Friday, September 29, 2006

Sometimes it's hard to be a woman....

Ladies, I gotta hand it to you, I have no idea how you make it through the day.

Ok, as regular readers know, I play Second Life a lot, and have started my own clothing business in game.

I stumbled upon a problem. You see, you create clothes in SL by uploading your textures, then to create a new shirt or whatever, you have to put it on your character in order to apply the texture.

I’m a male. I have a male character. I make mostly female clothes.

Basically, I had one of two choices. Hijack Sunny’s character every time I make something new, or turn my character into an occasional cross dresser and get myself a ‘reputation’.

There’s also the problem that you need to take pictures of your clothes for your sales board…and it doesn’t matter how well designed that girly-pink strappy top is…no one’s going to buy it if it’s being modeled by a six foot tall guy with a goatee beard.

So obviously, I chose the first option…I make the textures in Photoshop and used Sunny’s female character to actually create the clothes and model for the pictures.

However, even that caused problems. I lost count of the sheer number of times I had to type “Sunny isn’t here, this is her husband, I’m just using her avatar to create some clothes”. Not to mention I was starting to seriously clog up her inventory.

So, I finally bit the bullet and made myself a female alternate.

…I know, I felt icky as well.

It solved a lot of problems. One, I didn’t have to hijack Sunny’s avatar. Two, I had a character to actually model the clothes for pictures for my sales board. Three, when the only items the new character has are clothes I’ve made, no searching through a massive list of items every time I want to look at something.

Then, to discourage conversations and misunderstandings, (after all, if I’m on using the female character, I’m ‘working’), I wrote in the new female character’s profile:

I’m actually a guy. This avatar was created PURELY for the purposes of being a mannequin for clothes design. Don’t take it personally if I don’t answer you or ignore friend requests. If I’m using this avatar, I’m working.

Seems simple enough, right?

Well, you’d think so, wouldn’t you?

So today, I made something new, log in as my female character, and apply the outfit. So I’m just checking to make sure everything looks right, when I get an IM:

“Hey Baby! How’re you?”

Another guy in the same area has decided he likes what he sees.

I ignore him. I’m busy…he’ll read my profile in a second.

“Hey baby, why are you ignoring me? Wanna go somewhere? I know a great place *wink*”

Jesus H effing Christ. I ignore him some more.

“What is it baby. Playing hard to get?”

Finally, I just say “Dude, read my profile.”

He does, and instantly vanishes. Obviously the idea that he just came onto a guy has disturbed him greatly. I chuckle to myself. I’ve been a female for 15 seconds, and I’m already starting to hate men.

So I finish checking the outfit. Then I decide to make some prims for it. (You make textures outside of the game, but to make actual objects, like flexible fabric etc, you have to make those in game).

I’m 15 minutes into making the object, when suddenly I get another instant message.

“Hey cutie!”

Sigh. “Read my profile.”

“OMG! Why do you have a female Av if you’re a guy?!?!”

Sigh. “Read the rest of my profile.”

“Oh, ok.”

This guy gets the message. He leaves me alone and I go back to designing…10 minutes later.

“Well, hello there sexy! How’re you this fine day.”

I’m about to lose it. I’m just trying to design some fricking clothes, and I’m being constantly hit on by guys who think watching two in-game characters have sex is actually a relationship.

I log out of SL, log back in under my male character. I search my inventory and transfer my adjustable title to my female character.

So I log back in under my female alt, and set the adjustable title up. Now anyone who looks at me sees a glowing sign above my head that says “I’M A GUY. PLEASE READ MY PROFILE BEFORE IM-ing ME PLEASE”

There, that should do it. I’ve got a gigantic sign telling everyone that despite the fact I’m using a female character, I’m actually a guy. I get back to work.

Then…no less that 10 minutes later.

“Hey Sexy! Nice tits! How you doing?”

This time I really lose it. I shout back:


Oh no. Now suddenly the pale friendless virgin sitting at the computer has had his sexuality questioned.

“OMG ur a fag! Why u usin a gurl?”

Ever just completely lose it? I typed so fast, smoke was coming off the keyboard.

“For FUCK’s sake!” I reply. “My profile states VERY plainly that I’m using this avatar for my clothes business. I’ve got a big glowing sign over my head that says “I’m a guy!” in foot high letters. I’m in a public sandbox that’s here purely for people to use to build things…Now what part of ALL THIS did you misunderstand as ‘I’m a girl who desperately wants to have virtual sex with someone who’s idea of a smooth chatup line is ‘Hey Nice tits!?”

The reply was a rather eloquent:

“Rofl! Ur a fag.”

Luckily, I’m a member of the sandbox group under both avatars, so I just banned him.

Now I should be clear that the vast majority of people you meet in Second Life are very nice people. I have used my female ‘mannequin’ a few times and not been bothered.

The difference is, while I occasionally get bothered under my female character…I’ve never been propositioned or bothered like that while using my regular male character.

I mean, sure, a good few women have hit on me in SL. (You can’t be listening to music in a virtual nightclub and not have people flirt with you). I also have quite a few female friends on SL…however, none of them have ever started a conversation with “Hey, nice ass!”…or called me gay if I’ve turned them down for anything ‘romantic’.

I mean, I’ve played as my male character and got ‘hit on’, and when I’ve let them know I’m married and not interested, usually the reply I’ll get is along the lines of:

“Oh, no problem, so where are you from?”

In other words, women can think “Oh, this guy’s not available or not interested. I’ll go look somewhere else or maybe he’ll just be someone fun to talk to.”

On the other hand, I’ve watched Sunny play, and occasionally she’ll get some freak who just walks up and says something really smooth, witty or romantic like “Wanna fuck?”…and when she tells she’s not interested, she gets called a ‘lesbo’.

In other words, the basement dwelling, teenage males can’t handle the fact that there’s a woman out there who doesn’t desperately want to virtually sleep with them

Seriously, ladies, I have no idea how you deal with it.

I’ve had less than an hour viewing a virtual game-world from the female perspective, and I found myself muttering ‘Men! Who needs ‘em?’


Miz S said...


MC Etcher said...

Ha Ha Ha!

So what happens when we're just a consciousness downloadable into a template body, be it virtual or real?

Who wouldn't want to try out a day as the other sex?

Enigma said...

Poor guy.... girl.... guy.... uh, poor you....

Now you get why when "nice guys" show up they get the "wentch" reply.


mistyforeverlost said...

ROFLMAO~ Now you know why I updated my profile to read what it does!

Men...pigs. And you thought we are just being mean when we say that.