Outside Looking In

Things that don't belong anywhere else. (Check first).

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Enigma90825
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Outside Looking In

Postby Enigma90825 » Thu Jan 17, 2008 9:58 pm UTC

So, I was talking with one of my "friends" today and it got interesting. We had just gone through a thing where we almost went out but ended up not doing so. Basically that if I want a girlfriend I need to make the girl feel special and all this stuff, but thats not entirely what this is about (although if you have any comments/advice on that, feel free) It ended with her saying that I was too cynical and acted as an "outsider looking in" on the whole high school life, and the thing that's worrying me is that I know she's right.

I just look at some of the things people do and see no point in them so I don't do them and I'm confused by it.

So, my question. Does anybody else feel this way about their social life? Is it a bad thing? Should you try to change it, and if so, how?
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby aleflamedyud » Thu Jan 17, 2008 10:07 pm UTC

I used to feel that way. It's called "being intelligent while in high school".
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby KevorkianKat » Thu Jan 17, 2008 10:26 pm UTC

I get the impression she wants you to act "normal" and not so high class. You can choose to adapt for this person or not. It could be that you're just not clicking on an intellectual level, which isn't something you're likely to change unless you get brain damage or she she stops acting like a school girl :p

Edit: There's a lot of people in the world, try to find someone more compatible, but in the meantime, see if she wants to be friends with benefits ;)

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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby VoteBob » Thu Jan 17, 2008 10:35 pm UTC

I've felt this way my entire life. I could easily go and do the things other people do or act like they act or value the same things they value but it would just never feel natural to me. I lack the ability to "fake it" for the sake of appeasing the masses.

This can be good and bad. It's good because people will call you things like "honest" and "bold" and "original" and pretty boys and pretty girls will think you're interesting and want to kiss you sometimes. Also, you'll probably be a whole lot happier with yourself than a lot of other people who just go with the flow.

It's bad because when you just have to do something dumb that does not go with your personality (i.e. work in retail, or at all with the general public) it's near impossible to suck it up and kiss ass. Also people will call you things like "weird" and "bitter" and "difficult" and maybe not want to kiss you.

Really it just comes down to what is more important to you. Being yourself and associating with people who respect that, or fitting in and getting along with the majority of the population.
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby TheTankengine » Thu Jan 17, 2008 10:38 pm UTC

You should have taken that as a compliment.

Who the hell wants to be intimately familiar with the dynamics of your fellow high school students? Everybody is going to be different in just a few years anyway. Coincidentally, that's when you get to decide what actually matters to you and have the ability to put that in your life.

As for advice on the chica: I can only tell you what has worked for me. Cook her a good meal (or at least try) and be genuine. If you don't know how to cook, both of you get in there and give it a go. It's a bonding experience and women tend to respond very well if you are giving an honest effort to make something for her. If that's not up your alley, share something that you are interested in. Even if she doesn't like whatever it is that you do, she will more than likely appreciate that you tried something original, rather than following the lame go-out-to-dinner-and-a-movie trend.
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby Quadropus » Thu Jan 17, 2008 10:46 pm UTC

edit: damn, ninja'd ^ You speak the truth... [referring to VoteBob]
I (and probably many other people on this forum) can see what you mean, and it happens to me as well. I do not see the point in all this 'cool' stuff where people just go out and get stupidly drunk in town. The same applies with all my so called friends who are obsessed with how they look and their clothes.
(Though I did manage to take some bitch down a peg or two by telling her she looked like a gypsy....)

My advice?
Learn to deal with it, people will not change and they will always go alone with the masses. If you don't fit their description of normal you will probably be labeled weird or a freak.
But don't worry... You get used to it after a while.

It is also quite fun mocking people like that to their faces.
e.g. We [being my actual friends now and I] spend out physics lessons [how clichéd] mocking one of the 'popular' and 'cool' kids. This usually consists of ripping into his clothes and generally deflating his ego. It gets fun being a geek after a while.
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby Masuri » Thu Jan 17, 2008 10:52 pm UTC

How about those of us on the inside, screaming to get out? ;)

I think the most important part of life is to just treat people like people. Don't be the asshole that mocks people for their clothes - even if they do it to you. Don't sneer at the losers, don't fawn on the popular kids, don't cringe from the bad crowd. If you're friendly to everybody and don't play those bullshit games, life is sweeter.

I was never normal, but I had a ton of friends because everyone knew where they stood with me. The people who never appreciated that in high school figured it out in college - and if they didn't, it's their loss.

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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby jerome_bc » Thu Jan 17, 2008 10:54 pm UTC

Here is an interesting reading on a similar subject. Although I'm not sure it quite applies to you because you did not mention that you were a nerd, it still is interesting and is a good try at explaining how popularity in high schools work.

In my opinion, you should stay as you are and try to find somebody else. However, as VoteBob said, you have to decide for yourself what is more important to you. I also agree with what Masuri said.

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Enigma90825
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby Enigma90825 » Thu Jan 17, 2008 11:11 pm UTC

You have no idea how refreshing reading all your responses was.

KevorkianKat wrote:Edit: There's a lot of people in the world, try to find someone more compatible, but in the meantime, see if she wants to be friends with benefits ;)


Yeah, we did that but then I got so sick of it. I'm not exactly worried about finding people to hook up with. :lol:

VoteBob wrote:Also, you'll probably be a whole lot happier with yourself than a lot of other people who just go with the flow.

That was her "life motto!"

Yeah I really didn't feel that bad about it, because I have a couple other friends who are like this, but I don't click with them on the level I'd like to (we're friends, but not uber close.) There aren't exactly a whole bunch of geeks around where I am, I'm hoping college will resolve that issue soon!

TheTankengine wrote:You should have taken that as a compliment.


I said that I acted the way I do in part to keep people who "go with the flow" away, because a feeling of hate has been festering towards them for a while now. I, myself, think that I'm fine with what I'm doing and was just hoping I wasn't being completely arrogant in thinking they're crazy... I don't try to impose my way of thinking on them, so they shouldn't do it to me.
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby Berengal » Thu Jan 17, 2008 11:37 pm UTC

I've been an outsider to the most popular society (the one called "normal" or "the cool gang" or whatever) all my life, and while it does feel good to know that I'm better than these people*, sometimes it feels damned good to be on the inside as well. I've done that a couple of time with "the cool gang" while drunk at parties, but most of the time it's with another "society" (whose members may or may not also be part of the "norm"). This is one of the reasons I joined the fora.

*I've got no reason to doubt that I am, and every reason not to. For one, it would make me feel bad about myself instead of feeling superior without any consequences (putting "the cool gang" down has no consequences, as they're perfectly able to circle-jerk eachother back into whatever coolness-orgasm they usually experience).
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby Masuri » Thu Jan 17, 2008 11:58 pm UTC

Berengal wrote:I've been an outsider to the most popular society (the one called "normal" or "the cool gang" or whatever) all my life, and while it does feel good to know that I'm better than these people*, sometimes it feels damned good to be on the inside as well. I've done that a couple of time with "the cool gang" while drunk at parties, but most of the time it's with another "society" (whose members may or may not also be part of the "norm"). This is one of the reasons I joined the fora.

*I've got no reason to doubt that I am, and every reason not to. For one, it would make me feel bad about myself instead of feeling superior without any consequences (putting "the cool gang" down has no consequences, as they're perfectly able to circle-jerk eachother back into whatever coolness-orgasm they usually experience).

Wow. That's amazingly toxic. You can't feel good about yourself without feeling bad about them?

You know who else thought they were better than everyone else? ;)

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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby sethicus » Fri Jan 18, 2008 12:03 am UTC

All through highschool I dated, at different times, three older girls who were in college. I just couldn't make myself think on the level of a 15-18 year old girl. I was one of those guys that's friends with everyone. I partied with the cool crowd, but I also took all AP classes. Class was the only time I really felt a connection with any people, because while getting drunk and doing stupid things was fun, and all, it didn't force me to use my noggin.

I'm from a slightly-larger-than-small town, and and the rampant levels of stupidity still amaze me. so don't feel weird that you look in from the outside, because in a few years time, all those immature little tards are going to wish they had the wherewithal to have matured a little bit before they hit the big show.
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby Berengal » Fri Jan 18, 2008 12:47 am UTC

Masuri wrote:
Berengal wrote:I've been an outsider to the most popular society (the one called "normal" or "the cool gang" or whatever) all my life, and while it does feel good to know that I'm better than these people*, sometimes it feels damned good to be on the inside as well. I've done that a couple of time with "the cool gang" while drunk at parties, but most of the time it's with another "society" (whose members may or may not also be part of the "norm"). This is one of the reasons I joined the fora.

*I've got no reason to doubt that I am, and every reason not to. For one, it would make me feel bad about myself instead of feeling superior without any consequences (putting "the cool gang" down has no consequences, as they're perfectly able to circle-jerk eachother back into whatever coolness-orgasm they usually experience).

Wow. That's amazingly toxic. You can't feel good about yourself without feeling bad about them?

You know who else thought they were better than everyone else? ;)

Only some people in particular. "If I'm not better than a bunch of douchbags, then I must be pretty bad indeed." vs "At least I'm better than that bunch of douchebags.". The only alternative is to not think about it, which in some cases isn't an alternative after all.
Oh, and I wasn't utterly serious in that footnote either.
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby Alibaba » Fri Jan 18, 2008 4:13 am UTC

I can definitely relate with you on this.

I've always felt a little distant with high-schoolers... I think a lot of them are narrow-minded and don't look ahead. I've always removed myself from the stereotypical crowd. For a while this made me feel really alone because I felt like I had no one to really relate with. I was worried I wouldn't be to meet anyone that I could really connect with and high school would be a massive waste that I would forget about later.

Then I met a girl and we became really good friends. I felt it was an accomplishment to find at least one person that I could connect with. I ended up connecting with her so much that I told her how I felt, and we've been dating ever since. She's the kind of person I can talk to about a wide spectrum of things (religion and politics, whoo...) and still be an idiot without worrying about it.

I feel that even if people don't really see things the way I do, that doesn't mean that I can't enjoy who they are. I know they will be the typical high-schooler sometimes, but I just put myself out there for people to see and deal with. The people see who I am and like it interact with me. As a result, I connect with as many people as possible, from the jocks to the nerds to the weird kids... I just love the experience of people.

What can I say to you?

Be patient. You might think you're alone, but there are other people out there.

There may not be someone as intelligent as you, as awesome as you, etc., but there will always be cool people for you to interact with. Seek them.

Life is precious. Your experiences are what you make them. Don't waste time feeling alone, put yourself out there and take life by the horns.

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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby Bobber » Fri Jan 18, 2008 4:55 am UTC

I have it this way too.

I've never really worried that much about it, but it might be because I'm not affected as hard as you are.
I have a few good friends at my danish-equivalent-of-a-highschool, so I don't feel that much like an outsider.
However, at least 75% of the people in my usual classes are on that whole "coolness"-trend, who seems to be worrying more about wearing expensive clothes and telling people how drunk they got last weekend and puked all over some chick, or how they drove through a graveyard on their moped to escape the police trying to get them for speeding*1, than actually getting themselves together and trying to act a little intelligent instead of just moping around like an idiot.

My advice to you is, like repeatedly stated in the threat, that you shouldn't feel bad about it, since your "problem" probably just means that you are more intelligent than average, and maybe shouldn't worry about what cool-addicts think of you.*2


*1 - Yes, somebody actually was this retarded. Man up and pay those 500KR damn it. (About $90.)
*2 - Not calling your potential girl-to-be a cool-addict, but referring to the common general population of a highschool.
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby Green Bay Hackers » Fri Jan 18, 2008 5:18 am UTC

This is pretty much why I wasn't ever able to get any dates in high school at all (or at least that's what I like to tell myself.)

Later I realized that dating high school girls is a pretty bad idea anyway.

In the future you will probably see that I am right.

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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby Izawwlgood » Fri Jan 18, 2008 5:26 am UTC

I went to a pretty small highschool that actually held its nerdy folk in high regard, so as such had a pretty atypical high school experience. Sure the athletes and badasses (as much as highschoolers can be anyhow) where there.

I did alot of avoiding social activities too, but certainly partook in inebriated festivities. Some hard learned advice is with the right company, ANYTHING can be fun. Similarly, a truly fun person will find entertainment in any situation. If your crowd bites, find another one. If the activities bite, make your own. Being bored isn't cool.

Keep your head up though, as serious and upsetting as things may see, shit gets better, there ARE intelligent people around.
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby ParanoidDrone » Fri Jan 18, 2008 5:35 am UTC

I sort of had a similar problem in high school (minus girl issues, I never got into the dating scene), in that I never did the "cool" stuff like party (and drive...), simply because I never really saw the point. I'm generally a loner, so it suited me just fine, though I'm fairly sure I'm the only person in my class who acted that way.

I must say, these responses have been very encouraging to read.
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby TheTankengine » Fri Jan 18, 2008 5:38 am UTC

Masuri wrote:You know who else thought they were better than everyone else? ;)

Those damned Martians!
Always feeling so smug and looking cool with their giant eyes and mind powers...
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby Moo » Fri Jan 18, 2008 8:28 am UTC

Just one thought: if you're on the outside looking in on popular culture because that's really who you are, then good for you and don't change. If you're doing it because "official outsider" is the identity you've created for yourself and you're sticking to it regardless of whether it makes you happy or not, this is not so good. Sometimes our* need not to conform is so strong we end up going too far the other way and we conform to this idea we have in our head of what we're supposed to be and what we're supposed to look down on so we can be that guy who doesn't conform.

I couldn't tell from your post (@OP, obviously) which one you were; if being on the outside made you happy (girl issues aside) because you don't agree with the mainstream stuff you see around you, or if you're sad and actually wish you were more inside (if not all the way inside). If it makes you happy about who you are, and she doesn't get it I agree with everyone on here that you shouldn't change to make other people happy and be proud of who you are. Just wanted to throw out the other viewpoint too.

*where "our" refers to that subset of people who can associate with the OP and includes but is not limited to nerds, geeks, individually-minded people, cynics, goths and crazy folk.
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby Freakish » Fri Jan 18, 2008 2:38 pm UTC

Several times a year, this happens to me at school:

*Some argument between me and a "normal" teenager*
Me: Honestly, I really just don't care what you think.
Other Guy: So you think that makes you cool?
*sigh*
*I walk away*



I see these people everyday and I aways just think, What the fuck... You've got these idiots coming to class stoned, hate turned, pants hanging off their ass, and blasting rap out of their iPods. How the fuck did this happen?
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby null » Fri Jan 18, 2008 3:26 pm UTC

If your crowd bites, find another one.


Thats not always as easy as it sounds...I'm stuck on a placement with a company, away from university (and my friends there), away from my old school friends (who are at uni's around the country (UK)) and ive met a large number of people where i currently live (from work, and two separate universities in the city).

I have met quite a few people i get on with well, who i find interesting and fun to socialise with. Problem is, they dont really want to socialise as much as id like with me (we do socialise together occasionally...), as they have their own friends, or they dont really socialise that much. Most of them are in long term relationships and are joined at the hip...and as such dont see a need to go out at the weekend with friends. Boring.

Anyway, back to the thread.

Im not sure its fair to slate people for wearing 'cool' clothes - i dress in what people would call 'cool' clothes, because i like getting compliments that im well dressed...Yes, this is shallow...But what else would i wear? That baggy hoodie that i wear when im coding? It smells of Red Bull and chips.

What i can say is that rather than 'looking in on others' just do what you enjoy with whoever you get on with. People will take your 'looking in' as looking DOWN...Which they wont like. I personally think fitting in is ok, as long as you use it as a means to meet more people, so you can find the ones who are intelligent, social and just generally rock.

I never did the "cool" stuff like party (and drive...)


Partying and driving rocks. Drunken philosophical conversations with my 'intelligent' friends are great. Plus i enjoy driving...Cars have some very cool physics/engineering applications...Tyre/road interactions, the Otto cycle, high-temperature metals for use in turbo chargers, computational aerodynamics etc etc...
Last edited by null on Fri Jan 18, 2008 5:38 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby ParanoidDrone » Fri Jan 18, 2008 3:49 pm UTC

null wrote:Partying and driving rocks. Drunken philosophical conversations with my 'intelligent' friends are great. Plus i enjoy driving...Cars have some very cool physics/engineering applications...Wheel/tyre interactions, the Otto cycle, high-temperature metals for use in turbo chargers, computational aerodynamics etc etc...

...I didn't think it was possible to be so involved with a car. I have no idea what most of that stuff is.

God damnit, I'm drowning in nerdiness. Not that it's a bad thing. <_<
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby null » Fri Jan 18, 2008 5:04 pm UTC

Its a shame i drive a ford fiesta eh...Damnit i want a better car.

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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby Enigma90825 » Fri Jan 18, 2008 5:08 pm UTC

ParanoidDrone wrote:
null wrote:Partying and driving rocks. Drunken philosophical conversations with my 'intelligent' friends are great. Plus i enjoy driving...Cars have some very cool physics/engineering applications...Wheel/tyre interactions, the Otto cycle, high-temperature metals for use in turbo chargers, computational aerodynamics etc etc...

...I didn't think it was possible to be so involved with a car. I have no idea what most of that stuff is.

God damnit, I'm drowning in nerdiness. Not that it's a bad thing. <_<


Don't feel bad, I have basically no idea how cars work either. Haven't tried to find out.

As for Moo's assertion of the two different types of "outsiders" I'd say that I'm the first one (although I may be a bit biased to be the better one.) I've been this way my whole life and have more or less no idea how to change it even if I wanted to. I don't think I do want to change it. I got a couple people who seem to be in a similar situation as me and I'm friends with them, so it could be worse. I still find it possible to associate and hang out with the people who aren't like this, just in... small doses.

Yeah, I agree with what basically everybody has been saying that I shouldn't feel bad about this. It should be interesting to see how this goes...

null wrote:Its a shame i drive a ford fiesta eh...Damnit i want a better car.


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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby Moo » Fri Jan 18, 2008 5:16 pm UTC

Enigma, good for you then, don't change who you are. That isn't the same as not making consessions for people and adapting to the company you're in (like you describe with your "small doses" friends), but sounds like you've got that covered too.

Stick to your guns. There's life after school, and you're gonna actually be pleasantly surprised by it, as apposed by cookie-cutter types who are gonna get a huge shock.

About making a girl feel special, it's kinda all in the title... do things she doesn't expect because you know it'll make her happy. Best place for that kinda advice: mosy on over to the girl thread...
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby ishikiri » Fri Jan 18, 2008 6:57 pm UTC

null wrote:Im not sure its fair to slate people for wearing 'cool' clothes - i dress in what people would call 'cool' clothes, because i like getting compliments that im well dressed...Yes, this is shallow...But what else would i wear? That baggy hoodie that i wear when im coding? It smells of Red Bull and chips.


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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby Lycur » Fri Jan 18, 2008 11:00 pm UTC

aleflamedyud wrote:I used to feel that way. It's called "being intelligent while in high school".


Indeed. The solution to this problem is to graduate from high school.

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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby Ishindri » Fri Jan 18, 2008 11:52 pm UTC

I know exactly what you mean. I've always felt like life is a river, and I feel like I'm standing on the bank of that river, watching it flow by.

Only a year and a half to go...
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby null » Fri Jan 18, 2008 11:54 pm UTC

I know exactly what you mean. I've always felt like life is a river, and I feel like I'm standing on the bank of that river, watching it flow by.

Only a year and a half to go...


Why sit there waiting for your world to change? Enjoy what you have while you have it.

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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby Ishindri » Sat Jan 19, 2008 12:34 am UTC

Well, my very first D&D session's this Monday :wink:

But I didn't really mean that I feel helpless to change the world, or anything like that. Rather, I feel like an observer rather than a participant, like everyone else is busy traveling from point A to point B, then to point C and so on; but I'm the only one who can see all the points and how they connect. I don't know if I'm making any sense here; that's the problem with metaphor. Suffice it to say that I definitely feel like an outsider looking in with respect to most high school culture.
All is well. We are not like the others.

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b.i.o
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby b.i.o » Sat Jan 19, 2008 1:03 am UTC

Lycur wrote:
aleflamedyud wrote:I used to feel that way. It's called "being intelligent while in high school".


Indeed. The solution to this problem is to graduate from high school.


Indeed it is. If you try hard enough, it's possible to accelerate this solution by a year.

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westcydr
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby westcydr » Sat Jan 19, 2008 10:08 am UTC

Enigma90825 wrote:So, I was talking with one of my "friends" today and it got interesting. We had just gone through a thing where we almost went out but ended up not doing so. Basically that if I want a girlfriend I need to make the girl feel special and all this stuff, but thats not entirely what this is about (although if you have any comments/advice on that, feel free) It ended with her saying that I was too cynical and acted as an "outsider looking in" on the whole high school life, and the thing that's worrying me is that I know she's right.

I just look at some of the things people do and see no point in them so I don't do them and I'm confused by it.

So, my question. Does anybody else feel this way about their social life? Is it a bad thing? Should you try to change it, and if so, how?

I have always been an "outsider" either too poor to be one of the rich kids, too rich to be one of the poor kids, not quite as nerdy as the nerd, but not anywhere near as dumb as the dumbasses, and yet not really "normal" enough for the middle grounds... In HS, everyone knew me, but I was not "popular" in any true sense of the word.. It worked out ok for me..
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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby null » Sat Jan 19, 2008 10:18 am UTC

I'm the only one who can see all the points and how they connect.


You think you can see how they connect. Only Hugh Hefner truly understands how life works.

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Re: Outside Looking In

Postby tylerwylie » Sat Jan 19, 2008 10:38 am UTC

It's just high school, have some fun 8)
Who are you and who am I
To say we know the reason why?
Some are born; some men die
Beneath one infinite sky.
There'll be war, there'll be peace.
But everything one day will cease.
All the iron turned to rust;
All the proud men turned to dust.


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