Friday, June 29, 2007

In memoriam

It's been the kind of week in first life that has left me little time for Second Life. When I've been in world, I've generally been occupied—DJ gig at Activ8 on Sunday, DJ gig at the Velvet on Monday. I had that one hour very late on Tuesday when I went to see SpaceJunky. On Wednesday, however, I managed to find some time to take a quick look around the Second Pride sims.

This is Pride Week, and I've barely scratched the surface there. I took a balloon ride, which turns out to be a tour of the rather extensive site (six sims). A lot of the grounds have vendor booths, but there are other things of interest, including an art exhibit. When I saw the memorial quilt garden, however, I immediately jumped off the balloon and went splat on the ground. I had to go see the quilt.

I have known people who died of AIDS. My SO actually did one care-giving volunteer thing for a man who eventually died (SO couldn't face doing another). But I have never lost anyone close to me. Many others have. Some in SL have created little memorials to their missing loved ones, which have been assembled in that garden.

I wandered through the display. Not all of the squares are inspired. Not all are skilfully rendered. Some are even a bit macabre. But many are quite moving. Often, those are among the simplest ones: "He loved cooking and teddy bears," or, "I never got to say goodbye." The best convey, in various ways, the pain of loss and the joy of love for the one lost.

I hope the Second Pride exhibit is around for a while beyond Pride Week. There's a lot more that I'd like to see. But I'd also like to return to the quilt. It's a beautiful spot.

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