When I was an apprentice geisha, a maiko at the Yoshiwara Okiya, I was participating in role play altho at the time I didn’t realize this. (huh? yeah, I can be very naive.) After I left the okiya and moved on, I realized that my experiences were very much role play experiences. And even after I left the okiya I practiced many of the skills I’d learned in my training. For example, often I’d dress in my kimonos and greet visitors in my garden with the proper bow and greeting.
This is basically how I met Takamatsu (I’m calling him Tak now). And it left an impression on him, and usually when I saw him visiting the garden I would maintain my character (I’m learning the jargon of RP), and this is how he came to see me. All of this seemed very natural to me because the Yoshiwara Okiya gave me good training. There is much more to Tak’s point of view but he began seeing me as a natural role player even tho I didn’t. hehe
Fast forward to today. When does dressing up in costumes become roleplay? Are DJs at night clubs actually role playing? Does someone have to loose for role play to be role play? Ok, I told Tak, “Yordie Sands combines parts of me as a teenager [you know, playful, curious] and me as a mature woman [like, generally I have enough sense to not do really stupid things… hehe].” Is my human role playing Yordie Sands? Is Zoe Connolly’s Time Traveller series role play or storytelling? Is it role-play or role play or roleplay or Role-Play? /me roles her eyes. All kinds of questions like this have begun to cross my mind.
So, last night I started looking for some definitive information. Here’s what Wikipedia says, “Role-playing refers to the changing of one’s behaviour to assume a role, either unconsciously to fill a social role, or consciously to act out an adopted role.” And they go on to quote Qxford English Dictionary as “”the changing of one’s behavior to fulfill a social role.” Hmmm… ok, I get that. cool. Then I found a link on Headburro Antfarm’s blog to Second Life Roleplay, and found this really even cooler post called “The Role Player’s Creed.” And if you are wondering how vast the role play experience is in SL, take a look at this list of roleplay sims.
Oh yeah, I’m starting to get this whole role play thing now. I’ve even started a new section in the right border of this blog called “Role Play Blogs”. Yes, I now think SL DJs (who are not DJs in real life) are role playing. I believe the same is true of SL shop owners, SL strippers, SL geisha, SL models and many if not most of the roles we adapt in SL. Hey, it includes all the guys who are switching genders too. And if you aren’t a member of a motorcycle gang in real life, and you portray yourself as one in SL, you are roleplaying. hehe
I find this role play thing to be cool, but I know people who won’t. I think you’ll be hearing a lot more about role play in this blog in the future.