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Showing posts with label swimming. Show all posts
Showing posts with label swimming. Show all posts

Thursday, July 28, 2022

Shark Week At LeLoo's World- Stacey Cardalines Reporting...


Summer is known for her iconography, things like beach days, cookouts, fireworks, parades, baseball and so forth. It is also known for Sharks, 

Sharks- unfairly- are summer's main Villain. A shark could kill you in a blizzard if you crossed paths, but you are more likely to run into Mr. Toothy during the summer months, when you are swimming. This sort of ties Summer and Sharks together. That's why the Discovery Channel does Shark Week in July, and it's why LeLoo's World is currently doing Shark Week.

I talked to LeLoo for a while, forgot to ask her what the sim does the rest of the year (I know she does some Halloween stuff, which I will check out at a future date), but we can get to that later. People like LeLoo, who have an interest and start building that interest into an actual sim, are who make SL go. What she is doing now is Shark Week. LeLoo is a shark lover, and she gives the sim over to the Fish Fatale every July. She expects to leave the sim up for about three weeks, so get to steppin'.

Sharks predate man, predate Moses, and at least some ancestor of theirs probably ate a dinosaur. They are, as Dr. Hooper described them, a perfect engine. They swim, eat, f*ck... nothing else. There will never be Shark Culture, Shark Science, Shark Economics... they are not in the running for Species Most Likely To Create Space Shuttles. Sharks have little need for all that stuff humans worry about, which is a shame because they'd really enjoy all the attention and celebrity that they get on the Discovery Channel. They just hang out and chow. Very few sharks right now are saying, "I haven't written anything for a month, Lanai is going to fire me."

Sharks and humans should never meet. Humans aren't designed for the water, and we only move through water with great difficulty and innovation. We need things like boats, inner tubes, scuba tanks, submarines, flippers, masks and wetsuits. Sharks, who need to be pushing through water in order to breathe, are equally unsuited for the dry land part of the Surf & Turf. Sharks are aware of this, and only come ashore by accident. Humans, on the other hand, figured out ways to survive in the water. Sharks, just by doing what they do, disturb that equation.

Humans pretty much run the planet, and are the masters of all they survey. That gets a bit touchy if a tiger or a cobra is around, but that's why the gods made guns and Rikki Tikki Tavi. For the most part, humans can avoid being killed by animals if they avoid areas that Lions or Crocodiles hang out. However, you can get Offed by doing something as simple as swimming, and it doesn't matter if you are swimming under the lights of New York City if a shark comes around. In fact ("fact" in this case means "legend,"), the first white guy eaten by a shark in America was killed in the Hudson River.

An American can laugh off a bear attack as a deep forest thing. They can laugh off alligator attacks as a Florida thing. But we all like to go to the beach, and we all like to go swimming. When we do that, we sacrifice our place at the top of the food chain. Humans don't do that too often, and the psychological effect is profound.

The Discovery Channel does not devote a week to people getting hit by lightning, although- according to the stats I'm looking at- you are 50 times more likely to die from a lightning strike than a shark attack. Come to think of it, I'd watch a show where it was just people getting hit by lightning, so maybe that's a bad example. 

OK, you are 800 times more likely to die of Extreme Cold. Aside from people who live in alligator country and want to laugh back at Yankees who laughed at them getting snatched by a crocodile, very few viewers would tune in to watch a week of programming devoted to people freezing to death. It would be a week of basically the end of The Shining. Freezing people just sit still and freeze, if you were clicking by and saw a show on it, you'd think the video broadcast had seized up. Bad for ratings. No Va.

There are at least some years where more people are killed by a vending machine toppling over onto them as they try to shake a Snickers loose than are killed by sharks. There is no sim on SL devoted to vending machines falling over onto people. I know... I checked. I'd also watch a show about that, but we're near the end of the tangent.

Freezing to death, getting hit by lightning or having a Coke machine fall on you, while killing you as dead as a shark would, won't eat you afterwards. That fact, plus the shark's basic Jungian archetypical role as America's Dragon, propel them into Superstardom.

Shark Week at LeLoo's World is a fun visit. It is a beach scene, although my Cape Codder beach radar tells me "Atlantic Canada" for some je-ne-sais-quoi reason. You can very easily spend a pleasant SL beach day here without even being interested in sharks, I posed with two sandcastle snowmen and floated on an inflatable shark which didn't try to eat me. One thing I learned as a wandering reporter is that sim design should have a main theme, like Sharks, but should also have a basic background blueprint, like Atlantic Canada. This sim nails that. It is a perfectly normal beach... with a deadly twist.

If the editors include the picture with me, the shark and the surfboard, know that I spent quite some time trying to flip from shore onto that surfboard for a more effective, close up shot. I was a cheerleader for the SLCS for a while, and I was- and am- very good at the flipping part. I can pretty much flip up onto any surface, and land on a dime. I'm known for it in the circles in which I travel. I could not stick that jump. I tried 25 times, each failure dunking me about 20 feet deep in the ocean. I had to walk out, too. I couldn't just flip back onto shore. The surfboard was about a half meter further than my best leap, even with a running start. Pissed me off... but that's not the sim's fault.

The other stupid thing I did was try the Dunk Tank. This is the basic carnival dunk tank, where you throw a ball at a target and dunk the person sitting over the water tank. This may be a Massachusetts thing, but this is a job usually handled by an insult comic in a clown suit at all the carnivals I go to. "Try to drown the rude, rude clown." However, at Shark Week, the water tank has a shark in it. I was by myself on this assignment, so I couldn't throw the ball while concurrently sitting on the dunking platform. I offered a fellow visitor 100 Ls if she'd sit there while I dunked her, but she declined.

I did sit on the platform (I nailed that flip), and even dropped into the tank for a picture with the shark that came out so well that I declined to use it. I jumped back on the platform, and then jumped off the platform afterwards. Too late to stop myself, I realized that I was emulating Fonzie. I was jumping the shark. I always knew that day would come, but the sudden self-realization was like a hammer blow.

Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Taking a splash at Splash Aquatics -Stacey Cardalines Reporting


If you explore SL enough, you see just about everything. You can see amazing things, like a 200-foot gorilla or a space alien, but you also see mundane things, like streams and rocks and fish. You may or may not stop to ponder things like "Who on SL has a job where he makes crayfish all day?" Well, there is someone who devotes time to such things, perhaps several someone. With that in mind, let's have a look at Splash Aquatics.

I think Splash may run a water park that I have covered before, but that is just a coincidence. Stacey Cardalines doesn't do Pay For Play. If you own a sim, have money, and want proof, just contact me at and make an offer. You can see either the ceiling or the floor of my integrity as a journalist... perhaps even both if we haggle some.

I'd go to Splash even if they weren't throwing me a little cake on the side because Splash Aquatics is really cool. They specialize in aquatic things, ranging from fish to birds to lizards to ponds. If you own a sim, want some fish and water on it, and were wondering where you'd get stuff like that, the answer is Splash Aquatics.

Splash is set up in a circular pattern, and you can run a lap around the place easily enough. They have stuff for sale, and stuff aimed more at immediate entertainment. It's not a bad business model. They sell fish and water and allow you to play in the water with the fish before you walk to the part of the sim where you buy water and fish. You get to see the goods, then purchase them if you are impressed. However, you can go to Splash without even an ounce of intent towards buying something and still have fun.

I started at the landing zone, then checked out some ducks. I like ducks. "Duck" is a cute word, even if rhymes with the F-Bomb. "Mother duck" is cute, and that also rhymes with one of the 7 Words. My immediate thought was "If I owned a home here on SL, I'd have a duck pond," a reaction which is probably what Splash was aiming for. The ducks are the pastoral, quiet ducks. I think making them like Daffy or Donald would be a copyright violation, and might lead to cartoon-like scenarios where the duck orders something from ACME and causes an explosion in your otherwise tranquil duck pond.

The next stop was a Swimming Pool area, where they showed off a few pools. The chlorine keeps the wildlife out of the pool, which is good at a sim that sells alligators and sharks. "Spend 10 grand on installation, then die in it when a Moray Eel migrates into it from the Deep Sea part." That seems unlikely, but one of the Jaws movies had the shark-eating people at Sea World, so it is indeed plausible. I think the shark also retched up Michael Caine in one of the Jaws movies, but that didn't happen at Splash and is thus some other journalist's problem.

I then got to the coolest part of the park, which is a Deep Sea section. You can see me posing in the Megalodon jaws at the entrance in one of the accompanying pictures. I'd just be an appetizer to that shark, who most likely ate giant squid and whales. I'd be a mozzarella stick or a Bloomin' Onion to that shark. That was the only pose they had, I'd have tried harder there, but it might be cute with a child or tourist avatars. They have a few exhibits, with sharks, whales, and rays. The fun part is the Underwater Tunnel, which goes into an aquarium. We took a few pics in there. They have Moray Eels, Barracuda, Whales, Nemo fish, and a whole bunch of other fish. They had something in a cave that I couldn't identify but had tentacles. It had a Lovecraftian appearance that I wished to distance myself from.

Ballsier people can use the Dive Tank, which puts you in the water with these things. You can enjoy Aquaman's basic lifestyle, minus the Superhero stuff. No scuba gear needed, I was wearing a dress. Nothing attacks you, which is a change for me, especially when I wear a dress. It's a small tank, but they have it loaded with fish and you can kill some time in there.

You can also get on the roof, which has a garden and overlooks the Fishing Lake. I snuck a shot of two random people fishing, because of reasons. Stacey doesn't Ask, no, she Takes. They didn't catch anything while I was watching them, but that happens a lot in real life with my husband, so I assume that SL Fishing is aimed that way. As the Sports and Leisure editor here since 2009 or so, I can tell you that I have been dodging an article on SL Fishing since 2009 or so. I'll get to it someday, which will be ironic because I often wait for my husband to go fishing before I play SL. I will at that point be avoiding real-life fishing to go cartoon fishing, and that sounds four kinds of strange.

From there, you can slide over to the Aquarium section. This is more where you buy aquariums more than visit them. They also sell the fish, plants, and ornaments that go into them. I didn't check, but I assume that the aquarium sizes range from "desktop" to "Sea World," but I might be wrong. They definitely have the regular, home-sized aquarium. They also have a few dozen fish that you can load into the tanks, ranging from lobsters to whales and everything in between.

From there, they get to the money-makin' part, where they sell all things that Splash. Waterfalls, sculpted ponds, rivers, fountains, volcanoes, geysers... you name it. The megalomaniac in me likes the idea of owning a river for some reason that I can't define, even for humor if someone is paying me. Some of the ponds have alligators or swans, so be forewarned. They also sell birds, like penguins, swans, and seagulls. I don't know if they have McDonald's on SL somewhere, but if they did, they should buy a few seagulls for the parking lot so you can throw fries to them.

Summer is fading away quickly, and if you try to time your SL to your RL, you might want to get working on that duck pond. Pretty soon, you can skate on that sh*t. I have to start doing Autumn articles, then Winter articles. I may need your pond for a Hockey article.

Friday, March 12, 2021

Taro Islands - Water Fun Stacey Cardalines Reporting

March is probably a bit early for me to visit summery sims, but sometimes even an avatar needs to get away from winter. Spring is close, but not close enough. If you feel that way as well, I have a sim for you.

I feel bad writing about Taro Island's water sports. Taro is actually the name of the sim creator, who I haven't run into yet. "Taro" means "strength" in Japanese. Taro is either Japanese or into Japanese stuff, and the sim reflects it. There are beautiful and detailed pagodas, gardens, lighthouses, and artwork all over the island... and I walked right past it as I headed for the sailboats and the diving board. 

I showed up, as I try to do when practicing journalism, dressed conservatively- dress, hose, heels - but I was in a bathing suit 5 minutes after getting there. All the Japan stuff is cool - I saw much of it when I was taking a balloon ride tour of the premises- but I am the Sports And Leisure editor of the SL Enquirer, and I take the Sports part very seriously. That Japanese aspect of the island can get circled back to later, by our Into Asian Stuff writer. I'm there for Sports. I'm wearing a scuba suit as I type this, in case the reader doubts my hardcore sportswriting credentials.

Taro Island has some fun stuff to play with. I started off at the Diving Board, because if you might die doing journalism, you may as well get it out of the way quickly. I can get a paycheck out of a "Sportswriter Crippled In Diving Accident" article without describing the sim at all, and I can find my way back once my legs are working to pick up a second paycheck at the same sim for a future article. It all went well enough on the diving board, though. As you can see in one of the pictures, I nailed a Swan Dive right where I had my camera aimed. They have a plethora of dives that you can try out, and I'd have shown them to you if it were easier to photograph yourself in motion from a lower height camera angle. I got lucky with my pic of the swan dive.

Next stop? Water slide. The water slide at Taro Island is very much influenced by the corkscrew. I was unable to even get an adequate picture of me doing this, because as hard as it may be to get a picture of yourself in motion off a diving board, it's harder if you are circling down a water slide. Lanai is paying me more because I'm funny and I have a nose for fun sims. I'm a hack photographer. Any good photography I do is fortunate.

You can see the water slide in the background of my windsurfing shot. I got on the windsurfer, easily enough, which is more than I can do in real life. The sports where you go in the water are fun and easy to use. The only complaint I have is that you really can't go offshore too much. I aimed the windsurfer right for some heavy surf I saw on the horizon, but I stopped going forward and started going right 50 meters offshore. It was still a hoot, though... just could have been more of a hoot.

They also have a sailboat, but I didn't try that. The windsurfer did the same stuff, and I looked cooler piloting it around. This is an important consideration when the writer is also the model. I never skip Leg Day, and I like my readers to be aware of this.

I finished off with Scuba Diving, which was the best part. You get a whole scuba suit, you jump on a poseball and it takes you on an underwater tour. You can't control where you go, but based on how I handled the windsurfer, that's probably for the best. They have fish, flora, killer whales, a ruined city and whatever other things you might see underwater.

If that isn't enough for you, might I recommend walking the grounds. It's a good-sized sim, Taro put it together well, and it is very beautiful. It'd make for a lovely walk, and checking out all the little nooks and crannies would eat up a bit of time. I may slink back in a while and tour that part with the camera. I've already mentioned that I love doubling up on paychecks from a single sim. I could probably get another article out of Taro Island. I even have a Kimono.

Either way, I'd strongly recommend checking out Taro Island. I'm Stacey Cardalines, and I am wrapped head to toe in wet neoprene.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Beach Wear for 2013- Tea Couturier Reporting...

With so many beach wear out there it can be hard to pick the right one or even know where to begin looking.

 I have looked around second life stores and little boutiques and created a list of a few pieces I feel not only appeal to budgets but still give you that summery look you are seeking.