Friday, December 18, 2009

Thanks for the Memories, Boots and Shawn Mission




This has to be the corniest (for non-Americans, awkwardly sentimental) post I have ever written. I came upon these old photos today from what must be September 2008 - the retirement party of Boots and Shawn Mission from running Mission Beach. As many of you readers know, for many years, Mission Beach was the first place that many LGBT avatars went to when they arrived in Second life. There was always someone to talk to, offer advice, give you some free clothes, provide companionship, or even offer to introduce you to cybersex. Mission Beach was open 24 x 7 and there was always someone there to keep you company or something to do to keep your amusement.




Mission Beach closed recently with controversy. Many of us, including myself miss how the old Mission Beach used to be when Boots and Shawn Mission were running it. Boots and Shawn founded the beach back in the early days of Second Life.  They made a large financial and time investment to start is up and get it going. Although "the beach" was frequently disorganized at times, and occasionally  had the camp drama reminiscent of a Joan Crawford movie, it was a place for love and sharing, For many, the attraction of the beach and its unique character declined when Boots and Shawn "retired" and turned it over to new management. Attendance and usage showed a big decline in 2009.

I am not criticizing anyone for this; many businesses and organizations exist on the personality and efforts of people who simply cannot be replaced. So, for many of us who have been resident in Second Life since 2008,  memories of "the beach" - how it was back when Boots and Shawn ran it, the wonderful and not-so wonderful people who were there, and memories of ourselves when we were perhaps a more enthusiastic about virtual reality, are ones that we will cherish forever.

When it came time for Boots and Shawn to retire, Jamie Cheeky and myself hired DJ Queen Edman to spin at a great party for several hours. The party was great. I took these photos then, only to have misplaced them for many months. I found them in some folder buried beneath the 15,000 photos I have stored on my drive today. I have to admit, I got a bit sentimental when I viewed these, and decided to make a You Tube Montage to Bob Hope singing "Thanks for the Memories". Please see this if you ever want to know if people in virtual communities can ever care for each other as much as they do in real life.

.Boots and Shawn, from what I understand, have gone their separate ways now; but still need to be thanked by us for all the hard work and funds they put into their sadly, now defunct vision. But, I think we need think of the positive times and thank Boots and Shawn, and everyone else who contributed so much to the beach, for all the great memories that will last forever. 

Thanks for Reading, Eddi.


2 comments:

  1. This came from Mani Canning for a different blog post. I moved the comment to this location since it is more appropriate here. Eddi Haskell

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    Some words to the end of Mission Beach sim:
    Boots or Mission Beach was or is still not only a region or a location in sl, primarily it was or is still the spirit of the bums. More and more bums were not longer seen at Boots Beach on the old sim. Running an entire sim is expensive and the decline of use caused its closing down and transferring to a smaller and cheaper place. Now the old Mission sim has gone and a new place has opened, but the spirit of the bums isn't threatened by the relocation, it's threatened by the bums themselves. Some of the nicest and most lovable bums left the Mission Group, they left it without valid reason. Even some quarrels cannot be seen as a valid reason to give up membership and with it to break a friendship which should be everlasting. Everlasting friendship, that is - as I believe - the spirit of the bums. Everlasting even if there are some quarrels as they occur everywhere from time to time. So come back to the group, come to the new Mission Beach now and then and reanimate the spirit of the bums!!!!

    Mani Canning

    ReplyDelete
  2. Mani, thank you for your thoughts. But a few points that I think need to be made.

    1. First, this video does not criticize anyone. It merely thanks two great people, Boots and Shawn Mission, for contributing so much to building and maintaining the old Mission Beach that I and others remember before they left running 18 months ago. Others many have great memories of the place starting in 2009; if this is the case, more power to you! Second Life will be remembered by its citizens for great groups like this.

    2. Any group declines in membership if it does not get new members, the attrition rate can be as high as 50%. I honestly do not know if Mission Beach declined in membership last year since I stopped being involved.

    3. When you say people left the group without a valid reason, I left the group because of several valid reasons- I had much less free time in Second Life in 2009; my social schedule suffered as a result. In addition, I have to make way for other groups - most notably around my publishing interests here- I am only allocated 25. I also got tired of all the spam in group IMs that was being left by group members; i leave all groups that have too much spam. Others may have similarly valid reasons.

    4. Okay, there is a "spirit of the bums". I will speak for myself and say that I simply do not have the time to rejoin the group right now-- I am active in other groups and clubs with "spirits" of their own. But this does not disparage the current group, and I wish everyone still connected with Mission Beach all the best for 2010!

    I have decided not to run any more comments on Mission Beach because it can start descending rapidly into personal attacks, and I simply do not want this played out on this blog, except for very positive thank-yous if someone wants to leave one. This string is now closed.
    All the best, Eddi

    ReplyDelete

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