- Poets, with their proverbial "head in the clouds," tend to get pedantic over cocktails and are often accused of being disconnected from reality (behind their backs, of course) and at worst, boring. And although most poets write poetry to convince the world they’re not, in fact, boring, this is the academic version of the man insisting on the first date,“I never hit women.” It's eerie and often disconnected from reality.
- Two words: Pretentious and Precious. Poets foolishly think they're more interesting than they actually are or think the things they love are more interesting and valuable than those things actually are to other people. It's only fair, really. Poets don't care about the obsessions of others or think everyone else is brilliant. Why should party people return the favor?
- Related issue: in extreme cases poets can be insufferably arrogant, often accused of “lording their thoughts over others.” They take a posture of being better informed, better read and better able to understand the subtle nuances. They aggressively question everyone’s ideas in order to grandstand their own. This is a bad arguing posture and 9 out of 10 Playboy models would include this in their top list of turnoffs. This will not get you laid. Why would it? Who likes being shit upon? This arrognce suraces in anyone who responds to your comments with useless condescending prefaces such as “Listen my friend….” which is presumptous because you are not anybody's friend yet.
- Also related: poets who use obscure references in conversation in order to feel superior. I’ve seen this trick at parties and corporate meetings. You try to use complicated sentence structure and arcane words to fool others into thinking you are really saying something. Some people write entire poems this way. You may be fooling some dim bulbs in the room but not the other literates (who are probably there on the down-low) who actually know how to diagram a sentence and have figured out pretty quick that your blather doesn't contain both a subject and a predicate. Boob.
- Poets love to talk; listening gives them heartburn. If this describes you, stay at home and talk to yourself. It’s a big world out there. People are having conversations. It’s not all about you.
- Goth drunks. There's absolutely nothing wrong with being a Goth drunk but usually they only party well with other Goth drunks.
- Poets are known for lacking in fashion sense. I admit I have none. We have no mental energy left over for that sort of thing and most partiers will give you a pass on this. After all, they already think you are clueless.
- Poets are known for having a bad sense of humor. This one really hurts. Even poets who think they are pretty damn funny...in the cold light of day, they are pretty amateurish compared to the deft comedic acrobatics of our top comedic bards like Daniel Tosh or Trey Parker and Matt Stone. Hell, Mark Twain can still kick their ass with his well-crafted comedy. So I usually sound pathetic if I try to offer myself up as a funny bard. No one believes me.
- Poets are uncorrectable, the stubborn type of person who will read items 1-8 above and say, “Who cares about your stupid bourgeoisie parties anyway!"
- Poets are sensitive. After a few cold shoulders, they might make a suicidal gesture over the bannister, but not before a very wordy, rambling soliloquy.
Stereotypes? Yes. Hurtful? Yes. But as long as poets still behave this way at parties, they will continue to be unpopular and not even get invited to social gatherings in book form, which is the real sad situation.
However, we can get back on the social calendar if we take stock before every social encounter and focus on some new social tactics. As Andrea Lunsford says, Everything’s an Argument. To impress people that you are a funny, brilliant poet you need to sell your argument. And to do that you need:
- Mad arguing skillz
Short of that, try modesty, curiosity, listening, a little itty-bit of affection for that innocent body your words are hitting.