I didn't realize it that day, but April 27th, 2005 would mark a milestone in my life. This was not a milestone of accomplishment however, but one that marked the beginning of a journey that has taught me some of the most important lessons I've learned thus far in my life.
That day I became a part of something larger than myself. That day I joined a community of people that were not only partaking in active dialogue about the future, but engaged in its' creation. And that day, I took on a new name for myself.
That name was 'Lyre Calliope'.
Within the virtual world of Second Life, I met and collaborated with many amazing people that I still admire and am friends with today. I went on to meet many of them in person at conferences that I attended, volunteered for and/or helped organize. While they knew that my RL (Real Life) name was Timothy Moenk, I was most often simply and fondly called 'Lyre'.
Those were exciting days. I was able to not only experience the creation of a hype cycle around an ascendant and fascinating futuristic technology, but had the opportunity to partake in the cocreation of said technology and its' community before the hype cycle even began. I established a network of creative professionals who showed me how to push the boundaries while also keeping my passion at the center of my life, and these experiences gave me the courage to go out on my own into the local tech community and join in the early Atlanta dialogue around social media.
Lyre Calliope, the avatar, was a catalyst for me. Through those virtual eyes and hands, I grew into adulthood. My future began with Lyre Calliope.
Today, I've decided to take this name up again. While I have no plans to change my name legally at this time, I do intend for Lyre Calliope to be my primary identity within the public sphere. I have a number of reasons for doing this both personal and non, but the primary is this: as Lyre Calliope I began to have my first taste of what it is like to truly be the person I aspire to be.
Today, I want to share this sense. I want to inspire others to be the people that they aspire to be Furthermore, I want to explore the endless possibilities that exist in the world around us and do so with others joining me in wonderment!
And what better way for me to begin working towards this goal than to take on the name of the muse I virtually embodied within a virtual world nearly half a decade ago? And while I'm at it, why not build a brand new RL avatar and network around this persona?
'Timothy Moenk' isn't going anywhere. This is the name my parents gave to me, and it's a great name! (despite the fact that I share it with my father who occasionally messes with my SEO...) However, Timothy Moenk as a public persona on the internet is at an end. I'm making all my old accounts private, deleting others, and rebuilding my online presence from scratch. TimothyMoenk.net will remain up and running, but I won't be using it as a primary portal for introductions.
If you've known me up to this point in my life, I would be honored if you would continue to call me Timothy, Tim, T-Dawg, TimPotent, Vitamin T, or however else it is that you've come to know me. But from now on I will be introducing myself as Lyre Calliope, and I would be absolutely delighted if you'd join me in my continued adventures!
They start with this post:
And continue here:
Signing off for now,
Timothy D Moenk
A.K.A. Captain Lyre Calliope
p.s. fyi, it's pronounced 'Lear' and 'Lyr'
p.p.s. You'd think having a history of having a hard to pronounce name like 'Moenk' would cause me to seek out a name that's EASIER to pronounce.. but noooooo, I've got to make things harder on myself.