Sunday, July 20, 2008

Recognition (Why We Do It)

Good Lord, that was a long night, and worth every moment.

Up at 8:30 on a Saturday, fairly typical, on the Relay track at 9:00, not typical, and prancing about Second Life for the next 25 hours. (Almost completely out of character.) I had a reason, but I'm getting to that.

I did roughly what I did on the track last year, only MOAR of such. I ran a few laps with Viderian Vollmar. I'm not sure how many, at least two. I ran a lap and a half or so with Mordecai Scaggs. I ran a few laps myself and did one as a product test with the Freestyle Mermaid override. I did a more social lap where I investigated the various builds, chatted with a few of the people there. This was by far my favorite lap, particularly a brief chat with David Valentino. (We've talked a few times over the last few years, always pleasant.)

Of course, there were annoyances. In order of arrival:

  • Avilion group lined their sim with avatars and created a quagmire for the first few laps until many of those avatars packed it in for the night. Frustrating and effectively like swimming in molasses through the sim. I grew to appreciate the gesture though, later into the night when there were A: less avatars on the track, and B: less avatars lining the track cheering. It was a lovely build.

  • A trio of avatars were using a form of an impulse engine, it appeared to behave as a directional-forward moveto that on the straights I had trouble keeping up with even when flying. Unsporting. And I do recall an Estate message in the early going that those were deemed to be unfair. I cannot remember, nor did I log, the message and so I do not know what the official ruling is or will be.

As the night wore on, my love of the Avilion group's build grew. As did my, and collectively in Caledon's upset at the conduct of the avatars who were rapidly passing and lapping their way to the top of the stack.
Whining ensued, tired set in, went to sleep with the knowledge that Vidrian, who'd showed up early and stayed late, go from far and away the lap leader to being passed like he was standing still, running all night, stopping? Not much.
Where would be his recognition?
I wake in the morning and remember why we do this. I do it for my father in law. Died of lung cancer and various others. I do it for my mother, survivor of skin cancer. I do it for my aunt, died of colon cancer. I do it for myself, very pale skinned to the point of begging for melanoma. I do it for my father, uncle, cousin, each with heart and stroke troubles, and diabetes. I do it for my grandfather, the finest gentleman I've ever had the privilege to know, who fell to ALS.
I do it for Lapin Paris, my friend. May her coffin be hewn from the wood of a 100 year old tree, which I will plant sometime in the future.
Mordecai loves life, and ran some and played some and still made a grand showing.
Viderian does it for his mother, may she rest in peace.
Three names I've heard are to appear on the podium, to receive recognition. Three names which stayed long enough and struggles hard enough with any method necessary for personal recognition.
Viderian Vollmar worked overtime instead and ran the Last Lap.

I recognise Viderian. I recognise Lapin. I recognise myself.
I recognise community, the community that came out, showed up, and went to work.

The Swim Canisters and the Mermaids AOs will remain to the benefit of the Relay up to the last possible moment. And a little bit longer.

Addendum, following day after reflection:

I still don't know if Viderian's numbers were padded or anyone else's were penalised. We may never know. Here's to you, Pops.

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