Books

Introspection

Most of the people I’d like to follow online are either dead or fictional.  What does that say about me?

I’m not sure, but I do know that I’m much happier inside my own head than out in the real world.  It’s scary out there.  At first I had no choice but to inhabit a fictional world – my formative years were spent in hospital and later, as an only child living in a block of flats, I had few opportunities to meet people of my own age.  When I started school everyone else seemed bigger and louder and scarier than me and I never quite connected with the majority.  However, as an imaginative child I did have a talent for inventing game scenarios.  Often based on books or favourite tv progs they were mainly role-played adventures involving a good deal of running around and screeching – pastimes beloved of most children.  But still, I never quite fit.

This separateness used to be a source of great pain to me, especially in my early teens.  There was no understanding between me and the majority.  I could never comprehend how people could be so thoughtlessly cruel to each other.  Why were they allowed to behave that way – weren’t there laws to prevent such behaviour?  Eventually, I built up protective walls around myself – spiky barriers to protect my own gooey innards.  I retreated, almost entirely, into my own mind: learning, reading, listening to music and thinking…

Of course there were always one or two sympathetic souls around.  Handfuls of quiet, thoughtful, shy people.  People who listened rather than talked, who thought rather than reacted, who meant the things they said.

Over the years I’ve become comfortable with myself.  I have shrugged off the prevailing view that “different is bad”.  I believe that different is beautiful; interesting; inspiring.

I love the word Geek.  I embrace the term and use it proudly in relation to myself.  In the last decades we geeks have come, blinking, out of the darkness and are no longer ashamed.  Yes, I may have a borderline obsession with Victorian fiction or the works of Douglas Adams but that does not make me a bad person.  Okay, I can quote great swathes of dialogue from a diverse range of movies but I can’t help that – it just happens by osmosis.  Perhaps I’d rather watch a documentary on the ancient Minoans than an episode of X-factor – does that make me the odd one?  I don’t think so, not any more.

Most of the people I’d like to follow online are either dead or fictional. What does that say about me?

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