Here are portions of some of the responses in regards to my presence here:
“... I feel this community has been violated,” “... quite unnerving...,” “I am really confused,” and my personal favorite, “who the fuck is Shawn?”
It seems that this “nice little family of bloggers” is indeed a family of sorts, and I kind of feel like a distant third cousin, reaking of alcohol, who has just stumbled upon the family reunion in the park, unexpected and unannounced.
Fortunately, the negative comments weren’t so much directed at me; people were just confused as to what I’d done to earn an AIDSmeds.com Blog. Moreoever, I don’t think it helped my status that I also debuted as a “top”, with my blog being at the top of the page, one of the first ones you see when you clickity click on BLOGS.
I learned of the rucus that I’d unwittingly created on the “Comment on the HIV Blogs” section, where I explained why I was a stranger to the Forum community that comprises this Blogging Family: “...my history is with POZ, of course, not with AIDSmeds. The blog is just a continuation of that history with the magazine, as well as a chance to share one more viewpoint on living with HIV with visitors to the site.”
I have been invited to join the Forum discussions by community members and, yes, there were smooches and well-wishes in addition to the above quotage, which I appreciate. But the offer to make new friends and, in a sense, retroactively earn my place here among the regulars is somewhat daunting, I must admit.
So, for now, don’t mind ol’ Cousin Shawn. He’ll just sitting under this tree, sipping from a brown paper bag while the rest of ya’ll’s play some softball and enjoy a picnic-style lunch.