tirsdag den 3. december 2013

Your First Meet-Up: Joining the Mad Tea Party

With International Lolita Day coming up this saturday, I thought it would be appropriate to write a post on the topic of the Lolita's very first meet-up. After all, this is the perfect time to go to a meet-up for the first time! There are meet-ups happening all around the world on the same date, and even if there isn't one near you, it's the perfect occasion for you to arrange one! (As if we need an occasion other than just being fabulous people..)

The first Meet-up seems to be the dreaded big test for New Lolitas. It is an event of excitement, but also of great nervousness: Will they like me? Will they all laugh at me and whisper about me behind my back? Will they be embarassed to be seen with me if I happen to be "ita"?It is sad that something that should be looked forward to as something exciting and a chance to meet-up with new people with whom we share a huge interest has turned into an event of insecurity, and this insecurity seems to spread like wildfire through the new members of our community! I don't know from where the rumors of horribly elitist and exclusive meet-ups come from (the fairytale-like land of the "Elitist Lolita", mayhaps?), but I am sure meet-ups in most communities will be a pleasant experience if you just keep the following in mind:

Take Initiative
Even though I do believe that it would be appropriate for the other girls to do their best to engage new members of the community in conversation and make them feel like a part of the group, it won't encourage them to do so if you don't seem interested! Introduce yourself, strike up conversations with as many other people as you can, and don't get intimidated. None of the other participants, even the most fabulously dressed ones, are anything more than ordinary people with at least one interest in common with you, which means that you have plenty of things to talk about, and there's no need to feel like you're "not worthy". 
Ask questions! Where did she get her shoes? How long has he been into the fashion?
Taking initiative is actually a good idea on multiple levels. You can also take initiative before the meet-up! Ask if you should bring something, if there is anything you can help the host/hostess with, if you should plan a game, bring cookies or anything else. Being ressourceful like this is usually a source of admiration and will get you on the community's good side instantly. Also, by planning a game or something like that, you're making sure that you're gonna do something that makes it easier for you to bond with the other girls, if you're no good at the "talking to new people" thing. It's an ice-breaker! 
I recommend charades. It keeps being popular in my own community- It's especially fun if you make the main topic "Print Names" or something else that's Lolita-themed.

At the beginning of this post I made a quick note that if there are no meet-ups going on at ILD in your area, 
You could plan one
 Even if it's gonna be your first meet-up, I recommend it if you think you can handle it! Planning a meet-up is really not that difficult. You'll be responsible, yes, but it's not like you're planning a wedding here. You just have to maintain control over the basic stuff. That means keeping the community updated with the meeting time and place, where you'll be going, writing down who'll be attending to make sure you don't forget anyone at the meeting spot, making sure there's room for you at the café/restaurant/wherever (calling the place in advance or making a reservation), and knowing how to get there. 
That's pretty much it, and I'm sure the community will appreciate it. 
You can never have too many meet-ups!

So, what are you waiting for? Dress up and get out there!
Happy International Lolita Day!
(I'm going to a meet-up on saturday too, so keep an eye out for a post with plenty of pictures!)

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