I’ve been promising myself, for a very long time now, that I would go visit Venexia↑. I had seen all those gorgeous photos out there and knew that I’d fall in love with this dark roleplay location. Today was, finally, the day to indulge myself. I picked up the Visitor Tag and wandered while I thought about what I wanted to say in this post, or more accurately how I wanted to say it.
If you have even a modicum of self-respect, a fledgling ability to think for yourself, a personality which has emerged out of the shallow end of the pool, and/or the seed of a backbone, you will find the following stories very hard to believe. (That was subtle, right? I’m trying to exercise a little tact.) I promise you, however, that they are true.
Many years ago I had gotten to know somebody in Second Life. I actually knew him much better than he thought – a mutual friend would let me know when I was being lied to, but the lies were never that important. This person’s first life was nothing I was particularly interested in. It wasn’t that kind of friendship. One day I introduced him, we’ll call him Fred, to another of my friends. The two of them seemed to get along and went off doing projects together.
One day Fred came to me and said he’d decided that this other person was untrustworthy. I thought that seemed odd, but said OK and changed the subject. He, however, came back to it repeatedly over the next few days.
It finally sunk in that Fred expected me to drop this other person because of his decision. WTF? I explained, as gently as I could, that I was sorry the two of them had fallen out but that wasn’t going to affect my relationship with either of them.
He was shocked. I was astonished that he, or anybody for that matter, would think that I would make personal decisions like that based solely on his opinion. I don’t take a poll of bystanders before choosing or unchoosing my friends or co-workers or any aspect of my life.
Recently on Plurk, which is like junior high school at the best of times, a gang (it’s like they need each other to access one complete brain) demanded that somebody drop an individual from their timeline because they didn’t like this other person. When she refused they all started defriending her.
Now you and I might think “Great! Clear the gabbling clutter!”, but she wound up leaving a social network that she loved. All because a ravening pack of morons set out to make her life miserable and succeeded. I don’t blame her – why spend your time and energy in a place that is full of so much teenaged angst? Unfortunately it makes that gaggle of brainless, shrill, infants feel empowered.
It all made me think of that guy Fred. At what point in these lives did some powerful entity appear and anoint them with the unrestricted ability to dictate personal decisions to others? Is there an ego drink on the market I’ve missed? RedBull for your arrogance?
To those who might have difficulty understanding why I find this so hard to support, allow me to share the thoughts of people who aren’t part of your little clique.
Some of us decide things for ourselves. If we get new information – well, then, we’ll weigh it and reach our own conclusions. My decision about friends or acquaintances is not dependent on your approval. If I include somebody in an event, and you don’t like them, well maybe I have a different experience with them than you do. Your screaming and bitter invective doesn’t change my mind.
I have to wonder how long that group around you will stick if somebody else points a finger at you and says “hate this person”. Wouldn’t you rather have friends who make up their own minds? Don’t look at me though – my decision about you is already made. :)