I think it’s important to make this particular distinction because a lot of people are obviously very confused about me in general! So I’ll try to set the record straight!
For those of you who do not know me, I am extremely shy (Okay, not ultra-terribly-masterfully whereby I won’t leave the house) but I’m pretty damn shy! Put me in a setting where I don’t know a single person, and I’ll be that guy off in the corner all alone :( [That is an accurate representation…]
So the first thing you’re going to say is.. “Bus Tour? TechEd?! Dancing on Stage at Jam Sessions? I totally saw you with a tambourine jamming to Joey Snow! …Aren’t you a user group leader?! You totally gave me a voucher, and my friend and interrogated me if I was an IT Pro or Developer! Stop Yelling USB Drive sizes and throwing them to me?!”
Okay, I’m not sure there were people who didn’t want the random swag (I tell you, dancing and handing out vouchers mid-strut is pretty cool ;))
But it bears sharing, that I like a number of people… are contextually shy. Or respectively… Contextually NOT shy (Tech!shy?) :) Yes, it is true. If I don’t know anyone in a ‘crowded bar’ or something in some type of social setting I am –screwed!- hands down! But apply an ‘assumption’ to the context “There is a somewhat chance or probability… that they might ALSO be involved in technology?!” (It helps if you’re at a Technical Conference, or conference after party) and then all bets are off!
I like many people suffer from a condition known as “I don’t want to bother you on the off chance that we share absolutely nothing in common” The fact that every single person in the world uses technology in one shape or form is not enough to override this feature, because just because you’re a ‘consumer’, does not mean you are a ‘user’ or beyond. So, wearing a geek shirt usually raises the bar “ooh, potential geek! lets engage them!”
For the 2000+ or so people I met and talked to this past week, don’t go thinking I’m all mr sociable (the action, not the cracker) because of what you saw me do, infact you can do it yourself, just commit to being ‘socially acceptable in mutually underlying company’ = win? :)
So, if it’s not a technical conference or technical event I likely won’t approach you (Great, right? ;)) so feel free to approach me, I’m very approachable albeit often oblivious :) Who knows if I’ll break the Tech!shy to reach into other contexts, if that happens, oh my! :)
Oh, and I had an absolutely amazing time meeting each and every one of you! Especially you guys: Detroit, Ottawa, Tampa and DC – You guys were great :)