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Thursday, April 3, 2008

Thinking about "Popularity"

I'm currently reading "Nineteen Minutes". The book is about a high school shooting, thats a VERY brief over view. I took a break this morning while Parker was napping and read a few pages. I then really started to think about it. I remember shortly after the massacre happened at Columbine. The school I was in then had bomb threats atleast once a week. I remember there being a "false" hit list surfacing, my name was on that list. I was called into the Principals office over that matter.
In the book, what it boils down to is popularity. What kids do to make themselves part of the "in" crowd and how the people who aren't in it might feel. I grew up going to several schools- I didn't have a choice but to be an easy going, laid back, care free, un-shy kind of person. If I wasn't that way, I wouldn't have had any "friends". I was the new kid frequently. (I went to different schools in K, 1-2, 3-5, 6- half of 7th, remaining 7th grade-9, 10- half 11th, remaining half of 11th, half Sr year {graduated early}, 8 schools total?)But, it also hardened me. I have a hard time letting people get close to me. I try to find ways to push people away, my close friends know this, they are the ones who have pointed it out.
Here's an exert from the book (the shooters thoughts), that made me think:
"Ask a random kid today if she wants to be popular and she'll tell you no, even if the truth is that if she was in a desert dying of thirst and had the choice between a glass of water and instant popularity, she'd probably choose the latter. ... To be truely popular, it has to look like it's something you are, when in reality, it's whaht you make yourself.
I wonder if anyone works any harder at anything than kids do at being popular. I mean, even airtraffic controllers and US presidents take vacations, but look at your average high school student, and you'll see someone who's putting in time twenty-four hours a day, for the entire length of the school year.
So how do you crack the inner sanctum? Well, here's the catch: it's not up to you. What's important is what everyone else thinks of how you dress, what you eat for lunch, what shows you TiVo, what music is on your iPod.
I've always sort of wondered, though: if everyone else's opinion is what matters, then do you ever really have one of your own?"
I was one of those people the shooter wouldn't have liked, I probably would have been mean to him. I probably would have been one that shunned him b/c he was different. (by half of 11th and 12th grade, I had seemed to change and wasn't so much like that) I would have been shot, that freaks me out. I wore ONLY Express. I dressed in mainly skirts. My hair was always fixed, I never left the house w/o makeup. I went tanning alot. I was a blonde. I know there were kids I was mean to. And, I'm not proud of it now. I made a girl cry for touching my locker. I was horrid.
I'm here to tell you that the popular people didn't walk away w/o issues. Go back and read my old posts... I will see if I can scan in a picture of me in the 'olden' days so you can see me. I don't think I look the same.

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