A Socially Trying Chameleon

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Are you a chameleon with a remarkable superpower: adaption? You most certainly are! How do you cope in social situations?

I’m sat facing the Christmas tree wearing fluffy bed socks and an oversized slashed Coors beer t-shirt which I bought up in Camden. I don’t know which is more distressed, me or it? Actually, despite being in tier four of this covid situation I’m in a place of calm. The house is festive and tidy, the triple wick candle is filling the room with the scent of balsam and white spruce. A deep inhalation takes me back into the forest. My husband is happily milling around in the background and we both have just exchanged gorgeous Christmas cards that made us emotional.

Okay, scene set so you know I’m not sat in a dim room feeling super, super, super suicidal (that phrase from a Marina song always tickles me). A little chameleon popped into my mind and I thought hey kiddo, I think I relate to you! As I rubbed greasy Palmers cocoa butter into my fuckwit feet I reflected on scenarios and social groups.

My nightmare is this: social gatherings where you wear a smile and knock back wine. Give me Pepsi Max okay, ya? There are clusters of people all stood with one hand behind their backs laughing at tired old jokes. Groups hogging the single leather sofa beside a fake fireplace and others sat at tables trying to escape from each other. I am stood with my back against the wall pretending to enjoy the Château Margaux, green eye darting around the room like a cat watching a fly. I know I need to circulate. Weddings and funerals are a persona assault course. How can I get through this?

Adaption. My (and everybody’s) superpower! I’m unsure of who I am unless I’m at home alone immersed in movies and videogames where I feel safe but out of that environment my head is full of fuck. Over the years I’ve learned to suss out the situation and adjust myself to it. Change colour and blend in like a chameleon. I’ll quickly work out what people are discussing and interested in so will find myself feeling part of the group by managing to conjure up fragments of the topics involved. I’ll even manage to nod at the right moments and ask a convincing question or two.

But remember my filters are almost always non-existent and I am prone to raising the subject of horror films, death and will definitely put my foot in it.

Top up my wine, I’ll retreat to my wall.

© Copyright: Sharon Lawson™

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