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#264407 - 11/29/08 08:46 PM Avatars
michael banks Offline


Registered: 06/12/08
Posts: 1755
Loc: Mojave Desert, Ca
The other day I noticed that another member had changed his avatar and does it from time to time.
So I was looking at mine and started wondering what messages that we sent out to each other.
By the choice of our own avatars and the name we choice to be called by here at M/S.
It is amazing to me how inventive the human race is in it's ability to find ways of comunicating with each other in nonverbal ways.

I was looking at my name and avatar. Reflecting on why I chose them to represent me as my face for M/S and all the members here.

The name is easy because it is my real name.
I use it because I have nothing to hide or to be a shamed of.
I was taught in AA that I had to come to terms with both the good and bad about myself and what had happened to me. To learn to accepted and love myself as I truely am. Not as I pretended to be for myself and others. To take responsibility the choices and actions that I had made in my life that I had regreted or felt ashamed of. Because without self-acceptance there cannot be any real or meaningful healing in my life.

My avatar represents the journey of my life both as a child being abused and as an adult in recovery.

The desert represents the abuse and neglect and loniliness of life that I endured as a child. It also represents the struggle, pain and harshness of my recovery. To recovery we have to travel thought our own personal Death Valley.

The boy,for that is what I see riding the camel is that lost hurting, lonely boy who I had been for so long.

The camel repersents God and the people who have helped carry me on my journey of recovery. Those who have helped carry my burden of pain and shame.

The sun repersents- Yesterday as a child the setting sun and the bleak and dark world that I lived in as a child.
The rising sun today, The light and hope of recovery as I deal with the effects of my abuse. Coming into the light of healing and hope of a better future.

As he looks out into the distance he sees the oasis of his salvation in front of him.

Mike



_________________________
To own one's shadow is the highest moral act of a human.
-Robert Johnson-

"IT ought never be forgotten that the past is the parent of the future" John C. Calhoun

WOR Alumni Sequoia 2009

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#264411 - 11/29/08 09:11 PM Re: Avatars [Re: michael banks]
1islandboy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/23/08
Posts: 856
Loc: washington
I don't know to much about about avatars. I'm kinda limited on my computer skills.

What I do know is that I relate to the eagle spirit and everything it represents. One of these days I'll be looking to go...


Where Eagles Dare.

island

_________________________
Rise above the storm and you will find the sunshine ~ M.F. Fernandez

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#264415 - 11/29/08 09:22 PM Re: Avatars [Re: 1islandboy]
michael banks Offline


Registered: 06/12/08
Posts: 1755
Loc: Mojave Desert, Ca
Island,

I understand, had to have my granddaughter help to show me (or should I say have her put it in place)for me.
Seven months ago I didn't even own a computer.


Mike

_________________________
To own one's shadow is the highest moral act of a human.
-Robert Johnson-

"IT ought never be forgotten that the past is the parent of the future" John C. Calhoun

WOR Alumni Sequoia 2009

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#264416 - 11/29/08 09:23 PM Re: Avatars [Re: 1islandboy]
EGL Offline
Moderator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 06/19/04
Posts: 7819
Thanks, Michael, for sharing that about your avatar - very cool, indeed.

I like French Impressionism, hence my current avatar. Monet knew no equal, IMO.

_________________________
Eddie

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#264421 - 11/29/08 09:32 PM Re: Avatars [Re: EGL]
michael banks Offline


Registered: 06/12/08
Posts: 1755
Loc: Mojave Desert, Ca
Eddie,

Very beautiful indeed.
I don't know much about prainters or paintings.
Now I know a little more than I did.

Thank You.

Mike

_________________________
To own one's shadow is the highest moral act of a human.
-Robert Johnson-

"IT ought never be forgotten that the past is the parent of the future" John C. Calhoun

WOR Alumni Sequoia 2009

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#264423 - 11/29/08 09:42 PM Re: Avatars [Re: michael banks]
ttoon Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/19/07
Posts: 977
Mike,


I like your avatar, among other things, it always makes me think of heading east on 58 up over the mountain and into the desert.

:-)


Dave

_________________________
checkin out for a few weeks... whistle
02/07/09

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#264424 - 11/29/08 09:49 PM Re: Avatars [Re: ttoon]
michael banks Offline


Registered: 06/12/08
Posts: 1755
Loc: Mojave Desert, Ca
Dave,

I live about 35 miles south of the 58 off of the 395.
I take the 58 often going to Bakersfield or Fresno for my work.

Mike

_________________________
To own one's shadow is the highest moral act of a human.
-Robert Johnson-

"IT ought never be forgotten that the past is the parent of the future" John C. Calhoun

WOR Alumni Sequoia 2009

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#264428 - 11/29/08 10:07 PM Re: Avatars [Re: michael banks]
WalkingSouth Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/30/05
Posts: 16263
Mike,

What a cool idea for a thread. I also like the symbolism you attach to your choice of avatar.

When I first came to the site one of the things that really spoke to me was the Logo character of the boy, first looking down, and as realization and healing happens he begins to look up. That was me growing up. Always looking at the ground. Shame brought that into my life and the recovery journey has taught me that I can indeed look up, and do it with pride.

John

_________________________
“Life’s journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting ‘Holy ____…! What a ride!’” ~Hunter S. Thompson

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#264437 - 11/29/08 10:51 PM Re: Avatars [Re: WalkingSouth]
Roofus Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/24/08
Posts: 233
Loc: Utah
When I first came here I presented an avatar that represented what my heart was feeling at the time. It was not the best avatar to have chosen.

The one I have now is representative of my life in many different aspects... I would like to share it with people some time if you're interested.

Allen


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#264443 - 11/29/08 11:28 PM Re: Avatars [Re: Roofus]
king tut Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/13/08
Posts: 2465
Loc: UK
my name king tut refers to tutankhamun, the pharaoh, the boy king, because when i was younger i loved ancient Egypt, and i always wanted to be that boy king, i loved that idea, i still do, and i don't know i love Egypt and all the magic i think it has, and the mysteries, and the wider world, and adventure! and travel, and nice things, and i wanted to be an archaeologist and dicover things, and being able to make decisions, a boy with choices, a boy with power, i wanted that, and being loved and respected, that's what it is. I'm going to go to Egypt it's one of my ambitions. i love ancient egyptian civilisation, its character is dependent on your imagination more than anything else, it says alot about the world, and lots of people say lots about it.

my lack of picture at the moment is because i am in limbo. crossroads? it's more like a spaghetti junction

_________________________
"...until lambs become lions"

I love you, little lewis, and i will never leave you. We are the same. You brighten my day, and i will make sure that i brighten yours. Hugs and kisses.


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#264444 - 11/29/08 11:29 PM Re: Avatars [Re: king tut]
king tut Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/13/08
Posts: 2465
Loc: UK
i also liked playing on sand dunes alot, and there is plenty of sand in Egypt smile

_________________________
"...until lambs become lions"

I love you, little lewis, and i will never leave you. We are the same. You brighten my day, and i will make sure that i brighten yours. Hugs and kisses.


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#264446 - 11/29/08 11:40 PM Re: Avatars [Re: king tut]
pufferfish Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/26/08
Posts: 6712
Loc: USA
Hello All,

I tried various avatars for a bunch of months. Most of them were pictures of me as a boy. Then I went to Winnie the Pooh's Eeyore because I tend to be a bit moody sometimes. Then I used the picture of Will in Son of Rambo because it expressed an adventuresomeness that I would have liked in my life. Then I tried the baby Einstein theme. At that time the Policy on Avatars came out and I felt I had to change it.

Now I am using a cartoon of a small boy trying a special pair of glasses. He is obviously searching or studiying something. They might be the type of glasses that you use to see 3-D in the movies. It expresses my nature of searching, trying, analyzing. Trying to understand. It shows the inner child aspect which has been so real to me.

Allen

pufferfish whistle


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#264448 - 11/29/08 11:47 PM Re: Avatars [Re: michael banks]
Sans Logos Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/31/03
Posts: 5791
Loc: in my own world in pittsburgh,...
well i guess mine kinda speaks for itself, so i will spare you the lengthy explanation....aren't you glad???? whistle

_________________________
  1. the past
  2. ReClaiming Now
  3. advocacy


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#264449 - 11/29/08 11:47 PM Re: Avatars [Re: Roofus]
joelRT Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor


Registered: 09/11/08
Posts: 1357
Loc: Québec, Canada
Allen, I'm listening.....

_________________________
My Story 1
My Story 2
The longest journey we take is to self-discovery

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#264450 - 11/30/08 12:16 AM Re: Avatars [Re: king tut]
ptb Offline


Registered: 11/16/08
Posts: 13
Loc: NJ
PTBartman is a name I came up with ages ago for my "on line" presence. I've also use it as a pen name/performance name. I prefer to my "given" nam because tat was givento me by m dadbuser. It's a combination of homage to P.T Barnum d my real first name (try growing up (pre Simpsons)with a name that rhymes with fart).

My avatar is an old friend. When I was growing up I spent a ot of time isolated in my room by my parents so my radio became like a friend. That "big note" was a logo that WABC AM used in the 70s.

Here's a better explaation of what radio meant to me that I posed in another thread...

Quote:
I was this kid see...

Growing up in Hunterdon County NJ. My Childhood wasn't easy, I was Special needs in th early 70's before it was cool.

According to my father, I was just stupid and lazy. You see I was also physically and emotionally abused.

One of the old man's tactics was to alienate me from my peers, my family, teachers, anyone who would show interest in me. If that didn't work. He'd keep telling me they didn't really like me, they just tolerated me. They weren't laughing with they were laughing at me.

And I believed him.

So I found friends who loved me just like I was.

I found heroes who lived in a little magic box I kept by my bed.

My Fantastic Four.

The Wolfman, The Storyteller, The Jokester and Captain Grumpy.

They had hundreds and hundreds of Cohorts, always willing to lend a hand. Play me a song when I was down. Tell me a joke when I needed a laugh.

But they were my favorites.

The Storyteller (Jean Shepherd) told me my bed time story.

The Wolfman (Wolfman Jack) protected me while I waited for the Sandman. And If I got an unwanted visitor at night he comforted me till I calmed down.

Captain Grumpy (Don Imus) Woke me up and made sure I left for school with a smile on my face.



Which leaves "The Jokester"

School was never easy for me. I have ADD and Apsergers Syndrome plus severe neurological trauma from a childhood accident. Nobody knew anything about any of this back then.

There were days when I'd come home so miserable that i didn't want to do anything but lie on my bed and cry.

Those were the days I'd get home grab my transistor radio and my dog and go hide in the woods.

And the Jokester would be there playing just the right song. Making me laugh. Making me forget my problems and even if only for a couple of hours forget everything.

So many of my childhood memories have a WABC soundtrack.

It Was Dan Ingram who taught me to laugh. My love of puns and double entendres came out of a little tinny speaker powered by a 9 volt battery.

Some day I hope our paths will cross and I'll be able to say Thank you.

(I had posted this on a radio Message board and I got an e-mail back from Dan Ingram's son thanking me,so I guess our paths did cross)


_________________________
So what becomes of all the little boys,
Who run away from home,
Well the world just keeps gettin' bigger,
Once you get out on your own,
So here's to all the little boys,
The sandman takes you where,
You'll be sleepin' with a pillowman,
On the nickel over there.
Waits

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#264452 - 11/30/08 12:17 AM Re: Avatars [Re: joelRT]
FormerTexan Offline
Site Administrator
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 09/12/04
Posts: 10948
Loc: Denver, CO
Mine is a drawing of myself Bloom County style, done by a coworker several years ago.

_________________________
List of things ain't nobody got time for:

1. That


If I could meet myself as a boy...

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#264455 - 11/30/08 12:45 AM Re: Avatars [Re: michael banks]
joelRT Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor


Registered: 09/11/08
Posts: 1357
Loc: Québec, Canada
When I first found MS my avatar depicted a long and climbing country road at the end of which was a rising sun.

It was so very representative of how I was feeling at that time in my recovery. I could see in my minds eye how very much more work I still had to do (hence the long road) in order to reach my goal of leaving the darkness behind and to break out into the sunshine. A sunshine that I was blessed to always be able to see off in the distance.

Yet it seemed that the more I walked on that clearly defined road, the longer and steeper it got - oh, I could still see the sunshine, but somehow I was never getting any closer to it no matter how many steps I took.

And then, suddenly, I reached a mile marker by the side of the road that I had not seen until I was right on top of it. There was a note tacked to that marker post and it was just sort of flapping in the breeze. As I got closer, I was surprised to see that the note was addressed to me. It said:

Welcome Joël, to the club of men. You have assuredly shown courage and determination in reaching your goal but most importantly, what has brought you to this juncture is that you humbled yourself before strangers placing your trust in their innate goodness, you opened your heart, revealed your soul and admited that you needed help to become well and whole.You've been embraced, you are loved, you are respected by men who have been able to see into the real you and to like you for what they see. Through your brothers in recovery and in large part due to them, you've become the man your mother said you could never be.

That's when my avatar changed to what it is now, a man-boy on top of the world, jumping with all the vigour in his youthfull heart in spite of his old and weary bones. A new day is rising - I can finally feel the warmth of that sun I chased after for so long.

Of course Utopia is not a reality and I will now have to begin the long descent from the top of the world and for the very first time take my rightfull place amongst the living in the valley below. There is work to be accomplished there for the common good of all - I'm ready to get my hands dirty ( Ijust hope I don't break a nail).



Edited by joelRT (11/30/08 10:25 AM)
Edit Reason: still catn' tepy
_________________________
My Story 1
My Story 2
The longest journey we take is to self-discovery

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#265137 - 12/04/08 01:54 AM Re: Avatars [Re: joelRT]
Nyjah Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/14/07
Posts: 610
I love skating. I've been skating ever since I could remember.


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#265159 - 12/04/08 04:58 AM Re: Avatars [Re: king tut]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Mike,

What a cool idea! Okay, well, for a very long time I had no avatar at all. My screen name "roadrunner" comes from - you guessed it - the Warner Brothers cartoon, which was my favorite as a kid; I still fall into gales of laughter over those cartoons, even though I have seen them all many times.

This is especially relevant to my recovery because when I was a boy I would sit on the floor watching cartoons, and my little sister would come into the room and flop into my lap to watch them with me. It was just an automatic thing. She would come in and I would make a lap for her and hold her close while we watched. If it was a cold day I would pull a blanket around us and we would sit there all toasty warm.

By the time I was 12 things with the abuser were getting really bad and I had been to the brink of suicide twice. One reason I decided not to finish it all was that if I were gone my little sister would have no lap to sit in on Saturday mornings.

In 2006 I fell seriously ill and was off the site for some months. When I returned Alan/Hauser gave me a welcome-back present of a roadrunner avatar. I thought okay, cool, and he helped me install it. Then when I hit 10,000 posts the ModTeam went into my profile and animated the roadrunner. I logged on the next day and there was Roadrunner tearing up the highway on my screen. What a treat for Little Larry! laugh

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

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#265166 - 12/04/08 07:18 AM Re: Avatars [Re: roadrunner]
mapleleafsn Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/03/08
Posts: 131
Loc: Eastern Canada
mine is the "Never Give Up" depiction of a frog trying to stop a herron from swallowing him by sqeezing the birds throat.

I feel that this is where I am in my journey. I have had many stumbles and trials as I seek to restore what was lost many years ago. With the help of very kind and unjudgemental people to encourage me and lift me when I fall I will continue as long as it takes to be content in this life

_________________________
When the pain of remaining the same finally outweighs the pain of change---things will begin.... life is meant to be enjoyed not endured.

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#265205 - 12/04/08 12:51 PM Re: Avatars [Re: mapleleafsn]
Roofus Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/24/08
Posts: 233
Loc: Utah
My Avatar has a lot of very deep personal meaning to me, as I'm sure everyone's does. I'll share what the symbol is, and some of it's personal meaning. smile

It's one of the 8 auspicious symbols of Buddhism, called the "endless knot." A lot of people think it's a Celtic knot, but it's very different. It represents the intense interplay of opposing forces which ultimately results in their union/connection, and ultimately their harmony. The fact that the knot has no beginning and no end suggests harmony and ultimate wisdom.

So... the personal meaning. There have been many times in my life where I have felt these strong opposing forces at play. Either me against another, or even watching from a distance two forces against each other. Some of these events have resulted in a great deal of pain and sorrow at the time, leaving scars. Ultimately, I see these events affecting my life as a whole, and they become a part of me, my identity. I'm not saying that all of them end up pretty, or that I find happiness from them. But, I strive to accept the truth and acknowledge my whole self.

As an example... I was married once (yes surprise surprise). After just a year of marriage my wife was pregnant with our baby when she, and the baby were broadsided by a drunk driver. She was placed in the hospital, lost, with severe trauma pretty much everywhere, lost the baby. I ultimately had to make a decision to keep her alive on life support although practically brain dead, or withdraw support and let her move on. I let her move on. Two opposing forces that stuck with me for a very long time, and over the years I have watched these forces come closer and closer together and knot around each other, weaving themselves as integral parts of my life. I can't say they are in harmony or at peace with my life yet, but I see it happening, and eventually it will.

I try to take that approach with all opposing forces in my life. Some of them unite and integrate into my life rather soon. Others, such as this case, take years, decades... perhaps a lifetime.

Allen


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