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life and other such oddities

It's been seven months since my last public entry, and six since the last locked entry. It's like I've fallen off the edge of the earth - or at least into the black hole known as Facebook.

I still prefer to put anything of substance here, because the archiving is far superior. Facebook is better for the day-to-day ephemera, though, and between that and the extended potential audience, it's too easy to forget to come back here at all. Mostly, though, it's all about time. I just can't seem to set aside the time to write more than a sentence or two most days. I know that it's a positive thing to be so busy having a life that I don't have time to write about it, but it still makes me feel a little like I've lost a piece of myself.

So where have I been, anyway?

Work's been insanely busy for so long that I'm having trouble remembering what it used to be like when I had time to breathe. It was almost a relief when little Bryan left for grad school in mid-August. True, I don't have his help any more, but I also don't have to keep him busy and explain things all the time. Toni's trying to step up and help out more with the rest of the practice since the real estate has been so dead.

Close to half my weekends are spent in PA for gaming. I'm enjoying sitting on the players' side again. The extended hiatus really helped me shake off the not-fun experiences that made me stop a few years back. I'm trying to make a character with no weapon skills whatsoever be useful and relevant - and, not incidentally, able to survive. So far, so good.

I helped Amy and Craig with their move. I've been to see Melanie and family... three times? with another visit in a couple of weeks. This past weekend, of course, was Thanksgiving, so I was up home with the family, and spent most of Saturday with Bridget and her family.

The weekend before Thanksgiving, I did something new and different. After years of saying I should go to a SF con, I finally did. Philcon, the Philadelphia area SF convention, was held in a hotel in Cherry Hill, NJ, and this year I managed to work up the nerve to go. All by myself.

The stated primary goal, of meeting single men who had some chance of compatibility, was a total failure. Apparently people under fifty simply don't attend the panels, or at least not the ones that interested me. I could have met quite a few men over seventy. Perhaps "correct locations for your generation" was one of the topics of the panel for first-time attendees, which I missed. It was scheduled at the same time as Law in the Future, which I was not going to miss for anything.

However, it probably wouldn't have mattered even if I'd been surrounded by men between thirty and forty-five. I went through the entire con speaking only to people in the dealers room, and to one woman who didn't give me much of a choice but to chat. Apparently I still haven't managed to get over being terrified to talk to strangers when I'm in unfamiliar surroundings. Next time I'm bringing Bryan. He's a natural icebreaker.

There will, definitely, be a next time. Despite my social inadequacies, I had a marvelous time. I attended quite a few interesting and educational panels. I bought half a dozen books, including the just-published sequel to my favorite book of all time. I finally experienced the Eye of Argon, which I've been hearing about for years. I people-watched for hours. I'll be back next year, for sure. I'm also looking into whether I can get to the other cons within driving distance. If I do it often enough, even by myself, sooner or later I'll have to get used to it and start opening my mouth.

In other news, I need a new picture of myself. My default userpic is what, five years old? Six? Time to try again.

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Comments

( 17 comments — Leave a comment )
hughcasey
Dec. 1st, 2009 11:35 am (UTC)
Hi there! I'll assume you found me through Philcon, where I was a panelist. Mind if I ask what panel(s) you saw me on?

I took the liberty of looking over your LJ, and you seem like pretty cool people. Therefore, I'm going to do something I don't do that much anymore... I'm going to friend you back, even though I don't THINK I know you IRL (if I do, then dear GODS, correct me! I've got a mind like a steel sieve!).

Thanks for the add! :-)
tristam
Dec. 1st, 2009 12:50 pm (UTC)
Hugh, this is Stephanie. She is a friend of mine from college and she is indeed pretty cool people. Steph, Hugh is delightfully geeky and prolific about diverse fandom topics. I love it when friends find each other.

collacentaur
Dec. 1st, 2009 01:29 pm (UTC)
No, if you've met me before, then I forgot it too, which seems unlikely.

I saw you on the flirting-and-dating panel.
swimpaddlz
Dec. 2nd, 2009 12:31 am (UTC)
there was a flirting and dating panel??

i have the same age group problem on my hikes. my closest hiking friends are in their mid-60s. but they're way cool so i'll keep them. okay,i have hiking friends my age who are trying to date each other too, but that doesn't help me. ;-) but hey, it's fun anyway so just keep doing it, right??
collacentaur
Dec. 2nd, 2009 02:19 am (UTC)
There were panels on all sorts of things. The flirting-and-dating was followed by one on kink in fandom, for example. And it could be more aptly described as "how not to scare off the opposite sex" - advice like attention to personal hygiene, and other such things that geeky-types are prone to forget. Although, I must say, the only smelly person I encountered that weekend was there with his wife. Yay for eliminating sterotypes, one step at a time.

I daresay that if I'd followed more of the social sorts of topics, I would have been more likely to, er, encounter my target audience, shall we say? But I was mostly going to more academic panels.
swimpaddlz
Dec. 2nd, 2009 02:22 am (UTC)
yah, but you like academic stuff and are probably inclined to find someone with like interests. so it makes sense, even if it wasn't successful this time. i keep holding to the "if i keep doing what i like, i'll have fun and eventually I'll cross paths with the right guy who also does what i like!" theory...maybe it'll work for one of us eventually. ;-)
collacentaur
Dec. 2nd, 2009 02:46 am (UTC)
Mm. I'm trying to work the "try new things that I ought to like and hope to bump into someone who will bring me out of my shell" approach instead.
swimpaddlz
Dec. 2nd, 2009 02:48 am (UTC)
well...when i started the hiking, that kinda was what i was doing...now it's morphed into the doing what i like...i'm still working on the adding new stuff to that...keep running out of energy...
collacentaur
Dec. 2nd, 2009 02:54 am (UTC)
This energy of which you speak, where does one find it? Does it taste blue?
swimpaddlz
Dec. 2nd, 2009 02:56 am (UTC)
on a hike, it tastes like margarita. the energy chews don't seem to work the same way in the rest of life. ;-)
collacentaur
Dec. 6th, 2009 11:11 pm (UTC)
So, I don't know if you changed your mind about adding me, or just forgot, but either way, I wanted to thank you for the thought. I consider it to be quite a compliment that you even considered it.
hughcasey
Dec. 6th, 2009 11:13 pm (UTC)
That would be a "just forgot". Oops.

Consider yourself friended. :-)
tristam
Dec. 1st, 2009 12:52 pm (UTC)
So you were in my home town for Philcon eh? I am envious on so many levels. If I ever make it back east, I'll happily pal around with you at the next con you go too.
collacentaur
Dec. 1st, 2009 01:30 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I was thinking of you while I was there.
soupkills
Dec. 1st, 2009 09:44 pm (UTC)
If you decide to hit dragoncon or worldcon next year, you might want to get in touch with Jocelyn, who went to both last year. :)
(Deleted comment)
collacentaur
Dec. 4th, 2009 04:58 pm (UTC)
As per usual - we get into combat when we don't have the fighter, too.
( 17 comments — Leave a comment )