Where do people go to socialize in the mornings?
February 8, 2011 10:40 PM   Subscribe

I'm a single mid 20's male who's taken up working part time evening shifts (4-9 pm). I'm pretty introverted and have most of the common geek interests. I lack a car and am limited by trimet scheduling. How do I develop a social life?

I've considering writing, joining a gym and other self improvement type stuff, but I feel like I need to expand my social circle. I'm fairly new to Portland and the few people I know here are either busy or distant.

I've looked a little at meetup.com and while there are some interesting groups, I don't really see anything that fits my schedule well. I do feel like event type things are my best options though. I'm not really comfortable trying to break the ice with strangers.

Any thought on places, events or the like that I should look into?
posted by 0bs01337 to Human Relations (10 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Since there are only so many hours in the day, focus on stuff you genuinely like; you're more likely to meet people you want to know that way. (If you do stuff you kinda like, or that you do expressly for the purpose of meeting people, odds are that those people won't turn into friends - they'll just be people you aren't terribly interested in knowing.)

Alternatively, consider volunteering. It'll be emotionally satisfying while you're doing it, and you'll be around people. (If you're a hardware or software geek, shelters and food pantries and the like are always looking for tech help. Call one close to where you live or work and ask them if you can give them a few hours a week.)

I haven't lived in Portland in a long time, so I can't give specific advise. Good luck!
posted by goblinbox at 11:19 PM on February 8, 2011 [1 favorite]

posted by goblinbox at 11:20 PM on February 8, 2011

Belated welcome to Portland! There's a reddit meetup coming up (I would link you to it, but reddit's down right now, big suprise.) I think Wednesday. Check out the local subreddit, even though there's a lot of jerks there most people are helpful. Word to the wise about Portland...it's a tough nut to crack socially. People are nice but it's hard to form meaningful friendships and honestly, people just aren't super loyal and tend to look out for themselves. Good luck!
posted by Betty_effn_White at 1:01 AM on February 9, 2011

meet up post: http://www.reddit.com/r/Portland/comments/fhluf/portland_reddit_meetup_wednesday_216_life_of/

I know you mentioned morning, but this might still be happening by the time you get off.
posted by Betty_effn_White at 1:04 AM on February 9, 2011

You should come out to a MeFi meetup.
We tend to have one every few weeks.
In fact, there is one tomorrow night.
posted by nickthetourist at 8:42 AM on February 9, 2011

I'm fairly new to Portland

Which Portland? The new one on the West Coast or the original one on the East?

Also, gyms tend to be terrible places to socialize, FYI.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 9:40 AM on February 9, 2011

Given the "trimet" reference, it's PDX, OR. Anecdotally, it's taken most folks I know a year to a year and a half to feel like they have a good circle of friends here. Be patient with yourself.

Guardian Games on SE 3rd hosts events regularly, including a Sunday afternoon Eurogame meetup.

Do you have a bike? There are lots of organized bike rides, that might be something to sub in for the gym. There are also lots of urban walks via Mazamas and meetup groups.
posted by momus_window at 10:38 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]

My friends run a bowling league every Tuesday night, at the AMF Pro bowling center on Powell. It doesn't really get going until 10PM or so. Oh yeah, it's a heavy metal bowling league, so an interest in (or at least a tolerance for) Slayer, Iron Maiden, King Diamond and the like is pretty much mandatory. Look em up on Facebook if it sounds at all appealing; they are always welcoming new members.

You could start your own late nite ***insert fun activity that you like*** group on meetup.com. No doubt there are lots of people in the same boat as you.
posted by medeine at 11:36 AM on February 9, 2011

The secret here is that while plenty of people use Meetup.com for socializing, all the geek magic is happening at Calagator. There are a lot of before-working-hours coffee/programming events, and there's bound to be daytime stuff as well.

That said, try some of the more general activity groups on Meetup, like '20 and 30 somethings', because they do go to all the major Portland events, so you'll be able to get out to things and not have to do them alone. Same goes for movie-watching groups.

And if you can't do the MeFi meetups at night, maybe try organizing a lunch one? Shorter and no drinking, but still.
posted by lhall at 4:11 PM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]

Also, lifted from another thread here, this article suggests that socializing in Portland is all based around common interests, so try to choose one of the following:

"Artsy types, who groove on music, independent writing, visual arts, etc.

Policy wonks, who are active in grassroots politics, nonprofits, City Club, etc.

Environmental crusaders, who focus on issues of sustainability in the city and region.

Outdoorsy types, who love to hike, snowboard and otherwise get cold and wet.

Fearing we were leaving out a major P-town population, WW created its own, fifth category:

Hard-drinking, vegan/carnivore bike messenger slackers...'nuff said."

None of my PDX socializing so far has been particularly linked to any of those groups, so your mileage may vary.
posted by lhall at 4:16 PM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]

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