My views on Acting Cool and Egoism

I’ve been thinking lately.

Often, in the MRTs/buses, I’ve seen people wearing these “hip” faded jeans, plug an MP3 into their years, MUST BE-bought branded earphones cos the quality in given ones suck, T-shirts with splattered designs all over, Shoes over the 100 dollar range/branded slippers. These in our common opinion are usually broadly defined as “posers”.

I think the main reason why people call them “posers” is because they show off, act cool (and this has nothing to do with Carlito, the WWE superstar), try to be fashionable. I don’t see why we should call specific people “posers” and “extra” and “act cool” though. This is mostly because much of what we say, what we wear and what we do actually have similiar purpose. MSN nicknames for example, carry their own purpose which perhaps may just be a bid to gain popularity. In case PLC ’06 wants to re-read, (I’ve deleted the rest), putting PLC 06 is an attempt to show that you are united. Even parts of my nickname suggest a part of me trying to “blend in”.

Perhaps I may be mistaken in some of these, but the point is still made. Why do we try to “blend in” when we know it isn’t necessary? This comes about especially in our clothing. Seriously speaking, I’d wear home clothing to a movie outing ANY DAY, if not for the “coolness” of wearing some branded clothing. In fact I notice I don’t because I think wearing home clothes would show that you’re queer, and perhaps cool. Aesthetics are overvalued in today’s society in my opinion. Its the exact same reason why Apple iPods sold better than Zen Micro in the past. Most people WANT and NEED to be cool, no matter how unclear/unintentional their intentions might be.

Recently before my trip to EDB, I was reading this Physics notes (yes mugging). When the bus went past the HCJC bus stop, some College seniors went up and I immediately kept my Physics notes in my bag. Its like this impression you get that “OMG THESE PEOPLE ARE GONNA THINK I’M A MUGGER” and which forces you to keep your notes. I was initially thinking “Heck lah I’m not gonna see these people ever again” when I got on the bus and was greeted with the sight of quite a number of people whom you would probably never meet again (well expected of 174), but when you do meet people you might meet again/know, you get this impression that you must keep to the trend, low socks, low bag, so on just to gather popular opinion. You start to think that wearing high socks and acting like a “nerd” makes you unpopular, perhaps like other friends whom you know of.

I’m sure all of us prescribe to this “solutiontogetyoupopularity”. Its only how much you do it, and how obvious it is. Many people get called posers/extra/ACBC/act cool cos they outwardly show their “actcooling”. But what the heck, I’ll be straight to the point and say these “critics” are hypocrites. Doesn’t everyone of us do so too, albeit in a smaller way? Too much emphasis has been placed on the “coolness” of everything that the actual VALUE of something is compromised. I mean, how many people wear home clothes to bowl/cycle with friends/watch movies (which might be more comfortable than tight jeans)? Who actually is proud of using cheap plastic spectacles (cheap and still working)? Anyone who likes wearing his cheap pair of shoes with holes (inexpensive, doesn’t make you lose so much protection on the foot)? I did for my Scout Shoes, but on reflection I think that was my desire to show that I didn’t care about fashion, another way of “acting cool”. The point is, everyone is trying to show he is unique (or that he fits into the society), but somehow this “uniqueness” doesn’t seem “unique” enough to me.

To be exact, I think the “acting cool” bit is very tied in with our egoism. Yes, we do have many motives for “acting cool”; its what we show that makes people know what we are. I’ve read blogs like RetardPatrol, and I don’t really agree with their rudeness, but they do make a point. No language/behaviour in this world is more valuable than the proper one. That is why I’ve narrowed my nickname down from a queer design (insider and so) to (complacency.) I don’t intend to change it much further, though I now believe the best/most useful MSN nickname is your real name.

I used to despise rich people. Though I can’t say I’m poor (I do come from a double-income family with many many computers and 2 cars), the practices I do hate which run wild in the “rich adolescent world” are branded goods and the whole idea of “presents”. I’ve rarely given a person a birthday present. Not because I’m stingy or poor, but because I see people complaining “Oh, I’ve spent so much money on everyone’s birthday present this month! ahh burnt a hole in my pocket ETC.”, which to me is a blatant show of “hey, I’ve bought a present for you, you’d BETTER appreciate it cos I’ve spent so much money” (i.e. gaining popularity through presents). I’d rather say a sincere “Happy Birthday!” rather than go gaga over how much I’m spending cos of friends. As for branded goods, why spend a large amount on goods with the same quality/ poorer quality than what we can buy at other places? I’m starting to dislike pirated goods too. Why do people go to such extents for the BRAND? Is subscribing to some particular company a FASHION TREND?

Some people find pride in “not acting cool”, perhaps due to their egoism again. I once did (used to wear scout shoes instead of branded ones though I did have branded ones), but now I think it doesn’t matter. Be your true self (and what I mean by true isn’t true by going out and having a shopping spree, unless you really think coolness dominates your life) and live life with satisfaction, like I’m doing now.

I’d like to add the “mugging” issue in too. If you really do something, why not have the confidence to admit it? Now I say I mug, but not for long periods. Saying that you don’t mug only shows that you “are so cool, omg this guy can don’t study and get godlike results wah lau eh” Admitting that you “mug” only shows that you are truthful and responsible for your actions. To avoid being untrue to myself, I’ve changed my blogging style drastically from a “sms-language” kind of blog to a formal blog which I feel truly expresses what I think.

Looking at Simon Cowell. Maybe he’s the judge that everyone dislikes. We should instead look at it another way. Sometimes I DO agree with what he says (like when he surprisingly says ‘no’ to a person going for auditions). The good thing about him is that he does say what he feels, and isn’t a “popularity judge” who goes “wow if I don’t say this guy gets through I’ll get screwed upside down”.

As for now, I see no reason why I should conform to this trend. So what if I don’t get more popular with friends? So what if I hear things behind my back about how “uncool” I am? I’d rather be true to myself, and be a happy/satisfied person, than fall into this abyss of showing off to be more popular (and I can name many who are deep within this pit).

Just something I had to get off my mind (it still is in my mind though), hope you all can comment on it. Thanks for enduring such a long and rather disjointed entry.

One for all. All for one. Venturez’ 06

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