Thursday, January 22, 2009


Worrying about being popular is something you do as a teenager in high school. Only, I never did. Above is a picture taken at the Saddie Hawkins dance my senior year (which I shamelessly took off of facebook. Dude, if you put it on facebook, I have no problem stealing it and putting it on my blog). I am not in it. Most of my really close friends are not in it. The picture shows a large proportion of the popular kids of my high school class (the smart/class officer popular, not to be confused with the jock popular. They were dumb). As you might deduce, given my absence, I was not popular in high school.

I was not bothered by that.

During my sophomore year, my best friend since fifth grade decided that she didn’t want to hang out with our group anymore. We weren’t meeting her needs—her need to be more social, her need to be more popular. And while there was some hurt at her rejection, I remember thinking, “it is ultimately her loss because we have way more going for us. But hey, if she wants the drama, the interventions, and the parties, I won’t stop her.”

And I wasn’t bothered.

So tell me, why is it that as a mature, grown woman, I suddenly have this desire to be popular? I look at other people’s blogs and I think, “Why don’t people look at my blog? I am just as funny as they are.” I sneak peaks at other blogs’ statistics and comments and compare them to mine, causing me to despair at the discrepancy. At church, I look at the cool woman everyone just absolutely loves and wants to hang out with and wonder if I will ever be liked in that way.

You would think that by now, I would have picked up on the fact that I Will Never Be Popular. I was o.k. with that in high school. Where did all that self esteem go? Isn’t one’s self esteem supposed to exponentially increase after leaving high school? What is mine doing? I seem to be having a mid-life crisis at 29.

The logical explanation is that I am just at a cross roads in life. I am no longer a student, I don’t have a definite job lined up, and because I have been so busy with graduate school and (*ahem*) Mr. F., I don’t feel like I have a strong group of friends in my local community. I suspect though that soon the ground will stop shifting from underneath me, and I can once again spit in the face of popularity and be content with doing my own thing. Or at least, that is my hope.

Has this every happened to you?

(Oh and don't think that I don't appreciate the irony of having all of these people, who were too cool for me in high school, suddenly want to be friends on facebook.)


Hizzeather said...

I have found that to be "popular" in the blogdom you have to comment on every person's blog that you read. They in turn will comment on yours, and feel popular. It's hard work though. Then, once you get more popular, you have to have a contest on your blog with a cool prize that people have to blog about to win. It works every time.

Your blog is awesome and just need more exposure. Basically, you have to whore yourself out. :)

ps...those people were popular? hmpf.

Lady Susan said...

I know. Prostitution seems to be the way of life these days. ;)

And remember, it was the 90's. Even though it doesn't look like it, they had a lot going for them.

Retail Worker #48721093 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Retail Worker #48721093 said...

That picture...oh my goodness. Flashbacks.

Retail Worker #48721093 said...

Who did you borrow this off of btw? The aforementioned friend from fifth grade?

MBC said...

I briefly had serious self esteem issues when everyone started using Google Reader and I couldn't accurately track my blog stats anymore. Must. have. daily. validation.

Misty said...

lol, I saw that picture on FB the other day too and had many of the same feelings. I was somewhere between aquaintences and friends with a lot of those people. But I was definitely not part of the group.

I spent entirely too long contemplating the whole facebook thing. For example 2 people who I was close friends with in Elementary and Middle School, but barely spoke to in High School do more FB chatting with me than anyone. I just find it all so fascinating.

Anyway...I don't think it ever goes away. I've decided I'm destined to be someone how goes in and out of peoples lives without ever making a strong connection with a "group". I have my family and a handful of close friends and that's good for me.

Although it really did nothing for my self esteem when I visited a ward that I had been part of for 2.5 years, and out of for 1.5 years. I saw someone I had had regular contact with and thought we were friends. I was with my SIL and she stood there talking to both of us for 5 minutes when suddenly the light went on and she remembered who I was. lol.

Anyway...I'm getting very rambly. The bottom line is...I totally get what you're saying. lol

Lady Susan said...

RW--I am friends with Megan J., the aforementioned friend, and Ned A. who were tagged in that photo.

MBC--I totally hear you about the google reader thing. Totally threw me off.

Misty--I agree. I really don't think I have the personality to be popular. I mean, I really dislike large groups. Give me my family and a few close friends and I am good to go. I find myself getting annoyed otherwise. ;) And dude, weirdness with the woman from church. I hate when that happens (and oh, it has definitely happened to me.)

Katie said...

I started to get annoyed that I wasn't getting more traffic. It seemed I hit a plateau and couldn't break thru.

I started contemplating doing give aways and posting pictures of pretty things instead of writing about my life, but then I had to stop short.

The only unique thing I can put out there in blog land is myself. MY live, MY thoughts...ME. Then I started to realize I didn't give a crap about getting a ton of readers.

It made me feel much happier with my small corner of the interweb...

Washington Hills said...

Can I leave a cheesy message? When I moved to Walla Walla, I had just left a "popular situation" in Indiana, but it was not a good one. When I walked into our seminary class that first day of Sophomore year, I just about fell over and died at all the Mormons! And you guys saved me. I know I probably acted like an idiot half the time, but please know Lady Susan and all you other Walla Walla-ers out there, the Scott Family was grateful...and you, L.S., introduced me to The Scarlet Pimpernel and his amazing torso which I watch with my husband (oh, yes, he likes it and laughs at the dialogue) on a regular basis.

And to defend FB and blogs, I really like seeing what's up with everyone, even if I don't respond. I love and respect all of you and am cheering your marriages/families on!!!

You rock!!!

Washington Hills said...

Lame-o, but now you've got me thinking about it. Maybe we just only have so much energy to keep in contact with people. It's not personal, just what it is. And I do have a friend who keeps in contact with EVERYONE and I've always thought it was rather unhealthy. I'm just waiting for her to explode like the end of one of those Indiana Jones movies.

Lady Susan said...

Katie--that is a good attitude and perspective to have. One that I should adopt. Thanks for sharing.

WA Hills--Sometimes I am amazed about how clueless I was in high school. I don't think I ever heard about your previous high school experience in Indiana. By the way, you were and are hilarious and a great addition to our group!

Yes, FB and blogs are a great way to keep in touch with the everyday going ons. It is a great alternative to the once a year/once every few years shout out, "So what have you been doing the last ten years since I saw you in high school?" Really, how can you possibly respond to that?


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