I got an email the other day, I don't think I know the author of it. It read:
great site!!That was it. If I knew the person it would make sense as a good-natured dig, but as an email that's totally out of the blue from a total stranger...
but reckon you need to get out more, perhaps for a byte (?) to eat or something
Leaving aside the obvious problems with the content, and leaving aside the fact that this person talks about my "site" without saying which site they're talking about (my main site, my astronomy site or my weather site?), what I find really odd is the false dichotomy that the email is based on.
It's something I've run into for most of my adult life, and for a large part of my teens too. As well as having the sorts of interests that most people have (eating, drinking, practicing procreation, socialising, shouting at the TV, etc...) I also have a whole bunch of "geeky" interests too. Astronomy and computers have been with me since I was a child, an interest in the weather is a pretty recent development and is still very much in its infancy. What is it about the "geeky" interests that makes people like the author of the email create that dichotomy that says "either you do normal things, or you do geeky things, but you can't do both?"
I've tried to get it a number of times but, mostly, I just can't get there. I can't understand what it is about some people such that when they see you have a passion about something they assume that's the total of you, that's all you do, that you have no life outside of that interest.
Just how insular do you have to be to think like that?