Unsociable Richard

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I've been exploring my hard drives. From a fairy early edition of this website I found one of my first attempts to describe myself to people I might meet. It makes me smile now, more than a bit crude. It has enough personal archeological significance for me to preserve it here.

Someone emailed to ask me why I'm doing this if I'm not social.

I was your classic nerdy kid. I was very bright and tended to be interested in things wholly different than the people around me. In junior high school (called middle school some places) I taught myself elementary calculus and read books on physics. When I got older it became literature. I wasn't interested in any of the stuff that others were.

I wasn't sexually driven to socialize which brings some people out of their shell (or buries them in it forever). When I became sexual I did manage to be friendly with attractive people (oh, those animal drives!) for a time. But I got bored with promiscuity in my twenties. And fell in love with a like-minded woman and hence had no reason to try to be social anymore.

Even now I do not feel much in common with most people. I can empathize with their troubles but find most their opinions baseless and silly. My own goal to become as free from opinion and assumption as possible. I'll never reach the goal but it is there. When I meet people with opinions that I don't respect I have no urge to debate them. I just don't want to interact with them.

I've never developed the automatic responses of somebody who has been associating with people more normally. These aren't conscious skills but habits that really develop when you are young.

It is extremely difficult to acquire them in later years.Particularly if you don't really wish to. I take pleasure in the mere fact of being. While I do know the restlessness that many people confuse with boredom it hits me only rarely. Reading, listening, thinking are real pleasures.

I haven't been spending the last forty years wishing that I were more social. I've always had a few strong and enduring friendships.


Hey that last part is a portrait of myself and it scares me.

At present I don’t feel like I want to interact with anyone but I am firmly convinced that an individual’s life is worthless if it is not for the interactions with others.

Either that or a unified Field theory.

I guess I am plain egoistic.

There’s nothing wrong with egoism (or egotism) if it is in proportion to reality.

I have a lover that I live with and my business partner is my best friend of 30 years. They make up for the lack of quantity of social interactions in my life.

And there are a few nice customers who visit my used bookshop that I always enjoy seeing.

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