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January 15th, 2016

Last year was a rather lonely one. We got together with friends here and there but not nearly as often as I would have liked. Everyone was always too busy (or they just said that because they don’t like us, who knows). This year I decided I had enough. You can’t force people to hang out with you, and as much as I love the small group of friends we have, I was growing frustrated with their lack of availability.

So I decided to join Meetup. I actually signed up on the site years ago but never went to any events. I forgot all about it too because when I signed up (again) I used a different email address so now I have two accounts. I joined a bunch of social groups and some game related ones and encouraged Joe to do the same.

I’m happy to report we attended our first meetup this past Tuesday evening and it was awesome! I didn’t even take a Xanax beforehand even though I was very nervous about meeting a bunch of new people.

When we arrived at the restaurant, the host greeted us and promptly split us up by assigning us to separate tables. At first I was freaked out, but she pointed out we were there to meet new people, not socialize with each other.

My table consisted of another host, and two women. A little later in the evening two latecomers, both male, joined us as well. I was pleasantly surprised by how easily the conversation flowed and how no one really interrupted or had their eyes glaze over when I was speaking. Hell, my own friends aren’t that courteous! Then again, it might just be over-politeness when meeting new people. Either way, though, it was fantastic. I’m really looking forward to having more things to do socially this year.

There were a total of 31 people at this event but due to the small tables it didn’t feel overwhelming. We arrived around 5:45 pm and left at 8:45 pm since our “bedtime” is 10 pm! Of course, once we got home we were both too wired to sleep. Coupled with not getting a good night’s rest the night before, it kinda sucked, but was well worth it. We almost never go out on a weeknight so it was a welcome change to our schedule.

Here’s the interesting part – I posted on Facebook about our Meetup experience, mentioning that last year I suffered from several bouts of loneliness. Not ten minutes later I get a Facebook message from my ex asking if Joe and I would like to join him and his wife next weekend to see a comedy show. That’s odd for a few reasons:

1) We’ve gotten together once before in 2014 when I hosted a game night, and since then I’ve tried to plan something with them but they can never make it. I was even telling Joe on the car ride home from our Meetup that we were never going to hang out with this couple again (not for the lack of wanting to, but due to their unavailability).

2) I usually chat with his wife about these things. I very rarely chat with my ex because I don’t want her to think I have some weird hidden agenda. We dated for three months twenty years ago and it wasn’t serious.

3) The last chat I had with her included me telling her if she ever wants to come over, with or without her husband, she’s free to hit me up and she didn’t even acknowledge it. I figured that meant she wasn’t interested in hanging out with me (although if the tables were turned I would have at least said thank you or something just to be polite instead of flat-out not responding).

I’m guessing due to her lack of response before she felt awkward messaging me herself, or maybe she really doesn’t want to hang out but he does. I’m not sure, but it feels awfully like a pity invite considering the timing. We probably won’t be going regardless because E is supposed to be coming over that weekend, although I need to make sure that’s still the case when he comes over tonight (we swapped weekends so he’s over two in a row).

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