The department had its start-of-year-meet-the-new-students reception. I lasted 15 minutes, which is 5 minutes longer than my modal time. (No offense to anyone.) I don't like crowds of strangers, especially crowds where I am supposed to be talking to somebody, but often I seem to find crowds of acquaintances even harder to take if I don't settle into a regular conversation with someone right away. I think when most other people talk about being painfully shy, they mean the painful part only metaphorically.
As I type this, an e-mail comes in from someone else who was there: "Why did I go to that thing? Do I really want a free beer that bad?"