Wednesday, October 11, 2023

It's not you, it's me

I really like Alan Jacobs and today I've found another reason. Because this describes me, too:
Pretty much all my life I have been fighting against my instinctive introversion, and now that I have turned 65, I’ve decided to stop fighting. I hope people will see this as the legitimate prerogative of a senior citizen.

When someone – anyone, except those I know very well indeed – asks me to have coffee or a beer, I am filled with a feeling not far from dread. But I have always thought that I shouldn’t give in to the anxiety; instead, I have tried to push back. It’s just grabbing a cup of coffee and having a little chat, for heaven’s sake! I tell myself. You’re not being taken in by the Stasi for interrogation. So I make myself say yes, and I make myself go…and while I can manage to be friendly and engaged during the meeting — indeed, more than friendly, way too talkative, out of sheer nervousness — when we’re done I want to go home and sleep for a day or two. ....

...I will with great delight have coffee or beer or dinner with my dearest friends, of whom I am blessed (despite my weird disability) to have a few.

But the main thing is this: I have done what people do, my life makes a reasonable showing. I have a house full of books and music and movies, and I shall go back to them now. If you write to invite me out for coffee or a beer, I will probably send you a link to this post. So please remember: It’s not you, it’s me.

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