Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Sphincter Clenching Fear

So you may have already heard that I'm Speaking at BlogHer 08 !!

As over-the-moon excited as I am about going, I'm filled almost equally with ever-mounting anxiety.
I don't think a day has gone by when I haven't thought What the hell have I gotten myself into?

It will be fine. I know it will. I'm SURE of it.

But see, the panel on which I'm sitting is about introversion, blogging, and blogher.
There's a reason that I'm on that panel.

I'm shy.

I've TOLD you that before. Whenever I do one of those "Tell Me X Things About Yourself" memes, I tell you I'm shy. You never believe me.
But it's the solid truth.
Meeting new people?? UH UH. Not good.
I can do it - I was a hotel GM and I had to do grand openings and sales blitzes and introduce myself and be chatty and personable and OH EM GEE I CAN'T HANDLE IT...but I do - although it's a struggle.

The most frightening thing about BlogHer, I think, is going to be meeting you guys.
I KNOW, I know, that's what I WANT to do.
But see, here's the thing: it's not often that you meet new people who ALREADY KNOW YOUR INSIDES.

You people already know most of my deepest fears, my failings and failures, my most embarrassing moments, my meanest thoughts, my worst actions.
And have offered your opinions on them.
How could I possibly expect you to take me seriously, in the flesh?
You will all know FAR more about me than 3 days acquaintance would normally allow.

How am I supposed to look you in the face when you know how angry and resentful I've been? When I've confessed that I made a lesbian joke at my great-grandma's funeral?

How can I meet your eyes when I have told you I BURNT OUT THE MOTOR IN MY VIBRATOR?

I feel a little sick just now. Woozy, even.

I mean, it's not like meeting someone in person at like...a three day retreat and walking up and saying "Hi. I'm a single mom and my son's really, really disabled and sometimes I hate my life and sometimes I think other people should really not complain about all the wonderful things they have and sometimes I can't imagine making it through the day, let alone the next week, and sometimes I say things and people laugh and that's good, especially when I wasn't even trying to be funny and OH YEAH, I'm really poor and make lousy money but I love my job, and I worry about things all the time and I worry about people all the time and I'm fat and self-conscious and I really love to voice my opinions but only online where I don't have to see people and I do this radio show which is fun but again, I don't have to see anyone and my car is a piece of shit and......."

You guys already know that and SO.MUCH.MORE.

In here, buried in the internets, I can say just what I want, whenever I want, with few repercussions. The worst that could possibly happen is that someone could unfollow me on twitter, or UNblogroll me, or I could get the occasional troll or heated email.
Plus also? Here, if I tell a joke and it falls flat I don't have to see you trying not to roll your eyes. If I say something without thinking (OH DEAR GOD EVERY DAY OF MY LIFE), I don't have to watch your nose crinkle in distaste or a sneer curl the corner of your mouth. I don't have to read your body language to see that I may have crossed a line or gone too far or made you uncomfortable.

So yeah, I'm pretty sure that I'm not going to be able to unclench until I'm safely back home again...or unless you guys can get me really, really drunk.
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