Today I have changed. I started the day looking like a stylised / idealised version of me, and one that I was happy to use – though I did feel a little drab in my simple outfit compared to some of the beautiful creations I saw wafting around in period dress with luxuriant wings and gothic–looking frock-coats! I made a backup copy of my avatar and proceeded to make it look more like the RL me. Immediately I didn’t like her. I felt frumpy, old, baggy and unable to interact with anyone for fear of them thinking I was a dull, boring and middle-aged. I hid in a Swiss Chalet then received a request for a live chat…which I declined.
What do these rather negative adjectives mean? That I perceive the real me to be all of the above? Old, frumpy and dull? Why did I waste no time after posting the required “before and after” photos to the required blogs and flickr group in changing my appearance for the final time? I now resemble a “wish list” version of me: young-looking, wrinkle-free, slimmer, and, bizarrely, taller. Oh, and with a remarkable (though not intentional) resemblance to Kate Bush!
I really like who my avatar has become. She’s a confident, attractive and enigmatic. She has all the qualities I don’t (including a healthy pallour and the ability to apply eyeshadow correctly). I can live vicariously through her in a virtual world, which may be a little sad. I didn’t realise that signing up for this would mean the need to find a therapist!