xurnami: (darash)
Recently, I've been working on trying to figure out how to expand my social circle. Due to events of the last year, my social circle has collapsed significantly. I reacted to certain badness by becoming more insular and removing myself from a number of spaces that I used to inhabit.

I have a good sized social circle now, even if I am still experiencing some social anxiety about actually getting together with them. I would like to get to know more people but there are a couple of difficulties I'm experiencing about the directions I am trying to head out in.

I spend a large portion of my time and energy working at being a better programmer. A large amount of the news and other things that I consume are in some way related to this particular goal. I get off my job programming to proceed to do additional programming off the clock for my own projects.

I would very much enjoy being able to spend more time talking and working with people with interests along these lines. However, a vast majority of the spaces for discussing these topics are well known cesspools where people are harassed for being out of line of the "normal" cis white male. While I can present as such, it is getting increasingly uncomfortable for me to do so. Furry conventions have had codes of conduct as long as I can remember, there are still tech conferences which are arguing if they should have them or not. This makes me extremely uncomfortable about attending many of these events. There also appears to be an extinction burst going on in the community around these behaviors which is not the best to be involved in either.

If people know if spaces where this is less of a problem, I would be quite interested to learn about them. Virtual or real space would both be great for me.

Beyond that group, the other group I'd like to get more involved in involves content creators of different strokes, especially among transformation content. I am feeling awkward around approaching these people into more social interactions as I've been mostly in the position of commissioner to content creator. The content I create is most often not along the lines of tech which is awkward to even bring up, I feel, among these other content creation groups.

I have some plans over the next week to build a website for storing my commissions along with some microfiction to go along with them to show some other forms of creativity. I have some skill at fiction writing but it is not a skill which I have spent as much time working on. I am very appreciative of these artists who have practiced thier art and understand the amount of time and energy they have to put in to become good at these things. This is why I spend quite a bit of money commissioning these people to create art. However, I have no clue how to move beyond being a large pocketbook either.

If anyone has done such things and has any advice, I'd be very interested to hear about that.
xurnami: (darash)
While this post is mostly directed at those local to me, there are bits at here for those I know online too.

I would like to talk or visit with many more of you much more often than I am. However, I have some social anxiety issues about being a bother to people. I don't know what mediums people feel are interruptive or they are most comfortable communicating with me over. I also have difficulty breaching the topic of inviting myself into other spaces in reality or virtually.

Here is a summary of my current schedule for people to work from:

Monday through Friday I am at my job. I work from home so my commute is zero time. I usually start around 9 am PST and am at work for 8 hours after. This means I am off work between 5pm and 6pm PST. On Mondays, I have a therapy appointment in the evening and am usually not up for socializing afterwards. Every other day of the week I am usually open for socializing. Due to my schedule, I usually eat immediately after work so if you want to do food, let me know before the end of my work day so I can take that into account and not do that.

For those not local to me, I am completely open to be interrupted during my work day. I might have a remote meeting or something which I have to focus on every so often but these are few and far between. I'll try my best to let you know before I have them and not leave you hanging.

I currently have no regular weekend plans so most weekends I am completely free from whenever I get up to when I get to sleep. I keep a schedule fairly close to my weekday schedule during the weekend where I get up and can start chatting around 9 am PST to make plans.

For locals, I live very close to Wayward Coffee. I would love to meet there for chatting, games, or working on projects. I can bring pretty much any game from my collection over as it is so close. I am also able to invite people back to my place now as I am now mostly moved in. I have to check with my roommate (Verdauga) but it can definitely be done.

If people want to share with me thier availablity schedules so I can figure out who I can bother safely when I would like to socialize, that would be great. I will be reaching out to some people directly to ask for that information myself. If you want a more private way to communicate this to me, there should be plenty of options on my profile page here.
xurnami: (darash)
I've been thinking a bit about the different ways I like to communicate with people. This is somewhat related to the "How to invite me out" post.

When it comes to communication, my comfort level varies depending upon the medium and how many people are involved. Quite a large amount of this comes from upbringing and I recognize that my interaction patterns are not all that great in a number of situations. Part me me writing this down is recognizing those patterns so that people can work with me while I work on fixing those patterns myself.

Really long post follows )
xurnami: (darash)
This is an attempt to explain how get my attention to get me out of my apartment and visit with you. I am not great at talking about myself so if you have questions, please leave comments.

I am very much a loner but when I do get out of the house I am interested in sharing good food and then following that up with some sort of intellectually stimulating exercise. A good example of something I enjoy doing is going from a meal with lots of great discussion to sitting around a table and playing a designer board game. I'd prefer not too many people involved. About the number of people for your average board game (two to seven) is just about perfect. If you want me to bring a board game, I have plenty and can bring one I'm interested in. I have some that still haven't even been played yet. If you are interested in Magic: the Gathering, I have a variety of different decks I can bring if you give me an idea of your skill level.

I also have tons of side projects that I work on when I have a chance, so inviting me to be "alone together" in a public space is also a great way to get together with me. I can head to any number of different coffee shops, take a table, and enjoy some refreshing or stimulating beverages, while we each work on something interesting to us. Small amounts of accountability that I am working on something and not just fiddling with some new game is also appreciated and can be reciprocated if desired.

I am very bad at inviting myself. I do not wish to be a bother to people and so if you'd like to see me around, sending very explicit invitations to do one of the above things is extremely helpful to doing that.

I love learning new things about just about any topic too. If you are learning or doing absolutely anything interesting, I most likely want to hear about it. I'll have lots of questions and I just want to absorb new information from whatever you are up to. Just please, make sure that you are giving me a chance to follow along. I sometimes feel like I am so far behind on certain things and everyone else is talking about these things at a level that I'm not at and that I would interrupt the flow to bring it back to my level. I have spent a ten thousand hour chunk of my time focused on one particular field (computer programming) and while that has led me to some success, most of the people in the field are people I don't want to really interact with. If you are interested in this particular topic, I am more than interested in talking your ear off about it. Always feel free to tell me to stop too.

This also applies to online contact. If there a contact medium that you prefer for chatting, please tell me. I am more than willing to set things up to chat over it. I have some very idiosyncratic mechanisms for setting up chat so sometimes I just have forgotten to set it up recently if you have me on some medium and never see me around. I am always open to having people contact me at any time. My away message should be set correctly most of the time if I am not available. If I am set available, I am completely open to be contacted.

September 2015

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