Friday, 21 October 2016

Witches; Death; Dilemmas

No: of witchy things bought: 8 (good); No. of Halloweeny items already in inventory: Numberless (or possibly, 666); Hysterical witch accusers encountered: one (awkward)

In a couple of weeks is HALLOWEEN which is always fun time in SL as great opps for becoming ghost, creating spooky haunted houses etc. etc. After a couple of days away from SL due to physical world travel arrived back just in time for Virtual Worlds Education Roundtable meeting, which was v. interesting talk from Greg Prumier who has been teaching in SL for 7 Years (that was in fact title of talk). When got to VWER he and a couple of others were variously standing/sitting by circle of cushions on one side of VWER area. Greg asked where to put presenter and so told him and then set out more of Dustbunny's Darling Sectional Cushions (which are indeed v boho and cute) in orange and red to match autumn theme of sim. Realised afterwards that didn't ask Beth (organiser and host of event) if she already had plans about setting up area, so hope didn't offend.

Anyway, next week am leading discussion on "Halloween and other festivals - can we use them for education in Virtual Worlds?" which is basically an excuse for me to drown VWER parcel in witchy stuff. Had not yet visited the Salem event, so tped over and had happy half hour trying out gallows props, deciding how many new mirrors I needed (answer: lots) and musing over whether should buy Besom hair with stylish witch hat (answer: of course). Snapped up sparkly spider webs, village stocks (with tomato giver for throwing at person IN stocks), pumpkin cookie-giver, sinister cloaked form holding moddable poster and a few other items.

During tour of event came across sign (see above)which said that Abigail Williams (famous accuser at Salem witch trials) was hidden on sim. After Black Dahlia hunt assumed that this might be challenging e.g. with small effigy of Abigail hidden up a tree somewhere, but in fact proved to be v. easy as simply followed path in wood and there was real avatar dressed as Abigail, pointing and muttering wicked, wicked under her breath. Was all very nice, but immediately felt like awkward situation, since this was an actual person (though presuably an actual person who was going afk a lot). Was not sure of appropriate behaviour. Should one say "Hi, I'm Sheila I believe you have some issues with witches?" or shout and point "Evil liar evil liar"? or was one expected to interact in order to learn fun facts about the Salem Witch Trials? In fact did the British thing of pretending hadn't seen her and scuttling back down the path. Am shown in pic hiding behind tree when crept back later to see if she was still there.

When got back to VWER had fun time setting out a Halloween setting that was spooky but not too gruesome. Am not sure if got level right e.g. felt that guillotine and people in nooses might be going to far for educational area, on other hand flying skeleton holding lamp and coffin with skeleton hand curling round lid somehow seemed ok. Set out cute rustic table with assorted Halloween food givers including cauldron of poisoned apples (when you accept one and wear it you fall over dead - see pic, am sort of slumped under table).

Might be challenging for newbies as have to detach apple to become not dead (as opposed to undead) (see pic). On other hand would give people someone else to throw rotten fruit at, when got tired of pelting miscreants in village stocks. Am sure there are educational life lessons there.

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