DOs from a Newbie Perspective was written for Point Princess by Daniel Yuang.

DOs from a Newbie Perspective

So… after attending the Ann Arbor DO, I was asked to do a guest post from the newbie perspective regarding the #AnnArborDO. I was a bit reluctant because I really don’t have anything to contribute to the community yet, and I’m not a particularly passionate writer. But because I’ve been up way too late on a handful of nights reading these blogs since the DO, I’d figure I might as well put these thoughts into words.

So… what is going through my newbie head? Well… firstly, I’m thinking crap.. I need to change this now because I’m a professional procrastinator and the Seattle Sessions have now come and gone. The next thing is, of course… Taylor Swift. There’s clearly a song for absolutely everything. I’m pretty much the person on the outside, looking in, wondering how the hell I’m ever going to grasp this hobby. It intrigues me. It doesn’t bode well with my lazy personality. I’m more of an eat Oreos for dinner rather than go grocery shopping kind of guy sometimes. But I’m also the kind of guy that will drive 48.1 miles to get good sushi, or try a new burger. The challenge intrigues me. The potential for adventure excites me. It looks like a lot of work, but the rewards appear to be well worth the effort. I sometimes wonder if I spent my entire college career working on this hobby, where I might have ended up.

I sit in these rooms, listening to these people speak quite passionately about various P&M topics. Some of it makes sense. I watch this group of people greet each other like old friends they have not seen in a while. They tell stories of their (mis)adventures, share their traveling tips, and have a genuinely good time in each other’s company.  A lot of it seems like it’s probably fairly common knowledge for the veterans of the trade, so people show up just to meet people.  It feels like a family. They share top secret P&M tips with the caveat that you keep these secrets in the confines of this family. I’m sure some of the people in these rooms wouldn’t share these tips with their actual family members! It feels very exclusive. As I read more and more, some of the things they talked about that initially went right over my head just… click. “Woot!” as a friend would say. It’s a satisfying feeling.

So… what is it like to be the newbie? The beginnings: Here I am, a week after attending the F2B Seattle Sessions, still staying up too late reading blogs, booking another trip, frantically searching through my emails so I can register for the next F2B session and wondering what credit card I need to get next to maximize the value per dollar spent, while hoping that one day I can contribute to the community and be on the other side of this fence instead of just looking in. I think I’ll fit right in with this family.