Two years ago I met a man who would just not shut up. I don’t know how I can thank him for constantly annoying me with verbal (and literal) pokes and prods to get any kind of reaction from me. I have no idea how he can just walk up to someone and just start talking. He is constantly on the go and always has another angle to work off of. This is the dude who took me on my first real night drinking at a club. He dragged me to a techno concert and found tickets to the latest Weird Al concert in my area. Let me tell you how I met this guy, about some of our adventures and why I am still friends with him despite the fact that he is almost my complete opposite in temperament. Well maybe because of that fact.
Two years ago I lead a soldering team of 2 other people. This team consisted of and anime/sci-fi fan, a guy who is half Dude-Bro half Geek (it exists, I’ve seen it), and myself as the super quiet, sit down and read a book type. Our shop needed more people so they started hiring several people. When we suddenly needed more solderers this guy was transferred to my department. Well, he had more experience soldering that I did so he decided in what I later learned was his normal fashion that he was the “Best Ever” and proceeded to teach us about soldering. Turned out he was pretty good and we all learned a great deal from him. I had no problem taking his lead and he had no problem taking the lead.
Lunches left us all to ourselves. The others talked and I just read my book all the time. This apparently didn’t sit well with this guy so he tried to engage me in conversation. In my typical response I answered his questions, gave my opinions but I never really was part of the conversation. The more he would do this, the more I would start to participate on my own. I didn’t realize what had happened until the day we all decided to watch anime at lunch. I was no longer taking my book out but talking to the others. I didn’t notice until I realized that it was taking me longer and longer to get though a book.
I have now joined groups on Meetup.com and started to regularly attend events on my own. My personal preference is sitting in a coffee shop with a group of people, some new, some regulars, and talking about whatever comes up. I am now more comfortable when talking to other people and can hold a conversation fairly well. I am even now starting to host my own meetups for a group that caters to introverts exclusively. I think I am well on my way to being the kind of person I want to be and that feels good.
I am glad I met this friend of mine. He is definitely one that I want to keep around.