I am not good at the professional mixers/networking cocktail parties. At all. My profession and station in life, however, requires that I attend these types of events regardless of the social anxiety they inflict upon me.
Tonight I had to attend one of these events put on by the Environmental Business Council in downtown Boston. I was excited about going to a party in Town, but I also knew that it would involve a lot of smiling and nodding, talking to strangers as though I was actually interested in what they were blathering on about and swapping business cards. Gah!
When I arrived, my social anxiety kicked into full swing. I immediately sought out the bathroom so that I could escape the din of eager networkers rambling on about the services their companies provide and what new and exciting technologies they are applying in innovative ways too do fuck all to environmental problems. The secondary din was provided compliments of the lawyers. Theirs was a buzz of their own special jargon, discussing rifts and acquisitions and who is litigating who. Blek! By the way, several people at different times through the course of the evening encouraged me to go to law school because I was such a natural.
After escaping the throng of people that could not be traversed without touching someone (that is, shoving them to get past), I found a quiet balcony where I sent the following text message to some of my best mental health anchors. You know in case I went around the bend was hauled away by the white coat army, they can say the warning signs were there.
Social anxiety GAH!
I'm at a business holiday mixer with all the Bostonian environmental movers and shakers and I just want to puke and leave.
Here are the responses I received:
From my favorite hot shot Los Angeles publicist - Down a martini and show off some cleavage
Sound advice for many an uncomfortable situation.
From Sassy Sundry - I think I'm going to need to read about that!
Darlin', your wish is my command.
From Miss M of the 2007 Great Texas Adventure fame - Look for single dudes, or some other gal with a drink who is also bored. God, I hope there are drinks!
There were, but I held out and went for some straight scotch toward the end of the party. I didn't want to get myself juiced enough to get into trouble with the boss man.
I weathered it. It was ok. I sucked up to a client that I'd done a project for when I first moved to the east coast. I met a boy with a very firm grip and has hands that are comparable in size and girth to Andre the Giant's. I have a bonifide crush on him and think that I shall engage in filthy fantasies about him shortly.