Memories old and new of There.com. Personal insights and perspectives about the virtual and physical.
Empty. Cold. Numb. Drained and Frightened. How you feel when you realize clearly you were with evil. Touched by its dirty, filthy, yellowed- stained unkempt overgrown fingernails. Looked into the eyes with its toothless, hollow, lying grin. How could you have stayed with it so long? How could you have trusted it again, how could evil be in so many forms? In a form that worked so hard to make itself look good. The signs were there, the young innocents claiming corruption and betrayal and victimization. The pathetic played with wives and their foolish ignorant husbands. The admiring giggles at its obvious madness and hypocrisy. The great brags it makes and its everlasting endeavor to prove itself innocent, true, and superior. The over righteous fathers, friends, and champions pleading their cause. Everytime they warned you, you went back to evil to hear his side. You almost saw the truth. But you choose to believe the lie. To believe that something you wanted to be real so badly, something that you needed to be real was when it wasn’t. When you first saw it you knew it was bad, wrong, disgusting and you needed to escape, but you convinced yourself. Gave it the very excuses it used with you, made for it the lies it used to win you. Why? Because you needed something you couldn’t find, because you played with the fire before, evil was something you never faced for what it was but something that you had grown to know, something that had hurt you deep. A pain that you trusted, a pain that was familiar. But your body knew, it wouldn’t let you completely surrender. It knew that the nasty smoked filled lungs that kissed and forced you to cover over its nasty smell with alcohol was not for you. Somehow you would never accept that evil was your final choice.
But somehow unknown circumstances and forces set you free, how did you become so fortunate? You are the victim type, the one that let’s yourself be played, the prey to the hunter. You are nothing special, only the victim that brought on the obsession, so how did you escape? Because the truth is that unless you remove yourself from the con, and the lie you can never possibly see the truth. Once you are out you can see it so clearly, watch evil reenact all its devices and machinations all over again. I guess the entertainment world warns us when it portrays and plays out all the sadistic things that people think and do. Sadly you didn’t heed the warnings, the subtle hints in the world’s creative outlets that show all facets of the human soul. You ignored the blatant real-life proof of the others who the evil touched. Then you watched as evil used the lies to portray them as crazy, washed-up, drunk, jealous and manipulative turned on you. Now you were the crazy one. That’s when evil smacked you with an unexpected left hook right in the face; you suddenly had a full realization of truth and could see it for what it truly was. Of everything you had with it nothing was real, nothing was true. You were no longer the special one the different one that made evil look better, evil found its new partner, because you refused to play it’s game.
The funny thing is evil keeps all its trophies. Boasts of its triumphs. Actually tells you of its insatiable greed and lust and what it hopes to get from its current victims, how it could share the gain with you. Make you like itself, its lover. Warns you that it will try to come back for you when the current victim is used up unless you want to play with him and his current willing victims now. Evil wants everyone.So technically no one has to fall for it. Actually sometimes evil just finds itself. Evil starts out with lies and excuses then it finally says so what and makes sure you’re the crazy one. It collects pieces of its victims, personal intimate details that it shares and uses to its own advantage to weaken the minds of those that surrounds it. Interestingly evil doesn’t hide this filthiness it lets you find it and tries to make you a part of it, make you believe you’re the cause of it. Makes you wonder if evil believes its own lies. It titillates, and satisfies the curiosity seekers. It’s a car wreck, the twisted violated, innocent, and not so innocent, the damaged and the causalities. It’s all horrible but somehow you were fascinated and you couldn’t look away.
Once you’ve played with evil there is nothing that you can do. You can't be friends with it, and try to look for the good, because there is none. You are corrupted in some way. It touched you and you are tainted. You can just be grateful that you have the choice to walk away. Let it fester and leak its own putrid puss all over its self and whoever it touches next. Shake off the dirt and dust- heal your own wounds. Just remember it will always try to stab you, suck you back in, use its evil twisted lies to make you look bad, to corrupt and convince who it is touching now, and who it will touch next. Just be happy you know the truth, the evil is gone, and be aware the next time it shows its ugly face.
When There.com closed it's door on March 9th 2010 for many it felt like the world was ending. And it was, at least the virtual world they had grown to love and express themselves in. There.com was different, it wasn't like any other online community or game. It was a real home to a group that calls themselves "Thereians" or "Therian's". This online community has a spirit~ a determination to stick together, to be together, and back then a single goal to find a virtual home to replace the one they lost. When There first closed it was chaos, tears and denial. People were displaced very much like people lost after a natural disaster or a devastating war. All they could do was stay together and hope to see their world or another world like There again. It was a natural course for people to gather at places like Thumdar.com which saw rises in activity and other There inspired websites. But the biggest gathering of Thereians and the biggest impact was on Facebook, an online net-working site.
Facebook was flooded with people who had names with There and their former avatar in it. People who hadn't made a facebook account for There made one and began to suddenly add anyone that was from there.com. Other virtual sites saw this as potential. Thousand's of people begging Michael Wilson to re-open there.com in many ways, ranging from gratefulness, anger, threats, and outright desperation to have their virtual home back, looked like a potential market to other virtual worlds. The recruiting began. Personally I was offered monies to "represent" a virtual world. I listened to the CEO of a virtual site ask me if I would write for and represent them as softlydreaming. Another group wanted to buy my "likeness". I was stunned, and so hurt my world was gone, I basically told them the truth. No matter what they offered me it would not be there.com, so no thank you. I mourned There, I cried, I wanted the impossible, for There to be back.
Some Thereian's accepted offers and tried to make a new There for us. I looked at those sites and hoped too. Call me cynical or insightful but I couldn't embrace them. I wanted to be with therians, not just some, but ALL of them and no other world could offer me that. I will say I enjoyed venturing into other worlds and meeting fellow Thereians. I went into second life a total of three times and was shocked at the Therians I met who instantly bonded to me and any other person from There.com that crossed their world. In Second Life Thereians made duda beach, There t-shirts and everything else they could think of to make themselves feel like they were back in the virtual home they missed. Eventually I stopped being nostalgic, stopped crying, stopped pouring over memories and moved on to make my own virtual life. Even so when I met a Thereien in a new game or world there was an instant bond. It was a family, being home feel something no other world could offer.
Why is There.com so different? Was it the safeguards? The fact that you could publicly demand recourse for griefing? The amazing creative ability, the fact the community had its' own voice? The paintball, buggy racing? Or that the cartoon avatar's seemed real as if they were just a part of you? It's hard to understand why There is so different that people are so willing to fight for it, to fight for it's spirit. Ask anyone from There who made another world their home. It's not the same. Whether it's the walking dead like feel with danger around the corner of Second Life or the kiddie feel of Onverse or outrage of world's that promise to be There but never open, nothing is a real substitute for There.com....
Hmm' it seems I spent my entire THERE existence as the other-half of a virtual couple. When I was fresh in THERE only a few weeks I met Percy and had my own personal guide to there.com,we ended up being in a friendship/relationship that lasted almost my whole experience in THERE. Living 1000's of miles apart (Boston to London) THERE was our world. After THERE ended we ended. Now THERE is back and Percy is happy with his new fiance' (congratz btw) and I'm standing in THERE wondering what to do with myself. Well now I know what the "Happening Now" schedule is for! Turns out RaceSmart is having a party, I love driving so that sounds great. It's at BambooCrater Xtreme 4x4 Park...oooh Tuv's. Looking at the party go-ers profiles I saw many in a club called guinea pigs. Right now we all are Beta Testers because the world isn't fully open. But people like RaceSmart beta tested as soon as THERE2 started getting ready. She was amazed and grateful to be chosen, and her and Zip (living in the same house) saw it all first hand and got to share exciting bits with us.RaceSmart talked more about Beta-testing before the Gold Fun Passes got in. She was surprised at the ones that were exclusively chosen to participate, but felt the choices represented a wide variety of Theriens and were well made. They ranged from people like virtual site owner Thumdar, moviemaker/gameshow host Francis_7, to her friend who said: I can't believe they picked me all I do is paintball. At the party people also discussed compasses (you have to download b-boy...Bedican that's the one). I told them I didn't have one. Go to Thumdar.com you'll find everything you need I was told. More people showed up including Korben who took me for wild ride on the track, including getting stuck in the JND platform which he said always happens. lol' Just when I thought the party was over Korben took me to paint the THERE town red (or purple you might say). We played Crack when I said I never did before and met up with a lot of Theriens, and the night was so much fun, one of the best I spent in THERE, so good thing I found out what was "Happening Now"!
Party with RaceSmart telling us that after a while people didn't know if it was her or Zip talking. Doh'
I logged into THERE really late last night, the only time I can get in it seems. I tried a few times earlier and got the world is full message. drat' I looked at the remarkable amount of running events but nothing caught my eye. Suddenly excited, I'll finally arrange my inventory! I stood on a deserted ~ so I thought ~ mountain in the middle of no- there, starting the long tedious task of going through my things. I didn't get very far when suddenly I saw what seemed to be right out of the new Transformers movie I recently saw a giant robot coming right for me. I was actually shocked. lol' So suddenly I was face to face with maverickfred and this colorful Aussie took me out of my inventory doldrums right into a THERE adventure. Wow what a time! phew'
Surprised by maverickfred!
Last night I saw some of the building you can do and why even when you think there is nothing to do in THERE your wrong. THERE is full of wonder and surprise. On the way to Fred's layout we passed by the White House by next3d and even though I accidentally fell out of the robot it was nice to see it's amazing detail again. Fred's place was a down-under spectacle. Kangaroos welcomed us with waterfalls and Santa Claus. Fred remarked it was a little early for the Christmas stuff but as he explained and showed me what he built I could see how much fun he really has in THERE. At the end we met who he called "the ladies" who were all playing cards. They weren't too surprised to see me. They thought my Cheetah outfit was sooo cute and that Fred knew everyone- just like Michael Wilson. What a night, truly satisfied.. I logged off to drift away to Kangaroo dreams of THERE down-under and all the places I have yet to explore.