My family lives in a little cape cod near Cincinnati. We love it here…especially my wife, who has many friends and she loves our little neighborhood. I also enjoy it here but it’s going on 9 years and I have to be honest…I don’t know anybody. Well…that’s not necessarily true. I’ve made friends, of course. Our neighbors are all awesome. My wife has made friends with several families who have now become our friends and our kids all play together and they are great. But the reason I say I don’t know anybody is because I have only lived here 9 years. And I don’t go out. And I don’t really meet people. And when I do, I’m really not all that chatty. And most people who live here in our little town have lived here their entire lives.
The other night, my wife & I went out on a couples night. We went out with 2 other couples. One couple we’ve known for years. The other have quickly become 2 of our best friends. So we all went to a local restaurant and we aren’t in there for 30 seconds when people start to recognize our friends. First a brother came up, then an old high school friend, then a former co-worker, then another high school friend. And so it went…all night long.
Wanna know how many people knew me?
And I’ve lived here 9 years.
Does this bother me? Not really. I don’t socialize the way my wife does. She knows people on the schoolboard. She knows parents & teachers and a few local politicians. I know the people on my street. Well…I know a FEW of the people on my street and a couple who live one street away. Other than that, I’m a little limited on my neighborly knowledge. So when I’m sitting in a restaurant and no one knows who I am, that’s fine by me. I know who my friends are and where they are. Facebook has seen to that. And I know that when I’m in Milwaukee this weekend I know several people there. And when I go to Seattle, I know people there. And when I go just about anywhere in the United States…I know people everywhere. When you travel and work in places all over, everywhere is your home. I’m limited here in my neighborhood, sure. But in the grand scheme of things, I’m not as unfriendly as I seem. As a matter of fact…I’m pretty damn popular by some standards.
So I don’t fret when I’m not noticed at the local grocery store. That’s fine, because in MY mind, I know where my friends are and that’s good enough for me. Well…except on a Friday night when I’m out with my wife & a few friends who know EVERYBODY. Then I wish that maybe I knew a few more of my neighbors. Maybe this summer I’ll try to work on that…