There’s this thing that happens when somebody comes at me with, “Just come out and be social for a while. You can leave whenever you feel like it.” The person who’s speaking suddenly morphs into the grim reaper, beckoning me with their bony death finger to come on, hang out, be social, you know you want to except all I hear is a ghostly rasp: “Come oooouuuuuttt, loserrrrr. You neverrr hang oooouuuuuttt like the other cool kids. Yeah, you’ll wear the wrong thing and probably say the wrong thing but you’re an adult, you’re supposed to goooooooo.”

Yikes. It’s not just me, right?

Nothing – and I mean nothing – strikes fear in my heart like a vague invitation to a group thing. And no, the “you can leave whenever you want part” doesn’t help because “whenever I want” is actually before I go through the struggle of figuring out what to put on my body and what to do with my hair, fighting to hide that crazy zit that will.not.go.away, and psyching myself up to make small talk with strangers when that’s akin to root canal in my world.

Now a small group of friends getting together? Going out for coffee or dinner or hanging at each other’s houses? That’s the sort of social I can get behind. All hail the introverts and their close knit circle of friends.

Linda hosts Stream of Consciousness Saturday. This week’s prompt is “social.” Use it any way you’d like. Have fun!