Thursday, March 12, 2009

Hanging Out

A couple of weeks ago, Cap'n Peanut mentioned that he and PigPen were planning on going somewhere to watch UFC 96 and invited me to tag along and I, of course, said sure. However, a few days later Peanut let me know that the plans were off because his parents were having a birthday dinner for his older brother that evening. In the end it worked out, since I would have had to have left early from the Singles Game and Movie Night to meet up with them, and thus would have missed out on tormenting Trouble and Lizard with one of my Christmas presents while watching Back to the Future on Mei-mei's parents' garage door*, but I was still a little bummed not to get to hang out with PigPen and Peanut. Since I'm trying to be more proactive in maintaining my friendships and not not sitting around waiting for people to come to me, I emailed Peanut earlier today to ask if he and PigPen had any plans in place for this weekend, or if they might be free to hang out with me. Peanut replied that they were both free, and wanted to know what sort of plans I had in mind.

I really wanted to reply "I already said: to hang out. Duh!" but thought that such a tone might be counterproductive to actually getting them to hang out with me.

Peanut's reply asking what I wanted to do is a pretty good example of a difference in mindset I've noticed between several of my friends and myself, with my friends being much more action/event oriented while I often couldn't care less. It happens often with Peanut, who isn't much of a sit-around type of guy; it happens with Shack-Fu, who is very task-oriented at times; it happens with Li'l Random, who is difficult to pin down even with very specific plans, let alone nebulous ones; and it happens with Zinger and Pooh-Bear, who will often meet my requests to come visit with questions of if I had anything special I wanted to do. And almost every time my friends try to get some solid plan out of me, I respond with a "doesn't really matter to me" sort of attitude.

It's not that I don't want to go out and do stuff; it's just that, for me, going out and doing stuff isn't necessary for me to enjoy myself. When I call someone up and ask if they want to hang out, it's because I want to be around them, talk with them, joke with them, pick on them, etc. To me, it doesn't matter if this happens waiting in line at the movies, in the middle of an amusement park, or just sitting at one of our homes around the TV set. As long as I'm spending time with my friends, I'm content. And, yeah, some of my favorite memories stem from going out and doing stuff with my friends: the birth of Hyper Force 3000; Bumper Bowling; St. Valentine's Day Meal of Doom; any number of trips to Texas Road House with Cap'n Shack-Fu . . . the list goes on and on. But by the same token, I have incredibly fond memories of just sitting around the house with my friends, swapping stories and goofing around.

Once upon a time, such a focus on activities would get to me as, in my usual neurotic way, I would turn it around in my head as a sign that people really didn't want to hang out with me without something else going on to distract them from me. But as I've matured, I've come to accept that this is just another one of the personality quirks, much like the True Colors system or the Languages of Love/Appreciation; I may be content to sit at home and gab, but others need more stimulation, need to get out of the house and experience something. And as long as both sides understand that about the other, things can run much more smoothly, and with luck not devolved into "What do you want to do? I don't know, what do you want to do? I asked you first" territory.

So, which category do you fall into, my blog monkeys? Are you a "go-go-go-go-go!" person? Or a "Stay or go, it doesn't matter as long as I'm with my pals" person? Comment hungry bloggers want to know!

Back to my email conversation with Peanut: I did respond with a crack about how if I had to plan things the deal was off, which followed by some ideas about what we could do -- ideas that I had already come up with before my original email because I pretty much knew that a request for concrete plans would be forthcoming.

Who says I can't learn?

*A story for another time . . . perhaps


Bubblegum Tate said...

What I want with my friends is interaction so usually not "doing something" is better. Or engineering something, like a particular movie or tv show or board game, that I know will cause interaction. Plus, I am at heart a lazy man so that might have something to do with it.

BTW, you might want to rethink the tag "Neurotica." It sounds like dirty stories about people with emotional problems. I'm afraid to look but this being the internet, I bet there is just such a fetish available on countless websites.

m.R. said...

I am finding that game nights are fine with me although now that i feel good again I feel the golf bug and the let's go somewhere twinge.

Goobygal said...

I tend to like a quiet activity like dinner or a reality show so that we can converse. Yes I know watching a reality show with me is seldom quiet and is often filled with profanity.

My captcha word is colikers which reminds me of my pregenned password form OSU which was baillimp. It sounds like a video game character colikers baillimp is maligous.