02
Jun
09

The shallow end

“Hispanic, US national, enjoys being center of attention in real world and chatrooms. Opinionated and egotistical. Led by emotions. Talks of ideals but does not act on them. Shallow.”

So reads the report in my ‘dossier’.

Wow. Free from politeness, free from any tempering to spare anyone’s feelings – that’s my whole identity flattened in a couple of dozen words. The others say they feel violated but for me – maybe because my character has been so totally trashed (even Ignatius comes off better) – this is worse.

How dare they presume to know me? They don’t know me. Where were my surveillance videos, where were my photos? At least these would have shown the world something of me.

And ‘low threat’ hurts even more. Low threat. Irrelevant. Powerless.

The thing that hurts most though is *you* saying nothing, casually observing as we were turned inside out. I thought Café con Miguel was a space of trust between us, a small connection in the chaos of the universe. Obviously I misjudged you. So that’s it, it’s over. Café con Miguel is closed for business.

14
May
09

A matter of taste

I hope everyone is taking the time to enjoy the party. I’ve met some really interesting people so far and I hope you have too. I did have some butterflies though – not just the ‘is anybody going to turn up?’ butterflies, but because I knew the enemy were going to be there.

The best parties always have that frisson of danger because you can’t control who’s going to appear out of the blue. ‘OMG, it’s that guy whose fender I wrecked yesterday,’ or, ‘OMG, it’s my ex and their new significant other!’ Random people are being invited into a single room and a punch in the face lurks in every wrong look.

So did anyone have a run in with Veilcorp or their ‘affiliates’ at the party? Because they were there – still are, I guess. Now I’m not saying Veilcorp are trouble; as party host it would be wrong of me to judge, but as Guardian Angel of ‘what is’ and ‘what isn’t’ I must speak out. They are wrong in so many ways – even taste (‘Veilcorp’ anyone? A tiger start-up trying too hard to impress the big boys). Just what sort of person signs up with guys like that? ‘Affiliates’ Veilcorp call them; ‘Collaborators’ Ignatius would say, and for once I’m inclined to agree with him.

So to these collaborators I say: ‘Do you know what you are doing? Are you collaborating because you were bullied by Veilcorp? Are you looking for advancement, or are you in it for the sheer joy?’ Because I don’t know which of you I fear the most – the bullied, the climbers or the jokers.

11
May
09

Top secret

Something very special has happened over the weekend. I can’t tell you everything – in fact I can’t tell you anything and it is soooo not fair! But just to pre-empt your congratulations, I’m not about to become a father (brother that would be a shock!) and Perez Hilton has yet to ask me to guest edit his site (only a matter of time, I’m sure).

So what, I hear you say, can be so exciting? Britney and Justin doing a duet in my bathroom? Not even close!

I will reveal all, so to speak, when the time comes, but for now I can reveal only one thing: the alphaAFK is finally getting its priorities right, stopping all the griefing and throwing a party. That’s right. But keep it quiet, this is hot off the press, hush hush and on the QT. I’ll let you know where and when soon.

27
Apr
09

The country mouse

I hate liars but the world is so full of them we can’t get away – or maybe I’m a liar magnet, I don’t know.

My grandmother used to say, ‘Donde hay calor har serpientes,’ ‘Where there is heat, there are snakes.’ This terrified me as a boy growing up in San Diego – when wasn’t it hot?! But now I’ve come to the City of Angels, I understand what she really meant. Where there is more to win there will always be more snakes.

I, like many others, Greyhounded here, a dungareed hick with straw in my gapped teeth, looking politely for my shot at immortality. My personal dream? To unite the world with my Oscar™ winning speech after directing The Versace Story. Now I go to class, I wait tables, I test – so it goes. One of 10 million dreamers. So will I succeed? I’m hot, I’m loud but… here be snakes.

And here in the virtual world, the competition is just as fearsome. Will it be little me, with my out-of-town morality, or will one of 10 million others be prepared to lie and cheat their way into hearts and minds and through closed doors, thinking nothing of pushing friends and morals aside to achieve glory?

Maybe I’m trying to deny the truth – but the world deserves to hear my acceptance speech.

So, good people, a word of warning to you. Many are now looking for Xi and the stakes are getting higher. I can feel the heat. So check your shoes, because I think the snakes are already among us.

20
Apr
09

The inner-beautiful people

What wonderful people every last primped and preened one of you are. The Hub has never seen anything quite like it - Friday in particular was utter mayhem with impromptu parties galore as thousands of you cast off your shackles to reveal your inner loveliness.

I can’t pick out any favourites since there were so many totally awesome make overs – but you know what, I’m going to anyway:

‘|Achilleas|’ – scary

‘Ognamus’ - reclaiming Texas for real men

‘jawa_juice’ - a real exhibitionist

Godsgift1888′ – how brave you were to show us your nurse’s outfit

You were all so brave and deserve a big hug from Miguel! If only the big wide world could be so honest. More than anything, you’ve all shown me and the whole of Home what fun can be had with a few party tricks.

Thank you everyone

Miguel xxx

17
Apr
09

Strip yourself bare!

Inspired by recent developments, it is my pleasure to announce:

THE FIRST EVER AVATAR INNER BEAUTY CONTEST

A distractivity

presented by

CAFÉ CON MIGUEL

Yes people, that’s right. Everyone is talking about avatar enhancement and the time could not be better for the first ever avatar inner beauty contest.

To take part, all you have to do is throw off your shackles and explore your inner self.

HOW TO UNLEASH THE TRUE YOU:
o Change the look of your avatar
o Go to the Hub.
o Rate other contestants’ inner beauty using the new function on your HoloPAD (thanks Thom).
o Be rated yourself.

That’s right! Cast off your armor and show your real self to the world!

A function on the HoloPAD will allow others to rate the new you as you can rate the new them.

Remember, I’m not looking for the clichéd buxom blue-eyed blonde or the square-jawed hunk. I might as well watch a re-run of Baywatch.

Look deep inside yourself and see how you would really like to be. Are you a mild mannered bank manager with a leather fixation? Or is the gingham look more your thing? Would you like to explore, dare I say it, another gender?

Be your inner self! Because in the end *that is your true self*.

16
Apr
09

Six degrees

Could Xi give you the ability to become a ‘super-being’ inside Home? You heard it here first! Everyone is talking about ‘avatar enhancement’ and it certainly fits in with the whole butterfly metaphor.

All avatars are enhancements in a way. Here are the six types yours truly has identified:

1 – Straight Avatar
2 – Augmented Avatar
3 – Depraved Avatar
4 – Experimental Avatar
5 – Androgenous Avatar
6 – Uber Avatar

1
Straight Avatar speaks for itself, the avatar closely resembles ourselves and this is probably the avatar most of us have.

2
Possibly though many of us have augmented our Avatars, even just a little bit to satisfy our egos – bigger breasts or pecs, you might not even know you’re doing it. There’s no shame!

3
An intriguing one this, some people like to pervert their avatar into something ugly, either a perverted vision of themselves or something completely off the wall. And why not? Expression has many forms and while psychological implications lurk herein, it’s true, where don’t they lurk? Applaud it!

4
Experimenting with your gender is something well documented in the real world already. Not an easy thing to do, though obviously it’s easier in the virtual world; but it still takes cajones to be so truthful.

Hopefully you’ll see each of these requires increasing complexity of thought. It’s easy to want bigger pecs but there is probably far more behind wanting to change gender, be it psychology, philosophy, or history. It’s a much more sophisticated way of thinking, which leads us to…

5
Ah, what if there were no gender? No sk8erbois or gangstas or cheerleaders or teenie wahinis… life would be soooo much easier but far less fun! It’s been a few years since Mr Iron’s biology class, but as I recall we are male and female simply so we can reproduce. But gender isn’t important in a virtual world – it’s a throwback to a previous self, as the coccyx is a memory of where we evolved from. We cling to it people, because it is what we know, it is all we know. In a virtual world though an androgynous avatar would have all the best features of both – a man’s strength, a woman’s compassion, a man’s instinct to protect, a woman’s emotional intelligence. It would be neither, it would be greater. Currently we can’t pick and choose but that would be the final stage of avatar development.

6
Suppose you could find a way of actually circumventing the boundaries that have been created for our avatars, then you could enhance yourself above and beyond all others. You could increase functionality across the board and it is no exaggeration to say you would become a pseudo god. As Tom Waits said, ‘In the world of the blind, the one-eyed man is King.’

So what are you? What would you like to be?




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