New Yorkers, Rose Fox has planned a meetup in Manhattan on May 23. It’s an amazingly comprehensive event description and plan, so check it out below the cut and join them if you can.
Yours in envy,
NYC Awkwardeer Meetup, Saturday May 23
SPECIAL GUEST: London Awkwardeer Kate!
Coordinator: Rose Fox (they/them), rose sploosh tocotox splat net (replace onomatopoeia with @ and . to turn this into an email address).
2 p.m.: Meet at Washington Square Park on the lawn between Holley Plaza and the Arch, at the spot marked by a blue picnic blanket in this map:
And more or less behind the orange construction vehicles in this nifty photosphere (click and drag it to look around):
Nearest transit and directions: A/B/C/D/E/F/M to West 4th Street, north (uptown) end of train, exit onto 6th Avenue and Waverly Place, walk one block east on Waverly to Washington Square; N/R to 8th Street, north (uptown) end of train, exit onto Broadway and 8th Street, walk one block south on Broadway to Waverly and three blocks east on Waverly to Washington Square. Enter the square through the giant white marble arch and walk toward the fountain; we’ll be in the patch of lawn to your right, behind the benches (and probably back under the trees a bit for some shade).
Access: The park is wheelchair-accessible. There are wooden park benches nearby for those who prefer not to sit on or roll onto the grass.
~4 p.m.: Decamp to Argo Tea Café, 75 University Place at East 11th Street.
Nearest transit and directions: L/N/R/Q/4/5/6 to Union Square. There are a million exits from that station and the layout’s confusing, so it’s hard to specify one, but aim for exits that say 14th Street or Union Square South, or take any exit because it’s easier to find your way around aboveground. Once outside, get to the southeast corner of 14th Street and University Place (where Strawberry is, next to Forever 21 and Whole Foods) and walk three blocks down University Place.
Access: Argo is wheelchair-accessible and has a wheelchair-accessible unisex bathroom.
~7:30 p.m.: Dinner at a nearby restaurant to be determined, depending on the size and dietary restrictions of the group.
Safety: Don’t touch anyone or their stuff without their permission. Don’t harass anyone. Don’t block anyone’s exit. If someone states a boundary, respect it. Don’t use slurs or start arguments for the sake of arguing. If you repeatedly or aggressively act like a jerk, we can and will ask you to go elsewhere. If someone is a jerk to you or near you and you need backup, let Rose know and they will help you out.
Respect: Actively practice courtesy, kindness, respect, and empathy. Please default to using “they” for anyone who doesn’t state or display their pronouns. At least one attending person has a pretty severe scent allergy, so please refrain from wearing sprayed-on or dabbed-on perfume, cologne, or floral essences. If you see someone who appears to be in distress, quietly ask “Are you okay?”–and if they say yes, respect that and leave them be.
Rain plan: Meet at Argo at 2 p.m. and stay there forever.
How to find us: Look for a Rainbow Dash stuffed toy waving a rainbow flag; there may also be a sign that says “DON’T FORGET TO BE AWKWARD”. For the park and Argo, just show up! If you want to join us for dinner, please be at Argo by 7 p.m. If it’s 4ish and you’re not sure whether to go to the park or Argo, or if you get to either place and can’t find us, email Rose, who will check regularly for messages. (FOCA members, PM Rose Fox in advance to get their phone number.)
Things you may want to bring: your own homemade name/pronoun buttons or tags, sun protection, drinks and snacks for the park, a blanket and/or cushiony thing to sit on at the park, a craft project to fidget with, a board or card game (preferably more cooperative and/or silly than competitive), cash (preferably not just twenties) for buying snacks from vendors in the park and splitting the check at dinner.
Coordinators will supply: name/pronoun tags and markers, unscented sunscreen.
Expected costs: The park is free! We’ll probably be a big enough group at Argo that you won’t need to buy anything in order to hang out with us, but if you’re able to get a tea or a muffin and support the venue, please do. At dinner you pay for what you order; if we can’t get separate checks, this will be calculated as base price * 1.33 (to cover ~9% NYC tax + ~24% tip). The name/pronoun stickers cost about $2 each to provide, so if you feel like donating to cover the cost of your sticker or someone else’s, that’d be awesome.
Expected attendance: at least four or five people, and the group may get large and/or merrily noisy. Introverts, please feel totally free to drift into and out of the meetup, listen more than you talk, sit nearby and read a book, or whatever else helps you manage your interaction points. Shy folks, if you’d like to strike up a conversation with someone and aren’t sure where to start, a great icebreaker question is “What’s made you happy lately?”.