Two nights in a hotel in San Juan and what do we do? We play spades instead of hitting the bars. Here’s two nights worth of our scores. (Me, Marie, Scott, and Marc) Things didn’t go well for Scott around the halfway point. Incidentally, I’ve developed an excel spreadsheet that will keep track of spades scores for a group of four.
I’m getting older. It’s not profound. At the end of the day, it’s probably better that I keep getting older. I figure if I stop doing that, I’d have to start commenting on how well I’m being dead. I’m thinking more about getting older as my birthday approaches. This year I’ve been thinking way too much about it. I’m turning 37. I know, some of you that are reading this figure that’s young and that may be. That doesn’t make my thoughts less valid, so go be logical somewhere else.
Being older than I was a day ago isn’t really the point. I’m fine with being older. I guess I’m thinking about my place in life. I have a great family. A great job. I’m back in school and doing well with that, finally. I couldn’t be happier with being who I am as a human. I like me and I like where I am, fundamentally, in life. From the outside looking in, my life is probably enviable. Probably isn’t too far fetched, I’ve been told as much in the past. I can’t complain about the places I have been, am going, or plan to go. I’d be jealous of me.
What has got me thinking this year is that I login far too often to social networks. I see pictures of people I follow at meet ups having fun. I see Facebook friends at Halloween parties. I see people getting together to watch a game or tailgate. I see people doing things with people. Not with the people that live in their house. They are out with friends. Doing friendly things. I don’t. I haven’t really since I lived in Hawaii nearly 20 years ago. It’s been that long since I had a group of friends that I saw all the time and went out with. My adult experience has been that friends are no longer people you hang out with. They’re people you see at holidays, your kids birthday’s, or the rare movie. I am jealous of all of the people online who have friendships that exist outside email and instant messaging. I joke with a friend of mine that we have to schedule a quarterly event just to see each other. It honestly works out that way.
This isn’t a slight against the people I call friends. This isn’t about you. It’s about me. I am a loner and have been for a long time. I don’t want to be, but life gets in the way and having friends hasn’t been a priority for me. Friends are something I’d love to have, but I don’t work too hard at it. Partly, it’s a time issue. Mostly, it is a fear of rejection. Why would I want to invest time or energy meeting new people if they’re going to disappear from my life anyway? It seems like a losing proposition to me. I would rather spend my time with my family or a video game. They’re probably not going anywhere. Probably.
Our experiences make us who we are. Mine have made me weary of personal relationships. My parents are divorced. My dad has been divorced twice. Each time, I met a new family. Had new siblings. I know without a doubt he’s where he needs to be now and I don’t have to meet anyone new. I’ve been divorced twice. Uprooted after each. New town, new house. New state in some cases. I haven’t had many actual relationships because I don’t like investing time or energy in things that I don’t see having value.
I’ve mentioned it before, I was a Navy kid and moved constantly as a kid. Before turning 17, I lived in 7 different places. That stunts the fostering of friendships. I know precisely one person from my life before I turned 12. I “talk” to a few from my teenage years. I barely interact with anyone I met in my 20s. I suspect I’ll say the same things about my 30s when I’m 45. By then, I hope I’ve broken my cycle of mistrust and unhealthy relationships, but I have no experience to suggest otherwise.
I’m not asking to be fixed. I’m not asking for sympathy. I’m just using my blog as a place to get a thought out of my head. Trying to wrap my mind around how I’ve ended up here and maybe find a way to be a different human in the future. Some of you reading this are good people. Some of you I probably miss daily. Some of you I wish I knew better. (I actually wish I knew everyone I knew better)
Way back in July, Marie and I ventured out to San Diego to attend Comic-Con. Turns out, we took tons of pictures and even promised to post some of them for friends. You’d think owning 5 cameras and having 2 computers on my desk would make moving pictures around trivial. You’d be wrong. Between procrastination and laziness, 4 months have elapsed and I’ve finally posted the SDCC pictures to Flickr. Follow the links below to enjoy the pics.
(SDCC 2010 Part 1) http://www.flickr.com/photos/siraim/sets/72157625365144251/
(SDCC 2010 Part 2) http://www.flickr.com/photos/siraim/sets/72157625490270652/
I learned an important lesson about myself this week. I may have already known this. I am a social introvert. I’ve avoided parties, get togethers, meet and greets, or any other gathering of people where conversation, mingling or boldness is required.
Give me a small group of people I kind of know and I’m all set. I’ll find a way to blend in and have fun. Dinner with one or two people? Lots of direct conversation and interaction. I’m ok with that.
I think 5 or 6 people in a group is sufficiently large. Anything bigger and I disappear into the crowd. You’ll probably find me ensuring the load bearing wall doesn’t move or counting ceiling tiles over and over. Eventually, I will awkwardly back away from the conversation and plan my exit strategy.
This is why I say I’m antisocial. It’s not that I don’t like people. I generally do. People are almost universally interesting to me. I’m fascinated by just about each and every person I meet. There’s always a story, a passion or something that makes them unique. I love taking the time to get to know people.
Chances are good, if I need to go someplace where a big group is meeting and I have to mingle to find things out about people, I’m going to pass.
The only places where all of the above is untrue? With my close friends (those that I have) and at work. For all you serial minglers out there that meet hundreds of people socially every year with glee, I probably meet three times as many at work.
(Why did I take a job that makes me talk in front of people? There’s a blog for another day.)
So, what I’m saying is that I’d love to meet all of you. I’d love to learn all about who you are and mostly what makes you tick. If you’re going to insist that I do this in social situations that involve mingling, I’ll probably pass so I don’t have to feel intimidated in your big group.
Besides, who needs personal interaction? I have social networks to fill that void in my life.