Yesterday, I committed one of my biggest faux pas yet: joking about death. For background, read ophie's writeup in September 10, 2001. I made a bad joke connecting the topic "E2 is wearing black today" and HTML bgcolors. I'd like to say that it won't happen again, but I'm afraid my definition of "it" may differ from the reader's.
Communities don't seem to want people who can't instinctively figure out the unwritten rules of the community. If common sense were truly common, it would have been documented better. My problem with "being more careful next time" has always been how can I be more careful if I'm effectively blind? I feel like I'm the only person who makes an honest effort to have tact but fails miserably.
E2 is just one web site out of thousands, but these problems have appeared in any community in which I have attempted to take part. The same thing happened to me all through high school: I broke one rule, got the usual "that's inappropriate, and you should already know what inappropriate means" lecture, got suspended, and never broke my perception of that specific rule again. A month later it was something else. Break one rule, face the consequences, never break that rule again, break another rule, rinse and repeat. The problem I've seen in myself is that what I learn from mistakes is too narrow and literal (e.g. "don't make jokes connecting mourning traditions to their technical implementations"); when I try to compensate by broadening my perception of the rule a bit (to "don't tell any jokes at all when an obituary is in News for Noders; better yet, just shut up"), people who do not understand my autistic difficulty with common sense become somewhat sarcastic towards me. (I have Asperger's syndrome, a mild form of autism.) I have the support of SEF, SEF's daughter evilrooster, and drummergrrl.
Even mentioning Nintendo's Yoshi's Cookie could potentially offend. (The code name for the game during development was "Hermetica".)
(update 18:31) I have decided to say nothing about the recent World Trade Center terrorism.