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Look! More fluff!

Ummmmmumhummmhumhummmm...  Yeah.

I'm still at home, since 5am roads and freezing rain didn't really appeal (and in all honesty, I watched the weather report at 11pm last night, and called in and left a message for my boss not to expect me today).  It's pretty outside, in that ice-covers-everything-in-silver kind of way, and since I've filled both suet feeders and put out a ton of hulled sunflower seed, there are masses of birds braving the freezing mist and snorking down on my balcony.  Pretty, they are - espeially the Juncos, who look like they've been dipped head-first into a gallon of black paint.

I don't know, though... I got nothin' witty in my brainmeats.

I can't even think of 25 things about me for that meme that's slowly making the rounds.  I can think of seven, tops.  Anyway, I'm usually pretty open about most of my life here, and I'm keeping private the things you don't know, so the list would have nothing new on it.

My blogs/journals/diaries have been rather useful over the years for getting out the inner workings of my mind and emotions so that people can see that I'm not the ice princess I appear to be (particularly to people who decided I was awful without even knowing me, and told other people that they needed to hate me too), I'm just reserved, as is typical for English people.  Once you get to know me, you realize that far from being cold and judgemental, I'm passionate about things both good and bad, and I have a saviour complex, so I'm much more likely to smack the assholes than join them.

I've had some pretty tough experiences caused by people heaping their insecurities and assumptions on me, so I use my journal whenever I can to get the real me out there - the one that loves teaching, likes people in general, and doesn't hate anyone (but, admittedly, doesn't trust some people as far as I can throw them).  For some reason, people find me terribly intimidating, but my journal seems to diffuse some of that, so I've been pretty open about my personal and SCA experiences (while trying to avoid mentioning specific names and situations). 

I simply want people to know that I have emotions, I can be terribly hurt... and that I am slightly deaf in crowds, so you have to get in front of me and wave vigorously to get my attention sometimes, so please dont assume I'm ignoring you or are angry with you.  That, and you can come up and say hi - if I'm having a really private conversation, I usually try and have it in a private space.  If I'm just chatting in a big hall, even if I look busy, I don't mind interruptions - I'm usually just nattering away with someone.

I really don't know what to do with people who think I really am the attack laurel - once people get an idea in their head, it's terriby hard to change.  Of course, I wish they didn't hate me based on an assumption that's completely untrue, but there's not really much I can do about it.  Heck, I have people in this kingdom who tell the most ridiculous lies about me to bolster their self-esteem - I sometimes let it get to me, but these days, I mostly just sigh and let it go.  I can control myself, but I cannot control others.  It's just frustrating when they scare away people who would actually like me from even saying hello (I have a friend who was afraid to talk to me for ages because someone told her I was a complete bitch).  That's frustrating, because even though I'm pretty introverted (no, really.  Stop laughing, dammit!), I really like talking to people, especially about making stuff.

It's been actually quite hard to reach even this level of acceptance about people who hate me for whatever reason - I grew up with the idea that unless everyone liked me, I was doing something terribly wrong.  If someone hated me, then it was my fault, the reasoning went, and that unfortunately screwed me up for quite a while.  I eventually came to grips with the idea (thanks to Bob) that I don't have to be liked by everyone - I don't like everyone, so why should anyone else be any different?  Sometimes it's chemistry, sometimes it's insecurity, sometimes it's competition, or the need to devalue other people to make oneself look better.  But mostly, it's not my fault.  And their approval is not neccessary to my sense of well-being (which has been a good damn thing at certain points in my life).  I've shed a lot of tears, and I still revisit the issues to analyze them further using new information, but for the most part, I am at peace with it. 

Um, yeah.  See what happens when I don't have a post planned?  I'm going to put away my laundry now.


( 41 brains — Leave a chunk of brain! )
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Jan. 28th, 2009 04:36 pm (UTC)
I don't know about anyone else, but I find you intimidating because you are (or at least seem) so very competent at everything you do. I'm sure there's something you do badly--cook? Snore?--but nothing comes to mind. :-)
Jan. 28th, 2009 05:06 pm (UTC)
I'm terribly bad at housekeeping - does that count? :) Really, I'm not all-knowing, I just have a lot of experience, and I'm not afraid to try new things and get them wrong. Because I have a solid foundation of paying attention to what I do, I have a good base upon which to build new skills. There are some things I just hate doing, though, and I'm always impressed by people who can do those things well (make shifts, and such).
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Jan. 28th, 2009 04:39 pm (UTC)
One of these days we are going to sit down and talk. And we are going to discover that there was in the 50s through the 60s a covert cloning operation. :>
Jan. 28th, 2009 06:11 pm (UTC)
Well... was your father perchance in England during April of 1969? *grin*
Jan. 28th, 2009 04:44 pm (UTC)
I have to tell you, the most fun I have ever had judging A&S was when I did it on a team with you.
Jan. 28th, 2009 05:06 pm (UTC)
Awww, thanks! I enjoyed it, too. ...though I have a tendency to talk too much. :)
Jan. 28th, 2009 04:44 pm (UTC)
It's the hug thing. People are intimidated by folks who don't want to be touched by everyone and their brother. Being a selective hugger myself, I totally understand! Heck, I got the patented Eldred "Look of Disapproval" Sunday when I nearly managed to scoot away without the requisite hugs from everyone! And I love Eldred! I'm just a little more vigilant during germ season...

Our bird feeder has been attracting flocks of doves, much to the delight of the resident hawk, who considered it a personal buffet and proceeded to catch and eat his dinner right in front of the kitchen window last week. My daughter was a little horrified and suggested while she understood the whole "chain of life" thing, he could be nice enough to take his meal elsewhere to eat it! LOL!
Jan. 28th, 2009 06:59 pm (UTC)
Hah, that's funny! We have a hawk, too, though he mostly concentrates on the squirrels (when the crows aren't mobbing him).

I am definitely not comfortable with hugs from people I don't know - in part because I have to trust people before I let them in my personal space (and some people earn that trust faster - it's an intuition thing), and partly because I kow that not everyone else likes hugs, and I don't want to impose.

I also have this constant voice in my head that tells me I might be interrupting or bothering people by speaking, so in gatherings of people I don't know, I don't say much. This is not the same as being the resident "fountain of knowledge" for people - when I am teaching, I'm very outgoing. :)
(no subject) - lorihalia - Jan. 28th, 2009 07:15 pm (UTC) - Expand
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Jan. 28th, 2009 05:00 pm (UTC)
Oh... what I wouldn't give for the ability to call in to work at this point... (I did navigate the three inches of ice at 5 am here in Arkansas).
Actually, at this point I think I would be very happy to have power in my home, considering they're saying it will probably be Friday before it's back on...
Jan. 28th, 2009 05:20 pm (UTC)
See, now, if I ran into you at an event, I'd pro'lly be afraid to talk to you because I'd squee like a 12-year-old fangirl at a Hannah Montana concert.

I've even started a petticoat using the method you described...
Jan. 28th, 2009 05:52 pm (UTC)

But it would have to be an inter-kingdom event, and probably my Dona would be there, and I couldn't get withing a hundred feet of The Attack Laurel before my Dona would grab my arm and say, "You met Isabelle at that Gulf War, remember? Let's go talk to her."

Jan. 28th, 2009 05:30 pm (UTC)
Ha! I'm not afeard of you. Your evol powers of intimidashun do not work on me! :-P

Jan. 29th, 2009 02:25 am (UTC)
Pssst... can I hide behind you?

(just kidding you two.)
Jan. 28th, 2009 05:34 pm (UTC)
I greatly enjoy your journal and would be honored to meet you in person. After getting to know you here I have come to understand that your humor is quite unique and makes me laugh a lot. Your willingness to do a task the correct way the first time around also makes me strive to be more like that; I started researching period handsewing techniques for garb after looking at your Attack Laurel website! Thank you for being such a wonderful person; I know I for one strive to be as authentic as you are. :o)
Just my 2 cents though.
Jan. 28th, 2009 05:47 pm (UTC)
I think a lot of us could write that last paragraph (well, we couldn't thank Bob though :)) and tend to think we are all alone out there. Your refreshing honesty helps remind us we are not and to keep plugging away.

Just adds to your awesomeness, and now I am sooo intimidated :) :) :).
Jan. 28th, 2009 05:48 pm (UTC)
People who don't know you have trouble believing that you (you personally and many reserved people in general) are shy/reserved because you seem very comfortable and outgoing with your friends. They see that you treat them differently and make the assumption that it is something against them personally (you mean the world doesn't revolve around me???) In developmental psychology, they describe it as 'slow to warm up' - the baby/child/person takes a bit of extra time to make sure that the new person isn't going to bite them before they're willing to make friends. Put a bunch of slow to warm up people in the same group (SCA?), and you can see some interesting games of emotional chicken where no one wants to be the first to stick their head out (oooh - bad pun - sorry...)
Jan. 28th, 2009 05:57 pm (UTC)
I was only intimidated at Pennsic the moment right before I spoke with you at the procession. I wasn't sure if you wanted to be bothered and I was nervous that I'd come off all "fangirl" on you.

You were faboo, you're party rocked and you remind me a lot of things about myself and some of my cohorts in our "authenticity enthusiasm."

I've unfortunately gotten the moniker "the scary laurel" and I try hard not to be...but I understand the intimidation factor but I always try and smile, think before I say something and follow the addage "if you can't say something nice, say nothing at all".

I think the biggest thing you do is lead by example. You show off all of your tricks, you show what you've learned, you pass on that knowledge freely and with enthusiasm..what else could anyone want?
Jan. 28th, 2009 06:05 pm (UTC)
I don't need everyone to like me. In fact, I keep a secret list of people who, if THEY liked me, I would worry that I had done something wrong.

On the other hand, it's one thing for someone to not like me and another thing for someone to start a smear campaign against me. That pisses me off. Fortunately, my worst offender moved out of kingdom and has never come back. Sometimes I get one of my friends to send a little rumor in her direction, just so I can imagine her stewing. Sometimes I am disturbed my this vengeful aspect of my own personality.

In my years working retail, I developed a bright and sparkly "I CARE about your needs" smile, and it's very handy in the SCA. Another useful skill is carrying on a long conversation without telling the other person anything personal about yourself, but doing it in such a way that they are sure they have bonded with you and you are their friend for life. I do this with people I don't trust (like people who have carried smear campaigns in the past and are likely to do so again).

Jan. 28th, 2009 06:39 pm (UTC)
*laughing* sometimes I wish more people were just a little big afraid or intimidated of me...

a looooong while ago I decided that when it came to stuff people heard about me that 1) the people who are my friends would know the truth; 2) the people that I didn't know but would want to would either ask me or someone close to me but ideally only if it concerned them; and 3) the people who just wanted to gossip and speculate weren't really people I wanted to know anyways...

it's not always easy to keep that in mind, especially when rumors get venomous... but I try.

I think you're fabulous. You are an inspiration and *mock gasps* a real live human people and everything! Whoda thunk!
Jan. 28th, 2009 07:07 pm (UTC)
Heh. Somehow, I know the feeling (except for the intraverted bit... and the English bit...).

When you first loomed onto my radar, I don't remember how I got here, but I went to Extreme Costuming and thought, "She's in Maryland where most of my reenacting peeps live. She's into 16th and 17th century English clothing. And she's mad crazy out of her mind. How the Hell do I not know this person?!?!"

And then I read The Attack Laurel Academy pages and nearly choked, I was laughing so hard. You, sweetie, are just the cat's pyjamas!
Jan. 28th, 2009 07:56 pm (UTC)
I was slightly afraid, but I made it a point to talk to you anyway at Pennsic (and probably scared you a little bit with my exuberance). I loved the party and I hope you do it again next year. I am deeply inspired by your sewing and wished I lived closer. I'll just have to admire you from afar. :D
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