Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The X Factor

The question that's been on my mind lately is, "What makes someone cool?"
I know I'm not.  But I can't figure out why.  What part of my life is so out of line with the trend... that I will never ever be cool.
I know cool people.  But I can't find the common thread that weaves through each of their hip lives.
I thought there's gotta be a list.  A standard.  A path to achieve coolness.  Okay.  It's becoming too obvious I'm uncool.
Hmmm.  How to go about this.
People who are cool dress a certain way.  They wear certain colors in a certain way.  They layer.  They have winter coats that keep them warm even when they aren't buttoned.  They can wear hats or bandanas and not look like they are going to work outside.  They don't wear what's in the magazines or store windows... but they look so put together.
I tried applying some of these fashion items to my own life.  Scarves seem to be big so I started wearing them.  But when tied atop my chesties... I look like I have a thick woven noose around my neck.  Or a neck brace.  Not cool, Patsmo.  Both cool boys and cool girls wear skinny jeans.  And never fidget with them.  When I try to be cool and wear skinnies I am hiking them up all day and twisting the bottoms so the seams are straight.  What am I missing?  I think my skinny jeans know I am not cool and don't want to be seen with me.

Picture to demonstrate I can wear the clothes cool people wear and still.... miss:

Julie, Andi, Me
 Notice.  Me and Julie are both wearing short pants windsuits.  But Julie looks cool in hers. And I look middle-aged.  Is it the sunglasses?  She's wearing hers... I have mine fastened handily to my zipper.  Is it the color schemes? Same outfit.  Different results.  

I've thought maybe it's the gadgets.  Cool people have cool gadgets.  That makes sense.  And they are so fluid with them.  Our 2 year contract was up and when we went to renew we got phone upgrades.  I had to part with my flip phone (they aren't going to provide service to them anymore.)  It was rough.  They gave us free iPhones.  I'm not kidding.  It's the iPhone 4.  So it's two stages ago... but still.  Ken brought it home and i was like "Wuz UP!  I'm cool!  I've got an iPhone!"  And then I tried using it.  And I'm still not cool.  Because I don't know when it's ringing, or when I called someone, or when I've hung up (or not hung up), or how to change the background picture.  The texting... is supposed to be easier.  But I think only cool people get it.  I think Apple (PERIOD) is for cool people.  I should just stick with Dell and flip phones.  It's where I am comfortable.

Is it being smart?  Knowing a lot?  Reading?  The music you listen to?  Playing guitar?  Liking Star Wars or The Hobbit?  Liking Sex and the City?  Is it the people you know?  Is it the ability to comfortably tell a good joke?

I'm puzzled.  Because at some point your coolness can turn... on you.  Like you like Star Wars and that's cool.  (Right?)  And then you like it a lot and get all the movies and action figures and hang posters in your dining, living, and bed rooms.  You only wear Star Wars clothing and you redo your house to look like the Death Star.  Suddenly, you're not cool.  You're weird.
But weird people can be cool.
And it used to be dorky to read but now it's cool to read.  And I've always read but I never evolved from dorky to cool.  How did I miss the wave?

I have one really cool friend.  She just emanates coolness.  I don't know why she likes being my friend.  Could just be our kids are the same age.  But she was over and saw a picture of John Lennon hanging in Joey's room.  She asked if I was a hippie or a flower child.  I told her no.  Even though in my head I was like, "Oooo!  Am I?  They're cool?!  Maybe I am!  Maybe having that picture makes me cool?"  
She also dresses her kids in cool clothes.  Her son wears shirts that have skulls and guitars and cool phrases on them.  And Kole wears stripes.  Or a shirt with a multi-colored train.  When I tell her how cool she dresses her kids she assures me that I can go to the store and buy the same clothes.  *clears throat* Refer to above picture.  Just doesn't work.

In closing, my sister Victoria, claims that during your school years everyone is popular at least one grade.  I think that was 5th grade for me.  I remember the popular girls talking to me... but I said no when they invited me to a birthday party at the South Park Ice Skating Rink.  Could have been the wrong move.

So, I'm still stumped.  It's something to do with attitude.  And confidence.  But I've got mad pat-titude and enough confidence to send some to the poor kids in Africa.  But I consistently fall short of the cool bar.

What is it?  What is it that makes someone cool?


Chris Loves Julia said...

I think the best way to be cool is to be so confident in your skin you don't care about being cool.

Patty said...

@ Chris Loves Julia: Said a cool person. Could it be you already know you're cool and therefore don't think about it?
Coolness on a scale stops after highschool... but I still have met ultra-cool people lately.

Patty said...

I think it bubbles within too.

Spencer, Jen, Zoe, and Emrie said...

This is the story of my life! Haha I finally just had to decide that I don't care if I'm cool. I'm almost positive that it's never going to happen, so I just don't think about it. I have had the exact same thoughts on a lot of things. I seriously cannot pull off the scarf thing. My mom even looks awesome in a scarf and I look.... Weird. Also, I would pick a sci-fi or superhero movie over a chick flick any day.... Which according to some people i know means that I'm weird. I don't think I'll ever know what makes a person cool. I don't have any answers for you, but hopefully it helps to know that you're not alone. Hahaha

Cinderella, the A-Train and Our Little Caboose said...

You are very cool to me!