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  • Writer's pictureDavid Berger

I'm Not Like You



I’ve always been on the fringe, even when I didn’t realize what the fringe was.


It’s amazing about how life gives you the knowledge you need, but sometimes you’re just not able to decipher it yet. Life pushes you front and center into places you’re not prepared to go. In an effort to help you, my readers, get to know me, I thought I’d share some facts and info that will give you a broader image.


Some basics: I’m a Gemini with a sister born seven years later on the same day—June 14. My paternal grandfather also had the same birthday. My ancestry is Ukrainian and Lithuanian, although I constantly get asked if I’m Irish. Maybe it’s my love of Ireland, or maybe it’s my fair complexion. I’m a Hufflepuff, but that’s only because one of my students made me do the Pottermore quiz many years ago, and it stuck. Not a fan of Rowling’s politics, especially regarding her anti-transgender viewpoints. I’m a Democrat and a staunch liberal. I’ve been an openly gay educator for over twenty years. I write stories with gay characters because that’s what younger me didn’t know he wanted or needed, but it would have changed his life. I’m an introvert, which is hard for some people to believe, but as an educator, I do what I have to do to be outgoing, even when it goes against my nature. My favorite color is blue, more like a royal blue but any shade works. Don’t worry—nothing I share here has anything to do with any secret questions or password related knowledge.


As a fantasy and sci-fi geek, my friends tend to be in the same circle. I love Trivial Pursuit, but really only for the science or literature questions. I am not a team sports guy. I run. I go to the gym. I prefer more solitary social pursuits. I’ve done cosplay, a genderbent version of Wonder Woman. My entire home office is a shrine to her, filled with figures, posters, Funko Pops, and so much more. See this blog post for more on my love of the character. And, yes, I’ve done the “wonder spin” in adulthood. Do. I adore Saturday morning cartoons from the 70s and 80s. My musical tastes include most anything, except for rap, country, or screamo. My favorite song, and I rarely have favorites, is “Summer Breeze” by Seals and Crofts. When I find a song I like, I listen to it repeatedly. It becomes an earworm. Sushi is my “last meal” food. Spicy tuna is the ambrosia of the gods. I don’t really drink, but if I do, I prefer Guinness or Jameson or red wines like Pinot Noir or Merlot.


I love interior design and lean into the Mid-Century Modern aesthetic. I lived that aesthetic before it was known as Mid-Century Modern. I don’t shy away from bright colors—nothing about me is subtle. I love candy corn (although I can’t really eat it anymore). If I am eating cake, it’s chocolate with chocolate icing. Coffee ice cream is number one with chocolate running a very close second. Lemon anything. Coffee is my life blood—black, no milk or sweetener. I don’t like cruises. I prefer mountains to beaches, and I love to camp.


While none of these things is particularly weird, I find myself on the outside of the social arena. I do have friends, but I don’t socialize much. Not a fan of bars or clubs, I lean more toward cafes. I think that keeps me from being invited out much. Many friends like a good trivia or karaoke night, but I’m just not that interested in being around a lot of drinking. I enjoy dining alone in restaurants (I’ve been known to bring a book to read) and watching movies alone in a theater.


I love thunderstorms. I love to connect with nature. Long walks. Pensive moments by a lake. Staring into the waters of a river. Smelling fresh cut grass. I’m both Jewish and spiritual. I write for me and me alone. Storytelling is part of my persona. It shines within me as an inner light that illuminates my path. I feel connected to the vast writers in the world’s history. They humble me with their greatness.


I call myself weird, but it’s not an insult. Rather, it’s the idea that I’m interested in things most of those in my life are not. I think it alienates me. I have to live my authentic life, and if it means I live it without a lot of close ties, then so be it. I don’t think my friends or colleagues understand me sometimes. Many times. All the time. That could just be a perception of mine, only grounded in my own insecurities. At 56, I’m still growing. I live my life as it happens, and I won’t abandon the things that give me joy. I can’t. Won’t.


So, I could blather on and on about more things about me, but this should be enough for now. If it helps give you a glimpse into who I am, then I have been successful. If you’re one of the weird as well, reach out. We’ll have jackets made. We’ll each embrace who we are.


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