DISCLAIMER: This blog will tell you things about me you may not want to know. Stop now. You have been warned.
Most people think I am an extrovert. They believe that because no matter where I go I always seem to be the center of attention. I don’t like being the center of attention and often don’t go out because I end up the center of attention. I am in actuality an introvert. But there is a catch and I believe it affects millions of introverts throughout the world.
An introvert shuns people. They are often times most happy when alone doing their own thing; whatever that may be. I am most happy when I am alone working in my shop building something, at my computer writing something, or in a car either alone or with my wife, driving to something. The problem arises when I must, in my day job or hobbies, deal with large crowds of people.
I am a librarian. I teach classes of students on how to conduct research. I am also a merchant in the Society for Creative Anachronism and spend weekends and sometimes weeks with very large amounts of people. Case in point last month I was at an event with 4,000 others. I didn’t see them all at once but I knew they were there.
When I am in these situations the only way to be alone is to be the center of attention. I know that sounds silly but it’s true. As the center of attention there is you and then there are all the other people. It’s the same as being alone in a corner but more vocal. You are alone, albeit surrounded. Where it is painful being one of the crowd it is less painful being the only one, even if the crowd is staring at you.
So when someone says something and becomes the life of the party and then disappears as soon as that moment is over don’t think of them as rude or ungrateful. Once we are no longer alone it’s time to leave. There is nothing wrong with us. We just like our own company better than most crowds.