Narcissistic internetalis insecuritas

Hmmm… okay, I’m gonna let a personal snippet creep through into this blog. Just a snippet, mind you – I’ve gotta keep that quota of professional announcements trundling along. :

Clarion South 2005 finished about a year (plus a week or so) ago, and I’ve been introspectively introspecting on the relationships, namely the internet relationships, that formed/lasted/etc since then between the Clarionites.

Some CSers were established bloggers: Tessa, Deb, and Suzanne. Others, like Susan, picked up a blog around Clarion. Others still, like Rjurik, have since given into the blog thang.

Some tutors and convenors were active bloggers: Heather and Scott (I can’t be stuff linking anyone else – they’re all on the lefthand links bar!), still more, like the Hogemeister and Margo picked up blogs since.

Here’s the thing. I miss Clarion. It was rough on me, and I felt many times socially dysfunctional there, but it was an experience worth having. It was the first chance to actually form friendships with like-minded people. Friendship is such a loose term, and one I don’t bandy about liberally, but I felt I made friends with a couple of people at Clarion. Kenrick Yoshida is the most honest-to-god strangest, most tangentially-insightful, cheerful/depressed person I’ve ever known. Suzanne was a crazy funster who did everything – joy and desolation – at about 1000% (that’s why our collaboration story was such a blend of contrasts, but fuck it! on re-reading that story, it’s not bad at all with a little cleanup – dragons in space rock!). There’s also Nathan and Susan and Deb and Mark and Anne and Evan and a whole bunch of others who I felt connections with while at Clarion. I also thought the convenors were excellent, excellent people. The two Roberts felt like kindred spirits, and Kate and Heather were breaths of fresh air (and Unicorns, the latter).

I would have liked as close a bond with the tutors, but I think, I dunno, maybe I can’t form an easy bond in seven days? I thought I did, but time doesn’t seem to bear it out, at least not readily.

I see on blogs, the CS05 yahoo group, and elsewhere an easy connection between some of the tutors and some of the grads, and it makes me wonder where my easy rapport disappeared to? 2005 was a pinnacle year for my writing and editing, and perhaps I’ve taken myself and my work far too seriously? I can’t help but think that the occasional bout of narcissitic internetalis on my behalf has affected my interactions. Part of me can’t help but think my unwavering drive to become ‘top of the heap’ forced people to view me as a competitor, or more like an upstart, which would have affected an easy online rapport. I am an upstart, but not a disingenuous one.

Daily, I pray to the God of Consolations that the damage, the tarnish, the whatever, isn’t permanent. My prayers to the God of Consolations (incidentally, the title of my next collection) continue to be met with silence.

Music on rotation: I’m still in that damn silverchair Cemetery.

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