or six or ten tries to get the path right (there's one ladder that nearly drove me crazy), but you will have a real sense of accomplishment when you manage to
find your way to the end. I have to say, when I tried to trace the path in my mind that we took, up and down and sideways and all, I think that little fun house is a masterpiece of topology. Jak must be the kind of guy who can pack six weeks' worth of clothes into a single suitcase, if that fun house is any example.
     If you get really really frustrated in the fun house, here's a trick that Alex passed
along -- just open your map, locate yourself and TP outside. You can always go back and start again.
     Even the grounds around the installations are worth exploring, with nice little interactive touches here and there. I took so many pictures that I had to split my visit into two posts (the first one I mounted last night, showing people's costumes at the dance party).
     All in all, I know there are a lot of installations at this time of year, and I've even been to another couple of haunted house sims and Hallowe'en hayrides and that sort of thing. This is the best one EVER. Get in there right now because you will be sorry to miss it.  Thanks for the fun, Jak!

Monday, 27 October 2014

071: Dancing at the Voodoo Hallowe'en Festival at Second Pride

Ah, the cycle of Hallowe'en parties is starting to get really cranked up. I did want to make a point of taking my friend Alex Thaub out dancing at the Second Pride Voodoo Hallowe'en Festival on the Second Pride temporary build. It's a good cause, they have got some great DJs and everyone gets a great party! Tonight we have Galileo Michalski of 3Bears (where I live) to thank for the
party, featuring the DJ and hosting skills of my neighbours, partners Jak Calcutt and Karl Kalchek.
     I couldn't stay for the second half, because I wanted to explore some very cool builds on the sim that I'd heard about. So many pictures that I'll split it in half -- tomorrow's post will be devoted to Rusty and Alex in the haunted house, fun house and various scary stuff!! (No
pictures of me falling off the monorail like a doofus, thank goodness.)
     Enjoy the pictures and see if you recognize anyone!
     And check out the sim -- there's been some amazing work, all donated labour, and this is a good cause that deserves our support. Did I mention it's a lot of fun?