Remembering the recently lost

Today I’ll write this post, one I wish I wouldn’t have to write. In the past two weeks, two people from my Plurk timeline have died. They’re Thorn and Amy, the former I knew only superficially, and the latter I knew a bit better.

Thorn

Thorn (Greg Thornhill) died two weeks ago, rather unexpected. He had an untreated ear infection, ended up in the ER. From what I’ve understood, his infection spread to parts of his brain and eventually claimed his life. It may been different if he’d entrusted his infection to a doctor, but alas, things have happened now.

I wish I could make this section about him longer, however, I did not know him well enough. I never met him on the grid, only exchanged words on Plurk. He was always kind and others speak well of him. Ironically, one of his last plurks was a replurk for an action set up to cheer Amy, who’s the other subject of this post.

Related links:
Thorn’s last plurk
Announcement of Thorn’s passing on Facebook

Amy

Amy (Amy Nauman) was a young girl, 26, who was faced with returning cancer. In-world she was known as Scarlet Chandrayaan, owner of the store called Alouette. I only met her late, around the time she announced that she was going to die on a short term. Which I now realize was only three weeks ago—it seems like ages ago. I knew her store, but not her story. Four days ago, she passed away after cancer got the better of her.

Her death is a bitter one. She was clearly full of life, kind, glass half-full, in no way ready to die. Her life turned unfair, when instead of going to move out and live with her boyfriend, she had to undergo months of treatment. On Plurk I saw just how many people she moved and what kind of attitude she had. I can only conclude that we need more people like this lady in the world.

I’m gutted by her death, because of so many reasons. I’m sure those we knew her are also feeling it. She was strong till the end, carried her disease and impending death with grace. I don’t know how she did it, but it’s left me in awe. Only in her last week or so (might be a bit earlier) she started mentioning she cried a lot. Maybe because she felt that this time she wouldn’t win her battle with cancer.

What broke my heart was not only her own determination to live, but also reading what concerned her. First there was story about her brother, who was gutted when he learned that the doctors only gave her a short time to live. Then her being so relieved she managed to arrange insurance, so she wouldn’t leave her family in debt due to her medical bills. Finally, her being present to show on a gorgeous picture with her brother and his prom date, despite this being a physical challenge. She clearly cared much for her family.

In the last weeks she shared these things about what she liked. Cooking, decor. A couple times I saw her mention “when I get stronger”. I never could suppress the thought that most likely she’d never be able to do these things. I’m not sure about everyone else, but there was no doubt in my mind she was going to die, not even hope. Since she had these many crying moments, I wonder if she didn’t feel that too.

It’s been only three weeks since I actively started following her and I didn’t think I’d be hit so hard by someone I hardly knew, and only for such a short term. Yet to me she’s a symbol to strength and I admire her enormously. I’ve also realized she’s only two yours older than I am and about the age of my BF too. Way too young.

She never got to move out properly. She’ll never complain about “becoming 25 for the fifth time, geez I’m old”. Never become a mother (not sure if she wanted this, but still). She’ll never have to bury her parents, as is the natural order of things. She won’t finish these items she still wanted to create, cook the recipes she wanted to make, move aside her collection of mugs and convince anyone there really is enough room for more. She’ll never enlighten us again with her positive attitude.

To stick to Amy’s spirit, I’m pressed to add a positive spin to this. and this is hard. I don’t know Amy well, but I think she wouldn’t want us to be sad. I think she’d be happy that she got her medical bills covered and that she had so many people who cared for her. And maybe also, that her battles and pain are now over. And in the latter, those of us who stay behind, can hopefully find a bit of peace and solace.

Tonight, about 2PM–4PM SLT, there will be a memorial service for Amy at her store Alouette. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to join, but if you’re able, please go there.

Related links:
Amy’s last plurk
Announcement of Amy’s passing on Plurk
Amy announcing her short life expectancy on Plurk

Final note

I’ve been an atheist all my life. To me, there is no “rest in peace”, no “(s)he is in a better place now”. For me there’s only the knowledge that one’s body will be returned to the earth and recycled by nature. This is my take on the afterlife and resurrection. I therefore cannot use these words to comfort those left behind. I can only hope that everyone finds a healthy way to deal with his or her loss.

I’m sure those who have passed would not want us to mourn their deaths forever. In the end, we all must move on, hopefully with good memories in our thoughts. We might not physically be able to interact with a person anymore, but their being in our lives have affected us. It’s up to us to keep the memory alive and keep their spirit with us.

I wish everyone, especially family and close friends of the deceased, much strength in dealing with your loss. May your combined strength help you through the hardest days, and may your combined memories strengthen the bond you share.

And you really don’t need all those system layers either

This is an addendum to my previous post.

Before mesh, there were system layers. And like with attachment points, we often got identical items on different layers. Shirts on both underwear (tucked) and upper wear (untucked) and jacket layer, for example.

Most of the older sets are candidate for removal from your inventory. If you want to keep an item in however (I keep some), at least get rid of the extra layers. You can box them for example. I keep only the most relevant and complete layer of an item, like the jacket layer of a top.

While I have my inventory quite under control, I’ve noticed in the past two days that this is an area where I can still gain a massive inventory profit. One of the sets I tossed out contained 80 (80!) system layers in total.

Inventory count now: well below 18k and still going down!

Toss out items with different attachment points

If you’re “old” like me (ugh, eighth rezday in two days), you’ve likely experienced a time where the attachment points you used actually mattered. In those days, you could wear one item per attachment point and that was it, no “add”.

Many creators were nice enough to bless us with multiple identical versions of their product, for different points. Most famously: necklaces came in chest and spine versions.

We don’t need those different versions anymore. So try to find them and delete them. I’m backing up every set I have, and then delete what I don’t need. So when it comes to necklaces: chest in, spine out. Easy win!

Distinguish face and body tattoos in your inventory

This simple technique I’ve just “developed” (it’s really nothing, just can’t find the right word) because I’m lost in my ever-growing folder of tattoos by White Widow.

The above mentioned store has both face and body tattoos and sets contain either one of both. Since I can’t really distinguish them by name, I’ve decided to simply tag the folders in a similar way to how I tag appliers.

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Passwords and your browser

Hello everyone, this time a post about something not specially related to Second Life. Today’s topic: how your browser can show your saved passwords.

In this article I use several internet browsers for Mac OS X Mavericks as an example. While most of you will be using Windows, there will be little to no differences between the browsers per operating system. At this moment I am unable to check the exact differences however, nor can I check out Internet Explorer.

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