(Featuring designs by Soedara, Emo-tions, Madrid Solo, and a few others; photographed on the gorgeous Bellydance Oasis sim.)
(I look so different to myself! More info below…)
So, as those of you who are either my friends or have followed the pageant know, I did not make semi-finals. I worked my ass off during prelims and the nearly two months prior, I gave it my all, and it was not enough. Is this a disappointing realization? Yeah. But no one likes being told their best isn’t good enough, and there was some stiff competition. I love all the ladies that were competing and I know that Miss Metaverse is going to find a wonderful face of its pageants.
To add to that disappointment, a bit more drama flew my way at the hands of those who cannot seem to understand and respect a simple request. I mean, really… is it too much to ask to want 3 days to yourself? I didn’t have pageantry business to worry about, I had the weekend off of work (which I NEVER have, btw) and so I was taking some time to enjoy myself doing the things that *I* like to do. At the time the drama transpired I was actually in Gor… which is something I haven’t had the time to do in a long time… roleplaying… which is also something I haven’t had the time to do in a long time… and celebrating Kajrualia with a few of my closest friends. For those that don’t know, Kajuralia is a Gorean holiday in the books where a LOT of tolerance was given to slaves, and they could do much of what they pleased, within reason. Our roleplay centered in the Tavern… so I’m sure you could only imagine the things we were getting up to. But was I able to truly enjoy it? For awhile, yes. But damn… when I have an auto response up that expresses a simple wish to be left alone for the weekend, you’d THINK people could understand and respect that, yes?
Anyway. So needless to say it’s been a hell of a weekend.
Being the workaholic that I am, I couldn’t resist peeking into the designer behind Soedara (Marbella Provonost)’s IMs and asking if, after the weekend, she had any projects for me. She doesn’t have staff exactly, but I do odd jobs for her when she needs me to, like research projects. *Giggles* She comes back with, “Actually, yes, I do. It’s a pain in the ass.”
Now keep in mind, the last project I did for this woman was researching vendors and how many ways you could build a clothing rack and sell items from a prim with the texture on it… without putting the ACTUAL texture on it so copybotters couldn’t steal it. So when she tells me that something is a “pain in the ass”, I’m expecting a similar project.
Instead, she says she wants me to “parade around” in an outfit today and tells me to pick a color. Given a heart to heart I had with Sequoia Nightfire (more on that in a moment), I chose black, as my skin is darker now. Where I think I’m getting a pain in the ass project, instead, I get passed this gorgeous outfit.
(I think the only thing “pain in the ass” about this is the person wearing it. *Grins*)
Now, I mentioned earlier having a heart to heart with Sequoia Nightfire. A pageant that I’ve been hearing talked about for quite some time, given that the Dazzlers perform for it (I believe) is Colour of Couture. I ‘d not heard much more about it until registration opened up, so I went to take a peek. I think it is truly awesome what these women are doing. This pageant is directed specifically for women who portray women of color in Second Life, from a list of specified regions.
Depending on how long you’ve known me, if you know me at all, you may know that I played a mamba in Gor for YEARS, where I used the dark skin I’m wearing in these pictures. Essentially, to understand what a mamba is, culturally, think… tribal cultures in Africa… and then stereotype them to be cannibals. That is what I roleplayed. A fierce, vicious woman who normally couldn’t speak the language that those around her were speaking. It was amazingly fun, and honestly… I identified more with my personality in Gor than I did outside of Gor just trying to “be myself”.
I am not a woman of color in RL. But ever since I was young I’ve been FASCINATED with the culture in Zimbabwe. I was a puppeteer in a puppetry ministry in church when I was a preteen, and when our adult leader’s daughter became a missionary to Zimbabwe, our group actually handmade about 3 or 4 puppets that were meant to be culturally African, and sent them with her to take to the children down there for something to play with and teach with. Ever since then, I’ve been hooked.
In speaking with Sequoia, I told her about how I used to represent myself in SL, and about how I allowed people in modeling academies when I began modeling to convince me that a pale skin was more “right” for modeling… she urged me, rather simply, to consider that which I love. And if I truly loved it, then to represent myself how I wish, and live as that culture that I relate to and love. I’m trying my best to take her advice to heart. I may not be able to live it in RL, but the beauty of SL is that I can live it if I feel like it.
So if you see me around SL all dark again, know that I am once more truly myself. I honestly can’t believe that I allowed myself to lose sight of myself for that long… and I can actually thank the Miss Metaverse pageant for allowing me to rediscover who I am. When I walked out on that runway for the “Me” walk category, in that dark skin and tribal styling… I felt more myself than I ever had since before I began modeling.
And I’ll never lose that bit of myself again.
*~* Lies, Disguises, and Hoops They Make You Jump Through *~*
My Personal Shape
Bean[Dark] Pout – Brat 1: Curio
JABU Eyes – Green: -DAMNED-
*RUTH* Black (worn with hairbase): EMO-tions
Insanity Plea – Gold: Madrid Solo
Cleo 2 – Blush Only: Madrid Solo
Outfit (all jewelry & piercings included, except earrings):
Nubian Divinity Night Creature: Soedara *~* mesh included *~*
Nubian Divinity Headdress Stones Adorned: Soedara
3-Hoop Earrings in Radiant Gold: Misha Fine Jewelry
Feet (not pictured):
P.S. SURPRISE Soadara! I blogged it. 😛