Sunday, June 21, 2009
"Don't meet people in real life that you only know from the Internet".
That's what I tell my kids to keep them safe.
So I broke the rules (sorta, kinda) this weekend and met up with some folks that I've known mostly by their Innertube personas for quite some time and, yet, I had never actually met in meatspace.
I'm glad I broke the rules.
It's tough to pinpoint when-and-how the idea was born for our modest Geek Meet, although I think a near-miss on Free Comic Book Day might have been a recent catalyst. However the whole thing started, it was Jim Dandy that corraled everyone for a few hours of coffee-talk and comic-browsing. In addition to Mr. Dandy and myself were adamkantor, London's own Alpha Geek, and his charming-yet-deadly better half, Vulcan Ninja. A final addition to the round table - described to me as a roller-babe with a thing for Daleks - was a no-show due to an unfortunate geographical mix-up not of her making.
Meeting new people, even when they're not total strangers, is a pretty stressful thing for me. I tend to overcompensate for my natural anxiety through varied techniques: talking too fast, talking too loud, losing sight of a story's ending, and often wondering in which jacket I might have left my memory. But after a few cleansing breaths before I exited the van (true!), I screwed my courage to the sticking place, bought a large coffee, and it was introductions all round.
I'll simply say that it was a really lovely few hours. A nicer group of people one could not find, and it was not long before the Geek stories, updates, news, and rumours were out there on the table with the coffee cups. I'd do it again in a heartbeat.
So many thanks, everyone. It was really great to finally meet you all - and to feel so at home. Let's do it again some time, eh?