so im trying to integrate into The Boy's social group, and its giving me Lots To Think About. my millstone's always turning, so i love me some grist. i plan social interactions, and just acquired a whole new social sphere to explore in theory:

heres this person i like, and i want them to like me. what kind of person are they? how can i earn their trust and respect? how should i behave towards them based on the kind of person that they are? what shouldnt i do?

im an aspie, so i have no intuitive grasp of neurotypical social interaction At All. i never got the free set of social skills in the mail like every other kid seemed to- ive had to work up my social from a severe deficit. ive made an in-depth study of the art of interpersonal diplomacy; ive done so much just to get the kind of social skills most NTs get for free.

this is what i mean when i say im artificially genuine: my diplomatic skills; my mind-modelling faculty (something else i didnt get for free); the propriocentric control i use to perform body language & facial expressions; the study ive made of tonality and speech.... all of these are consciously acquired skills ive built up over the last 10 years. and ive made it.

at the one hand i can pass for neurotypical (for awhile), which is useful, but moreover i can get NT people to like me. im not asocial- i need social contact, i need friends. i also need to make it through a day without generating a 15-foot radius of social awkwardness wherever i go. so i learned to speak NT Social Skills as a second language.

theres some things i still cant do. its a performance, so when im not actually talking to someone my face turns off; i cant maintain a permasmile. my emotions are always written all over my face. also i was never able to beat the problem with eye contact that we aspies usually have. something about that aversion is just ineluctable.

but i did it. im fluent. maybe i can finally achieve my real desire- integration into a social group. ive trained for this moment for a decade.