Fishing – HOR and G&S Style

The House of Runo is often a busy place and lately things have really picked up.  I’m a little behind in keeping up with everything in fact.  However, we have had a couple of fishing contests hosted by our very own woodsman, Master Hammer!

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Master Hammer hard at work catching those fish!

The fishing contests use G&S products and not only are fun, but also provide G&S products which come in handy in keeping meals interesting at the inn and keeping our G&S production going.  Not only does the fishing provide G&S products, but the prizes are G&S coins, which can then be spent at the inn for meals or at the tavern for fun and drink!

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A line-up of fishermen – even the slaves get a few casts in while dancing!

This wasn’t the first fishing contest and it is sure not to be the last. Everyone seems to have a great time enjoying the camaraderie and seeing who can catch the largest tuna!  To kick off the event we have Rhiannon “Rocking the Docks!”.  Dancing, chatting and fishing… who could ask for more?

 

As with all events at The House of Runo all are welcome to attend.  We love having people join in the fun.  Thank you to Master Hammer for arranging these exciting fishing contests and thank you Rhiannon for “Rocking The Dock”

The Gorean Compass – The Next Generation

As regular readers of this blog know Master Gorm Runo teaches a regular class at the Gorean Campus within Second Life Gor.  He has been offering these classes for a couple of years now and they can be found within this blog under the heading of Gorean Philosophy.

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This year brings a whole new set of classes as Master Gorm Runo explores deeper into the uniqueness which Second Life Gor brings to the Gorean experience.  He will be expounding upon the Gorean Philosophy and how it pertains to our experiences with the realm of Second Life.

As such he decided that a new section should be added to the blog to provide for these new classes.  The old classes are still there under the heading of Gorean Philosophy, so have no fear!  However, these new exciting classes will be found here as we explore and expound into areas where no Second Life Gorean has gone before!  (ok a little cheesy, but you get the picture)

 

Classes are held at the Gorean Campus within Second Life on Thursdays at noon and 6pm Second Life Time which is the same as Pacific Time.  All are welcome to attend and join in the discussions!

January Birthdays

The House of Runo does believe in celebrating birthdays.  Since we are earth people going into Second Life for a Gorean experience, we do still maintain some earth traditions.

When The House of Runo parties they do it in style.  This month two of the slaves had birthdays… Tabi and Rhiannon.  Tabi’s birthday came first.  Rhiannon provided the music using the Caer Cadarn radio stream and the pleasure gardens were decorated up nicely.  It was a good time and everyone had lots of fun.  Unfortunately we don’t have any pictures of the festivities so you’ll have to just use your imagination.

Following tabi’s birthday came Rhiannon’s birthday.  For this party the theme was bugs, specifically ladybugs, but really any kind of bug.  This is because Master’s nickname for Rhiannon is bug.

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Once again the pleasure gardens were decorated up festively.  Everyone who came were supplied with butterfly wings.  Tabi provided the music this time using Goreans Portal Radio and the celebration went out to all of Gor.

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Ladybugs were flying all around and quite a few suggested songs about bugs all to celebrate Rhiannon’s special day.  I think everyone had a good time.  Thank you mari for providing the pictures.

There was also a nicely done table of cake and other confections which Master Gorm Runo couldn’t seem to resist!

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Look to this spot as we continue to celebrate the birthdays and other events all held at Caer Cadarn.  Feel free to come and join in since we feel the more the merrier and our parties and events are open to all!

Gorean Compass – The Game Within The Game

The Gorean Compass is a class given every Thursday by Master Gorm Runo.  Classes are held at the Gorean Campus and are given at noon and 6pm SLT.  All are encouraged to come and join in the amazing discussions.


Tal and greetings,

I usually start a talk like this by going to an online dictionary and posting a definition to give me a focus, but when i went to find a definition of the term “role play”, I was a bit frustrated. I was actually reminded of a rather funny event that took place back on Earth years ago.

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The company where I was employed had begun a formal training program that featured examinations that had to be passed prior to any advancement, and on one of the first tests, I found this interesting question.

1. What is the purpose of the Bearing cooling water system?

I actually struggled over this one for a bit. I wanted to respond with the “duh” answer, but feared it was some sort of trick question. I eventually gave in and wrote:

The purpose of the Bearing Cooling water system is to cool bearings with water.

Which was the correct answer.

I was reminded of this because it appears that the best I could come up with as a definition for Role play was “to play a role.”

After a bit of digging, I feel comfortable dividing role play into three major divisions. First, there is the type that would best described as having a “role” in a play. You assume the attributes of a character that could very well be totally different than how you actually think, act, or feel. The role you play is not you, and in a free form role play situation like happens in, for example, a Second Life role play sim, you have to try to imagine how this character would behave in a given situation.

The second type of role play also puts you in a situation where you are unable to just be yourself, but must assume the attributes and attitudes of someone else. But, this type of role play is a training tool and not an play or story, but rather a training device. For example, you might play the role of an employer dealing with employees, or maybe the opposite sex in a relationship. The purpose of this type of role play is to give you some idea of how someone else might be seeing or dealing with a particular situation.

The third type of role play in totally situational. It puts “you” in a different place and sometimes even a different time and allows you to act out how you might behave. This is also used for training purposes, such as soldiers training.

I remember one such interesting role play from my military days. A large cinderblock city was built. Some of the buildings were four or five stories tall, and my squad was attacking the city, while a rival squad was defending it. We all wore “miles gear” which was a system that used laser beams from our rifles, to trigger an alarm on the gear we wore, indicating we had been hit.

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On this particular day, I was the squad leader and led the attacks on ten different attacks on the city. Some were successful, and some were not, but the common denominator in all the attacks was that I did not “survive” even one of them. No matter how hard I tried, the fact that I was the leader, and giving the orders, and directing the attack, drew the fire of the enemy, and my gear started beeping out the fact I was toast.

My point is that the role play had purpose. It was teaching me some hard truths, and giving me a chance to develop coping skills to deal with them.

In the class last week, we talked about how many people came to second life and saw within it a perfect chance to play a role play game. I called it: playing a game within the game. We admitted that role play games were not the intent of Linden Labs when they introduced Second Life, but rather they were providing a blank platform for people to interact with other people, and a lot of people used that platform to create role play stories and games.

If, indeed, Second Life was a blank platform where users could create whatever they wished to create, they had every right to create whatever they wished, and also, to be whoever they wished to be. The famous saying was: ” It is my Second Life, and I can do whatever i want to do.”

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When I think of the immensity of Second Life and all the different things being done within it, I can see that this approach is fine, and no one can really present any logical arguments against it. But, it was never going to work in Second Life Gor. It was not going to work because online Gor was, from the very beginning, defined more as a community than a game. Its origins were in real people, with an interest in the Gorean novels, interacting and sharing insights with other real people. You could call it a massive fan club that suddenly had the ability to reach like minded people globally.

And when people decided it was going to be a fun venue to play a game within the game, they were faced with the choice of what sort of game they were going to play. Would they approach it like the soldiers attacking the cinderblock city, or would they approach it more like actors in a play. In other words, would they be themselves in a different time and place, or would they be someone else in a different time and place?

The people who selected the first approach adapted a three letter code to identify when they were real and when they not real. They called it OOC. Out of Character. When they were faking it, they were IC, and when they were being themselves, they were OOC. A sensible system that should have worked. But, it didn’t.

What it did was open the door to confusion, predatory behavior, emotional abuse, disappointment, disillusionment, and a divided community that had to continually put warning messages in profiles proclaiming that “remember there are real people behind the keyboard with real feelings and emotions.”

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If Second Life Gorean rp was conducted in a separate place, and engaged in by a group of players fully aware of what they were doing, and why, there would not have been much of a problem. When you walk through a doorway with a warning sign that says “Danger” and you are fully aware of that danger, but chose to play anyway, whatever happens, happens, and you have little room to complain.

But, it never had that separation, and even as we welcomed new people into the community, we did so with no clear message. We were like the blind men describing an elephant based on the part they touched. Some touched the legs, and said an elephant was like a tree, and some touched the trunk and said an elephant was like a snake.

So, new people were going to think Second Life Gor was whatever the first people they encountered claimed it was like based on their own interpretation of it. And as we have pointed out in this seminar, a majority of people were coming to Gor for the original reasons. They were seeking like minded people who understood the powerful emotions involved in the message John Norman was presenting in the novels.

And because of this conflict in intent and motivation, OOC often became an excuse for people to engage in the most despicable type of behavior. It was the predators excuse. “Oh, I am not really a lying evil asshole mind fucking some submissive for kicks. It is just RP.”

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As long as I have been in online Gor, there has been a conflict between those called lifestylers and those called role players. At times, it is has been bitter and uncompromising. It has led to a shattered and splintered community and disappointed and frustrated people.

The problem is that neither of those words has any cognitive meaning anymore. Everyone who says “lifestyle” means something a little different by it, and everyone who says rp’er means something a little different by it. And thus neither word means anything other than what it’s user intends it to mean, and it has no value as communication.

It is my opinion that the only long term solution to this is to accept the idea that if we want to “play a role, and be someone we are not, just for fun”, we need to do it somewhere else. The Gorean ethos is all about the idea that we are who and what we are, and we should be busy discovering the truth and reality of it, and trying to be true to that. The idea that we can be who we want to be is the modern mantra of Earth society and it is the Anti-Gor.

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Coming to online Gor, and reading the books carefully, and then pretending to be someone totally different than yourself makes as much sense as role playing Policemen by robbing banks, or role playing soldiers by attacking your own homes. It is the total opposite of what Gor has to offer and what it is trying to teach.

Second Life is, by definition, all role play. We are not our avatars, and we are not running around Gor. We are in an alternative universe, and that is an amazing thing in itself.. If we want to continue to grow, and if we want to gain benefits from our participation, and even if we want to have real fun, we need to come here as ourselves , real people behind our keyboards, but interacting in a different place, and a different time.

If your idea of fun is deceiving people and pretending to be something you are not and have no chance of ever becoming, then you should be seeking your fun elsewhere.

The problem is how do we enforce this? How do we establish and maintain community standards of any kind. Is it even possible to do so? Is Second Life already too much a reflection of everything wrong with Earth, of everything the Gorean novels were trying to tell us of how we were going astray? Is it really possible to create a Counter-Earth?

House of Runo – Tharlarion Racing

As many know the House of Runo has been very involved in Tharlarion Racing within Second Life Gor.  This month was an exciting month for the HOR.  Both Rhiannon and Tabi have been in the pros division for many months.  However, this month we had the chance to add 2 more riders from the HOR Racing Team to the pro division.

Thais qualified to move up into the pros this month after having raced in the amateur division for the past month.  However, there was a 3-way tie from the amateurs for the second person who was going to move up into pros – Master Gorm, tiggy and hips all three tied!  This meant we needed to have a tie-breaker and to do this there was a 3 race elimination run.   Watch the action here!

Each rider won a race – Hips won the first race, Master Gorm won the second race, tiggy won the third race.  However, when all the points were added up Hips ended up with the most points and it will be Hips moving on to the pro division.  Congratulations to hips and sending out encouraging thoughts to Master Gorm Runo and tiggy… maybe next month!

Oh and Happy New Year from the House of Runo!!

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