April 25, 2011
By jarvaz BRONZE, Austin, Texas
jarvaz BRONZE, Austin, Texas
2 articles 0 photos 0 comments

I remember my first day in elementary school. I walk in and see all the other first graders playing with Lego's. I see three pairs of Batman shoes, a Superman shirt, and the rest are Spider man. I am wearing Spider man as well. That was popular around that time. Even as first graders we, as people, wanted to be accepted or “liked” by others.coulddn’t even add two-digit numbers, but we could see who was ‘cool’ and who was not. We had already put each other in social status groups though we barely even knew one another.

Around fifth grade I stopped caring about my social status and just got into having friends that liked me for my personality. This changed during my seventh grade year in middle school. I started seeing that all of the kids with Air Forces and Jordans were socially accepted by most of the school. I was a little skinny black kid that not many people knew. I wanted to be the ‘cool kid’ in the school so bad that I would spend whatever it took to get what they had. So I went out and bought a pair of $150 Jordans that were cool at that time. And of course, as I predicted, I was accepted by the cool kids. It felt great to be important, to feel that others knew I existed.

I was at the top of my game. Then, a new pair of shoes came out about a month later. All of the sudden, the cool kids had different shoes than I did and my social status took a plummet for the rocks. I missed one pair of shoes, and now, no one knew or cared to know me. I was astonished at how fast those ‘friends’ of mine could turn on me over one pair of shoes that I didn’t have. That stopped my cool phase for a while.

Close to the end of seventh grade I looked back on my year and made the assumption that I was unhappy with the way it went because I wasn’t accepted by the cool kids. I started doing extra work and did little odd jobs to get money so that I could be the cool kid again next year.

Eighth grade started and I had made enough money to keep up with the cool kids for a good year and a half. I came to school with the new Jordans that had just come out a week before school. I was instantly accepted as usual. But I noticed that a close friend of the cool kid had on the same shoes as last summer. The cool kid turned his friend down like they had never met in their life. I was shocked to see this because they had been friends for six years. I began to see how being “cool” had taken over people and made them turn against their own friends.

I did not want to take part of it anymore. I stopped buying all the expensive shoes and clothes around the middle of my eighth grade year. I knew I would no longer be accepted anymore, but I did not want to turn out to be a jerk like that to my friends. The cool kids continued to be cool and I went back to my normal life. Now, of course I bought new shoes, just not the ones that where totally in style. I moved on from the middle school madness.

Then up to my high school years. When I stopped caring about the opinions of others or my social status in a school, I did a lot better in my classes than I had ever done. However as humans we have the need to feel accepted or liked by significant people. Once more I started to buy more shoes and clothes and other in style items at that time. I came to school the next day and all the sudden all these people knew me. People that I had never seen in my life greeted me with smiles and handshakes. It felt good but it all seemed… artificial.

The only reason this was all happening was because of a pair of shoes. The smiles where fake the handshakes were out of jealousy and the greetings were for a higher social status. I began to hate it after I realized that once again it was all for show. There is no such thing as cool. How can one be cool if one looks like everybody else? Something I see every day starts to get…”uncool”.

So I came to the conclusion that cool is just a state of thought. What a person finds cool is only cool to them. If people see something they like about your coolness, then it becomes a temporary trend. Next thing you know, what you thought was cool is now a normal thing because everyone else has out worn it. Everyone is just waiting for the next wave of ‘cool’ to come out so they can copy it. The same cycle follows behind it.
I have lived by people’s opinions and let them change who I am. From the items I wore to even the way I acted. But once I got an understanding on what cool really was, I stopped caring about what ‘they’ thought was cool and figured out what ‘I’ knew was cool.

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