The Year Joshua Saved Halloween in Second Life

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I wasn’t here back in the very early days of Second Life, back when somehow Halloween became the treasured celebration that we obsess about today.  I WAS, however, a resident the year it almost didn’t happen.

When I arrived inworld there were already many constants and traditions. One of them was that Wednesday mornings were set aside for grid maintenance.

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Second Life would be down for hours. In fact, there were betting pools on how long this week’s maintenance would last. Residents would congregate on various social media sites and look for signs, good or bad, to indicate how things were going (if it had been 5 hours you just knew there were more than the usual number of glitches).

Word would circulate quickly when the doors were open again – avatars would be trampled as everybody rushed to logon at the same time. Then we all tried teleporting, or crossing sim boundaries, to see what new quirks had been introduced (you’d think having your hair stuck to your butt would be the worst, but it rarely was).

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In 2007 Halloween landed on a Wednesday. The celebration people had been preparing for months, the parties that had been scheduled, the dates that had been arranged, everything was suddenly jeopardized when it was announced that the usual roller-coaster ride of tinkering was going to happen.

It wasn’t just that the grid would be down for hours, it was the knowledge that something invariably got broken during the “fix it” process that had everybody up in arms.

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One of the odd aspects of a smaller grid, as it was back then, is that communication was much more personal. We all knew the Linden who scheduled maintenance and made life so interesting on a weekly basis. We knew who the guilty party was – and all the outrage was directed at him.

The Lindens were much closer to the residents in those days and they often listened. Joshua did and he moved the longstanding grid shutdown to both placate the angry mob and to ensure something they also loved went ahead without official interruption.

I remember him every year at this time and I miss, what felt like, a personal connection with the people behind the scenes. I don’t know where he is now, but I look for him. This season I pretended I found him and thanked him once again. :)

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3 Comments

  1. ahuva18

     /  October 31, 2013

    Okay, I LOVE this story. I wasn’t around in 2007, but I can understand what was happening. I don’t know Joshua, but I love him for “getting it”. Yay Joshua, wherever you may be!

    Reply
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