Take a moment to think of some other Sherlockians that you talk with on a regular basis: scion members, online messages, emails, phone calls, etc. Are these folks you would have crossed paths with if it weren't for the shared interest in Sherlock Holmes? Probably not, and I'm going to bet that they your life is better for them. How many times have they made you laugh, got you to view something through a different lens, or helped you to enjoy an afternoon, evening, or weekend?
Yeah, fellow Sherlockians are pretty great.
And there are so many different kinds of us! Different careers, ages, outlooks, you name it, there's a Sherlockian to fit it. Sure, many Sherlockians are old, white men. (I'm getting pretty close to that myself) And a lot of those old, white men are absolute delights to spend time with. And look at the online world of Sherlockiana: the times, they are a changing. The new takes on Sherlockiana, creative outlets for canonical thought, and some flat-out craziness will definitely keep us from getting stale!
I have spent the last six months talking with so many different types of Sherlockians and reading their thoughts on our shared interest for an upcoming book project, and I can't help but love this group of folks. Everyone brings something unique to a Sherlockian discussion, whether you've reread the Canon annually for decades or you're having your first Twitter exchange with another Sherlockian.
But man, the meetings and events are where the real magic happens! I'm active in three scions in St. Louis, and I always walk away from them happy I spent time with the people in the room. In fact, I start to feel a little twitchy if I go too long without attending a meeting (Holmes wasn't the only one with an addiction, apparently).
And the events? If someone cares enough to travel, spend the money, and spend a weekend talking about a detective from 130 years ago, they are my kind of people! Holmes in the Heartland (shameless plug: register for 2020 HERE), Holmes, Doyle & Friends, and the Norwegian Explorers of Minnesota triennial conference are three conferences I've been lucky enough to attend, and there are plenty more that are on my bucket list (221B Con, Scintillation of Scions, Left Coast Sherlockian Symposium, etc.).
And the granddaddy of them all: the Baker Street Irregulars' birthday weekend in January. I've never gone before because it's such a financial commitment, and I knew that I would feel like I missed out on something if I went to the weekend but not the dinner. So I've abstained until I could do it all.
And this year I will.
Yesterday, I received an invitation to the BSI dinner, along with information about all of the other Sherlockian events happening in New York in January. Even though I can't do it all ("Someday, I will get to an Adventuresses dinner," he said, staring longingly into the distance), I can't begin to tell you how excited I am to spend another weekend with Sherlockians! Bookstores, dinners, lunches, talks, drinks (and drinks and drinks) with people who love the Canon as much, if not more than I do!
Sherlockians are good people. And spending time with Sherlockians is time well spent.