Science fiction often paints a hopeful picture of our future, or warns where our current mistakes might lead. Steampunk fans pull together an eclectic collection of elements from across time and space to build a reality simultaneously familiar and exotic.
In my travels to conventions I met a diverse spectrum of enthusiasts and the common thread amongst them, steampunk, came in as many variations as those gathered.
But whether you’re decked out from head to toe in gears, goggles, and spats, or just wearing a bowler hat; you’re in, accepted, and welcomed. I love it. Granted we can’t all agree on whether or not Doctor Who is steampunk, and we don’t all pine for steam-powered fairy wings; but differences needn’t spoil our fun.
How many of those gathered feel as comfortable amongst their coworkers and family? How many fit within a stereotype that isolates them from their daily world. Or do they play along with everyone else, just to fit in?
Having grown up with Asperger’s Syndrome, I’m accustomed to feeling uncomfortable amongst ‘normal’ people, although it took until my forties before a diagnosis defined my uniqueness.
Life’s taught me the value of loving people where they are, loving them for what we share; I can’t judge them into being the people I’d like them to be and I shouldn’t want to.