On Weirdness

 

Its hard to find an image that can truly encompass what it means to be weird, but at least that one is entertaining.

Yesterday I went to Bosu Ball class at my gym. Today, I’m sore. They put you on this stability ball and make you jump around and almost twist your ankle a gazillion times, and then you can’t move the next day. The instructor for the class was this cute little blonde girl,  like 19 or 20, and I heard her say to this other girl after class that she really “loved Iggy.” For the splitest of seconds I thought she meant Iggy Pop, and for the splitest of seconds I was really, really pleasantly surprised. I forgot there was a top-40 pop singer out now named Iggy too. I guess it was because I read this book over the summer about the punk scene in the 70s and 80s so the Stooges have more top-of-mind awareness for me.

How totally fucking cool would it have been if this cute, little blond girl who is probably in a sorority and does squats like its nobody’s business also loved Iggy Pop?  I don’t even like The Stooges that much, I just really love it when people transcend the boxes I have a tendency to put them in.

Unfortunately, she didn’t.

I have hipster boxes, manic pixie dream girl/guy boxes,  dumb dude/dudettebro boxes,  smart dude/dudettebro boxes, nerd boxes, punk boxes, transient loser boxes, etc, and rarely does anyone ever surprise me anymore. A lot of the people in these boxes will self-identify as weird. However, most of these people have all the same interest and hobbies you would expect from someone in their respective box, which is not weird. Like, if you’re in a manic pixie dream girl box and you love cat picture books, ceramic figurines and indie rock you’re not fucking weird, you’re predictable. If you wear doc martens when it’s 100 degrees out and collect vintage records, you’re also predictable.

The Point Is: People tend to adopt the style and hobbies/activities of the (counter) culture they want to be associated with. That is not weird. In my experience, the people that are truly, organically weird you might box in as a standard nerd or a dude/dudette bro. You’d never be able to pick them out in a crowd. And they definitely don’t fit in any counter culture box, mainly because those boxes are all about the need to “belong.”  True weird is not about belonging at all, or making a statement, or being perceived in a certain way. True weird has no agenda.

For instance, hands down the weirdest person I’ve ever met is my best friend MattyV. He; obsessively follows entertainment award shows, fantasy football, and Disney World, is startlingly devoid of shame, screeches the hell out of Janis Joplin at Karaoke, and he goes to protests even when he doesn’t know what people are protesting because he likes big groups of people and solidarity.  That description does no justice to the true extent of his weirdness, but the best thing about it is you would never guess by looking at him. His weirdness is organic, hence it doesn’t need to be broadcasted.

Meanwhile manufactured weirdness exists solely to be broadcasted, and is generally not weird at all. Like Bronies. Do you think that all of these dudes discovered a tremendous passion for My Little Pony independently, unaffected by outside influence?  That would be organically weird. However, I’m willing to bet they wanted to be passionate about something, wanted to feel like a part of something, and someone they looked up to was passionate about My Little Pony. Hence, they are now full-blown Bronie, too. To me, thats how counter-culture works. Is that narrow? Bronies aren’t weird, they’re just followers who needed to fill their time, and, I guess, don’t like sports.

No But The Real Point Is: I don’t think that what most people associate as “weird,” is really that weird. What really makes someone weird is that they don’t fit into any box, cliche, or stereotype. But because society is so concerned about fitting in and not standing out, most people are content to find the box they like best and live in it. This is why people are so dull.

Also, I am a misanthrope.

 

 

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