Verbal Remedy AKA Denise

Verbal Remedy AKA Denise
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Del Mar, California, The One That's In A State Of Steep Decline
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January 18
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Columnist, http://www.doesthismakesense.com
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Much preferred to the alternative.
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Born. Grew up. Kept growing up. Started growing older. Still at both the growing up and growing older. Stay tuned.

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APRIL 9, 2009 4:45PM

I'll Show You Mine if You Show Me Yours

Rate: 51 Flag
As if there aren't already enough ways to screw around and fritter away what's left of this earthly existence in front of a computer screen...Ladies and Gentlemen, I'd like to introduce you to My Virtual Model. (And yes, they do have a Gentlemen's option.)
 Comfy and Onstage!  mvm

My Virtual Model™ is the online shopping equivalent of a Wii Mii. An electronic doppelganger, customizable to a remarkable degree (the face actually surprised me). A software twin, built with my height and weight and haircut (sort of) and features. 

Her purpose, ostensibly, is to allow me to virtually try on outfits I might like to purchase. And it's really a very good idea, isn't it? To attempt to mock up how an outfit offered through an online retailer will look on you?

Except I have never purchased an outfit she's tried on.

Mostly because honestly, despite the fact that we're supposed to be twins, the bitch just plain wears clothes a lot better than I do.


 Some User Feedback for the Developers of My Virtual Model

Ok, guys. I first logged on with one of these things back when you were in beta and had no actual retailer relationships. I'm kind of surprised to see that Land's End has stuck with you through thick and thin--I mean, geez, it must be 8 years already. I like what you've done with the face and hair upgrades and the ability to turn the model.

But.

Really, My Virtual Modelis still, despite your best efforts, useless to me. All these years of coding, and still no option to input my actual measurements? What's the point? You're showing me how somebody with an idealized, built-for-clothes body of my height and weight will look in these pristine, wrinkle-free clothes. Trust me when I tell you, if I ever were to hit "Purchase This Look," upon receiving the package and donning the outfit, I would not resemble My Virtual Model™.

Exhibit A: The Breast Problem. The only two options for the size of a lady's rack are "small-medium" and "medium-large." Sorry, MVM designers: Titty Fail! 

To accurately represent my body, My Virtual Model needs a third choice: a straightforward "Very Large" would do, although it might be more fun if you got playful and labeled that option "Awfully Huge" or "Downright Unweildy."

I'm sure there are ladies at the other end of the spectrum who would also like an option that doesn't munge together Small and Medium, which, last I checked, are in fact two very different sizes/proportions (except at Starbuck's, where they're Tall and Grande, but nobody has Tall tits. So never mind).

Because of your artificially limited choices (doubtless based on clothing manufacturers' artificially limited manufacturing specs), all tops look charming and attractive on My Virtual Model™.

She can wear blouses! With buttons in front! (The last time I tried that in my non-Virtual life, the girls' escape plan worked, and I threw away the two or three remaining tops in my wardrobe that were not made of stretch-knit).

I deeply envy My Virtual Model's proportional rack.

Exhibit B: The Waist Problem

Users are offered a choice between a "defined" waist and a "less defined" waist. That's great, as far as it goes. And I've already selected an hourglass as my basic working shape--so, why is My Virtual Modelstill so comparatively thick in the middle?

She doesn't begin to resemble my real-life hourglass shape. I have an 8-inch difference between chest and waist, and a 9-inch difference between waist and hips. (Yes, I get compliments on my generous behind from Sir Mix-A-Lot fans, thank you very much.) Your designer's notion of a "defined" waist appears to top out at a 4-inch difference.

Because of this, My Virtual Model's pants always fit her perfectly, with no giant gaps in the waist. She will always be able to pull jeans right off the rack and wear them beautifully. (The bitch.) She will never need to take each new purchase to a tailor in order to have a few inches of waistband chopped out.


I could go on, but this post is really a call to my OS peeps.

YOU show me YOURS.

Go make your My Virtual Model and offer up your own opinions about whether it's actually shaped enough like you to be useful.

(Lonnie Lazar's participation is mandatory, and he must dress his double in only a thong. The color is his only choice.)

mvm2 mvmswimsuit

(OK. Maybe the black-and-purple dress...oh, but wait. Those twins aren't going to hoist themselves, and there's no place for proper bra straps...)

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Oh, and by the way, Mr. Remedy just called with the news we've been expecting: We're a one-income family as of today. Mine. (It's been a long time coming, and overall I think it will be a good thing for him, but still, yowza. No pressure.)

I'd rather talk about (and see) My Virtual Model™s, if that's OK with y'all.
VR, when I worked in manufactutring, during the industrial revolution, textile manufacturers had a concept to body scan a person, and make custom outfits in the store. All automated. the customer would pick out the fabrics and the machine would just whip it up. It never made it to fruition because of cheap offshore labor, that killed American manufacturing. I'm surprised to see this concept still on life support in a somewhat mutant form. The concept, not your form.

Sorry that you went from DINK to SINK today. My condolences.
Ack! I hate it already. I'm a "pear" with a small waist - my pants never fit either. Until they come up with the pear option, I'm not interested.

Ever notice how they make guys' clothing with neck size, arm length and all of that other cool stuff, but we're S - M - L yet all the same length?!!

OK, I'll stop before the rant gets too long...
I hate clothes shopping too - virtual or otherwise.
Sheepy, I have long considered that I either need to get back up to speed with sewing skills, or hire a seamstress to make things custom-tailored to my body. Wish your presto-outfitto machine existed now! (Not that I'll be buying any outfits soon).

Rant on, Blue. But they DO have a pear-shaped model; c'mon, go make yourself and show me!
You keep raising the f*cking bar, dammit!

But one thing is true, we'll always have McTasty and I will always hope the girls' escape plan works at least once while I'm around. i heve a feeling they could bolt from the Furious Flounce™ blouse with just the littlest bit of encouragement. I'm just sayin'.
OHhh.............that red dress!
Define "waist". On men, it seems to vary in latitude depending on what size belt they own, and can be as low as the hips or above the navel.
I ve done this! Will do..
Yea! I have a playmate! Thank you, Persephone.

I shall now go create the most RIDICULOUS ensemble I can and post it here later.
I have been to Land's End and made my model before. Please tell me I don't look as frumpy as this girl! Give me trick dressing room mirrors any time.

Loved "Downright Unwieldy."
(Don't disappoint me, Lonnie.)
--rated-- for writing about titties and ass (virtual or not)
If it's that limited, they probably don't have an option for wings . . .
I didn't want to shop anyway.....Verbal, remember the pencil test? Where you could go bra-less if you could NOT hold a pencil under your boob? I can hold a damn hairdryer (and have). No hands! So if your boobs are "Downright Unweildy" ....what are mine? I haven't owned a "button up shirt" since I was in high school.
Yeah...my fat arse want's wings too, dammit.

Well..not on my actual arse. A little higher.
I created a MVM back when Lane Bryant first started using it and I completely agree with you! It's like that girl has a ramrod up her back, making her the most posture-perfect evildoer EVER.

I'll totally show you mine... what better way to kill the last hour of this workday?
(OK, I fixed the link. Thanks, Lonnie!)
The black and purple dress with boots is awesome!! they make bras for those kinds of dresses VR.
Why does that bathing suit exist?
OK, Lonnie just called to tell me it's hard to find the guy version (which is now called Brand Me--go figure) so I've linked to the Boy Builder(TM) up top at the beginning of the post.

Ariana, I've got a couple of convertible bras. Sometimes they work, but the string neckline on the purple dress just wouldn't cover the strap. And me + strapless = bra around my waist in a couple of hours if I don't spend every few minutes constantly yoinking the contraption northward.
Con: I'm a big fan of the belt-worn-just-under-manboobs look, myself. So sexxxxaaaay!

Gary, I used to own a black version of the red dress a few sizes ago. So I do know that style works. I should bite the bullet and buy it, huh.

Stellaa, I DEFINITELY wanna see yours. Preferably dressed in something frilly and pink. ;-)

Annette, you're right--I don't feel nearly as frumpy as MVM. Even when I was 30 lbs. thinner, MVM had an "Aunt Hattie" thing going on that made all my virtual outfits look like I should be teaching Kindergarten.

Owl: No wings. Thighs, though...

Fabflamingo: It has never occurred to me to attempt the Hair Dryer Test, but now you've gone and inspired me...

NavelGazer, didn't I read something recently about somebody getting kicked off of Second Life because the other Second Lifers didn't like her, or something? I'm sticking here. Last thing I need is an additional online timesuck.
Yeah, I had created an avatar a Long time ago (I'd forgotten about her, till I tried to create an acct. and one was already there). Big problem with the boobs - as in mine are too big. And the waist! And the ass! And I have longer legs than I'm supposed to, so I already know what pants and jeans I cannot buy, and that's all they have on there.

We should invent a site that Works! $$$ !
Hey, I recognize the bathing suit: It's what came on the original Barbie, I swear to god. The one with the blonde ponytail? Anybody old enough to remember it besides me? -rated-
Thanks, Jane. I've been hoping the axe would fall for at least two months now...he was bored out of his skull and despised most of his coworkers anyway, so, yeah. It's a good thing. :-)
nice. i remember they had some kind of deal with the knot, that wedding website. i had one, it sucked and that was in 2002.
Well the face is generic, but the proportions are fairly accurate - here's the virtual artsfish . She wanted to moon you all, but MVM didn't comply......
Dude! The post was great, but I'm so sorry about Mr. Remedy. I feel ya on the hard times.
rated
OK, I would just like to say now that EVERYONE is better looking than their model.

Artfish...Verbal..dnell...for reals.
Sorry to hear your news, VR. Now onto the important stuff. I created a virtual image and it doesn't really look like my body type due to the stupidly general questions you pointed out. Grr....
I went to create a model and apparently I've been here before but I do not remember...unless it was part of Land's End?
The virtual me actually looks a lot like the real me. So that's scary.
My goodness...I can't believe you can' t put it your actual measurements. It's just another way to f$#k with our body image - all the while thinking they are doing us a favor! Peeshaw.

I like your downright unwieldy breasts...they sound dangerous!
OK, I've seen you in a bating suit and you look MUCH BETTER than the prison escapee on the beach here.

I tried the virtual model thing, and similarly to real life, the fashion choices for us gentlemen are far more limited than they are for you ladies. PLUS, they wouldn't let me dress my male virtual self in any of the women's clothes! Have they no sense of fun or humor? Anyway, I put a little something together, but you're going to have to use your imagination to picture me in my hot pink thong over here.
Lonnie, you look like Brad Pitt in a onesie
Sandra, you nailed it. Brad Pitt in a onesie, indeed. :)
I love this but I just don't think I can make myself do it. It took me 45 years to accept my body and this could turn that all around...but just incase, do they give the option for "I nursed 3 kids and my boobs hang down to my belly button?"
Oh, so many comments, so little space:

Verbal: In Neal Stephenson's "SnowCrash," to facilitate building an avatar for the "Metaverse," many people get either a Clint (if they're a guy) or a Brandy (if they're a girl). Stephenson writes, "The user can select three breast sizes: impossible, improbable, and ludicrous."

Sheepdog: May I refer you to this clip from Woody Allen's "Sleeper": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VV2N4KSh3x4

bluesurly: Trust me: those extra measurements don't help when you're a pear-shaped guy, either.

In shopping for Sami for gifts, I've discovered two things: 1) Just get a gift card, because 2) her figure doesn't come near to fitting "standard" dress sizes. ("Just don't choose any clothes for me" was her comment one Christmas.)

Verbal (2): I've been the sole earner for our family for the last year or so, and the word "constant panic" doesn't even begin to describe it.
I'm not sure how to post links inside comments, so you'll have to cut'n'paste.

http://www.mvm.com/cs/media/p/31280.aspx

The bitch looks nothing like me, and yet she's the closest I can get in terms of hair color/skin color/eye, nose, and lip shape/basic body type.

For one, she has normal-sized arms. I do not have normal sized arms. They are three inches longer than they should be for my height. (This is why I rarely wear long-sleeved button-downs.) And they are neither skinny nor "toned." Oh no. I have arms that verk the vheat fields for Mother Russia. It does not matter if I lift weights or whatever--the muscles are under a layer of fat that ain't going nowhere. And square shoulders. The wrong outfit can make me look like a linebacker.

Oh, and my belly, while not large, is jiggly. It wiggles and wobbles. It does not need to see the light of day. I do not want a bikini.

Oh, and one of my legs is slightly longer than the other, which is noticeable in that my shoulders and hips aren't the same height, which can look REALLY weird depending on the neckline of the shirt.

My avatar, however, looks pretty damn good with an Afro. I might have to try that out. (grins)
Hmm, the male version of the software doesn't play well with my system. That, or it's recognizing its inability to capture my godlike physique with mere numbers. I suspect the former.

My best to Mr. Verbal; that truly sucks.
As I suspected, they wouldn't let me join...something about cookies, and frankly I would have eaten them. I did however get a wonderful laugh from your post and the comments. Thanks!
that black and purple is a totally hot look. i'm sorry, what was this about again?
So not loving the clothing choices - lets not even discuss the figure issues - and the hairstyles - and the faces...

So I made
Sorry - for some reason my link didn't work. You can check out my model on my blog.
I'm trying to upload a photo of my face onto my virtual model as I type this, but all's I'm getting is this little box in my crotch area with an arrow swirling around.

Damn, that feels good.
OK, I'll bite... against my better judgement. Brief nudity alert
I checked the site and they already have me. I'm the default guy. ; )
Interesting post, maybe they will heed your call. In some department stores they have scanning booth that takes all your measurements and gives you a print of what sizes would fit you best.
Alright Verb. Put your right hand on something Christopher Hitchens and swear... The day I look like that, that, that doddering hetero Dockers-clad wife swapping capon of a man, you will fix me a nice phenobarb cocktail and hold my hand while I make a gracious exit.
"The last time I tried that in my non-Virtual life, the girls' escape plan worked, and I threw away the two or three remaining tops in my wardrobe that were not made of stretch-knit."

Hallelujah sister. And this appears really terrible -- with all the 3D design talent in the world, this should be much better in every single way.
I'm not sure this sort of thing is meant for someone like me. My entire wardrobe consists of black t-shirts, flannel shirts, and cargo pants. When it comes to fashion I am a Luddite.
Well, I can't figure out how to capture or embed mine, so I can't make my own post. Here are my two feeble attempts at this link:

http://www.mvm.com/cs/media/p/31318.aspx

I'm not even sure the link will work! I'm so computer impaired, it's embarrassing. But, um, I hope I look better in clothes than this model indicates. :(
My model works out and wears party dresses. She is shy about downloading.

here she is

http://www.mvm.com/cs/media/p/31319.aspx
Great post Verbal,

Sorry to hear about Mr. Remedy. Hopefully there is plenty of "McTastey" on hand...
p.s.
The model does look a lot like you but I agree with your "Titty Fail" analysis. “Jumbo Jiggle Twins” or “Gigantic Globes” might be appropriate (fun) options.
So, OK, everybody else was having so much fun I decided to try it. Here's mine:
Downright Unweildy! Does that come in a muffin top too?
Fun! I want to play too!
http://open.salon.com/blog/somyr_perry/2009/04/09/virtual_dress_up
Hilarious! I have the extra large rack issue but my waist to hip ratio is nonexistent. Do they have an "apple shaped" option? I do have slim hips and long legs but...well, let's not give it all away. ...
So, somebody please explain to me how to capture mine and put it in my own post. Please?
I went to play with the male model. Could even enter my measurements, but the male model never changed. Just for fun, I increased my chest size about 20 inches. Nope. The model looked at me with the same dead, yet oddly sexual, pectoral muscles.

At least the female models change sizes.
My twins were fraternal, rather than identical. There is no button for that, either.

Although I eventually found the pear v apple v hourglass button and got an approximation of my shape.
Come check me out. If U dare...
http://open.salon.com/blog/trudge164/2009/04/09/i_showed_verbal_mine_do_u_like
wow, you're gorgeous. love the red dress and really like the black and purple. you could put the twins in a strapless bra... never mind, those are a big pain. i'm sorry about mr. remedy being downsized. carp. and big thank you for this thing. enjoyed all of the results. love love love and gratitude for some cheer ona dark day.
You look good in boots, Verbal.
You know where this is headed. Soon, a compilation of data based on past choices, your friends' and coworker reactions, your estimated time of last purchase, and Kohl's will select a tasty ensemble for you, ship it, and bill your account. You need do nothing but continue to pay their credit card, which will never be negotiable on the humanless phone tree.
I'm very afraid~
I'm late to the dance, but I'm a good dancer. I've been focused on the super model within. So, I had to search around and dig out my inner boi.I've digested the child within, so this is all I have.

Love your model!
I don't believe this! Our heads were definitely knocked together at birth... I'd already written about this for my next post, complete with my 3 year old Virtual Model from Land's End AND my Virtual Face with which to try on glasses.

Hair's longer now (TG they don't show aging) but I will redress her/me and present us to you shortly. (Are you sure you don't have access to my hard drive?)

Oh, and of course yours is so much better than mine.
I'm afraid to do this -- what if my virtual model looks like Marjorie Main? (although I believe I'm shorter than she was...)
I love your attitude about Mr. Remedy's job situation. That must help a lot. And I love the way you distract yourself. This is very fun.
I tried and things seemed to be going well, then all of a sudden a complete and utter breakdown ocurred, I was unable to view the images I had labored these many hours to create for my OS friends, as well as for myself of course, but really for you OS people.

I am bereft. And exhausted. Such a trial, not unlike childbirth, but not child as reward.

pshaw
I had a similar experience, Ablonde. Three very nice outfits (well, none of them were really my style but I did the best I could), and then, nothing. 'Tis frustrating.
I wash my hands of the whole damn thing!

I encourage everyone else to as well.

If anyone is still about I urge you to join me for a bloody mary or whatever your choice is for a kick in the pants after a great bit of bullshit.
I've seen these but never used them. For one thing, I don't want to see some cloned version of me trying on clothes that maybe I shouldn't be considering for various physical and age-appropriate reasons. Let me make my own mistakes! Also, don't suppose my freaky twin will reflect some specific shape issues that make me who I am, clothes or not. Love the post, btw...
There's something very disturbing about this. Now that your alter-ego has a whole new wardrobe, I'd worry that it will escape into the internet and take up a life of its own. Grand Theft Auto isn't on-line, is it? And yikes - now there's a whole slew of OS alter- egos roaming around looking for trouble!
As I ma in NYC and virtually shopping (if only by looking in the display windows), I can assure you that the only thing that would look good on me right now is a long sleeve maxi dress (remember those?) made exclusively of $100 bills. Suddenly, I wish I was a LOT bigger. You go girl. I see I am missing out on ALL the fun.... I miss you guys!
Do you have any idea how many bloggers have responded to this piece by putting up Virtual Model posts today? This may be the new Cabbage Patch Doll!
Awesome post.

As for the site, it doesn't work very well for those of us with unusual proportions. They need to ask for measurements, not just height and weight.

I have a 36" inseam but only 35" hips - I'm pretty damn lanky. But my avatar in no way reflected the freakish length of my arms and legs. She was much more ordinarily proportioned than I am. Unfortunately, the site didn't have a setting for "beanpole."
My problem is that I keep tweaking the model and she still looks too weird. But enjoying all of you guys.
Funny, "Wii Mii." I don't want a clone to try on clothes for me, but to do many other things I'd rather not bother with. Anyway, it's good to see you've learned the lesson of how to entitle posts in OS. Good one!
a virtual paperdoll!!! yay!
Sorry to hear about the Mister's job sitch. My Mister got laid off in the last economic downturn and it was rough going money-wise for a while, but we tried to look at it as a second honeymoon--without the gourmet food, copious wine and world-class views of the first honeymoon, of course.
I'm still waiting for the thong.:)
I had tried virtual model a while back and found these options were missing:

Backside that can hold several crayons under the crease.
Saddlebags in usual and unusual places.
Flabby upper arms and droopy knee skin.
Hunched shoulders unless tension raises them into ear area.
Red happy face "tattoo stamps" all over courtesy of the kiddo.
Oh noes, Sally! I didn't mean to step all over your next post! This just sort of came to me yesterday as I was trying to amuse myself. Post yours too! I'd love your take on things.

Thanks for verifying, everybody, that we are not yet in the era of the perfect cyborg-self.

EPriddy, I bwah'd about your fraternal twins. :-) You could say I have a Big Sister and a Bigger Sister, actually.

Dana: Do you know how to use Paint? Do a screen capture? It's really not that hard. 1) Make your model. 2) Hit the "PrtScrn" button on the keyboard. 3) Go open Paint (or another image editor) 4) New Image-->Paste 5) Crop the screen capture to just select the MVM 6) Save as JPG.

Did that help?

I AM LOVING EVERYBODY'S MVMS (and creative interpretations thereof)! Thank you! Mr. Remedy says "Awwww."
Hey Verbal - someone has made good use of your post (I think - don't know which came first) already!! http://open.salon.com/blog/jane_smithie/2009/04/10/freaky_in_paris
You're much prettier than this lady! Her haircut alone would not allow me to use her as my dressing avatar. (and just read your comment about the lay-off - oh no!)
I was intrigued and decided to play along. My experiment is posted here: http://open.salon.com/blog/iamsurly/2009/04/10/how_to_model_in_front_of_a_virtual_fun-house_mirror_1.

Very fun and frightening :)
Do you have any idea how many bloggers have responded to this piece by putting up Virtual Model posts today?

Cool. Open Salon is turning into a low-tech version of The Matrix. (I can't wait until they add kung fu.)
I missed this while I was offline and just saw Sally's mention of it. I'm not sure I dare do this!! I hate even regular photos of me.
Hey Verbal- I did mine (had to make her 20 lbs lighter to get her to even look close, is that cheating?) but I much prefer SL clothing :)