Although there are many things I don’t envy about the Regency, I do wish there was more formality these days. The thing is, I can be painfully shy in social situations, but if there was a proscribed method of behavior I would be a lot more comfortable.

Last night, we celebrated my husband’s 40th birthday. A group of his friends gathered at a restaurant and helped devour an entire roasted pig (and pictures are forthcoming, but I haven’t gotten them yet–I forgot my own camera, duh.). Of course, there were friends of his–from work, mostly–who I didn’t know, and it felt awkward, the whole going up and introducing myself thing, then the idle chit-chat, then the standing around and stuff. I was wishing some dowager would sail in out of nowhere and command Mr. So-and-So to dance with me or something, so I would have something to do. And if it were a lord? Woo-hoo, let the muslin dampen!

My shyness is one of the reasons, ironically enough, I thrived so well in event planning; I had a purpose, I knew why I was there, which made me totally comfortable. Maybe that’s why some of our shy heroines don’t do so badly after all in the ball room: They know they are there to find a husband, and either they are okay with that (usually not), or they are equally determined NOT to find a husband. Either way, they have a goal, a method of behavior that is proscribed and understood, and everyone else there knows their role, too.

How about you? Are you shy in social situations? Or do you wish you were making your come-out at a ball given in your honor, with all eyes upon you?

PS: This pic is of a real wallflower, although it doesn’t appear anywhere near a wall. Go figure.