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Madelaine McMasters

The Gnomist... and Wishes for 2016.

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When I was a baby, my Father made a little cardboard door at the base of the wall near my bedroom closet. As far as I knew, it had always been there. I was told it was a "Monster Door" and that monsters were shy little creatures that lived on the other side of the door, and who would brave the dark of night to tickle my toes.

Opening the door revealed nothing but a black wall. There was enough space between the door and the wall to place presents for the monsters. I left KitKat bars, Junior Mints, or little things I'd made from yarn and glitter. They left balls of lint, rusty things and tiny animal bones. While my childhood friends were growing afraid of the dark, I was growing to love it.

I never did see an actual monster, but I still believe in them. I might be one myself. I'll soon remodel that childhood bedroom and, when I do, I'll convert the monster door from cardboard to wood, with a larger space inside the wall to send and receive gifts. When I eventually sell my home, there will be a User's Guide for the new owners explaining just how that little door can be a gift for the entire family. And I will only sell to a family with little children, presuming we still have such things in 40 years.

Anyone who's visited my home in SL saw the little monster door there, and perhaps crawled through it, only to be incinerated in my fireplace. Yeah, I really am a monster.

I'd never heard a similar story, until now...

I bring this to your attention because I think SL attracts people who will appreciate it. I offer this and my own Monster Door as proof that SL is not the only world that's ours, if only we use our imaginations. As 2015 draws to a close, I wish for each and every one of you a 2016 that, in addition to exceeding your imagination, is largely the result of using it.

;-).

 

 

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Well, Maddy, when I said last night that you are one of the finest sorry tellers I've ever had the pleasure to meet, I wasn't just telling stories. Thank you for the beautiful stories, not just the ones you shared here, but for all the stories you've shared since I've met you. And thank you for being part of the fuel of my imagination. Happy 2016 to you and Mac as well.

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Madelaine McMasters wrote:


Lillie Woodells wrote:

you are one of the finest sorry tellers I've ever had the pleasure to meetl.

Sorry teller?

Well I never!

;-).

Lillie can't be right; Maddy *never* tells anyone she's sorry!

That was a great video. Thanks for sharing it, Maddy. I won't be surprised if Wisconsin is soon reporting gnome house sightings.

 

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Kidness is man's true nature and that is often overlooked. To depend on each other, to love each other, to show sympathy. Of course, things will happen like the death of a child and people with overlook that, but then one peson can come along and change everything. Love is the strongest form of magic.

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Lillie Woodells wrote:

Well, Maddy, when I said last night that you are one of the finest sorry tellers I've ever had the pleasure to meet, I wasn't just telling stories.


I think you're entirely correct, Lillie... no one is as good at telling sorries to people as is she.  In fact, I believe Maddy is so good she can usually convince most anyone that she's just apologizing, when, in essence, she's actually directing them to "f**k right the hell off".  She's my hero. :matte-motes-wink:

...Dres *loves him some Maddy*

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Lillie Woodells wrote:

Well, Maddy, when I said last night that you are one of the finest sorry tellers I've ever had the pleasure to meet, I wasn't just telling stories. Thank you for the beautiful stories...

,,,

Oh I agree, Maddy has convinced me to walk over to the Nefarious side solely on the strength of her story telling!

Yes have a wonderful 2016 everyone and may the Gnomes be with you [and may they nibble on your tosies too!]

 

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It's been nearly 30 years since I last created semi-public "art". And I don't think the spirit of my endeavor reached the lofty heights of the Gnomist. I stomped through an alfalfa field in the wee hours, creating some pretty basic crop circles. I was more interested in the mechanics of doing it and the thrill of being nefarious than in any appreciation (or consternation) that might result.

The "magic" of the Gnomist is very attractive to me. It's nice to live in a world where unseen forces sometimes go to work simply to delight us, or make us think. Crop circles are an example, here are others...

I'm not the only one who's interested in mysterious art and artists...

On simultaneously smaller and larger scales, there are these...

I do not believe in magic of the supernatural kind, but I'm a firm believer in the kind CanisMercy describes.

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CanisMercy wrote:

Kidness
is man's true nature and that is often overlooked. To depend on each other, to love each other, to show sympathy. Of course, things will happen like the death of a child and people with overlook that, but then one peson can come along and change everything. Love is the strongest form of magic.

Although you meant "kindness", and I could argue that man's true nature isn't as simple or rosy as just that, "kidness" is a lovely typo and might actually be closer to the truth. I've talked about "play" here before, and how it's both valuable and... overlooked. Play is our natural mechanism for learning how the world, and each other, works.

So, I do think that kidness, well done, leads to kindness.

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Dresden wrote (approximately):

I believe Maddy can usually convince most anyone that she's just apologizing, when, in essence, she's actually directing them to "f**k right the hell off".


You've alluded to this before in another post somewhere. It took Maddy a while to learn it from her Dad (if she's learned it), who learned it from his grandfather, who was a contemporary of Winston Churchill, who said...

“Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip.”


Dresden also wrote:

She's my hero. :matte-motes-wink:


You need to get out more, Dres.

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Tem Haalan wrote:

Crikey Maddy, I'm not sure how long ago you changed your avatar badge but this one is almost pornographic... I love it!

:D

 

 

It doesn't take much to turn you on, does it, Tem?  :smileyvery-happy::smileywink:

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hat is so cool!

My oldest granddaughter is 4 and half.  I think she would get a kick out of this and help me build the story for her 2 year old sister :)

And thank you very much for the wishes.  May your year be as beautiful as your heart.

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Rhonda, I have no siblings and no kids, so it's difficult for me to give the "Monster Door" experience to others the way my parents gave it to me. I think it would be wonderful for you to "plot" with your granddaughter to delight her little sister and to eventually carry that out into the wild.

There is another bit of whimsy I do bring to my surroundings. I carry red stick-on reflective discs in the glove compartment of my car. When I encounter deer crossing signs, I sometimes get out of the car and stick a disc to the tip of the deer's nose. I've been doing this for nearly 40 years, all across the US. I have no idea whether anyone's ever noticed the Rudolphs. It doesn't matter.

http://www.amazon.com/Gear-Gremlin-GG321-Adhesive-Reflector/dp/B00CCE63X0/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1451508231&sr=8-1&keywords=round+red+reflectors

I do like that those reflectors are made by "Gear Gremlin".

;-).

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Madelaine McMasters wrote:

Rhonda, I have no siblings and no kids, so it's difficult for me to give the "Monster Door" experience to others the way my parents gave it to me. I think it would be wonderful for you to "plot" with your granddaughter to delight her little sister and to eventually carry that out into the wild.

There is another bit of whimsy I do bring to my surroundings. I carry red stick-on reflective discs in the glove compartment of my car. When I encounter deer crossing signs, I sometimes get out of the car and stick a disc to the tip of the deer's nose. I've been doing this for nearly 40 years, all across the US. I have no idea whether anyone's ever noticed the Rudolphs. It doesn't matter.

I do like that those reflectors are made by "Gear Gremlin".

;-).

Well, Maddy, either you have passed through my town, or you have a creative kindrid soul out there somewhere.  ;)

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Lillie Woodells wrote:

Well, Maddy, either you have passed through my town, or you have a creative kindrid soul out there somewhere. 
;)


I'm sure it's the latter. We got the idea after seeing a Rudolph on a family vacation. Nefarianism is more widely practiced than admitted.

;-).

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Tem Haalan wrote:

Crikey Maddy, I'm not sure how long ago you changed your avatar badge but this one is almost pornographic... I love it!

:D


Tem, I peeked over the frontal lobe of our right hemisphere (Maddy's side) while she created that badge. I'm pretty sure her thoughts were completely pornographic at the time.

ETA: I should have mentioned that I really needn't have peeked to know that. She's fairly pornographic as a matter of course.

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SirLeighBastard wrote:

Your "story" explains a lot about your paranoia.

The story might not explain a lot about Maddy, but it does actually say a lot about who she is and how she got there. Your mention of paranoia is just the usual baiting attempt so I'll cut the line and dispose of that now. As it happens, you actually did form half of a valid point with the idea at the start of the sentence.

I've heard the monster door story many times, first directly and then from overhearing it being told to others or seeing it in places like this. It's one of my favorite Maddy stories (not my very favorite: that one inspired my signature line). Both, interestingly enough, have a lot to do with Maddy's parents, most especially her father. Both demonstrate not just Maddy's delight in play, but her father's wonderful sense of play. His ability to share that with her and in fact nurture it is no doubt what made her the delightful person we know.

She in turn has encouraged all who spend time with her to indulge our own playfulness. Second LIfe with its seemingly endless ways to be silly has been a perfect place to do just that, of course. That is obvious whenever someone starts one of those "Worst Noob Mistake" or "Dumbest Thing You've Ever Done in SL" threads. The obvious delight with which all the contributors share their gaffes makes it clear they got a bigger kick out of them than anyone.

A slight derail: my favorite of that genre is from someone who doesn't visit the forums much anymore, if at all (and that's too bad, she was a great contributor). Quite new, she was dancing with her 'boyfriend' in his skybox and for whatever reason got nude except for her cowboy hat and cowboy boots. Her exuberant dance carried her off the edge of the platform and she fell to earth, all the while laughing and without the slightest clue of how to stop falling. She landed, supine and of course still dancing, in the center of a wedding ceremony. A gay male wedding ceremony.

I had seen that Gnomist video before, Maddy. I loved the story but it never clicked that it had a resemblance to the monster door. I think the main reason was that the Gnome Forest was so benign. The children (and adults) who find the doors and interact aren't being exposed to anything that might be scary (although they are clearly being encouraged to let themselves use their imaginations). The gnomes apparently eat tea and crumpets. Your monsters left the bones of tiny animals. Your dad and mom treated you to a wonderful imaginary (well, potentially imaginary, nobody knows, right?) place and at the same time let it be just a touch macabre. This allowed you to feel unafraid in the face of what might be a scary thing, in this case monsters in the dark.

I'm glad the door is being renovated, too. A special place like that needs to be preserved.

 

Happy New Year to you, Maddy, and to everyone. Happy New Year to the monsters, too.

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Fear information and the development of fears during childhood: effects on implicit fear responses and behavioural avoidance. Field AP & Lawson J (2003)

Children who were told about fictitious monsters by adults developed irrational fears and phobias which impacted their subsequent mental health.

***Call me if you want someone to check under your bed before you retire.

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SirLeighBastard wrote:

Children who were told about fictitious monsters by adults developed irrational fears and phobias which impacted their subsequent mental health.

***Call me if you want someone to check under your bed before you retire.

That is a very interesting take on the story Maddy told.  One thing you might want to consider is context.

In what context where the children who developed irrational fears told about fictitious monsters?  Was it in an empowering manner such as the way Maddy's parents presented it to her?  Or was it in a fear inducing manner, such as a way of getting children to obey by empty threats of vicious creatures or people who do bad things to bad kids?

"Eat your peas or the boogeyman is going to get you!"

"If you don't clean your room, monsters come and eat the socks they find under your bed!"

From what I read, Maddy's dad gave the power into Maddy's hands and imagination.  He limited the area in which "monsters" could roam, keeping them in the confines of the door.  Maddy may not remember, but it could have easily been a way for her dad to alleviate the fear that most kids eventually develop of monsters, possibly from a sound or odd light shining through the window. 

I never told my child about monsters, but many kids shows and books have them.  His active imagination lead him to think some unknown thing was going to do him harm in the night.  His favorite toy was a stuffed duck, so we developed a routine of having "Ducky" check under the bed and in the closet for the "monsters".  Ducky ate anything that didn't belong and then they slept soundly. 

I did the same thing Maddy's dad did; he allowed her to use her imagination but pointed it in a different more positive direction. 

It’s all in the mind of the beholder really. The negative minded will take only negative away from the story.

 

 

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“Fairy tales do not tell children the dragons exist. Children already know that dragons exist. Fairy tales tell children the dragons can be killed.”
G. K. Chesteron

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