Thursday, November 12, 2009


I said something offhand to Joe the other day about not liking being the center of attention in a large group and it's gotten me thinking about the truthfulness of what I said. I'm not shy; those that know me know I certainly don't mind offering my opinion, or having my share of a conversation (probably more than my share, sometimes!), but that's usually in an intimate, conversational setting. But to have someone singling me out, pointing to me, in front of a large group? That I don't like. The very idea makes me squirm.

Saying it out loud sort of surprised me, though. I wondered, have I always felt this way? Didn't I, at one time, happily sing solos? Act in plays? Has motherhood, or more likely, the lack of attention-getting opportunities, made me more reserved than I once was? Is this a bad thing? Does it even matter?

I don't have good answers to these questions. Some people are comfortable with large groups and attention, others are not. Some people, in a cocktail party setting, say, will want a large group gathered around them so they can regale the group with stories. I often love being part of that group and laughing at the good jokes I'm sure to hear. But I'd usually much rather be part of a smaller group and have a real conversation about something. I think I've always been like that, but I can't always remember.


AlexanderTheGreat said...

I think it is analogous to public speaking. The more one does it the more comfortable they become. Get out of practice and it can be really nerve racking (speaking from experience). Though also some other people are just egotistical attention w... wanters.

Superdad said...

ALex - I think you've nailed it.

Cate said...

"egotistical attention 'wanters' " That made me laugh.