2:32 pm - Friday May 25, 2015

He’s Got The Whole World In His Hands – Interview with GarGraVarr Rau

Photo by Hethwen / Composition by Avacar

From the moment I landed to chat with ‘Gar’ today (as most of his friends call him), he was a very gracious host… making sure I had rezzed properly and was not offended by the relaxing music in the stream.  I assured him all was fine and I found a seat in this well-appointed seating area not far behind his popular night spot, The Source.

I first met Gar one sleepy Sunday afternoon when he was hosting a Gallery showing and I wandered in minutes before the ending time scheduled and asked if I could still look around.  This was more months ago than we can count on one hand.  He stayed late for me that day, having never met me before, and I remember he was as equally caring that day as now.  This is the Gar most people know and love today.

A veteran Second-Lifer by his respected age in game, Gar has had ample time to develop his many interests and see many of his imaginations come to life.  I hope we do a good job exploring those most important to him today.

A. What introduced you to Second Life?

G. I used to work late nights and after midnight, not much happening on television and I heard about SL via NPR radio, so I checked it out.

A. As soon as you began expressing yourself, which outlet did you go into that mattered most?

G. Well I dabbled in many things, when I first came into SL, a favorite of mine was The Lost Gardens of Apollo, and I was amazed at the creativity, so I saved my spare change until I was able to buy a sim and create my own paradise and shared it with many good friends.  It was then I discovered the musical talents that are within this world.  And in discovering the music within SL, I found a beautiful way for people to gather and share the experience.

A. It was sad to see that Lost Gardens had to go.

G. Sadly it is – too bad there was not a way to save it.

A. Now that Apollo is no more, what other sims are your favorites to visit, either past or present?

G. New York, NYC is a favorite of mine, but mainly because of a venue called The Roof, which is owned by Lingual Markus, and then there is Idle Rogue which is run by Cherryblonde (chryblnd.scribe).  Both are great places that make sure people have a good time and are very good places to socialize or bring that someone special.

A. Any story about the Gallery where we first met?

G. Yes, that is a project of a good friend, and consider him a brother, Grunt Popstar.  He called it Damari Gallery in honor of the Estate I had before the economy went belly-up and I had to make the hard choice of letting it go.  The estate was small, but Grunt enjoyed it as well as a few other people and each placed their soul upon its canvas.

“I enjoy going out and exploring when I have time.

My passion is with the arts and of several interpretations of life that each form portrays.”

A.  So, for a gallery business to succeed, what elements must exist to promote its relevance?

G. Give people something to think about, reach deep in their soul, touch it, and place your own soul upon it.  And place their soul upon yours.

A. Would you say the same thing applies to live music as well?

G. Absolutely, without question, any form of art is the expression of the soul and the sharing of your soul with others.

A. What motivates you in Second Life?

G. The people around me, they are my cheerleaders.  They are what drives me.  And I am always trying to give more back to them.

A. Can you think of any case where a project you were involved in saw unnecessary hardship and it took an act of congress practically to right that wrong?

G. I’m assembling my thoughts — when dealing with others, they each have their own visions, and many times it almost took an act of congress to get people to see what I see… but that is human nature.  Sometimes you have to compromise.  Sometimes I’m wrong, but I am the first to admit when I am wrong.

A. Mostly because attention spans in SL are as short as the 4 hour days here.

G. Well, here it is always my favorite time of day just before sunset, a time to reflect & share.  Besides The Source, this parcel is my favorite spot.  Many times I have brought artist’s managers here to talk about booking, and they say this is the most relaxing spot they have eve been treated to.

A. Where do you see yourself in SL two or three years from now, assuming all stays well and you continue at your present rate?

G. Possibly rebuilding my former estate and maybe if I win the lottery, have several different types of venues going.

A. Do you feel like Linden Labs is progressing enough technologically and introducing new features fast enough to meet what you think your future needs will be?

“I have been to a few meetings and many of us have asked why can’t this or that get fixed.  Many times we feel we are getting lip service [from Linden Labs]“

G. Case in point… as a venue I am only allowed to post 6 events in a 24 hour period, but yet when you have multiple booking you like to get them out of the way, and you go thru that limit very fast.

A. They do not have a way to do your data entry and schedule when that information goes out?

G. If they do, I have not heard about it.  A way to get around it is to have my hosts/hostesses to post as well.  Many people use the event listing to plan their week within Second Life.  And every venue, every musician and every gallery likes to give that option to people to plan their week in advance.  Several musicians want venues to post their booking in events at least a week in advance.  But when you host 8 to 12 events a week and then projects that seemed to get placed on the back burner because of Real Life, it makes it difficult.

A. Do most live musicians you find keep their appointed shows or do you have many last minute cancellations to deal with?

G. On the most part, all musicians hold to their commitments.  Granted, at times I have dealt with last minute cancellations, and in most cases it is because of Real Life issues.  I understand, for I always stress Real Life comes first – I mean it does pay the bills.

A. Is there any statement, however long or short, you prepared to share in case I asked that question but didn’t, that we should include now?

G. For one thing, I am just a simple man with simple pleasures.  I am one that follows my wizard, and embrace all those I encounter.  Each person has something to share, each person has value, and each person is a gift to everyone.  When I first came to Second Life, I saw the many cultures and I wish that every person in the real world would spend just 6 months in our virtual world and see that each of us has the same values, the same goals, the same passion, and maybe they will go out into the real world and try to make it more like the world of Second Life.

A. I have often thought that as well, Gar, but your expression makes lots more sense to me.  Thank you for a very quotable time today as I have truly enjoyed getting to know you more.

G. Thank you, my friend.

I think if Second Life had politicians and governmental structures like we deal with in our daily lives, Gar would make a most excellent candidate, BUT I don’t think he would want the job.  He embraces the ideal that less government is good government and let freedom ring.  So, here’s your honorary crown, Gar.  Take the world and make it yours :)

– Avacar Bluestar



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