Michael Linden’s slippers, a gift from me a number of years ago. I was once told that Lab employees aren’t allowed to accept gifts, but he not only accepted these, he even put them out in his home (SLurl), now renamed Hotel Adriano since he has left The Lab’s employ. It was in this mansion in March 2015 that I met with Michael to interview him for the Bay City Post about his involvement with the development of Bay City (with the former Blue Linden, whom I interviewed in August 2015; see both here).
Adorable as Michael was in his Mole avatar, I’ve seen him in several forms, including human. I asked him about this during the interview:
UP-S: Do you consider your Second Life persona a “character” or a representation of who you are in Real Life?
ML: More of a representation. I haven’t really been involved in role-playing in SL.
In any incarnation he was always approachable and fun-spirited. Once when encountering my Zyx Flux alt while she was dressed as Wednesday Addams, he rewarded her for finding a flaw in a Mole build: [11:09] Michael Linden: ‘+1 Mole Point for Wenesday’
So far, everything I’ve written here makes it sound like Michael has passed away. Far from it, as my friend Marianne McCann wrote in a guest post on Inara Pey’s blog, Living in a Modem World. In talking with Marianne last night, though, we both felt like it was a death in the family when it was confirmed he was hanging up his crown as King of the Moles.
If Our World really has celebrities (SLebrities?), many would list any Linden as one. Look at the excitement that happens whenever you meet one in-world. Even with Michael on my Friends list and the way he readily answered my IMs without fuss, I still had a bit of that awe one feels around celebrities. Consider that in his 13 years with The Lab, Michael had his paw in just about everything: Bay City, the railroads, various attractions, even janitor work when a prim or two got out of line. That earns the little Talpidae some awe. I hope to meet Michael in his civilian avatar so I can give him a well-deserved hug.