Tuesday, November 6, 2012

seeking: book club members.

{photo by megan}

You know that book I loved so much, MWF Seeking BFF?

Well, life is imitating art. This summer, four of our most devoted book club members embarked on adventures of their own, leaving Tallahassee -- and our book club -- behind. Now, the book club I've loved for four years is dwindling in number. We're starting to look a little pitiful each month, and since book club feels a little bit like my baby, I'm taking it personally. We need new members -- just one or two to boost attendance and make it less noticeable when others of us aren't able to attend -- and it's getting desperate. 

The members who moved to new homes tried to suggest the club to friends before they left, but nobody's stuck. The rest of us have exhausted our resources, randomly asking neighbors and classmates and baby yoga attendees, and we're not quite sure who else to invite.

Enter me, being awkward with every plaid-wearing female who comes into the store. 

It feels a lot like dating, or, more specifically, flirting -- something I have very little practice with since Jordan and I met in a great books literature class when we were 18. 

If a 20- or 30-something female comes through our doors, you can guarantee I am paying attention. (It is, in fact, as creepy as it sounds.) I'm looking at what books they're buying, trying to guess based on their wardrobe and book selection whether they'd be

a) too intellectual for our book club (a more-common-than-you'd-think problem in a university town),
b) too low key for our book club (as in, more interested in wine choice than in the book of the month), or 
c) the perfect fit. 

Like any other star-crossed lover, if a girl comes into the store fitting my ridiculous criteria (aforementioned plaid, appreciation for Kinfolk Magazine or children's literature, good taste in bestselling fiction), I immediately become tongue-tied, unable to even invite them to book club because... Where would I even begin? Isn't a little creepy to randomly invite someone to your book club without even knowing their name? 

MWF Seeking BFF encouraged me to be brave and borderline absurd, but I'm still the same old introverted me, and I'm not sure finding out someone's name and Twitter handle via their credit card information is entirely appropriate. (Though I'm certainly not above it, if the past few weeks are any indication.)

I guess what I'm saying is: We need more book club members. I work in a bookstore. This should be easy. 

So what am I missing? How do you meet new people and make new friends?

And, if you're somehow reading this and from the Tallahassee area, please don't think I'm a weirdo. Instead, come try out our book club and decide in person! Seriously, it's a lot of fun and the best thing I've done as a grown-up. 

We'd love to have you, even if you don't wear plaid. 


Shannalee Mallon said...

hahaha! I so relate. Wish I lived in Tallahassee!

Anonymous said...

I've learned very vividly as of late just how jam packed "you have not because you ask not" really is. Somewhere inside of me, I'm always waiting to hear someone say: "I want to spend time with you." "I want to be your friend." "I want to laugh about books with you." "I want to know who you are." I know I can't be the only one who hopes like that, but when do I ever do the asking?

So I started asking. And the girls and the young women and the older women I've asked all show the same emotion. Relief. Someone wants to spend time with them. Someone wants to laugh with them about books or MAC lipstick or Pitch Perfect. Someone wants to know who thu are. And just like that--both our needs are met.

Your book club, I'm confident, is a gem. There are ladies in Tallahassee who are just waiting to belong to something fun and smart and perfectly nerdy like that. Ask them, girl! I know you can.

Amanda said...

Dang it. I wish I lived closer, because I'd be so in. And I have a few plaid items in my closet. So we're good.

Laken said...

1. I feel you, sister. In a similar but even creepier way, Tyler and I are currently on a hunt for couple friends. It seems we both forgot how to flirt and got really awkward in the time we've been together - made worse by the fact that we still live in a college town where people look older than they are and all of sudden we're couple-flirting with 19 year olds.

2. Do you own MWF seeking BFF? I looked for it in my bookstore a few days ago but it wasn't in stock. I'd love it borrow it, if you have it :)

3. Seriously considering moving to Tallahassee just for this. Going to start suggesting Tyler get a job at FSU

Erin said...

OH I wish I lived nearby...I'd be there in a heartbeat!

Hailey Marie said...

Oh how I wish I lived nearby! I'd love to join! In the meantime, I love checking to see what books are on your list and trying to track them down at the library. So glad to hear you're loving your new job and that life is so good right now! Happy early anniversary next Thursday! :)

Eliza :: Case Study said...

I would be at your book club in a hot second if I lived near you! We recently moved from VA to GA and I'm having a hard time meeting people + making friends. It gets harder once you're out of college...at least for me! It seems that overnight you go from meeting new people constantly to never meeting new people...and not having the courage to flirt with strangers who may want to be friends. Nice to know I'm not in this alone :) I wish I could come to your book club! Since I can't, I'd be happy to be your email/blogger friend. If you're still looking :) xoxo, eliza

lacey said...

lately i've been thinking i needed to join a good book club. i don't even know where to start to find one. maybe move to your neighborhood from north carolina?