Searching for the Moon

Shannon Clark's rambles and conversations on food, geeks, San Francisco and occasionally economics

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Posted by shannonclark on April 4, 2003

Please give me feedback

or “who’se reading this stuff anyway…”?

Okay, I have a question for anyone reading this, could you give me some feedback on what I’m doing here?

Am I to random? (in when I post, in what I post?)

Do you even finish my frequent long rambles?

I ask because though I think I am getting some people looking here, at least it seems that way (perhaps 10 people a day, not sure really), I only very infrequently get any comment or feedback about what I have put here – but any and all is always very very welcome. (yes, that is a hint)

In the past month plus, I have a vaguest feeling that some number of my friends are not talking to me – but I’m not really sure. For one, it feels like a lot of people I have emailed in the past few months who previously have been very good about replying and corresponding have suddenly stopped replying to my emails.

In a few cases phone calls as well have gone unreturned.

In other cases, events that I think I would have previously been invited to have occurred without an invite to me – though again, I do not quite know why.

Here is a simple blunt statement to my friends (and I guess to strangers as well) – I have almost ZERO concept of how I appear/come across to others, really – I have a very poor sense of how I am percieved.

I do have a fairly good sense of how people whom I talk with view me – that I mostly “get”, and even when we may disagree on a particular point, I get the general sense that people are willing to engage me in conversation and discussion – i.e. that I am listening, and that we have conversations and discussions – not some form of argument etc (recently I have been attending political discussions on Thursday evenings each week – lots of fun – in part because there is a real diversity of opinions and viewpoints, which is somewhat unusual and I think very cool.

I also know that generally when I am talking to people about business or technical matters, I am generally respected and listened to, I frequently do in fact know a fair amount about a given subject, and people respect that. So in business and professional matters I am fairly comfortable. In other areas like philosophy and politics, I have generally thought about them a great deal, though probably not as much as many, and certainly my views are non-mainstream in most cases.

However, in personal matters my sense of how I come across is mostly non-existant.

Last night I had a conversation with a woman who works for a local non-profit. I had sat down with her and her boss a few months back and showed them some cool and useful technologies on the Internet, last night she called me with a question about her DSL and webhosting etc. So we had a nice conversation, but that’s not the point. The point is that she commented that I seemed the type to make someone a “tech widow” – i.e. someone who does nothing else but technology.

In some respects she is not far from the truth – I do think about and read about technology a lot, though I probably spend as much (or more) time reading and thinking about business and networks (of people not wires) as I do technology persay. However, I do have other interests – I like movies, I like science fiction (and fantasy), I write, I used to be a photographer (would like to be again but do not have the money for it at the moment), I like art, I enjoy politics, philosophy, games (mostly strategy, not of chance, luck or trivia). I love food (perhaps slightly too much at times).

But in looking over my list though many of the items I enjoy can involve other people, for me at least most of them do not. I spend a really remarkable amount of my time “alone” – at least in my head, and usually physically as well.

I know that there are entire slices of life and living that I am missing and have been for so long that in most cases I do not “miss” them because I have never had them. I envy those of my friends for whom such things come easily and naturally.

So, in short, as my friends (or at least a kindly stranger) what feedback can you give me? Have I (do I) do something that causes people to ignore me and/or to avoid me?

I think there is something about the style in which I sometimes (usually I suspect) write online that causes at least some to react negatively – for example, on an online personal site (nerve.com if you care) where I have posted an ad and do from time to time try to reply to ads, I have basically over the past year gotten next to zero responses to any of my ads, and almost no response to any of my replies to someone else’s ad.

Anyway, that is probably a matter for yet another day.

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