When Did I Stop Being Cool?

Chayyei Sarah asks Do you remember the moment you started to feel uncool?

It is a fun question to play with. As I said on her blog I am sure if I ever felt all that cool. I have always been a bit of a wingnut, living closer to the fringes than the middle where the cool people were.

Most of the time I never worried much about what people said or thought about me. I enjoyed and still enjoy being different and having a bit of a warped sense of humor. I still make remarks that can kill conversation. Yes, that is me, the guy who can create an awkward uncomfortable silence.

I like to think that it is because I think faster than most people and that if they could keep up they would smile and understand. But that is more of fantasy than reality. At this point I just accept that some people will consider me to be the king of non-sequiturs.

Part of my comfort level with myself is that I have always been blessed with many friends, so I have never felt like I was so weird that people hated me. Although I would be lying if I said that I haven’t had my share of feeling awkward or left out. When I worked at Ramah in California it is safe to say that for a period of time I was one of the kings of camp. I was cool without trying to be.

But when I worked at Ramah in Canada I was most certainly not. It wasn’t just because I was new there. At times it felt like there were almost cultural differences and it made life a little less fun.. Although the reality is that by the time I was 14 or 15 I really had gotten beyond my concerns about what other people thought, so that Summer in Canada was not such a big deal because I didn’t need any validation.

It is always nice to receive it and it would have been nice to say that I left there with a hundred new friends. I didn’t and I expect that some people probably remember me in a way that I would find less than pleasing, but that is ok.

There are still times when I feel like I am not even close to being cool, but they are few and far between. Age and life experience is a wonderful thing.

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