Beauty in Books Will Never be Hard to Find

April 22, 2012
“ Beauty- the adjustment of all parts proportionally so that one cannot add or subtract or change without impairing the harmony of the whole.” Leon Battista Alberti must have had a wife with self-esteem issues, if he found it necessary to describe it so mathematically. And I would feel the same way that she did, but it started when I was much younger. Granted, it was kindergarten, but it made me have a very weird perspective of people.
I believe you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover.
I thought I finally realized the problem during the summer of third grade. I just started summer camp for the performing arts, and I love it there. I’ve been obsessed with musical theater since I was two. One day, our councilor decided to play a truth game because she thought some of the girls were having issues in the bunk. In this game, we had to tell a truth about everyone in the circle. My closest friend in the bunk said to me “When I first met you, I thought you were a very mean girl because you are pretty, you had sparkly lip- gloss. You looked like a really mean girl.”
I was devastated. I truly believed that this was why I wasn’t making many friends. I still think to do this day that the kids at school judge me based on appearance.
Now, I would wear make up, but I was only in fourth grade. Boys started to notice me. Girls began to ask me questions. But not the kind I was hoping for. They would ask me why I was wearing make up, why I dressed so much more mature. I felt like nothing would work. They still did not want to be my friend. However, they were talking to me. So, I just thought of that as friendship. I settled for an unsatisfying book just because of its pretty pictures.
When sixth grade rolled around, I finally started to make real friends. People were a little more accepting, or, as it seemed in the beginning. But then there was this girl. She would walk around like she was the best thing that happened to the world. She was perfection. She was everything someone wanted to be. Her cover led me to assume that she was a mean girl, but I didn’t take the time to read her story.
I quickly realized what I was doing. I was judging someone. I didn’t know this girl at all. I remembered back to camp, when the girls made false assumptions of me. I thought of how upset I was, because those girls didn’t know who I was, yet they seemed to know. It wasn’t fair to me, so why is it any different for this girl? The truth was, it wasn’t. She’s now my best friend.
I have learned not to judge myself as well as others based on how we look. If you take your time to read a few chapters of a book, you might grow fond of it. If you stare and mock its cover, you may never know what kind of wonderful story it is. And if you had never read any book, you will never find your favorite. Don’t always trust book lists, because who knows who wrote them? Finally, to not be open to different genres is to stay in a corner with the same book all your life. Based on experience, I find this to be true. I believe you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover.

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