Hail to the Chief

Blimey! What a time to get the call to step back into the editor’s chair, a week away from perhaps the most important US Presidential election of my lifetime -and I’m not even American.

ella-hillary_001b

ella-trump_001b

ella-office_001b

SLN2 will not be making any comment on the Presidential election. While its outcome will have an effect right around the world, I don’t think it’s my place to get involved either way. It’s a decision to be made by Americans, and respected by the rest of us.

I found (and find) it incredibly annoying when a variety of non-Brits feel they have to stick their tuppence worth into our own ‘Brexit’ referendum (we voted to leave the EU back in June). I had a view on that, which I aired, as I was directly involved in that, but the sight of various non-Brits lining up was vexing in the extreme, so SLN2 will definitely be absent in making comment.

I note that -just as Brexit did for us- the debate rages, and many people have engaged in politics, which has spilled over into SL, with both the Clinton and Trump camps having a campaign presence within SL.

Now that I appear to be back in a bigger role than anticipated, I’d like to pay tribute to Trine’s work as editor over the past year, taking on the blog at a time when things were very much in a state of flux. We survived the upheavals, and I hope we’ll now try to continue to bring all manner of naturist related news, on and off the grid, as well as trying to get back to our core values of focusing on the many great sim builders and providers who bring us our naturist venues in SL.

Ella

 

Fecundity

Is there something about working for SLN2 that makes us more fertile???? 🙂

Ella stepped down from the role of editor around this time last year as she was pregnant. Pookes recently had a baby. Diane Toxx, who fulfilled the role of photographer for the blog for a while, also gave birth and…now it’s my turn!!!!!

This isn’t something I expected to happen, as having spent my 20s and 30s trying to get pregnant (but, I admit, having a lot of fun trying!) it seemed that my husband and I would not be blessed with children. Finally, after a long wait, we (specifically, I) got IVF treatment and, now just into my 40s, I find I’m pregnant! 🙂 🙂 🙂

trine-sunset2_001b

My ‘bump’ is now beginning to show, and I’m finding that I’m tired a lot of the time..you may have noticed a dropping off of posts in recent weeks from me. I just don’t have the energy for everything.

As a result I will be stepping down from the role of editor, but the good news for you all is that Ella is stepping back into the role now that she has a routine she can work around, so SLN2 should continue seamlessly.

trine-sunset_001b

It’s time to walk off into the sunset -at least for a while. I shall be playing SL as energy levels permit, and will continue to write for SLN2 -again as levels of exhaustion allow- but this is likely to be intermittent. Which is why I’m standing down. The blog needs a regular flow of stories and info, and I don’t have the energy levels required right now. So it’s now ‘goodbye’ from me, but a brief, I hope, sabbatical from writing for SLN2.

Ella resumes editorial duties immediately.

Speak to you all some time in the future.

Trine

We all get older…

Many of my naturist friends are ‘older’ naturists, quite often because when the child-rearing years are over and the nest is empty, people only then discover naturism. Sometimes it represents a little bit of a rebirth for a couple, and there’s a frisson of ‘danger’ or ‘excitement’ about the naturist lifestyle.

It’s not, in genuine naturism anyway, a sexual thing.

Often, the mindset is that people have grown comfortable with their bodies, there’s no real pressure to look young, sexy, lithe or lissome. As the years go by we can accept who we are much more readily than we did at 20, 30 or 40. It means that people 50+ often become debutant naturists.

I’m appalled when I go onto some ‘naturist’ websites where there are sneering comments about how it’s all fat, shrivelled, saggy or wrinkled.

Look at it like this: not everyone is lucky enough to reach their 50s or 60s or beyond. To those who sneer I say this: hope that you, too, can eventually be equally fat, shrivelled, saggy or wrinkled.

Mature naturists bring their own beauty to naturism, often vivacious and fun loving in a manner younger naturists (or even their own younger selves) don’t possess.

In Second Life the emphasis is on being young and lithe -even if the age of the avatar’s user is beyond 50- to the extent that mesh clothing or mesh avatars limit the potential to be an older (or plus sized) avatar.

There are numerous older avatar skins, but they’re prohibitively expensive (an accusation that can also be levelled at black or Asian skins).

The concept seems to be that we can’t, should we choose to do so, make ourselves older (or successfully plus sized) avatars. Which is a pity. A reflection on human diversity would benefit Second Life, rather than it be a world which is, it often seems, a world of white youth.

mature-female_001b

mature-male_001b

female-mature_001b

I’m delighted to be surrounded by SL users who’ve been in SL much longer than I have and have made friends with a wide range of (naturist) avatars, some who do adopt an older look, and believe me, their evident age becomes a little bit of a conversation magnet. Some remember naturism in the 1960s and 1970s and, when engaged on the topic, are vivid raconteurs whose memories are wonderful, important oral history for anyone interested in  the history of naturism.

Here at SL we’ll be undertaking ‘older avatar’ month from Monday, and sporadically throughout November. I can’t say that we’re awash with older looking naturist avatar friends, but we’ll be undertaking interviews with them throughout the month, and also trying to discover why they’ve adopted older avatars within SL.

And we’ll be trying to discover what is, so far, a rumour, but one we’ve heard repeated more than once -that one of SL’s naturist venues ‘discourages’ the presence of older avatars because it doesn’t match the image they try to maintain for their sim.

Trine

Pookes (an update)

I know that some of you have asked the whereabouts of Pookes in recent months, as she bowed out with me around this time last year when I announced my pregnancy and the need to see that through without the distraction of SLN.

What I knew then, but didn’t announce at the time, was that Pookes -or Eva as some of us know her in real life- was jetting off to Jamaica for Christmas with her long-term partner, Leeroy, and meet his family.

pookes-couple_001bI’m delighted to say that Eva has just returned (briefly, for now, if my personal experience has anything to do with it) to SL to report the birth of her and Leeroy’s first child, Lauren.

‘Leeroy and I have been together for 14 years’, Pookes reports in an email to me, ‘and we eventually stopped using contraception because I was told, a long time ago, that it was unlikely I could ever have children…a situation I’d resigned myself to long ago. After a decade of no contraception, and no pregnancy, it appeared the medical prognosis was correct.

‘Leroy’s elderly grandmother, now 90 and one of the main reasons we travelled to Jamaica, so I could meet the woman who partly raised him, told me that children were a blessing and did some sort of ‘charm’ thing on me, telling me the ‘curse’ of childlessness had been lifted. I didn’t believe a word of it, yet went along with what I thought was a charade. I was humouring an old lady, in my mind. Believe it or not, I was pregnant before we came home!!!! And to the best of my knowledge, the conception probably happened with us naked on a beach at Negril!!. You have to embrace the naturist lifestyle where you can, El! At the age of 34 I thought that my likelihood of becoming a mother was a ship long sailed, even without the fertility issues I’d faced a decade before. I’m ecstatically happy!!!!

‘We shall now be going back again at Christmas, even though we can’t really afford it as we’re currently moving home from London to Brighton, to show off the baby that Grandma made happen’.*

pookes-couple2_001b

(Pookes partner posed by one of our mutual SL avatar friends)

Best wishes to the new family, and Pookes has promised (as I did when I exited a year ago) to try and come back to SL whenever a routine has been established (it takes longer to establish than you think…and I had two previous experiences of it).

The family are in the process of moving out of London to Brighton, on England’s south coast, so it’s an exceptionally busy time for them…don’t expect Pookes to return in the immediate future!

Ella

*a section of Pookes email has been reproduced with her permission.

 

Vintage Season 2016 : Beach Balls

The perception once was, and remains to some degree, that naturists play(ed) with beach balls. I’ve never actually seen a real life naturist with such an item, but I’ve seen photos from various eras that reinforce this myth.

beach-ball

beach-ball2

Of course, it wasn’t always the case that the beach ball was a naturist ‘must have’ item, rather that it could provide a suitable prop to hide certain aspects of the body -genitalia particularly.

9a24e8fd8835bb03ad70d1a291c25219

Breasts were ‘ok’ as this cover from Health & Efficiency magazine, a title that introduced several generations to the concept of naked people in mixed company. It’s something of a British institution, or was until the internet came along.

health-and-efficiency-magazine-october-1958-vintage-sun-001

It was necessary to be deliberately coy with imagery, with the front cover from 1958, above, demonstrating that no nudity was possible. It may be that the seemingly ‘retrograde’ step over the course of the 1950s had much to do with H&E maybe making the leap from under the newsagent’s counter to being on ‘the top shelf‘ of his magazine racks.

Harry has been out with model Abbey, and captured her utilising a beach ball for ‘prop’ purposes (priced at L$50 on the Marketplace).

beachball_001b

beachball2_001b

Using the same prop set, and a bit of Photoshop work, he has also recreated a late 1950s front cover from Health & Efficiency.

he-complete

 

The magazine now has an online presence, but the content can’t be read without a subscription.

Note, given the context in which I’m writing this blog entry, that the magazine is also selling a ‘nostalgia’ type calendar for 2017 in which images, such as those we’ve used above, and tried to replicate, are reproduced.

Ella