The Adventures of Huygens Sideways Part Three: The Search for Music

By Aaron Russell


That place, Lump, turned out to be the proverbial tourist dump, full of high prices and cheaply-made goods. By the time I flew down there, the dart players had left anyway.

What to do now? That’s the problem with a nomadic lifestyle; I don’t have a task to complete or goal to achieve. I seem to remember, when I signed up, reading that Second Life boasts live deejays and concerts. Maybe I should try and check out one of those. Maybe Cold Play or Warm Work is performing.


Using the search button at the bottom, you can browse Second Life’s many places and events. I typed in “Live Music” and got a lot of hits. Most of them were gibberish to me. Maybe I’m too old for this shit.

No, Second Life hasn’t made any sense so far, so it can’t be me. I scrolled down a ways and found DJ Thom, Live at Happy Days. I like days that are happy, so why not? Once you select a location, there’s a teleport button to the right. I clicked it and got myself ready to dance like no avatars were watching.


Interesting. What I didn’t realize was that Live at Happy Days was referring to the TV show. It was all 50s music. Maybe I’m too young for this shit.

No, people are twerking to The Big Bopper. I should be OK. I might as well head down to the dancefloor.


I could use a drink, but there’s not a soda jerk to be found. DJ Thom is away from the tables at the moment. I head over there to see if I can que up Sir Mix-a-Lot, but I’m blocked from using them. They’re probably just props anyway. People are twerking to Earth Angel.


I hate to say it, but I’m kind of bored. Maybe I should do another search…wait a minute. Is that a mechanical bull over in the corner?


Hell yeah! This party just got next level. Sandro Halasy thinks so. I never thought I’d get to mechanical bull ride to La Bamba, but here we are. I seem to be a pro, because it’s been five minutes and it still hasn’t thrown me off yet.

But alas, boredom set in again and I detached myself from the bull. I think I’ve had all the 50s music I can take. I decide to wonder the perimeter a little.


A guy named Xon Emoto just pulled up in his VW Bug. He got out and headed to the party. I noticed the car was still running so I hopped in. Yet again, a vehicle informs me I’m not the owner and can’t drive it. I said it would be happier with me and we should blow this party and that Xon really doesn’t care about it. The car was silent, probably mulling this over when Xon noticed me in his car.

He walked back up and told me to get out of his car. I said, “Sorry, I just assumed it was mine since the license plate says ‘2 Hot’. You know, you should really pay more attention to your car. She’s kind of depressed.” There was a thirty second pause before he replied.


“What?” he asked.

“I’ve been talking with her for five minutes and she hasn’t said a word,” I said.

“Get out of my car!” he demanded.

“I will, but only because 2 HOT doesn’t want any trouble,” I replied.


I got out. Xon calmed down but seemed a little perplexed. I started walking away but before I left his earshot, I saw him type, “Weirdo.”

I think I had caused enough emotional damage at Happy Days. So, I fired up my search tab and looked for more music. This time I just closed my eyes and picked one at random. Turns out it was a break-beat DJ at some posh mansion on the coast. I walked in, and the music was more my style. I picked a deserted corner and saw some dance balls and activated one.


This is way more comical looking than I thought it would be. I’m not sure why my groin is glowing, but I’m going with it. I proceeded to cut up my section of the floor for a while, but no honeys paid attention. Maybe the torch was scaring them off. Sorry, ladies, we’re a package deal. And this package glows.


I decided to take a break and sit down and enjoy the view. I’m sure you might be wondering about the “dance balls” I was talking about and all this teleporting business. I’ll tell you what I have learned so far about mobility and actions here.

I have learned that Second Life isn’t one big open-ended world. It’s divided up into countless zones you can get to by teleporting. You can get to the end of a zone and not go any further. Some zones are huge. Some are tiny.

Actions are limited unless there are action balls about. You can sit most places, get in vehicles and such, but if you want to do a specific thing, like dance, there have to be little floating balls, designed to do that action, that you activate by clicking on them. And if you want to copyright “Action Balls” or “Dance Balls”, don’t bother. I already tried.

As you can see from the chairs around me, there are “lay” balls on them. Don’t bother with “Lay Balls” either, I’m one step ahead of you and always a dollar short myself. I activated the ball and lay back in the chair. It was a little disconcerting that I was lying on an ignited torch, though.

I watched the folks dance for a while, but the hour (that I slacked off at work) was growing late, and I thought I should find a nice quiet spot to settle down for the night. I needed some nature. I typed “garden” into my search and the first hit was Second Life Botanical Garden.


Oooo, this is nice. It’s just what I was looking for. I see a fine looking rug in the corner with a sit-and-watch-the-waves ball on it.


This is lovely. It’ll give me time to think of what to do next. You know, the presidential election is coming up. Rumor has it a lot of the candidates have their own zones in an attempt to connect with today’s youth. I should go check a few out and protest.


Tune in next time for…

Part Four: Political Voids & Prostitutes 


Aaron is living the life on Twitter. He also has a website devoted to his Photoshop hilarity.

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