I went to Misfit Ghetto last night and saw this sign. It comes from Robert Lowell who said “The light at the end of the tunnel is just the light of an oncoming train.” Robert Lowell has been a favorite since I first discovered him in 7th grade. I was shy, a mumbler, constantly admonished to speak louder and my mother made me join the speech team. She believed in meeting challenges head on. I chose Extemporaneous Poetry as my specialty since I loved poetry and my mom made me memorize a poem a week. I figured I could get two for one out of the way.
For my first competition I drew “For the Union Dead” by Robert Lowell. The imagery bowled me over and I fell in love with his way of writing, though the poem was not without its problems for my 7th grade self. It used the n-word once, in quotes to indicate that was not a word Lowell would have used. It was a word I had never used and was certainly not acceptable. I had thirty minutes to prepare an introduction and decide how to address this dilemma. I punted and inserted the word soldiers instead. You know, as an adult, I think the person who picked the poems that day probably had not read them.
But also, from hindsight, I don’t mind, because that poem was thrilling to me. If you have seen the film Glory, you know the story memorialized in the statue he describes. But it was not the story, it was the images from phrases like his nose crawling like a snail on the aquarium glass and the yellow dinosaur steamshovels grunting as they work. Most of the poetry I had read (or my mom had chosen for me) had been prettier. She was a big Longfellow, Shelley and Shakespeare fan. Lowell was my introduction to a more robust kind of poetry. He felt rebellious and fierce and I gobbled him up. And yes, he was also bleak and grim and depressive – perfect for adolescence.
GEN-Neutral is coming to the grid tomorrow. It is a brand new event and this first round promises excitement with its long list of participating designers that includes new faces and brands. More exciting, though, is the organizing principle of the event, highlighting and celebrating clothing that is gender neutral. For one, finally men can get some fashion love, but also, I am excited to see how these designers address the challenge. Do they punt and make tees and jeans? Or do they do something like Caboodle has, incorporating feminine elements into a masculine form or reversing that and incorporating masculine elements into a feminine form? That is what I am hoping to see from this event, the exploration of masculine and feminine in design, not ungendering the clothes, but ambi-gendering them. I think Caboodle succeeded magnificently.
The form is male, pants, shirt and suspenders. While the ruffles add a feminine element, they are not uniquely feminine and many a male tuxedo shirt boats ruffles. But the pants have unique details such as the absence of a fly, something more often seen in womenswear than menswear.
I am also wearing a fun bracelet from Izzie’s for the event. It is well-designed so it fits snugly on the wrist. The color of the leather straps can be changed, but the big win is the collection of fun and irreverent buttons that you can select in the texture-change HUD .
The hair is from KoKoLoRes and is a great undercut. Since I am wearing the Lelutka mesh head, I could not use the hairbases that came with it, but instead used the Lelutka Cassie hair base. I chose an ombre style that went from blonde to red, so I used a blonde airbase. I love the natural flow of the KoKoLoRes cut. It is also a great way to gender blend.
The skin is the brand new release from Glam Affair called Kaia and it has me absolutely giddy. I love the purity of it and it is well-named as Kaia means pure. The jewelry is from Maxi Gossamer, a set offered at Collabor88 back in April but in the store now.
Since this is for the GEN-Neutral event, I could not resist the irony of shooting in front of the strip club’s GIRLS, GIRLS, GIRLS sign. Is there anything more gendered than a strip dive?
Store info at Blogging Second Life
Poses: Del May
Hair: [KoKoLoReS] Hair – Val @ GEN-Neutral
Clothing: Caboodle – Elly Outfit – M @ GEN-Neutral
Shoes: fri. – Samantha.Booties (Iron) – Maitreya @ Collabor88
Jewelry: Izzie’s – Pride Bracelet @ GEN-Neutral
Maxi Gossamer Mama Sugar Earrings 1 and 3
HUDS: AnyPose Expression HUD v1.0 – Wear Me Yummy
Slink Ankle Lock
Skin: Glam Affair Kaia
Mesh Attachments: .LeLutka.Mesh Head-STELLA v1.1
Maitreya Mesh Body – Feet V3.4
Maitreya Mesh Body – Hand R V3.4
Maitreya Mesh Body – Lara V3.4
Appliers: .LeLutka.Cassie hairbase HUD.Set 01
Glam Affair ( Lelutka Heads ) Kaia Applier [ America ]
Eyes: pc eyes by LL – shallow water – medium
Location: Misfit Ghetto