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Why I Decided Being Cool Was Really Not Cool

It seemed like, when I was young, being cool was everything. In high school in America, acceptance is everything. I am sure that is the same in any school situation around the world. School is a proving ground where one grows, and is exposed for what they are in an intellectual hierarchy. School is a very brutal battleground where suicides are created, and lives are scarred and maimed. "Cool" is the stream of acceptability that flows through and protects some kids through the ravages of the judgments of other outsider kids, and gives them the power of distinction and political high ground to define who belongs and who does not. Remember, like a gang, it is not enough to just look the part. When I was in high school, I was a cool kid. I looked the part. There was parties at my house that all the kids would come to and drink under age. I looked the part, we provided something the other kids wanted, and I had a beautiful girlfriend. I was an artist and a musician, so I did my work that way too. Cool really starts out as vanity, but then it is received by the other, and comes back to you in an augmented form that you can use or not.

There was always something fishy about being cool to me. I liked it. I enjoyed it. It was like you were constantly winning a game or something, but at the same time, the validation was empty. It was like "the cool group" simply had the goal of being "the cool group". That is why it existed. Its purpose was to gain acceptance of the uncool masses by force, or envy, by politics and style. At some point one has to ask the question, "Am I original, or am I just being part of a group with the banner "original"? When you ask that question and you think about it for a long time, you realize that being "original" is very very uncool. Cool people live by a maxim for the most part: If another cool kid says its cool, then, it must be cool. Very few cool kids are doing anything creative that nobody else is doing that does not actually fit within the confines of the group. They may make tiny leaps, but there wont be many profound discoveries, or group changing revelations. Now, I know trends come and go, and cool kids adopt them and change in that way, but those trends are usually started by bands, and iconic super stars who do crazy ridiculous things to gain people's attention. Then the masses water it down a bit, and become it because they are sure that somebody else has done it so they can pass the accountability on within themselves.

What I wanted to say, for the core of this essay, was why I dumped this whole charade. After I was a cool follower for a while, I decided it was more important to be original lead. I became a militant individualist. I really think it goes in stages for everybody. First there is the desire to fit into an original group, then there is the desire to become original and start your own group. Then at that point, if you become successful, then you are stuck! You become stuck in a bubble that is doing this or that, and you are not individual. You are attached to group. It may be a group following your lead, but you are tied to it in a give and take. So there is an argument here, if you are the innovator for the group, are you still a militant individual, or have you just become part of a group, who tries to create their own group for whatever reason?

Let me get on here, at some point I decided that I did not want to be recognized as cool anymore. When I bought my truck, I did not raise it up 5 inches and put 35" tires on it like a cool kid would do. I raised it 3 inches and put 31 inch tires. Now, when I buy my shoes, I do not buy Etnies, or Vans, Puma or Adidas. I buy Nike. I buy Nike because I understand that everybody has Nike, all over the world. I decided what was really cool, was understanding what cool was, and deciding not to be it. Ultimately, unless you are an innovator, than being cool is essentially a subset of followers. They are the group that packages subversive ideals, and gives them a look. You cool kids should watch your step, because one who knows how to be cool and rejects it, is not the same as one who never knew. And to all you pithy traditionalists who laugh, and say to yourselves,"It's called growing up.", you are the biggest followers of all. Religion is just the cool group that became famous in history. The whole point of this essay comes down to this: What is most important is that which you carry inside of you beyond choice, that is also inside every human on the planet beyond choice. The way you appear is not as important as what is fundamental to the existence of men. Again, pithy traditionalists, you never knew, you only pretend that you do with narratives. So do not beat your chest when what I describe seems like your "practicality". What you learn is that individuality can be sought in universality, because it is actually very common to try to be individual. What you learn is that trying to be the same, as the largest group possible, puts you in the best position possible to lead indirectly. You become something great without thinking, you just become natural. In that nature your desire is good, and you become original in universality. This is the real truth behind it all, and, having realized it you get a good idea of the emptiness of being a follower of originality. The innovators of originality are the creative gems, I am just talking about the followers. Instead of getting caught in the cycle of looking to be fed the new creative energy, or looking to feed the new creative energy, the pure individual looks to satisfy an individual curiosity. He is free to make radical changes, or drone out. He is free to stop what he is doing, or continue to a fever pitch. He does not worry about ridicule, or acceptance. One thing I think is funny about true originality is that you are not always successful! Sometimes you look like an idiot because you become wrapped up in your own subjectivity and go off on crazy tangents. I am not saying one should drive toward obscurity, because that really is the cheap way to gain individuality. I am saying that you have to take risks. If you do not risk, you will not fail, or have success, except by chance.


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