Where the Trail Stops

Where the Trail Stops
by Bay Sweetwater

Where the trail stops in a stand of pines and birches,
and the breeze hurries home in the darkening afternoon,
there lies a lost and frozen lake,
framed by holly and persimmon trees.

A fallen tree limb makes a bench, I settle
and gaze at twilight dressing for the evening
in a gown of silver, ribboned in pink and blue,
waiting for her escort in the chariot of Selene.

Sudden as lightning, a crack fractures the lake,
so swift and dark and silent, you could miss it,
if you did not love this lake as much as I.
The leaden sky presses low and scatters snow.

(Photographed in A Dream of Snow sim, Second Life)

Full Steam ahead for Second Life, and that’s a good thing for machinima

A lot of Second Lifers are getting steamed up about Steam, now that Linden Lab has announced it will put a portal to our little backwater enclave of Second Life up on Steam, home of 40 million gamers. D-day apears to be September 5, at least that’s what Valve, the technology company creator of Steam, says here. This has a lot of SL residents worrying we will be overrun with griefers, gun-toting hulks, and general mayhem once the “Portal” opens.

One of the more thoughtful posts along these lines comes from Darrius Gothy here who predicts that the rush of gamers into SL will erode our world into a “poor reproduction of a well-crafted 3D online game” and move SL toward game play and further away from the “My World, My Imagination” ethos. The more alarmist posts like these from Prokofy Neva here and Crap Mariner here predict griefers, mayhem, and even a shooting rampage down the Destination Guide yellow-brick road (that’s from Crap, who else?)

Well, after reading all this exciting doomsday stuff, I had to head over to Steam to check it out. What is missing from these analyses, I think, is the fact that not only will Steamers be joining us, we’ll be joining them – if we want. We will have a new playground with amazing technology, distribution structure, mentoring, and 40 million new friends to play with. 40 million! Steam is just as much – in fact millions of times more – of a community as SL is. The complexity, brilliance, and technical skill of the Steam community is dazzling.

What’s a Pansy Hopper like Bay Sweetwater doing on Steam?

Now don’t get me wrong – anyone who has watched my machinima, like Twinkle’s Journey and Pieces of My Heart, knows I’m not exactly the shoot ’em-up, mow-’em-down stereotypic gamer. In fact, when I first began talking about Valve’s new Source Filmmaker software a couple months back, one Second Lifer who shall remain nameless asked what a “pansy hopper” like Bay Sweetwater was doing on Steam. I never could figure out what a “pansy hopper” was, though I loved the name and will definitely use it for a character in a machinima someday. Even after thumbing through my urban dictionary I still don’t know what it is, but it didn’t sound complimentary. Continue Reading “Full Steam ahead for Second Life, and that’s a good thing for machinima”

Ezzai 2/11- Egypt Liberation Machinima, Second Life–with lyrics!

Here’s my latest machinima, a tribute of love and admiration for the brave heroes who ushered in freedom for Egypt! Virtual Egypt and Modern Egypt sims in Second Life were packed to capacity with avatars celebrating the news Friday February 11, 2011, that Mubarak had stepped down. Sympathizers came to the Egypt sim every day of the revolution since January 25 in support of the real-life protestors in their fight for freedom. Congratulations, Egypt! I join you dancing in Tahrir Square.

Music credits

The song “Ezzai” [English translation: “How Come?”] was recorded in November 2010 and released on February 6, 2011. It immediately went viral over the Internet and became the song of the revolution, sung throughout the streets of Cairo.

Sung by Mohamed Mounir.
Composed and arranged by Ahmed Farahat.
Lyrics by Nasr Al Din Nagy.

Translation
English translation of Arabic lyrics of “Ezzai” below.
Thanks to hopescalop on Overstream for the translation: http://www.overstream.net/view.php?oi…
See original “Ezzai” music video at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZIKcHI…

HOW COME?
How can you accept for me, my love
That I adore your name
While you only confuse me more
You do not feel my kindness.
How come?

I can’t find a motive to love you
or an excuse to love you so truly
How come I raise your head [make you proud]
And you bend my head [humiliate me].
How come?

I am the oldest street in you
And your hope against what happened to you
I am a child who got attached to you
Who you lost in the middle of the road
If your love was a choice
My heart would have changed.

I swear by your life I will keep changing
In you til you approve of me
How can you accept for me, my love
That I adore your name
While you only confuse me more?
You do not feel my kindness.
How come?

I can’t find a motive to love you
or an excuse to love you so truly
How come I raise your head [make you proud]
And you bend my head [humiliate me]?
How come?

How can you leave me in my weakness?
How come you are not standing on my side?
When I lived all my life
Just to not see fear in your eyes!
In your sea or your land
How can I protect your back
When my back at the end of the night
Sleeps bent and exposed?

I am the oldest street in you
And your hope in the harm that happened to you.
I am a child who got attached to you
Who you lost in the middle of the road.
If your love was a choice,
My heart would have changed.

I swear by your life I will keep changing
In you till you approve of me.
How can you accept for me, my love,
That I adore your name
While you only confuse me more?
You do not feel my kindness.
How come?