Wednesday, October 10, 2012

What is cool?

This photo is either photoshopped really well, or these people are total dimwits.

Umm. Hello! There is an ELEPHANT behind you! An ELEPHANT. Get over looking safari cool and look at the biggest animal on earth standing next to you.

At least they aren't on their cell phones.

I hate technology.

This picture (yes, it is from Jetsetter. I love Jetsetter emails. I just contradicted my previous statement. Ok I lovehate technology) reminds me of when people act too cool. They are trying to act way too cool so by default, they become less cool. Do you know what I mean?

Let me see if I can explain. This scenario, I know, has happened to everyone who breathes:

You are walking down the sidewalk on M street, or in the mall, or airport - basically anywhere that people gather round together - and people look at each other. Not really at each other though. Because if someone makes eye contact with whoever he is looking at, that person (both the looker and the person he is looking at) immediately looks away. Heaven forbid that someone catches you looking at them, or admiring their jacket, or wanting to see what book they are reading.

We feign indifference all the time. Like this: "I am too cool to act like I notice you there, but really I do notice you there, but I'm not going to let you notice that I noticed you." I'm not talking about physical attraction... I'm just talking about everyday interactions with the people you bump into.

But what if instead of feigning indifference, we intentionally don't look away when someone catches us being curious. What if we actually comment on the book they're holding, or their super tight skinny jeans, or their amazingly gorgeous hair. Or even just smile before looking away. (DISCLAIMER: People smile more at you in Texas than they do in DC.) People want to feel good and look good, so why not let them feel that way if you like what you see.

Self-consciousness. Aaack. I hate it. I feel self-conscious when I run in public. Which is basically all the time. Or when I haven't showered after working out and then go to the grocery store. Which is also basically all the time. Or if I haven't shaved my legs in awhile. Which is... nevermind. Most people who act too cool are really just completely over-the-top self-conscious. They are longing for some sort of approval, even if, and sometimes especially if, they are perceived as the coolest person ever. Children are different - they haven't yet learned to be self-consious. And that is why they rock my socks. Same thing with grandmothers.

Not a care in the world except for blowing out those 90th birthday candles.

We should learn from kids and from our grandmothers. The funny thing is that we spend most of our lives in between those two stages. And we spend most of our lives trying to figure out how to not act like a kid and not look like a grandmother. But really, I think they've got things figured out.

From the Book of Cool: Smile more, make eye contact, try (I know that this is so much easier said than done) to be comfortable in your own skin, don't worry about what people think of you, and do fun things that get you away from your norm = go apple-picking.

And hug each other more.

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