AAW: And More!

It’s Asexual Awareness Week! To celebrate, this week I featured four asexual Sims from stories on this blog. Then I started thinking about all of the other asexual Sims that have been in my games and my stories, so I thought today,as my last AAW post, I’d share brief profiles of some of them.

If you’d like to learn more about asexuality, please visit the Asexuality Visibility and Education Network, AVEN.

Our Sim games are often mirrors. Through conversations with other Simmers, I’ve noticed that our games tend to generate Sims with traits that resonate with us. I get a lot of Sims with “Loves Outdoors” trait, and quite a few cheerful artists or musicians, too. Other Simmers may get Sims with traits that pick up on themes or personalities relevant to them.

Because my game-play style lets Sims make their own important decisions in life, especially those involving romantic relationships, I started noticing early on, months before I came across the term “asexual” to denote an orientation, that many of my Sims were not sexually attracted to other Sims.

When playing the legacy, I felt a little nervous with asexual Sims who didn’t roll whims to “try for baby” because legacies are somewhat dependent upon procreation! I decided that if the legacy heirs didn’t roll the whim to “try for baby” they could adopt. Luckily for the continuation of Cedar Bough’s genes, each heir, eventually if not sooner, did want to have a baby.

One of the first asexual Sims in the Bough family was Willow, the gen 4 spare.

Willow

I loved Willow possibly more than any other Sim. I identified with her. She has a quality of self-containment and wholeness that I admire and aspire to. She had plenty of Sims interested in her, including one musician that I really liked, but she chose to remain single throughout her life. She was one of the happiest, most serene Sims I’ve known.

Willow’s niece Poplar was a different story. While Willow never struggled against who she was, Poplar’s life was forged from struggle. She may have been asexual, but she had a high libido and a mile-wide mean streak. She had really great fashion, too.

Poplar

Two generations later, onezero’s half-brother, Doug Fir, was also an asexual.

Doug Fir

Doug Fir lived his life at Cradle Rock. When he rolled the snob trait to complement his materialistic trait, I planned to move him across the street to Manzanita’s Mansion. But Doug’s third trait was lazy, and he let me know that he was happy to be the bachelor uncle. Like Willow, Doug Fir was happy and whole throughout his life. He was an amazing artist, in addition to being a true Renaissance Sim.

Doug Fir and onezero’s nephew, Alder, carried on the tradition of bachelor uncle. Including Alder, we’d now had asexuals in the family in generations 4, 5, 7, and 8. By this time, I’d come across the term and had begun to think about it and what it means as an individual’s orientation. Alder always chose variety and experience. Unlike his twin sister, he chose not to drink youth potions: he chose to grow old and he kept his appointment with Grim. He carried on the family tradition of artist, expressing his passion and deep understanding of life through the brush.

Alder

In addition to the Sims in Goofy Love, Dr. Jasmine from Dr. Jasmine’s CasebookDr. Jasmine’s Casebook, Emma Bennet from Harrington’s Wonder Child and Houseful of Hippies (as well as possibly many others of the hippies), Henrietta Davida Thoreau from Walden Once More and Emerson Institute, and Silduun Siltuunde from Where I’m From are all asexuals. (I’m starting to notice a pattern!) It’s possible that even Jack Bivuoac from Drifter is; though I write him as a Sim who’s attracted to women, he has yet to demonstrate this interest in the game.

I guess in exploring what life and living means to me through playing this game and writing about it, it isn’t surprising that so many asexuals would appear here in these posts. And, given my own romantic nature, perhaps it’s also not surprising that my SimSelf would find herself experiencing epic loves in many of the games I play and stories I write.

I’ve noticed in writing the stories on this blog and playing the games behind them that they’ve all led me to discoveries. I heard someone once refer to The Sims as being like tarot cards, and when I play the game, I sometimes feel that it responds magnetically to my thoughts, interests, and questions. This is how my life themes come to present themselves to me through the game. A less esoteric explanation would be that as I make countless choices through playing the game, the game responds, and in this way, without consciously realizing it, I shape the games, stories, and Sims that are generated. We’re meaning makers, too, all of us people, and especially storytellers, so as I look through the events that happen and the Sims that populate the games, my mind fashions what I see into a story, a story that means something to me.

It’s curious to me that my understanding of myself as an asexual has largely come about through my involvement with the SimLit community and through Simming. In fact, when I think of all the significant growth and discoveries I’ve experienced since September 2014, when The Sims 4 came out, it is all interconnected with, and often generated from, my involvement with The Sims and SimLit. I guess it’s fitting, then, that my public “coming out” has been through sharing my ace Sims with you. Thanks for reading and, in that way, being a part of this!

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Whisper 1.3

whisbi301

Life feels very random to me. Things happen, and I can’t link them together. I can’t find cause, only reel from the effects.

You might just watch, without analysis, and then, through time, patterns may emerge which point towards meaning. When that happens, you see that nothing is truly random.

This valley, even in all its beauty, hides in a mist of eeriness. Nothing is straightforward. Nothing is simple. I wonder what I’m doing here.

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Something terrifying happens: more of the randomness, and completely senseless.

I hear noise in front of the house. Jin Anjali, our new roommate, runs out with me to see a figure in a black hood rise from the earth.

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“Oh, not the Countess!” shrieks Jin. “Countess Snypes! Get up!”

A figure glowing with red embers curls in a fetal position.

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She rises. I hope for a moment that she’ll be OK, that I can save her.

Her eyes are two spots of light. I avert my gaze from the red glow where her heart should be.

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She shakes the hand of the hooded one.

“No,” whimpers Chauncey. I look away, afraid to be a witness.

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And now we have a grave in the front lawn.

“How can a vampire have a grave?” I ask Jin, who seems to know everything. “Aren’t vampires already undead?”

Jin shakes her head. “It’s not like undead means immortal.”

But that’s exactly what I thought it did mean.

Jin is our new roommate. I have no idea how that happened. Chauncey decided that he was too good to be a roommate and needed to have his name on the lease. He knows the landlord. But then, since he was no longer a roomie, he decided we needed a new one to take his place, and now we have Jin.

They fight all the time.

Right now, Jin is yelling at Chauncey because he’s a bookworm. He overlooks her insults. She’s a witch, and he told me that she is the coolest person in the valley.

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That still doesn’t give her the right to be rude.

We attend a costume party at Rainflower’s house.

I go all out and wear a dress, a choker, and face paint. It’s Spooky Day, and I want to look magical.

“That green stuff on your face looks like a bunch of ants marched through pea soup and then walked all over you while you were sleeping in a crypt,” Jin says.

“I think she looks nice,” says Chauncey.

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Snow falls. More randomness continues. My garden lies dormant. I can’t imagine spending the winter cooped up inside with Jin and Chauncey.

I’m heading to university, even if my skills aren’t that high and I’ve got hardly any money.

Take the aptitude test. See if you earn a scholarship.

I take the aptitude test, giving it my best shot.

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To my surprise, I earn a partial scholarship and enter with distinctions in the fine arts major.

I’m going to college.

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I’ve wanted this for so long.

I tell Chauncey to look after the place, pack up my few belongings, and head out to catch the van to the airport.

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Through the rear window, I look back at my little house, at the edge of town. Jin and Chauncey are out in front, waving goodbye.

I watch my home and all the confusion around it grow smaller and smaller. Life still feels really random.

Hang in there, dearheart. You have all of life ahead of you, plenty of time for the world and those in it to begin to make sense.

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Wonder 25

Mae

2501

Lately, I’ve been watching Charlie as if I’m seeing him for the first time. I wonder if my dad felt like this sometimes. I remember once, I was about Charlie’s age, and I was writing in my journal. I remember that I felt excited–I’d just discovered something. I forget what it was, but I was writing quickly, and when I looked up, I caught my dad looking at me.

“What are you doing?” I asked my dad.

“I’m seeing you,” he said. I blushed.

“I’m nothing to look at,” I answered.

“No,” said my dad. “You’re beautiful.”

I remember how bashful I felt. But as I’m looking at Charlie now, seeing how beautiful, how amazing he is, I imagine that my face looks like my dad’s did then: lost in the wonder of this person that somehow came here through me.

Charlie and Berry as so similar. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised. I mean, Berry and I raised him. And Berry and I, we talk a lot. I mean, we’re always talking, always sharing our ideas and our opinions. I guess we’re opinionated. So it makes sense that Charlie would pick up our views and mindset. But it’s not just ideas that he shares with his aunt: he even has her gestures and mannerisms.

2502

I always thought that Charlie would grow up macho and tough. I’m not sure how I got that idea. He was a bold kid, and his dad, while not coarse, by any means, is certainly very masculine. So I always imagined that Charlie would grow up to be just like him. But Charlie has such a sensitive side. He’s creative and intellectual, and he speaks articulately and eloquently, and he seems to be always thinking, always feeling.

2503

He’s started a club. It’s called “Paint,” but it’s really a club for sensitive, creative types like him. It was his idea that they practice yoga.

“I’ve been reading about meditation,” he said. “Musicians are using it to help with performance anxiety. I think I need to add it to my toolkit.”

2505

“It’s good for artists, too,” said Yuki. “Integration of mind and body!”

I watched Yuki talking with him. Charlie doesn’t seem to notice yet, but he draws women to him. I’m grateful he’s sensitive: at least if he breaks hearts, it won’t be intentional.

2504

During the first club meeting, Berry and Hugo got mired in a debate about pointillism. I had to shake my head. Leave it to my sister to refute the optics theory behind it.

“It’s all dots anyway,” she said, “whether we paint them as such or not. We just can’t perceive them in any other way!”

Hugo seemed deflated.

2506

Charlie joined them.

“It’s having a renaissance, did you say?” he asked Hugo.

“Yeah, sure,” said Hugo. “And I’m the biggest champion.”

“But why not Impressionism?” said Beryl.

“It’s not either-or, is it?” Charlie said. “Don’t we learn more when it’s both-and? And even if now, we can see what about pointillism doesn’t work, doesn’t that make it even more interesting, for we learn about how our minds put together what we see, like when we listen to music, if we know something about auditory theory, we can understand how our minds put together what we hear into a cohesive piece? Isn’t that what matters?”

Beryl and Hugo both looked at him, feeling their argument had been diffused.

Charlie smiled and continued talking with more and more enthusiasm about how we create meaning out of what we see and hear.

I thought of my dad, again, as I always seem to do whenever I reflect on having once been a daughter, and now being a mother. I remembered how my dad picked up my journal one day and held it before me. “It’s just little lines on paper,” he said, “until the human mind decodes these scratches and forms them into meaning.”

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