I am not you’re typical “average” guy, but a guy none the less.
Being a creative-minded individual, I have a little more flair and refinery than your average beer-guzzlin’, tool-totin’ “manly” man. It’s my nature, can’t be helped. It’s why I am a graphic designer and not a grease-monkey.
But it puts me in a little bit of a quandary. You see, I don’t fit in. (For those of you who know me, you know this is very true.)
Being an individual of the more emotional/creative side of the brain and not the logical/analytical side of the brain, I am not into cars, sports, fishing or, God-forbid, hunting. When surrounded by other “average” men, I have very little to talk about.
When guys start talking about carburetors, first downs, the newest lure, or how to clean a fish, I have nothing to contribute. Even with some of the more “geeky” men, I still have no idea what they are talking about when they talk about “over clocking”, square roots, or I/O switches. Hell, even the gamer guys, when they start talking about DPS, tanking, hit, crits and kills (see, were back to the hunting thing again) I got nothing; or at the very least, very little. I just nod my head like I understand, while my eyes glaze over.
Now, if they were to talk about hue, saturation, tonal control, Bezier, layer comps, or even PMS*, I would have lots to say. But those guys are few and far between. [*PMS stands for Pantone Matching System in the design world, a standard for color matching.]
It doesn’t help either, that my life has given me experience in more “female-dominated” past-times (I was never close with my father—who was a mechanic and truck driver—I always hung out with my mom and sister).
When it comes to crafts and projects of the kind that I find interesting, you probably wouldn’t be surprised to know that I can crochet, backstitch, hot glue, decoupage, Appliqué, sew, bargain shop and scrapbook with the best of them.
This doesn’t always help me when thrust into a group setting. In a situation like that, I usually tend to hanging out with the ladies of the group (if there are any), because I can keep up when they talk about a whipstitch, doubles, frosting (the hair and cake kind), 30% off, embossing, stamping and scraping.
But, I don’t always fit in there either.
Most women that don’t know me, if I try and contribute, I am usually looked at as an outsider. I can see the thought go through their head, wondering why I am there. They are never too sure of me. Sometimes I am even rebuffed without given the chance, almost like I shouldn’t know any better. Not to mention the men in the group see me over by the ladies and write me off as gay, some of the ladies even have that thought. My outgoing flamboyancy and knowledge of fabrics and hair product portrays me as something I am not.
So you see my problem. I end up being the ‘odd-person-out’. I don’t understand the men, and the women don’t understand me.
People often wonder why I am a ‘sideliner’ at parties, why I sit off by myself with my iPhone and just observe, or stick like glue to my wife. What else can I do? I have tried just “hanging out” with the guys. But honestly, I can only take so much spittin and ball-scratchin.
Now, I have been fortunate of late with being blessed with male friends who understand when I am hanging out with their wives instead of playing rock band with them, and gal friends who totally accept me as their shopping buddy, or craft connoisseur. One of them even calls me out when I forget to use my “girl brain” when we are talking about certain things (e.g., while helping another friend of ours plan their wedding.)
I want to thank them. I greatly appreciate them for getting to know me and accepting me for who I am and not writing me off when they met me. I appreciate it.
[I don’t know where I was going with this. I was trying to write the scrapbooking post above and this was to be an intro, but it turned out too long, so it became its own post, but then I couldn’t figure out a way to end it…]