Coffee with neighborsgo

Angela Chambers, editor of the Plano edition of neighborsgo, asked if I could attend the coffee to talk to people about my neighborsgo experiences.
Background: neighborsgo is the Dallas Morning News’ citizen journalism site where some lucky stories make it into the print edition of neighborsgo, which comes out on Fridays. There are 18 different editions and people can pick up a copy at local Starbucks or get it with their Friday newspaper. Excellent way to bridge the gap between print and online media.
I took her up on the invitation though I tend to avoid such invitations for fear of getting lost in conversation. Not shy by nature (although I do get more energy from smaller groups and my energy drains with larger groups), but it’s frustrating to struggle in understanding people. I’d rather listen than speak as you learn more that way.
I met some smart and intriguing people. Of course, I didn’t understand them all and searched hard for keywords. We exchanged many business cards and I hope we’ll stay in touch online where it’s more comfortable.
Next Friday, I’m attending another event — invited and couldn’t pass up on it. At least, it’ll be mostly women — my track record is that I lipread women better than men.
That’s why I value social media. No worries about misunderstandings or not understanding.


  1. I agree with you, Meryl, social media interactions are much less draining than those in real life. But I also think that with practice the real situations can get a little easier. Your lipreading abilities can sharpen as can your skills at picking up keywords to get the gist.
    Do you tell the folks you’re meeting with that you have a hearing loss and how best to keep you in the loop? I like to put it all on the table at the beginning. While people often forget how to help you when they’re talking, it still makes it easier to say, “Can you please not cover you’re mouth,” if you’ve already clued them in. 😉

    • Meryl on March 30, 2009 at 8:30 am
    • Reply

    Paula, great tips and that’s what I do most of the time. Sometimes opportunity doesn’t present itself for me to let people know up front. I did go to another event last Friday and that went much better especially since it was all women.

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