austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,

Although I laugh and I act like a clown

I don't tend to take things personally. This can be attributed to my cheery nature or to my phenomenal obliviousness. But I've entered adult life with enough self-confidence that I don't register the signs that something is socially amiss, and I take rejection as lightly as I take learning the snacks stand is out of the cold pizza slices (which are good, making Singapore's poor performance with hot pizza more of a mystery).

So I didn't find it noteworthy that nobody has responded to any of my alt.* postings on Usenet since August 2004. After all, just because I write something doesn't mean anyone has to find it interesting enough to mention. Besides, people respond to my things in sci.* or rec.* with reasonable frequency. So what's an un-responded-to post other than a little bit of rejection, which doesn't bother me? Finally, a friend in a group I've frequented since 1994 mentioned he hadn't seen the old regulars around, and I checked: if Deja Goo is to be trusted (famous last words) none of the alt.* groups has gotten anything I've written in just shy of two years. Mostly I'm amazed that I didn't think it strange that people didn't acknowledge my existence, and that nobody mentioned my absence before this. Now I'll have to be more sympathetic to otherwise dumb people in movies who don't realize until the last reel that they're ghosts and none of the living can see or hear them.

This explains the failure of my efforts in some small groups to propose Nicoll Threads1 to fend off the Local Imminent Death Of Usenet, and then my failure in having any measurable effect when I went ahead with them anyway. If I can get the posting glitch solved likely it'll all turn out okay, but think of the time and good conversation topics wasted. And I could have saved most of them if I'd just taken being ignored personally.

1 Named for james_nicoll. Nicoll Threads are determined efforts to post on-topic material oftener than one otherwise would. They've done wonders for the health of rec.arts.sf.written, and have a rather good reputation overall for strengthening groups.

Trivia: In the last half of 1970 and the first quarter of 1971 the Penn Central railroad lost track of something like 305 boxcars. (The exact number was hard to pin down.) In a lawsuit the company alleged they were repainted with the LaSalle and Bureau County Railroad's markings, and some of them were leased back to the Penn Central. Source: The Wreck of the Penn Central, Joseph R Daughen, Peter Binzen.

Currently Reading: Curse of the Narrows, Laura M MacDonald.


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