Showing posts with label stickam. Show all posts
Showing posts with label stickam. Show all posts

2.8.09

New Orleans looks oddly vanilla on White Linen Night.

I had come to expect loosely populated streets this summer, especially downtown, where normally Canal street is mediocre, even with the Insectarium, Aquarium and Casino traffic. The side streets of downtown, namely Julia, were hopping tonight. Art vendors swung open their doors and people strolled through, wearing their finest white attire (and some with no attire), wishing they could afford original art. I had never been to white linen night. So when Tony called, while I was at home camming on Stickam talking about video games and cell phone covers with a guy from Missouri, I decided to go. He was funny because he was streaming his live camera from a cell phone cover store. His shop is in an Army PX. He would talk to me and the others in the room and then, without a hitch, Say, “hello. How can I help you?” Then you would hear the chatter of customer talk. No one knew his laptop, stowed low on the cashier counter, held such voyeurism, including his queer boss. Only once did someone discover it: “So what you got there?” quipped a girl who had violated the sacred space between customer and proprietor. My friend told the girl, “I am on camera with my friends.” She was happy with that answer. But, this story is a story within a story. With Tony's call, I had to pull myself out of cyber world (which has composed my summer existence). I want to write a book about Stickam but that is another story.

Let us talk about White Linen:


One gallery had a red carpet leading through its front doors with fake paparazzi taking our pictures. Instantly, of course, I thought of Lady Gaga. Even though New Orleans for me has never been associated in my mind with the glitz of Hollywood; it was nice to pretend. I wonder if Lady Gaga was at White Linen Night? She certainly could have fallen from a downtown condo similar to one in her video. The PAPA - PAPA razzi of the night mainly concerned local art. The Ogden was open as well as the Contemporary Art Center. We had not had this kind of art focus on Julia since Prospect One closed down shop in January. And of course, there is Art for Art’s Sake on Magazine. Difference: White Linen had no FREE booze. Not even water!

I heard there used to be free booze and cheese, but now, you gotta pay. Sucks. Even though the city is candidly an art gallery in of itself, the nights we dedicate specifically to art are special. A sketch of an alligator with two heads, to show a difference in motion: one head its jaw open, the other, its jaw closed, blood dripping from its mouth, called “In Remembrance of Jacko.” I wonder if the title was added as a dedication after Jacko’s death or before?
Now you could say the mass of white bedecked linens strolling Julia were Middle Class. Maybe upper middle-class white folk — like me! — who do not have original art pieces hanging in their homes — but it did strike me as funny the white in white linen also reflected race: I saw maybe three non-caucasions the entire night.



I made two faux pas at White Linen night:

1. I called a lady a bitch because she would not let me drink a glass of red wine in her store. Whatever happened to the congenial tradition of booze and art? She heard me but did not respond. I was a tad bit buzzed. One reason I am going straight to the burning flames when I cease to exist.
2. I took a photograph of some chick dressed in a peacock. See pictures. She was very angry at me. So, I post her here.




Anyway, thank you, White Linen, for giving me a reason to post on Blogger.


Look at all the wine we drank at W.I.N.O. Miss Mae was heartily happy to drink some red. Tony luxuriated in the semi-port we drank. The machines are way cool. To drink some red or white, you simply pre-pay or put a card at the cashier. They give you a plastic W.I.N.O card. Simply place the card in a slot, position your glass at an angle, press one, two, or three ounces and frothy goodness flows forth. Miss Mae and I spent forty dollars between the two of us in probably forty-five minutes.
We drank from these bottles: I guess I could make this a wine blog and go into each one’s specific gustation, but I won’t here. 1.) I am tired and 2.) It is not my intent.

Now, I guess one could argue just buying a bottle of nice wine and sharing it is more economical than guzzling choice ounces but one pays for the experience.

And, as Miss Mae told me as we walked away from Julia street: “You are the consummate English major, always living to write about a new experience."
Ain't that the truth. I am seriously thinking of writing about Stickam. I have that text novel going but I have no idea where to go with it. Maybe John will have some ideas. :-)

21.3.09

Online Video Chat Review: Adventures in Stickam

Adventures in Stickam (pronounced STICK CAM)
    People with addictions know (if only at the level of the subconscious) that the addict is searching for the next big hit. The addict thinks, "yeah, the next shot will be better than the last." Well, addictive websites act according to the same logic. On Stickam, the same addictive cycle plays itself out. I must confess (*wipes back tears*) I am an addict. I go to CA meetings monthly (camwhores anonymous). Hah hah. lolz. ROFL. (oh wait, this is a blog, not an I<) With that said, I do not intend for this blog to be a moral diatribe. 
    If you are offended by this kind of thing, don't read my blog. Lots of ink has been spilled about the risks of Stickam. I will reserve moral judgment for other plebes. If you don't know about Stickam, it is a site where you can chat and cam with dozens of people simultaneously. The site allows you to register for free with a username, a profile page (where you can add personal information, stats, quotes) similar to Facebook and myspace. In the chat rooms, Stickam is a free-for-all.
    The phenomenon called Stickam was started in 2004 and is owned (according to the site) by Advanced Video Communications. The site states that Stickam is "the pioneer of live streaming video and the largest live community on the Internet." Yippie! Oh, Stickam, I love you!

Stickam Chat Rooms    See, Stickam chat rooms are created by Stickam users, so chat groups can be anything from {str8.gay.bi} to {Vampire Nation™}. I am serious! Inside a chat room are usually dozens of users, having various conversations at once. The funny thing about Stickam is that people are usually chatting. I have never been online and seen empty chat rooms.
Another feature of Stickam is the option "to go live." This simply means that anyone anywhere can view your webcam, not only the three million registered viewers but anyone with a computer and a web browser. Or you can limit your live to friends and people you select. The live feature gives Stickam an advantage over other cam sites because a user can embed their "live" into their websites and create, on the fly, instant personal webcam pages. In reality, live is so dumb: who cares if you are brushing your teeth, no one wants to see it.
     Stickam is pure hilarity. It is mindless. Sometimes, utterly profound. A typical tour through Stickam will desensitize even the most unsensitized of persons. To me, Stickam is like a fast-food drive-thru. Cheap, temporarily fulfilling and quick. Like most chat rooms, people are rude, crass, stupid, demoralizing, impish, inane, and usually vapid. All rules of grammar and spelling are void. Shallowness is the new deep, folks.
     But, I am not knocking the experience. Stickam is fucking funny. Especially when someone is like super high, talking as if no one is listening (which is the charm of the live entertainer, btw) and having conversations with other cammers, reading their comments, and rocking out. It is hilarious. But, hey, maybe I am just shallow, man.
     The quintessential feature that makes Stickam unique is its egalitarian front. You got all kinds, dawlin'. Also, it is the one place on the web where you can see with your eyes, hear with your ears, read with your brain, all at the same time people just doing otherwise banal, stuff. It is so funny: some people actually are on Stickam 24/7. You can tell: they are sleeping, eating, talking on their cell phones, or doing homework.
Some users I have met:
    Mature guys like Cheech 
 I met him and his parrot  will demonstrate to anyone who will listen how to be masculine type, be a Puerto Rican top, wear leather properly, and at the same show professionalism and decorum (he is a social worker by trade). Immature folks (like lil gangsta) say whatever is on their mind ("I just farted" or "I am bored"). Calicob is from Atlanta and enjoys discussing quantum physics. Ender is an intriguing lad who loves to speak about Frederic Jameson, but he is usually shirtless, drinking, and a potty mouth. Mr.Brian lives in Oregon, mid-life, and says nothing except, "how is everyone tonight?" Canadabeef is scary. Patrick is Canadian and loves to hate on Americans; he splatters the chat with French phrases and he is super mean.
    Although I have to admit with lil gangsta, most Stickam sessions are kinda boring. To be a true hard-on, junkie, basically quit your job, stock up on food and booze, never leave your house and set yourself in front of the webcam and wait.
    One user, Cocoboy, is a boy, but he likes to dress up like a girl and he is from Scotland. He is fucking hilarious. If he is on, I mute everyone else and listen to his rambling monologue (it goes on for hours). Or lindababe: she is a girl, I think, and she has her iTunes on randomizer and she loves to jam out and make obscene comments.
Some Stickam vocabulary:
     If you never say anything and don't go on cam you are called a "lurker". For example, "hey lurkerz, come in!" If you go on cam and say things but you are kinda scary you are called a "creeper". For example, "That dude is such a creeper." Mods are moderators. Dock and undock: on Stickam the user chooses (docks) people they want to see or removes (undocks) people they don't want to see. Pedos = anyone who is creepy. Pedobears = hairy ones. The penis is called a peen (cuz you can't curse). If you want to send a private message you PM that person.
    If you show pubes, you're out. Although, this rule is occasionally broken. Frontal nudity on Stickam is actually hilarious. It happens sporadically. Lasts for about fifteen seconds, before a mod notices and kicks them out. The most disturbing incident I have ever seen on Stickam was a drunk adolescent was with his friends, said he was gay, flashed his peen, then wrote "death to all faggots" and then wrote his phone number and location for all to see. Or another time: a girl was live and she was obviously severely overdosed, crying bitterly, and talking about killing herself. Her friend was also live, on the phone with 911, waiting for the cops to arrive. And we could call see the events transpiring.
Now Voyeurs!
Voyeurism is the attra
ction of Stickam. No one ever says it but it is the reason why the cammers gather. Let's face it: we are a nation of secret voyeurs (well, not so secret). Stickam is Rear Window for the rest of us. If a user is not on cam he is instantly suspect. Doubly suspect if he or she is not on cam nor does she have a profile pic. Either you want to be seen or you want to see. Even though exhibitionism is banned, everyone loves the thrill of the occasional girl or guy who shows all. Because it is prohibited means it is more exciting when it happens. If Stickam were unadulterated it would not be as fun. That's what porn is for! If you want skin on Stickam you got to ask for it or just wait patiently. On Stickam, most folks follow the rules. But, rules are made to be broken. When they are broken it gives everyone a thrill. Even the prudes. I would not be surprised if Stickam's developers are forced to can the site. I have noticed the web watchers are getting nervous. It is only a matter of time before something hits the news: "teen commits suicide because someone on Stickam told them"
    Which brings me to my second to last point: sex. I guess sex underscores the entire Stickam phenomenon. Sexuality is such a colorful cornucopia. I have never met so many bi people in my life. Everyone is bi. OMG. If you want sex it is not prudent to just start doing it on cam. Even the camwhores get all puritan on you. Sex on Stickam is like sex in real life: flirt, reveal some potent information, proposition yourself, exchange instant message names (or use Stickam's C2C feature).
    Stickam lies in that interstitial space: not so highly prohibited like pornography, but at the same time, most people would not want their colleagues (or their kids) to know that they cam every night in the {rock_with_your_cock_out} room.
Caveats:

  • It eats up your time
  • Mostly uninteresting
  • Don't forget to turn your cam off
  • Gender ambiguity is a given
  • People lie
  • Haters abound
But, hey, compared to other empty garbage like Reality TV and QVC, I'll take Stickcam anyday.
Read more about Stickam: