“Have you ever noticed the ones that seem to throw around the labels and insults are the very same ones who blogged about being excluded in school?”
– Robyn (“There is NO A-LIST”), of Tampatantrum –
I’ve watched Robyn and her friends get very popular over the past few months… and I’ve seen her take more and more crap and criticism because of that popularity. As with Michele, Miz Kitty, Kottke, Zeldman… and any other so-called “A-Lister” that has come by…
I can lend some insight to that.
*screen blurs and squiggles back to 1983*
In high school, when I was transferred to Bushwick H.S., I was placed in the top class because of my grades. This was the same homeroom as the school president, vice-president, jocks, beauty queens (with brains), music majors, drama types…
They were considered “the cool kids”.
Intelligent, good looking, and they ran the school.
Technically, I considered myself “The Outsider”. On the fringe. Able to see both sides of the fence.
But I was new. I had the advantage of getting all my freshman dorkiness out of the way somewhere else… So by association and by default, I became one of the “cool kids” (By most people’s perspective). I related to the jocks, brainiacs, the beauty queens, I hung out with the musicians… I had it going on, baby. :0)
It was all an illusion. A combination of self-esteem and perception.
To the fat chick with glasses in the back, or the skinny nerdy kid with the bad acne, the “cool kids” seemed an elite, snobby pack that were unnaproachable. It was in their insecure minds that they can never be “one of them”. The “nerds” simply had a preconceived notion that they “weren’t good enough”.
They never even tried to approach them. They pre-judged the “cool kids” as snobs, and decided they would never be accepted.
Me? I had no problem talking to “the cool kids”. The cool kids were always nice to me. I also realized that they are just as dorky, and goofy, and had the same problems and insecurities as everyone else.
The difference was social ability, and “the cool kids” were better at concealing their dorkiness.
The “cool kids” also didn’t consider themselves “the cool kids”, or part of some “elite group”. They were popular because they made everyone around them feel good about themselves. They were interesting. They found you interesting. They were active in school, and their names were all over the place.
The “nerds” had such low self-esteem that they billed themselves “nerds” before anyone else did. The walls around them, that kept them from moving about, were built by their own hands. Whatever problems they had were “somebody else’s fault”. (Most likely, the cool kids supposedly “oppressing” them.)
The scorn you see toward the “more popular” bloggers today is a direct reflection of that illusion.
The “popular” people reach out and socialize. The “unpopular” people stay in their little shell, afraid to take a chance.
Everyone is dorky and insecure. Some are better at concealing it than others.
We’ll always be our own “worst enemies”.
We never left high school.
The school bell will never ring….
I’m still “The Outsider”, looking in.
Watching you all.