That is one of the best things anyone has ever said to me, and it was completely unexpected. Granted, I was being rather coy at the time. It was about three years ago and I was at work chatting with Michael, a co-worker. We were talking about some fabulous concert that was coming to town and I mentioned how I was much too broke to go.
Michael: Broke? It seems like you're always broke. You make as much as I do and you don't even have a family to support!
Nat: Yeah, well, I have a lot of bills and...stuff.
Michael: What, do you have a nasty drug habit or something?
At that point in my life I was quite firmly NOT out as a bi person. In fact, I was so far in the closet that I was practically hanging out with Mr. Tumnus and eating Turkish Delight. (Not that I'm terribly out now, but that's a different post for the future.) No one had any idea that I had a significant other and that she was a female! How could I tell him that my girlfriend wasn't working and so I was actually supporting us both? How could I explain that together we had a lot of bills to pay and sometimes we'd be so broke that I'd have to use my gas card to buy us groceries at the corner gas station? (Expired bologna and Wonder Bread, anyone?) I couldn't go into any of this, so I simply smiled and said, "No, just a lot of bills."
I've always wanted to be one of those mysterious women. You know the ones - they have this aura about them. You want to know everything about them but they give you nothing. They make you feel flustered and nervous when you try to talk to them. They're just so...so cool!
That's when he called me mysterious. I was THRILLED! I am the opposite of mysterious. You will know my life story within seconds of meeting me. "Hi-I'm-Nat-I'm-a-feminist-socialist-treehugger-who-hates-being-patronized-and-who-likes-music-and-art-and-taking-pictures-of-weird-stuff-and-long-walks-on-the-beach-and..." I'll go on and on. SO not cool.
However, as time goes by I've accepted that I will never be that dark, mysterious woman in the corner who everybody wants to know, and I think I'm alright with that. I like me, even with all my nerdiness. This brings us to the latest reasons why.
17 Reasons I'm Not Cool (And I'm Okay With That)
- I've always like school, not for the social aspect (I never had many friends), but for the learning. How geeky is that?
- I play the flute. Not the sultry saxophone or the wailin' trumpet or the pounding drums. The flute. Like Alyson Hannigan in that awful movie franchise, only with less body invasiveness.
- I'm an adult and I'm taking beginner piano lessons.
- I cry. Oh MAN do I cry. None of this stoic, strong stuff for me. I cry, I weep, I sob, I blubber. I cry when I'm sad, mad, or happy. And I don't look all cute when I do it, either. My whole face turns red and blotchy and swollen, my nose runs, my voice turns raspy. It isn't pretty. I'm just one big ball of deeply-felt emotions.
- I get excited about things like sunsets and autumn and Northern Lights and hoar frost. (By the way, as I write this there is a particularly beautiful batch of fresh hoar frost outside. Fucking gorgeous.)
- I take the bus. Or as my co-worker is fond of calling it, the Loser Cruiser.
- I love reading!
- I will go to the movie theatre and watch a movie by myself.
- I am not cynical. I usually believe the best in people and give them second and third and fourth chances when they let me down.
- I don't really do sarcasm. I tend to not realize when others are being sarcastic towards me and when I try to say something sarcastic, it comes out all wrong and people miss it entirely.
- I like things! Cool people never seem to like anything. It doesn't matter if it's a movie, a band, a song, a holiday, or whatever - chances are I like it and all the cool kids don't.
- I really really love my family. I know - how uncool! You're supposed to barely put up with your dysfunctional relations. You're supposed to make a sarcastic, cynical appearance at Christmas dinner and then get the hell out of there as fast as you can. You're NOT supposed to stick around and play crib or Scrabble.
- I play crib and Scrabble.
- I go to the library regularly and take out books.
- I don't have cable television.
- I can't dance yet I love it so I flail around every chance I get. Cool people either don't dance or dance very well.
- I have a video tape of when I was in the community band. It is of our summer tour to the mid-western United States. It's filled with concerts and marching competitions. I love this video tape. When I first met my ex, I made her sit down and watch it with me. To her credit, she did not go running for the hills.
All I need to do now is find people who think this list is what makes me cool, not what prevents me from being cool. And if one of them should also think I was kinda cute, well that wouldn't be so bad either.