Friday, June 10, 2011

Defensive Shyness

If you know me-(and I bet you do since you are reading this and I'm not like some insanely cool hip blogger about town... yet) then you know that I'm kinda the opposite of shy.

But that's fake! Fake I tell you, 'cause in actuality I'm super shy but can do a bang up job trying to pretend that I'm not. Here are three tricks I've learned to hide my shyness:

1. Keep an open happy face- so when non shy people spot me they get fooled that I am from their tribe- so they come to converse. This unfortunately has a backlash known as the Crazy Quadrant. Crazies spot happy faces and are attracted to them like moths to a flaming death. Due to my happy open face, crazies tend to think that I'm the bees knees. Usually, I can escape a crazy, by immediately shutting down my face into a stone cold angry woman- but sometimes I get fooled into a 45 minute conversation about Fern Emotions with someone who seemed normal. Sigh...

2. I try to think of things to continue a conversation. People might mistake this as actual conversation, but if I don't know you... I'm basically just trying to stay one step ahead of you.

3. I nod and say 'yes' a lot- people like it when you agree with them. Unless it's nazi propaganda or some other wackness- but I usually don't have to deal with racist folks- me being black tends to weed them from the bunch.

Those are my three tips... they work as long as I don't say anything weird, and as a result people tend to place me in the extrovert box.

The only time my shyness completely overwhelms me is at mixers, specifically work mixers. I have no idea why, but I can't seem to work up enough nerve to march up to some and be like, "hey what's up, yo!"

Maybe because my money is on the line. Hmmmm.

Anywho- yesterday I was at one... with wine. The booze factor always ups the shy, because, I don't want to get drunk and booze = fancy. So, as I gripped my wine glass I watched the others mingle. As they slowly revolved around each other- sniffing and feeling each other out as we humans do, I found myself slowly drifting to the cheese table smiling along the way. I dropped the knife and smiled as people eyed me. I tried standing by a clump of people- just outside of the circle- smiling and listening... no room to jump in. So I smiled and slowed melted my way back to a table. Where I stood, gobbled cheese, and guzzled wine. Smiling all the time as the service staff flashed nervous glances in my direction. Eventually, I busted my way into a couple conversations, but man did I hate that initial feel of being a weirdo as I stood there nervously watching people getting to know each other.

Later that night over dinner, my boyfriend casually mentioned an article detailing certain personality traits which helped survival in olden times.



"yea... cause if you look in the eyes of a wolf you might get attacked."

I smiled to myself this time, because I felt a little bit less like a weirdo.

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