Happy (?) Hour
I’m going to include this brief story because I feel it’s important to highlight the difference between group dynamics and one-on-one dynamics.
What is it about a group of people that have begun a conversation that just makes you feel so shut out? Tonight my building had a happy hour and I really forced myself to go. I knew I should. I know it would be good to meet people, since I don’t have a dog and therefore there is no natural segue for me to use to meet people in the building.
I have to say that, eventually, it was fine. In that situation, I just need one person to turn ever so slightly toward me or walk up and ask if they can join a conversation I am in. Instead, I took a couple walking up to join a conversation I was in as me being in their way as they tried to make it to the bar cart. Okay; we can do this. We can be social.
Probably the thing I am worst at is ending conversations and just walking away when the other person or persons is/are clearly bored of me. Maybe I should have some kind of internal timer or even set a real, physical timer on my phone that will go off and say “Oh, pasta’s done! Gotta go!” so I seem cool (because carbs=cool) but instead I just stand there and wait it out until they leave. Sorry, pal. You’re gonna have to be the one to feel awkward because I will just stew here. Am I alone in this? I am the person who will stay last at the party because there is still some conversation happening and I am having an okay time. It doesn’t even really have to be a good time. Just an okay time. Maybe I just don’t want to be alone?
It’s helpful to me when, er, Randy is around because he is very introverted and will be like “Okay, should we go now?” Sometimes I like this, sometimes I don’t. Sometimes I do want to stay because I am having a nice time, but more often than that I am just staying because I don’t have a real thing I have to go do.
I think the perfect number of people for a gathering/lunch/dinner/drinks/coffee is three (six if you are talking about an actual party) because then no one has to dominate the conversation and there doesn’t have to be a phenomenal chemistry between any two individuals; as long as all three can keep the ball up in the air, no one gets tired. Four is hard because if there are two groups of two and a conversation starts happening next to me, you better believe I am no longer paying attention to the conversation I am in. More on that later.
Two is really hard for me. That’s what this blog will be about, mostly. One on one conversation. Whew boy. Watch out. Are we even programmed for that, Biologically?
So this is all to say that I think things went okay. I made an appearance. I met some people. I found out that if I get a dog that is registered as a therapy animal, the building cannot say no. And if they don’t know what breed the dog is (i.e. just lie), you can have any kind of dog you want even though the building doesn’t allow Pitbulls or German Shepherds. That doesn’t matter too much because I just want an Australian Cattle Dog anyway (please don’t herd my cats, adorable little cattle dog). FANCY THAT. So I’m getting a dog.
But I should probably get a job first — because Kibble and stuff.