Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Script for a Jester's Fears

I am still alive internet! I have braved the multiple assaults of summer man flu and survived! The sun is shining, this year's costume projects are progressing nicely, my yugioh deck is now up to tournament standard and life is good. Or is it?
Apparently there is more to life than first turn Shi-En
This week I want to talk about why I'm bad with people. Or more accurately why I'm good with people but for the wrong reasons. First of all let me say that I'm not misanthropic, I don't hate people and I don't sit in my room all day on the computer hiding from society at large. I have however realised that I have developed some quite alarming behavioural patterns and attitudes as a young adult which could lead to issues further down the line.

I Often Find Social Interaction Draining, I Relax on my own

I've always been happy in my own company - one of the main reasons I have so many hobbies - and thats fine and totally healthy.
One man Wolfpack 4 lyfe
The issue is that I find general social interaction (such as at parties, work and larger social gatherings) quite draining. I often leave these events feeling like I have lost energy, not been energised by the company of my peers. At rest I am generally still and quiet; I don't really socialise to relax. As a result I have recently noticed that I actively avoid some forms of social interaction in lieu of more solitary pursuits; I would rather spend an evening playing Tf2 with friends than actually seeing them face to face for example.
The clubs are just as crowded on the internet as irl these days
The oddest thing is that I'm very gregarious and apparently have good social skills; I've been known to hold entire rooms with anecdotes and I tend to make people laugh a lot. You'd think that I'd be boosted by such experiences, not used up by them but alas the latter is usually true. Luckily I think I know why.

I play the Jester Because I want to be Liked

I think it's possible that I developed a keen grasp of humour at an early age because I wanted to be liked and that need for acceptance has grown into a refined persona I use to 'fit in' as an adult. This leaves me in an interesting position as I now essentially have two personalities: the solitary, quiet, vaguely artistic gent who paints models and makes costume props and keeps people at arms length and the confident, roguish young man with a twinkle in his eye and a need to be liked and laughed at. Is one the more essential expression of self? Are both healthy? Are both rooted in some third all encompassing personaily which is simultaniously creative and self depricating, in need of both intimacy and more space to breathe? Who am I really? Should I listen to less Linkin Park?

What am I Trying to Say

I guess I'm essentially two people. I wear a jester's mask in public a lot of the time and that's something I've done for as long as I could crack a joke, it's too late to stop now. As my personality has developed so has the mask so it must be as much a part of me as anything else. While being a solitary artistic brooding type may be easier its far sillier and I'm not going to win many friends doing it so I should accept that not every social interaction is going to enrich me as a person. I have friends and people close to me who do energise me so I should spend more time with them, not create solitary projects to give me reasons to avoid them because it's less hassle. People can be difficult but the more you go out there, the more likely you are to meet someone you really connect with and that is truthfully all a lot of us are after. So it's time for me to stop worrying about me and start looking at other people. They deserve a good laugh to.

Stay Crunchy Internet

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