People Confuse Me

There are some folks in the scene that I just don’t get.

I’m sure there are plenty of folks that don’t get me either but that’s not the focus of this entry. What is the focus are those people you see out and about at the club, at a party or online that just seem, I don’t know, “off”.

Sometimes it’s the guy drifting through the crowd like a piece of flotsam — now he’s here, now he’s there and always with a silly smile pasted on his face. What does this guy want? I can’t tell because he apparently does not speak. He just meanders wherever there is room to walk, leaving a trail of awkwardness in his wake. They never seem to play nor respond when people try to help so I really am not sure what can be done. I sometimes feel bad for people like this because I don’t know if they’re just painfully shy or a little slow in the head ever since they were kicked in the head by their Grandpappy’s mule when they were six. Whatever they are they make me feel both pity and a little skeeved out at the same time.

Then there are those folks who I see online that just seem to be either absorbed in themselves or their own fantasy world or both. People like this come in more than one variety. Some are obviously deranged on some level — you can see it in their eyes in the photos they put online of themselves. Scary, wild-eyed photos of them dressed in robes of their own design except you can’t quite get a handle on what they are going for. Are they wizards? Shamen? Vice Chancellors of the Fifth Golxan Invasion Fleet? Unknown. What makes me so disturbed about these folks are their writings which are often steeped in the drippings of their personal fantasy worlds. Often out of left field stuff: “In the future, all subs will have wheels on their feet”. It’s like you’re reading Popular Mechanics magazine except it’s the special Retarded Edition.

I would consider most of these odd folks “benign” if not for the hint of anger or bitterness that’s always just under the surface. Either they can’t understand why people don’t respond positively to them or they are painfully aware of the reason and hate it, wishing they were not that tiny bit too different.

Or they are simply sick of people like me mocking them in blog posts.

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8 Responses to “People Confuse Me”

  1. fortheapidamnit Says:

    Special Retarded Edition.

    Oh. My. God.

    I love you, for real…

  2. “…are they wizards, shamen, Vice chancellors of the fifth golxan invasion fleet….” etc. Dear Lord… wipes a tear from eye.. you DO give new meaning to the tired phrase ” LOL” Rad! For REAL!

    You know..here’s the thing..obviously everyone can (and will be) their own weird and wonderful selves..but they also cant fault people for not wanting to engage them due to their perhaps less than compatile eccentric tendencies. wow. was THAT diplomatic enough?

  3. You know, in my dorky teen years as an employee of a RenFaire (I know. Shut up.) we were always perplexed and amused by the fetishy people who seemed to think a vaguely medieval theatre/shopping mall was a natural setting for kinkiness. Even among us dorks and history geeks and fantasy-junkies there was a hierarchy of weird, and these people were the ones we tarred, at the time, with the biggest Freak Brush. (deeply committed LARPers came close.)

    From my big glass house last month I watched a perfect mirror image of this at the BDSM club. A man in a furry cos-play outfit reminiscent of an Ewok addressed a man in a brown pleather loincloth (his wooden claymore was resting against the table). I only heard snatches of the conversation but the first guy said to the other “well, I’ve never LARPed, per say, though I’ve certainly come close.”

    In a room full of semi-nudity, outlandish hairstyles and costumes, howls of pain and murmurs of pleasure, these guys were the ones that set off the “Freak!” beeper in my head. I giggled to myself for a second, and then looked down at my 1930’s style gymslip and white knee socks and over at my partner with his waistcoat and cane. Dude, I thought, I’m Live Action Role Playing *right now*. It was wildly funny and humbling all at the same time.

    The word “fantasy” has different connotations when you are talking about pixies and goblins than when you’re talking about nipple clamps and paddles, but in the end it’s all about being able to live something you can’t live in real life. In each kind of fantasy you have a range of people from the seemingly normal to the seriously unhinged. There does seem to be this little bubble where Dungeons and Dragons enthusiasts, science-fiction fans, LARPers and kinksters start to fade into each other, and it is a deliciously odd space to observe.

    I think there’s a great potential for anger and alienation any time you have a subculture that defines itself by its differentness. It’s necessarily made up of people that were driven out of or who abandoned the “regular” or “normal” culture I think a lot of people only know that they’re different, that they are “freaks”, and it’s gotta be hard when you’re teetering on the edge of several different “freak” populations without really knowing where you belong. As someone who’s often felt marginalized and outsidered while “passing” for normal most of the time, I have a lot of sympathy for these people. I can see how the escapism of total commitment to a fantasy can turn on a dime to become what looks a lot like an actual lack of any proper sense of reality. That’s when they get a bit scary.

    (also, I know those strange, creepy, vacant space-cadet spanking-party people. Eep.)

    I’ve tried to cut this comment down but it’s not getting much smaller. Maybe I’ll take it to my own blog.

  4. that was GREAT fun to read, Caroline!

  5. Caroline: I’ve mentioned in the past that there was one person I’ve met at three different geekfests — a progressive rock festival, an SF convention and at a BDSM club.

  6. Thanks, Lisa. It always looks even longer after I’ve posted it and then I get paranoid that I’m going to annoy everyone. 🙂

    Rad, rock on! That makes me so happy for some reason. I think I have a crypto-zoologist’s interest in all things odd. I did end up burbling about this at length on my blog.

  7. Gee, I always thought that in the future all subs would have wheels on their feet. What’s strange about that?

  8. Jake: Well, I know that and you know that — I just don’t need some nut telling me.

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